'Extreme patriarchy' at heart of Moore scandal

Alabama’s former Chief Justice Roy Moore protests that it is not just he who is on the defensive in the wake of recent allegations of sexual “improprieties” but that those who scrutinize his alleged behavior are doing so intending to castigate the so-called “Christian” right as a whole. In his turn, Alabama’s state Auditor Jim Ziegler invokes the Bible in defense of Mr. Moore’s alleged sexual transgression: “Take Joseph and Mary. Mary was a teenager and Joseph was an adult carpenter. They became parents of Jesus” (“Moore pushed to quit the Senate race,” Nov. 10).

It is revealing to connect the dots here: Like so many other religious “fundamentalists,” these conservative extremists are unabashedly defending extreme patriarchy — the right of powerful, privileged men to control women’s bodies and, by consequence, dominate their lives. Most of the time, they try to get their way with controlling women’s reproductive rights but the most self-righteous among them also attempt to do so by using them as sexual objects.

Kostis Papadantonakis, Baltimore

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