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Losing my religion for equality…by Jimmy Carter

25 January 2013 760,559 views 1,250 Comments
Women and girls have been discriminated against for too long in a twisted interpretation of the word of God. I HAVE been a practicing Christian all my life and a deacon and Bible teacher for many years. My faith is a source of strength and comfort to me, as religious beliefs are to hundreds of millions of people around the world. So my decision to sever my ties with the Southern Baptist Convention, after six decades, was painful and difficult. It was, however, an unavoidable decision when the convention's leaders, quoting a few carefully selected Bible verses and claiming that Eve was created second to Adam and was responsible for original sin, ordained that women must be "subservient" to their husbands and prohibited from serving as deacons, pastors or chaplains in the military service. This view that women are somehow inferior to men is not restricted to one religion or belief. Women are prevented from playing a full and equal role in many faiths. Nor, tragically, does its influence stop at the walls of the church, mosque, synagogue or temple. This discrimination, unjustifiably attributed to a Higher Authority, has provided a reason or excuse for the deprivation of women's equal rights across the world for centuries. At its most repugnant, the belief that women must be subjugated to the wishes of men excuses slavery, violence, forced prostitution, genital mutilation and national laws that omit rape as a crime. But it also costs many millions of girls and women control over their own bodies and lives, and continues to deny them fair access to education, health, employment and influence within their own communities. The impact of these religious beliefs touches every aspect of our lives. They help explain why in many countries boys are educated before girls; why girls are told when and whom they must marry; and why many face enormous and unacceptable risks in pregnancy and childbirth because their basic health needs are not met. In some Islamic nations, women are restricted in their movements, punished for permitting the exposure of an arm or ankle, deprived of education, prohibited from driving a car or competing with men for a job. If a woman is raped, she is often most severely punished as the guilty party in the crime. The same discriminatory thinking lies behind the continuing gender gap in pay and why there are still so few women in office in the West. The root of this prejudice lies deep in our histories, but its impact is felt every day. It is not women and girls alone who suffer. It damages all of us. The evidence shows that investing in women and girls delivers major benefits for society. An educated woman has healthier children. She is more likely to send them to school. She earns more and invests what she earns in her family. It is simply self-defeating for any community to discriminate against half its population. We need to challenge these self-serving and outdated attitudes and practices - as we are seeing in Iran where women are at the forefront of the battle for democracy and freedom. I understand, however, why many political leaders can be reluctant about stepping into this minefield. Religion, and tradition, are powerful and sensitive areas to challenge. But my fellow Elders and I, who come from many faiths and backgrounds, no longer need to worry about winning votes or avoiding controversy - and we are deeply committed to challenging injustice wherever we see it. The Elders are an independent group of eminent global leaders, brought together by former South African president Nelson Mandela, who offer their influence and experience to support peace building, help address major causes of human suffering and promote the shared interests of humanity. We have decided to draw particular attention to the responsibility of religious and traditional leaders in ensuring equality and human rights and have recently published a statement that declares: "The justification of discrimination against women and girls on grounds of religion or tradition, as if it were prescribed by a Higher Authority, is unacceptable." We are calling on all leaders to challenge and change the harmful teachings and practices, no matter how ingrained, which justify discrimination against women. We ask, in particular, that leaders of all religions have the courage to acknowledge and emphasise the positive messages of dignity and equality that all the world's major faiths share. The carefully selected verses found in the Holy Scriptures to justify the superiority of men owe more to time and place - and the determination of male leaders to hold onto their influence - than eternal truths. Similar biblical excerpts could be found to support the approval of slavery and the timid acquiescence to oppressive rulers. I am also familiar with vivid descriptions in the same Scriptures in which women are revered as pre-eminent leaders. During the years of the early Christian church women served as deacons, priests, bishops, apostles, teachers and prophets. It wasn't until the fourth century that dominant Christian leaders, all men, twisted and distorted Holy Scriptures to perpetuate their ascendant positions within the religious hierarchy. The truth is that male religious leaders have had - and still have - an option to interpret holy teachings either to exalt or subjugate women. They have, for their own selfish ends, overwhelmingly chosen the latter. Their continuing choice provides the foundation or justification for much of the pervasive persecution and abuse of women throughout the world. This is in clear violation not just of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights but also the teachings of Jesus Christ, the Apostle Paul, Moses and the prophets, Muhammad, and founders of other great religions - all of whom have called for proper and equitable treatment of all the children of God. It is time we had the courage to challenge these views. OBSERVER Jimmy Carter was president of the United States from 1977 to 1981. Editor´s note: This article was published in many newspapers in 2009 But many people somehow missed it, so we felt it was good to share it again. July 15, 2009 The Age, National Times http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/losing-my-religion-for-equality-20090714-dk0v.html
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1,250 Comments »

  • Jackie Ramirez said:

    I have never been so proud of Jimmy Carter as I am after reading this. :^)

  • Tanya Long said:

    God Bless You President Carter!

  • Cordel said:

    And to think that the population of the U.S. have continued to revile this incredible man, long after the military establishment torpedoed him, and left Americans to be helped by the Canadian Ambassador, instead of doing their job! What a humanitarian, what an intellect! A true Christian who lives as his saviour wanted his followers to live, humbly, seriously and in service to others.

  • Marilyn McMillan said:

    I so respect President Carter any truly feel he is a
    faithful prophet in our time. What a profound
    and compassionate man.

  • LAMS said:

    Thank You Mr. President! Intelligence prevails! There is one God-and God Bless You!

  • Cathy Morton said:

    Again, I am proud of Jimmy Carter’s ability to express his views so eloquently. I remember exactly where we were (in County Democratic Headquarters) in 1976 when he was elected President of the United States. I cried then because I felt he was the wisest man to be elected in my lifetime. After more than 35 year, I feel the same!

  • Michelle said:

    Well said

  • Natalie said:

    It is wonderful to see that Jimmy Carter has finally seen the light. I am so proud of him for severing his ties with the Southern Baptist Church, which remains very much behind the times in many areas of civic life. I’m only sorry that it took him this long to do it.

  • James Baker said:

    Well done Jimmy Carter for a well expressed & reasoned piece, not to mention his courage in leaving his “church” of 60 years.

  • Jane Hodgson said:

    Jimmy Carter has always been my favorite president. His life reflects the best of Christian and humanitarian ideals.

  • Sophe Stine said:

    Wonderfully conceived, eloquently stated thoughts from a statesman and religious figure. We need more men like this across the globe.

  • Elizabeth Wentworth said:

    Thank you and all the other Elders for taking up the banner for women. You cannot imagine how much your support means to me. I am no longer able to attend church because of illness. I have fought this same battle for many years, carefully and honestly, in church and out of it, because I have much loved men in my own family. Thank you again for taking up this battle for the women in yours and also in the rest of the world. Thank you for your God-given wisdom and caring.

  • Anne said:

    Time for all the rest of the good pple to leave all “religion” behind that uses their dogma to discriminate vs anybody for any reason – the Catholic church, Islam, wherever equality is not honored or pple treated with honor and dignity – any fundamentalist group!

  • Ramona Shelby said:

    Thank you for this extremely well-thought-out commentary. May those with narrow vision read, ponder and adopt its principles… And may the Lord continue to work wondrously through you and the other Elders, President Carter.

  • dennis walker said:

    Now there speaks a man. This man is a hero like few others. Would that leaders worldwide heed his message as well as common people! I am not deeply religious personally and what he has challenged is a great part of that stance. Thank you Sir!!!

  • D Lee Berry said:

    Thank you Mr. President Carter! I truly think you are such a kind and wonderful person. I so admire you and the quiet good works you do every day……I look forward to my retirement so I can get busy giving of my time to make this country and world a better place. I thank you for the inspiration…..you & Mother Teresa are my personal favorite hero’s.
    Sincerely,
    Lee

  • silva st germain said:

    I so agree with you Jimmy ,its just too bad that not all RELIGions dont preach the truth you speak of here

  • Daniela Jorge said:

    Not just in Islamic nations are women severely punished as the guilty party in rape, President Carter. Turn on your T.V., it happens right in the U.S. on public media.

  • Karen Collyard said:

    Thank you President Carter for standing up for women.

  • k Roe said:

    Carter has seriously misinterpreted scripture in this article. He completely misses the point that the Bible teaches that men are to respect women. Obedience to men is taught in the context of marriage, and has nothing to do with the superiority of men over women, rather that in any relationship, there is a designated leader. The reponsibilities of that leader are huge, and sadly today, many men default in that area. Any marriage is going to have disagreements between the participants, and the true Biblical perspective is for the couple to discuss matters of disagreement and come to a mututal decision. In cases where there can be no common ground, the husband is instructed to make the final decision, but never, NEVER without considering the wise council of the wife.

    Sadly, Carter perpetuates the myth that the Bible teaches the superiority of the man over the woman. Sadly, he also compares Christianty to Islam, insinuating that in areas of treatment of women, that the two are not far apart on their beliefs. Nothing could be further from the truth. Christianity is a faith centered on a loving relationship between Jesus the savior and his believing children. Islam requires subservience to a leader that very little on love. Shame on you Mr. Carter. Maybe all that “lifelong” involvement in your church was a bit too diluted by the political life that you spent so much time following. The church you follow does not resemble the one I follow.

  • Kim Deloatch said:

    President Carter is a remarkable human being. I so admire and appreciate his efforts to improve our country and our world!

  • Judy said:

    Thank you President Carter for your true understanding of faith, not dogma.

  • Norma Lloyd said:

    Eloquently stated and courageous actions come as no real surprise from a hero of mine, Jimmy Carter.

  • Elizabeth Bowen said:

    Thank you President Carter.

  • Lynn Wingo said:

    President Carter remains at the top of my most admired list.

  • Kris said:

    I find it odd that you are not telling readers that this was first published in The Guardian/Observer, July 11, 2009.
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2009/jul/12/jimmy-carter-womens-rights-equality

  • Allen Howells said:

    Women hold the keys to the perpetuation of our species. This alone deserves at the very least respect but more importantly exultation.

  • Chuck Watts said:

    All politics is moral.

  • Roger Butler said:

    Dear President Carter, I am sure you know that God loves you and that you love God. No religious organization has the right to censure you. i am sorry that the church you served for so many years has come to a position which causes you to withdraw from it. The Southern Baptist Convention cannot tell God what to do – so you are safe. As a priest of the Episcopal Church for over 50 years, I know how hard it is to convince people that you can’t base your faith on one little verse from the Bible. May our Lord continue to bless and guide you in your well lived journey to Heaven. Peace.

  • Phyllis DeFelice said:

    President Carter has always been a favorite of mine,a quiet, sincere man however, when he gives his opinion I understand what he is saying, another rare quality by today’s standards.

    Phyllis North Sutton NH

  • Dubz said:

    I have one word that I think of when I think of Jimmy Carter. Mujahideen.

    This is the man who made the Taliban. So … carry on then.

  • marilyn Lauria said:

    Dear Mr. President,
    Thank you for those eloquent words calling for equality for all.
    I realize that breaking with your religion must have been an extremely difficult decision and I greatly respect you for having made that in the name of equality.

  • joyce miles said:

    How I respect this man. My entire idea of him has changed. I always thought he was one of the worst presidents we had. Not so. Awesome letter.

  • Vicki Bauman said:

    Thank you, Mr. Carter, for your continued commitment to all women and also to your life-long commitment to human rights. Women of the world have a voice thanks to your eloquence. Women, especially in India, Africa and other countries of the Middle East truly need a revolution and a voice. Please continue to use your name and influence for good causes worldwide like the one Malala is waging to educate girls in Pakistan. My daughter, Heather Foti, has travelled to the Middle East. While there, she visited tribal groups of women caring for their children and families. You are also right that many religions worldwide try to keep women “in their place” by not allowing them to progress beyond a certain point… always keeping women in their place by intimidation and threats. Thank you again

  • Jayn Albury said:

    Check it out….St Paul in Acts ll…”I commend to you PHOEBE, ArchDeaconess of Rome.”

  • Kathiewolff said:

    I also have always been proud of President Carter!

  • jimmy carter hates god | Some Church Stuff said:

    [...] I was directed to an interesting article by Jimmy Carter that covers a topic that I will fully admit I have very little knowledge on: biblical gender roles. [...]

  • oddman said:

    I’m still astonished that someone as intelligent as Carter could still harbor such superficial, willfully ignorant beliefs in supernatural dictators that speak universes into existence.

  • michaeldetroit said:

    You do realize that Jimmy Carter severed his ties with the Southern Baptist Convention more than a decade ago (in 2000) and went on to help found the New Baptist Covenant soon thereafter, right? And you also understand that this article dates back to at least 2009 and was not prompted in any way by the current equal rights debate? It probably would have been prudent to note these things… just – you know – avoid any misconceptions.

  • Ruth McVeigh said:

    How wonderful to read this reasoned and truly human response, so shortly after the inauguration of a new pope who – while he may be a very good man in many aspects, remains firm in his belief that women have no place in the higher echelons of the Roman Catholic Church.
    I’m glad that the Anglican Church of Canada has somewhat raised the ceiling on women in that church, as has the United Church of Canada.
    I was an active church member for many years, but no longer – due in part to the attitude to women.

  • Ruth McVeigh said:

    How wonderful to read this reasoned and truly human response, so shortly after the inauguration of a new pope who – while he may be a very good man in many aspects, remains firm in his belief that women have no place in the higher echelons of the Roman Catholic Church.
    I’m glad that the Anglican Church of Canada has somewhat raised the ceiling on women in that church, as has the United Church of Canada.
    I was an active church member for many years, but no longer – due in part to the attitude to women.

  • Jules said:

    Here’s one Canadian woman who deeply admires your former President. God bless your faith-filled truth-telling and your willingness to live by it, Mr Carter.

  • Karen S. said:

    President Carter; one of the most HUMAN people I know of. He suffered much condemnation at the hands of
    the type of “leaders” he writes about but never let it sway him from his path of justice. He has the courage of his convictions. Can you imagine what a wonderful world it would be if all men were as honest, respectful and without a puffed up ego as President Carter is? Spread his words of wisdom all over the globe!!!!!

  • Verna Wilson said:

    I am very proud of Jimmy Carter A good descent man. We need more people like him on our side. This world would be a better place

  • Dot Everhart said:

    Looks to me as if he found the Truth when he “lost” his religion. Truth is always a better find than institutional religion! He also has not lost his “faith” in what is true. Well-written and courageously spoken! Thank you, Mr. President!

  • seafarer77 said:

    God Bless President Carter for his courage to speak the truth! Fabulous

  • Kay L. Davies said:

    This must have been extremely difficult for President Carter, to break off from his church after so many years, but his reason is not only valid, but also wonderful. Thank you for saying and doing what few men would do, Mr. Carter. I appreciate it more than I can say.

  • Erica said:

    Thank you President Carter for standing up for us. Fundamentalism perverts and destroys the essence of all the great wisdom traditions. You’re a TRUE Christian and a splendid human. Thanks for your courage.

  • Crystal Ward Allen said:

    I so appreciate President Carter’s deep and abiding faith, while continuing to strive for justice for all human beings irregardless of gender, race or religion. From peanut farmer to world Elder, I am proud of his leadership.

  • Mahalakshmi said:

    A great and venerable statesman, SO worthy of respect and admiration.

  • Dave Cross said:

    Thank you President Carter. More men need to stand beside women in their continuing struggle for true equality.

  • Bonnie said:

    Magnificent words. Thank you, Mr. President.

  • Karen Harsham said:

    Mr. President, Thank you for speaking up for women. I have always admired your integrity as well as your work with Habitat for Humanity.

  • Beverly said:

    Hallelujah and hosanna! It seems Jimmy Carter was too good a man to have been re-elected.

  • Anne Murar said:

    History may call this man a poor President but time has shown that he was and is one of the finest statesmen this country has ever had. Thank you Mr. President.

  • Ann Waters said:

    Mr. President, you continue to stun me with your brilliance and caring for the people of the world. When I think back about what a past president should be, you are the stunning example of what our presidents can be and how they can leadL bringing attention to problems whether inadequate housing in our country or parasitic diseases in third world countries. I’ve always been proud of you, but never more than now, sir.

    I’m so sorry for all who don’t understand or respect what a treasure you are here in the US. Nemo profeta in patria.

  • aps said:

    President Carter has written so well about such an ugly reality. As has oft been the case, I’m so impressed, pleased and humbled by him. While I am atheist, he espouses, exhibits and lives the best of Christian values and teachings.

    I am left to wonder if, today, one could not say mostly same of homosexuality and gay and lesbian marriage???

  • Colin Jones said:

    Jimmy Carter is not only the finest US president there was in the past century, he is one of the all too few great world leaders.

  • William Larkworthy said:

    Jimmy Carter should be canonized.

    He got it right and is more of a saint than St Paul who taught of women,”they were created second, sinned first and should keep silence.” St Augustine taught that women were intellectually and morally inferior to women. These are the early teachings of the Christian Church and if the Church is to become ‘modern’ persons in authority – Archbishop of Canterbury, the Pope, whoever heads the various American churches, etc – should stand up and say that in our world there is no place for these evil and archaic attitudes, and should add that in truth there never was, and that for whatever their reasons the saints of old got it wrong. I have witnessed the subjugation of women in my many years in the Middle East, Islam is equally culpable but cannot and will never change its medieval stance.
    Bill Larkworthy

  • Sharon Dymond said:

    I love Jimmy Carter and would like to contribute to this conversation. Please read my essays on the topic. I came of age in the 60s in southern Louisiana in a deeply religious Mormon family.

    Girls Are Smarter Than Boys

    The World Cracks Wide Open

  • Dan H. said:

    An eye opener Mr. President. In fact my wife use to work at a large church here in Louisville that discriminates against women. In that woman do not hold a position over any men within the church.

  • Audrey Davis-Brodeick said:

    OMG… So good to know that someone who has the “power” and “connections” and the friends to start up such an incredible task. I have been saying this for so many years but never could deliver it so elequantly and with Peace. I would so love to see this printed in every newspaper all over this country and the world, then posted at all the churches and meeting halls that have a bulletin board. EVERYONE needs to read this. EVERYONE!

  • BCM said:

    What a wonderful way to start opening people’s eyes and minds! This is just one of many steps to make *the change* for the world.

  • Ken from GA said:

    If Mr. Carter had to sever his ties with the Southern Baptist Convention because he was so appalled by the SPC leaders comments….
    wonder why he didn’t sever his ties with the Democrat Party when at their convention they voted three times not to add God to their platform and even after the vote was three time not to add God the phoney commentator lied and said by a majority the vote had passed.

    Denying Christ three times, seems I’ve heard that before somewhere.

    Mr. Carter you are a hypocrite. I’m from Georgia and I voted for your sorry butt for governor and the first time for president. You were the worst president this country has ever had (up until now) and your record proves it. You are the last Democrat I voted for or I will ever vote for.

    You would never have become president in the first place if it hadn’t been for groups like the Allman Brothers who supported you 100%. Playing benefits for you and really going all out to get you elected.

    Once elected you showed your true colors. On you tube you can see Gregg Allman talking about it. How before the election you would kiss their A** for their support but after the election then they could kiss yours.

    The Southern Baptist’s are better off without you.

  • Beth W said:

    Beautifully said, Mr. President! You will be most welcome in our Presbyterian Church!

  • Mark S. said:

    I hate when someone I don’t like is right. It has long been held that when G-d created women, he did so from man’s rib, symbolizing that woman would stand beside, next to, in line with man as an equal.

  • Ellie said:

    If more people thought like President Carter there would probably be a huge increase in attendance at churches. I admire this man for speaking out. This is the type of behaviour we need from all politicians. God bless him and his family.

  • Jerilyn Dufresne said:

    I love and respect you, President Carter.

  • Melinda said:

    THANK YOU!

  • Mardy High said:

    Praise for President Carter, praise and thanks. May the world awaken to these eloquent words. It is uplifting to know other Elders are joined in the effort around the globe.

    President Carter, if we had paid attention to you when you were in office, many things would have been better for the world, including efforts to curb global warming. If we had started then, things would not be so out of our reach now.

  • Brian Riley said:

    Amazing! Now he needs to consider severing ties with University of California Regent Richard Blum, who was the main Regent responsible for hiring UC President Yudof in 2008 and the main Regent responsible for the misguided push to privatize the University of California system.

    Blum is up for re-appointment as UC Regent in the spring of 2014, and we need to block that re-appointment, either by convincing California Governor Jerry Brown to refrain from nominating him for re-appointment, or by convincing the California State senate to vote against re-appointing him.

    Failure to block Blum’s re-appointment means the University of California faces the prospect of continued attempts by Blum to privatize the system for another 12 years, until 2026. This is unacceptable and goes against the ethos of the new, pluralistic age in which we are living.

  • Becca said:

    If only President Carter understood the Scriptures…

  • Bramdean said:

    Well Mr. President, what exactly is the reason that you did not name the country where women’s rights are so egregiously violated? It is SAUDI ARABIA, is it not? The country whose human rights violations you simply ignored during your presidency. And here, by omitting mention of SAUDI ARABIA it appears you are painting with a widest possible paintbrush ALL Muslim countries. That is a disservice Mr. President.

  • Martha Wenstrand said:

    This is absolutely awesome for him to have made this decision to honor his conscious and the truth over the institution of which he has been a part for so long.

  • Mary Hirsch said:

    Well said Mr. Carter. While some former presidents are busy painting pictures of themselves in the bath tub and shower you are still trying to make the world a better place.

  • Gwendolyn Gordon said:

    Thank-you President Carter, we need more prominent people to speak up. I too am from the Southern Baptist upbringing and have moved away because of some of their teachings. Why can’t we love everyone the same. Again thanks for standing up for not just women and girls but for all people.

  • mjcopeland said:

    Wisdom!

  • marybeth said:

    Thank you sir for sharing what must have been a difficult decision for you. I have wondered for many of my own 66 years how this could continue, why more leaders haven’t stepped forward. Peace and blessings.

  • Charl Kroeger said:

    What an intelligent, compassionate and articulate statement. Thank you on behalf of al the women in my life and from me, to President Carter!

  • Andrew Anderson said:

    WELL SAID! Sir, VERY WELL SAID!!

  • Jim Martin said:

    I am Canadian and a Member of the United Church of Canada. I had the opportunity to work with, meet and chat with President Carter and Rosalyn in Haiti working with Habitat for Humanity in November of 2012. I am impressed with both of them. This is a strong statement for him to make, but I feel after hearing his Sunday Morning “Sunday School” in Haiti that his convictions remain stronger than ever. Lead on President Carter.

  • Julie said:

    Love the article. Curious as to who the “elders” are. All men?

  • Morgan L Washburn said:

    Positive change comes so slowly but thoughtful , intelligent leaders such as president Carter give it a welcome push every now and again . So valuable. So much appreciated.

  • Karen Dedosenco said:

    Why stop at equality for women? Everyone, no matter what their gender, ethnic or human attributes, should be free from discrimination. Whether it is the Bible, the Koran, or any book of religious teaching, interpretation has always been up to men and thus wrought with biases and human failings.

  • Jane Eagle said:

    History will someday show that Jimmy Carter was one of the best U.S. Presidents, ever. Anyone who has paid attention already knows this.

  • Vicki Cooper said:

    Thank you, President Carter for sharing this difficult personal decision, You have helped light our way forward.

  • Angela Vaughan Parry said:

    Very well said, and bravely done, President Carter. An American friend posted a link to this article on Facebook. Earlier, I had watched a BBC programme that sought to reinstate the reputation of Mary Magdalene as a leading female apostle. The President’s words regarding the leaders of male-dominated religious faiths choosing to interpret their sacred texts in order to subjugate women ring very true.

  • Ed said:

    So the second-worst president of all time waits 60 years to decide his church discriminates? My college got rid of the Southern Baptist Convention decades ago.

  • Cranios said:

    Jimmy may think that he was elected “Elder” and that the world recognizes him as being some wise old sage in an official capacity. But he is neither.
    He was a failure as a world leader when he was President, and he is still a sellout, always looking for some obvious truth to mimic while pretending that it’s profound.
    I also love how he touts Iran as some sort of positive example in women’s rights, here. Classic anti-American Carter.

  • DowneastDiva said:

    I love President Carter, he is a good man and history will treat him right. His compassion is boundless.

  • Marian said:

    I have noticed only one man has commented on this story! President Carter is a true and honest man. A true humanitarian.

  • monique said:

    Dear President Carter,

    Thank You for pointing toward a future of Justice for ALL.

  • JB910 said:

    Having studied early church history, I don’t recall any women serving as priests or bishops. There are many many women saints and martyrs such as St. Mary of Egypt, St. Photine, St. Helen, I could go on. I am in no way insinuating that women should be treated less equal than men. But it has always been my understanding that within the early church, men were always in the roles of leadership, not that women weren’t involved in roles such as readers, chanters, etc. If anyone can site some examples of women priests and bishops in the first 300-400 years of the church, that would be great. Thanks.

  • Bruce427 said:

    Just to set the record straight — Mr. Carter left the Southern Baptist Convention nearly 23 years ago, but continues to speak of it as though it happened recently. He is also prone to frequent misstatements regarding the SBC.

    1. SBC seminaries, theologians, and pastors have never believed, or taught, that Eve was responsible for original sin. God and Scripture clearly assign the responsibility of the Fall to Adam and that has ALWAYS been the position of the SBC since its inception in 1859 (and Mr. Carter knows this).

    2. The Bible is very clear that Eve was created (chronologically) after Adam, but Mr. Carter strongly implies that “second” in creation means second-class citizen. The SBC has never “ordained” that women must be subjugated to men. Nor does the SBC teach or believe that women are second class citizens. The SBC teaches men to “love your wives as Christ loved the Church.” The SBC is the largest Protestant denomination in America. No one is forced to join and anyone is free to leave should they wish. If women in the SBC truly felt they were being “subjugated” [Mr. Carter's word], I’m sure most would leave — and if they were married, their husbands would leave with them.

    3. Mr. Carter says that the [SBC] convention leaders “quoted a few carefully selected Bible verses…” [for the authority to make women subservient]. While this is a false statement, I must note that Mr. Carter often rejects the teachings of the Apostles and says he goes by the teachings of Christ. But Mr. Carter chooses to ignore even the clear teachings of Christ when those teachings differ from his personal views.

    For example: Christ clearly and unambiguously defined marriage as between “Male and Female” (Matthew 19:4-6). Christ even pointed His questioners back to “the beginning” [of Creation] — to God’s original foundational plan for marriage — “Male and Female” (Christ even quoted Genesis 1:27 and 2:24). Yet, in a recent interview, Mr. Carter chose to ignore this teaching of Christ and said he believes “it is very fine for gay people to be married.” As a Bible teacher, Mr. Carter surely knows Christ taught that marriage was to be between Male and Female, but “carefully chose” to omit it and, instead, substituted his own personal view.

    When a Bible teacher chooses to ignore even the teachings of Christ in favor of his own personal views, then all of that person’s proclamations must be suspect.

    It is not my desire to demean Mr. Carter, and I realize that this post will not be well-received here. But I am simply pointing out that, over the years, many of Mr. Carter’s statements regarding the SBC have been less than accurate.

  • Pastor Pete Fiske said:

    God Bless you President Carter. In Judges chapter 4 is the story of Deborah and also Jael. Two brave women who respected courageous men but not wimpy men.
    You are a courageous Christian man whom I have respected much of my life.
    My first wife Pastor Agnes Fiske (1946-2004) partnered with me in developing “The Church At Prison” in VT. She was a brave leader among women and men. My second wife Pastor Jo (Joanne) is working with me and helping to expand the ministry of The “Church At Prison”. She also is Director of Patmos Christian Academy a college level Christian School for prisoners.
    My personal experience agrees with your view that women have always been capable leaders!

  • MWG said:

    Thank you for your words of support and encouragement to all women. God sees only our hearts, not our gender and loves us even thought we are so underserving of his great love.

  • Kristie said:

    The courage to speak out against the norms of our society is an incredible gift – and an incredible burden. As someone who was raised in the Baptist Church but who has never been able to practice with them because of their intolerance, I am so proud of President Carter and blessed to be alive to see him shake intolerant religious positions and demonstrate through behavior what real spirituality is. My family members practice many of these intolerant behaviors and it grieves me to see their position of self-righteousness. If your religion is based in love, then how can you consider it spiritual if only those that believe, dress, or behave as you do are accepted. Blessed are we in our diversity.

  • Shirley Boberg said:

    President Carter,
    Thank you so much for your words. If you ever feel called to visit Bangor Maine 04401; please come to Sunday service at First Baptist Church on Center Street. We would be proud to have you in our congregation.
    May God continue to bless you.

  • cass benedict said:

    Dear Mr President Carter,
    I am so encouraged to hear your words and your taking a stand for women and people of faith. Love and light to you and blessings for all you have done to minister to a needy world.

  • Carolyn Lemcool said:

    It is a shame President Carter is not still our President. How much more wonderful would be our lives and our countries. God Bless you President Carter.

  • DianaW said:

    President Carter, you have always been one of the finest that human beings have to offer. Thank you for setting an example of true compassion for your fellow man. If only more would follow it.

  • David Corbitt said:

    I love this thought “The evidence shows that investing in women and girls delivers major benefits for society. An educated woman has healthier children. She is more likely to send them to school. She earns more and invests what she earns in her family.”

    She herself is healthier, contributing more powerfully to the world in desperate need of her.

    It takes great sacrifice, humility, and conviction to “sever” ties with what has meant so much to you for so many years. I love you for that! Standing up for all of God’s children and renouncing oppression where ever found is rewarded here and now as well as eternally. I admire your courage.

    My prayer is that our system changes so that more courageous people may stand up like a prophet of old without fearing the systemic ramifications. We should not have to wait until “the coast is clear” and our careers are not negatively impacted or destroyed.

    After completing seminary training this spring I am learning that all faiths must dig in ernest for the truths contained in their (and my) sacred texts. It is not about the words or individual verses, it is about the strength we gain in the digging process. And if one verse frees women and another enslaves them, then we must dig for the truth speaking to us. Taking the whole of scripture in context AND NOT pulling out one verse for self-justification.

    Thank you for your compassion and courage. And most importantly for speaking out publicly! Bless you

  • Ellen Peel said:

    President Carter has always been intelligent, thoughtful and fair! A great example for others, just hope they grasp the message.

  • Renée Layberry said:

    Just…beautiful. Absolutely beautiful. Bless you, Jimmy Carter! You’ve given me some hope today.

  • Audree said:

    I so agree with your words, President Carter. I have given up on organized religion because of their hiprocacy and radical beliefes. Our
    GOD is a peaceful, kind and forgiving GOD, and I will not have a man, or woman, tell me I cannot take communion in any other church. My Communion is between GOD and my self, and I will take it anywhere. (Even in my own back yard with GOD’s beauty all around me.) Thankyou for making my decision to break from the traditional organized religion easier to accept. My faith and belief are deep and strong, and I, with GOD’s help, will prevail. PS I’m in my 70′s and this decission did not come easily!

  • Gayla D'Gaia said:

    Thank you President Carter for your act of pure heart! God loves you so much as you love God so much! May your awakened statements serve to help others see beyond the tyranny of abuses made in the name of religion that many are lead to believe to be the truth when in fact, these beliefs and acts only represent how futile it is to discount and dominate any other human beings. God is greater than any concepts humans place on any group because in all groups are people who know what love truly is. 1 Corinthians 13 vs 1- 13 says that above all things, the greatest thing to know is love. In all groups are people who do not love and in all groups are people who do love, who know love, who know they are love. No other group can ever dominate love because love is greater than the reasoning of a child (meaning one who is immature and not yet wise), it allows us to see ourselves in the pure mirror of love sooner or later. Thankfully, women and many in the world are awakening to the knowledge that love for ourselves is also our salvation and in allowing love to awaken fully on the inside, within us, we reclaim our ability to put an end to abuses of ourselves for none other can free our minds save ourselves.
    Blessings, Brother Carter!

  • Kim L. Hubbard said:

    Once again, President Jimmy Carter shows his grace, class and dignity. He had been so unfairly judged during his presidency and even after. Even as an Atheist, I admire and respect his faith. He doesn’t just talk the talk, … he lives it honestly every day. Thank you sir.

  • Susan McMann said:

    I just love to hear you speak whenever the opportunity presents itself, Mr. Carter. I have always greatly respected you, for your dignity, for your intelligence, for your diplomacy which seems to come so naturally to you, and also for your faith in tackling international conflict resolution with your Carter Center with such grace. Thank you for all you have done for America, and for the world.

  • Homer said:

    Shame on Jimmy Carter for perpetuating the myth of the pay gap. Other than that, good for him.

  • Laurentia said:

    Thank you.

  • JanThom said:

    Thank you, President Carter. You have always held my respect and admiration, now even more so. It takes courage to stand up to the “vocal majority.” – Isn’t it sad that the “men” who subjugate women have such a low self esteem that they need to use their physical strength to prove themselves; to control others. The truth is that it takes a real man to lift up others. – We have been taught that the American Indian was “inferior” to the European invaders, but in many tribes, the woman was revered, the head of the lineage, thus allowing the male to protect her, showing his strength in preserving the future. Amazing, isn’t it? – The issue of control, to which it all boils down, is not confined to other continents, but is found right here, in the U.S.A! Rape, beating, killing of women is quite prevalent in our society. How many times have we heard, “She’s the first woman to …,” as if it were surprising that a mere woman could accomplish something. – Both genders have a moral duty and right to uplift, support, elevate, encourage, protect, motivate, inspire, promote, foster, nurture, safeguard, shield, validate the importance of one another. In so doing, we are earning and feeling our own self esteem. The tallest man stoops to lift another, male or female. = I have always found it sad that humans must destroy someone or something to make themselves seem important. I pray for the day when there will be no male/female, black/white, straight/gay, young/old divisions. We’re humans. Period. God Bless you/us all!

  • Betsy Hine said:

    So well stated! President Carter, come to the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), a denomination that has for a long time ordained women and in all ways given women and men an equal chance to show the love of God throughout the world. God bless you for standing up to bigotry and sexism! The Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) would be thrilled to have you be a part of its family.

  • Randy Perkins said:

    I always liked Jimmy—an honest man with honest motives! I had a similar experience with religion; our’s was the ‘Conservative Baptist’ movement. Once I’d seen the first of their errors many more became gradually apparent. That’s not to say God or the Bible should be rejected! Only the clergy & religionists who twist the Scriptures to their own (and Satan’s) ends.

    Any rational examination of the Bible makes it abundantly clear that there is ‘true religion’ and false religion. Satan started his rebellion by lying about God and misleading the first human pair. Although he targeted Eve, the defection of mankind into sin and death is consistently credited to Adam; he was the one whom God rightly held responsible!

    Liar that he is, Satan’s big gun is false (counterfeit) religion! That includes nationalism—which for many today is their religion. The true religion does not favor one nation over another, Jesus died for all mankind—men and women. Among those counterfeit religions are the many confusing sects of Christendom—all the branches of Catholic, Orthodox, Protestant & Anglican.

    True religion upholds Bible truth; unites people of all races in peace; honors the true God, JEHOVAH; and is more available than ever before! Very soon God’s Kingdom in the hands of Jesus Christ will destroy false religion & remove all nationalistic divisions.

    COME, LORD JESUS!!! :-)

  • Donna Desj said:

    Mr. President, thank you. So proud that this country can claim you as a citizen. As an elder – would have been so easy to sit back and “retire”. You continue to lead.

  • norma crespo said:

    I have always admired and loved Jimmy Carter and his commitment to equality and justice for all regardless of gender makes me even prouder of him. God bless this truly righteous man!

  • EHS said:

    Powerful words, President Carter. You are truly one of our most valuable intellects. The idea of The Elders is intriguing. I wonder who they could be? Whoever you are, it’s nice to know that force of good exists. Thank you, Sir.

  • Sally said:

    Thank You Jimmy!
    This is the most honest and brave assessment of religious hierarchy that I’ve read in my lifetime.
    I love my church, and our female pastor. Come join our church Jimmy!

  • Robert King said:

    I applaud Jimmy Carter for taking this position publicly. His organization, “The Elders” has proclaimed “The justification of discrimination against women and girls on grounds of religion or tradition, as if it were prescribed by a Higher Authority, is unacceptable.” I totally agree, but if it’s written in the Bible or Koran doesn’t that supposedly make it “prescribed by a Higher Authority” ? Also: “The carefully selected verses found in the Holy Scriptures to justify the superiority of men owe more to time and place…” Does this mean that SOME of the bible is not literal and is relative to it’s era? Some, but not all? Who decides?

    Again, let’s hear it for Jimmy Carter, but reasonable and compassionate religious moderates often seem not to acknowledge the implications of what they are saying. All religious belief is subjective. Religious texts may hold great wisdom, valuable history, colorful myth, but they are NOT the “word of God”!

  • Religion or Equality | Jandoe87's Blog said:

    [...] blog of Carter here. Like this:Like [...]

  • Linda Kettell said:

    I am so very proud that I cast mt first Presidential vote for this man. He makes me proud to be an American, a democrat , and a women. Thank you, Mr. President.

  • Diane Rosewall said:

    Dear Mr. President. I have always been proud of my 2 votes for you as our president and what you have been as our most active and servant ex-president. Today I weep because you had to leave your beloved church because of their stance against women. God bless you..and I know He ( or She) does! Thank you for your eloquent words and life!

  • Curt Hill said:

    I have always deeply honored and respected this man. I think history will be very kind to Jimmy Carter, and acknowledge his courage of conviction and his stand for human rights globally. A great human being.

  • Helen Pop said:

    If the U.S. Senate holds another hearing on CEDAW (the U.N. Convention to Eliminate Discrimination Against Women)the way it did a few years back, my fervent hope is that President Carter will testify in favor of U.S. ratification. What a heartfelt and moving stand he has taken! Thank you.

  • Catherine Fogarty said:

    Thank you, President Carter! I am grateful to you and the other Elders, for all that you are doing to support all of God’s children…..

  • Linda Spyhalski said:

    Thank you! You are my hero!

  • mettahu said:

    What a courageous thing to do! My hat is off to Jimmy Carter, a man of conscience and great faith.

  • Boise Idaho said:

    You don’t get to be a President without being extremely wise.

  • Dr. Rena Leto said:

    Amen, President Carter! You are truly a wise man who understands Biblical history, and more so, you understand the Bible. Absolutely NO ONE is more dangerous in this world than an ignorant person who takes up a cause on behalf of God who has no real understanding of the circumstances in which certain scriptures were written. Millions of people have suffered and died due to this pure ignorance. And, this continues in our country as well as around the world. Thank you, President Carter, for your stand. It has always bothered me when I hear people condemning your presidency. If there were any failures, they were due to your refusal to behave in the manner of so many
    unscrupulous politicians. Politics is a mean and dirty business. I pray that your contributions will be recognized as they should some day.

  • dr pepper said:

    Best Ex President ever!

