Post 3: Gender roles in the Westboro Church

16 Nov

Gender is a range of characteristics used to distinguish between males and females, particularly in the cases of men and women and the masculine and feminine attributes assigned to them. Depending on the context, the discriminating characteristics vary from sex to social role to gender identity (

After watching the first video that I posted, I thought about what the roles of these women that are in this church, I was lead to this blog. Also it caught my eye that in the interview they wear different clothing then most women of similar ages would.

This blog contains an interview that the writer of the blog had with a male member of the baptist church, where the man talks about how women should get paid equally do the same job, but men should always be the head of the household, and that “by the bible” men should have the say in every decision. So even though that the church does not just come out and say this, they do think smaller of women. When the man on the phone says that a women should not be in charge, that the man should this is an example of stratification (Lorber). Stratification is when men are “ranked” higher then women of the same race and class  (Lorber). Clearly the man in the interview thinks higher of himself, or uses religion, another identity marker, to say that men are the head of the house. Is there a reason they should be ranked higher? He even stated that they could do the same jobs and deserved the same pay, so who is to say a woman cannot run a household.

These people base who a person should marry, “be with”  a the opposite gender of what they are. This goes into intersectionality which is something that is discussed later but also needs to be brought up now.

The women of the Westboro Baptist Church still do play a huge role in the hate that they spread. It is mostly of the women that you see in any videos that you find, so why does the church think lower of them?

This video shows some of the women of the westboro church and what they belive. Are they even open to hearing what any of the students had to say? To me it sounded like it had to be my way or the highway, but I do not understand how they are comfortable being controlled by males there whole lives, and just standing by whatever they say. In the original video I posted, it showed the preacher disownign his own daughter for simply asking questions about the beliefs of this church. These members continually say everything is wrong because of the bible, so should they not just live the way that the bible wants them to. They are using this identity marker to put others down with is institutional discrimination (Pincus). The people of the church behaviors show that they are out to “harm” or simply put down people for what they believe, such as if you do not agree with how the interpret the bible, and think you could be a single mom or think you do you not need a man in your life that you will go to hell. They go out to put people like that down.

Lorber, J. (2000). ‘Night to his day’: The social construction of gender. In Adams et al. (Eds.), Readings for diversity and social justice. New York :Routledge Press .

Pincus, F. L. (2000) Discrimination comes in many forms: Individual, institutional, and structural. In Adams et al. (Eds.). Readings for diversity and social justice (pp. 31-35). New York: Routledge


One Response to “Post 3: Gender roles in the Westboro Church”

  1. morayjam December 3, 2011 at 10:20 pm #

    Throughout the bible are examples of women tricking men into acts of evil, probably because it was pieced together by a bunch of men. It isn’t surprising that the male members of such a fanatical church will take every opportunity to declare the rightness men have over women, as proclaimed by their holy book. It isn’t the first or last example of religion keeping women down.

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