Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Why I Wrote Sex, Mom and God


(This article was first posted on Huffington Post)


The 5,000-plus emails and letters generated by my memoir Crazy for God (about why I left a leadership position in the religious right) made it clear that I still had questions to answer about my family's role in the rise of the American extremism, even violence.

People liked the book but some people knew that I'd ducked some questions, like the fact we were responsible for the murder of several abortion providers. It takes a while to work up the courage to be honest and after I got Crazy for God off my chest I wanted to take another step (and my gloves off) before moving on.

The reason I've written my (just published) new book Sex, Mom, and God: How the Bible's Strange Take on Sex Led to Crazy Politics -- and How I Learned to Love Women (and Jesus) Anyway is because of the insane rightward tilt of the Republicans post-Obama's election has meant that the path taken by the religious right (the movement that most informs the present day Republican Party) was something I felt needed to be better understood and exposed... from the inside.

When I'd be interviewed on NPR or by Rachel Maddow it often seemed to me that the questions asked about the Religious Right showed that even at best there is a lack of understanding of what it is that has pushed America in the direction of a theocracy where people like Michele Bachmann and Sarah Palin, Glenn Beck et al seem to want to turn the US into a "Christian" version of Iran.

In Sex, Mom and God, I use my life as a lens through which to view a larger narrative: the rightward lurch of American politics since the 1970s.

What is happening in America is an expression of mass sexual dysfunction "inspired" by the allegiance of millions of individuals to the Bible. That is all the culture war really is. I wanted to write a book about this but told as a personal story.

In Sex, Mom and God I go back to where I -- and millions of others -- began our journeys: in the grip of our bedtime Bible stories! From a child's perspective peering out at the larger world from deep in the cocoon of a "Bible believing home," every word of the Bible is understood to be true in ways that nothing else is or ever will be even if, years later, that child grows up and changes his or her mind.

To be true to what I hope is the heart of the best of the universal religious message, I want to say that redemption through selflessness, hope, and love necessitates a new and fearless repudiation of the parts of holy books and traditions -- be they Jewish, Christian, Muslim (or other) -- that bring us messages of hate, exclusion, racism, ignorance, misogyny, homophobia, tribalism, and fear. To find any spiritual truth within any religion's holy books, we must mentally edit them by the light God has placed in each of us. As Anne Hutchinson put it at her trial, "The Lord knows that I could not open scripture; he must by his prophetical office open it unto me."

Those who wish to live as Christians, Jews, Muslims, agnostics, or atheists by following the humble thread of what I'll call divine uncertainty, as opposed to those who wish to force others to be like them by using Christianity, Judaism, Islam, or doctrinaire secularism as a weapon, must shift from unquestioning faith in their books, the Bible, Koran, Torah, (or science) to a life-affirming message of transcendence.

The "big issues" really do boil down to sex, mom and God. "Modernity" has changed nothing. We human animals seek out meaning that transcends the sum of our physical parts. That never changes. And we make the same mistakes in every age. What has changed is that the stakes have gotten intolerably high because of our growing capacity to do global harm.

Anyone raised in a home where one or more parent or sibling was driven by a sense of passionate mission, be that of the left, right, religious, political or social will "get" my book. How does one separate one's self from a driven tribe? That's the individual's question. Our larger societal question is: How do we box in, contain and then reverse the evil the American right is doing to our society? For instance, if anyone can look at the way religion has treated and treats women and not be pissed off they have something wrong with them.

I intend on pissing off every misogynist homophobic religious conservative and/or empire-building neoconservative imperialist supporter of our permanent war economy stuck in the ideological straight jacket that I used to so proudly wear.

I'd also like to plant a seed that changes a few minds.

Sex, Mom and God also makes an argument for rediscovering the human values that are what is far more important than politics. Or put it this way; at age 58 I've discovered that nothing beats a tea party with a two year old who loves you unconditionally.


Saturday, May 28, 2011

Saudi "Royals" and Republican Hypocrites

The Republicans share something with the Saudi royal family: Their shot at ruling depends on coddling religious extremists while doing the opposite of everything those extremists say they believe in, in other words perfecting the art of gross hypocrisy.

