Intersectionality assumes a kind of ungodly partiality that Christians are consistently warned away from in Scripture. We are not to judge a person based on their appearance, social strata, income, background, or ethnicity. Intersectionality insists that we can only understand ourselves and others through making judgments regarding ethnicity, background, income, social strata, and appearance. Intersectionality swaps out the idea of original sin for privilege, making all those with “privilege” the source of societal ills.
Sometimes we think of the early feminists as though they were just sweet little ladies who wanted more legal rights. They didn’t deny the existence of God, and they pleaded for fair treatment for both women and slaves. They played an instrumental role in the ending of slavery in America, a work for which we should be grateful. This monumental work alone should be our first clue: they were not sweet little old ladies. They were not wallflowers. They were tenacious, hard-working, and knew how to land a political punch.
But let’s be clear about something: what you believe about women and men is not a political issue, it’s a theological one. What you believe about people—our nature, our purpose—flows from what you believe about God. What the early feminists believed about God’s design for women and men, particularly in how we relate to each other, is still alive today. A quick perusal of the writing of women such as Susan B. Anthony and Emma Goldman tells us that they believed that being a wife means little more than being a housekeeper. It is a life of drudgery, mistreatment, and servitude. Wives are essentially parasites that are socially and individually useless. One must be stupid to believe that marriage is anything other than a commitment to failure and misery. In order for a woman to be truly free, she must not enter into a marital union. Women must be freed not from sin, but from men.
This is part of why it is so befuddling that Christians today are increasingly comfortable with labeling themselves as feminists. In our historically ignorant meme generation, it’s difficult to overcome the supposedly simple definition of feminism that is often accompanied by an image of those early feminists as doily-loving grandmas. Some still try to sell the “Feminism is the radical notion that women are people” line. It’s a lie that is somehow both blithe and misleading, but at least it’s short enough to fit in an Instagram post.
The #MeToo Lie
Feminism got a new lease on life when virtue-signaling tweets became a new kind of currency. One must not be actually virtuous anymore, they just must appear to be online. So while none of us who have read Proverbs were taken by surprise to learn that there are evil men in Hollywood, a refusal to audibly gasp can get you metaphorically sent to the gulag. Hollywood will continue to churn out blockbusters that celebrate sexual deviancy as art, all the while hanging their sins around the neck of the next goat whose reprehensible behavior comes to light. That goat has “#MeToo” spray-painted on his sides.
I have no intention of beating the “maybe they have good intentions” drum here. Christians who toe the line with the world are sorely deceived. There is no doubt that women in our nation regularly experience the heinous crime of sexual abuse. As the church, we should be angry and vocal about this. We should be a safe haven for victims. We should see sexual abuse as the reprehensible sin that it is, and be prepared to offer the hope of Jesus Christ, while seeking justice for victims.
Dealing with wickedness righteously requires that we understand the grievous nature of sin. Unfortunately, the #MeToo movement cannot see sexual abuse rightly because it was created by a world that loves sexual sin. If statistics can tell us anything, it tells us that at least 75% of the men behind the infamous #MeToo-pushing Gillette ad are regular users of pornography, an abominable industry that has done an untold amount of harm to women. But because they are willing to stand with #MeToo, we are supposed to believe that there is great virtue in their midst. No one is wondering just what their browser history would reveal about their actual hearts toward women. Men who regularly consume the abuse of women for enjoyment are able to hide behind the hashtag without having to do anything. They sail with a broken compass, and yet many Christians are willing to follow them.
#MeToo does harm to victims of sexual violence because it makes no distinction between kinds of sins. Because God is just, He makes distinctions for us between sins and crimes. All sins are evil, but not all sins are crimes, and should not be dealt with in the same manner. The man who whistled at you as you walked by is guilty of a great many things (not the least of which being stupidity), but he is not guilty of a crime punishable by death, such as a rapist or murderer should be. #MeToo makes no necessary distinction here, thereby doing great harm to real victims of sexual violence. Since what the Bible says is true, since women are made in the image of God, our treatment of crimes against women should not carry the margin of error that is inherent in the #MeToo movement.
The God of the Old Testament, the One who looked with wrath at those who sexually abused women, is the same God the church serves. He is coming again—and He’s coming as the Judge. His standards are just and right. As believers, we are required to live as though this is true, as though God has spoken, and it has real-time effect in our lives. When God defines sin and justice, we must act accordingly. You’d fire a doctor who recommended a leg amputation for every ill. So why are we still listening to feminist movements who diagnose societal problems with a similar amount of acuity?
The Intersectional Lie
The rise of Intersectionality explains a lot of what we see going on around us. Intersectionality is a humanistic religion, born from a feminist Critical Theorist, of which we cannot remain ignorant. Strict adherence to its principles grants one access to book deals, research grants, university tenure, job security, blue checkmarks, and a pass for men to wear long, flowy skirts on the red carpet.
Intersectionality is the idea that we all exist under different layers of oppression based on what social identities we can claim. Its framer, Kimberle Crenshaw, explained this idea as an “intersection”. Say, for example, you are a woman. In this worldview, it is understood that women as a group experience a sort of oppression that men don’t. But if you are also a woman of color, you experience oppression that women not-of-color won’t experience. So if you imagine that each of the identities you can claim experience a certain kind of oppression simply by their nature, where these identities overlap, you experience an “intersection” of oppression that someone who doesn’t share the same identities would not experience. The more identity groups you belong to (these false categories of identity are typically race, gender, and “sexual orientation”, and so on), the more intersections, and therefore oppression, you experience.