Liveblogging the Women in Secularism Conference III

Lunch

12:30 How can incorrect data at congressional hearings?

One of the most important things we can do is correct the record.

How do you answer the comments that Stanton and Anthony were anti abortion?

Abortion was illegal and women died when they were done. They would not be anti abortion today. Medical science is just so different now than then.

Any reason why people lose authority when speaking on feminism and atheism?

I’m beginning to think we should read the comments in the internet. If people can only talk about I’m an atheist, what is the point of the movement? Social progress has come from people willing to criticize religion. It was about promoting reason and science and condemning bad practices. Slavery, Capital Punishment. We mean nothing if we don’t stand for progress in civilization. What do we build.

When did special treatment for religious organizations start?

1820s? Lobbying congress. Used to get mail on Sunday, but they stopped that. Didn’t know that. Theocrats knew the constitution was secular and pushed against.

Is it possible to be a religious feminist?

There’s a bifurcation there, they haven’t applied feminist critical thinking to religion. UUC and UU are creedless and easier to understand that overlap. Have they read the bible?

Should we promote these events as promiscuous assemblies? lulz

How did we get here?

Religion sanctified sexism. Religion is the greatest threat because it reaches beyond the grave.

Slutshaming?

The language in the bible about women is pornographic in the worst way, the sexual reviling of women in the bible, that’s where it comes from. That women are owned by men and they can tell us what to wear and rate us sexually and control our worth.

The bible rules permit promiscuity for men. Double standard is throughout the bible, including the NT.

Do you think the War on Women is the last big gasp for the religious right with the growth of secularism?

I’m not that optimistic, but they are desperate to keep us in control and go back to theocracy.

Lilith, first wife and feminist, do you know a history?

She’s apocryphal and a lot of fun.

These questions are delightfully short and to the point and not arguments.

Suggestions on getting hispanic women to get involved?

The most radical thing a freethinker can do is to come out. Let people know. Imagine the ripple effects. Atheists are at the bottom of the social pole, they haven’t changed in 50 years. Why? Many people have never knowingly met an atheist. Not enough to come out of the closet, you have to leave the house.

12:16 Anne Nicol Gaylor nothing fails like prayer

Sherry Matulis abortion advocate nearly died from a botched illegal abortion. poet.

Sonia Johnson From housewife to heretic. Mormon woman who called them to task for defeated the era. Her fantasy that no woman would go to church.

Barbara Enrenreich Think for yourself

Katha Pollitt writes for the Nation, wrote Reasonable Creature.

Taslima Nasrin Religion is the great oppressor and should be abolished.

Alice Walker essay about the bible

Ursula K LeGuin

Wendy Kaminer NPR

Ann Dryuan Sagan’s widow

Natalie Angier NYTimes

Sara Paretsky mystery writer

Ayaan Hirsi Ali writer of Infidel

Robin Morgan

Julia Sweeney Letting Go of God

Then people here.

12:10 Harriet Martineau first sociologist. Put her own name on her books.

Lydia Maria Child wrote Over the hills and through the woods.

Margaret Fuller transcendentalist. Died at age 40. Woman in the 19th century. Give me truth, cheat me by no illusion

George Eliot (Marion Evans) Very religious as young woman and lost her faith and stopped going to church as a teenager and her father kicked her out of the house. Human relationships are more important than dogma.

Elmina Slenker quaker.

Ouida Marie Lousie de la Ramee was as popular as Eliot. The dog of flanders. “The Failure of Christianity”

Sharlot Hall

Zona Gale

Ella Wheeler Wilcox poet

Charlotte Perkins Gilman “The Yellow Wallpaper”. Wrote “His religion and hers” 1923. What glory is there for an omnipotent being to torture and subjugate a lesser being, like humans torturing ants

Lucy N Coleman abolitionist. Always mobbed by ringleaders of ministers

Etta Semple and Laura Knox Kansas used to be the hotbed of Freethought. Town radical and then opened a hospital and never turned away tramps or fallen women. Controversial, against blue laws and capital punishment.

Susan Wixon freethought has always been the best friend that women have

Marilla M Ricker worked with Ingersoll, was an attorney.

Annie Besant. Shaw called her the greatest orator in England, possibly Europe. Had a bizarre conversion to theosophy.

Hypatia Bradlaugh Bonner running secular movements, working for many progressive causes. heresy makes for progress

Voltarine de Cleyre. Father converted to Catholicism and sent her to convent. She became a teenage freethought speaker. Talked about sex slavery and women owning their own bodies. Converted to Anarchism after bombings. God is deaf and his church is our worst enemy.

Emma Goldman. Crusader for birth control.

Lucy Parsons anarchist, may have been a former slave married Alan Parson after Hay Market Killings and he was then killed.

Margaret Sanger No Gods, No masters. Persecuted, jailed, censored, shunned. Introduced diaphrams. Helped create pill.

Marian Sherman MD missionary in India. A believer is not a thinker and a thinker is not a believer.

Dora Russell, married to Bertrand

Meridel Le Sueur

Queen Silver magazine. child lecturer challenged William Jennings Bryan to a debate, he did not accept.