The Saudi royals have apartments in London, drink, cavort, live like the secularists they are, but rule a "conservative" country stuck in the Middle Ages that is willfully even proudly backward. Ditto the Republicans who are really all about big business and greed, but talk "family values" to easily duped traditionalists who are living in their hermetically sealed religious universe.

The House of Saud, and the House of Republicanism play the same game.

The "princes" of the House of Saud get away with living like Hugh Heffner's younger, dumber, hornier little cousins -- while residing anywhere but in Saudi Arabia -- while also presiding over the holy places of Islam and exporting funding for hard line Islam worldwide. They can do this because while they're at home they empower the extremist fringe of the Muslim world: the Wahhabist wing of fundamentalist Islam.

The Wahhabis advocate the mix of state power and religion through the reestablishment of the Caliphate, the form of government adopted by the Prophet Muhammad's successors during the age of Muslim expansion. What sets Wahhabism apart from other Sunni Islamist movements is its historical obsession with purging Sufis, Shiites, and other Muslims who do not conform to its twisted interpretation of Islamic scripture.

Sound familiar?

Let me re-word that description a la USA and the Republican Party in its Michelle Bachmann/Sarah Palin incarnation:

Like most Evangelical fundamentalist movements, the American Religious Right advocates the fusion of state power and religion through the reestablishment of the "Christian America" idea of "American Exceptionalism" (i.e., a nation chosen by God), the form of government adopted by the Puritan's successors during the age of early American colonialism. What sets the Evangelical Religious Right apart from other Christian movements is its historical obsession with purging other Americans who do not conform to its twisted interpretation of Christian scripture.

In the 1970s and early 80s my late father (Francis Schaeffer) and I (as I describe in my new book Sex, Mom, and God: How the Bible's Strange Take on Sex Led to Crazy Politics--and How I Learned to Love Women (and Jesus) Anyway ) were part of the leadership structure of the American version of the Wahhabis. We advocated the fusion of state power and religion. We were there inspiring Pat Robertson, James Dobson, Jerry Falwell and the others when the Republican Party gradually struck its "Saudi" compromise with the American Religious Right.

The unstated agreement goes like this: Republicans will pander to the Religious Right on the social issues - abortion, gay rights, prayer in schools, creationism in text books, etc., etc., as long as the Religious Right turns a blind eye to the fact that the Republican Party will A), do nothing substantive to change any of these things, and B) sell the soul of the country to corporate America, a place where one percent of the population grab as much wealth as the lower 50 percent... just like Saudi Arabia.

And just as the Wahhabists would spread terror through the world by being the major financial contributors to extremist Islam, the American Religious Right would also sign on to the export of endless wars (often motivated by so-called Christian Zionism), militarism without end, and direct violent action here at home, for instance in the killing of abortion providers and other acts of domestic terror.

The Wahhabist/Evangelical/Republican-type "understanding" goes like this: religious extremists rule the people under their thumbs, as if it's the year 1012, and in return they let our real rulers -- the corporations and their plutocratic masters -- live any way they want and rob the rest of America blind.

So a Newt Gingrich can run up his half a million dollar tab for jewelry, and a Donald Trump can own his casinos, and both men can have all the wives and women they want... as long as they say they are "pro-life" and will fight to restrict women's rights at home and support endless military expansion abroad.

This mode of operating: call it massive hypocrisy, won't work forever in Saudi Arabia or here in America. With the implosion of the Trump "presidential" "birther" run, the Gingrich debacle, the defund-Medicare fiasco, et al, we see just why the Republicans don't stand a chance in 2012.

You see they are up against a president who actually walks the walk on family values, national security, and the economy. President Obama lives the clean, sober, thoughtful, soft spoken reasonable kindly life the Evangelicals talk about, while supporting money-grubbing philandering cast of characters (from the C-Street adulterers club to people with big Tiffany accounts) and the Koch brothers et al.

The strain is showing.

The House of Saud is doomed in the long term. Picture the world when oil is gone and/or replaced with other energy sources. And the Republican Party is also doomed.

The marriage of moralistic rigidity with a total sell out to greed and Wall Street won't work here any more than the Wahhabis/Royals "deal" will work forever in Saudi Arabia.

Eventually the party that makes the Goldman Sachs rape of the world possible, but depends on voters who say they believe every word in the Bible, will have to come to terms with Bible verses like this one: "Jesus answered, 'If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.'" (Matthew 19:21).

