Larry Solomon and ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ – Marrying Young Girls

Larry Solomon and ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ – Marrying Young Girls May 27, 2019
Mass marriage scene from ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’

So now we know where Lori Alexander of The Transformed Wife found that article saying that ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ is Biblical.  At least parts of it are according to Lori. From everyone’s least favorite champion of taking away rights from women, Larry Solomon of Biblical Gender Roles.

At least Larry has bothered to read the book and it sounds like he may have seen the Hulu series as well. Lori only read a synopsis of the earlier movie of the book. She hasn’t read the actual book or seen the new series.

I’ve spent considerable time reading through Larry’s interpretation of the book, and he seems to be extrapolating out things that are not entire clear in the movie, book or series, such as claiming that the handmaidens are all women who have either been in a second marriage or living with a man without the benefit of marriage. Either I completely blanked reading the book, or Larry is making things up again. The series and book seemed to make the case that if you were not a Commander’s wife and you were deemed to be fertile you would be pressed into service as a handmaid.

I can see I’m going to have to reread the book and take a second look at the series this week to see how much of Larry’s description lives up with the source material.

Larry runs a horrific listening of all the things done in Gilead that he is perfectly fine with, execution of gay men, but not lesbians, execution of abortion doctors, women who cheat on their partners and seizing ownership and control of all female owned assets. But it’s not until Larry reaches the point of the mass wedding that things go very creepy and wrong.

The same mass marriage scene from a different take.

In the scene in both the book and the series there is a mass wedding of girls who seem between the ages of 12 and 15, to the Guardians. Most of the Guardians are much older than the girls, some as much as double their ages. The scene shows men all the way up to their 50s marrying prepubescent girls.

Here’s what Larry says about that:

I have already addressed the fact that the nation of Gilead was wrong in usurping the authority of father’s over their daughters.  But what if fathers willingly gave their young daughters, even those in their early teens as portrayed in arranged marriages to older men – is this a violation of Biblical morality?

The answer is a resounding NO. It is not immoral or “abhorrent” or “horrific” in the eyes of God.  The Scriptures tell us in two passages when God says a young woman is ready for marriage.

In the book of Ezekiel God portrays his marriage to Israel as an older man taking a young woman who has shown the signs of puberty as his wife:

and this other horrific tidbit:

The phrase “if she pass the flower of her age” refers to if she has had a period.

So, God’s allowable age for marriage to a woman is when she shows the signs of puberty, development of her breasts, growth of pubic hair and she has had a period.  At that point it is perfectly moral for her to be married.

And her “consent” is not required by God.  And God does not grant her the “agency” that we believe women have today. It is her father’s decision (Exodus 22:16-17).  And there is absolutely nothing unbiblical about arranged marriages (Jeremiah 29:6).  Also, it is not immoral for men much older to marry younger women.

Why is it always these creeps, like Vaughn Ohlman,imaging young burgeoning breasts and periods as a marker for readiness? Notice that none of them view young boys of that age as ready for marriage. When they talk of men marrying it’s always men over the age of 21, while saddling them with a much too young girl.

It’s pornographic, it’s obscene that this is their determination on sexual readiness for marriage. In the earlier seasons of ‘Game of Thrones’ Queen Cersei and her son  Joffrey were waiting for Sansa Stack’s ‘first flowering’ before arranging a wedding. Sansa, knowing this was her fate, did everything she could to hide this from both of them. Early marriage was more a reality in royalty than in common folks in real life and fiction.

In the United States this age can come at a very young time in a girl’s life. Menstruation ages have dropped, meaning what Larry is proposing here is that girls as young as 9 could be married.

My own cycle started at 11 years old, and I can tell you I was nowhere near ready to marry. I was still playing with my Barbies, riding my horse, going to Camp Fire Girls meetings, and giggling over how cute Donny Osmond was. My only adult actions and responsibilities revolved around caring for my horse.

Little girls should be free to ride their horses, or play with their dolls and coloring books, not forced into lifetime relationships and sex.  We’ve talked about this so much here that I’m not even going to cite the statistics again that show how early marriage harms girls in every way, physically, emotionally, financially.

Besides, we all know that it is unlikely in a Gilead that Larry would even qualify for his own Econowife much less anything better.

Some ideas need to stay fiction, this is one of those.

I leave you with this, Larry’s take on why Gilead happened and why something similar seems to be on track in the United States. Larry does not say it, but his idea of Biblical Gender Roles includes sexually abusing little girls.

The real problem that caused the collapse of the United States in the Handmaid’s Tale is the same problem that might actually cause the collapse of the United States in the not so distant future.  And that problem is the widescale abandonment of traditional gender roles which I would argue are Biblically based.


Stay in touch! Like No Longer Quivering on Facebook:

If this is your first time visiting NLQ please read our Welcome page and our Comment Policy! Commenting here means you agree to abide by our policies.

Copyright notice: If you use any content from NLQ, including any of our research or Quoting Quiverfull quotes, please give us credit and a link back to this site. All original content is owned by No Longer Quivering and Patheos.com

Read our hate mail at Jerks 4 Jesus

Check out today’s NLQ News at NLQ Newspaper

Contact NLQ at SuzanneNLQ@gmail.com

Comments open below

NLQ Recommended Reading …

Quiverfull: Inside the Christian Patriarchy Movement by Kathryn Joyce

I Fired God by Jocelyn Zichtermann

13:24 A Dark Thriller by M Dolon Hickmon

About Suzanne Titkemeyer
Suzanne Titkemeyer went from a childhood in Louisiana to a life lived in the shadow of Washington D.C. For many years she worked in the field of social work, from national licensure to working hands on in a children's residential treatment center. Suzanne has been involved with helping the plights of women and children' in religious bondage. She is a ordained Stephen's Minister with many years of counseling experience. Now she's retired to be a full time beach bum in Tamarindo, Costa Rica with the monkeys and iguanas. She is also a thalassophile. She also left behind years in a Quiverfull church and loves to chronicle the worst abuses of that particular theology. She has been happily married to her best friend for the last 32 years. You can read more about the author here.

