PORTSIDE Archives

February 2019, Week 2

PORTSIDE@LISTS.PORTSIDE.ORG

Options: Use Monospaced Font
Show HTML Part by Default
Show All Mail Headers

Message: [<< First] [< Prev] [Next >] [Last >>]
Topic: [<< First] [< Prev] [Next >] [Last >>]
Author: [<< First] [< Prev] [Next >] [Last >>]

Print Reply
Subject:
From:
Portside <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Date:
Tue, 12 Feb 2019 20:11:32 -0500
Content-Type:
multipart/alternative
Parts/Attachments:
text/plain (7 kB) , text/html (19 kB)
 

 		 [Though opposition to abortion is what many think fueled the
powerful conservative white evangelical right, 81 percent of whom
voted for Donald Trump, it was really school integration, according to
Randall Balmer, chairman of the religion department ]
[https://portside.org/] 

 RACE, NOT ABORTION WAS THE FOUNDING ISSUE OF THE RELIGIOUS RIGHT  
[https://portside.org/2019-02-12/race-not-abortion-was-founding-issue-religious-right]


 

 Margery Eagan 
 February 5, 2018
The Boston Globe
[https://www.bostonglobe.com/opinion/2018/02/05/race-not-abortion-was-founding-issue-religious-right/A5rnmClvuAU7EaThaNLAnK/story.html]


	*
[https://twitter.com/intent/tweet/?url=https%3A//portside.org/2019-02-12/race-not-abortion-was-founding-issue-religious-right&text=Race%2C%20Not%20Abortion%20Was%20the%20Founding%20Issue%20of%20the%20Religious%20Right]
	*
[https://www.facebook.com/sharer/sharer.php?u=https%3A//portside.org/2019-02-12/race-not-abortion-was-founding-issue-religious-right]
	* 
	* [https://portside.org/node/19338/printable/print]

 _ Though opposition to abortion is what many think fueled the
powerful conservative white evangelical right, 81 percent of whom
voted for Donald Trump, it was really school integration, according to
Randall Balmer, chairman of the religion department _ 

 Henrietta Hilton, front left, daughter of tenant farmer William
Hilton, and her fellow students, are seen in their ninth grade
classroom in Summerton, S.C., June 4, 1954. , Rudolph Faircloth 

 

Here are some facts that might surprise you.

In 1971, two years before Roe v. Wade legalized abortion, the biggest
white evangelical group in America, the Southern Baptist Convention,
supported its legalization. The group continued that support through
much of the 1970s
[http://www.johnstonsarchive.net/baptist/sbcabres.html]. And the late
Jerry Falwell, founder of the Moral Majority, did not give his first
antiabortion speech
[http://www.slate.com/blogs/xx_factor/2014/05/29/the_religious_right_formed_around_support_for_segregation_not_against_abortion.html]
until 1978, five years after Roe.

Though opposition to abortion is what many think fueled the powerful
conservative white evangelical right, 81 percent of whom voted for
Donald Trump, it was really school integration, according to Randall
Balmer, chairman of the religion department at Dartmouth. The US
Supreme Court ruled public school segregation unconstitutional in
1954. In 1976 it ruled against segregated private schools. Then courts
went after the tax exemptions of these private all-white Southern
schools, or so-called segregation academies, like Falwell’s Liberty
Christian Academy.

The late Paul Weyrich, whom Balmer called the organizational genius
behind the religious right, had long tried to mobilize evangelical
voters around some hot-button issue: feminism, school prayer,
pornography, abortion. But nothing lit a fire like the federal
government’s threat to all-white schools. Only in 1979, a full six
years after Roe, did Weyrich urge evangelical leaders to also crusade
against abortion, Balmer said in an interview. That was, after all, a
far more palatable, acceptable crusade, one with a seeming high moral
purpose, unlike a race-based crusade against black children.

