How abortion became an obsession with the religious right

Samantha Bee continues her history lesson on the evangelical movement in the US, with part 2 focusing on how abortion was used by a few people to galvanize the religious right. You can see part 1 here.


  1. Rob Grigjanis says

    Bee taught me something I didn’t know, but probably should have.

    I know that a lot (certainly not all) of Southern Baptists used to be very concerned with social justice. Some still are. Many pastors were strong supporters of Roosevelt’s New Deal, for all the right (IMO) reasons. It’s sad to see the current alignment with the forces of evil.

    And Samantha Bee is several kinds of awesome. But she’s a Toronto lass, so no surprise there!

  2. moarscienceplz says

    I know that a lot (certainly not all) of Southern Baptists used to be very concerned with social justice.

    That may well be, but considering that the SBC originally split from the northern Baptists because they wanted to be more supportive of slaveowners, you would think they would have done something about changing the name. Just like all the weaseling that was done for decades to try to justify keeping the Confederate battle flag flying, the optics are not good, no matter how pure their intentions.

  3. Rob Grigjanis says


    the optics are not good

    20/20 hindsight optics is really easy, ain’t it? If you want your optics nuanced, you could recognize that the elite slave-owners were Anglicans, who considered Baptists radicals. That Baptists were eventually largely co-opted into the acceptance of slavery is more of a comment on the effect of power than a comment on the innate horribleness of Baptists.

  4. wsierichs says

    By percentage of membership, the largest group of slave owners was Presbyterians. Presbyterian clergy were also the largest group of clergy who wrote defenses of slavery. A black historian wrote that, in terms of actual numbers, Episcopalians (Anglicans) were the largest group on the East Cost, but Baptists and Methodists were the largest groups in the Deep South.
    Good resources to check on this issue (I’m sure there are others I’ve never learned about) are “The Arrogance of Faith” by Forrest G. Wood and “Proslavery” by Larry E. Tise. Wood said that if the number of slaves owned by Catholic Church institutions, not individuals, was added together, the church likely was the largest slavery owner in the U.S.

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