Browse Our Archives

Follow Us!


TRENDING AT PATHEOS Nonreligious
What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • Nightshade

    IIRC Offred was in what Gilead considered an adulterous marriage since he had divorced his wife and married her, and she was forced into being a handmaid, or going to the colonies. That doesn’t necessarily mean only those women became handmids, but it was one excuse used.

    Also, he says ‘We must take away the rights America has granted to women since the mid-1800s. This means taking away women’s right to own property and limiting the ability of women to work and earn money. It means placing restrictions on how many women may enter higher education. In other words, it means making women completely dependent on men for their economic provision. And it absolutely means taking away women’s right to vote.’ I don’t know about anyone else, but for me now it’s war on Larry and his ilk. I’m done with these men. I’m just DONE.

  • GeckoShamelessRaceMixer

    Yes, it’s perfectly moral for a thirteen year old to die in childbirth because she is not physically ready for it. So what, she’s expendable. I guess that attitude towards the poor girl doesn’t surprise me as much as that attitude towards the unborn child, which they are normally very defensive of.

  • GeckoShamelessRaceMixer

    Seriously.

  • Mimc

    Being made a handmaid did seem to be a punishment for “immorality”. It wasn’t just adultery or remarriage. Offred’s friend was a lesbian and I think there was mention of activists too. Any women they wanted to punish and believed to be furtile. Others were sent to colonies to clean up radiation. The radiation pollution and widespread infertility crisis was what actually caused the US to collapse. So if Larry believes it was lack of adherence to stick gender roles then I’m not sure he really did read the book.

  • Mimc

    I forgot there other punishment for misbehaved women was to force them into service at the secret brothels the commanders frequented.

  • Astreja

    War against patriarchy? I’m in. No quarter, no surrender.

  • Cynthia

    Margaret Atwood has said that she didn’t include anything in the novel that hasn’t been done somewhere, sometime to women.

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/bbcthree/article/c7bbe6fc-f452-4015-acdb-719ff8e5d389

    So OF COURSE Larry is being a total creepy pig, as always. But there is a tiny kernel of truth when he says that some of this stuff was biblically okay – because Atwood took inspiration in part from biblical stories. The difference is that Atwood sees fundamentalists influencing law and controlling society as something terrifying.

    (As a Canadian, it’s a bit weird that stuff we read in high school in the 1980s has become a show that Americans watch and a pop culture phenomenon – but it is doing its job as dystopian literature well.)

  • Cynthia

    An article by Margaret Atwood on A Handmaid’s Tale, from 2017. Well worth a read.

    https://www.google.ca/amp/s/www.nytimes.com/2017/03/10/books/review/margaret-atwood-handmaids-tale-age-of-trump.amp.html

  • Hannah

    “Give me liberty or give me death.” That is my hill, which I will die upon. I have no daughters of my own, but I’ll fight for my niece and all the young girls I know and don’t know so they can continue to have the freedoms I know and love.

    A thousand plagues be upon you Larry, you worthless creature.

    All the men who mistreat women in the name of God will be in for a shock in the afterlife when they come face to face with Goddess, who will ask them why they mistreated her daughters and condemn them for it.

  • (((J_Enigma32)))

    So, God’s allowable age for marriage to a woman is when she shows the signs of puberty, development of her breasts, growth of pubic hair and she has had a period.

    That’s because God is a fucking monster who needs to be ran over with a bus.

    And her “consent” is not required by God. And God does not grant her the “agency” that we believe women have today. It is her father’s decision (Exodus 22:16-17). And there is absolutely nothing unbiblical about arranged marriages (Jeremiah 29:6). Also, it is not immoral for men much older to marry younger women.

    Y’know, it’s funny. Both the Taliban and Islamic State agree with you, Larry. In fact, the Taliban promoted the marriage of girls under 16 and both practiced arraigned marriages. I wonder if he’s one of those folks who attacks Muhammad for being a pedophile; I hope he is. I love the smell of horrific hypocrisy. It’s almost like y’all theocratic fascists are all alike save for the superficial trappings.

    It’s also worth noting that organizations like the Home School Defense League Associate (HSLDA) exist so this man can home school his children without any oversight at all. Just remember that. They defend a man who says a girl is marriageable as soon as she has her menarche — regardless how young that actually is.

  • SAO

    Actually, menarche — or a girl’s first period — is not the sign of the end of puberty or that the girl has reached full adulthood. Where in the process of puberty a girl has her first period varies. Even today, most girls don’t finish puberty until age 17, although the average girl has her period by age 13.

    Since a pregnancy before the mother is fully grown is a high-risk pregnancy, it’s highly unlikely that “the flower of her age” means a period. In Medieval times, the onset of puberty was not much different from today, it just took girls and boys longer to get to maturity, with the average age of menarche 15, which is a WORLD of difference in mental and emotional maturity compared with a pre-teen girl, which is what the average American girl is when she gets her first period.