  • Al Manly said:

    It’s difficult to not like this guy! Living (in the English speaking world) is to be exposed to seemingly endless bigotry and it’s such a delight to hear what’s right and true.
    You have reinforced my faith in an American people that produce and occasionaly elect such fine leaders. Thank you President Carter for this totally sweet breath of fresh air!

  • Vernon Moyse said:

    President Carter has long been one of the most moral of Presidents. His attitude to the Palestinian people as well as to women is exemplary. The “right wing” in America have reviled him as “weak” when he has always been courageously restrained and moderate. As an intellect he makes George W Bush look like the village idiot being pushed to a fro by the Cheney’s of this world. As an ardent English monarchist, I happily say, “thank you, Mr President”. If President Obama had his courage, we might see some results out of the second term of office.

  • Christofer Aven said:

    God bless you, President Carter! My tears of joy and elation are due to your courageous stand, and that of the rest of the Elders. Thank you thank you thank you!

  • MC said:

    In the New Testament, Jesus said that killing is wrong…this was also stated in the Old Testament. So how is the killing of innocent babies, in the womb, considered okay? Does that really help us women? I disagree….

  • Tina said:

    Worldly is not to be confused with Godly.

  • Bria Foster said:

    I am a Christian woman who believes what the Bible says. I also obtained a 4.0 gpa through undergrad and grad school at a prestigious university, so I’m no dummy. God said that women should submit to their husbands because having two bosses doesn’t work. The Bible doesn’t say we’re unequal, only different. The Bible also says husbands are supposed to lay down their lives for their wives like Christ did for the church…but no one ever mentions that part. My husband has a way harder job than I do. People in this culture are far more in love with their own political correctness than God’s beautiful plan. There are consequences for that.

  • Carol Willard said:

    I am SO proud you are a true southern gentleman and was proud to vote for you. I am MOST proud of your choices you have made in support of equality of all people.

  • Perdiendo mi religión por la igualdad … por Jimmy Carter | Evangelizadoras de los apóstoles said:

    [...] http://www.womenspress-slo.org/?p=11440 Share this:FacebookGoogle +1PinterestImprimirCorreo electrónicoStumbleUponRedditLinkedInTwitterTumblrDiggMe gusta:Me gusta Cargando… [...]

  • Geoff Pallett said:

    My hat’s off to you, sir. Very plain speaking, yet eloquent and forceful at the same time. Thanks to you for having the integrity to say what needs to be said. This, from a fellow woodworker.

  • Genevieve said:

    I just want to add my accolades to President Carter and the rest of the Elders – we NEED their voice and commitment to address some of the horrors still institutionalized against females.

  • Susan said:

    I would vote for him again (which would make 3 times). He is a g.o.o.d. man. 💎

  • Dr Frank M. Hyde said:

    As I see it you did not leave your religion. Your religion is not the Southern Baptist Convention; that is a denomination. You espose truths that are necessary for the role of women in the church and in society. I left SBC for greater truth that I came to declare through the Church of God Reformation Movement. This article sounds on line with much of their teaching.

  • jkhaftorson said:

    As an ordained clergywoman in the United Methodist Church, President Carter has put so eloquently in words what clergywomen have been proclaiming for years. As I am also Asian American, I have experienced racism and sexism from male collegues who are advocates of equal rights–for themselves. Thank you, President Carter, for your challenge and your courage to do what is right and in the name of Jesus.

  • I Was Unaware Jimmy Carter Finally Told The Southern Baptists To Shove It | Marc Valdez Weblog said:

    [...] lifetime of increasingly-misogynistic hatred directed by Southern Baptists towards women finally proved too much for Jimmy Carter to stomach: [...]

  • Pat Bailey said:

    Dear President Carter:

    I am a retired Army chaplain and continue to serve as a Presbyterian pastor. It was with great sadness that I witnessed the withdrawal of endorsement by the Southern Baptist Convention of its many very dedicated and effective women chaplains about ten years ago. For a long time this was the only kind of pastoral ministry the Convention allowed for women, but then in its turn toward a more extreme view, even this expression of female ministry was eliminated. The chaplaincy and the soldiers they serve were deminished by that decision. Thank you for your brave and difficult decision and for your continued leadership and service to our nation and the people of the world.
    Peace,
    Pat Bailey

  • Janet Tabares said:

    This is truly an inspirational man. President Carter, I commend you for speaking out on this subject. While you are not currently in the White House, you are most assuredly a leader.

  • Ron Bibler said:

    I guess like Mr Carter you are not born again and you can’t see God or understand his wisdom. As Jesus the they have ears but can here. Eyes but can’t see. This has been Mr Carters problem all along.

    Cry out to God… ask him to forgive you of your sin. Only then can your eyes be opened.

    Can you humble yourself as a child?

  • Tricia Hynes said:

    I have tears in my eyes reading this. I admire Jimmy Carter more than ever now. How very courageous.
    Thank you, Mr President.
    Tricia Hynes

  • jim funk said:

    I wonder if Mr. Carter has read The Alphabet verses the Goddess by Leonard Shlain?

  • Even a Devout Baptist Can See the Problem | Our End of the 'Net said:

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  • Peter Fritz said:

    Dear President Carter – Thank you for your service to our nation as a farmer, Governor and President. Thank you for your service throughout the world on behalf of the good and the right. You are an inspiration to all of us. Regarding your crisis of conscience, may I suggest that you and the other Elders have not actually left your respective religions. I believe your churches, your mosques, your congregations have drifted away from the basic tenets of your religions over the years. In your case, your actions in the world prove that you are a true witness and disciple for Jesus Christ – a man of inclusion and affirmation. Your reward will be great in heaven.

  • Alan said:

    So, since the 4th century, men have misrepresented the intentions of the Higher Power, resulting in the subjugation of women. And how did the Higher Power react to this travesty? With silence. Gee, I wonder if the Higher Power has been paying attention.

  • Whayneneal said:

    Is this the same guy whose party is responsible for the slaughter of millions of baby girls in the womb? What a hypocrite. Give me a break.

  • Robin said:

    Thank you President Carter!!!

  • Jason Arsenault said:

    Rather inaccurate title given the substance of his message. Was that really the title of his speech or, something a headline writer here came up with?

  • Kay Darwin said:

    Thank you, President Carter. My admiration for your courage in articulating truth—I don’t have words to express my emotional and intellectual response.

  • Pat Steele said:

    I read the White House Diary of Jimmy Carter, and lamented America’s discounting of his intellect and his leadership. He grew to be one of our foremost middle east statesmen, brokering peace and understanding between warring factions in Israel, Palestine and Syria, and even though that peace was short-lived, his contribution could not be denied.

  • Sonia Sheridan said:

    President Jimmy Carter is an honorable man.

  • Evelyn Schuette said:

    Dear President Carter,

    I teared up reading your beautifully written letter earlier today. I then immediately copied it and brought it to the priest of the Episcopal church where I am the church musician. I just now returned from our Good Friday liturgy where I also talked about it with choir members and suggested they read it for themselves on my FB. You have also sacrificed much personally for the good of many and will surely continue to do so. Your letter and the work of the Elders gives a light of hope for all. I hope and pray that this eloquent letter spreads across the world in these next days and that thinking and caring people of all nations and cultures will be inspired to move towards change. May God continue to bless you, your family and your work.

    Evelyn Schuette
    PS My father designed, constructed, delivered and installed the steeple for the Plains church about 40 years ago…

  • Denis said:

    Ironic that you have to reject Christianity in order to be considered a christian.

  • Becky said:

    Such beautiful words from a wonderful person, President and leader – funny how so many people missed that about you – we live in a very hard world and I have always admired how insightful you have always been about many many things! God’s Peace

  • sybilla said:

    WOW! Finally a respected Christian leader proves to follow Christs’s teachings .HE never put women down!

  • Maureen Cribbs said:

    Thank you, Jimmy Carter! I liked you as president, have respected your activities afterwards, and can’t think of anyone more wonderful to uphold the beliefs stated in the above message. I know that statement will reverberate throughout the world. As you’ve said, it’s not only religious leaders who must make the changes which will create a wonderful society for all human beings. I also think it must begin with our youth, children in all economic strata must understand the basic sense of caring for each other and respect for all persons in order that a sense of safety and well being can become the birthright for each person

    . All adults are responsible as well, not only parents!

  • Jerry said:

    I have always been proud of President Carter. He is an example of how every human being should live. Peace be with you, President Carter.

  • Tree said:

    Thank you for your inspiring and empowering words! You are a true leader and humanist! You give me hope for the future! Thank you.

  • Aurora said:

    I have always thought of President Carter as a humanitarian. Reading the article encouraged my heart to make sure that all women are given the opportunity to succeed. He reminded me of my father and grandfathers who always said I could do anything and be something. My admiration extends to the way you are able to see the whole picture and thank you for continuing to be inspiring.

  • Madame DeFarge said:

    Well duh….

  • Sally De Santis said:

    I feel President Carter had an unfortunate term in office. Since he left the White House, he has become a leader in humanitarian issues. This is the letter of a deeply principled man and a true man of faith. Thank you, President Carter.

  • Rick James said:

    Dear Mr. Carter,
    Again you are my hero! Honest and true, patient and kind. For forty years I have believed that the source of women attaining their birthright of full and true equality is directly attributable to men of understanding speaking out on their behalf. We are two wings of a bird women and men and both flap somewhat differently but must compliment each other for the bird to fly. You make us aspire to the summits of promise, Mr. Carter, you are a real hero again, Thank you.

  • Brenda Sherburn said:

    Mr President Carter, thank you for your clear and powerful words supporting women’s right to religious equality. You so eloquently expressed how this inequality filters down in everyday life to discriminate and control women. And YES, to quote you, “This is in clear violation not just of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights but also the teachings of Jesus Christ, the Apostle Paul, Moses and the prophets, Muhammad, and founders of other great religions – all of whom have called for proper and equitable treatment of all the children of God. It is time we had the courage to challenge these views.” I bow to you with my blessings.

  • Ann Stoddard said:

    Bravo President Carter! You have done it again. You have always stood up for human rights. You are a true LEADER.
    Thank you!!!!

  • Kathy winsted said:

    Well said, Mr. president! Thank you for calling out religious leaders for supporting inequality by hiding behind Bible passages.

  • Mirja Keesee said:

    Thank you President Carter. I have admired your work with Habitat for Humanity and now I respect you even more for making a hard decision regarding the Baptist Church and standing up for women’s equality. You have touched so many people with this.

  • Melinda said:

    I remember as a kid growing up in South Africa seeing President Carter speak on TV and my parent’s and other present company laughing at him and making peanut farmer jokes. I was about 10 and knew nothing about politics but remember liking what him and what he had just said and wondering why they were so against him. To this day I do not agree with my parents on politics it was always evident that he is a great man.

  • CF McCann said:

    Amen, President…!

  • Judy Trammell said:

    Dear President Carter:

    Thank you sir for standing up for what you believe in and in doing so, honoring all women throughout the globe. I appreciate you!!

  • Patty Hakey said:

    So what will he be now? non denominational or perhaps convert to Judaism? I just curious.

  • Pamela said:

    We may not all have the position, title, or privilege of President Carter, but we can take actions within our own scope of influence to continue to make positive inroads for true social justice in our homes, places of employment, and even in our churches. Inspiring.

  • Kathy Kali said:

    Yes! Well said and timely. May more and more men stand up and support women’s rights & freedoms.

  • Ken said:

    One doesn’t have to be a woman to agree with Mr Carter’s position. I too always had a respect for this President, and feel that he was badly treated. Glad to see that he is still making personal choices for the betterment of everyone.

  • margaret imle said:

    I have long admired this man for his work with Habitat for Humanity, an example of putting beliefs into action. His separation from the Southern Baptist Convention must have been difficult but obviously is done after great examination of the issues. I believe President Carter and the international group of Elders have much to say. It is too bad that western societies do not traditionally honor the advice and experience of their elders. They have much to give and should be better used. It is a courageous thing to speak out. I note that Jimmy Carter gives back to American society and the world village with great humility, not seeking fame or political advantage. He seeks no publicity for his service to the world. I thank him for his service and shared wisdom. I would like to add to his complimentary assessment of women that no war in world history was ever initiated and perpetuated by women. It was only when women became involved that wars were ended. That must have taken a lot of guts, considering how little value men have historically placed on women. Thank you Mr Carter!

  • grandmacarol said:

    Well written, President Carter. You are a man I deeply admire, even more so when I read this article. Thank you for your wise and courageous comments. Would that more would see the world the way you and the other elders do!

  • dan said:

    Mr. Carter,
    You are totally awesome. I saw you catch a trout in Georgia and thought, way to go Mr. Carter. All I wanted for you then was peace and I want that for you now. Thank you for standing up for what is right. You inspired me to help build houses for the homeless though I don’t remember the name of the cause…
    Thank you also for standing up for truth where ever you find it, God bless you and yours, and thanks from a proud veteran, you rock!!!!

  • Darrell Swanson said:

    Way to go Jimmy Carter! This is one of the best written articles ever written on behalf of all females…God bless you and those who are working with other leaders to elevate them as equals with men in every society.
    They have far too long been viewed as 2nd class citizens…this is good news!!

  • Nancy Martin said:

    I have long respected Jimmy Carter and the group known as the Elders. This is yet another reason for that respect.

  • Deb Bolgla said:

    In deepest admiration for this humble, wise, and enlightened human being.

  • Abigail said:

    “But my fellow Elders and I, who come from many faiths and backgrounds, no longer need to worry about winning votes or avoiding controversy – and we are deeply committed to challenging injustice wherever we see it.”

    I was actually pleasantly surprised about what I was reading until I got to the part copied above. Jimmy Carter goes out of his way to criticize those who are in a position he once held, and therefore should know how difficult the position is. He should be aware that the information afforded to the POTUS is not information that is freely available to any random American. The POTUS is in a position where he must worry about votes. That’s the messed up system that we have in the US. I think it’s incredibly ignorant of Jimmy Carter to publicly call on leaders who are in those difficult positions he once held to change their actions in a way that Jimmy Carter did not do while in office. Criticism is deserved, there is no doubt. But to be publicly criticized by a former POTUS is an insult and another repulsive double standard.

    Jimmy Carter, I had difficulty respecting your outspoken nature before reading this article and given your continued self-righteous attitude contained herein, I still have difficulty respecting your outspokenness. Thank you for speaking out for women, but to think you could even begin to place yourself on a pedestal next to Nelson Mandela is laughable.

  • Madelyn Griffith-Haynie said:

    I know that God blesses you for standing for LOVE for all of God’s creation, and for being a man of Integrity who places his stand as a Christian over his continued allegiance to the sad and sorry misinterpretations of the misguided “leadership” a single religious organization.

    I’m so sorry that you were forced to make this difficult choice by those who are so steeped in fear they could not find their way to Love, even while I SO admire you for making it – and for taking so public a stand.

    Madelyn Griffith-Haynie, CMC, SCAC, MCC
    - ADD Coaching Field co-founder -
    (ADDandSoMuchMore and ADDerWorld – dot com!)
    “It takes a village to transform a world!”

  • Tom said:

    Yet so many women continue to participate. I’ll never understand it.

  • Aly said:

    Once again I was reminded why I have looked up to President Carter’s unmatched integrity and honor since my teenage years. He reminds me of the true meaning of what it is to be human and useful. Thanks for all the many years of service and love you have given to the world. Especially thanks for providing me a new means to describe what I had thought about but could never so eloquently put into words.

  • Baxter Labatos said:

    Now that is the best article i have read so far this week. Thank you Jimmy Carter for being a beacon of light in a world of hatred and discrimination.

  • Jeanne Phoenix said:

    Dear President Carter:
    Thank you for being one of the few male human beings to have the intelligence and common sense, and courage to speak out on the behalf of women around the world, and I love you. It’s about time that this has been acknowledged, I always loved you when you were the President, and this makes you an even greater human being than what you already were.

    with Gratitude, Respect, and Admiration

  • jimmy carter is wrong said:

    Apparently, Jimmy Carter does not read his Bible as well as he says.

    Jesus does not uphold homosexual behavior.

    Jimmy Carter does not speak for Jesus. Jesus’s own words speak for Jesus.

    Jesus did and does love every one. He proved that by going to the cross and dying for an entire Human race.

    And for every sinner…not what we like to be called…

    …but, we all are, and , thankfully He did.

    This Easter marks the resurrection from the dead to give us Eternal life.

    Matthew 19:1-8
    King James Version (KJV)
    19 And it came to pass, that when Jesus had finished these sayings, he departed from Galilee, and came into the coasts of Judaea beyond Jordan;

    2 And great multitudes followed him; and he healed them there.

    3 The Pharisees also came unto him, tempting him, and saying unto him, Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife for every cause?

    4 And he answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female,

    5 And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh?

    6 Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.

    7 They say unto him, Why did Moses then command to give a writing of divorcement, and to put her away?

    8 He saith unto them, Moses because of the hardness of your hearts suffered you to put away your wives: but from the beginning it was not so.

  • jimmy carter is wrong said:

    IF Jimmy Carter Condemned Islam…

    and the “homophobic,” sexist jihadist murderers who raped and killed our Libyan Ambassador

    I might be inclined to give him more credit.

    But, he speaks in political expediency not in truth.

  • S said:

    Muhammad’s teachings do not call for proper and equitable treatment of all the children of God. Women (of all faiths), Jewish people, Christian people, homosexuals, etc etc. and in effect ALL non-muslims are considered in his hate-filled teachings as people to be reviled, conquered, converted, controlled or eliminated. I do not believe Muhammad’s teachings should be equated with the teachings of Jesus Christ, the Apostle Paul, Moses and the prophets. Otherwise, Kudos to Jimmy Carter’s courage.

  • Camilla Kich Noren said:

    Mr President and the other Elders, thank you for not retiring, you are needed and hopefully will all your experience, good thoughts, unity and love for all Gods people on earth weigh in heavy and make a difference whatever time it may take. God bless your continuous work.

  • DanSwift said:

    The most principled, sincere, & selfless man I can recall. President Carter has genuinely worked hard for the common people as opposed to corporations throughout his life. I applaud him and extend to him (and his wife) my sincere thanks for showing the US and the world the way we all should and could be. His actions speak volumes.

  • Lance Kostrobala said:

    How wonderful, Mr. president. You have always been one of my favorite Presidents.

    This is a bold move on your part and very appreciated. Yet I am surprised, saddened and disappointed however, that with your support for equality you make no mention of the LGBTQ people of the world who are also denied their freedom and equality, also based on similar scriptures that have been used to deny women their rights.

    You say: “It is simply self-defeating for any community to discriminate against half its population (women). . . . my fellow Elders and I, who come from many faiths and backgrounds . . . are deeply committed to challenging injustice wherever we see it. . . . ”

    Now that you have been willing to part with your church after six decades because of its extremely narrow view on life, I look forward to SOON reading your support for all LGBTQ individuals throughout the world – in words that are as stirring as you use for your support of women. Such an act will only add to the momentum that LGBTQ people have developed since the Stonewall riots of 1969 in America. It began then and there has been no turning back since!

  • Jullie Griffin said:

    Jimmy Carter what a great person you are to see clearly what is happening and to speak the truth though it may be unpopular. May you continue to do great work for many more years.

  • fiona clai brown said:

    I also thank Mr.Carter who is giving voice to the needs of women all over the world.
    Its necessary to point out that men will feel so much better about themselves-so much more empowered in their happiness-if they just could give and allow freedom and partnership with their women..?

  • Links for your Saturday morning coffee. | Fibro Feist said:

    [...] Gosh I love Jimmy Carter. [...]

  • Tony Scimeca said:

    Wonderful to wake up this morning to read the statement from former President Jimmy Carter. Now lets see who else will follow.

    The world of humanity is possessed of two wings: the male and the female. So long as these two wings are not equivalent in strength, the bird will not fly. Until womankind reaches the same degree as man, until she enjoys the same arena of activity, extraordinary attainment for humanity will not be realized; humanity cannot wing its way to heights of real attainment. When the two wings . . . become equivalent in strength, enjoying the same prerogatives, the flight of man will be exceedingly lofty and extraordinary.

    From the sacred writings of the Baha’i Faith

  • Krista Behymer said:

    I have long admired President Carter for his integrity and compassion; he is a true leader.

  • Ian Cordner said:

    Mr. Carter & the Elders have it right, especially with regard to selective interpretion of the Christian holy book. I would suggest that same can be said for gay equality including same-gender marriage!

  • Noel McGeeney said:

    me-thinks all our communities need wise ones, elders if you like, to present principles and values, without fear or favour.

  • James said:

    So refreshing to see a humanitarian that was President!

  • Jane Maple said:

    “The truth is that male religious leaders have had – and still have – an option to interpret holy teachings either to exalt or subjugate women.”
    It’s a great thing for him to have come this far. Now let him read his own words quoted here and consider that the whole edifice of organised religion is based on the interpretation of a book full of conflicting writings produced by pre-technical peasants 2000 years ago.

  • Orion said:

    President Carter is one of the bravest men of our time and one of the most philosophically sound. I have always considered him the best President the US has ever had, and one of the soundest political leaders the world has seen– and the above underlines his commitment to equality and humanism despite the costs to himself.

    My best regards to you sir.

  • LibFran said:

    Thank you Mr. President!

    Many of us in the Elder category are with you; you were more articulate than most.

    I know that leaving your church had to have been extremely difficult. From time to time I struggle with…stay or leave.

    Bless you and I know that God does!

  • Karen Markins said:

    Thank you Jimmy Carter and The Elders. So eloquently said. Simple courage and wisdom is what we need. It’s what we need so desperately. God Bless you.

  • Christine Longford said:

    Pathetic. I can’t believe this man was president. Get with the times. We no longer need to seek sage advice from dogma. If we are accepting this kind of character as an ” elder” we are really in deep trouble. Another saviour? Come on, wake up. It is up to humankind to create the kind of world we need for future generations NOT religious fanatics.

  • Cynthia said:

    President Carter, I struggle with the issues you’ve raised here every time I go to church. I am at a loss. I don’t have the strength or courage to sever ties with my Church but it always difficult going, listening to the homily, and finding that I have no place, that I do not belong. And then when I am counted, it is always as a lesser being. I have taken to focusing on my relationship with God and not necessarily with a religion. I don’t know if that is right or wrong, but for now, that is what works for me.

    Thank you for being you and bringing this issue to the fore. Again.

  • Hugh David Isherwood said:

    Just a few days ago I wrote this and it seems relevant. It is how we can interpret or don’t interpret.

    Luke: 24:1-12: “But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, they came to the tomb, taking the spices that they had prepared. They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but they went in, they did not find the body. While they were perplexed about this…… “why do you look for the living among the dead?” He is not here he is risen. Then they remembered his words…..they told all this to the eleven and to all the rest. But these words seemed to them an idle tale, and they did not believe them. But Peter, got up and ran to the tomb; stooping and looking in, he saw the linen cloths by themselves; then he went home amazed at what had happened.”

    We know the familiar story that leads to a great celebration of resurrection. It is a story of victory over death. It is a proof that the Lord our Savior Jesus Christ solidifies this fundamental belief within Christianity. I invite you to look at some deeper meanings.

    Let’s start with Courage. When we think of courage – what comes to mind? Is our image of courage and the characteristics of courage generally clothed in macho apparel? Do we make the connection that courage requires a tough exterior that is absent of fear; requiring some unseen or unusual strength? Do we see courage as requiring some innate powerful ability to withstand and overcome adversity? Do we see courage as a bold unwavering stance that shows disregard for personal consequences? Are these not typically associated with the masculine and in the process of that association we unknowingly denigrate the characteristics associated with the feminine?

    Yet here in this story, Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the other women show true courage. They lead us not only to the tomb but to the display of courage that is the true expression of heartfelt action. The root of the word courage is “cor” – the Latin word for heart. In one of its earliest forms, the word courage literally had a different meaning than it does today. Courage originally meant “to speak one’s mind by telling all one’s heart.”

    Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James and the other women went to the so called “Apostles” To speak their minds by telling them of their heartfelt experience while in the tomb. The women in this story show great courage, a courage that came from their open and yearning hearts. They were led through the danger to arrive at the tomb and then into the tomb. It has them fearlessly overcoming any personal consequences, following their heartfelt calling with faith and trust. Is this like the lilies of the field? The woman approach without worry, without toil because the courage that they display truly emanates from their hearts, their true essence. Are not the women in this story the true courageous Apostles? They became the courageous because they “told all” their heart felt experience. The true Apostles, the remaining eleven, did not believe the hearts of the woman. To them it was an “idle tale, and they did not believe them.”

    The women had the courage to enter the tomb. Peter did not. Peter “stooped and looked in and then went home amazed at what had happened.” In this instance Peter does not live up to the definition or the role of an Apostle.

    We might hear this Sunday how this passage celebrates our risen Lord. Yet that seems in some way to blemish some of the deeper meanings that this passage can offer. Perhaps we can enter into our own tomb and come face to face with our divine essence and move from head felt to heart felt. That would truly take courage, to enter deeply into the parts of us that we keep locked away in the tomb. The stone is rolled away not to let Jesus out but to let the Apostles enter. Can we enter into our own tomb? Perhaps we can challenge our own perspective of our True Self. Perhaps we can challenge our idea of courage, our patriarchal culture, institutions, and organizations that perpetuate the false patriarchal paradigm. Perhaps we can challenge our culture and our society where men are taught to deny the feminine aspects of themselves. How can we obtain wholeness when parts of us are denied? With heartfelt courage, can we dare ourselves to venture into our own tomb and into the darkest parts of ourselves and facilitate our own resurrection where we move from being the dead among the living to the living? This requires something. It requires faith, trust, and equally important, courage. It does not require a “belief” or “proof.”

  • Georgene Winkler said:

    President Carter has always been a great humanitarian and a very intelligent man. What a wonderful article and such a strong personal stand to take. I could not be prouder of him. Thank you Mr. President for believing in your convictions.

  • Mel said:

    Hopefully in our near future many more people will be enlighten by this epiphany. We need to stop training our daughters to serve men and instead teach them to take care of themselves first.

  • Anne said:

    How eloquently he expressed what has bothered me about my childhood religion for as long as I can remember. I don’t consider myself a feminist, in many ways I am a tradionalist, but I want it to be MY decision and not some men in cleric garb. Thank you, Mr. President, maybe someone will listen to you.

  • Rita Williams said:

    Whilst it must have taken great courage to leave his religion, Carter could perhaps have achieved more by speaking up from within. Voices from outside tend to be treate as “those non-believers, who do not understand” From within the faith, the voice carries weight and might start to change opinions.

  • Mary Benton said:

    Jimmy Carter has seemingly always “seen the light”…a wise,extremely intelligent president who understand the needs of all peoples, in the U.S., as well as the world.

  • Wendy Bohaychuk said:

    From Brockville, Canada. Mr Carter, I have always admired you and even more so now. What a spectacular gesture to make for the good of the world.

  • Jennifer Rowe said:

    For as long as I can remember, I have always flipped first to the final pages of the Economist (…regular readers will know what I’m talking about) to try to find “my” hero. After lengthy consideration – as I expect my first child – I have decided to give him the middle name Carter. The former president is such an inspiration.

  • Edward J. Kular said:

    I think Jimmy Carter is absolutely Brilliant. This is Astonishing and so True. I feel this should be Translated into every Language in the World and Published as the First Chapter in every Book that is ever Printed. We should be Teaching this to our Children at a Very Early Age. We are all Born Equal. Love it. Thank You for this, President Jimmy Carter.

  • Susan said:

    Thank you so much Mr. president, for addressing such an important issue. Your decision must have been so difficult, as always I respect you and I am so proud of you.

  • Sue Engel said:

    My dear Mr. Carter. I am so proud of you speaking out about your beliefs and taking the Baptists to task. You are right. One little verse or two in the Bible should not be the way many live their lives. The women in our country still have to be more agressive (or assertive) to advance in our society. I just got back from a muslim nation and saw the women andgirls in their garb to hide their bodies. How archaic. I was very uncomfortable in their world. Thank God no man can dictate to me what I should be doing and how to do it. I admire you as a leader and a fellow Christain. Thank you for taking the stand as you did.

  • Pat Tine said:

    Stand up and cheer! Thank you, Pres. Carter, eloquently put. Please let us know how we can help.

  • Michael Sutton said:

    I am not a political man and therefore have not followed the career of President Jimmy Carter. Therefore, I can not comment on his previous opinions and/or endeavors. I am, however, an intelligent man and because of this I can read what President Carter has said in this article and agree that his comments and actions regarding this issue are brave, correct and inspiring. I am very interested in the group of Elders that the President speaks of and will certainly research the group more thoroughly as I would like to join their ranks, if possible. To be clear . . . I agree with Mr. Carter wholeheartedly and applaud him for his actions regarding women’s rights. I too, am continually upset by the actions of religious “leaders” in their purposeful misrepresentation and selective usage of God’s words. This has caused me to exclude myself from organized religion, (which is a man-made vehicle), in favor of seeking truth in spirituality. That being said, it is not important what I think. I am sure that God is pleased with Mr. Carter. One last note: I was dismayed to see that hardly any men have taken the time to comment on this important issue. Speak up!

  • WayTooLate said:

    Let’s see, it only took Jimmy Carter 88 years to figure this out? Tens of millions of people have known for decades that discrimination against women simply makes no sense. In the article, Carter clearly demonstrates his lack of fortitude and admits that politics outranked his “faith” when he says in paragraph eight, that he and other elders are taking this position publicly because they, “no longer need to worry about winning votes or avoiding controversy.” Sorry, way too little, too late.
    Carter, while he is a good person, was a terrible president; his lack of experience and ability to influence and establish foreign policy cost the United States dearly in terms of respect and American lives. His fiscal ineptness allowed the country to descend into a hole that crippled American industry and contributed to the decline of the middle class. He was destined to go down in history as the worst president in history, until Obama. At least Carter was a good person that had a true respect for the Constitution and could be viewed as a true American. While Carter lacked the skills and experience to be president, it can at least be argued that his heart was in the right place. That is more than can be said for Obama. There is a fundamental and inexcusable problem when the US is sending ANY money overseas in foreign aid at the expense of our own people having to be furloughed out of jobs, our military men and women are being denied money for education, and when an American hero is being awarded the Medal of Honor, his family and fellow soldiers are forced to sit three rows back, while Obama’s buddies in congress are given the first two rows and acknowledged/photo opp’d before the family and soldiers.

  • Jack said:

    What is he talking about in the last paragraph — subjugation of women “is in clear violation [of] the teachings of Jesus Christ, the Apostle Paul, Moses and the prophets, Muhammad, and founders of other great religions”? Clear declarations of women’s subordination are contained in the Old & New Testaments and the Koran, and cannot be explained away without absurdity. Carter seems to know this; he’s careful to write that “all [founders of great religions] have called for proper and equitable [NB: NOT "EQUAL"] treatment of all the children of God.” “Proper & equitable” in 1st-millennium BC or 1st-c. AD Judea or 7th c. AD Arabia or 21st-c. Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Iran, Pakistan, India, etc., etc., is pretty far from what I’d bet every commenter on this page considers proper & equitable.

  • wprwll said:

    i am not an american but i am still proud of jimmy carter. and i support him wholeheartedly. wish he could run for prime minister!!
    actually…. i think he can help more if he remains in the private sector……..
    thankyou mr. carter. you have my respect and admiration.

  • SUZY said:

    THANK YOU MR. PRESIDENT YOU ARE AWESOME MAN…

  • Rachel Fox said:

    Mr. President, You never cease to impress me. I am so thankful that God continues to give you the strength to lead with your beautiful heart and mind. You have proven yourself over and over again to emulate the beautiful giving and caring spirit that Christ demonstrated for us here on earth, whether it is swinging a hammer or making personally difficult decisions to lend a powerful voice for the benefit of others. God bless you, and I will keep you and your group of elders in my prayers.

  • Diane said:

    Hear, hear!

  • Abe Baggins said:

    Such an honorable man…walking the walk…still growing, struggling, leading. He could have retired to his woodworking shop and farm but, instead, has chosen to stay engaged. We are all better off for it.

  • natsavali said:

    I grew up in a Christian family. Our family was one the first missionaries to set up missions as we tried to spread the Gospel throughout the Pacific. And, they are very traditional, interpreting the Bible in the most strict and literal of ways. imgrained in this old way of thinking. I rebelled against this notion of inequality toward women In the church and of course -being the grandson of a pastor – I was ridiculed by my family and called,a “hippy!” Thank you for this post. Courage to do what we all know is proper and right is what’s needed. Thank you for your courage.

  • Anna Maria said:

    I am filled with respect for Jimmy Carter. However, equal and civil rights for women must include the right to choose, vis a vis abortion. Otherwise, accidental pregnancy forces women into motherhood, and under these conditions, usually don’t make good mothers.

  • Andy P said:

    Thank you President Carter. A true 60′s hippie speaks…….

  • Karen Bell said:

    Thank You President Jimmy Carter. It takes a true man and a truthful soul to stand up for what is right. I have always loved and supported you.

  • Claiborn Crain said:

    Presudent Carter:
    Thank you for your courage, integrity and leadership. I do not recoginize the Southern Baptist of my youth and younger professional career. You are my Brooks Hayes.

    Claiborn Crain

  • Ann said:

    Thank you Mr. President! No one could have said it any better!
    I wish our Congress would do as great a job for the American People.

  • Susan Morton said:

    Thank you President Carter for this and for your untiring work around the globe for peace with justice.
    I recommend that all read a book entitled Half the Sky which speaks to the plight of women in an interesting, factual way. Its authors, a husband and wife journalistic team received the Pulitzer Prize for the book.

  • Jean Durel said:

    What a powerful statement. Thank you, President Carter, for your courageous stance. And thanks, also, to the Elders for their work to end discrimination against women and children.

  • Debbie D said:

    President Carter, I have never been so proud of a U.S. President as I am of you at this moment. Knowing your deep faith and the profound role that your religion has played in your life, I am deeply moved at your words and your actions. I realize the sacrifice you have made in holding to your convictions. An I am so grateful to you for speaking out so eloquently and with such passion. thank you on behalf of all women.

  • Rick Graf said:

    I hope historians treat Jimmy Carter better than the public treated him while he served as president of the United States. I think he’s a remarkable human being.

    In my opinion, his character is close to many of the Founding Fathers of America. He belongs to the Age of Reason, not the Digital Age. HIs authorship of this article is proof of that.

  • carol said:

    I have always thought you were the best human being and president that I have known. I have seen a few..being 66…I am so proud of you and thank you on behalf of my fellow gay citzens and women of this USA.

  • Sandra Muse Isaacs said:

    President Carter has always been so underrated as a president and as a humanitarian. His work with Habitat for Humanity has helped thousands of poor families around the world. I have always felt proud of him as a quiet, yet forceful leader when it comes to doing what is right, rather than what will get him fame or fortune. His statements will, hopefully, help the cause of improving the rights of women worldwide with such other strong leaders locking arms with him.

  • Dora said:

    President Carter is a hero, visionary and a humanitarian. The world needs more people like him . Please continue using your voice – it needs to be heard . Especially in our world today . God bless!!!

  • Cheryl Meakins said:

    Dear President Carter,

    Thank you for sharing your views on the equality of women. I too appreciate your stand for all women.

    I am wondering if you have left the Southern Baptist Convention or if you have left your faith?

    I believe the article indicates you have left this organization but not your faith and I pray that is the truth.

    Not all conservative churches believe that women are subject to men. I am a part of the Evangelical Covenant Church. And in their words the Holy Spirit does not discriminate against women when giving spiritual gifts, why should we?

    Just wanted to encourage you that there are churches who do believe in embracing women in equal giftedness.

    Thank you once again for your words and stand to help all women live out their calling.
    Cheryl Meakins

  • ria swift said:

    All I can say is it’s about freakin time. Yes, it’s a great thing these men are doing this and please don’t excuse them or pat them on the back like they’ve done something magnificent. They could have done it ages ago when their wives, daughters, mother’s, aunt’s etc. where being held back and in some case tortured, beaten or killed. Every woman I know is aware of this injustice. Because men FINALLY get it and are doing something about it, quite frankly, makes me a little sick. I think they should all be asking for forgiveness for not having done it sooner. Not that would be something to crow about. Why are you so quick to praise them for the obvious steps that first of all should never have happen in the first place. Time to really move on; equality and freedom for everybody, not just when men decide to catch up. Jeez!!!!!!!!!

  • divan fournier said:

    good job, keep the good work

  • Betty Kirkland said:

    I really like what I have read. at the time of his presidency I thought it was good to have a professing president in the U.S.A. and wondered since ,why he seemed so unpopular. I have felt uncomfortable ,more recently, about some of his alleged remarks but maybe he was misquoted.I hope so.

  • Betty Kirkland said:

    P.S. something happened,and the Word christian as was omitted
    before President

  • Jan Kinney said:

    Bravo, Mr. Carter, and thank you. It’s a blessing to have your powerful, prophetic voice in the world. You are truly living your Christian mandate.

  • Marty said:

    I have long admired President Carter’s quiet strength. I thank him again for continuing his crusade for humanity.

  • Marilyn king said:

    As a 1980 Olympian I still do not understand the pressures that influenced your decision to prevent us from fulfilling our dreams, and I still hold that you were one and continue to be one of our best presidents. Thank you for your courageous stand for equality. And I wish your pioneering action for the environment had been continued so we would be farther along in restoring balance with nature.

  • Jack A. Cole said:

    Now here is a man for whom I could vote for President.

  • S.O'Hara said:

    President Carter,
    This is very well said but I hope that what you mean is that you have given up your denomination; not your faith. I too am a believer, and what I believe is that Jesus is God with skin on. He humbled himself to walk among us as a human being so that he could show us how to live because we (as always) had messed everything up. He shocked the people of Palestine (under Roman rule at the time) when he challenged their notion that status was linked to nationality, wealth, career advancement, gender or age. He lifted up the downtrodden, ate with gentiles, discipled women, blessed children, washed his followers feet, and defied the leaders of the day. His message was one of humility and sacrifice. Many people criticize the Bible because there are so many examples of hate, inequality and violence in it. It’s important to recognize that the historical and biographical parts are a record of human insufficiency without God. All have fallen short. Much of the advice given to people of the times spoke specifically to different cultures (as imperfect as ours). Most importantly, God made us all and loves us all; but He set aside one nation (His Chosen people) not because He loved them more than the rest of creation, but because they are a critical part of His plan to save us all. He tasked them with preserving His Word until the time would come for that Word to become flesh and dwell among us.

  • Alan Hymen said:

    It is a shame that the court of public opinion in this country deems your term in office with such disrespect, Mr. President. I am not a historian, but I cannot think of a person in that office who held such deep commitments to human rights and strong values for goodness and equality. You walk the walk when others talk. Starting with the example you set with your hands and sweat for Habitat for Humanity. It is refreshing to hear that your devotion to faith is equalled to your devotion to yourself to always be open to examination of “what is” and consider “what could be” the correct path for your life journey. God bless you and your decision after so many years.

