The decision about to be handed down by the Supreme Court allowing states to outright ban abortion is a sexist one made mostly by men. These men have made up their minds about what a woman can or can’t do with their bodies. They’re not legislating what men can or can’t do with their bodies. Four of the five justices in the majority on this are Catholics. While 23 percent of the nation identifies as Catholic, six out nine of the current Supreme Court justices practice Catholicism.
Conservatives will point out that one of the justices voting to ban abortion is a woman. Yes, Amy Coney Barrett is a woman and one of the Catholics on the bench. But, she’s not just a Catholic. She’s also a member of People of Praise, a network of ecumenical intentional communities. What the hell is an intentional community? Think of it like a commune where everyone works toward the same goals, but spread out across the nation…and fanatical. It’s a cult. Many members do live together and seek advice/permission from leadership on everything from their household budget to whom they should marry. Members agree to submit to the leadership of a spiritual director and affirm a 181-word “covenant” that they frequently recite together. “We will serve one another and the community as a whole in all needs: spiritual, material, financial,” it reads in part. One former member of the cult said “The social scene was extremely Republican, very much Rush Limbaugh.” Nice.
For a story about the “covenant,” The New York Times attempted to interview current members of the group who didn’t respond to requests for interviews or declined to speak, citing concerns about privacy. Isn’t it special that the cult Amy Coney Barrett is a member of is concerned about PRIVACY? No, wait. They’re only concerned about the cult’s privacy.
In People of Praise, women are encouraged to work and have careers, but also to be subservient to men in a Christian tradition. Women can not hold leadership positions in the cult except as “woman leaders,” which is a position that teaches other women about their roles in the cult. Until 2017, “woman leader” was called “handmaiden.” They changed it after a TV adaptation of “A Handmaid’s Tale” gave the term a negative impression kinda in the same way Proud Boys, Oathkeepers, and Republicans eschew the term “Nazi.”
In the directory for one of the cult’s divisions in South Bend, Indiana, Amy Coney Barrett is listed as a “handmaid.” Maybe they just don’t use the term “handmaid” in public.
People are comparing this abortion ban to “A Handmaid’s Tale.” Meanwhile, we literally have a Supreme Court justice who identifies as a handmaiden. I find it incredulous that Amy Coney Barrett will ever cast a vote that would get her kicked out of this cult she’s been a member of since birth. A religious cult has a vote on the Supreme Court.
A document from the group titled “Men and Women in the People of Praise” says in one part that being the head of the household does not give a husband a license to dominate, but a wife “should take her husband’s direction seriously.” A husband’s responsibilities include “correcting” his wife should she stray from the proper path.
Of course, one of the Catholics on the court is Samuel Alito, who is writing the majority opinion banning abortions, arguing the word “abortion” is not in the Constitution. Based on that logic, everything that’s not mentioned in the Constitution from cars to airplanes to movie theaters to birth control to gay marriage to pop rocks are unconstitutional. Alito is “correcting” the Constitution and ordering the women in this nation not to stray from the proper path.
I wonder if People of Praise are as opposed to pop rocks as much as they are against gay marriage. Yes, Amy Coney Barrett believes gay marriage is a sin. Are sins constitutional? In fact, children of same-sex marriages are not allowed into the cult’s private schools. Is that sort of discrimination constitutional?
My point here is, we’re in trouble. While this decision wasn’t voted on entirely by men, you gotta take into account that the one woman voting to destroy abortion rights for women is in a male-dominated fundamentalist religious cult.
Creative note: I sketched out nine cartoons on the abortion case Thursday. And, I actually like most of them. I showed them all to Laura, one of my copy editors, and she said I should do a series and draw each one. I don’t think so but you will eventually see each of them.
Music note: I was able to listen to the entire Blue Album from Weezer while coloring this cartoon, plus six more songs from the Green Album and Maladroit.
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