    Let’s remember this: when Solomon talks about girls having their first period, he is talking about pre-teen girls, because the average age of menarche in the US, UK and Canada is UNDER 13.

    Pre-teens. No, it is not “perfectly moral” for them to be married. It’s a crime.

  • bekabot

    1. Larry Solomon doesn’t seem to know that Abigail Adams was married not to James Madison but to John Adams (Samuel Adams’s cousin). Margaret Atwood (with her roots in Salem) would never make that mistake; there’s not much daylight to be found between Salem, Boston, and Braintree. The Adamses, Quincys, Nortons, and Smiths were all Yankees through and through — but James Madison came from Virginia. If Madison had married a woman like Abigail the marriage would have been counted as a profound mesalliance; fortunately he had the good sense to marry the daughter of North Carolina Quakers instead. Larry Solomon doesn’t seem to be in possession of any of these facts. I find it odd, but I’m going to be charitable and assume that his Biblical studies have squeezed them all out.

    2. Larry keeps talking about the mutual dependency between men and women, but the relationship he describes is one in which women are dependent on men and not the other way around. If women need men to live but men only need women for one specialized function, the relationship is not one of ‘mutual’ dependency but is (OTC) a relationship between a human being and an accessory, similar to the relationship (for example) between a man and his smartphone. The man may feel dependent on his phone, but he isn’t really, because if he drops the phone and breaks it, his life goes on, but the phone’s finished for good (and he gets to buy a new one after a suitable period of mourning). This, BTW, isn’t meant to be an idle comparison. Lots of people have noticed that virtual assistants inevitably have female names and voices and that they won’t answer questions which are important in the lives of women, and that they’re programmed to respond to insults with deference. (“I’m not sure how to respond to that”; giggle, blush.). And in case anybody misses the analogy, there are movies like this one to drive the point home. Woman-the-appliance is a truism of our culture, and Larry may be more affected by it than he thinks.

  • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

    Larry Solomon needs to be (but won’t be, there are laws against it) forced into a sexual relationship he hates and abhors and brutally beaten if he dares resist.

    If I can’t get the guy to have sympathy, I’d damn well force him into empathy.

  • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

    You left out possibly having a tear from childbirth cause a fistula between the anus and the vagina, with predictably horrible results.

    🙁

  • Suzanne Harper Titkemeyer

    Hey, it might happen. If Larry went to jail I’m pretty sure he’d be the female of a forcible partnership. I am against prison rape, right up until someone like Larry espouses something equally horrific for a woman,

  • Allison the Great

    Larry wants to be an intolerable ass douche. He’s found a holy book that he thinks gives him permission and a sense of power in a world where he feels inadequate. The best way to fight against the toxic way in which he weaponizes his low self esteem is to use the power that he doesn’t think women should have. Vote. Own as much property as you can. Work, build your career and climb the latter. Claim the promotions that guys like him think they are entitled to, but don’t work as hard as you do to get. Vote again.

  • B.E. Miller

    “Woman-the-appliance is a truism of our culture” Now I’m remembering the Stepford Wives series my mom used to watch way back….

  • Jennifer

    Stupid, disgusting idiot bastard.

    Gilead would basically take any *women not living according to the new law’s idea of Biblical to become a handmaid. That meant women in second marriages, lesbians, nuns, and single women not in powerful families, I’m sure.

    *ETA FERTILE women

  • Jennifer

    Books like that, 1984, The Giver, never stop being fascinating. People in Biblical times married early because..well, lots of reasons. This was before psychology, when a lot of people were very poor and needed connections to other families, and also when childbirth could be dangerous and a lot of children were needed.

  • Jennifer

    Those two natural crises put the country in a fragile position, then the cultists swept in and murdered the president and many at the top. It was a steady but quick descent from there.

  • Jennifer

    Useless imbeciles like him often forget that if the mother’s not capable of carrying a child to term, the child is often doomed too. But hey, they did it in Biblical times, so..

  • Jennifer

    Gotta love how Larry considers himself God. THAT pitiful deity-wannabe could use a good bus smack.

  • Allison the Great

    You make some damn good points there. Larry does view women as things and not people. That really says a lot about him and why he clings to a faith that allows him to be this way.

  • B.E. Miller

    In the book (it’s been years since I read about half of it), only women who were fertile were handmaids. The other women were sent off to ‘clean up’ radioactive waste in the Colonies.

    And women of color (like the Marthas) were either servants, or living on whatever reservation the “Children of Ham” had been rounded up to.

    I wish I could remember where someone reviewing the series said that one of the big points of the book, is that what often happened in American history only to WoC, was now happening to white women.

    Oh, I didn’t even think about ‘single wealthy white women’ who probably lost all their money and property with the rise of the Republic of Gilead. Now I’m wondering how they were doing, if they were sentenced to cleaning up radioactive waste, or if they were living in some shantytown, I wonder how many might have been ‘friends’ of Serena Joy, who thought that they would be okay….

    Now I want fan fiction…..

  • Jennifer

    “Larry keeps talking about the mutual dependency between men and women, but the relationship he describes is one in which women are dependent on men and not the other way around. If women need men to live but men only need women for one specialized function, the relationship is not one of ‘mutual’ dependency but is (OTC) a relationship between a human being and an accessory, similar to the relationship (for example) between a man and his smartphone.”

    EXCELLENT point. The tool outrightly says women’s rights should be stolen!! There’s nothing mutual there at all!