As for the general public, the Republicans are wearing out their welcome. Most Americans don't want idiots who pander to creationists, global warming deniers, secessionists, birthers, believers in the right to life of stem cells etc., etc., running the country.









Monday, May 23, 2011

Frank Schaeffer on Magical Menstruation

Frank Schaeffer on Magical Menstruation

Please click on this title and
read

Magic Menstrual Mummies


on one of my favorite websites;

KILLING THE BUDDHA

DEADLINE THEOLOGY



Friday, May 20, 2011

France to Legalize Rape In Order To Save Its Most Important Leaders from American Cowboy Style Humiliation

When the CIA (taking time out from murdering bin Laden and/or faking his murder) agreed to help place thousands of young women agents in every luxury hotel in America in order to entrap any and all French political leaders who might challenge the worldwide corporate hegemony of America, the idea was diabolically clever.

As noted by the New York Times:

"Suspicions are widespread in France that Mr. Strauss Kahn may have been set up. On Wednesday, a poll conducted by CSA showed that 57 percent of people surveyed think he was 'the victim of a plot.' Seventy percent of respondents from his Socialist Party also agree with the theory."

It turns out that French left-leaning socialists share the same world view as that found amongst New Jersey's Republican voters. In a poll - one out of every three New Jersey conservatives were found to think that Obama could be the anti-Christ. To be precise, 18% of self-identified conservatives affirmatively say that Obama is the anti-Christ, with 17% not sure. Among the self-identified Republican label, it's 14% who say Obama has the number 666 hidden underneath his hair, plus 15% who aren't sure.

Or as French author Bernard-Henri Levy put it

"I am troubled by a system of justice modestly termed 'accusatory,' meaning that anyone can come along and accuse another fellow of any crime--and it will be up to the accused to prove that the accusation is false and without basis in fact. I resent the New York tabloid press, a disgrace to the profession, that, without the least precaution and before having effected the least verification, has depicted Dominique Strauss-Kahn as a sicko, a pervert, borderlining on serial killer, a psychiatrist's dream."

Perhaps the Strauss Kahn conspiracy and the Obama/Birther conspiracy are one and the same. Stories were planted in the Hawaii press "documenting" Obama's "birth" in 1961 in anticipation of his run for the US presidency in 2008. Then in 2009 the Sofitel hotel chain hired an un-named Nicolas Sarkozy plant on the off chance that his rival for the French presidency would stay at it's midtown New York flagship hotel three years later.

Some people might find this hard to believe until they consider the fact that when the World Trade Center was constructed in the early 1970s it was pre-wired with explosives by the CIA and Mossad to be exploded by George W Bush in 2001 in order to help him deflect attention from the West Bank settlements.

American operatives knew that the French are more relaxed about so-called extramarital affaires than the prudish Americans with their "Anglo-Saxon" tradition of moralist prudery. They counted on the fact that the leaders that they would set up and/or entrap with false rape allegations would have -- in all probability -- relaxed and civilized French attitudes and thus have actually have actually "raped," many women over years of good living and/or molested or otherwise harassed significant numbers of women in the past, thus lending credibility to the trumped up charges.

"We French deal with sex and romance in a manner that reflects our culture," said an outraged, humiliated French socialist leader, who asked to remain un-named because she feared her house was being watched by Mormons, California wine moguls bent on addicting the world to wines lacking in the role of the wine maker to bring out the expression of a wine's terroir and/or the CIA.

"Since the Americans have plotted to destroy us with trumped up charges of 'rape' and will continue to do so our only defense will be to de-stigmatize so-called rape in order to liberate all human beings from Anglo-Saxon oppression," continued the highly placed French anonymous source while standing outside the French government's Ministry of Culture and Communication, where she works.

Leading French feminists are taking up the call to liberate their leading French men from so-called moral constraints. "In France within our relaxed culture most liberated women actually enjoy what cowboy Americans refer to as 'rape,' " said one socialist feminist leader on a France 24 talk show, who also asked to remain un-named fearing being targeted by the USA and "Those diabolical Navy Seals."

"It is most certainly outrageous that a leading French political figure of the enlightened French left be subject to the treatment reserved for ordinary men who fly coach," said French feminist, and author of the three thousand page treatise Discovering My Marquis de Sad in the Inner Woman-- Liberation Through Perpetual Humiliation.

