On “unconditional” love with conditions

To all of you who comment - I love you guys. You frequently say things that are really insightful, things that make me think. Reader Anotherone made just such a comment recently regarding fundamentalist parents and conditional love: I think a lot of fundamentalist parents love their children in supremely conditional ways, and the lightning fast retraction of that love comes right after the phrase, spoken with sickening gravity, “we need to talk.” At least, that’s how it was for my family.Of … [Read more...]

Purity Section Complete

I’ve just completed the section under another tab — purity. You can view this section either by clicking the tab itself (“Purity,” in the middle of the tabs immediately below the header) or by clicking here.As you will see, the section offers a basic summary of what I call the "purity culture,"followed by pages containing key posts and resources (websites, books, and articles).Please let me know if there is anything you think should be added to this section, or anything I could do to impr … [Read more...]

A reader asks: Am I angry at my parents?

A reader recently asked about my feelings towards my parents: Do you harbor any feelings of *resentment* towards your parents because they indoctrinated you? In previous posts you have used some harsh language to describe your upbringing, how it hurt you emotionally then, how it has hurt you emotionally now. Do you target any feelings of anger back at your parents? Some other atheists and I recently discussed this online, and most of them felt sorry for their parents and a bit disappointed in … [Read more...]

Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts: Losing the Boy Scouts

In Part 1 I discussed the recent media attention given to opposition to the Girl Scouts, in Part 2 I discussed the longer roots of this opposition, and in Part 3 I discussed how my perceptions of the Girl Scouts have changed. I'm now going to turn to the Boy Scouts.Even as I was taught to associate the Girl Scouts with lesbianism and paganism, I grew up believing that the Boy Scouts was an upstanding, worthwhile organization. Based on faith in God and love of country, the Boy Scouts was held … [Read more...]

Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts: Finding the Girl Scouts

In Part 1 I discussed the recent media attention given to opposition to the Girl Scouts and in Part 2 I gave some background to this opposition. I'm now going to discuss how my perceptions of the Girl Scouts have changed in the last ten years as I moved from opponent to supporter and why.When the recent media attention began, the first part I heard about was the Girl Scouts' admission of a transgender girl. Ten years ago, I would have been horrified. Ten years ago, I viewed anything outside … [Read more...]

Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts: The “Evils” of Girl Scouts

In Part 1 I discussed recent media attention given to opposition to the Girl Scouts, but as an excellent Slate article points out, and as my experience verifies, this opposition has been going on for years. Conservatives have long been accusing the Girl Scouts of promoting "witchcraft," "lesbianism," and "paganism," as well as of being a subversive tactical arm of Planned Parenthood or even the United Nations. In fact, there are a myriad of websites detailing the Girl Scouts' links to Planned Par … [Read more...]

Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts: The Recent Controversy

A few weeks ago an image started circulating on facebook, urging people not to buy girl scout cookies or support the girl scouts. Here it is below:On facebook at least, I saw a lot of shock, not at the girl scouts but at the people who put together this flier. Who could be against the girl scouts? my friends asked incredulously. Girl scouts are cute! And they sell cookies! And they do nice things! But I wasn't shocked or the least surprised, because none of this was new to me. … [Read more...]


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