Flipping through the WashPost over the weekend I read their article on Ruth Bell Graham. Halfway through I stumbled through these two paragraphs:
Being a pastor’s wife, particularly an evangelical Christian pastor’s wife, is one of the hardest jobs there is. Not only are you expected to obey and serve your husband, you’re supposed to like doing so, and on the occasions you don’t, keep quiet about it. Close friends are hard to come by because there is so much you’re not supposed to discuss.
But it’s a mark of Ruth’s inner steel and religious conviction that once she and Billy exchanged vows at the little Presbyterian church in Montreat, N.C., she never looked back, nor, as far as anyone could tell, regretted her decision. What might seem to many like oppression in fact set her free to shape a life that included, but by no means was limited to, a man she deeply loved.
I did a double and triple take… “not only are you expected to obey and serve your husband, you’re supposed to like doing so…”; “..seem to many like oppression….”
This is the kind of tone and language that is so grating because it carries with it a snideness and an arrogance that is so offensive to conservative Christians. There is the use of “serve” and “obey” – buzzwords for the argument that Christian women are little more than servants. There is the word “oppression.” Yikes.
Imagine this same sort of verbiage and attitude in an article about other groups? I submit that there would be great gnashing of teeth.