The French public is showing strong support for new proposed legislation that will make it illegal to accuse any member of the French government, or any leading French man and/or best selling author, and/or winner of the coveted Ordre national de la L├ęgion d'honneur or any French man who has flown business class or first class on Air France within any calendar year from the date of the accusation of rape-- of rape.

"In any case the attentions of our leading intellectuals and political figures paid to some otherwise unnoticeable female should be seen as an honor by this female," said a well known actress and human rights French feminist (who asked to remain un-named).

France will therefore soon decimalize rape when these "rapes" are really no more than the accepted French expression by leading French men taking what is rightfully theirs. France's spokesman for the top court, the Constitutional Council, explained, "We do not think in illogical inches and yards but in centimeters here. It is time for America to become logical."

"We hope Americans may learn from this example and put their barbaric house in order. It is a terrible thing to see extraordinary men treated as they would be if they were simply ordinary people," said leading culture critic and forward thinking writer who asked to remain un-named.

Given the change in the law made today by the Constitutional Council from today in France, all sex with prominent officials will from now on be automatically categorized as consensual-- in fact -- obligatory.




Thursday, May 19, 2011

My Religion Dispatches Interview on Sex, Mom and God

Instead of trying to explain why I wrote "Sex, Mom and God" to people who like the book, or to those who hate it via email, please indulge me as I post an interview I did on Religion Dispatches, that will at least offer what the author -- me -- thinks of his book and offer a bit of context for what is sure to be a wild ride.

This was first posted on RD May 18, 2011 at



INTERVIEW May 18, 2011Mass Bible-Based Sexual Dysfunction as Root of Culture Wars? Frank Schaeffer Breaks It Down Novelist and ex-fundamentalist talks about growing up with Bible bedtime stories, his debt to a free-spirited mother, and the meaning of American religion's rightward turn.

By FRANK SCHAEFFER

Sex, Mom, and God: How the Bible's Strange Take on Sex Led to Crazy Politics--and How I Learned to Love Women (and Jesus) Anyway
Frank Schaeffer
Da Capo Press (2011)

What inspired you to write Sex, Mom, and God?

First, the 5000-plus emails and letters generated by my memoir Crazy for God made it clear that I still had questions to answer about my family's role in the rise of the religious right. People liked the book but some people knew that I'd ducked some questions. It takes a while to work up the courage to be honest, and after I got Crazy for God off my chest I wanted to take another step (and my gloves off) before moving on.

Second, in three novels, Portofino, Saving Grandma, and Zermatt and in two nonfiction works, Crazy for God and Patience with God, I'd included my mother's life and/or used her as a point of departure for inventing the fictional character of Elsa Becker. I felt I'd failed to do mom justice. Elsa Becker was too much like my mother on the one hand and too little like her on the other, and in my memoirs she'd played second fiddle to my father. She deserved better. I once got a letter from one of my mother's followers telling me that, having just read my novel Portofino (a work of humor where the missionary mother's character, "Elsa Becker," is like my mother--in some ways), she was sure it would "kill your mother because of the hatred for Jesus that drips from your SATANIC pen!"

Coincidentally, that fan letter (received in the early 1990s before I was using e-mail) arrived in the same post delivery as a note from Mom asking me for another dozen signed hardcover copies of that novel so that my mother could send out more to her friends. Mom's follower had signed her letter "Repent!" My mother signed her note "I'm so proud of you." Attempting to unravel the mystery of how my mother managed to have attracted such "fans" (through her many books) and who she really was (and is)--a life-embracing free spirit--nagged me into writing this book. Like many evangelicals, mom was a better person than her theology warranted. Through her I wanted to explore why the "worse" a person is, in terms of consistency to their fundamentalist faith, the better a human being they become.

Third, the rightward tilt of the Republicans after Obama's election has meant that the path taken by the religious right (the movement that most informs the present day Republican Party) was something I felt needed to be better understood. For instance when I'd be interviewed on NPR or by journalists on MSNBC, it often seemed to me that the questions being asked about religious people and beliefs showed that even at best there is a lack of understanding of what it is that has pushed America to the hard right. I felt that I could explain the issues from the point of view of someone who could say "been-there-done-that" and give an insider's perspective.

