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The Toronto Star

Conservatives Sweeping 'Liberal Bias' From Bible

Lo, last week, when news of the Conservative Bible Project broke on Twitter, the Tweeple rang out with sarcasm.

Progressives fired off fake verses one might find rewritten by the "family values'' fundamentalists behind Conservapedia, the so-called "trustworthy'' online information source for all things right-wing.

Verily I say unto thee, these U.S. conservatives, led by Andy Schlafly, begat by Phyllis Schlafly, best known for stopping the equal rights for women amendment, consider modern translations of the Bible to contain too much "liberal bias.''

For example, the "economic parables'' aren't suffused with sufficient – I kiddeth thee not – "full free-market meaning.''

To take that to its logical anti- socialist conclusion, when Jesus fed those two little fishes and five loaves of bread to the multitude, he should have charged the going market rate.

No wonder the lefty-libs on Twitter launched their snark attacks.

"Let my people GOP!''

"I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence I can see Russia."

"Physician, heal thyself. And your patients without insurance should heal themselves, too."

"Suffer the little `preborn' children to come unto me, and forbid them not dominion of women's bodies."

Now, you'd think that, considering all the fundamentalist keening and wailing over, as many of them deem it, the abortion "holocaust,'' the Bible has lots to say about the termination of pregnancy.

But it doth not, not according to some serious theological scholars.

In fact, according to the Washington-based Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice, which has many papers published on its website, one of the few places it is mentioned is Exodus 21:22-25 – and even there, the pregnant woman is considered to have "greater moral and religious worth than the fetus.''


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Yes, surprisingly, there are indeed people of faith who believe that abortion is a choice "a woman must make for herself in keeping with her faith, beliefs, conscience, and her own personal situation."

Yet, if you saw those "Life Chain'' demonstrators on street corners all over town two Sundays ago, with signs equating abortion to murder, you would think that religious groups have no regard at all for women's lives, health, independence or, if you believe in that sort of stuff, souls.

That despite how Genesis 2:7 states: "Then the Lord God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul."

Which corresponds with Canada's legal definition of personhood, which states, in much less florid language, that life begins after birth.

The thing about so many of these anti-choicers is, while they profess to be pro-life, most are doing little or nothing to ensure that no child is born unwanted, or that women get the support they need if they do go to term.

Such as state-funded daycare.

Instead, it's about taking women back to – conservative – Bible times. How else to explain why they also advocate abstinence-only sex education? Why not appeal to their church leaders to drop their prohibitions against contraception?

In fact, many of these groups insist that, if a woman has sex, she should face the consequences – as if having a baby as punishment is a good reason to be a mother.

As for the woman, she doesn't matter.

According to numbers released Tuesday by the Guttmacher Institute, a world-renowned research and policy institute on reproductive health, every year, illegal abortions result in 70,000 deaths, with an additional five million women getting treatment for complications resulting from unsafe abortions.

Would Jesus want that?

Oh yes, say the Conservative Bible Project backers who insist that the scriptures be rewritten to kill the "pervasive and hurtful myth that Jesus would be a political liberal today.''

God help America.

Antonia Zerbisias

Antonia Zerbisias is a former columnist for the Toronto Star and is the co-creator of #BeenRapedNeverReported.


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