  • Friend

    This is not a misunderstanding or even willful ignorance. It’s just a deliberate, insistently warped distortion of a valuable book that looks a little too true to life these days.

    Larry, Lori, et al., are only going to confuse people in their little sphere. Even that is a shame, but everybody else will find the book and TV series perfectly horrifying.

  • Allison the Great

    I’ve noticed that there is a common theme in people who want to take women’s rights and autonomy away. They’ve even said they don’t like women competing with men in the work place. They stupidly think we want to be men because we work. Much of the time, the people that voice these opinions are often the kind who don’t like to work hard to compete. They want less competition, which i think is pathetic. It’s like they’re saying “I’d totally win that game if nobody else were allowed to play”.

  • bekabot

    Atwood’s aware of the trope, whether or not Larry is. ‘Econowives’ is a Stepford kind of term. Econowives themselves are like knockoffs of high-end appliances: they’re not new or shiny, but they get the job done. That’s the way it’s presented in the book.

  • Nightshade

    I’ll volunteer to drive that bus. I’ve never driven a bus in my life, but for that I’d learn!

  • Jennifer

    Oh yeah, I meant women who were fertile.

  • bekabot

    FWIW, Shakespeare seems to have had an opinion about this, and his opinion and Larry’s aren’t the same.

    Capulet:

    My child is yet a stranger in the world.
    She hath not seen the change of fourteen years.
    Let two more summers wither in their pride
    Ere we may think her ripe to be a bride.

    Paris:

    Younger than she are happy mothers made.

    Capulet:

    And too soon marred are those so early made.
    Earth hath swallowed all my hopes but she.

    In other words, Juliet’s father is talking to Juliet’s intended (Paris) and asking Paris to wait a year or two before he marries Juliet, because Juliet’s still only thirteen (going on fourteen) and because (frankly) it’s dangerous to force a girl to have a baby at that age, even if she’s fertile and technically capable of it, and even if she has nice boobs. The best-case scenario is that it will only age her prematurely instead of killing her — and what’s more, her baby might not survive either. When Capulet says that all his other hopes have been shoveled into the ground, both he and Paris are keenly aware that if Paris impregnates Juliet too soon, Juliet stands the world’s best chance of going right after them and of taking her child along with her. Larry Solomon might say that in this instance it’s the father making the call and that therefore it’s okay, but what he’d be ignoring are the reasons for Capulet’s request. The reasons for Capulet’s request are very good ones; so good, in fact, that they stand independent of him. If it’s a Godly thing for a girl to get pregnant at twelve or thirteen years old, it remains Godly whether or not her father says so; and if not, not. If a thing is absolute, it’s not absolute because Dad says it: at best, Dad says it because it’s absolute. Larry goes at these things bass-ackwards. He’s not interested in what he can give his religion, but in what he can get from it; he’s interested in it to the extent that it backs him up. (No doubt the Sons of Jacob have the same set of priorities.)

  • Mimc

    They seem to forget that the health of a fetus is very dependent on the health of the person carrying the pregnancy.

  • (((J_Enigma32)))

    I may be mistaken, but weren’t the Children of Ham rounded up on a boat that was sank at sea? With the implication there being “Oops, we [Gilead] totally did this by not-accident.”

    About the only thing that sat wrong with me with regards to the Handmaid’s Tale was how they took over. As Trump has demonstrated, they wouldn’t need to machine gun anyone. They could just walk right in with support from less than 30% of the population.

  • B.E. Miller

    May his gonads be infected with lice and crabs….

  • Allison the Great

    Guys like Von Ohlman and Larry fetishize pre-teen girls. They are exposing their true nature when they do this which is – a creep. Most men don’t do that. Men like Larry have a host of issues that they are not willing to get help for. They are using religion to justify it.

  • Allison the Great

    Better crotch rot, that way he’s not able to inflict himself on his poor wife (if she really exists).

  • B.E. Miller

    “Handmaids were women of likely or proven fertility who were divorced, in
    a second marriage, or had kids outside of wedlock. They could ‘atone’
    for being filthy sluts by being broodmares for the Commanders.”

    Now I’m thinking of women like Murphy Brown, who had their own careers, property, money, IRAs and investment accounts, and chose to have children out of wedlock, simply because they wanted a child, and could afford to do so.

  • B.E. Miller

    And when most children did not make it to adulthood.

  • B.E. Miller

    May the Noodley One curse him with testicular cancer…..

  • B.E. Miller

    Re; Children of Ham’s boat….. That’s also possible, as it’s been years since I read it. I’ve likely forgotten.

  • Allison the Great

    Ramen.

  • Allison the Great

    Now that is something to strive for, except the kid part. To each their own though. My goal is to buy a house one day.

  • Saraquill

    I’m sure the epilogue moved the goalposts yet again, saying any married woman who tied the knot outside of a Gilead approved church could be Handmaids.

  • B.E. Miller

    Oh, hey, found the link about how what happened to black women in slavery now happening to white women in the Republic of Gilead.

    https://www.theverge.com/2017/6/15/15808530/handmaids-tale-hulu-margaret-atwood-black-history-racial-erasure

  • It amazes me that he says this garbage out loud. Most of his type like to hide their end goal in the hopes of sneaking their ideas around reasonable people. This is bold.

  • Allison the Great

    Maybe he thinks he’s being edgy, like that Gavin McGinnes fuckhead.

  • Saraquill

    Meanwhile Larry isn’t fit to be a Commander’s driver.