Lastly (and this is harder to explain), I felt that the story of the religious right has been told badly because it's been treated as either an academic subject (for instance when "explaining" the Reconstructionists in terms of American religious history) or a political subject (say the way MSNBC treats religion as it relates to the Tea Party or so-called culture war).

From my perspective, understanding the larger political story necessitates delving into the accumulated impact of thousands of individual stories. I use my life as a lens through which to view a larger narrative: the rightward lurch of American politics since the 1970s. What is happening in America is an expression of mass sexual dysfunction "inspired" by the allegiance of millions of individuals to the Bible. That is all the culture war really is. I wanted to write a book about this but told as a personal story too and told as a novelist tells stories--i.e., in a way that breaks down the door between fact and emotion.

What sparked your interest?

At 58, as a father of three and a grandfather of four, I'm still trying to figure out how it is that I think I know certain things (say, that I don't know anything), but still have such a strong emotional tie, or rather am bound to, a way of seeing the world as if I was still back in my fundamentalist days. In Sex, Mom and God I go back to where I--and millions of others--began our journeys: in the grip of our bedtime Bible stories!

From a child's perspective peering out at the larger world from deep in the cocoon of a "Bible believing home," every word of the Bible is understood to be true in ways that nothing else is or ever will be even if, years later, that child grows up and changes his or her mind. That former child's grown-up incarnation may be willing to admit nuance and paradox, but the emotional "weight" of the absolutely true Word lingers. The actual words in the Word are still the very fabric of a whole private universe inhabiting those raised inside the hermetically sealed tunnel of absolutist faith, "truer" than all the other words he or she will ever hear, say, read, or think put together--truer than any later reasoned evidence. And on top of that the words of the Bible, or even a few notes of an old hymn, cast a shadow of bittersweet nostalgia that defies reason as thoroughly as a whiff of perfume reminds a man of his first lover and evokes a longing that cuts to the heart.

I used to think I'd someday sort out the difference between what I believe "for myself" and how I was conditioned to think. These days I don't believe that clarity is possible. For one thing belief is a snapshot of just that day since beliefs change and we also change our minds. So instead I use the fundamentalist chains binding my brain as a point of creative departure, as the context that generates (as it were) letters from prison sent to the outside world.

What's the most important take-home message for readers?

To be true to what I hope is the heart of the best of the universal religious message, I want to say that redemption through selflessness, hope, and love necessitates a new and fearless repudiation of the parts of holy books and traditions--be they Jewish, Christian, Muslim, or other--that bring us messages of hate, exclusion, racism, ignorance, misogyny, homophobia, tribalism, and fear. To find any spiritual truth within any religion's holy books, we must mentally edit them by the light God has placed in each of us.

As Anne Hutchinson put it at her trial, "The Lord knows that I could not open scripture; he must by his prophetical office open it unto me." Those who wish to live as Christians, Jews, Muslims, agnostics, or atheists by following the humble thread of what I'll call divine uncertainty, as opposed to those who wish to force others to be like them by using Christianity, Judaism, Islam, or doctrinaire secularism as a weapon, must shift from unquestioning faith in their books, the Bible, Qur'an, Torah, (or science) to a life-affirming message of transcendence.

Anything you had to leave out?

I'll reverse that question and answer it this way: I forced myself to include certain things in order to conform to the publishing reality these days that is less and less favorable to fiction or even to books!

In the best of all worlds, I'd find a way to tell all my stories as stories to people who love books as books. It was a compromise to meld the personal with the political. I'm very pleased with the result, but the parts of my book I enjoyed writing most were the stories not the explanations of those stories. It feels like a letdown to go from the freedom of storytelling (say, about why and where I had sex with an ice sculpture) to having to "prove" points by dragging facts onto the page (say, about my meetings with Rousas Rushdoony, the founder of the Reconstructionist movement and/or talking about working with Ronald Reagan on his "pro-life" book project).

What are some of the biggest misconceptions about your topic

I think they are the same misconceptions that infect all political/religious/moral "topics" these days: the illusion of progress. Chris Hedges says (rightly, I think) that we mistake advances in science for moral progress. So the misconception is that there is such a thing as modernity.

Dig a little and under every modern "issue" is a basic narrative that never changes. This is why Shakespeare is always on the cutting edge and always will be.