Margaret Knight lectures on BBC about why kids shouldnt be raised with religion

Butterfly McQueen aka Prissy in GWTW, an atheist from early years

Vashti Cromwell McCollum took first case against religious instruction in schools and won it in 1948. “One woman’s fight”

Ruth Hermence Green skeptic guide to bible. “The christian torture symbol” to describe cross. There was a time when religion ruled the world it was called the dark ages.

11:50 Elizabeth Cady Stanton. Wrote Women’s Bible, which made her a pariah. She pointed to the church as the fountain of all anti-woman policies.

Susan B Anthony believed only in the creed of perfect equality.

Matilda Joslyn Gage part of the triumvirate of these. She founded a separation of church and state group, the first and short-lived. Wrote Woman, State and Church, which covered the history of the church hurting women. (1893)

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11:45 The women’s movement was founded by women freethinkers. The churches opposed freedoms for women. Unsurprisingly. Women without Superstition is the book. It’s out of print and will be back next week. It’s limited to English speaking women who left writing, so it’s quite limited. British and American women mostly.

She has a power point. Woe to the Women, that’s a book. Eve was framed.

Anne Hutchinson first up. First heretic in North America, if you exclude Native Americans, but first out and out intentional heretic. She had meetings for women in her home, and some men came as well. And she got in a lot of trouble. Banished for sedition and heresy. Excommunicated and cast out as an American Jezebel. She had a settlement in Rhode Island briefly with a secular constitution.

Mary Wollstonecraft wrote about rationalist and into reason. Treat women as rational creatures. Died at 38 after giving birth to her daughter who wrote Frankenstein.

Frances Wright. Scottish heiress. First woman to address promiscuous assembles aka men and women. Abolitionist, women rights, edited “Free Inquirer” magazine, and atheist. Red harlot of infidelity. Awesome name, I think I should change my name. “Fill the vacuum of your mind!” turn your churches into halls of science.

Ernestine L Rose daughter of a polish rabbi. Canvasser for women’s rights. Also an outspoken atheist, probably the most in the 19th century. I was a rebel by the time I was 5. She kept her hair in ringlets. Her dad told her not to comb her hair on the sabbath and she said she would ask god. She did and said he didn’t say anything. Lollercoasters. In 1848 the married women’s property rights passed. Major speaker. Very famous and committed, the Gloria Steinem of her day. All children are atheists and would remain so without indoctrination.

11:38 Annie Laurie Gaylor and her mother had their eyes opened to atheism and anti-dogma POV by working on feminist issues and seen how their Wisconsin government was controlled by the Catholics. Freethought is a new concept, historically.

Voltaire was his own ACLU. He couldn’t save the life of a boy who failed to tip his hat to a religious procession. The consequence for women in this atmosphere.

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11:30 By the end of this year, all of the states will have a state chapter. Starting in June. There are only two chapters right now. They will be doing local lobbying and conference calls. They all have websites already. I wish this was exciting.

Federal action that impacts women negatively

Violence against women act
trafficking women
contraception mandate

There’s a photo of a sign from the reason rally with get religion out of my underwear sign and the woman holding it is the audience, she gets an applause

Preventative health service mandate
Big backlash against contraception mandate despite there are bazillions of reasons they are good for women
(I learned this week that hormonal contraception increases bone density, YES. Hurray annual exams? Good news, my ladybits are all good. Not TMI because it’s a women’s conference, deal/)

Educate, Influence and Share are her main goals.

Now onto State actions

6 states allow pharmacists to refuse to fill (YEAH SC)
21 states offer exemptions from contraceptive covverage
Only 18 states require sex ed to be medically accurate

National movement
Weekly Call every Thursday at Noon starting June
559 726 1300 code 199568

@seculardotorg

Promoting online stuff. Her email is edwina@secular.org
Cell: 202 674 7800
Office: 202 299 1091 ext207

And she exits quickly to catch a train to leave.

11:21 Edwina is up. She has the first Power Point. She is just going to talk about what the SCA is, as far as I can tell. She is definitely not Sean Faircloth in terms of exciting people. Reading hardcore from the power point. *deep breath* OK.

I talked to her a bit earlier, she is very talking pointy on setting up state affiliates. Gets a clap for saying we need many more allies and supporting groups. There aren’t many.

They are involved in several coalitions in DC. CARD, NCPE, SIECUS, National Advisory Board, IFPC, LCCR..

Key issues: Health and safety, education, military, tax policy, discrimination.

No denying care based on personal belief
No denying coverage
Religious child abuse
Religious substance abuse programs

Public funding of religious schools
School discrimination
Religion in public school curricula
Religious coercion of students

Military Chaplains (this is what we lobbied at the SCA thing last year)
Spiritual fitness

Religious tax exemptions

Day of prayer
So help me God
etc

Yes, this is just a list.

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11:11 We’re in the middle of a break.  Edwina is our first talk up after it.  So.  Yeppers.

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About ashleyfmiller

I write, give occasional speeches, and am currently getting my PhD in Mass Communications from South Carolina. Before going back to school, I worked in Los Angeles in reality tv, web series, and film.

Posted on May 19, 2012, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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