  • Canadian said:

    “But my fellow Elders and I, who come from many faiths and backgrounds, no longer need to worry about winning votes or avoiding controversy..”
    So he is speaking out now, but he was willing to go along with it before just to get ahead, even knowing it was wrong? For shame.

  • Joan Dengerink said:

    Thank you President Carter for standing up in this way.

  • Bill Woolgar said:

    It’s not just the Baptists who keep women in the “lower” class. The Catholic Church seems less than able or willing to allow women as deacons, priests, or to have any other role other than readers, altar servers and/or choristors. When I see the first woman priest, I will believe that equality as preached in various ways, has been started. We need to allow women and men to serve in the Church as married couples and priests. Shame on the Church for these millennia of hypocrisy towards women and their rights.

  • Michael said:

    Thank you, President Carter for your support of human dignity.

  • Nancy F.Neighbors said:

    Thank you, Mr. President, for writing these thoughts! You give me confidence to keep pressing for equality as a concerned layperson in my own church. Have I ever told you I love you?

  • Debbie Acito said:

    Thank you, President Carter, for your humane comments! How can I/we “get behind” this movement in any meaningful way?

  • Sid Dailey said:

    I always considered President Carter an honest and principaled man. He has proven it once again. I wish he could have been a more effective leader. I think the cards were stacked against him since Nixon took our money off of the gold standard in order to pay the debt with inflated dollars that caused a recession in the late seventies.

  • Betty said:

    Thank you, President Carter

  • Susan Filer said:

    I have always loved Jimmy Carter, and now even more. He is one of the best human beings on the planet. He is what a true Christian should be.

  • Phyllis Sandals said:

    God bless you, President Carter, for this and all your global leadership . “Well done thou good and faithful servant.” You are indeed “fighting the good fight” and may God continue to bless you with courage to stand firm in your convictions and the energy required todo so.

  • Phyllis Sandals said:

    God bless you, President Carter, for this and all your global leadership . “Well done thou good and faithful servant.” You are indeed “fighting the good fight” and may God continue to bless you with courage to stand firm in your convictions and the energy required to do so.

  • Spenced said:

    You are welcome in the United Methodist Church, President Carter.

  • Dorothy said:

    Thank you President Carter for finally putting into words something that always seemed to obvious to me as a woman and a Christian, that women were never intended to be less than men, that they are in the eyes of God equal.

  • Joy Ohler said:

    This problem of discrimination does not exist in Christian Science. No one in this Science of Christianity would allow this to take place, because “As adherents of Truth, we take the inspired word of the Bible as our sufficient guide to eternal Life.” Mary Baker Eddy. There is nothing inspired about discrimination. An open invitation to Jimmy Carter from a Christian Scientist: “Please consider membership in ‘The First Church of Christ, Science’. Because you are already in the Pracitce.” Joy Ohler.

  • Lou-Ann Lauborough said:

    Thank you, Mr. President, for your commitment to human rights. You are one of only a few presidents in my lifetime that I truly respect for your integrity.

  • Lee said:

    I applaud former President Carter for his courage to sever ties with the SBC and to stand up for what is truly right. To Sophe Stine, and many others, there actually are a lot of men who concur with him – and women – but those that do don’t normally have the platform Pres. Carter does, or the media gives much too much attention to narrow minded views of some, if not most, unfortunately.

  • RetSquid said:

    So, after 60 years, he decides the Bible is wrong and that the Church of Liberalism is correct and abandons his faith. I had little respect for this weakest of Presidents before, now I have even less.

  • shadowwonder said:

    Thank you, President Carter.

  • Pamela Chasteen said:

    I have always thought Jimmy Carter to be under-rated as a President. He was never given a true chance. He has always been a great humanitarian. He will be remembered fondly.

  • Debi said:

    Thank you.

  • Randall said:

    It must be taken further. The Bible explicity prescribes some ruthless stuff including the subjugation of women. The amount of mental gymnastics required to reconcile the Bible with reality is astonishing. All the Abrahamic faiths for that matter, because they came from the traditions of the same bands of desert nomads. The interpretations of the Bible aren’t twisted, the scriptures are twisted. All you have to do is read them. Props to Jim for taking the first step!

  • Laura Borhauer said:

    Thank you President Carter. I appreciate your courage and conviction to the women of the world. You are a true Christian in faith and deed.

  • Richard said:

    OK, stupid question…..would somebody please point out to me where in the United States ANY of what Carter is talking about in this letter actually takes place? Yes, the Bible does mention that wives should submit to their husbands, but the people who LOVE to beat Judeo-Christians over the head with that passage conveniently forget to read the passage that follows it: “Husbands, love your wives, and harbor no ill will towards them.” Sure changes the whole meaning of the preceding passage, doesn’t it? If you harbor no ill will towards your wife, then you won’t be enslaving her, now, will you? If he wants to turn his back on God and His teachings, that’s his call, but his conversation with St Peter when his time for judgment comes will be pretty entertaining, to say the least.

    As for Carter being the wisest man ever to become President, well, you’ll get a fight on that one. Maybe on some level he was, but he wasn’t very smart. It took Ronald Reagan less than two years to undo the mess Carter left him in 1981, not to mention the fact that Reagan was taken far more seriously by other world leaders than Carter could ever hope to be.

  • D. O'M Humphrey said:

    President Carter, With your one term as President you have managed to have a huge humanitarian impact on our country, and on an on-going basis. I can’t think of another President who has used his position of leadership to such good purpose. I hope President Obama will follow in your footsteps. You are a true people’s leader.

  • Pat said:

    Thank you, Mr. President. You are truly a holy man.

  • S Latuor said:

    President Carter has always lived by his ideals even when his stance is counter to current thought. Many have disparaged him, but no one can claim that he is hypocritical. He is to be admired for standing up for his beliefs. As a devout man, he must have had much difficulty breaking with his church. Such an articulate article! I thank him for making this statement about women’s rights. If only more courageous leaders would take similar stands instead of pandering to focus groups and wealthy backers.

  • Steven Ward said:

    I am a father with three daughters, and as such I applaud your defense of women’s equality. I just wish you could have done it without misrepresenting the views of those you disagree with in so many instances. I agree with your goal, but if you have to exaggerate and misrepresent to reach it you have lost more than you’ve gained.

  • Candace Taylor said:

    Right on! I’ve been saying this since 1970. Time for a paradigm shift!!!

  • Sue Shipman said:

    Well said, with grace and dignity.

  • Sherry Cowden said:

    Well said, Mr. President! I have always admired your intelligence, genuineness and moral compass. “Religion” is a MAN-made structure which often veers far from whatever or whoever inspired it. I have long wondered why the need to control through fear, subjugation and exclusion often trumps the call to inspire through love, joy and inclusion. Perhaps an attachment to Power.

  • Bonnie Arends said:

    I’m sure the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America would welcome Jimmy Carter into their fellowship.

  • Alice said:

    I always knew Jimmy Carter was a decent, moral man.

  • Donald Woolgar said:

    Well said President Carter. I have always had a good feeling for the work you’ve been doing, but now you’ve really struck gold.

    Further to what you’ve stated, just look at the “humane” and “religious” Cardinals of the Vatican. How many of them make their own beds, wash their own clothes, cook their own meals. None as far as I can gather. They all have hordes of Nuns to look after their needs.

    Yes, the world needs a true revolution as to the way we’ve been treating our women. Permanent change is needed from both sexes in order to install a lasting equilibrium.

  • Judith carpenter said:

    From a Canadian, this is the ultimate gentleman and Christian

  • Megan Everett said:

    Bless you, President Carter!

    I have always had the greatest respect and admiration for your work in the world, and for the way you live and embody your principles.

    You are a shining light! Thank you for sharing your reasons, and for acting on them. May they be felt by people everywhere, regardless of their religion.

    Best wishes in all things,

    Megan Everett

  • Sally Mullikin said:

    My Hero!

  • Rebecca Renbourne said:

    On behalf of all my sisters all over the world, I bow to you in thanks for your clarity and eloquence in stating our true issue and for taking the bold step to quit your church in response to their policy of oppression. You are a true hero in the world today! Big love to you, Mr Carter!

  • susan goldman said:

    eloquent, heartfelt and in the best of spirit. Thank you for you actions for peace and justice for all

  • mike manowski said:

    I appreciate your courage and respect your witnessing in many ways to a truly Christian belief of service to others. Thank you

  • Jim Atwell said:

    As a Quaker Christian, let me say God bless you for all you are to as a model and for this most recent stand. What you’ve done, brother Jimmy, is strip away w=twenty-one hundred years of self-contrading theology and stand by the message of our Lord Jesus as He spoke it.
    I pray God that steadily more believers will make this same move and come to understand that Jesus’ message (and hence the Father’s will) is basically about how we are to live, nota what we must believe. And rock-bottom in that message is the command (not re commendation) that we love one another, without exception, as Infinite Love loves us.
    As Quakers say, my friend, I will hold thee in the Light. Not in the sense of raising you up, but of holding you and your loved ones tight and standing in the Light with thee!
    Your brother Jim

  • Roderick said:

    Well said indeed. Mary Baker Eddy has reminded us in her writings that equality and good are “for all-mankind”. No gender involved. It’s part of universal healing and higher purpose.

  • Jim Atwell said:

    As a Quaker Christian, let me say God bless you for all you are to as a model and for this most recent stand. What you’ve done, brother Jimmy, is strip away twenty-one hundred years of self-contradicting theology and stand by the message of our Lord Jesus as He spoke it.
    I pray God that steadily more believers will make this same move and come to understand that Jesus’ message (and hence the Father’s will) is basically about how we are to live, not what we must believe. And rock-bottom in that message is the command (not a rcommendation) that we love one another, without exception, as Infinite Love loves us.
    As Quakers say, my friend, I will hold thee in the Light. Not in the sense of raising you up, but of holding you and your loved ones tight and standing in the Light with thee!
    Your brother Jim

  • Paula Searle said:

    Thank you Mr. President, for the courage of your convictions, and the eloquence of your expression!

  • Gputt said:

    I think the whole history or religion has been for the personal power of the clergy. If you can’t lead by being a king or emperor, you do it in the church where you can bend people’s behavior to avoid damnation. And what better way for the Catholic clergy to know what everyone is up to than by requiring confession. Look how many televangelists have fallen from their lofty, powerful perches when their greed became excessive.

  • Noel M said:

    A very thoughtful piece by a very thoughtful man. This must hvae been very hard for President Carter to write, knowing how deeply spiritual he is. But good for him for recognizing a line over which he can’t cross.

  • Mary Tagliarino said:

    Wonderful, analytic and clear thinking man! So nice to hear this from someone I’ve always admired so much! Let’s keep this message going!

  • Brenda said:

    Thank you, Mr. President. You have my utmost respect and my profound thanks.

  • Michael K said:

    I have always respected you as President. Your human rights policy to me reflected your deeply held religious beliefs. Rather than watch the inauguration of a new president, I went to Andrews AFB to wave good bye to you, your family and your administration left Washington, DC on your trip.

    This act just proves to me that you are the most moral president we have ever had.

  • Carol Woolbright said:

    Thank you President Carter for your lifelong respect for equality as demonstrated in your political life as well as in your personal life.

  • Paula said:

    Thank you, Mr Carter. Maybe some of the “leaders” of the church will take heed to this situation. When Jesus died on the cross He died for ALL, not just the men, which leads me to the belief
    all humans are equal in His eyes.

  • Gracie said:

    I am not an American Mr. Carter but you are a well-respected man here too. So many leaders could learn from your eloquent, well-spoken, and true article. What I have trouble with is the fact that men treat women so. If not for us giving birth they would not even exist. It’s about time someone like yourself and all the members of the “Elders” spoke up for women and surely the decision you made in no longer being a “Baptist” was a difficult one. I respect you very deeply and even more than before because of your honest and truthful words. Thank you again President Carter.

  • Lea Gerhardt said:

    I am touched by your sensitivity and commitment. Perhaps not too late for our daughters and granddaughters. Wouldn’t that be awesome! You got me tearing up in hope.

  • Dorothy Verry said:

    I’m so very proud of Jimmy Carter and happy to hear of the “Elders!” With gracious, but strong leaders as he is joining forces, women will be equal in the upcoming generations!! Bravo!

  • Dorothy Aiello said:

    God Bless you Predisent Jimmy Carter. You were the one and only president I voted for feeling like I made the right choice. You are a man of truth and principle and have never strayed from them. Thank you for being a voice for those who are not allowed one. We are listening.

  • Julie B said:

    Thank you President Carter. Your courage to stand up for women is much appreciated. I have always much admired you.

  • JO said:

    This letter confirms what I have felt all along about Jimmy Carter
    and especially why he was not reelected. Unlike some of the other presidents in the USA, he had all the qualities that make a great leader… honesty, intergrity, compassion, intelligence, wisdom, not power hungry… If we had more leaders like this in the world, it would be a much safer, kinder, more just world to live in.

  • Courtney said:

    A surprising example of a Christian church that agrees with Mr. Carter about interpreting scripture: http://mormonscholarstestify.org/1718/valerie-hudson-cassler

  • mike jarboe said:

    Jimmy Carter is one of the most underrated humans of the 20th century.

  • Kat Huff said:

    I remember a day, on the school bus ride home, the kids were talking about Jimmy Carter, because we had an elementary school voting day. And for some reason, it was only the girls who went on and on about Jimmy Carter for President. As I read this, that memory flooded back to me, and how the girls were so excited. Isn’t it an odd thing how that many years can go by, before a picture becomes complete? I have researched these things, these truths, that is mentioned here, but I rarely hear a man, much less a (former) President, speak with boldness, a truth that flies in face of the religions and cultures throughout the world. I was told just two days ago, that I am lesser, I have no authority because I am female, and that males are the master, the head. I’m single and plan to stay that way.

  • ed lane said:

    I agree completely with the former president, and I applaud his human rights stand over the last several years. My problem comes from the fact tht he did very little about these problems when he had the raw power to do so. And as I understand it, the Catholic church, as the biggest and one of the most powerful religions in the world does not view women as equals. The world leaders need to get off of their thrones and down here with the rest of us and do something about equality for all. They are the ones who have perpetuated this inequality for centuries. Many people in this world have feared coming out of the closet, you on the other hand have had nothing to fear or lose, yet you do so now.

  • Marie said:

    Interesting that he does not name the ‘Elders’. I would like to know how many of them are men and if any of them at all are women.

  • Mary H. Frede said:

    Thank you President Carter!

  • Caroline Lane said:

    Wisdom, compassion, integrity. We’re so lucky that such a man is still with us and still speaking out.

  • JoniB said:

    If I had heard words as beautiful as this, I might still be a christian. As it is, I have left the church, its dogma, and god behind forever.

    Thank you President Carter for your insight and compassion.

    Nameste.

  • A. said:

    Beautifully written, may G’d bless him.

  • Marie said:

    So, for curiosity’s sake, I looked it up. There are 7 men and four women on the board. They are doing good things for the world. :)

  • Marc said:

    You tell ‘em Jimmy!

  • Ann Carr said:

    I, too, was reared as a So. Baptist, living and growing up in Ridgecrest, NC – with a minister father. I’m quite sure he would not be a Baptist today, as I am not. I’m happily worshiping in a Presbyterian (USA) church, open and affirming toward all of God’s children.

    I try to live daily with this thought: “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.” MLK. Jr.

  • Al Porter said:

    Thank you President Carter, for once again reminding us of the atrocities that are committed every day against women in third world and theocracies like those in the middle east. We can only hope that the next generation will shed these ignorant and abusive beliefs through improved education and better living standards.

    If you turn your view to the USA, you will see a stark contrast. While there was much exhilaration over the renewal of VAWA, there was one group that was left out in the cold. The rights of men and boys who are domestic abuse victims were once again bypassed. Despite the sobering statistics presented by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), which showed domestic violence offenders running about equal between men and women, no provisions exist for males under VAWA (excepting the new provisions for LGBT). In fact, VAWA engenders discrimination against male victims by name and by it’s provisions by promoting the fallacy that woman=victim and man=aggressor.

    If you find this shocking or surprising, I encourage you to research further. Our laws need to support all victims of domestic violence, or we are on a slippery slope to a reverse of the horrors that our former president has so diligently worked to expose. In fact, those who oppose us can point to laws like VAWA to show the lack of fairness in the USA, damaging the high road we try so hard to take.

  • Karen Bigelow said:

    Well said Mr President. I admire the work your group is doing.

  • Paul Skizinski said:

    I have always said that President Carter is the finest human being to have ever held the office of President of the United States. This dissertation of his certainly confirms my opinion of him. I had the pleasure of meeting him once at a book signing. Would that our country will be blessed someday with another president of his stature and integrity. God bless you, Mr. President!

  • James Montgomery Jacskon said:

    None of us can be free until all of us are free.

  • Diana Hall said:

    I was taught by my conservative Catholic parents that mixed views on politics and religion as a combined subject, don’t mix well for peaceful dinner table conversation, at the dinner table or otherwise. It makes people want to get up and leave the table, as its difficult to digest. As I am from a family of eight, you can imagine that there were plenty of mixed views on these subjects,especially combined. I applaud President Carter’s choice in leaving the table.

  • Thandie F. Beames said:

    Thank you Jimmy Carter, well articulated and most appreciated! we need to awaken to the fact that, women are the critical mass and we cannot afford to waste their energy and potential.

  • Gill said:

    IMHO Jimmy Carter was the last President to represent the American People. Before you get mad with me about that comment, I also think his predecessor Jerry Ford was a representative of the People. Do lets not debate the pardon here and now ok?

    Now-a-days long time friends and family are coerced to divide from each others diversity, over arms, abortions, gay rights, women’s rights, spiritual rights, race, country of origin, education etcetera etcetera…
    It didn’t used to be that way, there were a few decades, a few decades ago, when we strived to embrace all walks of life with open arms. That was the era when Jimmy Carter was elected President.
    Blessings be upon you Sir, and may the Peace of the Lord always be with you.

    The coercion I mentioned above is all about fear. We have all been made afraid, but again IMHO afraid of the wrong things. We are afraid of Jews, Sunnis, Shias, Atheists, Christians, Hindus, Arabs, Feminists, LGBT, The Irish, (sorry wrong century, blessings be upon you Ireland!). We all get the emails that incite our inbred hatreds, that divide and conquer us. Who really writes those emails? Who funds those derisive “I hate so and so” FB groups? (and if you don’t agree with me I hate you too!). And most importantly why are they trying so hard to break us apart from each other?

    Hint: An old hippie friend of mine went out on a walkabout for 40 days once, dude had some stories to tell when he got back.

    I really do miss that time of a few decades, a few decades ago.
    My prayer of Transformation this weekend is that someday, we will ALL be sitting around a fire with little ones on our knees, discussing ideals like, Former President Jimmy Carter brings up in his article.
    And how we have become a Super Power, one that embraces diversity, and empowers ALL PEOPLES to be who they are and who do what they do, in support for each other.
    Including and most especially our Mother, EARTH!

    That same old hippie friend of mine once said: “Give em break Dad, they don’t know what they’re doing”
    But we do know what we’re doing, don’t we? I know I have room for improvement, (Ok a lot of improvement). How are you feeling?

    As we celebrate my old hippie friends Transformation this weekend, lets try and read those emails and the I hate the so and so FB posts for what they worth. If they incite us to divide, instead of come together, I ask you to unsubscribe, or just delete them to the dustbin of hate and evil they belong in.

    Praying for Peace, each and every one of YOU, the memory of a few decades, a few decades ago, former President Jimmy Carter for his inspiring ways, my old hippie friend, and gratitude of the fact that…
    I’m going to go cook a pizza and have a beer now.

  • Canadian Ambassador said:

    Well said President Carter. I hope you continue this logical progression and eventually recognize religion, the bible and god as man made fictions with no authority over human affairs. It is time the world grew up and decided that we as individuals who are members of humankind (not we as christians, jews, muslims etc)are responsible for supporting the rights of others. Morality and human decency predate the bible and you have shown how decent you are time and again.

  • Walker Labyrinth said:

    Thank you, President Carter, for the courage to take a stand against inequality, especially in the name of religion. You are speaking a word of hope, compassion, and justice for all. Holding you and your family in prayer.

  • Rabia said:

    Thank you so much ! especially on the eve of easter! ahhhhhhhhhhhh

  • Don Curtis said:

    Great letter. Religion is deadly to women and men. Thanks for the truth that is Christ Himself. Thanks Mr. President for your ongoing service to our nation and world.

  • Daphne Clarke-Hudson said:

    Thank you President Carter for your strong advocacy for Women.It is my prayer that God extents your life to witness the manifestation for what you and the elders Globally seek for us Women.

    Women and girls across the Globe all celebrate you Sir for taking such BOLD stand on our behalf.There are several organization who continues to seek justice for us,and we will continue the work;until we get results.

    I am sharing this article and ask others to do the same .

    The World is PROUD of you President Jimmy Carter; I pray that other Leaders will model you and take a stand to make a positive difference.
    Thank you,thank you thank you.

  • E S Holmans said:

    With arms wide.
    Welcome to the Religious Society of Friends.

  • Phoebe Reeve said:

    Thank you President Carter for being a profound and truly Christian influence on the USA for all these decades. You continue to inspire!

  • Carroll said:

    I’ve alwas known that Pres. Carter was smart. He’s proved it again.

  • Eileen said:

    This is one registered republican who has never regretted her vote for Jimmy Carter! He is a truly kind man; we are lucky to have his voice in our country. Thank you, President Carter!

  • Brad Johnson said:

    We recognized his character when we voted for him the first time; endorsed his wisdom four years later when all Iranian hostages were released alive. The only way the Ayatollah could humiliate him was by waiting until inauguration day. The Faith and Character of Jimmie Carter prevailed then and continues to illuminate hope for the world.

  • Ray said:

    With all due respect to the former president; what a hypocrite! Does he actually expect anyone to believe that he’s sat in the congregation of a Southern Baptist church for 60 years and never heard these views until now? What, is he some kind of modern Rip VanWinkle? This is as believable as President Obama’s assertion that he sat in the pews of Liberation Theologian, Jeremiah Wright for 20 years and never heard him utter any of the incendiary rhetoric for which he is now infamous. This is as credible as the group epiphany experienced by Obama, Biden, and the Clintons regarding same-sex marriage, in which case, up until a few months ago, they were all against it, before they were for it. What short memories we all seem to have.

    When he declares, “The justification of discrimination against women and girls on grounds of religion or tradition, as if it were prescribed by a Higher Authority, is unacceptable”, what does he mean? This sounds like more empty rhetoric to me.

    He attempts to clarify by adding:

    “We are calling on all leaders to challenge and change the harmful teachings and practices, no matter how ingrained, which justify discrimination against women. We ask, in particular, that leaders of all religions have the courage to acknowledge and emphasise the positive messages of dignity and equality that all the world’s major faiths share.”

    This sounds like more empty words, with no specificity.

    I’m so sick of politicians churning out rhetorical flourishes that mean little or nothing.

    “I’m against murder!”

    “I believe child prostitution is abhorrent!”

    “Racism should be abolished!”

    Does he think he’s being courageous by penning this article? Does the former president fear retribution from someone… anyone?

    Hey Jimmy, how about directly challenging your church hierarchy and the teachings they claim as the biblical final word. What are you afraid of?

    He wasn’t afraid to speak out, lauding Hugo Chavez who repeatedly attacked the United States’ reputation, while ignoring the on-going suppression of the anti-Chavez press.

    This is the same human-rights champion who eulogized, “President Chavez will be remembered for his bold assertion of autonomy and independence for Latin American governments and for his formidable communication skills and personal connection with supporters in his country and abroad to whom he gave hope and empowerment.”

    Apparently he’s just fine with the Venezuelan military’s domination of the judiciary. By his endorsement he implies approval of silencing by the courts of Chavez’s political opponents and student groups.

    Perhaps he would plead ignorance of the 2009 Amnesty International report that describes a Venezuelan law on national intelligence and security passed by presidential decree in May of that year and withdrawn the following month after “protests against several aspects of the law, including a provision that would have obliged people to inform on each other or face prosecution.”

    “There were reports of physical attacks on journalists, by both security forces and by civilians. Public insecurity remained an issue, with high numbers of small arms in circulation, including within the prison system.”

    The report details how in spite of the 2007 Law for the Right of Women to Live a Life Free from Violence, it “failed to fulfill their obligations. At the end of the year there were still no shelters in most of the country and insufficient training had been put in place to enable police officers to implement the law effectively. In addition, perpetrators in cases preceding the 2007 law continued to enjoy impunity for their crimes.”

    The report details how “Alexandra Hidalgo was kidnapped and subjected to a seven-hour ordeal during which she was raped and tortured by a group of men in May 2004. Only two of her attackers had been brought to trial by the end of 2008. She was not provided with adequate protection despite receiving anonymous threats and the fear of reprisals from her former husband, whom she accused of being among her attackers. Although an arrest warrant had been issued for her husband, he remained at liberty at the end of the year.”

    The report went on to explain how “Government officials attempted to undermine legitimate human rights work by making unfounded accusations against human rights organizations.”

    The would-be women’s rights champion somehow overlooks the Venezuelan Attorney General’s announcement that “it would create a designated investigation team in 2009 to look into more than 6,000 reported cases of extrajudicial executions in which people were killed in confrontations with police between 2000 and 2007.”

    Perhaps he did just awaken from a 20 year nap!

  • A World Class Global Leader–Losing my religion for equality…by Jimmy Carter | Elect2Care said:

    [...] Losing my religion for equality…by Jimmy Carter. [...]

  • Renee said:

    Thanks for reminding us of this gem, here’s the original piece from 2009: http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/losing-my-religion-for-equality-20090714-dk0v.html

  • Cynthia said:

    Bravo! So right and true! Now, what about gender-selection motivated abortions? Canada and many other countries (USA too?) allow for for this. This past week a private members bill addressing this was not allowed in Canada. Is this not a major attack on girls and women in our sophisticated society?

  • Jennifer said:

    Thank you, President Carter, hope you are listened to this time. Wish we would have listened to you when you tried to get solar power, wind power, etc. to decrease our dependence on foreign oil.

  • Heidi Nichols said:

    Thank you so much, Mr. President, for a message so well-said! How wonderful it would be if you could serve again and lead our errant country back to God.
    Many blessings to you, kind sir!

  • Ooomah said:

    I have always believed President Carter was ahead of His time, now I know it.

  • Nicole Boulanger said:

    Thank you for trying to open obtuse minds. Religion is an excuse and it has worked in number of people touched and time. With more scientific explanations now, we could know better but some people hang on what they already have and the power it gives them.
    I always wonder how the world would be if a group of women instead of men were heading it. Remember… women are mothers too… making it more difficult to kill so easily. They seam to know something that men don’t.

  • Ellen said:

    Dear President Carter,

    I’m in tears. This was so beautifully expressed — thank you. I’ve always been fond of you but this particular expression is an exceptional gift. God bless you.

    Ellen

  • Ann Burks said:

    Thanks to President Carter for a carefully reasoned commentary. Having been raised Southern Baptist, I very much appreciate your comments, which I join.

  • Debbie Adams Bates said:

    This is a Truth that can no longer be denied. In order for all to spiritually evolve, the feminine energy MUST be recognized and loved. We are ALL ONE. To continue to ignore this fact is an act of hatred against humanity. How can we as a group consciousness become divine if hatred is so blatantly practiced? Much love to Jimmy Carter … his words are amazingly beautiful and so very appropriate at this time!

  • Ann Burks said:

    Thanks for a well-reasoned comment. Having been reared as a Southern Baptist, I especially appreciate your views, which I join.

  • richard watherwax said:

    Jimmy has always been my hero.
    And as far as Southern Baptsts go…

    Do you know why they don’t want any of their members to have sex standing up?

    It might lead to dancing…

    r.watherwax

  • Sue Dyment said:

    Thank you, Mr. Carter. Well stated and elequent. My cottage neighbours are from the USA, and still say you were the best
    President the country has known. Keep up the good work.

  • Joan said:

    Certainly one of the best ex-presidents we’ve ev had.

  • james griffin said:

    I have also always thought that President Carter will be remembered as being the most Wonderful, thoughtful man that I ever met. I know how hard it must have been to leave the SBC. I am wondering now ….what religion he will be claiming now? I left the church years ago and only my solice and thoughts are my religion. Too many are just political organizations disguised as religion. THANK YOU President Carter and Roselyn for your YEARS OF SERVICE.

  • carol voigts said:

    The Elders speak wisely and I’m anxious to hear more from you, Nelson Mandela and other great statesmen. You are standing on hallowed ground –standing up for those who need a voice spoke out for them. Courage in the face of being reviled, you have always been brave and upright. Thank you, Mr. President, ,my hero!

  • Emma Erickson said:

    Jimmy Cater is the defintion of a hero–a man who, despite much risk to himself and his “repuatation”, is still fighting to jettison something for the greater good. He is the ideal “Enlightenement Hero”, giving up a great title, and challenging the Authority. We need more people like him in this world.

  • Linda said:

    Thank you for your leadership and courage President Carter.

  • Teresa said:

    I salute you Jimmy!

  • Cindy Worthley said:

    AMEN!

  • Art said:

    I am glad you did not leave your faith (just your denomination) but rather chose to let your faith motivate you to work for change.

  • Celia said:

    There is an old saying that used to be mocked by the pastor of our church when I was growing up. “We’ve been taught it all the time, it must be right”. I am afraid this has been the theme of many churches for many years. Truly, if we looked at the Bible honestly, we can see where man has politically manipulated the Word of God to serve his purpose rather than serve God. Thank you President Carter for standing up for the truth and hopefully encouraging all of us to do the same. And to search the scriptures honestly and pray to see the truth set forth for us to follow.

  • Janice Roseland said:

    As always, a man of integrity. How difficult this must have been after a lifetime of hoping for reason and moral growth in church leadership and finding both utterly absent.

  • Tammy Draheim said:

    What an amazing example from a truly Great Man!!

  • Gwen McFarlane said:

    Well said Mr Carter. I too have just left a denomination that oppresses a minority. In my case the LGBT community. At the end of your article you state “This is in clear violation not just of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights but also the teachings of Jesus Christ, the Apostle Paul, Moses and the prophets, Muhammad, and founders of other great religions – all of whom have called for proper and equitable treatment of all the children of God. It is time we had the courage to challenge these views.” Please support the equitable treatment of all the children of God and include the LGBT community as well.

  • Surendrapratap Singh said:

    Thank you, Mr. President,for a brave and timely move to leave The Southern Baptist Convention. Humanity is one, and equality must be equal among all.

  • Andrea Daniel said:

    Amen to that President Carter. There are many religious that will surely welcome you.

  • Mei said:

    hey, does this exist in other languages?

  • Toni said:

    Thank you President Carter for voicing your thoughts for women. This means a lot to me.

  • Julian Tepper said:

    Does Jimmy believe that the Bible (the Old Testament, in this case) presents the words of G-D?

  • Royanne said:

    I voted for Jimmy Carter when I was 18 and have often wished since that all of our leaders could be as decent and fair. Thank you, President Carter.

  • Martha Sherman said:

    Dear President Carter,

    I first met you in Atlanta, Georgia back in the mid-1960s. I was teaching at Georgia Baptist Hospital School of Nursing and you came and spoke to our student nurses. I was surprised how pleasant and soft spoken you were, but was impressed how articulate and caring you were toward our students.

    Today, I am so impressed and touched by your words for equal rights for women. It has been an important part of my life and I thank you for what you are doing and how much you have given up in your life to help this cause!

    Thank you,
    Martha Sherman

  • PA11261 said:

    President Carter…. I have always been proud of casting my vote for you. I have never backed down from proclaiming you to be the best President of my lifetime. Thank you for standing up to the religious persecution of women worldwide. I thank you for my great nieces, and their children to follow

  • Siobhra DeWar said:

    I did not think much of him when he was in office. However he hit is high point (to me) when he handled the Three Mile Island affair.

    But over the years I have grown to admire him more and more. This is another example of a true leader.

  • Susan Siemens said:

    I have always liked Jimmy Carter, as a Canadian, he was my favourite President. What an upstanding man and great Christian example. I will enjoy sharing eternity with him.

  • Karen Marie said:

    Powerful and eloquent. I always thought we should have re-elected him.

  • mellanie brennan said:

    One more reason to be proud of President Carter.

  • Bo Campbell said:

    President Carter was a good president and he very well be the last truly good one America has had, If you don’t believe me just look at what he attempted to do in terms of energy policy for all of us. Had we listened to president Carter and begun the national move to conserve and limit our use of fossil fuels back in the 70′s and early 80′s the world would be a different place, both politically and environmentally. But the Big Oil corporations got their man in Ronald Reagan and look at what has happened to this country since, and all because of Middle East policies enacted in support of oil corporations. We took a turn for the stupid when we elected the actor, and history will vindicate President Carter.

  • Tempe said:

    Thank you President Carter. I am so proud of you as an American and a leader. This is an example of true leadership. We need more of this type of guidance in the USA.

  • Rich said:

    There is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

  • DJ Starr said:

    I think that President Carter always had too much integrity to be in politics, but I am glad (and still surprised!) that he was. To me, Spirituality is much different than Religion – a manmade institution if there ever was one! He is an admirable and honorable man and I’m glad he’s taken this bold stand against the “church”. I’m sure their stance on one sex couples would be similar.

  • Renee said:

    I voted for this man in the first presidential election I could vote in. I still would vote for him. He’s remarkable, intelligent and wonderfully caring and kind to all humans. He’s a true Hero.

  • Dwayne Britnell said:

    Jimmy Carter is a Statesman who has turned the pyramid of religion right-side up to put it on a firm foundation. More people should do what is right, to include the Pope…

  • Nancy Parada said:

    He did not say he is losing his religion. There is a difference from leaving a denomination than losing your faith. Your
    headline is misleading.

  • Joe Landrum said:

    With all due respect, I offer a couple of clarifications. The pay gap in the U.S. is now essentially gone. A recent study showing it existed compared men and women doing completely different jobs. Also, he complains that there are not many women in public office. Half of eligible voters are women. There are plenty of women running for office, winning, and losing based on their merits and/or their ability to connect with voters. It is simply silly, in 2013, to complain about such things in the U.S.

  • Barrie Hafler said:

    A voice of strength and reason on a topic, that for too long, has been kept submerged by a “twist of faith”.

  • Peter Singer said:

    Finally, someone ‘on the inside’ is taking a stand, declaring that perceived beliefs and tangible policies are dissonant with our inherent rights to be equal and free.
    The observations made, demand further action.
    President Carter states
    “We are calling on all leaders to challenge and change the harmful teachings and practices, no matter how ingrained, which justify discrimination against women.”

    We as individuals, can choose or not, to be leaders.

    I choose the road for equality for all.

    Peter Singer
    BOND NATIONAL
    Negotiating for best outcomes

  • marilyn salsbury said:

    Thanks President Carter for your courage in leaving the So. Baptist Church. Love you!!

  • Vicki Sussman said:

    Isn’t it wonderful to hear such brilliance. This is the most wonderful look at the future. I am so proud to know that this man has only grown in the time since he was President. And, every time I hear him speak, or read his words, I feel closer to my faith. Thank you so much, Jimmy Carter for your words and the example you set for all of us.

  • Michele Penirian Winterbottom said:

    Jimmy Carter was always for the poor, and supported women. and was in front to provide green energy, WHICH REAGAN took OFF the White House.. I have and will always support Jimmy Carter.. He was one the best Presidents we had.. and supported AMERICA, not corporations.. This Statement or Thesis.. says it all.. Way to go President Carter.. I just wish all the present day Government officials would follow YOUR LEAD.. thank you President Carter for All you did for us.. and continue to do.. I can’t thank you enough.. Michele

  • Stan Wyatt said:

    Paul said to help those women who labour with me in the Gospel.

  • Jean-Pierre Caron said:

    ( Excuse my poor english) .
    Thanks for telling your position , mr Carter. I agree on your 99% of your statement .
    Let’s talk about your 1% :
    You said :
    “This is in clear violation not just of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights but also the teachings of Jesus Christ, the Apostle Paul, Moses and the prophets, Muhammad, and founders of other great religions – all of whom have called for proper and equitable treatment of all the children of God” .
    With all the respect I owe you, let me comment the following.
    Please do not put at the same rank Mohammed Jesus and Paul …( “founders of other great religions”(?)…hum…). In deed, in the text of Koran you can justify a second level for woman. The Book of Islam do not put men and women at the same level. When you insinuate that, mr Carter, you are loosing credibility. You must be as objective with Muslims as you are with South Baptist…
    Think about the present women’ rapes in Egypt : the religious authority say few words against: they even accuse women of provocation ! Not only one Inman is standing for defending those women. Maybe it is because it do not exist a single verse in the Koran that intends to prohibit such behavior…(?)
    However, in the New Testament, there is at least one strong verse that supports your position about women :
    Galatians ; 3:28 ( it is a shame : you did not mention it).
    …try to find the same in Koran…and you will agree that it is impossible to associate Jesus and Mohammed in the same ” noble cause” of sexes’ equality. Soyez béni Monsieur Carter ! ( Be blessed!) From Québec city.

  • Helen Brown said:

    I voted for and supported Jimmy Carter when he ran for President and was sadly disappointed that he was not allowed a second term. I always felt that he was one of the best presidents that we have had. This reaffirms my feelings regarding this man. God Bless You President Carter and your lovely wife, also. I know what a painful decision this must have been for you…..but just remember, God HAS NO RELIGION! Religion was created by man, not God. That is why so many people are questioning the “established churches and religions” and their beliefs so much. Man has taken the words of God and twisted them to suit their greed and self-serving ways. No one has the right to put down a creature, be it human, flora, or fauna that was created by God.

  • Adrienne Parks said:

    Pres. Carter appointed the first openly gay Assistant to the President – Midge Costanza. She contributed greatly to the advancement of women in the workplace, gender equality, human rights, and world peace. One of her many outstanding quotes was: ” We cannot expect government to guarantee equal results- but…we can expect government to provide and guarantee equal opportunity.” Pres. Carter was a humanitarian way ahead of his time.

  • LeAnn Knifer Atkin said:

    President Carter,
    I can’t imagine the turbulence that took place in your heart! You have always been a very wise man. I have always respected you and I bow to you now for the terrible decision you have had to make. Thank you President Carter for standing firm in your beliefs!

  • Marilyn Scheffler said:

    I, too, am proud of Jimmy Carter for this well written and well thought out story of how his change of heart came about. It’s a shame that some of the men who are so “holier than thou” don’t stop and think things out in the same manner. Thank you President Carter.

  • Rhett said:

    As the mother of two girls. This, quite literally, means the world. Thank you Mr. President.

  • Diane Scheid said:

    Sir, I say you have not lost your religion, rather you have broken ties with an organization that does not seek to enlighten, but rather seeks to enslave.

    I’m proud to say I voted for you. I’d follow you anywhere!

    God loves you, and so do I.