At risk of being too cute I'll add that life and the "big issues" really do boil down to sex, mom, and God. "Modernity" has changed nothing. We human animals seek out meaning that transcends the sum of our physical parts. That never changes. And we make the same mistakes in every age. What has changed is that the stakes have gotten intolerably high because of our growing capacity to do global harm.

Did you have a specific audience in mind when writing?

Anyone raised in a home where one or more parent or sibling was driven by a sense of passionate mission, be that of the left, right, religious, political or social. How does one separate one's self from a driven tribe?

Are you hoping to just inform readers? Give them pleasure? Piss them off?

All of the above. There is plenty to be informed about: religion and how it changes lives and shapes childhoods is basic information that social and political commentators ignore at their peril. (Think of all the relevant news stories the New York Times has not covered--say the early rise of the religious right--just because somewhere back there the Times' owners decided that religion wasn't relevant any longer!) The fact that I worked on this book for two years flat out for 15-plus hours a day, and took it through 28 full drafts shows that (besides being nuts), I certainly have done my utmost such as it is to give pleasure to readers. And if anyone can look at the way religion has treated and treats women and not be pissed off they have something wrong with them.

So, yes, I intend on pissing off every misogynist homophobic religious conservative and/or empire-building neo-conservative imperialist supporter of our permanent war economy stuck in the ideological straightjacket that I used to so proudly wear. But I'd also like to plant a seed that changes a few minds. I hope that someday a few right wing evangelical's anger gives way to the grudging thought "maybe Frank had a point." Maybe my book will help lead a few people to a better place: the embrace of blessed paradox. Or as I say in the book: "No one ever blew up a mosque, church, or abortion clinic after yelling, `I could be wrong.'"

What alternate title would you give the book?

Sex, Mom and God was my first and only title, though at one point I was thinking about another subtitle: "A Religiously Obsessed Sexual Memoir."

How do you feel about the cover?

Jonathan Sainsbury who designed it is brilliant. I love it.

Is there a book out there you wish you had written? Which one? Why?

The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov. It inspired me when I was a teen, made my mind race then and still does now. It's one of the best novels of the twentieth (or any) century and achieves a devastating and darkly funny social commentary informed by a spiritual intuitiveness that has not been matched.

What's your next book?

Perhaps something for or about children since the only part of each day that I enjoy with no second thoughts is when I play with my grandchildren. Nothing beats a tea party with a two-year-old who loves you unconditionally.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Book Review: Sex, Mom, & God By Frank Schaeffer


Book Review: Sex, Mom, & God By Frank Schaeffer

May 16, 2011
By Jason Easley

(This review was first posted on PoliticusUSA)

Sex, Mom, & God: How the Bible’s Strange Take on Sex Led to Crazy Politics–and How I Learned to Love Women (and Jesus) Anyway

by Frank Schaeffer

To say that Frank Schaeffer’s new book Sex, Mom, & God is just a book about politics, religion, and the motherly role of women in the family unit would be doing a grievous injustice to a work that alternates from heartwarming to thought provoking to laugh out loud funny.

Frank Schaeffer brilliantly guides the reader through an exploration of the Bible’s strange, intolerant, and sometimes frightening attitudes about sex, and how these Biblical teachings, through the evangelical grassroots of the Republican Party have come to dominate the GOP stance on any issue related to sex i.e. abortion, gay marriage, stem cell research, etc.

The heart and soul of this book is the author’s mother, Edith Schaeffer, “She presided over our household by glowing brightly for Jesus and exuding kindness for everyone she met, whoever they were. This kindness was genuine. Mom loved people the way hummingbirds are drawn to flowers. She fed them—both literally and spiritually—and in turn was fed.”

One of the many differences between the way Frank Schaeffer grew up and the evangelicals of today is that his mother was open about sex, and it was his mother’s openness that gave the author the unique insight that allowed him to have spent a part of his life as a member of the upper crust of the celebrity evangelical circuit, and the most insightful critic of modern American evangelical politics.

How does sex tie into evangelical politics? The evangelical belief in the literal nature of the bible has shaped political attitudes, “Since the 1970s the American culture wars have revolved around a fear of Sex and women no less insane and destructive than any horror story to come out of Afghanistan. The issues of gay rights, abortion, premarital sex, virginity, abstinence, and the “God-given role” of women (make babies, love Jesus, and shut up) have dominated our political/social debates. Why? Because sexual politics (American style) illustrates how deranged societies become when ideas about Sex are based on literal interpretations of the biblical “account” of the “facts” of existence.”

