For my own interest, here’s a small interaction of letters in my local paper, The Border Mail. Make of the exchange what you will. Yet we see that there’s easy opportunity to speak up and contribute. I was tempted to just dismiss the initial letter, but decided to spend a few minutes putting together a short response. I am glad for the openness to be printed, and I am glad that I said something.
And remember, someone will certainly get to speak – even if their arguments are laughably wrong.
Religion sows seeds of violence
DESPITE all the political facades and double talk, there is no legislation dealing with domestic violence.
In reality, the perpetrators of violent acts within the home are protected through a lack of law.
Let the point be clear, our politicians, our legal system has failed to take domestic violence seriously enough to legislate against it!
Why? Our Christian belief system says God is a male and white, man was made in the image of God, woman was extracted from the rib of man and must be subservient to him.
The apostles were all male and women have until recently been banned from higher order positions in the church; the Pope is male and always will be.
A man had the right to control his wife and even beat her up.
Surely this is where the seeds of domestic violence are sown.
For our politicians to legislate against domestic violence is virtually a breach of God’s words and orders of things as laid down through the Bible.
All contemporary religious institutions in effect support domestic violence through practised ideals that man is superior and in charge of woman.
In reality women are often treated badly in law when they speak out against domestic violence.
— ALAN J. LAPPIN,
Some in church still in denial
ALAN Lappin (The Border Mail, May 18) is right. Religion, including Christianity, contributes to the scourge of domestic violence.
The teaching of female submission to males, the promotion of male headship in church, home and society, has contributed to violence against women.
The church, finally, is starting to acknowledge this issue.
Many men who uphold this traditional teaching are as appalled as any that it is misused to justify violence, but it is indisputable that views which disempower women and elevate male authority contribute to this problem.
Yet, Mr Lappin demonstrates a simplistic understanding of the Bible’s teaching on male-female relationships.
The Genesis creation story affirms that humanity was created in God’s image, stating “male and female he (God) created them”.
This establishes the unity and equality of men and women as image-bearers of God. Jesus’ remarkable acceptance of women and even St Paul’s writings, where he exhorts husbands to love their wives self-sacrificially, and his missionary partnership with various women, sowed the seeds for women’s full participation and equal status in both church and home.
Sadly, the seeds have taken too long to sprout and many church traditionalists continual in denial and discrimination. Male headship and female subordination make no sense in contemporary society.
They are outmoded, oppressive and harmful.
— REV PETER McKEAGUE,
Anglican parish, Northern Albury
Alan, you are so far off track
ALAN Lappin’s letter (The Border Mail, May 18) on domestic violence is disturbingly wrong.
He first claims that there is no legislation for domestic violence. Please don’t believe him. Though we should improve laws, there is legal protection.
Then Alan goes on a bizarre tirade against Christianity.
In all the fine social groups I have been part of — education, sport, service, and church — churches are where I have heard greatest efforts to address domestic violence.
Christians follow Jesus, who gave his life to serve the lost and powerless. So protection of those in danger is natural topic to raise.
— CHRIS LITTLE,
Christ preached love for women
I AM writing in response to the letter of Alan J Lappin (The Border Mail, May 18) who laid the blame for domestic violence on the Christian belief system.
Christ was compassionate and respectful to the women he met and changed their lives for the better like no one else could.
Jesus accepted women when his society had cast them out.
Christianity does not teach that a man has the “right to control his wife and even beat her up” but, instead, a man is commanded to “love his wife as he loves himself” (Ephesians 5:33).
Christianity aims to uphold the rights of a woman and family relationships.
Domestic violence is a corruption of this and is condemned by Christians and Christianity.
— NANCY MASSEY,