  • Saraquill

    A different popular TV show spawned the occasional outrage piece due to unpleasantness against the conventionally pretty, white, upper class female characters. Hardly a peep when it came to WoC characters.

  • Saraquill

    I know they did it to Jews, as it was cheaper than shipping them to Israel. Not sure about PoC.

  • Saraquill

    PSA time:

    Child marriage is legal in 48 US states. Depending on the state, there is no age limit or residency requirements. The child is still unable to enter contracts, making divorce nigh impossible.

    Please check out Equality Now. This organization is fighting to end child marriage in the US and abroad, as well as defeat sex trafficking and other ickiness Gilead supports. They’re partners with National Coalition to End Child Marriage in the United States. Support both groups!

  • Allison the Great

    Right? In such a miserable shithole of a dystopia, he’d wouldn’t be the important man that he thinks he would be. Even in a world where men had more than one wife, he probably wouldn’t be one of those who could get or support more than one wife. His ideas of what society should be (with him being powerful enough to be the man he thinks he is) are pure fantasy.

  • Allison the Great

    Guys like Larry (and Tim Bayly, Dough Wilson, Stephen Anderson, you know, the whole lot of them) always overstate their masculinity and ability to hold their own in a fight. The guys who throw hissy fits about female superheroes being unrealistic because “women can’t fight” probably couldn’t win a fight with a one-armed hobbit.

  • Jennifer

    He has a current wife?? I thought he just had an ex.

  • Jennifer

    Exactly. Medically, we’re living in very good times now and normal people know that children aren’t meant to do what adults do.

  • Jennifer

    POC were definitely considered the children of Ham. The film briefly showed blacks in the beginning being driven en masse out of the town in a truck. Later, the news said the resettlement of the children of Ham was going successfully. Jews were given the option to convert or be shipped back to Israel and had to take exams to prove they were Jewish, since many started grabbing that opportunity to leave the country. Someone said, however, that many of the ships were sunk and never made it to Israel.

  • Allison the Great

    He’s written about his alleged current wife. Apparently she comes from a feminist family and he had to groom her out of it. I pity her for her serious lapse in judgement, but I also pity her family. Can you imagine having this creep marry into your family? Holiday gatherings would be a non-thing if this guy were always coming. I mean I can understand the sentiment, they put up with the creep to keep in contact with their daughter, but damn man that’s got to be rough. If he really does have a wife who was raised to be a feminist, her father was doing right by her. He was raising her to be able to protect herself from guys like Larry. I can’t imagine what a slap in the face this would be to him.

    If my dad saw me with someone like that, he’d stage an intervention.

  • Jennifer

    That article makes a heck of a lot of assumptions, but some interesting points. Thanks for linking!

  • Jennifer

    What show was that?

  • Jennifer

    In an FLDS setting, he’d be one of the wifeless peons who was likely driven out before he hit 25.

  • Lizard

    “So, God’s allowable age for marriage to a woman is when she shows the signs of puberty, development of her breasts, growth of pubic hair and she has had a period. At that point it is perfectly moral for her to be married.”

    Pregnancy would wreak havoc on the body of a twelve-year-old. She might never have children again due to trauma to the reproductive system. She might die. She will certainly never fully recover. The body simply isn’t ready at that age. Full stop. Period. (So to speak.)

    That this man looks at little girls that age and thinks it’s “moral” for men in their 50s to marry and impregnate them should tell everyone all they need to know about him, and also fuck his God.

  • Jennifer

    Great point! Daddy Capulet was concerned about his daughter’s well-being in a time when poor female children had to bear children themselves. Can’t remember why he ever decided to change his mind.

  • Lizard

    I define the anti-choice position by their lectures on the “wonder of children” while passing bills forcing 11-year-olds to birth rape babies.

  • Lizard

    “Larry keeps talking about the mutual dependency between men and women, but the relationship he describes is one in which women are dependent on men and not the other way around.”

    They argue their way out of this one by claiming that men are expected to be willing to die to protect their women, but not the other way around. Since men are literally willing to die for women, women should be their 24/7 personal servants, maids, and blow-up dolls for their entire natural lives. Because men would (allegedly) be willing to do something that has about 99.9999999999999% chance of never, ever happening.

    Seems fair. /s

  • Cynthia

    From what I’ve read, betrothal would often come before marriage – by a year or more.

    Arranging a marriage was considered a duty of the father, so there was pressure, esp. in uncertain times, of making sure that he had put everything in place. Orphans were considered to be more vulnerable and needed extra assistance to get married.

  • Lizard

    There have been multiple attempts, especially recently, to pass laws banning marriage before 18. They’ve been blocked mostly by Republicans whining about “parental rights.” Seriously. They, however unconsciously (or consciously), make the argument that parents should have the right to sell their kids into sexual slavery. ‘Murica.

  • Nightshade

    Yeah, I’ve kind of got some mixed feelings here. For the most part I believe in giving people credit for honesty, but his pile of bullshit is so vile, I can’t even give him even that much.

  • Cynthia

    The parental rights argument boggles the mind.

    Them: Parental rights – we should have total control over our children and know what is best for them.

    Also Them: The kids are mature enough to get married, make a lifelong commitment and maybe parent their own kids.

  • Lizard

    It’s the same level of nonsensical as “She’s too young to decide to get an abortion but she’s old enough to give birth to and possibly raise a child.”

  • AFo

    It sounds like Larry is mad that he can’t marry an underage girl to mold into his perfect woman, so he’s using a book that is a warning about how theocracy harms everyone to advocate for one, all so men like him can sexually abuse girls and women.