  • Peg Lyons said:

    This is an eloquent and elegant argument for the recognition of women as equal partners in all facets of their lives. Thank you, President Carter, for sharing your beliefs and thank you for your courage as you leave the church you have given 60 years to illustrate their narrow focus of womens’ significance, based upon a skewed interpretation of Scripture.
    Thanks to Nelson Mandela,you, and other global leaders for recognizing that all women from all cultures have worth that should not only be acknowledged but harnessed and shared for the good of all.

  • Celia Stewart said:

    Well said President Carter.
    You are truly a Christian! Our newly appointed pope would be so very proud of you.
    God bless you always.

  • Holly Chartier said:

    It’s always nice to be vindicated in my beliefs! I have said for many years how much I admired Jimmy Carter as one of our nation’s best Presidents, and I’ve taken a lot of flack for it. He has been the only former President to work harder in his retirement than in office for people in need. And he worked damn hard in office for them! I too have said goodbye to my religion, for the same reasons he stated. It’s very hard to do. I worked for my church for many years in the area of music and liturgy, which are where the church truly shines, in my humble opinion. I miss it, especially this time of year.
    Thank you President Carter!

  • Randy Barnetson said:

    I admire Jimmy Carter immensely for his life of service and I agree with this article except for one issue. He believes that women have the right to abortion. I strongly believe that women DO have the right over their own bodies, but the body of the baby is NOT the woman’s body. The baby is a “dependant” human and it takes the most self-less act of love to protect and nurture that child in pregnancy. Much like the self-less acts of love done every day by parents for their children and society’s care for the elderly, sick and those with mental health issues, and by first responders who give their lives for others.

  • Dave said:

    I am not religious in the least but common sense is common sense
    and it’s good to see a high profile person with enough guts to express
    it publicly.

  • Donel Wagner said:

    Dear President Carter,
    I have a very different first name and while I am female, a number of times it is taken as a male name.I have spent the last 15 years in Idaho and yes, in this western state, the women are treated very poorly. One church does not allow them to participate in services at all. This is Church of Christ and I do not know if this is the same everywhere with them or just Salmon, Idaho. My friends all agree that the men just do what they want there and expect the women to be slaves. I had my personal and family items stored in the garage and found out recently that my husband had dropped me from the policy, hence, there was no coverage when they mysteriously disappeared. My ex-husband also dropped me from medical insurance before our divorce was final, hence, no qualifying event took place and therefore, no C.O.B.R.A. rights were forthcoming for continuation of healthcare. And when I wrote to Farm Bureau of Idaho, they took the word of their agent over mine. Of course, the men all stick together! I am sure this discrimination is practiced by more insurance companies than just Farm Bureau. Hope people understand discrimination is alive and well right here in the U.S.A.
    Please contact me if you would like to talk about the discrimination against me. I am in three protected categories: female, Over 65, Legally blind (disabled).
    Donel Wagner
    1028 Katherine Way
    Stockton, CA 95209

  • Sheila Tymon said:

    You’ve always been my favorite President. You speak your truth. Thank you.

  • Jonathan said:

    What you’ve done with this open letter, President Carter, is what thousands of other Real Men should have done for generations, and should continue to do, all over the world, until the forces of evil against women begin to lose their hold! Keep it up! Keep it up! I applaud you mightily! And I do that as a christian, too.

  • Denise said:

    Many attribute the Apostle Paul as forbidding woment to speak in the church. However the devil is still a liar. What he really said was: “It is writen or you may have heard that it is shameful for a woman to speak in the assembly but c’mon brothers let us reason together. There were 120 men along with the women in that upper room on the day of Pentecost and the very same Holy Ghost that fell on the men fell on the women likewise. Now if the holy spirit shows no destinction between male and female who are we to try and hush them up?” He went on further to say that in Christ Jesus there is no Jew or Greek, no bond or free and get this no male or female. Christ is a God of who so ever will for we were all bought with the same bride price which is His shed blood. Also Eve was indeed the weaker vessel but she was tricked into disobeying God. Adam knew full well that what he was doing was wrong and he did it anyhow. Since when is willful disobeidiance a virtue? Furthermore that “superior”male tried to blame Eve for his wrongdoing instead of owning up to what he had done of his own free will. Kudos to you Jimmy for standing for that which is right!

  • Sheena Hill said:

    Jimmy Carter continues to amaze me. He is still reviled by so many, as the worst President ever. He was elected because the populace was tired of the political machine, and the lack of morals in government. His hands were tied in this country, because he didn’t play politics, and was too straightforward and honest. The hostage taking in Iran was the proverbial nail in his coffin. People rarely seem to remember he did the impossible. He assisted with the peace between Egypt and Israel. This was a war of thousands of years, in essence. The peace it brought to that little corner of the world is immeasurable. He continues to give of himself with the Elders, Habitat for Humanity, and as an unofficial diplomat anywhere he is needed. His stance on women is no surprise to me, as he stands for everything that is right in Christianity.

  • CynthiaR said:

    This was originally published in 2009. The copyright of 2013 is misleading. It should state at the top or bottom of the piece the original release date.

  • Anne Hazzard said:

    As a Canadian neighbour, I have admired Mr. Carter for many years. I have listened to and watched his actions. I always said he was too good of a man to be president. He has done more good in his golden years than most of us could ever do in a lifetime. God bless you, Jimmy Carter.

  • Beryl Lyford said:

    Very eloquent Mr. President. Thank you for voicing this position that I hope all will hear! God Bless you.

  • Dorothy Pocaigue said:

    President Jimmy Carter’s influence has continued beyond his time in ofice. In fact it has gotten stronger on the issues that are important to the American people, and people all over the world. He is truly a man of principle, integrity and courage. Thank you, Mr President, for being a living example of what it is to be a Christian.

  • Susmita said:

    This is such a powerful testament for upholding women’s equal status in all areas of our society: in secular politics and religion. Wonder when and where this speech was first delivered by President Carter? I had posted this in my blog may be last year somewhere. http://womandivine.blogspot.com

  • Jon said:

    To concern oneself with the welfare of ALL – particularly those who do not match MY demographic is the hallmark of a truly egalitarian and compassionate leader and Christian. So – called “Christians” need to take a cue from President Carter and realize that being President is not just about creating an American atmosphere in which one can make the most money. A true leader is concerned for the well – being of all people equally – just as a true Christian is.

  • Carolyn said:

    How profoundly stated by a very compassionate and wise man. As someone who has served God and His people for so many years, I cannot imagine what a hard decision that was for you to make. And for those of you who criticize him for it taking so long, always remember those who live in glass houses, you know the rest. It is always better late than never. Also @Daniela, I am sorry but if you compare what women go through in this country of maybe being criticized and even being blamed for being raped that, to me, does not compare to the actual torture and physical abuse that is done to women in Islamic countries that report rape. What goes on here is reprehensible and cruel but what goes on there is criminal .

  • Gary Kopycinski said:

    Thank you Mr. President! Well said!

  • Lori Wilhide said:

    President Carter is an incredible humanitarian. I love listening to him talk as he speaks so we understand. I think at the time he was President, he was too forward thinking for his time. People didn’t understand why he did the things he did. Sometimes you need to make the sacrifice yourself to show others how to.

  • SKaye67 said:

    President Carter, you will be the wave that changes the tide. Thank you so much for your sweet spirit and beautiful example of showing Love to all. I know the heartache that comes with leaving a religion behind that has served you and your family for generations. But you are showing how faith and spirit expand far beyond the confines of human organization when we finally respond to that still small voice calling on us to speak up and make change. Thank you so much for your faith.

  • Sharon MacDonald said:

    Might the Elders formally make a submission to Roman Catholic Bishops and perhaps our new Pope Francis?

  • Snygorkha said:

    I do hope that Mr. Carter realizes that the Southern Baptist Church is NOT the only church of God and that SOME churches choose to follow “tradition” instead of the whole bible. The bible clearly indicates that there is no difference between men and women as far as equality goes. Though one may be stronger physically, both are valued, honored, and equal heirs in God’s kingdom.

    1 Peter 3:7
    And you men, in this way dwell with your wives by knowledge, and hold them in honor as weaker vessels, lest you be subverted in your prayers, because they also inherit the gift of eternal life with you.

    Galatians 3:28
    There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

    Genesis 2:24
    Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.

    Matthew 19:6
    So they are no longer two but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate.”

    And as Christians, male and female, symbolically forming the body of Christ together we are all told in Romans 12:3-6:
    For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you. 4For just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, 5so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.

    Philippians 2:3
    Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, (All Christians: male and female, husband and wife)

    Ephesians 5:21 Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ. (All Christians: male and female, husband and wife)

    Romans 12:10 Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. (All Christians: male and female, husband and wife)

    I hope that Mr. Carter did not through the baby out with the bath water just because the church he attended did not clearly see how much God commands us – male and female – to love and serve one another. One is not higher than the other but both are JOINT heirs in God’s eyes.

  • BDC said:

    Ok, I was waiting for him to break apart these ‘carefully selected scriptures’ and wow me with this intellect of his. I was TRULY ready to listen to his argument. All I heard was him equating someone who thinks this way to abusers of women. The Southern Baptist Convention have no doubt spoke against such abuse that he went on and on about. Abuse that is not prevalent in the states.

    Instead of explaining his case and showing me in scriptures the error of this kind of thinking, he simply demonized the position and moved on. Still waiting to be schooled, Mr. President. As far as I see, the SBC still respect women and do not agree with abusing anybody.

  • Lloyd Umbarger said:

    An eloquent statement by an eloquent gentleman of authentic faith! You, kind sir, and Pope Francis are shaking up the old systems of depressing religious practice. Eternal Power too you both!

  • Kent said:

    Thank you, Mr President. Taking a stand for equality is something that so few “leaders” seem willing to do. That said, sir, the Elders have plucked the low hanging fruit. While this is admirable, equity based on race, socioeconomic status, sexual orientation remain, fights few are willing to take on. These inequalities are also perpetuated by religion and also need to be countered.

  • Brock Vodden said:

    What strikes me as most surprising is the fact that in so many circles, Mr. Carter’s position seems so novel and bold. He is stating the obvious, but for millions of people, even those in high places, are either in denial or ignorant or brainwashed.

  • Robert Cobb said:

    President Carter is right in denouncing the midieval treatment of women in Islamic countries and other such cultures around the world. However, to even consider equating the Southern Baptist Convetion’s Scriptural stance on the ordination of women with such barnbaric practices is absurd. He is wrong in saying that there were women apostles, and there is no evidence that there were wny women bishops. Also, while I know where he likely gets the idea of deconesses, this is highly suspect as the Greek word is usually misinterpreted by English-speaking people. God did in fact say that the woman’s desire would be toward her husband because of her role in original sin, but man and woman both share equally in the consequences. Paul clearly said that a deacon or bishop (overseer or pastor) is to be the husband of one wife. That is pretty clear. However, that does not preclude women from holding major leadership roles in the church outside of those that are ordained. The ironic thin is that Southern Baptist Convention official positions are not binding on the individual congregations. They are simply a statement of the Convention’s public position. Interestingly, the Wouthern Baptist International Mission Board will appoint a single woman as a foreign missionary but not a single man. This does not aound like discrimination against women to me. Many religions treat women deplorably, but Biblical Christianity as I have described treats them with all the respect they deserve. It’s too bad people like the former president don’t realize this. Everyone is entitled to his or her opinion. I don’t happen to share his on this subject. God created woman from the man’s side so that he would be her protector but still partner in life. Don’t base your opinion of conservative Christian beliefs on a few crackpots. Do some digging and you will find it treatds women with far more dignity than many people realize.

  • Renee said:

    I think that Mattie Stepanek would like this very much, Mr. President.

  • eva close said:

    Jimmy Carter is wonderful and always has been a great man

  • Ken Hamm said:

    I so love this guy, what a wonderful person and President he was, so so far ahead of his time, it is a crime that he was not re-elected for a second term. If we had listened to him way back then, we would no longer be dependent on oil…

  • Gee-Gee Smith said:

    I have always respected and admired Jimmy Carter, and this statement just increases my admiration! It is not a trivial thing for someone to leave behind the roots of their faith, but sometimes the Spirit speaks so strongly to our hearts, that we muct. Thank you, Pres Carter, for listening to that Inner Voice.

  • Betty Ragle said:

    Jimmy Carter continues to represent the integrity and genius of his presidency long after he served as our leader. President Carter is the perfect example of a real Christian and lives life the way we all should: do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

    God bless you Jimmy Carter and thank you for being a man and standing up for all women.

    You are blessed!

  • ITA Dowler said:

    I always liked Jimmy and his wife. I thought he got a raw deal when he was president. He is an intelligent and ethical man. So rare to see this in the public these days.

  • Miriam said:

    This took true courageous leadership. Thank you, Jimmy Carter.

  • Eugene Dornbrook said:

    “In some respects woman is superior to man. She is more tender-hearted, more receptive, her intuition is more intense.” ‘Abdul-Bahá

  • Deanna Richardson said:

    I don’t think President Carter left the southern Baptist denomination, I think the Baptists are struggling with the the real meaning of the gospel and Mr. Carter is still leading this nation and the Baptists in that respect. I have respected our President for his good works after his successful presidency and still feel a sense of loss that he was illegally manipulated out of his second term. President Carter has been a blessing to the people of the world and an example for presidents Clinton and most likely Obama. It will be fun watching what Obama does with his after president life and I am hopeful that it will be as outstanding as Presidents Carter and Clintons (‘President of the world’) has been.

  • Bertie said:

    This is just sad because Jimmy Carter might have left the Southern Baptist but it was not because of that their belief that woman were not equal. The sin in the Garden of Eden was on both Adam and Eve. They were both punished and not just Eve alone. This is because they disobeyed and did what God told them not to do. There were many fine examples of women in Old and New Testament that were a part of God’s plan and purpose. These women served as prophetess, ambassadors, queens, warriors, church workers and devoted mothers faithful and loyal to God. True Christians following the plan of Salvation through Jesus Christ do not rape, mutilate, torture, or treat woman as second class citizens. Other religions have the traits that Jimmy Carter describes in his article but he wants us to practice tolerance to these religions. Tolerance is saying I agree with what you are doing. As the Bible says you cannot serve two masters because you will either love one and hate the other.

  • Jacky Spaulding said:

    This is classic Jimmy Carter. He is my hero and I am very proud of the stand he is taking for me and for all other women.

  • eli orteza said:

    Mr. President,

    You lost your religion but have kept the faith. Religion is for men to be accepted by men. Faith is beyond that, it is man’s sacred covenant with God.

    God bless you for being so courageous to write this piece!

  • Arlene said:

    Wow how profound, always did like president Carter thank you Sir

  • Alice Dennehy said:

    President Jimmy Carter thank you for telling a truth that women know and have always known that it has always been about power. The world has been a better place because of you and the other Elders and I for one am most grateful for your stance.

  • MavaMarie Vandervennet said:

    Nothing left to say except perhaps: “Thank you President Carter!” Thank you for your courage, strength and conviction. I would rather stand beside you than with any leader in my own church, government or business.

  • David S. Clark said:

    I am delighted to have someone of President Carter’s stature speak out on this important issue. Superbly written, the piece echos the writings of Bishop Spong, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, and others, concerning the ignorant, bigoted, misogynous mistreatment of half the world’s population and the pedantic ignominious justifications for this mistreatment. It is encouraging to see women from countries around the world becoming organized in awareness and political groups, to speak with a common voice on women’s issues and against unspeakable gender injustices.

  • Tessie Adams said:

    In the Bible … God put Adam on earth and immediatly made ‘Eve” the temptress and the human female beneath the male …. Us women did not stand a chance from the get go. Meaning that we came from the male rib. God is a male. Jesus is a male. Jesus’s mother Mary never had carnal knowledge with Joseph to produce a baby. It’s just no wonder why us woman are concidered beneath the male. That’s how we were put on Earth … ( according to the Bible )

  • Nancy England said:

    The world is a better place for having courageous and thoughtful people like President Carter. His work, through the Carter Foundation, to rid Africa of river blindness, is inspiring.

  • Evangeline Maynard said:

    WOW! MUCH RESPECT TO A GREAT PRESIDENT. WELL DONE! WELL SAID!

  • Rude Calderon said:

    Mr. Carter once again speaks truth…

  • David S. Clark said:

    I am delighted to have someone of President Carter’s stature speak out on this important issue. Superbly written, the piece echos the writings of Bishop Spong, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, and others. It is encouraging to see women from countries around the world becoming organized in awareness and political groups, to speak with a common voice on women’s issues and against gender injustices

  • Diane Young said:

    Thank you, Mr. President. Well said. I am curious to know, however, how many women are among the Elders.

  • sTan Fowler said:

    I read somewhere that the definition of a fundamentalist , is a person that believes in the literal translation of selective portions of a badly translated book. And much of it started in the fourth century .

    Perhaps some food for thought here on why Carter was not reelected http://consortiumnews.com/2013/02/15/how-neocons-messed-up-the-mideast/

  • R.G. Campbell said:

    I felt American voters gave President Carter a raw deal when they voted him out of office in 1980. I’ve never figured out what he did as president to deserve that. He’s always been a man of the people. “There he goes again” should not have been enough to get Ronald Reagan elected president. Even today, American right-wingers vilify President Carter without being able to explain why in any cogent manner, yet President Carter has been doing nothing but good in the world since leaving office, building houses for Habitat for Humanity, trying to lay the groundwork for peace worldwide in various ways. His service to America and to the world richly deserves admiration and emulation, as does President Clinton’s work since leaving office.

  • Joe said:

    Stop agreeing with something that makes you feel good and your own purpose. How many of you have even bothered to read the bible. Forget about religion. Adam and Eve are both responsable for original sin. Look at it as the first fight of a married couple. When God speaks to both of them they both try to put the blame on the other. Sound familiar. I know it does to me. I know there is a lot of men out there that are garbage. But that’s life. Jimmy i’m sure is a decent man, but this is garbage.

  • Adel Abadeer said:

    Well said, Mr. President!
    Without free women the world is a big prison.
    Women’s freedom is integral to free society, better society, and capable and functioning society..
    We should free public spheres (and hopefully private spheres too)from all discriminating norms (religious or others) against women.
    Religion should be practices freely and individually without imposing religious norms on others, e.g., women. All enforced religious discriminating norms (or the misinterpretation of such norms) should be repealed and rejected.
    I’ve been saved by the grace of God.. ‘Religion’ is a social construct, Religions don’t bring peace. Genuine Faith and inner-peace bring peace , love, acceptance, freedom, self-esteem, respect,and free access to capabilities and functionings to all.

  • Joe Mustain said:

    God bless Jimmy Carter, God certainly speaks through him.

  • Erlinda said:

    I think history will be much kinder to Jimmy Carter than his contemporaries were. He is the best kind of Christian – a thinking one. As one who is grappling with her identity as a Christian, I am inspired and less fearful of taking a leap of faith from the tradition in which I was raised.

    Thank you President Carter. Thank you.

  • Susan Frances said:

    Thank you Jimmy Carter…your honor inspires me. You rock!!!

  • Mary Kali said:

    I have some favorite passages in the Bible…King Soloman’s Song….The Book of Wisdom…not in the Baptist Bible. Interesting, those are where in the bible women are honored. Things to ponder.

  • Sheree Victorian said:

    Times are changing and for the better and every time a man of your caliber, ans station in life stands up for all that is right in life an belief system; God is pleased. Certainly you Mr. Jimmy Carter are a very wise man, who God has chosen to add to the shift in the attitudes of men on this earth at this time. I always believed you were sincere in your political dealings as our President. And today I know I was right to think so. Continued blessing to you and your family.

  • Carmina said:

    God bless you President Carter

  • Darryldean said:

    How could I not share such an amazing testimonial?! As I read this article I weeped and grieved for his loss and celebrated his convictions and courage to speak out and to stand up and out! The tears in his eyes and the sadness are the pains of truth and love of which I can feel in my heart too! God Bless you Jimmy Carter you are indeed an extraordinary human being! Truly a loving man. A spiritual human being and great teacher!

  • Linda Lemke said:

    I must agree with Morton who said “Again, I am proud of Jimmy Carter’s ability to express his views so eloquently. I remember exactly where we were (in County Democratic Headquarters) in 1976 when he was elected President of the United States. I cried then because I felt he was the wisest man to be elected in my lifetime. After more than 35 year, I feel the same!”

  • Ernie Delfin said:

    AMEN to Pres. Carter’s bold statement… Men who are secure in themselves should not be afraid to give true and equal treatment and opportunity to all, including women… If they don’t they are not genuine leaders to lead anyone!…

  • John Brown said:

    One of our best presidents, a true Christian and a man that I would be proud to have in my house.

  • Grete Perkins said:

    President Carter, you must have agonized long and deeply about your decision to sever your ties with the Southern Baptist Convention. I admire your decision. You have championed for world peace, equal rights of all people, Habitat for Humanity, Heifer International and many other causes.You have set an example for all peoples. You have my support, and I am sure the support of many people worldwide. Women of the world thank you.

  • Frank Zinno said:

    Wonderfully, the action of Soul consciousness. A perspective of the whole rather than the part. this is the courage of a man and the expression of wisdom seldom seen in these parts …3d that is. the world would be so different with this man leading the way. Imagine???

  • Lawrence P Frazier Jr said:

    President Carter,

    I have always supported and been so very proud of you both as President and as a former President. You set the standard for all your successors to find a way to perform service for all people on this earth.

    As a 71 year old man from Massachusetts who was influenced by the election of our beloved President John F. Kennedy at age 19, I cannot find words adequate enough to express how proud I am of you for the words you expressed in this article for the Women’s Press.

    The discrimination of women driven by all religions and the twisting of the words of Scripture in my opinion is a violation of human rights. I am pained by narrow-minded elected officials in the United States acting to demean and discriminate against our women, now 51% of our population. As a nation, I often feel we are no longer “A Shining City on a Hill” and a terrible example of representatve democracy to the world.

    Thank you for you courage, intellect, kindness, and good works. My one regret is that I am not a member of the Elders.

    Again, thank you so very much and best wishes.

  • Hesse said:

    Thank You President Carter, for voicing publicly,something I have been saying for years. The most untrustworthy creature in the world is man. How convenient that they are the ones who transcribe the Bible.using the words of The Lord to keep people enslaved.

  • li-hsia wang, md said:

    Thank you Mr President.

  • Jodene Perrin-Gill said:

    President Carter is such an honorable and intelligent
    person, I am sure he had no choice but to leave the
    Religion of his youth. I had the same choice to make
    I made it and have never looked back. Southern Baptists
    are not what they used to be – sadly, they have been
    taken over by a cadre of bigoted and selfish men who
    serve their own purposes and not those of our Savior.
    God bless Jimmy Carter!

  • Diana Rudametkin said:

    Dear Mr. President Carter,

    Your words are a reflection of what thousands of us think. It is so refreshing to hear someone who deeply believes in women’s equality express with so much clarity the disparities that so many women have had endure and that, that person has a voice that can be heard. I hope that your message is contagious and that our generation was able to teach our children, so they can teach our grandkids, the better path. I congratulate you and your wife for the great example you have chosen to be with your words and actions.

    Have a Happy Easter and rejoice in Jesus love

  • Losing my religion for equality…by Jimmy Carter | americansforcommonsenseblog said:

    [...] you to the Women’s Press for this article. Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like [...]

  • Janie Glade said:

    Thank you Sir. Your words give us hope when our spiritual leaders have failed us.

  • Caroline Kennedy said:

    This man has soared in my estimation in the decades since leaving the Presidency. And now, with this speech, he has soared even higher. It is a brave statement but it is a true statement. It took guts to say it. But he did what he knew to be right. What a brave and brilliant man.

  • Omar Kafawin said:

    The best President The US ever had

  • Martha Jordan said:

    Amen Mr. President. You have stated what I have long believed to be true. It is an affront to God for men or anyone else to discriminate or deny human rights on the basis of gender, specifically female. I have always believed that biblical interpretations were often skewed to the belief of the the writers. As we all know, those writers were men. Thank you for having the courage to speak out on this important issue.

  • Lushstrands said:

    Wow, I am speechless. Thank you President Carter.

  • Jeffrey Veatch said:

    President Carter is a true statesman whose impact on our society has far outlived his presidency.

  • Angela Mercy said:

    Thank you for your eloquent support for equality and justice and for being willing to sacrifice something precious in their support. You are a true Elder. It is time for all of us Elders to step forward and take responsibility for speaking truth and acting from loving wisdom.

  • Chris hoffman said:

    Thanks President Carter for this article.someof myfavorite people are women & girls& i wish for equality between the sexes while acknowleding the differences.diversity ok!need gifts & talents of both sexes. I hope all women & girls can be educated around the world. I hope all women & girlssafe from rape & other forms of violence! I hope women have reproductive rights that meet there needs.i have a Mom,2 sisters, 4 neices,friends who are girls & women,coworkers who are women, a Human issue.i goto Anglican church in Canada sometimes. Wehave women priests,deacons, wardens & bishops.i like men & women in leadership positions. I have taught sunday school & worked with youth in the past & have worked with children,youth.need both sexes gifts & talents in different parts of life.i work in a group home with young men with autism.Bothtraditional women fields.Different equality!

  • Keith said:

    Well done Mr Preident!!

  • Elsie said:

    I disagree with Mr. Carter. My husband and I model our marriage after the Scriptural marrital teachings and are very happy. My husband doesn’t treat me poorly. He adores me and cares for me and is very sacrificial to meet my needs and wants. The Bible says he is to love me as Christ loved the church which means he would die for me. He is a very loving, attentive, caring husband who makes me feel like a princess and there’s not much I wouldn’t do for him.

    In response, I am delighted to be sacrificial in caring for him. I don’t mind making his meals or cleaning his clothes. I consider it an honor and a privilege to tend a Godly man. I share my ideas and feeling with him and he considers them heavily in his decisions, often going the extra mile to accommodate them. We’ve been married for decades and I adore him today as much, and in many ways more, than in the early years.

    It is not hard to submit to a man who honors you as the Bible tells him to and as he honors and cares for me it makes me think he’s the most wonderful man on earth and this makes me revernce and honor and adore him. He thinks he’s incredibly fortunate to have a mate who treats him this way and it makes him consider me as a precious lamb that he protects and nourishes and as he does that, it makes me think he’s wonderful- this cycle goes on and on. We get many comments in public about how loving we are with each other even at our age. It’s the way God designed it and if people would truly follow it, they’d be amazed at how deeply satified they’d be.

    My husband and I were not Christians in the early years of our marriage. Although we were very much in love, life was hard because I was very feministic and I fought him on many levels. I wanted my way and I wanted to be in charge. A man is created to lead and when shoved into subjugation will either fight back or withdraw emotionally. Either way, the wife then starves emotionally which makes her angry and bitter and she bites him repeatedly- this will not make him consider her precious! I was shooting myself in the foot as women often do.

    Then we came to the Lord and we started learning His ways; the man to adore the wife and care for her deeply and the woman to care for her husband and let him be a man. In the years since I got off my high horse and let my husband me a man, I have found that he treats me the way I always craved. But a woman won’t succeed in creating that by belittling, bossing, or battling her husband. That will make him withdraw emotionally and possibly physically and leave her in a lurch… and then she’s likely yo blame him!

    I now have what every woman should have- a husband who takes tremendous care of me because he feels like he can’t dare to lose me and that is because I’ve endeared myself to him by honoring him. I love how he responds to my adoration. I’m so very sorry that any woman has ever been treated otherwise and I’m very concerned that poor treatment of women is justified by religion. God never approved of it. His pettern is that the woman encourage the man and the man adore the woman and if done right, they work together seamlessly, give great pleasure to both, and greatly honor the Lord in the process.

    Many in our church and religious circles conduct their marriages likwise and I see many very happily married people. Unhappy couples are the exception in our church and related fellowships. We’ve put this Biblical pattern of marriage to the test and have found it to be amazingly wonderful!

    That any man would mistreat any woman is tragic and that he would try to justify it by the Scriptures is blasphemous. That any couple would miss the delights of marriage that God would have for them is very sad indeed.

  • Charles Kratz said:

    Although I personally find religion incomprehensible, I am able to recognize that there have been people who have demonstrated that faith can often inspire believers to become incredibly fine human beings. Such a believer is Jimmy Carter, possibly the finest person ever to serve as President of the United States.

  • Stephen Pate said:

    That’s a bold move for a prominent religious man but President Carter never turned away from truth and humanity.

    Jesus said the greatest command was to love one another, in fact it was the last thing he said before Ascension into heaven.

    As humans we pervert His teachings through human desire for power. Power is a great corrupter and power over women is finally understood in opposition to human rights.

    There is no need to exert power over women for in treating them equally, men gain greater power and freedom, and the peace that comes from the love of God and all humankind.

  • Margery Edwards said:

    Dear President Carter,
    Thank you so much! I have always felt, and said, that you are the most admirable human being to hold the office of President in my lifetime (and I am 66 years old, so that is awhile). This is just one more example of your loving, compassionate courageous work. Thank you!

  • Nancy Lewis said:

    Mr. President,

    God bless you and your family as you continue to lead them by example of a Godly father. Your stance for the Biblical teachings and walking the walk has always been the reason I have respected you.

    Thank you for speaking out for the protection of all women in the world of being “used” humans not only for sexual pleasures but as lower paid workers in the American culture. As a retired school teacher of 32 years, I have always known that in this profession predominately held by women, we were second class citizens in pay. With professional athletes being paid millions of dollars, hardworking teachers who give so much of their time and money for classroom supplies, clothing for students, etc. make pennies. Too me, that is an injustice in our society. Granted there are some teachers not worth their weight in salt but for those dedicated ones who do work with students to bring them up to new levels, there should be a higher pay scale. The ones who are there to draw a pay check should be ousted. (I know that this may be birdwalking from the above story, but to me and other women who were the sole breadwinner and all who “are missionaries” on the home front as teachers, it important.)

    God bless you and may your be rewarded here by good health, energy and support in your stance for The Bible and the rights for not only women but all people in God’s world.

    I look forward to meeting you, my brother, in Heaven.

    Happy Easter for He indeed lives within your heart. We serve a risen Savior!

    NWL in TN.

  • Lance Webster said:

    President Carter, I ask you to consider that Sexism is also the basis for Homophobia. In our culture, men who love other men are considered to be giving over their masculinity, and are looked down upon for that. It really can’t be the sex because for the most part sex straight men and women do most of the same things Gay and Lesbian couples do. But the worst thing you can say about a boy is “he throws a ball like a girl.” But it’s not considered so bad if a girl plays soccer or softball or many other athletics. Dad would be proud of her, but not of his son who takes up ballet. Consider, Mr. President, that if there were no Sexism, there would probably be no homophobia. So….thank you for striking blow against Sexism! You are also striking a blow at homophobia.

  • Lance Webster said:

    By the way, Sir, you are not losing your soul….just losing a sexist religion…and regaining your soul. Congratulations. And Thanks.

  • jerry bryant said:

    Hi there; in the world of change we must be aware of the effect of change. There is a misunderstanding in the place of the female of our world. She is a must stand along of man as a partner in evolution. there can not be one without the other. To try to escalate one without the other is to punish the race for having cut off one arm and creating law to justify our actions.
    Dear god, what ever form you choose to take please make the truth most evident: we are one. One without the other means that we are not whole. We try to create that which is perfect by making our gender more perfect than our counter part lower than our selves. And in turn the counterpart tries to balance the equation by belittling . This does not work so there in lies the problem. MAN,( WAIT IF IT WILL JHELP} WOMAN AND MAN MUST COME TO AN AGREEMEMT: WE ARE THE SAME CREATION, DIFFERING ONLY BECAUSE WE NEED TO PRO CREATE OR WE AR DOOMED TO EXTENSION .
    WE are strong and powerful together and can control the universe, separated by gender we will be responsible for leading our race into extinction. So may I say I Love you. Please Let us work together g (remembering that in the universe we are one! Not separate but co- creators of our world. If we choose to separate ourselves we will be like those that came before us…… doomed and to replaced to a creation that understands the necessity of dual existence . I Love you all as we are one.

  • Duke Petree said:

    Thank You! Well spoken as always! Peace to you and yours.

  • Jenn Rayl said:

    God bless Nelson Mandela and Jimmy Carter and thanks to them both for taking a stand.

  • Maria Walsh said:

    Yes this is excellent. I sense a renewal and a wave of feminism happening. Does anyone else? Feminism has changned the world , men and women unlike any other great ‘ism’ . The thing tyo so now is re-post this on to all your FB contacts etc to swell that wave. Its all energy waves isn’t it in a scientific way?

    Greetings from Dublin, Ireland

  • Billy J Snider said:

    The entire Old Testament is the Geneology of Joseph. Joseph is Jesus Step Father. Joseph was not the Father of Jesus, God is. Mary however was his Mother. How many people know her geneology. Remember, especially today, Easter Sunday, that Jesus came into this world to save us in spite of ourselfs. He is alive!

  • Military Wives said:

    President Carter sets a good example here: he read the Bible before making assumptions on it. As a result he was able to keep his faith in God, the Bible, but get rid of a religion that did not follow it.

    This is a good example of how to define your faith.

  • Anis said:

    Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

  • Anis said:

    Thank you!

  • Robyn Groves said:

    Very wise & courageous decision President Carter. I

  • Carol Ghering said:

    I am deeply touched. President Carter has one of the greatest minds of our time. I was glad to finally realize who he really is. Thank you

  • Alan said:

    Although I think president Carter is off on many things, this is not one of them. It takes courage to leave the church he had for so many years. Well written commentary.

  • James van horn said:

    Jimmy Carter is really making a difference. Good for him. If only the new pope would follow Jimmy’s example.
    Thank President Carter.

  • Edgar Numrich said:

    President Carter has been a member of my family since we met personally in 1980 at the home of his friend, the late John Schwabe, in Portland, Oregon. Looking at his signed photograph in my living room as this is written includes my daily prayer of blessings for him, and with thanks for his unstinting service to humanity.

  • Gerald said:

    Very well said..

  • Suzy said:

    I think there’s a reason that men are the head of the household. It is biblical that women’s primary role is to take care of her husband and children’s needs. And now we are in an age that we want to be equal and make just as money as men. So our family’s are divorced, kids are pregnant at 15, doing drugs, killing their parents & faithless. And we wonder why. Moms are not home doing ‘their’ God ordained jobs and all hell has broken loose!!
    I’m sorry but I am not a feminist. I think the fact that Carter is blaming rape and genital mutilation on the bible is wrong. This whole gender equality I bet is the main cause of half the country coming out as gay. Were taking on the man’s role, ignoring our own, and making our men be the stay at home “mom” in many cases. Everyone is confused!
    Its the hearts of the person that bad things happen. Not b/c we are misinterpreting the bible. The fact that we are ignoring the Word is why we are all so unhappy with our God given role!! Shame on Carter!!!

    Sorry, but that article ticked me off!!

  • Saskia Hegt said:

    Thank you President Carter!
    You explain so clearly and sensitive. Yes it is amazing how still women are so often ‘put away in the corner’
    Thank you for your words.
    Saskia Hegt

  • Saskia Hegt said:

    Thank you President Carter for your wise words.

  • Dave Norris said:

    He is a good man who is too often misunderstood by those who cannot hold a candle to his goodness, his wisdom, his kindness.

  • deegeejay said:

    Wait! Is this the same guy who supports Palestinian and other Muslim murderers? Muslims are the worst offenders of women’s rights and are among the worst offenders of human rights. This declaration has zero credibility – I’m dumbfounded anyone would buy this.

  • Kerri Childress said:

    This moved more more than I could possibly say. I have been working with a non-profit called Fair Girls, http://fairgirls.org/, that is trying to stop trafficking of girls internationally and in our own country. We actually have one of the girls living with us now. Thank you President Carter for speaking out so elequently for girls and women — you have the opportunity to truly change the world. Bless you this Easter Sunday.

  • Iva Jewel Tucker said:

    President Carter is a hero of the faith, living his testimony through the years. He was an exemplary president, too, as history will show. His remarkable Christian lifestyle is exceeded only by his intellect. I am indeed proud of him and Mrs. Carter.

  • christianecon.com said:

    The best president this country’s ever had. Nobody in that office has had more integrity and moral intelligence than President Carter.

  • Alexandra Dean said:

    President Carter, you have said what I have felt, sensed but failed ultimately to fully articulate all my life. Thank you, in the most profound sense of the words.
    Alex

  • N. J. Lindquist said:

    Thank you for these very true words. So much would change if the Christian church followed Christ with it’s whole heart instead of man-made rules. So reminiscent of the Pharisees and Saducees of Jesus’ time.

  • David said:

    While I struggle with the theological conclusions of denominations like the SBC on the issue of women in leadership, I believe Mr. Carter has misunderstood the SBC position. To hold an egalitarian view implies nothing about the value or rights of men being held higher than those of women. It is about roles held within the Church body.

    To suggest that the egalitarian doctrinal stance leads to the human rights atrocities highlighted in this piece is naive and blatant sensationalism. Even though ultra-conservative by today’s standards, the Church which was birthed in a staunchly male-dominated culture, was a liberating force for women. Other religions may, by their teachings, create cultures of abuse for women, but the Christian faith, properly understood and practiced, sets ALL people free in Christ and provides a platform for reconciliation of ALL people in Christ.

    Working to set women free from the brutal oppression being practiced in many forms and places is admirable and vital, but beware of pinning the blame for such oppression on followers of Jesus or the teachings they hold.

  • FilizVZ said:

    He is my favorite US president .. I truly admire him

  • Melony said:

    I have always known that President Carter was a great and intelligent man, this is just more proof. Thank you.

  • David said:

    I confused my terms previously. Did not mean “egalitarian,” but “complementarian.”

  • Weekly Linkroll | M. Fenn said:

    [...] Losing my religion for equality…by Jimmy Carter Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter shares his thoughts on leaving the Southern Baptist Convention because of its misogynist attitudes. [...]

  • LYNNE LARSEN said:

    Years ago I had a “Gimmie Jimmy” bumper sticker….It’s still exactly true! My friend Dr. Jean Houston spent time with President Carter and Roslyn and thinks so highly of both of them. Jimmy Carter you are a blessing and a Fine man. Thank you for your support for equality and for your soul searching which brought you to your difficult and painful decision. You were Loved. You are Loved.

  • Justin said:

    It’s gonna take a lot of persuasion, however this is a powerful subject that needs more attention.
    Good job Mr.Carter.

  • Debbie Lynch said:

    President Carter as always very presidential in his remarks that ring so true and should be shared with the world.

  • Andrew Gallagher said:

    Thank you President Carter. You remain one of my favorite leaders. It is always troubling when a small snippet from the Bible is thunderously delivered as “The Word of God”. I am certain in all written communications complete understanding demands a rigorous attempt to find the message. We begin our Christian journey with our Baptism, cleansing sin. Our lives must respect that beginning and reflect our improved understand of Gods word through Prayer. Happy Easter.

  • Donn Coon said:

    Further reason I have always loved and respected this man. Thank You, President Carter, for continuing to lead us.

  • Anne Mikkola said:

    Just came across this text and translated parts of it into a Finnish Christian news and blog forum, http://www.blogimetsa.fi/uutiset/item/533-jimmy-carter-eroaa-kirkosta-tasa-arvon-vuoksi
    Some of the Finnish Lutheran mission organisations still promote this type of teaching. Thank you for caring!

