Three’s a Trend

You only have to have been following Andrew Sullivan’s blog this past week to notice a theme.

Mark Kirkorian: “Our commander-in-chief is an effete vacillator who is pushed around by his female subordinates […] Obama’s pusillanimity has been hugely magnified by the contrast with the women directing his foreign policy and the fact that they nagged him to attack Libya until he gave in.”

Frank Gaffney: “I am praying that Barack Obama and his anti-Israel troika of female advisors will not take us all down a road that seems ripe for another, ominous application of this precedent”

Sullivan himself: “This is Clinton’s war, launched on entirely emotional and irrational grounds.”

Weird, huh? Why is it so important that we know this is a girly war? Clinton doesn’t want a second term. By all accounts she has no interest in running for higher office again. Why… oh, why would these conservative men be so hung up on making sure we all know that having a girl with the power to command armies is so terrible?


I just can’t think of why conservative men would want to run down women’s leadership and make the prospect of women controlling the military seem frightening.

I mean, you’d think that, if they were afraid of some woman being in a leadership position, they’d just come out and say something like, “Man, wouldn’t it be scary if she were in charge?” instead of having to make it seem like there’s something uniquely fucked up about any woman having a leadership position, right? I mean, there can’t be… at least, I’m blanking on one… some woman the right is totally fixated on, who the base loves, but the leadership is afraid and mortified by, maybe someone taking a foreign trip right now, embarrassing herself all around the world?


Just not thinking of anybody these fools could be so afraid of that they have to slur all women rather than risk taking her on directly. Or in Sullivan’s case, that he’s willing to slur all women in order to also take on some woman he’s been taking on directly. So, I guess Sullivan is less of a fool.

But still.

Apparently getting girl-cooties all over our invasion of Libya has spoiled some folks’ whole week.




Asherah, Queen of Heaven

I don’t mean to be a downer about an exciting “find” like God’s wife, but didn’t we know this? I thought it was pretty widely and commonly understood that a lot of what’s going on in the Old Testament is the definition of a group of people by establishing rules, customs, and beliefs that would differentiate them from their neighbors. And, am I wrong, or do they not spend some substantial time in the Old Testament telling the folks in this community to stop worshiping other gods and burning down and destroying the Queen of Heaven’s holy things?

I mean, this isn’t even an interpretation or speculation, like the scholars who posit that the creation story of Eve and the fruit and the tree and the snake is all symbolic of moving away from polytheism and the eminence of Asherah into monotheism and the eminence of God. This is literally “they went to that temple and burned the sacred trees of the Queen of Heaven.” Not “of the neighboring tribe’s Queen of Heaven.” People within their own group were worshiping her and the worship had to be stamped out.

Well, if she was the Queen of Heaven and God is the King… I mean, I don’t mean to make a case for willful blindness here, but this really can’t be a surprise.

On the other hand, it makes the Bible a lot more soap-opera-like if we imagine the Old Testament is the story of a very messy divorce in which God got custody of the Jewish people (we’ll gloss over how that makes the New Testament the story of God’s rebound affair with a teenage girl and what came of it).

But let’s have our minds blown a little just for fun. Over on Wikipedia, they say that Asherah was not just known as the Queen of Heaven, but in the Ugaritic texts was described as “She who treads on the sea.” Makes you wonder just who was moving upon the face of the water in Genesis 1:2, doesn’t it?