  • No, no credit. It just makes me consider, if one person was bold enough to say it in public, how many are thinking it or saying it in private? Are they finding more people are approving of this now than before?

  • Nightshade

    I’m not sure if it’s a larger approving audience, or if it’s about the same number of people who are more likely to actually say it. Either way it’s not a good sign, especially combined with what seems to be an ongoing effort to erode women’s rights.

  • Hannah

    Is it surprising these people don’t care about children’s rights? The USA didn’t ratify the UN Convention of the Rights of the Child (along with Somalia and South Sudan.)

    Also there being no minimum age of marriage, which overrides the age of consent and gives child rapists a literal ‘get out of jail free’ card, boggles the mind. Marry the girl you’ve raped (and got pregnant) and we won’t send you to prison, (where you belong) instead you can carry on abusing this child while she has children of her own. It’s sickening. (Was it the Washington Post that ran an article about it a couple of years ago? The BBC also did some pieces on it that I found on YouTube.)

    Where does life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness fit into forcing underage girls into marriage? Short answer, it bloody well doesn’t, but we’ll stick our fingers in our ears and ignore the girls and women speaking out against it.

  • gimpi1

    It’s war, all right. Any woman and any man who has women he cares about, any person who gives a damn about justice, anybody who doesn’t want to go back to a brutal and foolish past will be on our side.

    This is the question I always ask people who believe in patriarchy: do you want to enshrine it in law and force those who don’t share your beliefs to follow them? Most say no, that they’re only concerned with their churches and families. And, if that’s the case, and they can find a partner that’s happy in this system and people who share their beliefs, fine.

    Mr. Solomon crosses the line. He wants to force everyone to go along with his madness. No way. No how. War it is.

  • Jennifer

    ..Oh dear God, I hope he’s lying. I mean, how could a guy like that ever GET a regular woman, let alone one who calls herself a feminist? And why would a creep like him try to? I’d imagine he’d aim for sheltered girls from cults.

  • Saraquill

    Yet common sentiment is this country is pro-freedom. Bleh.

  • Saraquill

    Game of Thrones.

  • bekabot

    He doesn’t; he thinks Paris will be a great husband for Juliet (and he might be right) and he sticks by his opinion, which is why he’s so adamant that Juliet and Paris must get hitched. But Juliet, meanwhile, has fallen head-over-heels in love with Romeo, and it is she (ironically) — not her father — who insists on an early marriage, because she knows that once she’s married to Romeo she can’t be married to Paris. “The best laid plans of mice and men” I think is the subtext here.

  • paganheart

    Pro-freedom for rich, white, Christian, cis-het males only. Hell and slavery for everyone else.

  • (((J_Enigma32)))

    Maybe that’s what it was, then. I seem to remember some group being put on a boat out to sea and then being torpedoed.

    Of course, this just makes me wonder if the rest of the world views Gilead like they view, say, the Islamic State. Since that’s basically what Gilead is; it’s a Christian IS. Even if you don’t believe that Israel cares about Jews, this is still a huge optics problem for that nation. To stand by and do nothing while Jews are killed yet again? And not even by an ally; by a hostile entity that overthrew an ally at that. The only reason the United States is even tolerated today is because of the position our currency has in the global economy and because of our military strength; Gilead does not sound like it has either of those, and so would likely be viewed at least hostilely by Mexico, Canada, and former allies of the United States.

    Of course, the story is about Offred on a smaller scale and the treatment of women on a larger one, not geopolitics, and it does a marvelous job telling that story. Anything else is just extraneous to the narrative.

  • (((J_Enigma32)))

    I’m pretty sure Saraquill is right and it’s Gilead only did that to the Jews, not the Children of Ham. It’s been a few years since I read it too, though.

  • Allison the Great

    They want to protect children from gay cartoon characters getting married, but not from life threatening complications from childbirth.

  • (((J_Enigma32)))

    They also kvetch about “traditional marriage” with regards to protecting child marriage too, because they’re afraid it might result in “Teh Gehyz” being treated as humans or something.

    Frankly, as a moral adult, the idea of banning child marriage and promoting the rights of gay folks sounds like a win-win to me and should to anyone with any fucking sense. Unfortunately, these folks are not moral adults, and they do not have any fucking sense.

  • bekabot

    They argue their way out of this one by claiming that men are expected to be willing to die to protect their women

    Men are required to be willing to die to protect women at most in theory and on paper. The real truth about what men are required to do is that they’re expected to protect their buddies (i.e. other men) through a series of expedients, including white lies, black lies, differential hiring practices, humbug, old dudes’ tales, bluster, Biblical quotations, and jokes. I’m not blaming men for this (not at all) BTW — men are born into a situation just and women are, and have to make the best of it, just as women do. Still, if you’re a man, one of the worst moves you can make, so far as your own prospects and comfort are concerned, is to side with a woman against another man. For the most part, it just isn’t done.

    There’ve been so many public illustrations of this unwritten rule during the past couple years that I don’t feel the need to cite any of them here. (Few of us need convincing that water is wet.) Anyone who honestly doesn’t know what I’m talking about is invited to watch old YouTube clips of the Kavanaugh hearings until the light breaks through. And I hope you are quick learners, folks; because those old clips make depressing viewing and are a punishment to watch. I can think of few fates more cruel than to have to sit up with them all night.

  • Allison the Great

    That’s because God is a fucking monster who needs to be ran over with a bus.