  • Kathlee said:

    On behalf of all the women in the world,thank you, Mr. President. It took an incrediable amount of courage to stand up for your believes in a church that you clearly dedicated yourself to.

  • Tabra Tunoa said:

    Thank you President Carter for what you have done for women and our country. You and your wife are two very courageous people and a great example for everyone and that includes all religious and non religious peoples of the world.

  • Karen Baker said:

    It seems like President Carter has laid the blame on the Southern Baptists for all the ill treatment of women world wide. They must be a very powerful group. The best way to change group think is from within, and he has thrown away that chance. I am surprised he did not resign from the male race, instead, as they are the ones truly responsible for subjugating women. (If you don’t count Satan, that is.)

  • Duke Smith said:

    As with all those that micro teache scriptures there are those that get lost in the pursuit of their micro understandings.

    Your title says “Losing my Religion”. We never needed now nor do we now need now more leaders and teachers of misdirected truths about religion which would explain some of the other embraces I have seen you do through the years.

    Too bad you did not focus on the messiah more and less on religion.

    If you are going to follow the bible as a foundation of truth, you can not deny that man was created first and women out of man. How does that apply to this post. It was God’s design and religion, as it always does spins the outcome to its purpose.

    Now we have a nation hell bent on perverting most if not all of God’s fundamental truths. God help our country.

  • Kathleen Sea said:

    May God bless you, President Carter. I have always loved you and your presidency. My son is a high school teacher. Your portrait hangs in his classroom, as he instructs his (Georgia) students. This recent piece reinforces our high regard for you.

  • Janet Deal said:

    Dear President Carter,

    Once more you have inspired me as you have since you first ran for President. I own all of the books you authored, and have shared them with others. This writing is inspired, actually, and will inspire many. May your every day be blessed and may your lovely wife and daughter continue to thrive as our country must evolve from the current backward movement offered by those who prefer to remain in office rather than join you and your Elders in your quest to elevate women to their rightful place in society. God bless you, dear man. And God help all men and women to respect the rights of all people.

  • Sylvia Wills said:

    Thank You President Carter ! You are a true hero. We are all Gods children. God is Love !

  • John Steins said:

    Thank you President Carter for leading by example. Your courage is something I will continue to draw upon when feeling discouraged about the state of the world and women’s place in it.

  • Priscilla Tempelman said:

    I love you, Elder Carter! A courageous, wise, and very loving decision.

  • Molly Ziske said:

    Wow, this is fantastic. Must share with my daughter, CARTER (yep, that’s her name and I couldn’t be more proud!).

  • Jeannette said:

    Bravo, Mr. Carter! A strong and beautiful statement from a man of great integrity.

  • Thomas said:

    Mr. Carter has a fundamental lack of understanding of “equal”. Men and women are created with equal dignity, both of them in the image and likeness of God. They are complimentary, not interchangeable. Christianity was the first major religion to free women from being simply the property of their husbands. The fact that some religious leaders interpret the scriptures in a way the discriminates unjustly against women is testament that their faith is far from the truth. Come and see what the Roman Catholic Church teaches, Mr. Carter. You might learn something about true equality as we live out the Trinity in our bodies.

  • T'Lene Tillotson said:

    Tears of joy and appreciation stream as I read this most eloquent article. Bless you, President Carter.

  • Jenny Thgipen said:

    My esteem for President Carter continues to grow. Once again, he is on the right side of history.

  • S. Tighe said:

    The courage of Mr. Carter, who is a leader in his faith, to take this clear and bold move, to do the RIGHT THING, when doing half as much would still be considered a big step, is soooo encouraging. Thank you Mr. President.

  • Mark Mercer said:

    May the Lord bless you, brother in Christ James, Mr. President!

    The twisting of Scripture taken out of context, applied with the bludgeon of bigotry, is a sin with which all of our various branches of the Church Universal must struggle.

    I am thankful that you bravely make this proclamation and initiative, as I am for many of your actions during and after your Presidency. And for giving us a example of someone truly trying to walk in faith and follow the teachings of Jesus, more than the dictates of a particular church division.

    Blessings on this Easter!
    Mark Mercer

  • Michelle M said:

    I consider YOU to be a true Christian, Mr. President, and I am sure Jesus Christ would, too. Thank you for your outspokenness and courage.I thank God for people like you and President Nelson Mandela, former president of my home country.

  • John West said:

    Best President the USA ever had. Real Ethics.

  • Margaret said:

    Carter’s clarity and eloquence help dispel the essentialist myth that “all men” or “all women” are one way or another…could it be that arrogance fuels and maintains patriarchical abuses? we see this in the broader context of human-centered abuses of the natural world as well ~ disregarding, in-considering the “other.”
    I encourage Carter to continue sharing his insights, beliefs and process for there are many people listening.

  • Jan said:

    Thank you President Carter for your well-said and timely letter and to your commitment to helping women around the world. You have truly impressed me. God bless.

  • Robin Ayars said:

    Amos 5:24. “Let justice roll on like a river, righteousness like a never ending stream.” God bless President Carter.

  • Jack Moore said:

    God bless you Brother Carter…you have been an inspiration to me for years.

  • Joy S. Grimmett said:

    Thank you, President Carter, for expressing so eloquently the dilemma of my own and my son’s regarding the positions of our chosen faith’s attitudes toward women and homosexuals. Bless you for leading us in the right path.

  • Shalese Huang said:

    Courage and wisdom, at its finest. Thank you President.

  • Madeleine du Toit said:

    It seems to me Jimmy Carter was the American president who least relied on manipulation to achieve his ends. I’ve always felt he was a good human being. This confirms it. And here, too, I find further evidence of the influence for good of our own Nelson Mandela … Madiba, we shall not look upon your like again (I fear).

  • Artie said:

    Right on, President Carter! You can depend on Jimmy to do the right thing. He was one of the finest but most underrated presidents, and a man who, after he left office, told the secret service “Go protect somebody important. I’ll be fine.”

  • Kay Wilemon said:

    Mr. President,

    I love you. Hope Rosalyn doesn’t mind.

  • Stephen Rodenbough said:

    There are far to many churches in this country for the former President to have taken this step.
    Carter and SBC president Albert Moeller had been sparring for the past couple of years. Ties with the Southern Baptist Convention are much looser than ties with other denominations. Both Carter and his home church has always been free to sever ties with the Convention without suffering the consequences of other denominations. His congregation would have been able to keep their church property after leaving the Convention unlike those people who have taken similar measures with the Episcopal Church.
    The Southern Baptist Church believes that Scripture (and therefore God Himself) forbids women’s ordination and that practicing homosexuals have no place in the Church (an ex communicable offense).
    That is our stance, we hold to it with no apologies. If one cannot live with that, the Southern Baptist Church is not for you.

  • meg said:

    Respect President Carter. I just added you to the short list of my personal heroes.

  • Pamela Hodgdon said:

    I wish Mr. Carter was president today. He is an inspiration to the world.

  • Beth said:

    I feel the same way. President Carter has an understanding that is shared by few others in a position of authority. His support of women and acknowledgement of the contributions of women throughout our history is very meaningful.

  • Lisa E said:

    You continue to impress me, Pres. Carter, after all these years. What a bold/important decision and a brilliant essay to explain it. I applaud you!

  • Jean Rhoads said:

    As far as I am concerned the world needs more people like Jimmy Carter.

  • Pete Eckhardt said:

    Bravo, Mr. Carter! So eloquently stated. I too have lost my “religion,” but have not lost the faith.

  • Michael said:

    Bravo President Carter! True equality for women will come when we honor the feminine spirit,when we honor the Goddess as well as the God.

  • Maria E. Terragno said:

    I think President Carter’s words are an example for the whole world leaders. You guys in the US should be very proud of him! I’m sure you are.

  • Stacey Hasbrook said:

    Well said words of wisdom.

  • Carol Plaisted Tullgren said:

    Thank you, President Carter. I am so proud that you were once our president. I am also proud that you have the courage to stand up for that which you believe. Equality for women will only make the world, for all – a better place. Much happiness to you and your wife and family.

  • David Lynn Fleming said:

    This had to be hard for President Carter. Not equality for all humans as he has always been about that but severing his ties with the organized Baptists. Love you Jimmy Carter!

  • Allen Linville said:

    Would Mr. Carter like to run for Prime Minister of Canada? He’s much more intelligent and compassionate than any of our politicians.

    You Americans were lucky to have him in office as long as you did.

  • Karen Hattman said:

    This is a man who I have always respected but now he has risen in my estimation even higher. He has courage and insight and is kind as well. A wonderful human being!

  • Tavit said:

    The idea that Eve was created second to Adam is a horrendous mis-cultural reflection of the true Babylonia myth of Enki and Ninhursag. PLEASE Google the story and read the myth. Eve (the lady of life) is actually the “lady of the rib” who was created by a female goddess to heal the male (who through ignorance and greed became ill).

    Unfortunately, the Sumerian culture was already extinct (and the true myth partly forgotten) by the time the story became contaminated with the desert culture’s subjugation of women.

    Sheesch! I so wish that people would just pick up a book and read once and a while!

  • Jimmy Carter, Active Energy 1 - 9 Energies said:

    [...] Jimmy Carter, Active Energy 1In this statement by Jimmy Carter, Losing my religion for equality…by Jimmy Carter on why he has rejected his religion for equality personfies the strength, conviction, vulnerability [...]

  • pat said:

    Always loved President Carter. May have not been the greatest president, but he is a great man and a great humanitarian. I hope this gets to the right people who oppress women in the name of a god or tradition.

  • Fred gentry said:

    Bless you and your families dedication to public service, notably your mother. I’ve always said you are the great president of my lifetime, I’m 60. Why people diss your presidency and laud Reagan (an international criminal) is beyond me brother. Named my youngest son for you, born 1981. All my love!!

  • Linda Rooney said:

    I was raised in the Covenant church and never agreed with the interpretation of the Bible when it came to Women. I am so proud of President Carter to stand up for equality and tell the Church they are wrong. God Bless him and those who are willing to be true Christians in our society.

  • Haydee Marcela said:

    Happy to have received this. Jimmy Carter has evolved and he’s finally said what should have been said so openly to the communities of the US and the world.

    On the equality for women by St. Paul, he leaned towards celibacy and against relations with women. Muhamad the prophet did not leave specific rules against the batter of women in the Quran, and Moses who married Sephora and had Gershon and Eliezar adored his wife. She had a lot of input and insight and he respected her for her support.

    What counts is not the past so much as what the Jimmy Carters of the world are doing to stop and prevent the abuse of women.

  • Lea Cohen said:

    Age becomes you! Bravo for the courage and the wisdom. May the Elders continue their civilizing influence on this planet… you are needed.

  • John Zee said:

    Carter. There is something wrong about a nation who would have such a man as leader and then hold and remember him with such ill respect, if not outright contempt. Most Americans either outright despise him, or at best consider him a man who was at his weakest and most foolish while he held the highest office in the land. Of everything which essentially is of the American experience, ironically one’s personal perceptions of the man Jimmy Carter has become an all too true litmus test on how much unadulterated truth they’ve voluntary been exposed to over the years and just how much concentrated complete and utter bullshit they’ve eagerly gulped down striving desperately to prove how patriotic they were.

    A great message, and I would expect no less from the man.

  • John Holt said:

    He is absolutely right in his opinion. Woman are considered subservient in many religions. Whether leaving his church will have an effect though is doubtful, sadly. But at least he spoke up for his values and principles. Not many do that these days.

  • Ben Stroud said:

    Clear, Sane, and Right..

  • David Pearson said:

    I don’t agree with his belief in God but I applaud everything else said here. Hats off to Mr Carter!

  • Randy Spydell said:

    President Carter, THANK YOU!
    I am not a Christian, nor a Jew, nor a Muslim, nor a member of any sect that worships old musty books. I consider myself a scientist, specifically a geologist. My favorite ancient, inspiring quote is this one:
    “I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with senses, reason, and intellect has intended us to forego their use.” ~ Galileo Galilei

    I believe men and women are different, but should be allowed, in fact encouraged, to pursue their own paths in life, unbridled by subservience, one to the other. We each have strengths and weaknesses, and all of us should live together encouraging each of us to rise to our best and highest potential. A benefit to all.

    God (and granite) bless you this day.

  • gabi said:

    thank you Mr.Carter.there is still Hope.

  • Peg Tumminio said:

    I have consistently admired your decisions and your hard work to do what is right. I too believe your administration was ‘torpedoed by the military’. But your wisdom, honesty, commitment to making the world a safer and better place, and your humility will assure you the right place in history. I have always viewed you as my favorite President. Thank you for all you do President Carter!

  • Kathleen Boston McCune said:

    President Carter:

    I have always admired you and have told many people you were the only totally honest President we have ever enjoyed and with your testimony about equality you have reaffirmed my estimation of not only your intelligence but your inner worth for all human beings. I learned through you that we must honor only God with our decisions and since realizing this I too have slept better but haven’t as many friends….however, those I have are also honest and secure in themselves and God’s Word in its’ truest sense of what is Right for us all.

    May God continue to bless you and those you serve.

    Kathleen Boston McCune

    PS: We met in Topeka, Kansas at the Founders Day Supper where I as Deputy Treasurer for Joan Finney was present to enjoy your fine words just after your election. Rosalyn was the honored guest at a fund raiser I assisted in hosting several months before.

  • Jean Marie Noubibou said:

    No spam

    May GOD Bless You, President Carter.

  • Rita Lee said:

    I have long admired President Carter for his missionary work, and his devotion to what is right, even when it’s not popular. It takes courage to go counter to our culture and public opinion when you are following your religious beliefs.

    Point of information: Women were never ordained by the early Catholic Church. Yes, they did serve as “deaconess”, etc., but these terms were used loosely and often interchangeably in the early Church, but never were women officially ordained. (The Mother superior of a convent could hear a sister’s “confession” as a parent listens to a child’s, to guide and correct. It was not a sacramental confession.) This is still true.

    Holy women are often consulted by popes and bishops and even honored as learned Doctors of the Church. They have equally important but different roles, just as the heart and the brain in my body are equally essential, but function differently, working together to create a healthy body. The best example of Jesus role for women in His Church is Mary. She is not a priest, or deacon, or bishop. If Jesus wanted to make any woman a priest, wouldn’t it have been his number one follower!

  • June Millington said:

    well-done!

  • Barb Howard said:

    Thank you Mr. Carter. I’ve never been so proud to say the very first time I was able to vote I was able to vote for you for president. Thanks again for showing the better side.

  • william said:

    I have often found truth,faith and belief to be two very separate things.

  • Herb Rosenbaum said:

    As always, a man of high principle !!

  • Myoungja said:

    Thank you. You gave me hope for this nation. I have always respected the president Carter.

  • Susan Baillie said:

    Thank you, President Carter. Your wisdom on this issue is greatly appreciate,d and I hope it will influence other leaders to follow suit.

  • Bruce Wood said:

    One of the truly honorable Americans of all time. Too bad many Americans have failed to see this.

  • Paddlesolo said:

    Two important events that I have read this week. The pope washed the feet of two women breaking with tradition, and Jimmy Carter has broken with his religious tradition because he believes in the equality of women. I hope that these events have a ripple effect for the equality of all women.

  • Jacqui Holloway said:

    Jimmy, I miss seeing you @ The Pink Pig in Cherry Log. I have long admired your respect for Rosalyn and giving her credit where credit is due in your successes. When I grow up I want to be just like you and Rosalyn. Hopefully will see you again @ The Carter Center.

  • Cayya Madansky said:

    I have always admired Jimmy Carter and believe he was much underrated as President.
    He is truly a man of great spiritual conviction and courage. I applaud this well written statement, and pray for him and The Elders in the work they are doing and continue to show us by example.

  • Mark West said:

    President Carter has always been a good man and way beyond his time in social consciousness. He is brave and just and what he writes in this article has brought me to tears. Men who have perpetuated this attitude should be ashamed of how their kind have treated women over the centuries and should do everything in their power to change it. I am not Christian, but I do know that Jesus taught one to love their neighbors, and fellow human, and did not specify leaving anyone out.
    Thank you, President Carter!

  • T said:

    Or he could become a Methodist rather than a Southern Baptist…of course the Methodist Church is Hillary Clinton’s and he hates Hillary Clinton.

  • Kevin Kelly said:

    God’s word does not change with the times. Despite what any man, great or small, might say.

    Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.
    -Hebrews 13:8 KJV

    yea, let God be true, but every man a liar;
    Romans 3:4

  • Allyn said:

    Thank for standing up for all of us. At a time when the world is in turmoil, I am heartened to know there are wise people taking a stand. Truly a blessing for the world.

  • Gerrit W. Sheeres said:

    Thank you, Mr. President!

  • Amelia said:

    How many women are in his group of Elders? Jimmy, you need to put your money where your mouth is, and tell us!

  • Tim said:

    What a hack. This is just warm, fuzzy rhetoric disguising his support abortion.

  • Diane said:

    Incredible! How powerful. One of the greatest of Americans.

  • Cathy said:

    I feel so honored to be able to read this from such an Godly, intelligent, loving and caring human being. Your wife is a blessed woman for being with you. Thank you for caring about those that others are so happily ready to suppress. Thank you Mr. President.

  • Barbara Rohde said:

    Thank you, President Carter, for standing up for equality and against the powerful leaders who fail women around the world.

  • Bev Corwin said:

    Thank you for the heartfelt, honest, and visionary leadership! So proud, and grateful!

  • Michael H. Atkinson said:

    The Episcopal Church welcomes you.

  • Leon Robinson said:

    When the man is right, the man is right

  • brenda harper said:

    what a man……. God Bless you President Carter!

  • Ron Massey said:

    God Bless you Jimmy Carter!!!!!!!!!

  • Marty McKinlay said:

    Good for you, President Carter. I left my church over similar circumstances and I applaud your stance. As a proud Canadian and military people, I am glad we were able to help your country out when in need. We are neighbours and friends…..

  • Nancy Brutsche said:

    So well stated. Thank you for stepping up to the plate, Jimmy!!!!

  • Steve said:

    And they elected Ronald Reagan over him.

  • Byrun Shandler said:

    Thank you President Carter for your thoughts and actions in support of equal rights for women . A blessing on you for your words .

  • orlin haynes said:

    I have always had a great respect for President Jimmy Carter and feel that the so called Christians who joined the moral majority did him a disservice in their support of Ronald Reagan. That is when the Christian right got into bed with it mistress, “The Republican Party” and out of touch with God’s purpose for the United States of America. There are many Christians in either party, but some think one needs to be A Republican to wear the badge. I am ashamed of the way that many Christians have shun God to support a macho group of corporations and rich billionaires.

  • TheBorg said:

    Well I always suspected he follows satan, and they dont allow women at Bohemian Grove…jimmy been many times, google it

  • cliff said:

    As an atheist, i must say “You Go Jimmy”. I copied this URL to family + friends, who range across the spectrum of belief/non-belief. I am on the north side of 60. That a man of your age and stature has reached this conclusion is nothing short of amazing. My vote for you in 1977 was not misplaced— wish i could do it again.

  • Marie Chinander said:

    Thank you Mr President. You eloquently stated the core of humanity.

  • Virginia Brennan said:

    Bravo President Carter. How brave but painful it is to leave one’s lifelong religion. Washington could not

    understand or tolerate your honest and plain truths.

  • Veronica said:

    I love Jimmy Carter!!! One of the top presidents of this United States!

  • Kaiser said:

    If Jimmy Carter leaves his church because he objects to one aspect of his church which is based on the bible, then can it not be said we should leave our country for the many contradictory aspects of it? Do we throw the baby out with the bath water? To me, to reject your faith based on one ‘perceived’ flaw is impulsive and immature.

    Carter himself made many critical blunders during his administration, so should we impeach him or reject him based on his decisions? If we all had this all or none mentality then we would never co-exist.

    I do believe in womens rights, and most of the posters here are women who support womens rights. However Carters premise, which I doubt was his actual words are contradictory and hypocritical. If he is to reject his church because of this, will he now reject his habitat for humanity? Where does it end, to condone one thing and reject another. Im disappointed so many liberal feminists are excited to see a man do this.

  • Roger said:

    Mr. President;

    Thank you for such words of wisdom. I’m so glad that someone such as yourself has finally stood up and publicly said what many, many people have been thinking. May God bless and watch over you and your family.

  • Val and Dave said:

    I have always thought that Jimmy Carter was a great and wise man of God and I believe that history has shown his heart to be full of love and service. His presidency was not given a fair shake and the Reagan deal to release the Iranian hostages smelled to HIGH HEAVEN!

  • Paul said:

    Pres. Carter, a true man of conviction. So proud of him!!!

  • Elinore Dobson said:

    Thank you, Pres. Carter. What’s in a name? God does not care for the many different denominations (as in a name). He sees the heart and His sheep know His voice. Mr. Pres., go wherever you can worship in good conscience and do not care about the name outside the building. Revere only The Name, the Name above all others, the only Name by which we find salvation. Stick to your guns.

  • Lorry said:

    AMEN!!! President Carter has beautifully articulated beliefs I’ve held all my life, but have kept to myself. Thank you President Carter, for showing us the monstrous elephant that has occupied the world’s living room for millennia!

  • Ken K, a Jesus man said:

    Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?

    And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel?

    And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.

    Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,

    And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty. 2 Corinthians 6:14-18

    ——————————————————————————–

  • Jon and Bobbi Lydon said:

    Thank you Mr Carter, inspirational. We are in complete agreement.

  • S. Grave said:

    Plaudits to President Carter. You are indeed to be commended for your views. I think you expressed the views of many of Americans both women and men. If anyone has a problem with your words – well, they had best examine their own conscience. We are all composed of the same elements – whether a man or woman! We all came into this world the same. Blood, heart, muscle, bone and capable of the same intellect. Thanks you Mr. President, I too am more proud of you today than I ever was.

  • B.G. Meggait said:

    This has been an issue for me all my life…the attitude of men toward women (and I am now 85 years old). My father referred to his son as “son and heir” and to his daughters as “dishwashers”. This started me on a life-long quest as to why the differentiation. I don’t equate it with my faith. I see in Jesus, a man who loved and accepted women. My faith is important to me. Do I see this gender inequality in the market place? Yes. Do I see it in the church? Yes.
    Does this stop me from loving men? No. Does it stop me loving God? No. Does it stop me from loving church? No. Do I wish attitudes to change? Yes. Bravo, Jimmy Carter.We need men who see our worth and know that we have valuable knowledge and wisdom.

  • Joanne Luneau said:

    Thank you for all you have to better the lives of so many.

  • Nancy said:

    Dear Mr. President, Thank you for stating your view on the subject of women’s inequality so eloquently. You have often been ridiculed for your positions on various issues but time has always proved you correct in your observations! Many of us have broken away from organized religion because we have seen and felt the injustices of discrimination time and time again. I wish all women the world over could read this. If every woman would just stop supporting the male dominated farces called religion, their power would diminish quickly.

  • Peggy Zimmerman said:

    Well done, President Carter. It is inspiring to see a man of your stature take a position in support of women. Bravo!

  • Michael said:

    Dear President Carter,

    Thank you for the heart-felt words expressing you sincere beliefs. You have always been a courageous man and an example to all people of how to live a life committed to personal ideals. Thank you for your continuing leadership and willingness to take action.

    Sincerely,
    - Michael Sojka

  • Jim said:

    Namaste

  • DJ said:

    President Carter’s revisionist thesis seems to be that, in their continued subjugation of women, male religious leaders have, for two thousand years, been misinterpreting God’s words.

    Oh, I see. God didn’t MEAN it when he started ordering men to take women as sex slaves (Exodus 21:2-6 NLT). We just got the wrong end of the stick.

    There we were thinking God wanted us to humiliate chicks, or sacrifice children (Genesis 22:1-18), or wipe out whole nations (Zephaniah 3:6-10), when all along he actually meant…the opposite.

    Jeez…how did we miss that!?

    But if God is all-powerful, couldn’t he have expressed himself more clearly and left a little less room for interpretation?

    For instance, in Judges 21, God commands the murder of all the people of Jabesh-gilead, except for the virgin girls who are taken to be forcibly raped and married. When they want more virgins, God tells them to hide alongside the road and when they see a girl they like, kidnap and forcibly rape her and take her for a wife!

    I don’t see much room for interpretation there. So take the next step Jimmy and recognize The Bible for what it is…a creaky narrative cobbled together by Iron Age patriarchal religious maniacs.

  • Kristopher Loviska said:

    Kudos to you Mr. President. I often wonder how good people insist holding on to their faith against such thoughts/practices/teachings that seem to fly in the face of what is right in terms of how to treat people.

  • Robyn Shackelford said:

    President Carter is a gentleman, thinker and a visionary. I am so grateful his strong voice is still heard in a world where thinking and vision are respected rarely.

  • Susan Wooldridge said:

    I’ve always believed that President Carter was a good man. Today I’m positive of it. Thank you President Carter for your words. I have hope they will cause many people to re-think their positions on womens places in our society.

  • Will Hendrick said:

    Spirit Bless You President Carter! Tremendous words! I am truly inspired!

  • Rain said:

    This actually made me cry. He has stated so much truth, so much that needs to be addressed, and I can just see so many after reading his words, making hateful remarks, saying he doesn’t know what he is speaking about.
    So many things have come about and strides made because of the works of women, their studies, sacrifices, and guidance. Sadly, many will never admit this because of how twisted religion has played a part in trying to keep women down. I hope there will come a day where wrath is brought upon the men who knowingly hurt and abused women and girls and did it under the guise of religion.

  • Rebecca McCormick said:

    This may well become President Carter’s defining legacy. And for this, I am grateful.

  • Kathy LaLota said:

    Thank you!

  • Roger Ellison said:

    I am so proud of President Carter. This is on target. We Christians have really made a mess, but, alas, clearly so many other faiths perpetuate the crime. There is nothing that Jesus ever said or did that should lead a person to subordinate another human being, or, in particular, women. Notice his gentle way of stating his position without malice. I am so proud of President Carter.

  • Cliff Williams said:

    Loved this. Jimmy Carter is one of my heroes.

  • Peter said:

    Very proud of this man today!

  • Alison said:

    This is a perfect example of why President Carter remains, to this day, the President & leader who I aspire to emulate in terms of moral values, dignity, kindness, humility and life purpose. He has impacted my life and my character development more than he could ever know.

  • Stephen Moore said:

    This is an interesting read, but it’s also a sad one. The Christianity that Mr Carter is “losing” is not an orthodox one. The Bible is clear right from the start that men and women are completely equal, both made in the image of God. There are differing roles at times, which is seen pretty clearly in Jesus’ ministry, as well as other Holy-Spirit-inspired letters. Nonetheless, the Bible is quite clear that men and women share complete equality.
    Sinful people can be jerks, but let’s not let the mistakes of a few church “leaders” define Christianity for us.

  • John Coleman said:

    Mr. Jimmy Carter, Please know that I am one of the many who can feel your devotion to the caring for and uplifting of humanity. I want to say Good Bless You and it’s evident He already has. Thank you.

  • Marilyn Wilson said:

    Thank you President Carter. What a wonderful letter to humanity. Always have admired you and your beautiful wife. We need more like you. God’s blessings.
    MRW – MN

  • Fran Johns said:

    Thank you, President Carter, for your continued leadership and courage in speaking out for what is right and just.

  • Bill Stringer said:

    Remember that a key principle of his Presidency was supporting Human Rights around the world? I always felt we were foolish not to give this man a second term in which to accomplish some real progress. I remember those press conferences in which you could actually understand and follow his thoughts. A true “Great Communicator”. He has had the best post-Presidency of any in my lifetime. This might just be the most important statement of his career. But it should come as no surprise. Remember the value he placed on hearing what Rosalyn had to say?

  • Linda Smith Neff said:

    Thank you, President Carter.

  • CHIEF SONNE REYNA said:

    I honor the wisdom of President Jimmy Carter. His courageous statements of truth help people to realize that women are a sacred natural balance in the natural world. I respect and honor all religions, I am Ordained Interfaith Minister. As Native American Spiritual Leader, I observe Natures alpha principles empower women to conceive and birth children and guide them to responsibility together with their fathers. In global native culture women are celebrated leaders and seers. When all the religions have come and gone, women will still here to help guide us with love and compassion. Divine Spirit lives in all women, children, men and all creation. With respect for all religions, women will continue to lead humankind to a kinder and more conscious global culture. We the men are destined to support and defend them. Peace is coming, peace is coming, peace is coming. Be the Living Peace and Respect and Honor all Women.

  • Jack and Betty Cook said:

    We agree with a whole heart. Thank You, President Carter for your
    COURAGE AND FORTITUDE for standing up to the ministries of hate.

  • Tom Moore said:

    Thank you President Carter. I to left the southern baptist convention.I have became a Methodist, partly because of there mission indevers and women can hold leadership possission in the church. Action speak louder than words.

  • Barb said:

    I am sorry that you had to leave a church you have put so much of your life, love and energy into but I am thankful that you made this choice. You have always been someone I admired and looked up to and this just adds another reason for why I feel that way. This give me hope and courage as I know it must give to so many around the world. On this Easter afternoon, I see hope and resurrection!

  • dmumma said:

    Sir, You were NEVER my fave POTUS. But your continued work on human, and particularly female human rights have made me proud of you! I am SO sorry that you felt you had to leave your Church, but as one of the Nation’s elders, You make me proud that God has such warriors as You! May God continue to bless you and keep you!

  • Jeanne Kennedy said:

    I’ve always respected this gentle man. This is an amazing statement. Maybe his next venture is a Peace Corps to end the violence and discrimination against women.

  • rob said:

    So, does this mean he has been a religious bigot or an idiot the last sixty years? It is interesting the choice of words used against complimentarianism, which has been a part of the SBC throughout its history.

  • Andrea Blanchard said:

    President Carter, thank you for taking the path you have chosen to follow your personal convictions. As a Catholic I was disappointed that our new Pope Francis was met with disaproval for washing the feet of two women on Holy Thursday because it was supposed to signify the washing of his 12 apostles’ feet,who were all male. He was very brave in breaking with “tradition” and I respect him for it. I can only imagine the hurt you felt when you made the difficult decision to sever your ties with the Southern Baptist Convention.I had the pleasure of meeting you at one of our local apple houses here in Ellijay. When you make it back to Walnut Mountain would love to have the opportunity to thank you in person.God Bless.

  • John Gearin said:

    A good man.

  • Mary Anne Andrews said:

    President Carter, I’ve been a huge fan ever since voting for you all those years ago, but you’ve outdone yourself in my admiration with these profound, insightful words. I know it took a lot of soul-searching to come to your current mindset and, having broken with my former religion due to these exact reasons almost 40 years ago, I know how hard it is to take this step. What I’ve come to understand is that it’s not the label you wear or the discriminatory rules you follow that make you a worthy person, it’s your relationship with humanity and all living things, all created by whatever higher power you choose to designate. The Golden Rule, treating others as you wish to be treated, is long overdue where women are concerned. Thank you for recognizing my humanity.

  • Paedra said:

    President Carter,

    They say that making a change from what was a comfortable place is the greatest sign of bravery. In doing this you have shown the path of wisdom which others can only but follow. Your speaking from the humble place of wisdom show a light to all.

    Thank you

    Paedra

  • Amancio Gonzalez said:

    I believe that President Carter was denied, by the majority of his fellow Americans, a second term as president of the United States because he is truly great. History shows that many of the greatest men have being condemned by the ignorant majority. Think of Socrates, Jesus Christ, etc. I have always felt profound admiration for President Carter, primarily for his good ethics and commitment to help the “majority” of mankind. This article demonstrates no less of his commitment.

  • Colleen Lemon said:

    I have read many of Jimmy Carter’s books. He does not believe in
    Fundamental Religions that have men hold power of woman. He is also
    a remarkable Humanitarian@

  • Franciska Issaka said:

    Thank you President Carter. We need more voices like yours on the side of girls and women and I am grateful that you are speaking out like this. It is a shame that the so called cradles of democracy (Uk, European countries and the USA) are all retrogressing. The developing countries are watching and copying you. When countries like the USA refuse to sign and implement important UN Conventions and Agreements, it is a license for Developing countries to apply resources given for gender equality and other things. Thank you again for speaking out so loudly. i

  • Tracy said:

    This man has amazed me time and time again over the years. He is not only an American but also defines what it takes to be a citizen of the world. He is most welcomed in Canada anytime.

  • Judith Cole said:

    What a wonderful thing it was when our beloved Mattie JT Stapanek
    chose President Carter to help him on his short lived but hard
    fought struggle for peace and fairness. Mattie through President
    Carter enabled people around the world to hear his message. The
    President was a man who was ahead of his time

  • Elaine Marston said:

    Thank you President Carter! We have always told our daughter that she could be whatever she wants to be if she worked hard enough. She is currently serving as an Associate Pastor and will be fully ordained in the United Methodist Church in a little over a year from now. All our daughters and the daughters of all nations should have the opportunity to realize their full potential. Keep up the good work!

  • Emil E Sattler said:

    As one of the most intelligent and truly decent human beings I have known of, President Carter speaks words we should all heed.

  • It’s Time for Equality | Reflections said:

    [...] recently read this well written essay by former President Jimmy Carter wherein he explains his departure from the Baptist church due [...]

  • Carolyn Hardt said:

    Truly, a very intelligent man! Wonderful article!

  • Frances Moore said:

    Thank you President Carter. May God continue to use your love for Him and for all of us to His glory.

  • Eileen Renno said:

    Dear President Carter,
    Your supportive words enlighten and encourage us all. I am comforted and reassured by your companionship. I am ever inspired by your devotion to truth and justice. Thank you. Namaste.
    Eileen Renno

  • Marvin Reed said:

    Thoughtful and courageous, Mr. President! Good for you! Good for America!

  • Sharon said:

    Well said. What took you so long….?

  • Sally Weare said:

    Halleluja! President Carter speaks so eloquently. I hope his wonderful gesture will challenge other powerful males to heed and to take action. Change is necessary!!

  • Hildyburns said:

    Quality for all. Thank you.

  • Hildyburns said:

    Equality for all. Thank you.

  • Alice Williams said:

    Thank you, President Carter. You have my utmost respect and gratitude for standing up for your principles. Thank you for all the contributions you have made to society and to the world.

  • Raul G said:

    Well said. Not only is organized religion responsible for limiting women’s rights but also for the many inequities, abuses and exploitation of men throughout history. Witness the Inquisition, the appalling lack of action of the Vatican during the Holocaust, the many religious wars in Europe and Islam.

  • Nancy Crowley said:

    President Carter:
    You are such a courageous man. I have such respect for all you have done, and tried to do for the world in your lifetime. You Rock!

  • Nancy Crowley said:

    President Carter:
    You are such a courageous man. I have immense respect for all you have done, and tried to do for the world in your lifetime. You Rock!

  • Nancy Crowley said:

    President Carter:
    You are such a courageous man. I have immense respect for all you have done, and tried to do for the world. You Rock!

  • Nancy Crowley said:

    President Carter:
    You are such a courageous man. I have immense respect for all you have done, and have tried to do for the world.

  • Rebecca Rice said:

    The first president I voted for and always a favorite. I have always had deep respect for him and that respect has grown as I have aged. I have never had more respect for him than I have now. You rock President Carter!! Better than all the rest.

  • Murphy Cutler said:

    It is so wonderful to hear this type of comment from a powerful, wonderful man. Thank you, President Carter!

  • Sydney Brooks said:

    I have respected Mr. Carter for many years. I believe it started, for me, when he stood in front of the world and did not drink alcohol during State dinners. A very brave act contrary to the social norm. Ha also did not prevent any one else from drinking. He has always been a man of ethics and integrity. He has expanded all of our collective knowledge on Human Rights. Can we just clone him?

  • Brent Christensen said:

    I know his pain ~ I too had to leave a different Cult (in which I was born and raised) to make peace with my inner turmoil at many discrepancies, inhumanities and misappropriations of ‘holy’ power expressed toward ‘outsiders’, within the confines of their dogmas!!

  • Linda Donaldson said:

    He expresses how I felt and fell when I left the Catholic church years ago because it excluded me and half, or in the seventies, 51.3 % of the population. I have never stopped admiring President Jimmy Carter and still think one of the best things I ever did was be a national delegate for him at the Democratic convention way back and work on his campaign in MN. i have always thought and still think he is the best president the US has had, smart, hard working, honest and always true to his principles as is and has been Rosalyn.

  • Martha Heubach said:

    A great statesman, humanitarian and genuinely kind and generous person. Miss Lillian raised a wonderful son.
    Thank you for leading – again!

  • Michael James Schram said:

    Thank you, Mr. President. I’ve loved your eloquent and well articulated comments and mindset. Admired your leadership. Your post presidential period has been exemplary. A member of the Carter Center for years,having lived in Atlanta for five and a half years, I’ve also – with my late older brother – visited The Jimmy Carter Library and Museum. Your Legacy is large now and well into American and Global History. God bless, Mr President.

  • ed lazarus said:

    I am one of those who has deeply resented the efforts, over the years, to portray Mr. Carter as “one of our worst presidents!”
    It has given the right wingers something to lie about….as though they weren’t already past being liars and have settled in comfortably as “stinking, rotten liars!”
    He has devoted living his life in service to his fellow citizen….a more decent man would be difficult to find….and his decision to sever ties to his church for the reasons he indicated simply proves his worth as a human being.

  • Mary Smith said:

    God bless Jimmy Carter. I have more respect for him than any politician I know. I pray I can keep an opened mind as he has kept.( Does that sentence make sense? ) I hope to continue to learn and grow as he has.

  • Oolagram said:

    I only wish he spoke up for the millions of unborn women his party has supported in taking away the most fundamental right -THE RIGHT TO LIVE!

  • Erin said:

    I find Jimmy Carter to be one of the most post presidents that we have had. I am so proud he is a former president of the US. What a wonderful example in the way he has promoted peace, and human dignity. Thank you to Jimmy Carter, for standing up for women. I to have always been proud of you. You set the bar high. We are blessed to have you.

  • Celia Whitten said:

    Once again, Jimmy Carter had had the courage to stick out his neck and say the things that others have not had the courage to say. Thank you, President Carter, for taking such a stand to help women worldwide and to let men know that they do not have to continue to believe the dogma that they have been taught over the generations. That kind of thinking is outdated and wrong and, in the end, helps no one. Thank you, Mr. President, for standing up for the right thing and for giving others permission to follow in your footsteps. I think you will be shown to have been one of our best presidents, and I am proud to have voted for you. Peace to you in your journeys.

  • roxan lucan said:

    Women have waited 5000 years to hear a man say this. Mr. Carter you are a true saint. It’s about time women got out of the back of thee religious bus. And time women stood up for themselves.

  • Eli Hess said:

    What a good man Jimmy Carter is. Just Thoroughly good. Thank you Mr. President for continuing to lead us.

