A good portion of the way driving across the country, I listened to Christian radio. I did this because I like seeking out things that make me angry. Also because talk radio keeps me awake better than music, and the only options in a lot of places are Christian talk or NPR. I listened to a lot of NPR too, but it wasn't as entertaining.
The thing that amazed me: it's all about sex! I listened to about 24 hours of Christian radio and probably 20 of those hours were about "family issues." Sex occupied a far, far greater timeslot than did prayer or charity or community news. And when I say "sex," I mean "orders about how to have sex." Or orders about how to act your gender, I'll lump that in here. It's all fucking orders, that's for sure.
(Something I want to clarify before I go further: my beef is with contemporary American Christian fundamentalist culture, not with Christianity. People's belief in Jesus and in the Bible is not the problem here and I don't want to denigrate the religion itself here. This is a cultural argument, not a theological one, and I have no more respect for "lol invisible sky man" than I do for "turn or burn, sinners!")
How To Have Sex According To Christian Radio:
-Obviously, don't have any before you're married. This is usually phrased in terms of high school kids, which makes it sound sort of reasonable, but then I realize--I'm still not married! Of course, if I were determined to be abstinent until marriage, I probably would have married Kevin back when I was a teenager, and wouldn't that be lovely, he'd be playing WoW in my basement instead of his mom's right now.
-Once married, you're stuck with it. Divorce is ungodly (Deuteronomy 24:1-4 was just a joke, God didn't really mean that). If you just can't get along, the solution is to get along, duhhh. The really unnerving part is the loop: "Well, what if he hits me?" "He shouldn't hit you, that's wrong." "But what if he does?" "He shouldn't!" As long as you can control people's behavior on every level, there's no need to make exceptions.
It's the same logic as staunch opposition to sex education and condoms--as long as everyone was perfect (by our standards) we wouldn't need these things! If someone wants to go ahead and be imperfect anyway... fuck 'em.
-Seriously, fuck 'em, because there's nothing that Christian radio hates more than "the world." "The world" is a terrible and debased place and the goal of life is to be better than "the world." If you were wondering where pornography and homosexuality and promiscuity and spaghetti-strap tops come from, the answer is "the world," which is Satan's domain.
-Oxytocin and vasopressin are God's Hormones. Any skin-to-skin contact with a member of the opposite sex releases God's Hormones, after which you are bound for life and leaving this person will make you miserable forever. For example (they really said this), if a woman hugs a man for more than twenty seconds, they will become bonded. This is why it's crucially important not to hug before marriage.
-You can prove anything via batshit-insane analogy. Masturbating is wrong because when you touch yourself, that's like pouring oil on the roof and setting a rabbit on fire. Trufax.
-Women and men are equal, they just have different roles to play. And men's role is to be in charge.
There's a very weird screwjob buried in the idea of traditional gender roles, and that is that women are expected to be subservient because their husband is supporting them--even when they're getting no such support. In a modern economy, it's a woman's role to keep house, raise the children, and joyfully submit to her husband--after she gets home from work! I have no desire to be a Happy Housewife under any circumstances, but being expected to act the Happy Housewife without even the luxury of being a housewife... goddamn.
-Marriage is between one man and one woman. The "one" is always in there, as if the polyamorists were beating down the gate of American society just as fast as the gays. (I wouldn't mind if they did, but that's another story.) Homosexuals ("ho-mah-seeehx-you-allls")have an agenda, and that agenda is to "promote the acceptance of homosexuality." Which, to be fair, is probably true.
At least in my random sampling of Christian radio stations, there wasn't much talk about why being gay is wrong--it mostly goes without saying. Because, ew, right? Not a lot of heavy analysis. Being gay is also very sexual--two men chastely holding hands with all their clothes on is basically public sex--so even if we have to tolerate it, at least please don't do it in front of the children.
Lesbians definitely do not exist. For women to desire women, they'd have to have sexual desire in the first place, and that's crazy talk. Women don't want sex, women want security.
The last quote I heard (and please, rack your brain for what on Earth this has to do with Christianity) before giving up and listening to NPR's fascinating three-hour coverage of the traditional knitting techniques of Estonia--"A woman's need for security is the closest thing she has to a man's sex drive."