    I know right? When I was going to church, Christian schools and doing the youth group thing, I never could understand where people were getting the idea that Yahweh was moral. He’s not. Morality is protecting the lives, dignity and safety of those around you. It’s respect for animals, for other people’s property and for the planet . Most people are aware of this, I just was never able to see how any of that came from God. The ideas we have about human decency were never exemplified in any of his actions. The commandments that tell people to respect each other and not be an ass come after the ones that tell you how Yahweh likes to be worshipped. That should tell people all they need to know about that character. It always perplexes me to here “you can’t be moral if you don’t believe in GAWD” or “you need to be more godly” because that would mean lowering my own standards of ethics and human decency. No thanks.

  • Allison the Great

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/1c00e447ba3ec205c4bf5097fca785eea324147996d14b41321f828a9169cf22.jpg

    Use this. It looks badass and fun to drive, and did I mention it has a backup weapon?

  • bekabot

    Right: ‘pro-freedom’ in practice usually turns out to mean: “I’m pro- my own freedom but anti- everyone else’s.” There’s no real reason why it should have to turn out that way — but somehow it almost always does. Too bad.

  • Allison the Great

    I seriously hope that his wife, and the daughter he allegedly had with his ex, are figments of his imagination, I really do.

    His daughter is still a teenager. I hope she cuts off contact with him the second she’s legally an adult.

  • paganheart

    I wonder about that as well. There’s a scene in The Handmaid’s Tale where a man comes to Offred’s workplace and orders all the women to leave, because women are no longer allowed to have jobs. All the men in the office just sit there and do nothing as their female co-workers are forced out, and a few men even smile. Sadly I fear the same would happen in real life; that very few (if any) men would say or do anything in such a situation, either out of sheer cowardice, or secret agreement.

  • Allison the Great

    I’ve worked with quite a few guys who would have spoken up. I’m not convinced that Larry’s wet dream of women being kicked out of the workforce in one fell swoop is one that is shared by all men.

  • I wish I had met more men who actually had our backs. There are lots who claim to be feminist, but only because they want credit for not being as awful as the worst guys. An actual man who’s paying attention and cares the way he cares about his own rights is hard to find.

  • I just could never figure out how, if I had no morality apart from God, I kept having a crisis over God’s immoral behavior.

  • Allison the Great

    I wish you could have met some of my friends. I used to work a pretty masculine warehouse job. There was a lot of lifting and using of pallet jacks. Me and the guys who worked there had a pretty tight bond. I knew that they had our backs (all the women who worked there) when they totally snubbed an MRA type that started working there. The guy was very disappointed that there were women working there, and it showed in everything he did. The guys I worked with spoke up, told him to either be respectful or GTFO. Those guys are my friends. Even at my new job I don’t think that the guys there would stand for that. I think that Larry’s mentality is becoming less and less prevalent in the workplace. At least, I hope it is.

  • Allison the Great

    Right? I was always asking “yeah I know that this is what God did, but how is that right or moral?” If humans behaved like God does, they’d be on death row. If a general gave the order to go kill all the men in a town, rape all the virgins, they’d be war criminals.

  • TheBookOfDavid

    In biblical terms, it is known as an iron chariot.

  • TheBookOfDavid

    The most charitable interpretation is one of self interest: men exposing themselves to hazards in order to prevent a personal asset from falling into another man’s hands. The track record of men actually throwing their lives away to protect their mate is mixed at best, and comes off as an empty promise, to the point of being comically cliche.

  • Jennifer

    I remembered all right that she got married to Romeo, but then her parents decided they wanted her to marry Paris in a couple of days instead of years after Tybalt died.

  • Jennifer

    Ohh. Gosh, I thought that was awful unpleasantness against everyone.

  • Allison the Great

    “What do you mean you didn’t like being hit by a bus? We did it biblically!”

  • bekabot

    Well, there’s a number of factors working all together; it’s something like a perfect storm. When Tybalt gets killed, Team Capulet takes a hit and Old Capulet becomes anxious to shore up his position. A person who reads or sees the play can tell that Old Capulet and Team Capulet both have lost a close male supporter and want to gain another as soon as possible and that they’re willing to pawn Juliet to do it. It’s situational morality, the kind practically everybody lives by (thank God). Juliet’s father, given his druthers, would rather see her married at sixteen than fourteen but in the absence of the proper quorum of strong sword arms he’ll take what he can get. (Meanwhile, like I said before, Romeo is already suborning Friar Laurence while Juliet waits fretfully for news.)

  • Jennifer

    I thought he was in his 20’s and too young to have a teen kid!

  • Jennifer

    Yeah, makes sense given the situation (not saying that age is moral, I just get human panic). I’ve read the play and seen the original film more than once, but it’s been years. Just wish her parents hadn’t gone cruelly bonkers when she objected.

  • 24CaratHooligan

    And I’m tired of hearing the “Not All Men” whining as well. The patriarchy exists, you can either help us smash it or you can continue to reap the privilege. As I descend happily into cronehood I have less and less patience with the kind of wankery displayed by religious spunk-trumpets like Doug, or anyone who supports him.

  • Mel

    Interestingly, the book includes a scene where a former nun who had been captured is transformed into a Handmaiden because anyone who fought against the Gilead regime was viewed as being too dangerous to be allowed to be a Wife.