  • Dan Grady said:

    President Carter, will you come be the prime minister of Canada please?

  • Dan Sutton said:

    I note one comment that pointed out that the military torpedoed President Carter. It should be obvious that it is those same men in the military and elsewhere who are holding on so tenaciously to their power. If any group of men finds it necessary to shout down the rights of women, a flashing lamp ought to appear in the minds of everyone else: Do not listen to them. I am a man who is so often ashamed of the stances other men take to subjugate women or to discriminate against them. President Carter has taken a personal step that should be seen by everyone as a message of hope.

  • Genie said:

    It takes guts to stand up for what you know in your heart to be the truth. Friends disappear and you sometimes stand alone.

    The next issue to address is the position of animals. How justified are we to treat them as we do?

  • Oma said:

    I noticed all the remarks are by women ?????

  • Grandma Becky said:

    Well said Jimmy Carter. However, I don’t agree that you lost your religion – you just shed a man-made institution – not God or Jesus Christ. You have my respect and appreciation.

  • Liesl said:

    I love this man.

  • Geena said:

    President Carter is a world treasure. He has committed his life to service for the greater good rather than just talking about it in sound bites. He is a man of his word and a shining example of how to live with integrity, compassion, and strength. The work he has done since his presidency blows all others who have held the office out of the room and down the street yet he is thoughtful, wise and humble.

    Thank you, Sir for your service and your passion for humanity which includes equally men and women the world over. You rock Sir.

  • Ann Elsbach said:

    I remember when I voted for Jimmy in 1976. I thought he was wonderful then and I think he is even more a state of the art human being now. He has compassion and is unfraid to say what he thinks. The work that he has done in the world, including with Habitat for Humanity, is filled with love and a willingness to do whatever it takes to get the job done. He gets out there with a hammer in his 80s!I honor and respect Jimmy more than any other president past or present, with the possible exception of Lincoln. Thank you, Jimmy, for all that you have done. I wish that I could have met you in person. At least our daughter did; she was working on the same Habitat building as he in Georgia one year. :-)

  • Jill Neimeyer said:

    Jimmy Carter is one of my heroes. This is just another example of why I am so delighted by who he is, and for the things that he stands for. I wish more men and women had the courage and guts to stand up to injustices in our world. Thank you President Carter!

  • gail Boshell said:

    Amen! Thank you, Mr. Carter for speaking the truth about religions, I have thought this for years, but didn’t have the eloquent words that you possess & put together so well. The truth shall set you free!Women will never have the same rights as men in this country, or any other country, as long as companies are allow to pay women less money than men, while doing the same work. Religions recognize this principle, the more money you have the more power. But if people would read the New Testament they would see that if women of wealth & power had not supported Christianity it wouldn’t survived. In my opinion, the Christian Churches that I have attended don’t teach the New Testament, they teach the Old Testament. I think the reason for that is b/c it is easier to teach 10 rules, than to teach, love your neighbor as yourself.

  • Joey Aldern said:

    Too bad political leaders are too intimidated to challenge justice for women until after they don’t have to worry about running for office.

  • Loredana said:

    Thank you, Mr. President, for being You, in everything you do and say!

  • Pam Farmer said:

    These are inspirational words ….are there any business leaders out there in any country willing to make this happen?

  • Amy G Koss said:

    Thank you, President Carter, from me, my daughters, and my daughter’s daughters.

  • Becky said:

    He actually severed his ties in 2000 and wrote the above in 2009. Interesting that it is in the news again….Kudos to him then and now!

  • Pina Delfin Lim said:

    EQUALITY BETWEEN MEN AND WOMEN

    This is peculiar to the teachings of BAHA’O'LLAH. Former religious systems placed men above women. Daughters and sons must follow the same form of study and acquire a uniform education. One course of education promotes unity among mankind.

    (Abdu’l-Baha, Divine Philosophy, p. 26)

  • Jean Kloss said:

    Goodness, mercy and justice combined, is what God created us to live out in all of our life. In family, community and church, true religion helps us unlock all slavery, economic, racial, sexual and national. Thank you, President Carter, for unlocking another door to freedom and peace among all people. My current pulpit has a large, heavy key to unlock all such barriers to life in God’s love.
    Peace, Pastor Jean Cowdery Kloss

  • Frank Russell said:

    He wouldn’t stand up to the Soviets or the Muslim radicals in Iran, but thank God Carter is standing up to the Baptists. I’m not a Baptist but I know enough about Southern Baptists to know that they don’t view women as inferior nor do they favor denying health care to women. Linking their theology to “slavery, violence, forced prostitution, genital mutilation and national laws that omit rape as a crime” is pure drivel. This to me is just another attempt by a one term president to salvage his legacy and make himself relevant again.

  • Christina Solstad said:

    What a thought-provoking, brilliant, and beautifully stated letter on a crucial matter. I have such deep respect for you, Mr Carter. Keep up the excellent work.

  • Viktor said:

    Admirable man, but one step short of realising that women rights, slavery, timid acquiescence to oppressive rulers, genocides, unscientific claims, etc. are all integral part of religion, he and other elders trying to salvage…
    The problem is not HOW you interpret religion (there are any ways you want to), but a religion itself! As long as it believed to be true – the problems will persist…
    P.s. Misleading title of the article(no surprise here…), Jimmy Carter did not lose neither belief in god/s, nor religion, he just severed ties with his denomination. Plenty more available to choose from, or in the worse case – can start his own, and I’m sure there will be lots of followers.

  • Reading of Jimmy Carter’s “Losing my religion for equality” | Alisha's Blog said:

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  • John Johnson said:

    Mr. Carter, angry with his own faith tradtion, marches all religions off the same cliff, as if they are all equally culpable for egregious acts, e.g., mutilations, forced marriage, etc. Of course, there are abused women and other victims of men claiming this or that religious sanction. But Mr. Carter never seems to put the two foot wide roller aside as he paints this vivid but completely unnuanced portrayal of the relationship of women to religion. This is just poor editorializing, really a screed. He ratchets up the rhetoric to help buttress this oft times skewed portrayal. He also makes some very obvious false claims about the early church:

    “I am also familiar with vivid descriptions in the same Scriptures in which women are revered as pre-eminent leaders. During the years of the early Christian church women served as deacons, priests, bishops, apostles, teachers and prophets. It wasn’t until the fourth century that dominant Christian leaders, all men, twisted and distorted Holy Scriptures to perpetuate their ascendant positions within the religious hierarchy.”

    Mr. Carter, please name one female bishop or priest. There are none. Which of the twelve apostles was a woman? Again, zero. What is he talking about here, unless “apostle” is like the modern day radio preachers who call themselves prophets, healers, apostles and anything else they care to call themselves. This is just shameless on Mr. Carter’s part and displays a woeful incoherence of Church history.

    Just ignorant or willfully dismissive of the facts is Mr. Carter. Of course, never let the facts get in the way of a good argument. Spoken as a true person of the left. Mr. Carter, you are not standing on any solid footing here. Your credibility is hereby sorely wounded, if you really still have any.

  • Jocelyn Dorado said:

    Jimmy Carter’s action to severe his religious affiliation is an affirmation of John Lennon’s Imagine, “…and no religion, too.”

  • Wilma broer said:

    This is why i left the church. I grew up in a christian community, where i was treated like a second class citizen. I dint know why wo many women still allow themselves to be brainwashed.

  • Wilma broer said:

    Correction – don’t

  • Jim Frost said:

    I commend Jimmy Carter on this action and statement. His significant role in leadership, adds power and strength to his commens. It is time to speak and lead, and Jimmy Carter is doing both!

  • Shirley Lindley said:

    I have come to the conclusion over the years that Jimmy Carter has been one of the most underrated ex-President we have ever had. He continues to amaze me with his generous acts of service to humanity and courage by speaking up on relevant human rights issues of our time. I admire him greatly and would like him to know how much I appreciate him and his wife for all their hard work and integrity over the years. In their quiet and humble way, they have truly made a difference for countless Americans. As a couple, they have never been flashy or particularly “fashionable”…but they are the “real deal” for certain.

  • Dianne said:

    What a man of integrity. He lives his religion through his actions and deeds , which is what Christ intended. Here is a man who truly does unto others as he would have them do unto him. True religion is not about dogma and rituals, it is who we are and how we live our lives day by day.

  • Lea Austen said:

    Mr. President, thank you so much for speaking your beliefs about scripture and the churches positions, etc., on women and children.

    In the last half of the 20th century and forward there have been (and still are) many women and men scholars who have offered learned, inclusive interpretations of the creation story and other parts of scripture that when read “traditionally” are not inclusive. If the church could embrace some of this scholarship for interpreting biblical and other sacred texts, you may not have had to leave the Convention.

    You are a brave, learned, and spiritual man. I love hearing what you have to say on anything.

    Thank you.

  • Sarah said:

    This is a man of faith and reason, so wonderful to have him out there showing both when so many in our government have neither.
    AND The blessings from Roger Butler above are beautifully given.

  • Aneesh Kumar said:

    What a wonderful article! I am proud of President Carter.

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  • Tasi said:

    “The truth is that male religious leaders have had – and still have – an option to interpret holy teachings either to exalt or subjugate women. They have, for their own selfish ends, overwhelmingly chosen the latter”

    It is wrong to assume that any interpretation of holy texts that leads to sexism is “for [religious leaders'] selfish ends.” I’m sure many of those leaders merely aim to faithfully transmit the content of said holy texts in a way that is accurate and true to the intentions of the person(s)/deities who wrote it. Meaning that sexism is intrinsic to the religion itself, and not necessarily any malignant intentions from male figures.

    Also, while I agree that there are very pressing issues that concern female rights in the world, I balk at Carter’s grasp of the nature of women’s rights-issues.

    Gender inequality is NOT only a product of discrimination. It is also locked into societal norms and constructions that are present in both sexes, all genders. In other words, reaching out to change things requires not only that we convince men not to discriminate, but also that we change how women think of themselves. Women perpetuate their own positions in society at a level comparable to that imposed upon them by discrimination.

    Our understanding of humans has moved beyond a simple oppressor-oppressed dichotomy. The power struggle is all around and within each of us.

  • David Crump said:

    I share what others have responded. I have huge respect for Jimmy Carter; he is an amazing example in the commitments and work he has engaged after his presidency. Thank you for sharing this article!

  • DP said:

    I wish he had this attitude when he decided to support the Mujahadeen in Afghanistan to try to over through the Soviet backed government which actually sought to improved women’s rights. Gloria Steinham was a CIA operative at the time, and asked Zibignew Brzezinski why Carter was doing this. His response was it was a matter of national security.

    Cater and Brzezinski knew he they setting the trap so the Soviets would invade Afghanistan, the results were destroying the country, creation of the Taliban who enslaved of millions of women, as well as 9/11, and the current US Afghanistan war.

  • Lisa Taylor said:

    Thank you, President Carter. Let’s hope other leaders around the world will support you.

  • barbara daykin said:

    Mr President having just read your words I am so grateful to you for your support for the female cause. As one who lives over ‘the pond’ and a member of the Church of England I hope and pray all those in’my’ church open up to these thoughts and we become free to worship as equals in the church.

  • Ellie Nowels said:

    Thank you, Mr. Carter. This was a difficult decision for you. I hope the world is listening and will take heed.

  • Kate Forsyth said:

    Thank you Mr. Carter and the Elders for your courage and wisdom. I’ve lived with levels of predjudice because I’m female alll my life from birth to now age 48. I’ve been exhalted when I measured up to beauty and deference and denied equal pay and respect for those same qualities. Now I find my irrelevance is increasing with age beyond my roles as mother and wife. Like all women I’ve become somewhat invisible to society. No longer useful as my youth fades and thus my beauty. But there’s a fire in my heart that burns for my daughter to fight these old precepts where I can. That includes not shutting up about the raise and promotion I deserve and have been denied. Speaking truthfully about injustice to women and minorities even when it’s uncomfortable. It costs me dearly sometimes. But I find my heart can rest in God when I face oppressors.

  • Lenda Dean said:

    I have always been an admirer of Jimmy Carter and his wife Roslyn, never more so than watching their efforts to do things like eradicate guinea worm in Africa…their travels for peace…and their efforts for the disenfranchised: they exemplify the type of Christian I aspire to be!

  • Samatva Peace said:

    Bless you, Jimmy Carter. My respect for you continue to grow.

  • Barbara Trudeau said:

    I am heartened by President Carter’s words and by the courage he shows in speaking out. I would also like to hear Mrs. Carter’s thoughts on this topic. I have always been struck by the fact that we do not hear from her or from Amy Carter, though they have, of course, the right to their privacy.

  • Charlotte B. Nelson said:

    Well said, President Carter. All women and men – in all faiths – in this country and around the world – should thank you.

    I disagree with an earlier comment: it is not that he took too long to sever his ties with the Southern Baptist Convention. It is the latest ruling by the denomination rhat so specifically discriminates, and distorts the Biblical message, that he cannot accept.

  • Kerrie Riggs said:

    Thank you for being bold in sharing your wisdom, for stepping out and speaking past all the political and religious traditions and doctrine. Thank you for speaking truth. God’s riches blessings on you and your family.

  • joybehi said:

    Thank you President Carter!
    I am a Baha’i and would like to share a quote from our Writings:
    “The world of humanity is possessed of two wings: the male and the female. So long as these two wings are not equivalent in strength, the bird will not fly. Until womankind reaches the same degree as man, until she enjoys the same arena of activity, extraordinary attainment for humanity will not be realized; humanity cannot wing its way to heights of real attainment. When the two wings . . . become equivalent in strength, enjoying the same prerogatives, the flight of man will be exceedingly lofty and extraordinary.”

  • Ellen said:

    Women around the world thank you.

  • Christa said:

    I was in Taiwan when Carter abruptly derecognized it and recognized mainland China. It was very badly handled and had I been in a less civilized country I’d be dead. Until today, I have had no respect for Carter. This is redemptive and I acknowledge that this is a good thing he has done.

  • Mesa Winter said:

    President Carter, you have been my favorite President beginning with your desire to ride in a Volkswagon for your inaugural procession. I have little trust in politics but I know one man as President whom I do trust. Thank you for being the exception and bless you.

  • Karen Bomba said:

    Very well said. I hope that it starts a new dialogue of constructive discussions around the globe.

  • chris enger said:

    It takes a true christian soul to put justice above affiliation.

  • Ralph Catts said:

    It takes courage and conviction to stand up and be counted when it means going against what you have held close for all your adult life. Even if it is the blooming obvious (equality that is and the failure of establishment churches) it is still great to see this statement.

    Those who still cling to bible texts taken out of context to justify the subjugation of women need to remember that the Hebrew society of the time denied women access to education, and stoned women to death who had been raped. In other words, it was on a par with the worst excesses of the Taliban today, and is as far removed from liberal Islam as is modern Jewish faith from the era of 2000 years ago.

    What is truly remarkable about Jesus is that he taught equality for all people at a time when it was far from accepted in society. Jimmy Carter has done well, but think just how more remarkable and disturbing was the message of Jesus in the context of his time.

  • Donna Morey said:

    Jimmy Carter has concisely put into words my major complaint about established religion: its treatment and exclusion of all who aren’t in their private club- based on sex and sexual orientation, age, ethnicity, and religious afilition. While it is true we need more sensible world leaders like Jimmy Carter and Nelson Mandela, we foremost require average men and women to reject these harmful establishments and their “traditions” and create a world where everyone has equality. Educating girls and women is just the first step.

  • Anita Schmitz said:

    My respect for Jimmy Carter has been increased many times over. If only all would think that way! What a wonderful world it would be.

  • Susan Higgins said:

    Thank you President Carter for your service to humanity. God bless you.

    Yesterday at my church’s Easter service my priest made comment that the risen Christ revealed himself first to the women who loved him, and that the men they told would not accept their word. The priest remarked that at the time of Christ, a woman’s testimony was considered unreliable, and not acceptable as evidence in a court of law. Context is essential to the interpretation of scripture.
    Traditions can take a long time to change, and granted, institutions should take care not to lose the essence of faith and religious practice when instituting change. But they should move forward. I am a Canadian Anglican (Episcopal in the US). My priest is a woman. I have known many fine male priests as well. But I could not belong to a church that did not allow women in leadership roles.

  • DeeDee Kornman said:

    How difficult this must have been for President Carter to do, and yet impossible for such an honorable man not to do it. Deeply moving to see someone acting with such commitment to principles.

  • Beth said:

    Well said and Amen, Jimmy. I have been waiting for years for the rational Christian leader to speak up and denounce the hypocrisy and radicalization of Scripture by so-called Christians who bear no resemblance to the teachings of Jesus.

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  • Schumann said:

    Thank you Jimmy Carter for confirming and endorsing the key decision for many who have accepted the Baha’i faith as the Gospel for this age.

  • Ijedimma B Oparah said:

    “Dear President Carter, Your demonstrated position inspires all men who have achieved originality and creativity in their thinking to take action now. Thank you, Mr. President, for your continued leadership in promoting human rights in our world.”

  • Barbara said:

    I have always loved and admired Jimmy Carter. He was the first President to graduate from the Naval Academy! He has faith in God and respect for women. He comes from a very spiritual southern family.
    Thank you Jimmy Carter for having the conviction to go with your gut on women’s rights and the role of women in society and religion.
    You are a true gem of a man!

  • George Akmentins said:

    President Carter, didn;t care for you as pres. but you are a great human being full of understanding and compassion and I trully beleive that women are equal to men and should be treated as such

  • Jenneffer Sixkiller said:

    Thank you, President Carter, for following your heart and speaking out for truth. As a girl growing up in the USA, I was told by my family that I was smart and could be anything I wanted to be. After serving with the Peace Corps in the Republic of South Africa, I found many girls and women who did not have great self worth. I also see this in many other women in the USA, now that I am grown and understand gender bias. You have encouraged me to be more courageous to stand up for women’s equality in all arenas of my life.

  • Mary Truly said:

    I thank God for the beautiful, loving and wise person of Jimmy Carter.

  • Bobbie Phillips said:

    Jimmy Carter is an incredible human example of rising above and living by truth and spirit rather than ego. I have admired him for a long time for his humanitarian efforts. His decision, surely a tough personal decision. He rises above human shackles and is committed to challenge injustice. Living by the truth of spirit and LOVE. <3

  • Ven. Ajahn David Chutiko said:

    The wisdom and courage of a true Elder. However I am not at all surprised by these words or the courage expressed by President Carter in this powerful article. If my memory serves me correctly,neither have rarely if ever been absent from his pronouncements. His compassion and unconditional love for ALL of humanity are the foundation upon which he has based all of his efforts. Thank you, President and Mrs. Carter for the example you give to us all.

  • Jessica said:

    Thank you, President Carter.
    You walk your talk.
    Wishing you love and peace.

  • Eileen McBride said:

    President Carter has always been the voice of compassion, intelligence, wisdom and justice in our world. What a gift he has been to people everywhere. History will surely remember him as the great man he is.
    God bless you, Mr. President. We are forever in your debt.

  • Kathleen S Martin said:

    President Carter,

    Thank you for speeaking so elequently for equality. You have always been a leader who stands for principle first.

  • Deni said:

    President Carter has long been mocked and diminished by those who could not stand an honest man in the White House! However, he had and will always have my respect for the great humanitarian that he has always been. I, too have severed ties with my church for many reasons. My faith in God remains strong and firm. My faith in religion, not any more.

  • candy tutt said:

    President Carter, to me, was one of the presidents who spoke plainly and sincerely; his intentions were always honorable and he acted with tremendous integrity. Jimmy was the ‘real deal’ and I have always been proud that I voted for him. Still proud of him!

  • Phil Gallery said:

    While I share President Cater’s view, as we work for a more equitable world we should keep in mind Chesterton’s words concerning some of the social reformers of his day, “My objective is the destruction of all tyrannies against womanhood. Their objective is the destruction of womanhood.”
    P.S. President Carter: Cdr. Colgrove was my physics professor at the Academy. Will likely see Joy later this month in Annapolis.

  • Pat Tibbs said:

    He is one of the wisest, most principled men I have ever met.

  • concerned citizen said:

    Right on! well said, so proud of you, Jimmy Carter.

    It is time for the Bible to be re-interpreted, as he said it has been carefully manipulated, yes, if it were an egalitarian bible, it would benefit the whole world.

  • S P Gillespie said:

    You are a brave, honest and thoughtful man, Mr. President.

    History will honor you for all your many years of public service. This carefully-wrought statement will stand out in the decades, hopefully centuries, to come for advancing a just cause.

  • Wendy McCarvell said:

    God Bless Jimmy Carter. He always did what he thought was the right way – which usually was not the easiest way.

  • Charles E Pike said:

    I was proud when I voted for you, and I still am proud to support you.

  • kay krizek said:

    What a pleasure to read President Carter’s comments on women’s equality in all things! It was a great, positive way to start my week on this beautiful spring day!

  • Denise said:

    Many attribute the Apostle Paul as forbidding woment to speak in the church. However the devil is still a liar. What he really said was: “It is writen or you may have heard that it is shameful for a woman to speak in the assembly but c’mon brothers let us reason together. There were 120 men along with the women in that upper room on the day of Pentecost and the very same Holy Ghost that fell on the men fell on the women likewise. Now if the holy spirit shows no destinction between male and female who are we to try and hush them upby denying them to operate under the power given to them by God? He went on further to say that in Christ Jesus there is no Jew or Greek, no bond or free and get this— no male or female.” Christ is a God of who so ever will for we were all bought with the same bride price which is His shed blood. Also Eve was indeed the weaker vessel and because of her naive spirit she was easily tricked into disobeying God. Adam however, knew full well that what he was doing was wrong but he did it anyhow. Since when is willful disobeidiance a virtue? Furthermore that “superior” male tried to blame Eve instead of protecting her or taking the responsibilty by owning up for what he had done of his own free will. Today is a knew day so let us ALL walk freely in the true spirit of Christ. The shackles have been broken. Women thou art free! Go forth in victory with the liberty and power bestowed upon us by the Master whi is Christ Jesus! Kudos to you Jimmy for standing for that which is only your right and resonible service!

  • Ken Shaw said:

    Dear President Carter,

    In my lifetime you have been the most Christian of any president we have had. God bless you for your unequivical stand on women’s rights and their place in the body of Christ.

  • S. P Gillespie said:

    You did not “lose” your religion, Mr. President, for your fine stand on women’s equality. You chose to leave an organized, man-crafted religious practice.

    You have demonstrated your exemplary religious sensitivity. Rising above the constraints of one parochial religious organization, you have shown the way to greater truth and love of humanity.

    The left-behind organization would do well to follow you. Likely you have stirred many members to review their outdated positions.
    Teachers, and you are a great one, must have faith that their teachings bear fruit long afterward. Your message will instruct for decades, maybe centuries.

  • Karencita said:

    I LOVE JIMMY CARTER, and I will ALWAYS challenge injustice whenever I see it, too! BLESSINGS!

  • Susan Hoffman said:

    Thanks Jimmy for finally seeing the light. Have voted for, respected you, and admired you like so many in the world have. The truth of this systemic discrimination and belittlement has been right in front of you and other church and world leaders all along…the Bible and other religious texts, written and protected by men; then interpreted into civil laws. Thanks for seeing the true meaning behind these writings and acting on this discovery.

  • Robert Churchill said:

    Good man, Jimmy Carter ! It is nice to keep hearing positive things from you. Robert

  • Martha Tressler said:

    Thank you Mr. President for your eloquent statement. You have long been on my list of heroes. God bless you!

  • Pam Thomas said:

    It is very puzzling to me why there is no mention of the millions of females who have been legally murdered by their own mothers by abortion. They were never given a chance to have life. Our society is structured so that the only way out for unplanned created life for so many women is murder. Does that make us civil?? Oh, and Mr. Carter failed to mention that the two largest missions offerings (many missionaries help women with the issues they face in their societies) for the Southern Baptists are named for highly respected female missionaries.

  • Mark said:

    I ditto the above comments. What a wonderful compassionate man. However, I believe he actually left the southern baptist convention many years ago (perhaps ten to fifteen). My wife and I did the same for the same reasons and I remember reading an article about his decision at that time.

  • Nancy Clark said:

    Someone suggested that Pres. Jimmy left his religion. That he did not do…he left his denomination. Big difference.

  • Christine Cadiz-Borglum said:

    A humble thank you from a life-long feminist to Women’s Press, and most definitely President Jimmy Carter. Your dedication and wisdom is an inspiration to so many of us fighting the fight. Thank you.

  • AK said:

    This is 3 year-old news — the author of this blog should really do some background research. http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2009/jul/12/jimmy-carter-womens-rights-equality

  • mphope said:

    Someone in the previous comments stated, “It’s about time President Carter took this stance.” It’s not “about time”. His comments are perfectly timed. There is a time for everything. This is the time we are all listening. There is no better time than now.

  • caroline bissell said:

    after being very involved in the women’s movement of the 70′s and teaching consciousness raising classes, i am amazed at the small amount of progress we have actually made. i was widowed 40 years ago and have experienced that discrimination over and over again. contrary to an earlier comment, it is not “one little verse” in the bible, it is a whole encompassing, underlying, world wide perception toward women and the churches are no exception.
    thank you, thank you, thank you, president carter for having the courage and strength of character to challenge those who continue to keep women “in their place”
    i long for the day when we are ALL truly equal.

    caroline bissell

  • William Kaplan said:

    Mr. President, you are indeed THE MAN. I don’t understand how man can be so stupid and blind.

  • Lillie Byrd said:

    Thank God for the Truth! Thank you for speaking the truth! You will be rewarded for what you have done with many thanks to God and you!!!!!!! What you have spoken will be heard!!! Plus, we will pass this torch on!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Marcia Swenson said:

    I am a 75-year-old, longtime professing atheist who believes that Jesus is a splendid role model for a life well lived, one I have endeavored to follow, albeit with glaring failures, throughout my life. Mr. Carter’s position, if not his superbly stated reasoning, has been obvious to me since I was a child. Why, I always asked myself, wasn’t it just as obvious to preachers, priests, and men who attempted to dominate my life. It didn’t take me long at all to figure out the truth. It wasn’t about God’s will at all; it was about their will, their power. Male Power. I NEVER bought it. NEVER. Now, late in my life, I must thank Mr. Carter for his lucid, elegantly accessible judgment of the position too many religions. My profoundest gratitude, Mr. Carter.

  • Christine said:

    I am in awe of his words. He writes so eloquently and I stand beside him in his views. Thank you Mr. Carter for standing beside us!

  • Jonelle johnson said:

    So, so true and thank you for saying it!

  • John T Smith said:

    Thank You President Carter . You are an inspiration !
    Appreciatively,
    John T Smith

  • Tammy LT-Pitzl said:

    Way to go President Carter!!! You have shown such class, understanding and respect for women…thank you!!! I have been an Advocate for Battered Women and their Children for 13 years (yes, we know that men are battered too). We find ourselves Advocateing for much more than the rights of Domestic Violence Victims…many of those are what you mentioned. The Women’s Movement has come a long way, and with more men, in every generation, stepping up to the plate, it will continue to improve. once again, Thank You!!!

  • Izabell Casselman said:

    Thank you Jimmy Carter. I just wish that more people of influence in government would have your moral compass and convictions. Thank you again.

  • ALI said:

    My mother offered me Mitochondrial DNA,and god said, let there be light and there was Mr. Carter.

  • Kate McLaury said:

    A renaissance man, and my hero. Integrity and honor should appear on his coat of arms.

  • Bill P. said:

    I applaud and respect you Jimmy Carter, for your eloquent statement on equality. Can you also speak on the subject of equality for men and women of non-traditional sexual orientation? ie; GLBT

  • Shannon said:

    I have always respected and admired this man. What a opportunity to watch how this one U.S. President has continued to work for all of us to try and build a better society. He is amazing!

  • Justin Andrusk said:

    Obviously Carter has a very low view of the Bible and a very high view of social equality.

  • Claudette Ross said:

    Thank you, President Carter.

  • Nancy Sack said:

    I concur,eloquent compassionate, equitable justice.

  • Vanda Guzman said:

    Wow, I am so amazed by what President Jimmy Carter just wrote. I am not shocked, he was always a man of honor from the feeling part of him. NOW HE HAS REALLY SHOWN HIS LOVE FOR HUMANITY. Ant time someone stands for what they believe when they know it is not the norm, I know the loving God sent him. May God continue to Bless you real GOOD. Love & Light Vanda

  • Jefferson Jaikar Anand said:

    Mr. President… I’ll feel proud and happy to have lived in the time of such a great person.

    India, with all her contrasting stances about equality of women throughout her history, still has strides to progress in this regard.

    Religion poses as an obstacle than as a stepping stone for progressing towards a world-society that upholds equality and justice. ‘Religious’ people follow the rules of the world; ‘Spiritual’ people follow their conscience. The connect with God and a person is more of a personal affair, and it needn’t be institutionalized!

  • Mondiablue said:

    Thank you Jimmy Carter!

  • Dennis Deitch Sr. said:

    President Carter was and always will be one of the best presidents I have lived under and have had many disagements with others to that understanding over the years. Glad to hear your words Mr. President. Peace of the Lord be with you always.

  • Carol said:

    Thank you Mr. Carter. What a great man. Very proud to be a woman in the USA!

  • Joan Smiley said:

    Thank you, President Carter. Your clearly stated writing is one that gives encouragement and hope to all who labor and pray for equality and human rights for women throughout the world.

  • T Nolson said:

    The christian message is supposed to be good news, and it is supposed to redeem, not oppress. The verses used agaist women were from times in history where things needed to change in order to save a culture in distress – it was good news!! We twist it for our own needs now – shame on us. Thank you President Carter for standing up, I respect you.

  • JEAN JOHNSTON said:

    HONORABLE PRESIDENT CARTER; YOU ARE A MAN WHO WALKS HIS TALK.I’VE ALWAYS BEEN A FAN OF YOURS AND I FIND IT HARD TO FATHOM THE COURAGE IT TOOK TO STAND UP TO YOUR BELIEFS EVEN WHEN THEY WERE COUNTER TO YOUR PREVIOUS CONCEPT OF FAITH. YOU TRULY DESERVE THE TITLE OF ELDER..

  • Bill Hager said:

    Back in the early 70′s, Jackson Browne sang “Across my home has grown the shadow of a cruel and senseless hand, but in some strong hearts the love and truth remains.”

    After Viet-Nam and Nixon, the years that Jimmy Carter was President were the only four years of my life that felt like we were really taken a turn. His so-called “malaise” speech was the gutsiest thing any President has ever done. At that time, America’s “soul” truly was at a crossroads and Americans did have a choice to make to decide what kind of Country this was going to be. Back then we could have done something about energy. We could have done something about “sustainable capitalism.”

    Ronnie Reagan’s answer: “This is America. You don’t have to ‘conserve.’ If you don’t have a BMW, get one.” America chose Ronnie. Enough said.

    It’s pretty much the story of my life that the guy I think was probably one of the three or four greatest President in our history is universally labeled as the worst President ever. Time will tell.

    Now he has the guts to put what’s right ahead of a lifetime of Baptist dogma? Jimmy Carter is a GREAT man.

    I think Obama is a good man and would like to do the right thing, but thirty years later we’re “eating the seed corn.” That ship has sailed.

    So sit back and be sure to tune in tonight to “Dancing With The Has-Beens and Wanna-Be’s.”

  • LeftSidePositive said:

    Sorry, Jimmy. I know you mean well. But these faiths have not “twisted” scripture to denigrate women. The hating of women is right there, in the text, over and over and over again:

    http://skepticsannotatedbible.com/women/long.html

    What exactly could it possibly take to make those statements and stories anything other than espousing the submission and devaluation of women? Where are all the verses that you think evens this out? (and is it even possible to even out a statement like “in sorrow you shall bear children, and your desire shall be for thy husband and he shall rule over thee” or “let not a woman speak in church” or “thou shalt not suffer a witch to live”?) And why, if the god you believe in is real, did he fail to correct all the women being mistreated in the name of his word (counting both old testament and new) for several thousand years?!

    You are the one twisting, and reading selectively. You’re ignoring the parts you don’t like, and yet still trying to have it both ways so that you can get the privileges of your faith and pretend that you worship a just and loving god. I’m sorry, but the character in those old stories does not meet any reasonable definition of just and loving, and it’s not a virtue to have faith in such a being, or to praise such a being (in fact, if it were even remotely likely he existed, I would say we have a moral obligation to fight him).

  • Doddee said:

    Bravo, President Carter. Please make an appointment to see Pope Francis, who speaks so eloquently about the poor and acts so compassionately toward the marginalized, Let him know that you, who have revered the teachings of Jesus throughout your many years, want to speak to him about the sin of sexism and the denial of women’s talents most especially in the world of organized religion.

    God bless you for speaking out. We pray for your well being.

  • Theresa Geary said:

    God Bless you Jimmy Carter! You get to take all the good with you and leave the bad. It is a win/win situation.

  • Russell Burck said:

    “The carefully selected verses found in the Holy Scriptures to justify the superiority of men owe more to time and place – and the determination of male leaders to hold onto their influence – than eternal truths.”

    There is also a timeless feature about this use of verses: It’s part of a culture of blaming others and not taking responsibility oneself. It’s part of a psychology that sees oneself as victim of others.

    Russ Burck

  • Mary Tierney said:

    Well done. As long as women remain the slaves of the world there will never be peace. Sadly religion has come about through greed and corruption . It has chosen to follow the path of Satin and not that of God, who is all about Love and Respect not matter how different we are to one another.

  • Margery Bass said:

    It isn’t just the Southern Baptists that demean women and their right to control over their own bodies. How about the Catholic church which doesn’t even want birth control? Barefoot and pregnant!

  • Janice Ziv said:

    President Carter, thank you most especially for this call to action. I hope and pray the leaders of the secular world and of the world’s religions will honor the wisdom of the Elders and the true teachings of their own faiths by embracing and building the diverse unity of all humanity that will move us forward.

    For yourself, I hope and pray that you find, or have found, a spiritual community that studies and shares the love that is the truest expression of godliness as profoundly as you so clearly do.

  • Patricia E Cook said:

    God will reward him.

  • Nick Hopkinson said:

    Thankyou President Carter
    As the Father of two girls (now grown up), I have always wanted everything for them but you express it so well.

  • Lucille rICHARDSON said:

    No one could have expressed these views more forcefully or eloquently and backed up his views with SUCH appropriate actions.
    Many,many thanks to a most revered LEADER!

  • Lucille RICHARDSON said:

    No one could have expressed these views more forcefully or eloquently and backed up his views with SUCH appropriate actions.

  • Lucille RICHARDSON said:

    Eloquently stated!

  • Jim DeLuco said:

    Inspirational. His life has been one of giving.

  • Deborah Bicksler said:

    Amen and thank you.

  • John Messimer said:

    President Carter shows a lot of grit and bravery. He is truly a prophet walking among us. He reveals the Holy Spirit for our time.

  • Marilyn Rickey said:

    I can appreciate Pres. Carter’s courage at leaving the church of his many yrs. of service. I left the Church to become a Baha’i at age 70 and have never regretted it. Under God’s guidence, we know when we must take a stand, no matter how difficult. God bless you, Sir.

  • Betty Graham said:

    I have long admired President Carter and now, with this statement, he has truly become one of my heroes. What a difficult decision to leave your church after 60 years. Your message should inspire many other religious leaders. Thank you.

  • dkantz said:

    This message is a particularly well articulated rallying cry for women’s justice within religious spheres and beyond.

    However, it appears to me there are 3 challenges to its transparency that, with this brief analysis, I hope to have undone those minor damages done to its integrity.

    1) This Jimmy Carter statement headlined “Losing my religion for equality” originally appeared in July 2009. The best link I have found (because it includes the entirety of the identical 13 paragraphs is http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/losing-my-religion-for-equality-20090714-dk0v.html?page=-1 . Since mid-January, 2013, this 4 years-old statement has been re-posted quite a number of times and none of these subsequent re-postings have (as far as I have found) been dated 2009 nor have included a link directly back to the original 2009 statement.

    2) Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter actually severed their ties to the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) in October, 2000 http://www.txbc.org/2000Journals/Oct2000/Oct00letterfromjimmyc.htm (confirmed by http://www.nytimes.com/2000/10/21/national/21CART.html ). The reasons cited in 2000 were not nearly as focused on concerns over the SBC’s policies regarding equality for women as the (9-years later) 2009 statement declares. In my opinion, it would have been far more transparent for this 2009 Jimmy Carter statement to have allowed that ‘ … these last 9 years of SBC policies toward women … ‘ had confirmed his and Rosalynn’s painful decision of 2000 (or some similar language to such effect) rather than to have falsely attributed these specific concerns as having been the major motivating factor in that decision they actually made back in the year 2000.

    3) The concerns expressed are all about blockages of and affronts to equality of women. The statement as composed is primarily “I” centered but makes several references to this being a joint decision of Jimmy AND Rosalynn Carter. Then why wasn’t “we” (Jimmy and Rosalynn) substituted for most of the “I’s” (Jimmy) in the 2009 statement (and all these 2013 re-posts)? Also, why wasn’t this statement made under the signature of both of them together?

    If (subsequent to holding office) our possibly most-honest politician of all U.S.-time can’t set an impeccable example of totally honest/accuracy about this political/spiritual matter, what, if anything, does that say about how critical/challenging it is to remain thoroughly transparent/accurate in what we say and do in our own evolutionary journeys?

    For what it’s worth, I forgive Jimmy, Rosalynn and all who may have seemingly mishandled in these minor ways this matter along its evolutionary journey to this point.

    That’s all, folks!

  • Cary B said:

    This is in clear violation not just of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights but also the teachings of Jesus Christ, the Apostle Paul, Moses and the prophets, Muhammad, and founders of other great religions – all of whom have called for proper and equitable treatment of all the children of God. It is time we had the courage to challenge these views.

    Pretty good read until he compared Jesus etc to Muhammad. Carter needs to read more about Muhammad to find out what he was really about. How he abused women, children and people of other religions.

  • Dawn Benck said:

    Mr. President, thank you so much for your wonderful commentary. I hope you will continue your growth toward equality by also embracing the needs of the homosexual and transgender communities. If you are looking for a new home church, check out the United Church of Christ. Most of them are open and affirming to all and promote equality for everyone.

  • Beverly Ann D'Aquanni said:

    I too cried with relief and joy when President Carter was elected. I wish that President Obama could take courage from his example in so may ways. There may then be more hope and optimism in this world.

  • Margaret said:

    I’ve always respected President Carter and have never understood why people call him the worst President we ever had. This well thought out piece is a wonderful example of why he has earned my respect.

  • Robert J Naumann said:

    Well said, Mr. President! You have always had my utmost respect as a true follower of Christ. I hope your action on this subject will cause your fellow Southern Baptists and others to reexamine their religious convictions. I believe the world will see you as a modern prophet for your stand on this issue as well as for you brave opposition to apartheid in South Africa as well as in Israel.