At its core Sex, Mom, & God is really three books. It is the tale of Frank Schaeffer’s own life journey with his sexuality. It is the story of a son’s relationship with his mother, and how that relationship has imparted lessons both consciously and unconsciously that the son carries with him for the rest of his life. And it is the story of the rise of the anti-abortion movement, and the institutionalized hate that has tainted the world view of many on the evangelical right.

It has come into vogue to not discuss the abortion issue, but Schaeffer explains that it is Roe v Wade that politicized the evangelical right, and abortion is the issue that fuels their hate, “To the post-Roe Right, hating the American government became the new patriotism. And, yes, other issues were involved besides Roe in goading Evangelicals and other members of the Right into a defensive crouch, but those issues—racial integration, a ban on prayer in public schools, gay rights, immigration and so on—paled in comparison to the slam-dunk blanket legalization of abortion when it came to stoking the flames of alienation.”

Schaeffer’s addresses how Sarah Palin has perfected the “holier than thou outsider victim approach,” the shooting of Rep Gabrielle Giffords, The Family, the Catholic Church sexual abuse scandal, and a real can’t miss part of the book is his thoughts on Franklin Graham. After having seen firsthand what extremism can do, Schaeffer has strong words for extremists on both sides of the abortion debate.

One of the traits of great writing is the ability to embrace the reader and take them on a journey. Frank Schaeffer’s writing style combines intelligence, warmth, humor, depth and insight. The book never overwhelms. Schaeffer never bores or bogs down. What Sex, Mom, & God offers is an engrossing story told in the most human of terms.

Sex, Mom, and God
is hands down one of the best non-fiction books of the year. Schaeffer has managed to outdo himself and top his well known previous bestseller Crazy For God. He is a masterful storyteller, and a truly unique talent.

Don’t miss out on this book.


T
o Order

Sex, Mom, and God...


click HERE

Monday, May 2, 2011

Bin Laden's Dead: Up Yours to Obama's "Real American" Critics!


An Open Letter to the Republican Liars Club:

This morning I got up at 4 AM to walk across the street to congratulate my Marine son (now home safe with his wife and two little children after 5 years service and war) on having been a small link in the chain of service that hunted down and killed bin Laden. I wanted to thank someone who wore the uniform of the US military. I also sent up yet another “up yours!” to the so-called “Real American” conservative critics of our president; those liars like Donald Trump, Michelle Bachmann, Sarah Palin et al who have nurtured the racist-motivated attacks on our first black president.

Was the SUCCESSFUL hunter of bin Laden a “secret Muslim”? Was he “born in Kenya”? Was he “soft on terrorism” or as far right religious leader/birther Franklin Graham put it giving radical Islam a “pass”?

I used to be a Republican until the party became to be the mouthpiece of not just “Birther” nuts like Trump but home to the loony conspiracy-driven far right “Death Panel” loons.

Unlike the neoconservative shills that drive us to war after war my son actually volunteered and served.

While the war-loving “neocons” pontificated on American "exceptionalism" and power and went to parties in Washington DC hosted by the defense industry I stayed up at night worrying while my son was shot at. He came home safe, but no thanks to Fox News and the other perpetual war shills who talk “patriotism” while other people’s children – mine for instance – do all the heavy lifting.

While in Afghanistan my son John worked in signals intelligence, went on secret missions looking for bin Laden and did his part with thousands of other heroes. Meanwhile back home liars and racists took over the Republican Party and told us our commander in chief wasn’t a real American. Outright lies were leveled again and again and the Republican “leadership” did nothing to shut the Birthers, Death Panel blatherers up.

A lunatic “Tea Party” was largely a reaction of white people unable to stomach the sight of a black man smarter than them sitting in the White House. That black man is leading our country out of a failed economy and also had the will and guts to kill our sworn enemy.

I know who the people are who aren’t “Real Americans” they are the unpatriotic liars wrapping themselves in the flag my son fought for and that they use to sell books, reality TV shows and their racist ideas with.

Today the American right wing phony patriots look smaller than ever, about as stupid as Trump's hair.