I mention all this because Politico recently reported
[https://www.politico.com/story/2018/01/22/trump-religious-activists-hhs-351735]
on the increasing power of religious ultra-conservatives in Trump’s
Department of Health and Human Services, and what that could soon mean
for further restrictions on abortion, birth control, and gay and
transgender protections.

“This administration is focused on recognizing one set of religious
beliefs,” Gretchen Borchelt of the National Women’s Law Center
told Politico. But why the one set of beliefs so out of step with the
rest of America? Though 70 percent of white evangelicals want abortion
illegal, the majority of other religious groups,
[http://www.pewforum.org/fact-sheet/public-opinion-on-abortion/]
including mainline Protestants, black Protestants, and Catholics, do
not.

This raises unsettling questions: How much of antiabortion rhetoric is
really about the unborn, and how much is a convenient and even cynical
cover for white evangelicals
[https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/acts-of-faith/wp/2017/12/13/there-was-an-enormous-gap-between-black-evangelical-voters-and-white-evangelical-voters-in-alabama/?utm_term=.1286e089f694]
to support, as they did, a white supremacist like Roy Moore, in
Alabama, or Trump himself, leader of the American birther movement and
defender of neo-Nazis in Charlottesville, Va.?

Balmer’s scholarship on the racial underpinnings of the religious
right — and the link between the antiabortion movement and a certain
political agenda — is more than familiar to a group of Americans who
overwhelmingly rejected both Moore and Trump. That would be black
evangelicals.

Among them is Cornell William Brooks, past national president of the
NAACP and a fourth-generation African Methodist Episcopal Church
minister who was arrested last year during an Alabama sit-in to
protest Trump’s then nominee for attorney general, Jeff Sessions.

“For Christian conservatives who put abortion at the top of their
list, the challenge becomes objecting to the loss of life in the womb
but also objecting to the loss of life beyond the womb,” said
Brooks, now a visiting professor at Boston University. “You cannot
segregate your compassion.

“Wring your hands over the child lost in the womb as well as the
loss of the child Tamir Rice,” the 12-year-old gunned down by a
police officer in Cleveland. “Be concerned about discrimination,
immigration, police misconduct, voter suppression, misogyny on the
lips of the president, black lives mattering, all lives mattering,”
Brooks said.

It is worth noting that some of the same white evangelical leaders who
just gave a pass to Trump for an alleged affair with a porn star
either supported him or kept mum after Charlottesville and after his
attacks on immigrants from what he called “shithole countries.”

Said Brooks, “We are not being candid with ourselves if we don’t
admit race has a lot to do with all this.”

Said Balmer, “The religious right is coming back to the founding
principles of a movement based in racism.”

_Margery Eagan is cohost of WGBH’s “Boston Public Radio.”_

	*
[https://twitter.com/intent/tweet/?url=https%3A//portside.org/2019-02-12/race-not-abortion-was-founding-issue-religious-right&text=Race%2C%20Not%20Abortion%20Was%20the%20Founding%20Issue%20of%20the%20Religious%20Right]
	*
[https://www.facebook.com/sharer/sharer.php?u=https%3A//portside.org/2019-02-12/race-not-abortion-was-founding-issue-religious-right]
	* 
	* [https://portside.org/node/19338/printable/print]

 

 		 

 		 

 INTERPRET THE WORLD AND CHANGE IT 

 		 

 		 

 Submit via web [https://portside.org/contact/submit_to_portside] 
 Submit via email 
 Frequently asked questions [https://portside.org/faq] 
 Manage subscription [https://portside.org/subscribe] 
 Visit portside.org [https://portside.org/]

 Twitter [https://twitter.com/portsideorg]

 Facebook [https://www.facebook.com/Portside.PortsideLabor] 

 		 

 


https://portside.org/privacy-policy

To unsubscribe, click the following link:
https://lists.portside.org/cgi-bin/listserv/wa?SUBED1=PORTSIDE


ATOM RSS1 RSS2