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  • Kurt Bailey said:

    It amazes me as Christians continue to water down the Biblical truth we are supposed to adhere to. The Bible says Adam was created first, and Eve out of Adam. It also says that God created a helpmate for Adam. The Bible doesn’t make the two equals, each has their own role. The serpent did deceive the woman, who ate the fruit and gave some to her husband. I think the equality issue is more accurately described as we ( men and women) want to be equal to God. We want to decide what parts of Gods word we want to believe and or obey.We have decided that we are basically good people and can decide what God really means in His word. To me it’s sad to see Mr. Carter add to the confusion that results when Christians take such positions. It seems we have discovered what has been wrong with the world from the beginning …. Men???

  • Kay Anonsen said:

    How deeply moved I am having read this statement from President Jimmy Carter. How often have I felt I stood alone, without the support of the men in my life: father, brothers, husband even though we shared tremendous love for each other. So I felt a great sweeping away of that bitterness when I read these words. One man’s affirmation of the rights of women has managed to heal me from the damage of hundreds of men who have continued to believe in my subjugated status. Thank you for your leadership. Thank you for your kindness. Thank you for the reparation you have done with this message.

  • Robert Heins said:

    Thank you for being you Mr. President. Your deep felt integrity is only surpassed by your wisdom! I have 5 daughters and currently 7 granddaughters who appreciate your decision and actions, Thank you once again.

  • Gef Flimlin said:

    Good for you, Jimmy. It takes a strong person to change something that has been a basic belief for 60 years. You’re a better man for it, and hopefully it helps set the example for others to wake up….especially the old men in my Catholic Church.

  • Michael Hagenbuch said:

    This is a very powerful statement and characteristic of his life-long courage to consistently speak the truth about a very serious issue. I echo his position and want to be counted as stepping up to say so instead of being silent allowing discrimination to happen.

  • LCBoniti said:

    Once again I am profoundly moved by the humanitarianism of this man. I have admired him since he was elected president as his personal ideals are what should have guided this country from the beginning. Fortunately, he did not give up, has not given up, and will not give up. Thank you, Mr. President. Thank you.

  • Faye Powell said:

    Thank you, President Carter, for your leadership in so many areas. As a fellow Georgia, you make me so proud!

  • Claire Devries said:

    What a great MAN! Thank for sharing your believes to us all…..

  • annie naville said:

    You continue to awe and amaze me. I’ve always loved and admired Jimmy Carter. A wonderful and intelligent man. I would love to meet and talk with him.

  • Carmen said:

    This has been on my mind for so long and you have said it so beautifully. Thank you for being the compassionate and rational being you are!

  • s a barbour said:

    It may surprise some people to find that the Pope was able to marry and many had mistress’s for many years. NOw, I wonder why that was stopped?/

  • Ed Pilkington said:

    There is so much that is right here. I felt however, Mr. Carter, that you sounded as if you were stating that all Christian leaders were guilty of this in your last paragraph. There are many evangelicals who hold to the scripture that says men are to be the head of the woman as Christ is head of the church and there is no subjugation or enslavement. Please be careful with your rhetoric. Your zeal may inflame and do great harm.

  • Cheryl Pauli said:

    Well said President Carter, and thank you!

  • Sandra Whitton said:

    This may well be the best Blog I will ever read. President Carter, the courage you have shown will be a beacon to the world.
    May the Elders prevail!!

  • Ellen said:

    Thank you President Carter for me, my daughter and son, my grandson and future grandchildren. God Bless You!

  • steven meyer said:

    The old anti-Semite wants to be back in the news again. go away Jimmy. haven’t you caused enough trouble?

  • Biloine W. Young said:

    Thank you President Carter for your brave decision, for making it and for explaining so eloquently your reasoning. Women around the world are grateful for your leadership and candor. Biloine Young

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  • Bill O'Connor said:

    Thank you for your bold honesty.

    From personal experience, I know what pain is involved
    in having to step away from the solace of community
    to follow where the Spirit leads.

    May this same Spirit comfort and strengthen you.

  • Salim Douba said:

    Thank you Jimmy Carter for courageously standing for Human Rights, amongst which Women’s Rights constitute the center piece for progress and for building healthy future. I can’t help iterate what Karl Marx said in this very central issue; “Progress is measured by women’s position is society”.

    Thank you again

    Salim

  • Ronald Zavala said:

    After reading the first paragraph I was expecting an exposition on the points where he is at odds with his native church. It rings hollow that he never returns to them, never cites what portions of scripture his church uses to support their position, and never states what he believes to be the correct teaching on these points. Here is how I see it.

    1) “that Eve was created second to Adam”: the only way to deny this is to deny scripture, in which case there is no point in debating the point since there is no common ground. Genesis is plain on this point.

    2)”[that Eve was] responsible for original sin”: incorrect. Eve was deceived, Adam sinned willfully. Adam is responsible, but Adam is the “head” of humanity and creation, so all suffer.

    3) “ordained that women must be “subservient” to their husbands,” etc. This is too large an issue to deal with here, but it comes down to subordination, not subservience. Just as the Son is subordinate to the Father, woman is subordinate to man. There is a life-time’s worth of literature on this matter for those that wish to investigate it. Just like the Trinity is hierarchical, so is creation. There should be no surprise there.

    4) Jumping to the end I think that Mr. Carter needs to provide the following in order to be taken seriously:

    a) please name a single female priest (unlike the Old Testament the New Testament never sanctions a special priesthood, btw) in the first 400 years of the church, catholic or otherwise;

    b) please name a single female bishop in the first 400 years of the church, catholic or otherwise;

    c) please name a single female apostle, just one, Mr. Carter. I can think of 12, minus Judas, plus Matthias, plus Paul.

  • claudia tapolow said:

    Jimmy Carter, thank you sir, for your courage and conviction of welcomed truth. The tide is turning for us all to be the children of creation.
    I am so happy to be alive to see and hear this. I Love you .

  • Adriana Arzac said:

    “If you want peace, work for justice.”

    My admiration and respect for you Pres Carter goes back many years now. Your committment to achieving global peaceful justice has been steadfast and courageous. As an educated professional Western woman who still has had to bend and accept the dominant patriarchy’s unjust treatment at every turn and in every realm; work, church, society at large, I thank you for saying ‘no more’ by your actions and by your statement. Thank you also for informing us about the Elders. With people like you and Pres Mandela as part of that group (which I hope perhaps includes at least one woman?)I feel that there is hope of justice, if not for my generation, for the ones that follow. For our daughters, nieces and granddaughters….and hope for peace between them and our sons, nephews and grandsons. It is time.

  • Vafa said:

    Mr. Carter has many admirable qualities, one of which is unprejudiced mind, another is courage. His understanding of spiritual truth is remarkable. Mr. Carter’s writing shows realization that religious teachings are in two areas. One area is eternal, such as all the virtues that all religions teach and another area is the social aspect of religion which changes according to time and place. As humanity changes and progresses Creator changes the social teachings to adapt to our needs. Because of our prejudice we try to hang on to age old teachings closing our eyes to new realities. It is admirable that Mr. Carter has realized this basic reality and is announcing it.

  • samuel John said:

    Dear President,
    This is the spirit of the age of confusion that has worked in you and destroyed your afterlife of bliss that Christianity or only the blood of Christ can provide. There is no equality in this ephemeral life; what we crave is the need to survive peacefully. Loosing Christ can allow you to bury your life in Eternal darkness that the abyss is all about.
    Women’s liberation lobby that started a war among themselves has brought in sex slavery and sex trafficking and all other mafia villainy. Freedom or liberty is an abstract word that may find its fruition in afterlife and there is ‘great and small’ in Heaven. Recently I have started a series called ‘The Creator and the created order’ that explains in a nutshell the immense price that God has paid. This is the spirit of the age that created a pandemonium in this plane, particularly among the Christians, to betray God by carnivorous passions of the world. I really worry for you and the whole generations that live in spiritual ignorance, the reason for confusing the minority hypocrites and religious people. I have written number of books and many internet messages that may give you some consolations and relief, if you want.
    These are the hiccups or birth-pang of a new age that proves the salvation-giver is Christ only.

    datetime

  • Dale Tucker said:

    Thank you very much President Carter. My wife Kathy and our daughter Jessica join me in our gratitude.

  • Rachel said:

    Man and woman have equality in importance but difference in roles. Carter has clearly misinterpreted the Bible. I’m a woman and proud of the protection and respect my husband and the Bible provide me with. Men are not women, and women are not men. Simple.

  • John said:

    hey folks this story is thirteen years old… it’s being recycled to serve an agenda.

  • Laurie Miholer said:

    Thank you President Carter for standing up for women and equality.

  • James Ruben said:

    Mr. Carter makes good general points, but shows his clear lack of reverence and understanding of God’s word. The God of the Bible never gives any one the right to murder because life comes from Him and is not solely the result of sex. This God also gives different gifts to men and women and one is leadership roles in His church. It is plainly written that only men are to be pastors and deacons. It does not say men are to act without counsel of all they serve and husbands are especially supposed to put their wives and families interest above their own, instead Epesians. Find another holy book that says that or world religion that states that men should be servant leaders. Christ Himself was the greatest advocate of women ever. His examples clashed greatly with that of the Jewish,Greek and Roman world view of His time. Mr. Carter does not get to pick and choose which parts of the Bible he believes. He must believe all or none. For him to say the God of the Bible gives women the right to murder their children for convenience sake or sex between women is okay is clearly heretical. He must believe in a God he made up and not the one of the Bible if he believes that. Please only decent comments and no hair g because I might tell you what you want to hear. If you can’t have discourse on any subject rationally,then one should realize the weakness of their views.

  • James Ruben said:

    Mr. Carter makes good general points, but shows his clear lack of reverence and understanding of God’s word. The God of the Bible never gives any one the right to murder because life comes from Him and is not solely the result of sex. This God also gives different gifts to men and women and one is leadership roles in His church. It is plainly written that only men are to be pastors and deacons. It does not say men are to act without counsel of all they serve and husbands are especially supposed to put their wives and families interest above their own, read Epesians. Find another holy book that says that or world religion that states that men should be servant leaders. Christ Himself was the greatest advocate of women ever. His examples clashed greatly with that of the Jewish,Greek and Roman world view of His time. Mr. Carter does not get to pick and choose which parts of the Bible he believes. He must believe all or none. For him to say the God of the Bible gives women the right to murder their children for convenience sake or sex between women is okay is clearly heretical, read the book of Romans in the NT.
    e must believe in a God he made up and not the one of the Bible if he believes that. Please only decent comments and no hating because I might not tell you what you want to hear. If you can’t have discourse on any subject rationally,then one should realize the weakness of their views.

  • Dr Raquel Thomas Caesar said:

    What Incredible wisdom and ACTION! May God bless President Jimmy Carter and team and hope that the work will inspire many to make the changes that are so necessary for humanity. Women’s equality will not happen if Men are not fighting this fight along side women. I long for the day that we reach the stage that equality for women is a reality in all parts of the world.

  • Jim said:

    This man lost his mind about ten years ago, he is a mental and family should keep him from making an ass out of himself.

  • Jim Reese said:

    I am proud to be from the same state as Jimmy Carter. It’s too bad that Georgia, and much of the country, has turned its back on progressive thinkers like him. It is not an overstatement to say he is the conscience of this nation.

  • Skulander said:

    Awesome thoughts.

    Yes, many faiths, including Christianity, do discriminate against women and girls in an intolerable way. Look at all the misogyny and sexism going on today, even in the U.S. We need more politicians voicing such thoughts.

  • Robert Pattison said:

    A magnificent challenge thrown out to other leaders.
    Who will match and develop these ideas?
    The world desperately needs political and religious leaders who will right these wrongs.

  • Mary Jones said:

    Thank you, Mr. President!

  • Crysyn said:

    There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.-Galatians 3:28

  • Juan Pedro Vasquez said:

    Honorable: Jimmy Carter, I have concluded, as a result of my life’s experience, that there is hope for a Humane Spiritual Path for all,and you sir have solidified my hope. Thank You.
    Juan Pedro

  • Jenna said:

    Nice work, President Carter. Although I must say that I don’t see what attracted a man with such sensibilities to Christianity in the first place.

  • Margaret Placentra Johnston said:

    One by one, people all over are waking up to the fact that divisiveness and inequalities – gender inequalities, race inequalities, sexual preference inequalities – are less mature than unitive consciousness. I always wondered about Jimmy Carter. He seemed to hold qualities of spiritual maturity, but practiced a belief system not known for its inclusiveness or tolerance of outsiders. I guess it just took him a while to recognize he doesn’t really fit into that church very well. Good luck to him in finding a new spiritual home that fits him better.

    Margaret Placentra Johnston, author
    Faith Beyond Belief: Stories of Good People Who Left Their Church Behind.

  • Amanda Dinsdale said:

    THANK YOU SIR!!!!!
    These are rousing, much needed thoughts and ideas for the world today.
    Thank you Mr. Carter for your eloquence and deeply intelligent insight.

  • Jay said:

    I agree with Mr. Carter and of course applaud him and the Elders for standing up. I would, however, point out one thing he stated which is the sad truth of the world… Now that he doesn’t have to worry about votes and public opinion, he can speak out.
    Unfortunately, the time to make these stands count is when you ARE the current leader and it is decidedly unpopular. Thats a hero. That’s integrity. That’s a leader, not a puppet to one’s own personal betterment.

  • Tracy Hurley said:

    Amen President Carter!

  • Stephanie said:

    Thank you President Carter. You are extraordinary!

  • Mary Tucker said:

    Inspiring!! President Carter is a true American hero.

  • Anne Christian said:

    I worked on President Carter’s national campaign in 1976. I was proud of him then, and I’m even more proud of him now. I so admire his religious views, his intellect, his caring and compassion and all that he is doing throughout the world to help people.

  • Sheryl said:

    God bless you, President Carter!

  • Lee ingram said:

    One honest man. One who has the intellectual integrity to even know what honest is. Contrast that with our current political leaders Like John Boehner and Paul Ryan. They are wild dogs compared to Mr Carter.

  • D. Vaughn Harbin said:

    There comes a time when a man of conscience has to thoughtfully take a stand even though it may mean having to ‘withstand’ other good and well-intentioned men. I admire you, Mr. Carter, for being such a man of conscience and for having the requisite integrity, courage and transparency to take that stand publicly at this time.

  • Andy said:

    It’s been my observation over the years that those who exalt women also subjugate them. That’s not so surprising when you consider the fact that both are deviations from the idea of equality. I also think that the battle for the equality of women has been won on the conceptual level and that full economic and political equality cannot be far behind. The current battle is to end discrimination based on sexual orientation. The two are related in that progress in the latter helps to solidify the gains of the former.

    In order to win any of these battles, we must absolutely give up any notion that we are inherently superior to any other human being.

  • bass desires said:

    President Carter is a very rare man. He is his own church and has no need of any other. You have always made us so proud of you sir.

  • Ida Greschner said:

    Ex president Jimmy Carter and his wife Rosaline Carter were the only people in high office who served this nation with the most integrity.
    The corporate oligarchy could not by them so they got rid of them at the next election. Mr. Carter and his wife are living the life what real Christians, or people with fate in a higher power should. They are an example for all of us. With the rampant corruption and hypocrisy that we see on a daily basis it is uplifting to see people who are standing up for what they believe. I’m convinced that this is just the beginning. People are hungry for honesty, real values, and kindness toward our fellow human sisters and brothers. They are the pioneers,
    the leaders who are showing us that by living a life with integrity is what makes us humans. And this will be our future. Thank you Mr. Carter for following your heart and convictions. You are already blessed.

  • Linnette Dooley said:

    An amazing and honest contribution from former President Jimmy Carter and the Elders. They are truly doing the work Elders were meant to do. I shared with the women on https://www.facebook.com/WellSpringsWomen. Thank you for sharing!

  • Ann Gaul said:

    Thank you, President Carter, for the courage you have shown and continue to show on behalf of the “least of (Christ’s) brethren.” As a Roman Catholic woman I have struggled with the position my church has taken with respect to women. Therefore,I admire all the more your willingness to call religious leaders to account for their intransigence with respect to women’s service in the Church. I am sorry for the pain this separation from SBC has caused you, and thank you again for your sincere and courageous witness to truth.

  • Jennifer Quinn said:

    YES! YES! and YES!

    Love this line: “But my fellow Elders and I, who come from many faiths and backgrounds, no longer need to worry about winning votes or avoiding controversy – and we are deeply committed to challenging injustice wherever we see it.”

    NOW!— I want a leader we can elect with these values who is not afraid of being deeply committed to challenging injustice wherever she/he sees it!

    What an amazing man President Carter is! So much easier it would have been to just go on with his life and not question his long-held (60 years) belief system. AMEN! And Hallelujah!

  • SusanCross said:

    Thank you for all you have done, all you do, and the example you set, President Carter. Your leadership means an incredible amount to me personally and to the world as a whole. Your continuing thoughtfulness and your activism for good in the world give me hope and inspire me to try to do likewise.

  • Tonya Roberts said:

    To speak of women with this respect is unheard of today.

  • Carrie Peterson said:

    The world would be so different had the election gone differently. When will humanity learn to honor and respect grace instead of greed?

  • Barbara Moore said:

    Thank you from the bottom of my heart, Mr. Carter.

    Subservient! That word affects me deeply. After a lengthy marriage of subservience, I left and wrote my story, Submissive No More. At the age of 66, I left my church, sensing I could no longer remain with any authenticity. Like you, I want to be true to myself and my values.

    Last August, an optimistic American nun said,”The world is outgrowing the dualistic constructs of superior/inferior, win/lose, good/bad, and domination/submission. Breaking through in their place are equality, communion, collaboration, synchronicity, expansiveness, abundance, wholeness, mutuality, intuitive knowing, and love.” I perceive this to be your working model, as well. Blessings on the work of the Elders and all of us (male and female) who choose to better the world in large and small ways.

  • Fuad said:

    What Mr President says is true of course because it is the requirement of the time which cannot cope with the old churches rules and regulations, not even with the Islamic jurisprudence which has more than a thousand interpretation for every valid subject can be of any help! But what is also true is that whatever has been put in the Books of God, were of the requirements of the era of their revelation and cannot be changed by no single man, group of elders, in any earthly power for that matter. It is God Himself that prescibes the remedy for the problems of His humanity in the New Revelation which has been ignored by them and many more, close to two centuries. God alone can change the hearts of men through His Words which are the guidelines for the humanity. Let’s to strive to find out ‘is there any New Revelation out there that gives solution to what Mr President is so concious of it?

  • Erin said:

    Thank you so much President Carter. You are indeed a wonderful man. You cannot believe how much you have said is so very important for the whole planet to hear. All the best to you.

  • Diana Boxall said:

    You have won my greatest respect for having the courage of your convictions, and the determination to do something to right a grevious wrong. As you so rightly point out neither in Islam, Judaism or the original Christian teachings are women relegated to subserviant beings. This appears to have happened when religion was bent to accord with local tradition or for political gain and power.
    May God bless you for your strength and courage, you are a truly good man.

  • Sam said:

    Jimmy Carter is not a Baptist nor a Southern Baptist, but a Lutheran! So this is hogwash! Plus, Nelson Mandela and the ANC are terrorists!

    I heard Carter speak back in the 80′s at a Lutheran retreat and he was a mindless serf then too. Hard to believe this man was ever elected.

  • Walli Carranza said:

    Mr. President, your courageous decision has the potential to inspire a far more rapid deployment for changes that, on their own would take another half century to come. It is time for women around the world to declare this “The Women’s Spring” and rise up with our sisters across the planet to insure every woman is free, every woman has full and equal opportunity and every woman is safe. Imagine what would happen if 100% of Catholic women decided that now was the time for women in the priesthood? Might just give Pope Francis the chance to do something that would have made Francis of Assisi very proud!

  • Eleanor Johnston said:

    Jimmy Carter has, for decades, been a model of wisdom and integrity for all the people of the earth. When he has been criticized, it has been unfairly. Now he is known as an Elder, a wise old man. We need to listen to him.

  • Quinn Strikwerda said:

    This is an amazingly well written and passionate message that needs to be shouted from the rooftops. Thank you President Carter! I’m a little concerned about the casual revisionism though. “During the years of the early Christian church women served as deacons, priests, bishops, apostles, teachers and prophets.” There’s biblical evidence of female deacons, teachers, and prophets. Certainly there were female apostles (Mary Magdalene for starters). But priests and bishops? Ummm, where?

  • John Windsor said:

    Resounding support from New Zealand for this articulate and compelling statement. I would however point out to whoever wrote the title of this piece that they have chosen the wrong term. I am sure that Jimmy Carter has not turned his back on God or his Christian faith, but rather called out the leaders of a denomination who’s stance is reprehensible. It is best to avoid confusing the terms religion, denomination and faith. Denominations are a man-made construct and quite dispensable, in my view.

  • yvette robinson-sarasola said:

    DEAR Mr President Carter I commend you go have the guts to say how you feel it,s a shame the rest of the male leader in WORLD don,t have your convictions .As a WOMEN Australia we find it quit amazing that we as a world society have come so far in one way but still there is just a shill a divide between the sexes .We the world looked AMERICA IN THE 60,S what the female artists and feminism was taking place in your country, it gave women around the world a voice made way for women’s rights to change .But now we see that it not save for women again with videos with women dress in nothing and paraded like pieces of meat its a sad day still in this world of global market. In Australia our nation had a saying we lived of the sheep back now we see that sex is begin use every where to make money in the world .We need to educate our your men that this can,t continue to be done to women.THANK YOU FOR SPEAKING OUT.

  • Teresa said:

    Worst President we have ever had until Obama. My Southern Baptist Church doesn’t preach the same words as Jimmy Carter is saying that his did. Women are not subserviant to men. Men are supposed to be the Spiritual Leader not the ruler of the woman. If a man does what he is supposed to in the home, the wife will be glad to live as Christ wants her to. That is the key that most people do not understand. The reason women have to take the lead now is because men are not the men they should be in life. I would love not to have to work, but if I chose to. I am not a feminist, I love for men to open doors for me and treat me like a queen. I have a job that I get paid equally to the man in the same position.

  • margery drake said:

    spoken like a true real man. thank you, mr. president.

  • Eddy said:

    Isn’t it ironic that one result of the fight for women’s right to abortion has aided religious and cultural discrimination by preventing female births on a massive scale?

  • Gma Kaye said:

    As stated here, President Carter left his denomination ; not his religion. Now if he would address his cronies in Washington to withdraw financial support to radical regimes whose religious practices routinely practice, not only discriminatory practices of women, but barbaric acts of mutilation and murder of innocent young girls and women! You can’t have it both ways!

  • Troppo Pierre said:

    Is this a scam? This original article was supposedly published July 15, 2009 according to Fairfax Media – yet they attributed it to “The Observer” – http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/losing-my-religion-for-equality-20090714-dk0v.html

  • Yosh said:

    Jimmy Carter continues to lead the way for Americans. It’s unfortunate that he’s so far ahead of most of us, with our emotional, religious, and sectarian baggage.

  • Allison said:

    Very well said, Mr. Carter. I continue to be impressed with you. Your quiet wisdom is needed in this world.

  • Janet Saulter-Hemmer said:

    While I did not think he was a good president (gas shortage/rationing – 18% home mortgage interest – Iran hostage crisis), he is a GOOD MAN with a heart that speaks the truth.

  • Charles Dougherty said:

    Again Good Sir you speak from Wisdom and Vision with Clarity. It is fantastic to observe a fellow Human Being evolve and transcend the status quo and protocals of the mundane world. We as humans have an oppurtunity to Love and Care for each other…and You have embraced this great cause. All Happiness Mr President. In Peace Sir

  • ray anderson said:

    yes! yes! yes!

  • Sylvain in QC said:

    Very good! Too bad this is not the kind of comment a president in office can make… he would not be re-elected.

  • Teresa said:

    Thank you Mr. President Carter for your unwavering discipleship, a true and faithful model for all to follow.

  • Gloria Nye said:

    I admire your courage, President Carter. The world is blessed to have you.

  • david kern said:

    When challenged to name an honest politician, President Carter is one of the few names I can think of. Right now I really can”t name another.

  • Paul said:

    I appreciate his taking a stand for Women’s rights and gender equality, but I find it hard to read the Bible (or Koran) and find a consistent message of equality. The unfortunate fact is that there are many very sexist verses in the Bible, which are not at all ambiguous. The fact that there are also verses encouraging equality merely underscores the contradictions and hypocrisy of these books. The same applies to verses that implicitly or explicitly condone slavery, racism, total war, genocide, executions, animal sacrifice, genital mutilation, eternal torture, and the rejection of basic scientific facts. And these verses are not rare, nor are they the exception.

    The question I’ve had to ask myself (as someone raised as a Christian), is, if I have to reject such a large part of it, whether I should believe any of it?

  • Andrew Stallybrass said:

    Many thanks for these wise words and this costly stand. It’s never easy to break with one’s own ‘family’.

    I recently heard a Jewish story of the creation. God created Eve, and Eve was bored, so God created the animals, and for a while that alleviated her boredom. But she said to God after a few aeons, ‘Can’t you create something more like me, someone I can relate to and dialogue with?’ And God said, ‘No problem. But he’ll be a little difficult to handle, and he won’t like the idea that he wasn’t first. So that better stay a secret between us women!’

  • sharon scott said:

    President Carter has always been a man who sought to live and act in harmony with and true to his deeply held beliefs. This did not serve him well in the world of politics but, even as President, political success was not his primary goal.

  • Carol McShane said:

    Jimmy Carter for Pope!

  • Carolyn Rae Williamson said:

    Jimmy Carter said it well. Women are not treated well in many countries. Even in the U.S. women have had to be better than male candidates for a job. Thank goodness, opportunities are better here now. As an early working mother, I faced pressure from my own mother to stay home. Only when I told her we needed my income, did she comment less often. Since I put my children first, my career was not illustrious, but I am proud of raising three healthy, responsible adults.
    Carolyn Rae Williamson, Author, There IS Life After Lettuce, and Searching for Gold.

  • Michael Wood said:

    Wisdom does not always come with age. In this instance I think wisdom has been a compnanion for a very large part of his life. I am sure our Bishops share his view.

  • Andrew Ward said:

    Dear President Carter, Thank you for taking this position on Woman’s Equality. We can only imagine the difficulty you experienced in reaching this difficult conclusion. That said, in reaching this truth and eloquently expressing the reasons, the needs and the necessity of expressing a conclusion, while you could easily have remained silent, will guide and empower others to ask these same difficult questions.

    There are those who feel these are not difficult questions. Perhaps they have already reached these conclusions, or were taught these principals and say shame on you for taking so long. They can’t appreciate the ubiquitous and deep roots Woman’s Inequality has in our free society.

  • HeatherJo said:

    Great article. But I found the italic font hard to read. Dear editors, please consider using a font that is easier on the eyes for your excellent articls.

  • Briget Bride said:

    Dear Mr. Carter,
    Thank you seems a small token to extend to you. You are plainly and eloquently expressing your deeply felt convictions. I take your example and use it to continue my own personal work to understand where my thinking and believing comes from; and attempt to change and improve it when necessary. Like you, I believe that important change has to be well thought out, implemented slowly, and supported by evidence. This is truly a global issue, on many levels.
    Warmest Regards.

  • Dick Vathje said:

    I was concerned and uncomfortable when President Carter was elected as I always have a suspicion of those claiming to be devout Christians. As time went on, I was totally impressed by what I witnessed as a true Christian in spirit and deed. He truly was a noble man!

    I was even more impressed by his Habitat for Humanity project which has really changed the world. Now after all these years, I applaud his decision to stand up for what is right and just. In our senior years, we normally try to retain the status quo and remain in our comfort zone. Mr. Carter has given us a model that few of us could ever achieve.

  • Judy said:

    Bravo, President Carter

  • Socorro M said:

    Well done Mr Carter, we do not need more laws, what we need is to change culture through education; good analysis Mr President!!!!

  • Gary Burbridge said:

    Thank you! you remain an inspiration to me and to many others.

  • jeffrey fitzgerald said:

    Dear Mr. President. I sat behind you at a small facility in Northern Indiana for significantly challenged people when you came to our church service the year you ran for president. The gentleness and kindness you showed our consumers was impressive and I still have a photo of you and Doug. I supported you then and have never been more proud to support you now. Wisdom, fairness and compassion for your fellow man have always made you stand out among all the great leaders of the world. We were lucky to have you as president and are lucky to have you as a member of the Elders. Keep up the great work. Jeff Fitzgerald

  • Kate McIntire said:

    I’ve always loved and admired you, Mr. President, but never so much as I feel today.

    I too left my church for the same reasons. A few trusted friends told me that I should stay and fight. Others said they feared that the enemy of our souls, Satan, would separate me and destroy me.
    However, that deed had already been done. Considering the treatment dished up by my brothers-in-Christ, Satan had hardly anything left to do. I would neither serve nor speak. Compounding matters, my husband who is a capable, creative, and fine person, was included because he “could not manage his wife”.

    Happily, God is not confined to this church or that. Neither am I.

  • Terri said:

    Why did it take 60 years?

  • Barbara Lowery said:

    My thanks for your words and wisdom, President Carter. You are helping to change the world in ways it clearly needs to grow.

  • Steph from fangswandsandfairydust.com said:

    President Carter has always chosen the high, more difficult road over the easy path. He has always been a voice of reason and sanity. It is people like President Carter that make me believe the human race and the great experiment in governance that is America will continue.

  • Clive Griffin UK said:

    This statement reinforces my long held admiration for president Carter, his wise words provide a huge sign post towards a better way of life for all.

  • Lisa Ort-Sondergard said:

    Mr. President:
    I am so proud of your position and most importantly your words…as a feminist, a Christian and a mother, I have often been conflicted between my faith in God and my deep disappointment in the manner in which women have been treated in the church. Thank you for your courageous words, your leadership and your personal committment to equality…You are a hero to me…I long for a world where all women, here and in other parts of the world are treated with respect and the love Jesus Christ modeled for all. God Bless you in your work…Respectfully,
    Lisa Ort-Sondergard

  • SylviaSheron said:

    I am concerned that Pres. Carter sounds like he is leaving his Christian faith to be a part of this group called the Elders. The Elder’s support controlling the population of the world through pro abortion agenda’s and gay rights. I would like to ask, What about the equal right of the unheard fetus? Should we not also as Christians defend those who cannot defend themselves? Although I agree that a lot of male dominated religions tend to twist their views to meet their own idea’s against women, Christianity is about who Jesus is and what He has done for us, not about these crazy opinions. As Christians let us focus on Jesus, not on these crazy’s.

  • Losing my religion for equality | Rapid Notes said:

    [...] treatment of all the children of God. It is time we had the courage to challenge these views. Jimmy Carter Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… [...]

  • Deb said:

    If my own church didn’t allow women to take leadership,roles, a lot of God’s people would have not have been served…..The Southern Baptists no doubt would have not allowed Mother Theresa to do her work, either, and wouldn’t that have been a shame….

  • Mary Dragonfly said:

    Yeah!! Jimmy Carter standing up against religious brainwashing.

  • Al Reese said:

    Two times I was a volunteer on the Peanut Brigade, and always a proud supporter of Jimmy Carter His courage and vision as president and afterwards have never been matched by any other elected official in the U.S. His wise, informed, and compassionate support of women’s rights in 2013 comes as no surprise, but as a special gift, at a time when women have been terribly denigrated in our country as well as abroad. He and Roslyn both will always be heroes of my entire family.

    Al Reese
    Presbyterian Minister, PC, USA
    Last parish, Bainbridge, GA.

  • Rev Casey McKibbon said:

    Well done! Nice to hear such wisdom from a person younger than I am! Go Jimmy.

  • Marys said:

    Not only is he a real sister, he listens to REM! Thank you, Jimmy.

  • Wasi said:

    I have no respect for most politicians except one- Jimmy Carter. We need more people like him on this earth.

  • lorayne grindrod said:

    Thank you from all women who have been oppressed by religious bigotry.
    Now lets the Pope and Mormons who continue to regard women as unworthy to hold high office, understand their biblical misinterpretation.

  • Chantal Dechape said:

    You are an inspiration, President Carter for your faith, your works and the courage to speak the truth. There is much work to be done. Hurray for the Elders and their commitment.

  • Gail Burchard said:

    Seldom, if ever do I want to share on FACEBOOK……. but yes, I’m going to try and hope others will take the time to read the wise words that are shared and expressed so well by Jimmy Carter. Thank you Mr. President!!

  • Martha B said:

    I rue the day I chose John Anderson and a 50 cent gas tax over Jimmy Cater. Ronald Regan started u on a long slide both economically and morally.

  • Annamarie Beckel said:

    I wish more of our religious and political leaders had Jimmy Carter’s courage and honesty, as well as his compassion. How different might our daughters’ lives be if they were treated with simple equality, respect, and dignity. Unfortunately, Carter is too good a man to have been a “successful” president – and that’s a very sad thing to say.

  • Jim Chesnut said:

    I voted for him then; I would vote for him now. He remains my favorite U.S. president and is a true leader. Kudos.

  • lc said:

    YESSS!!! Finally, someone speaking the words I think daily! Thank you, Mr President, for standing up. The worst extremists of all organized religions hate it when anyone questions their motives, beliefs or facts. And they typically are men who cry the loudest because they stand the most to lose if women were empowered and treated equally.

  • Elaine said:

    Well said!

  • Mary N. Farr said:

    Along with others like President Mandela, who become the messengers of truth, this Christian truly speaks as the Christ-like human being he is…he sees God in others which is our mandate from Christ…to love each other, our enemies included! And if he nails himself to the Cross of truth, so be it…he’s above the fray…and may God continue to bless him and his family. My, what an amazing human being indeed!

  • Chaylon Holland said:

    Is the Complementarian view of the sexes not represented within Womenspress – SLO? Where are those voices? It’s not as though all women hold to the Egalitarian view.

  • Gaston R. DesHarnais, PhD said:

    Mr. President, Again, Thanks for throwing a pure and compassionate light on the problems and dignity of our global human family. To quench the hells of this world with love and true justice has ever been your mission. You prevented a war over that hostage crisis and you have ever worked for peace and the betterment of those most sorely in need, going
    all over the globe to help and heal, especially your Guiana-worm initiative, so simple and so effective! Suffering, evil and dangers lurk everywhere, but know-how and love trump greed, racism and gender-based discrimination. Thank you both for making this a better world and human family!

  • ROSALEE HODGE said:

    This is the one president in my lifetime that I have always loved and respected beyond words. Say what you want about his presidency, and I can’t say this about any other, I always trusted this man. This very eloquent commentary just proves what I always felt about his humanitarianism. God bless him for the ability to leave his lifelong religion; he still has his faith to guide him and there will be a very special place in heaven for President Jimmy Carter.

  • Julie Carter said:

    Thank you, Mr. President, for standing up for the rights of women throughout the world. We are so lucky. Your former church — not so lucky. Your defection is truly its loss.

  • Judi Nyerges said:

    Mr. Carter,
    I have sung your praises since your election, since I trekked down to Plains on a family vacation just to see the roots of your journey, since the first images of you and your whole family doing work you believed in from your depths for poor people, sick people and people all over you just KNEW you could HELP. I will continue to sing those praises and hold your banner high until it is my turn to go. Thank you and Rosylnn for being who you are.
    Judi Nyerges

  • Agnes McIvor said:

    So well expressed. Why are we not reading this in headlines in our newspapers and hearing it on the National news of every country? As one of thousands of Canadian grandmothers who fundraise for the Stephen Lewis Foundation, which supports the African grandmothers in their courageous task of raising ten million children orphaned by AIDS, I applaud you for your leadership and advocacy for equal rights for all women.

  • Linda Schissler said:

    Amen. I have always felt that President Carter was a man of great personal integrity, both as an individual and as president. Thank you for taking this important stand.

  • Delwyn said:

    If you can leave your religion over an issue, it is because you never had one to begin with. Women were never priests in Christianity, although they were deacons, nor were they Apostles. His theological ignorance matches his governmental ignorance, which was already displayed during his presidency.

  • Abu Salma said:

    Thank you Mr. President.
    How thoughtful!
    How heart warming!
    Dear Mr. Carter may the Lord of Lords ever bless you.

    - – -

    If we, the 7 billion inhabitants of planet earth follow and execute your prescription sir, war will cease and peace will reign. Women are an important element here.

    Women MUST have their say. Women had been so kind and patient.

  • Freshair said:

    When you “post” articles like this, please state the fact, that while true, Jimmy Carter originally wrote this over a decade ago when he left the SBC.

    http://message.snopes.com/showthread.php?t=83940

  • Rita Good said:

    Thank you to the Elders who are not afraid to stand up for what is right and just. Thank you, Jimmy Carter. Now, just carry the same message you have shared about women and substitute gays and lesbians/ homosexuals. No Higher Authority has condemned this group either. Equal justice and Equal rights for all – including Marriage. Amen.

  • Dan said:

    I’m glad that Carter has changed his mind about that stupid church and it’s distortion of Christianity.

    He’s much better as a religious philospher then he ever was as President.
    Easily the worst president in my lifetime (I’m 63) he was in so far over his head that the only one worse than he is the empty suit we have in there now.

    God save the USA from the radical in the White House…

  • Ron Capone said:

    Truth is Justice Justice is Truth

  • Farid said:

    Jimmy Carter is a politician. He is very clearly not a theologian or credible Bible teacher. His words above prove that he misses the heart of what God is saying through his Word. Carter cannot help but mix his political and activist agenda with the Bible. The result is a poisonous mixture of fleshly thinking encapsulated in a modern container.

  • Farid said:

    “I am also familiar with vivid descriptions in the same Scriptures in which women are revered as pre-eminent leaders. During the years of the early Christian church women served as deacons, priests, bishops, apostles, teachers and prophets. It wasn’t until the fourth century that dominant Christian leaders, all men, twisted and distorted Holy Scriptures to perpetuate their ascendant positions within the religious hierarchy.”

    Where is Jimmy Carter getting this information. I have done intense study in Christian history. This is a bold-faced lie. There was no such thing as a “priest” in the Early Church… they did not exist. Bishops, deacons and teachers were all men. I’m sorry, Pres. Carter, but it is necessary to be truthful and accurate in what you say. Lying should be hated by all of us and avoided at all cost.

  • Sandra Stephenson said:

    Thank you for this well presented commentary. You have always impressed me as one who is faithful and truthful to the Word. You have such love for the people around the world and their rights and opportunities and this stand for women makes us all proud and appreciative. You make us PROUD and hopeful that others can find their way to understanding the real intent of the Scriptures and not continue to interpret as they want them to be understood. You restore my Faith in mankind. May you continue to be Blessed.

  • Karen said:

    Very well said, President Carter and thank you for saying so eloquently. However, I take exception to the headline. President Carter has not given up his religion, which is Christianity. He has severed ties with a denomination. There are many Christian denominations that don’t treat women as second class citizens.

  • bobgriffith said:

    I am proud to say that I had the opportunity to vote for this man twice. He has shown more courage and character than men. You know what he does is driven by who he is. Good job Mr President.