    In my understanding, Wife/Econowife or Servant vs. Handmaiden or Unwoman is a decision made on perceived danger to the Gilead regime hidden under language about religion. Wives and Servants were women who were willing to toe the line and had cash. Econowives were toeing the line, but poorer. The Handmaidens were kept around in spite of their danger because of the shortage of women who could reproduce (although, again, Atwood implies in a few places in the book that the real issue was massively decreased fertility among men compounded by the age of the rich men) while women who couldn’t reproduce and were dangerous were shipped off to the colonies.

  • Allison the Great

    He’s supposedly old enough to have 5 nearly grown kids

  • Astreja

    Indeed, if the “Not All Men” strived to do something about the men who were the problem, instead of complaining about it, we might actually get somewhere.

  • Suzanne Harper Titkemeyer

    Been married twice and has 5 kids. I think the youngest is around 12 or 13.

  • Jennifer

    Oh Lord, all this time I thought he was a single pipsqueak with an ex. He’s reproduced?? Makes me hope, and honestly wonder, if he’s lying about that.

  • Nightshade

    Perfect! We know God can’t defeat iron chariots.

  • Nightshade

    Even better!

  • Nightshade

    Like when Abraham lied about Sarah being his wife, and Isaac did the same with Rebekah, to save their own skins. Totes Biblical.

  • Iain Lovejoy

    The irony is that the marriage pattern of barely pubescent girls being married off to older men regardless of their wishes that these a***holes advocate was the pre-Christian marriage pattern which Christianity slowly replaced, and it was the church that (eventually) insisted on consent in marriage.
    Marriage (or at least childbirth) below 18 was realised to be unhealthy by Elizabethan times FFS. Their “Biblical view of marriage” is a reversion to what Christianity tried to ban.
    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Western_European_marriage_pattern

  • GeckoShamelessRaceMixer

    It’s an interesting argument since your chances of dying from childbirth must historically normally have been higher than your chances of dying in combat.

  • Ally

    It gets worse. As Suzanne has documented based on Larry’s articles and blog comments on the subject, his wife developed a heart condition after she had a gastric bypass surgery. That condition then caused her to blackout while driving on the highway. She had a horrific accident that gave her a TBI as well chronic neck and back pain, depression, and anxiety. And Larry asks his readers to congratulate him by how patient he’s being with his severely disabled wife every time she’s too sick, tired, or pained to have sex or keep up with housework. I DO understand that caretakers spouses might experience occasional frustration because they are also in a difficult position, but Larry’s going well beyond that. He seems to think that his wife and other disabled wives are being lazy and entitled if they ask for what he considers to be too much help, and he definitely thinks that they’re engaging in some form of unfair defrauding if they’re unable to be enthusiastic about sex when they’re in serious pain from one of their many health problems.

  • Allison the Great

    I remember reading that. Didn’t he say that since she didn’t want to quit her job he prayed for something to make her reconsider, or is that some other narcissistic prick? This woman has been through hell, and is still there if she’s stuck with an asshole like Larry. I hope her parents take her away for her own safety and sanity.

  • Ally

    He’s said before that he considers the car accident to be God’s intervention in his wife’s life to make her repent of her feminist sins.

  • Allison the Great

    That is fucked up. It’s further proof that he views his wife as a thing, not a human being . He probably wanted to insure that she lost her earning power and became physically and financially dependent on him, so that when she did realize what a horrible person he is, she’d have a more difficult time getting away from him. These are not the actions of a husband who cares abut his wife. These are the actions of a self-centered child who only considered their own needs and desires.

  • I know my husband would do/say something, but he’d probably end up shot in the process. And that terrifies me.

  • Read?! Larry?!

  • Seventy years ago, these guys would have been protesting against Jackie Robinson, because most of them are mediocre white dudes.

  • ^This.

  • Truth. I had a co-worker many years ago who swore he could “kick everyone’s ass” if he wanted. He didn’t say it once, he said it repeatedly.

    He said the wrong thing to the wrong female co-worker and she jumped him. I have never seen a skinny white guy run so fast in my life.

  • Anonyme

    Ew. Ew, ew, ew.
    I had my first period when I was 11. And Larry’s saying it would have been a-okay if my father had passed me on to some creeper.
    Ewww.

  • Jennifer

    Dear God, that monstrous douche.

  • B.E. Miller

    Sorry, I was just wondering what happened to women, like Murphy Brown, when the “Sons of Jacob” or whomever took over….

    I’d love to own my own house someday, but I’m too old for the kid.

  • persephone

    Larry wrote the post on ignoring your wife’s tears during sex, because God says you have the right.

  • persephone

    It feels so much like the 72 virgins that Islamic martyrs will be given in Heaven. Why would you want a virgin? They’re not going to know anything about sex, especially good sex. It’s obviously such a mindset of owning the newest model, fresh off the sales floor, untouched.

    Gross.

  • Jennifer

    Or they’re bad in bed and don’t want a woman who would know the difference as much. Besides, experienced women are “manly”, ew!

    Personally, I’d prefer a man who’s less sexually experienced. The kind of guy who sleeps around with whoever he can is no turn-on for me.

  • Suzanne Harper Titkemeyer

    Yes, yes Larry did! He said you should not look your crying wife in the face while having sex with her against her will. He advocated raping your own wife.

  • zizania

    I can’t remember reading any Atwood when I was in school. For us it was Margaret Laurence all the way.

  • Allison the Great

    It’s yet another thing that shows how these people think women are things, not human beings..

  • Jennifer

    Dear God in heaven. May that bastard reap the poison he plants.

  • Jennifer

    If I recall correctly, the Jews were told to give the women a period of grieving, and let them divorce later if they didn’t wish to be married.