  • Reid Schoonover said:

    Jimmy Carter has always been and continues to be a True American Hero. He has always had my highest regard and no one in public or private life in the 20th or 21st Centuries has done more for the good of humankind the he has. Thank you Jimmy Carter for all you have done for all of us.

  • Dennis said:

    Beware of false prophets that come to you in sheep’s clothing but are really ravenous wolves

  • Dorothy Kulwin said:

    Dear Mr. President,
    You are a National Treasure and far reaching in your beliefs and attitudes. Thank you.

  • Helmuth Gripentrog said:

    Jimmy Carter’s article is very much worth reading. Male dominance has been a dark chapter in the history of Christian churches (and many other religions) for ages. It is not such a long time ago that women were prohibited from studying organ playing at institutions and playing the organ in churches by laws and guidelines designed by men. Think if we would not have had Marie-Claire Alain, Gillian Weir, Jeanne Demessioux, Diane Bish and many, many more famous organists. I will explain the extraordinary example of the eminent Swedish organist Elfrida Andreé (1841-1929).

    Elfrida Andreé at the age of 16, after private studies (because she was not allowed to study at an institution), became the first female organist in Sweden to receive her organist diploma at the Royal Swedish Academy of Music in Stockholm. But she was prohibited by law to take up any official position as organist. By 1861 she and her father had managed to instigate an amendment which made it possible for women to apply for and hold a position as organist. From 1861 to 1867 she served as organist at the Finnish and French Reformed Churches in Stockholm and from 1867 until her death 1929 she served a record time as organist at the Cathedral in Gothenburg. For her services, she was even elected to the Royal Swedish Academy of Music. She composed a variety of music which is performed even today, but during her lifetime she suffered of indifference toward her music because of her gender.

    Elfrieda Andreé (who even instigated a change of law allowing women to apply for and hold positions as telegraphists) paved the way for many outstanding female organists and church musicians in Scandinavia.

    So why were there laws prohibiting female church musicians in the first place? Well, male leaders had used the same tactics and selected Bible verses Jimmy Carter refers to in his article, to give them positions of influence and power at the expense of the complete female half of society.

    I very much respect Jimmy Carter, who had the courage to take a necessary step – not to change his believes – but to leave a church that clearly has decided to discriminate against all its female members.

  • Dawna Schwindt said:

    President Carter, I have not always agreed with some of your policies. However I just want to say God Bless you for what you are doing with this. Regrettably our bible was not written by GOD, but by men. The women of this world have suffered mightly for that. Thank you for standing up for equality. I worked all my life, harder than most men, for less pay, less respect, and less advancement. I am not complaining. I kept my family together and that is what I set out to do. However it was not right, and I could have done so much more for my family had I been treated fairly.

  • Tora Stenbeck said:

    Dear Mr. president Carter.
    I have just put my 10 year old daughter Hanna to sleep here in Uppsala, Sweden. I worry about the world in which she is about to grow up. And so does she. Already at this young age she is asking me why boys are better then girls. “Why is it that boys are more worth?” “We are the same”, she adds. Sweden is a good country for people to live in. But we have a long way to go. And ignorance must be fought over and over again. We must educate our children. And we must learn how to listen to and be guided by wisdom. To learn about “The Elders” brought hope and joy to my heart. On behalf of me and my daughter, my husband and sons – thank you. I hope you reach out to many leaders and that it changes the future to the better, for us all.
    With much respect and love,
    Tora Stenbec Straarup

  • Ann M Vendrell said:

    I read your article with tears in my eyes. You are a wise man and we are so lucky to have you. I have read your books and been so taken by your courage. May God Bless you and keep you with us for a very long time.

  • Patricia said:

    An honest and truly christian. and I’m truly proud to have had the opportunity to cast my vote for him. As a woman and mother of a daughter ….Thank you Mr. President.

  • Sotosue Tee said:

    THANK YOU President Carter! You are an incredible humanitarian. I am proud that you are an American and have been an American President.

  • Rowshan Mustapha said:

    What you said regarding the perversity of religious leaders Mr. President Carter is perfectly true. There is no justification whatsoever today for discrimination towards girls and women. The ages when conditions of life were harsh are over. The world is drawing nearer and nearer to world federation day by day. Humanity cannot soar towards progress with a feeble wing. The two wings must be equally strong. Thank you Mr. President, I would like to help if there is anything I can do. All the best.

  • Anita said:

    Thanks for taking a stand…

  • Celia said:

    Well said! He is one of the good guys. I hope he is able to find a new spiritual home.

  • Jerry Stauffer said:

    Former President Carter’s lack of knowledge is discouraging. “Women served as apostles”? Even most Sunday School students know that there were only 13 (12 with Jesus plus Paul). Not allowing women deacons does not equal rape/prostitution/genital mutilation/slavery/random beating on the street/or ANYTHING to do with Islam. It’s not equality, it’s about roles. The God of the Bible isn’t out to create an oppressive police state, the instructions in there are to create a stable world.

  • Phil Smith said:

    President Jimmy Carter was one of the last old breed President. He was not a flashy man and seemed to be honest and spoke from conviction. He was, as a consequence, not a popular president because he didn’t play ball the D.C. way. I’m not sure if we will in the future ever elect a president who is honest and doesn’t play the money game, cater to big PACs and give in to popular prejudices and barroom bozos. I was raised a Catholic and I left this church for the same reasons President Carter could no longer be part of a religious institution which marginalizes women and continues in its patriarchal tradition that “Father Knows Best.”
    I’m sure President Carter will be vilified for his beliefs. A system of beliefs should not be based on the principle of exclusion but just the opposite–inclusion. Our spiritual beliefs should be based on positive, loving, principles which help us raise up the oppressed and the hungry and those who are excluded from the pursuit of happiness.

  • Bobi Gallagher said:

    Gracias, danke, thank you, merci. President Carter, you are a prophet for this time and place. Thank you for taking the scriptures in their whole and allowing yourself to be the voice of the Elders. I am delighted you and the Elders exist and are speaking up. Thank you from all who have felt the pain, sting , suffering caused by discrimination. God smiles when we show love and respect for one another. I am smiling a big smile for you.God’s is bigger.

  • Antonio said:

    Jimmy carter is by far the worst president this poor country has ever had, Obama is a very close second. Jimmy carter will also do anything for attention. THE MARIEL BOATLIFT SANCTIONED BY “JIMMY I’LL NEVER LIE TO YOU CAERTWER: The Cuban government subsequently announced that anyone who wanted to leave could do so, and an exodus by boat started shortly afterward. The exodus was organized by Cuban-Americans with the agreement of Cuban president Fidel Castro. The exodus started to have negative political implications for U.S. president Jimmy Carter when it was discovered that a number of the exiles had been released from Cuban jails and mental health facilities. The Mariel boatlift was ended by mutual agreement between the two governments involved in October 1980. By that point, as many as 125,000 Cubans had made the journey to Florida.
    OPERATION EAGLE CLAW: A disasterous plan to rescue the Iranian hostages. Killing 8 American service men. Oh and a 1980 interest rate of 12%. Reagan saved us from this peanut farmer…Thanks for the opertunity to rant.

  • Margery said:

    Thank you, President Carter. There have been many debates in my house about you (my husband was a military man who drank the kool-aid). But I have always felt you were guite wise and a great leader (when they let you be). I appreciate you lending your credibility to the cause of equality for women. How good it was of you to look deeper into your religion to see the truth. And the truth shall set you free!!

  • Teach54 said:

    Another reason to respect this great man! The SBC has lost many members over this stand and others like it. I am a SBC PK who had to leave the denomination because of the narrowness of the “new order” that took over the convention in the ”80s. I am so proud of President Carter for taking this stand to draw attention to this injustice in a large denomination, one in which many members follow their pastors without question.

  • Eloise K.Vincent said:

    Dear President Carter,

    Thank you for your courage & wisdom saying what so many know to be the truth. You are truly one of the greatest human leaders of our time. Religion and politics are major sources of our problems in the world today. I personally thank you for all you have given of yourself. You have my deepest respect.

  • josephine roy said:

    Thank you and God bless you, Pres Carter. I am 72 now, and over time, I too have had to leave some traditional affiliations behind. Bless you for having the courage to match your convictions! Even in my teen years, I had serious questions about women’s participation–or lack thereof–in the pulpit & other areas of ministry in the Christian Church. As I studied Church history, it wasn’t difficult to figure out that women were excluded, minimized, and basically disenfranchised in the Church–as well as in parts of scripture–because basic denominational doctrine, and the “recording” and compilation of said verses were done by men! It is the same with other recorded history. We have learned that so many accomplishment & discoveries, made or participated in by women, are attributed totally to men in our history books. It truly is a shame on the leaders of most denominaltions that these beliefs and practices have survived into the 21st Century! I also think it is time to challenge Christian men to stand up, in The Church, for the Godly women whom God has given them! Again, Pres Carter, my husband & I salute you & will continue to support your work & pray for you and the Elders. My you continue serving
    in the name of Christ’s Church!

  • Deborah Leppert said:

    I always did like Jimmie Carter . . . he was the 1st presidential candidate I was able to vote for. A real gentleman and a scholar. Bravo for his stand against religious fundamental bullshit ! !

  • Judith Gooding said:

    A true Disciple of our Lord!

  • Aj said:

    Thank you President Carter for speaking out for our grandmothers, mothers, aunties, & our sisters all over the world. Thank you very much. God bless you.

  • C Barton said:

    Perfect.

  • rabick69 said:

    Jimmy Carter, Americas first female president! Always ready to appease and follow public opinion, if only George Clooney could have run as his VP, a shoo in for a second term. You cannot discount the historical context in which these organizations evolved, they were reflections of the cultures in which they established. Is it salient today, not necessarily but the original intent of the hierarchy was not subjugation or discrimination but rather maint
    aining cultural norms.

  • frank said:

    one of the many reasons i respect jimmy carter soo much is that he is and has been totaly acountable for every thing he has ever done.from the iranian rescue mission that failed(witch he took responsability for it event though crashing the choppers wasent his fault) to his desideing to build habatat for humanity houses.he always practaced what he preached..he has done more in the service of his fellow man then any other presadent/polatision that i know of.

  • Kurt Newman said:

    There are other living Presidents that should weigh-in on this subject. President H.W. Bush, President G.W. Bush, and the present holder of the position President B.H. Obama should all express their views on Women’s Rights and Cite what actions they have taken to alleviate the suffering of women world wide. I expect they will ignore President Jimmy Carter’s courage and regurgitate bland and non-critical diplomatic excrement. Who is making progress on this issue? Who is leading? Who is putting pressure on the neanderthals? What countries’ products should we be boycotting? Who can we help in the fight? Somebody must be organized! Who will step-up? knewman512@verizon.net

  • Julie Kenward said:

    You make me so proud, Mr. Carter – so very proud. After 25 years away from church I returned 8 years ago and one of the first questions I had for my pastor was “What does this church think of women in teaching roles?” I am so glad my pastor pointed to the fact that half his pastoral team were women. Still is. And I have learned much from all of them – both the men and the women.

  • Barbara Wyant said:

    My Mother, who has been dead for 10 years, loved Jimmy Carter. I am sure that this statement by him is one of the many reasons she admired him so much.

  • Sarah King said:

    Thank you so much for this Mr. President. I have always thought of you as a wise, thoughtful and courageous leader and this does nothing to harm my image of you. I certainly wish that the leaders of your former Southern Baptist sect were more able to see the logic and wisdom of this stance and were not so very much interested in retaining their spurious and, as you say, repugnant attitude regarding a woman’s “place” in the world. I could go on but it would be useless in the face of such idiocy so I will merely say again, thank you Mr. President.

  • Joyce said:

    President Carter, I did not approve of your performance as our President. I do approve of what you have said here. In 1975, I became a woman in a man’s job and I worked harder and longer than most men would have done. I was proud of my accomplishments. I am no longer in the position I once held. I do not wish I was back in that position, but I do believe that I should be equally paid for my knowledge and my job skills. Unfortunately, I now find myself in a part of the country where what I do is devalued because of the law of supply and demand – community colleges are churning out a lot of graduates for jobs that no longer exist. And in this marketplace, my knowledge is viewed as equal to those 20 year old grads with stars in their eyes. I know for a fact that the males in this community with my same skills (but probably not my knowledge) make much more than I do. So thank you for your support for all I have learned and done for so many years. It is good to know that there are men that appreciate us – the hard working women (of course, no one would believe that the job I now hold was held by men in 1975).

  • Geoff Strong said:

    Well thought and well spoken Jimmy Carter.

  • Tom Gould said:

    One of my favorite Americans…

  • Joanne Swonk said:

    I have always adored Jimmy Carter for being such an honest and thoughtful person. This current writing of his further convinces me that President Carter is an honorable human being. I guess that’s why I keep an enlarged framed photo of him above my computer. My hat is off to you, Mr. Carter!! Thank you so much for your thought-provoking and insightful remarks concerning women and their human rights.

  • Ann Salzarulo said:

    This personal decision demonstrates true leadership, characterized by Grace, Truth, Love and Equanimity. Jimmy Carter, and The Elders, are providing for us the spiritual leadership this world needs to be liberated from suffering. Thank you for staying focused on what the world needs more than ever. thanks to all of you.

  • Mary Walker said:

    It is so wonderful to learn that the Elders exist! Thank you President Carter! My love and respect for you endures!

  • Massoud Fanaieyan said:

    I enjoyed reading this article and admire Mr. Carter’s courage to put his thoughts into this article and challenge the current believe of the understanding of sacred writings of the world religions.. It is unfortunate that he did not look into the Baha’i Faith or if he did, did not make any reference or took exception to the view of the Baha’i Faith that what he is advocating is one of its principal..

  • Monica Jackson said:

    Sad that it took 60 years and the no longer needing votes for him to voice his opinion.

  • Stephen Sloper said:

    President Carter was truly one of our greatest presidents. Sadly this wasn’t recognized at the time. May God continue to lead him, guide him, and grant him the strength to continue his mission.

  • Marty Wiseman said:

    I have had a negative opinion of Pres. Carter since his days in office. I have just done a 180. Jimmy Carter, you are a great man.

  • Phil Foster said:

    Dear President Carter,

    You were the first President I voted for. It was a choice I take pride in. You did not win that election, but you should have. We might have a different world today, if our country had the true wisdom of your leadership. I have always believed in God, what I have never been able to believe in is religion. God is easy to have faith in, religion, man is what is difficult to believe. As others have said, God is waiting to welcome you to heaven, you truly belong there. But I look forward to a world with you in it, so I hope God leaves us with you for a while longer.

  • C. M. Johnson said:

    May the Lord Bless you and keep you
    May the Lord make His face to shine upon you and be gracious unto you
    May the Lord lift up His countenance upon you
    And give you peace.

    All of which you so richly deserve, President Carter.

  • Mary said:

    I am happy that Mr Carter has laid bare the truth about how the women are viewed in the society. I wish he had done something about his beleif when he had the power to do it.

  • juliette ashmoon said:

    i’m very glad pres. cater has had this aha moment. I had it 50 yrs.. ago when I was 12. my ? is: why has it taken him so long to figure this out?

  • Elly Hood said:

    It’s difficult to leave a church you’ve been with all your life. I left mine when I realized that the Catholic church was not doing enough about the pedophiles in the church and did not seem to have good planning to prevent this in the future. You do not have to be a church member to be a Christian. I have always know that Jimmy Carter was one of those rare truly good persons.

  • Donna Maloney said:

    This is one of the most direct steps that I have seen taken in a very long time towards peace and equality. I praise you Mr. Carter for making this hard and important decision.

  • Charles Heineke said:

    Thank you, President Carter, for taking such a bold stand. It’s encouraging to see someone of your stature make such a daring and costly move. I internally took a stand for womankind in 1993, and made that stand public in 1997, by publishing my inspirational essay, “A Love Letter to Womankind, From Your Awakening Brother, Mankind” (A tribute and an apology to Womankind, from Mankind. It’s available on the “Womankind” page at my blog, http://www.thedoorway.org/blog/, should you wish to read it. It’s about time!

  • Joseph Patterson said:

    For Jimmy Carter to sever ties with the religious organization with which he has been associated with for most of his life because of their position on women’s rights took both honesty and courage. Although I didn’t vote for him when he ran for president, I have great respect for him, a respect that was never higher than it is at this moment.

  • Dianne said:

    Equality means for EVERYONE…nothing to do with religion, just human nature. We are all homo sapiens.

  • Bayhuntr said:

    I often trash evangelicals and people will always assume I’m attacing religion. Stand Jimmy Carter next to an evangelical like Rick Santorum, there is no comparison, President Carter is a wonderful, decent, carting man, Santorum and his ilk, are self righteous and arrogant people, who’s only goal is to force their selfish, ignorant and narrow view of the world on everyone in the nation by the force of government.

  • JunApayart said:

    Thanked God that in the Salvation Army, women were given a total equality with that of men. William Booth once said, “my best MEN are WOMEN. There are no barriers for women to be given the privilege to be used by God in serving Him. If there are women who felt you are restricted and had experienced to be discriminated by your Church or society, the Salvation Army is widely open it’s arms to receive you with gladness as Christ himself has no respecter of person. There maybe some women here who felt God’s calling in your life in whatever your age right now, be quick to respond, God needs you in the Army of God. God bless.

  • Mary Hassanali said:

    President Carter will go down in history as one of the greatest presidents of USA, who had the conscience to stand up and speak on moral and ethical issues without being intimidated by the so called political, social and religious pundits. I am glad I am sharing this earth with a great man such President Carter. God Bless him.
    Mary Hassanali
    Calgary, Alberta

  • Debra said:

    The views and beliefs you described Mr. Carter are the exact spiritual beliefs, views and teachings of Gnosticism, which Christ and his fellow male and female Christian disciples and children of God before the fourth century, has you previously stated. Gnostic from the Greek word “Gnosis” simply means seeker of knowledge. The “KNOWLEDGE” you just shared, was known as “The Right Way to Live” the “TRUE KNOWLEDGE”, until “Patriarchal Rule” took hold. The darkness of the ego, the need for power, dogma, fear, and “The Way to Every Wrong…GREED”, which has led us down this path of self-destruction and inhumane treatment of not only women and children, but of this planet! I truly believe that if we would all just take heed to this most divine message by being the spiritual beacons of light that we are and shinning that light in order to dispel this “very dark truth” by speaking out, just as our former President, Mr. Jimmy Carter has done or by just sharing this truth with others in order to promote the changes that are desperately needed for the greater good of us all and the future generations to follow. ***SEE THE LIGHT, THEN BE THE LIGHT!!! Love, Blessings and Peace to Us All!!!

  • Veda said:

    This is very interesting. I am glad people are coming out of their comfort zones to stop the injustice around the world. Hope we all find a way to play a part in it. If there is a will there is a way.

  • Debra said:

    ***(edit to previous comment) The views and beliefs you described Mr. Carter are the exact spiritual beliefs, views and teachings of Gnosticism, which Christ and his fellow male and female Gnostic Christian disciples and children of God before the fourth century practiced. “Gnostic” from the Greek word “Gnosis” simply means seeker of knowledge and truth. The “KNOWLEDGE” you just shared, was known as “The Right Way to Live” the “TRUE KNOWLEDGE”, until “Patriarchal Rule” took hold. The darkness of the ego, the need for power, dogma, fear, and “The Way to Every Wrong…GREED”, is what has led us down this path of self-destruction and inhumane treatment of not only women and children, but of this planet! I truly believe that if we would all just take heed to this most divine message by being the spiritual beacons of light that we are and shinning that light in order to dispel this “very dark truth” by speaking out, just as our former President, Mr. Jimmy Carter has done or by just sharing this truth with others in order to promote the changes that are desperately needed for the greater good of us all and the future generations to follow.
    ***SEE THE LIGHT, THEN BE THE LIGHT!!!
    Love, Blessings and Peace to Us All!!!

    P.S.: Mr. Carter , I am sure Mattie is also very happy with what you wrote and is smiling bright!!!

  • H D Luessenheide said:

    I voted for him twice, yet never considered myself to be closely affiliated with either his politics or faith. But Mr. Carter has always held my esteem as a truly honest statesman. This proclamation raises my view even higher. I hope his stature lends more authhority to this view of equality. Thank you very much, Mister President.

  • tracey said:

    The title to this article is so very wrong. He has not lost his religion, but has shown the courage to stand up and defend his own faith and humanitarian beliefs.
    The equality of women of all ages should be something that is encouraged and instilled in all walks of life in all parts of the world and it so good to see that he has had the courage and desire to do so.

  • Debra said:

    I have one last comment. To clarify: The word “Gnosis” is Greek meaning “Knowledge” and “Gnostic” simply means a seeker of divine knowledge and truth about GOD!!! That is All!

  • shahrokh makhanian said:

    Thank you, President.
    … The world of humanity is possessed of two wings: the male and the female. So long as these two wings are not equivalent in strength, the bird will not fly. Until womankind reaches the same degree …
    http://info.bahai.org/article-1-9-1-9.html

  • Claudiovello said:

    Great person express great ideas and visions.If the world would be ruled by more women ,probably would be better.Thank Jimmy

  • Jorge M Hernandez-Valdés said:

    I’m glad that Jimmy Carter had the courage to step out of the box. Karen Horney almost 100 years ago challenged Freud’s theory of women envied men’s sexual superiority. Women had proved that in today’s world they are competing with men in every field they had been deprived since the beginning humankind. Congratulations, President Carter for your realization!

  • adrienne mcfayden said:

    Sadly, President Carter, thought claiming to know the Bible, does not. I don’t know what the Southern Baptist convention leaders said, but I do know that scripture never says women are inferior to men, nor that they should be “under them.” It clearly state in Genesis 3 after the fall that the equality that existed before the fall would be fractured and as a result woman would desire her husband’s role. Christ commands husbands to love their wives as he did and gave his life for. This is not the, do as I say or else love. It is self sacrificing love. No woman in the early days of the church were apostles, as those position were reserved for the 12 disciples of Christ and later Paul. On the day Jesus was resurrected, he appeared not to men, but to women. They were the first to see him and he commanded them to tell the men. Anyone can take the scriptures out of context and use them for their own selfish gain. Truly walking in the full knowledge of the saving grace of Jesus, his ultimate sacrifice for our sins, will illuminate the Gospel and put an end to this tit for tat.

  • Joycentral said:

    I intuitively felt that President Carter was a genuine leader during his time as President. He has proved it since he left office.

  • Nancy OConnor Morrison said:

    Mr. President, I have always had the deepest respect for you as a man, our leader, and as a humanitarian. This brings you to an even higher level. “May the Lord bless you & keep you, may His face radiate upon you, may He be gracious unto you & bring you peace.” There is no doubt that when you meet Him in heaven, His first words to you will be ‘Well done’.

  • Marina Whitman said:

    I can imagine what this decision must have cost President Carter, which is also why his eloquent statement is so powerful. When will people stop using the Bible to bolster their own un-Christian views?

  • Denise Pettit said:

    My respect and admiration for President Carter has just increased ten-fold.

  • Karole Brown said:

    Women are over half the world population. They have cared for the children and the home forever. They can do the same for our world. We need all of us, not just the chosen male half, to build our governments, families, our earthly home, and care for one another.

  • Brenda Comb said:

    Thank you, President Carter, for your life-long commitment to human rights and your recent stand against the injustices practiced against women in the name of religion! I am wondering whether the political machine is a more powerful higher power in politics and religion, than our Heavenly Father, if religious and political leaders (male and female) feel they must wait until they, “…no longer need to worry about winning votes or avoiding controversy…” to do what is right? Until this barrier can be broken, the subjugation of women will continue!

  • Jan said:

    I often said, when Carter was president, that history would judge him as one of our best presidents. Now, I know I was right.

    Now if we could only get the world leaders to listen to their elders…

  • Rebecca said:

    As a Canadian and a fellow Christian who has lived overseas for many years, I just want to say how much I respect President Carter for his courage and grace.

  • Rick Conger said:

    Thank you President Carter. I too after 53 years in a SBC church serving as a teacher and deacon for 20 of those years, left the Baptist church along with my wife. This reason along with 5 other reasons is why we we left and we are so glad to have found the Christian Church (DOC) after so many years.
    Rick Conger

  • Adele Krusz said:

    Thank you, President Carter. You are one of the greatest humanitarians the presidency has produced.

  • ToniLynn Blackman said:

    YAY! Yay! Yay! Yay!

    I am so proud of this man! Finally, a true leader has fully understood and spoken out publicly ~ and most importantly, taken action ~ regarding the horrible impact religion has upon women, and the use of the bible as a tool of subjugation and abuse! Mr.Carter, I’m going to be hugging you all day in my mind!

  • deLake said:

    Finally! What hope there is for the world when men and women feel free to say it like it is

  • Carolyn Mitchell said:

    President Carter your words and actions have touched me in so many ways. I personally know fundamentalist women who believe they are of less value than the males in their life. Even today they are being taught this in churches in the US! Thank you for taking a stand for what is right, again.

  • Nancy Carnegie said:

    Now this is what I call a man of character, strength and decent, honest morality…..this decision must have been heart rendering for him – KUDOS MR. PRESIDENT! Sent with love and admiration.

  • Janelle said:

    In I Corinthians 14:34 the Bible commands us that women are not to speak in the worship services. As a matter of good sense, that does not mean that they cannot sing. They are not to lead the worship. They are, however, not thought of as inferior. They were created to be a help mate to man, not a slave. Men are commanded to love women and treat them kindly, etc. I think, as does our congregation, that is it fine for women to teach Sunday School classes to kids that are below the age of accountability. Women speaking in the adult classes are a integral part of our Sunday School classes. Carter is just trying to take it to the extreme and say that Christians endorse the Islamic treatment of women. That is in NO WAY true. It is a terrible thing for him to say.

    I have always thought, next to Obama, that he is the worst president ever. He gave away the Panama Canal and ruined our economy. Luckily, Ronald Reagan fixed Carter’s mistakes. Perhaps he now doesn’t belong to Christianity with his thoughts. It is not for me to judge. He has shunned Christianity, however. I doubt if this will get posted.

  • Carl said:

    Should have done this 30 years ago Jimmy. Not like this is exactly new stuff here. As usual, you decided not to take a stand when it mattered, waffling in the background while those of us who saw the SBC for what it was were fighting (and mostly losing). Entirely unimpressed by your decision. Just shows how blind (or cowardly) you’ve been all this time.

  • Jerome Weingart said:

    This is an extraordinary statement and example of moral leadership by President Carter. I would like to see it redistributed throughout all of our media. It is so relevant as counterpoint to the nastiness and intense bigotry of our times, including that of many men in Congress and in organized religion. If we were to substitute “black”, Hispanic”, “poor”, or “gays and lesbians” for “women” in his statement, it would be equally relevant and powerful. Thanks, Mr. President.

  • Karen Campbell said:

    I cannot imagine the grief this will cause you and your family, but I thank God that you have the courage to do this. Remember, there will be many of us-practicing fundamentalist Christians-who support you and this righteous position

  • Babak NAMI said:

    There is a religion which specifically teaches equality of sexes as one of its “tenents”; The Baha’i’ faith.
    Interestingly enough, Baha’u'llah, the prophet founder of Baha’i’ faith heralded his message from Iran (of all places) 165 years ago.
    Mr. Carter who knows quite a lot about Baha’i's has for some reason forgotten to include this information in his essay.
    Nevertheless, a worthwhile and thought provoking piece.

  • Mitch Mosler said:

    Yet he still sides with the democratic party which supports gay marriage and abortion. Both of which are detestable unto the Lord. We must pray for the Lord to open his eyes to his truth and turn from our wicked ways and then he will heal our land.

  • Nikki H said:

    I am so impressed with President Carter. He is a true man of God and exemplifies his Christianity in both his words and deeds.

  • carolyn said:

    Thank you, Mr President, for knowing that we are ALL human beings no matter the race, creed or sex of an individual!! I’m truly sorry that you had to leave your church to show how strongly you stand for what you believe in….

  • Susan Harrington said:

    Dear Mr. Carter,
    Thank you so much for stating so well what God has always told us – that He loves us all, equally. That He gave his son for us that whoever believes in Him will have eternal life. How can the leaders in some of our churches not understand that by the practice and tolerance of inequality of the sexes, they are denying the will of God? All people, men and women, have gifts and talents, and should have the rights to use them equally.
    Thank you for your message – and for your wisdom – God bless and keep you.

  • Rod Terrell said:

    Christ stood up for women long time ago!

    Galatians 3:28 (New International Version)

    28 There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

    I’m not impressed with Jimmy Carter at all!

  • Bert Reid said:

    President Carter has earned the deepest respect and admiration from all of Humanity!

  • Stephen Guenther said:

    I am speaking as a non-religious, non-Christian American that holds Constitutional separation of church and state as a necessary division, especially in our troubled times. Having said that, President Carter is the most Christian man I have ever seen in public putting his faith in practice, and not shoving it down the throat of others. President Carter is by far my favorite President in my lifetime, and I am proud to say that when I doubt this countries ability to right itself after that craziness we’ve endured since his tenure as President, he speaks, and I again think the path to greatness is peace, love and understanding. We are all better for having this great man in our lives.

  • Zita Angelo said:

    Surely a man for all seasons. I remember so clearly when President Carter would answer questions at his press conferences, he was always so thoughtful and apolitical. What a contrast to the other 99.99% of politicians, and such an inspiration for living a genuine spiritual life. Thanks for showing yourself once again as a true mensch (person of integrity and honor)!

  • John Nagella said:

    God bless President Carter for his faithfulness,commitment and practice in Christ Jesus teachings in all walks life, especially for his courageous stand on realizing women Rights across the Globe.

  • Ginger Hallbeck said:

    Words well spoken and much needed. Thank you, Jimmy Carter.

  • Carol handy said:

    Mr. Carter,
    You mentioned a number of God’s Spokemen, Jesus, Moses, Muhammad & others. You might like to know about His latest Divine Messenger, Baha’u'llah, Prophet/Founder of the Baha’i Faith, Who assures us that all the things your heart longs for, are the Will of God for this age and will come to pass: Universal Peace upheld by a functioning world federation of nations, the recognition of the Equality of Women & Men, the essential Oneness of all revealed Religions and the Oneness of all His Divine Messengers inspired by the Same Holy Spirit, the essential agreement of Science &Religion, (resolving once & for all the argument between Creation versus Evolution), the Oneness of Humanity and the Elimination of Racial, Religious & National Prejudice, a Spiritual Solution to the world’s Economic Problems and the Joy of the assurance of a personal, never-ending eternal journey towards God! “Happy trails!”

  • Mary Putana said:

    It took too long for that idiot to mature. Praising him now is inappropriate.

  • lee said:

    I remember the attention that Carter’s “Born Again” faith drew before he was elected in ’76, noticed what a free thinker his daughter, Amy, is, and wondered when he might start to open up…

    Each major religion is riven with pre-scientific, plantation-model thinking, and that includes Buddhism & Taoism. These systems didn’t just keep women in their place, they kept the labor of generations of families bound on the plantations, bound to nation-states & empires. The labor was predominantly male, and was the most direct input for production & war.

    Energy is replacing labor, first on the farm and now in the factories (robotics, AI). Even an American law school grad’s upward mobility is disappearing due to AI, w/ the legal discovery process being automated, replacing hundreds of junior partner positions at the big firms.

    The lateralized societies of the future won’t need that plantation model in order to function, so the religions are going to have to change right along with the people that employ them. The core Buddhist canon is a largely humanist tract, non-sexist, non-violent & not much in the way of superstition, same for the core Taoist scripture (the latter aprocrypha introduced the rules).

    One way to understand this is that the historical Buddha went off the plantation. When the plantations & nations adopted Buddhism, the baloney crept back into the system.

    Jesus was another one who walked out… the reason the NT is so heavily burdened with doctrine isn’t b/c of Jesus, but b/c of Paul.

    “No sooner had Jesus knocked over the dragon of superstition than Paul boldly set it on its legs again in the name of Jesus.”
    ~ George Bernard Shaw

    https://www.facebook.com/BuddhistHumor/posts/357439284362629

  • Carolee Shepherd said:

    Ever since President Carter put solar panels on the White House, I have admired and respected him for his true vision, his unswerving dedication to the principles of equality for all, and for living his faith. He is once again demonstrating the true teachings of Christ. Thank you for your courage to shed light on what so many are willing to leave in darkness.

  • Jesse said:

    YES, YES, YES.. Thank you Mr. Carter, and all who endorse his statement. I stand with you and all women whose time has more than come for equality in all relations of society, in this world, on this planet, Mother Earth. I thank my God for your courage, your vision and presence of you and your wife, Roslyn, in our world Mr. Carter. Thank you.
    PS: You are still my favorite President.

  • Myrtle said:

    God Bless you Jimmy Carter. I am so proud of you and your infinite wisdom and compassion. Please continue your world leadership in political fairness and moral compassion.

  • Gregory A. Clark said:

    The conclusion is laudable, but the reasoning is flawed. Discrimination and slavery are not “twisted *interpretation(s)* of the word of God.” The interpretations are correct. Clearly and unambiguously, they are the Word of God. Instead, it’s the Word of God–and God Himself–that are twisted and “repugnant.”

  • Jim Middleton said:

    He misrepresents by cherry picking Bible verses in order to paint conservative Christianity as putting women down or categorizing them as second class citizens.

    Jimmy Carter has done this before. So him doing so is nothing new.

    And his declaring his authority to speak to this matter as being a Sunday School teacher is quite outdated. It has been a very long time since he served in that fashion.

    Mr. Carter creates a straw man by taking a particular verse out of context and then painting an entire Christian denomination with a very broad brush. Typical behavior of a person driving and agenda.

    I encourage you to read the entire section on your own. You tell me how any part of the entire section places anyone, man or woman, over anyone else.

    Eph 5:21-33

    21 Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.

    22 Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. 24 Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.

    25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her 26 to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, 27 and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. 28 In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 29 After all, no one ever hated his own body, but he feeds and cares for it, just as Christ does the church— 30 for we are members of his body. 31 “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.” 32 This is a profound mystery — but I am talking about Christ and the church. 33 However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.
    NIV

    And by the way, I worked with Jimmy Carter’s humanitarian organization in East Africa when I was doing outreach to treat River Blindness in the Southern Sudan.

    Does my interacting with his organization make me an expert on Mr. Carter in the same way he pretends to be an expert about conservative Christianity?

    The accurate term, a term that reflects the ENTIRE teaching, the concept that is in CONTEXT, is “mutual submission”.

    Since I graduated with my Bachelor’s degree in Bible from a Southern Baptist college I can also assure you the Southern Baptist do not teach, NO conservative Christian denomination teaches, that Eve is responsible for sin entering the world and therefore she is some kind of second class citizen.

    Mr. Carter is quite inaccurate in painting such a picture.

    Southern Baptist and conservative Christians believe that if Adam or Eve had not sinned, I would have. If sin had not entered God’s perfect creation the day I was born, I would have brought sin into the mix.

    Jesus Christ didn’t die because someone else sinned. Jesus Christ died because I sinned.

    The person that held the hammer in his right hand and the nail in his left which driven through the hands and feet of Christ to nail Him to His Cross were MY hands. I held the nail and swung the hammer.

    Mr. Carter being off base and agenda driven is again not new. He either intentionally or wishfully is grossly misrepresenting Biblical truth and the foundation off both the Southern Baptist denomination and conservative Christians in general.

    Shame on him.

    Your choice what you wish to believe the Bible says.

    I hope you believe what it actually says, not what Jimmy Carter needs it to say to further some kind of agenda

  • Tony O said:

    Even a stopped clock is right twice a day. Mr. Carter’s moment of right is seen in this article. His ineptitude as a president resulted in his NOT being re-elected. I wonder if all of you reveling in his accomplishments would like to see your current mortgage at a Carter-era 22%. It’s amazing how the passage of time can blur intensely painful memories and enhance the mediocre into some sort of shangri-la. Or maybe it more of a misconception of “I agree with what you are saying now, so you were always good and right”. While I believe Mr. Carter had good intentions, he was not capable of doing anything to realize them, and this reality makes him a forgettable president.

  • Lexy said:

    He should have had this epiphany 40 years ago when it could have made a difference. If he had said this as President of the United States, what an incredible impact it could have made. Instead he says it now as a weak brother who has nothing left to lose.

  • Anita said:

    “The position of women in a society provides an exact measure of the development of that society”.

  • Christian Marcotte said:

    Thank you President Carter!
    You have always been and remain an inspiration to us all.
    Your demonstration of personal integrity leaves me teary eyed and I pray that
    this great Nation and the world sees more leaders with this internal fortitude.

  • lee said:

    “Paul was the first corrupter of the doctrines of Jesus.”
    ~ Thomas Jefferson

    “No sooner had Jesus knocked over the dragon of superstition than Paul boldly set it on its legs again in the name of Jesus.”
    ~ George Bernard Shaw

    “Paul created a theology of which none but the vaguest warrants can be found in the words of Christ.”
    ~ Wil Durant (Historian, Philosopher)

    “Fundamentalism is the triumph of Paul over Christ.”
    ~ Wil Durant (Historian, Philosopher)

    “The new testament was less a Christiad than a Pauliad.”
    ~ Thomas Hardy

    “Paul substituted faith in Christ for the Christlike life.”
    ~ Walter Kaufmann (Professor of Philosophy, Princeton)

    “Where possible Paul avoids quoting the teaching of Jesus, in fact even mentioning it. If we had to rely on Paul, we should not know that Jesus taught in parables, had delivered the sermon on the mount, and had taught His disciples the ‘Our Father.’ Even where they are specially relevant, Paul passes over the words of the Lord.”
    ~ Albert Schweitzer

    “My long-time view about Christianity is that it represents an amalgam of two seemingly immiscible parts–the religion of Jesus and the religion of Paul. Thomas Jefferson attempted to excise the Pauline parts of the New Testament. There wasn’t much left when he was done, but it was an inspiring document.” (Letter to Ken Schei [author of Christianity Betrayed and An Atheists for Jesus])
    ~ Carl Sagan (Scientist; Author)

    https://www.facebook.com/BuddhistHumor/posts/357439284362629

  • DeeJay said:

    What an amazing thought and leader. Thank you for loving your wife, daughter, sisters, aunts, mother, nieces, cousins enough to be a voice for them. Thank you for being a shining example for your sons, brothers, cousins, uncles, nephews to show what being a man is. Thank you for taking the honest pathway in your salvation by showing what God’s Love means, what pain and subjugation tradition holds, pulling back the curtain and exposing the darkness of all cultures. Thank you for standing for what you believe in, what your heart knows is truth even against your long faith. Now THAT takes a Man of God and a Man of Action. You are my hero!

  • Carol Mann said:

    Thank you for your sacrifice of leaving the SB Convention in exchange for your public stand for and about women, globally. When I spent a few minutes with President Carter, in his Oval Office, in September of 1979, to seek his support for a major threat to Title IX, along with other women athletes, I saw in his eyes the kindest, most sincerely loving human being I had ever met. My observation of him has not changed. His thoughtful and magnificent stand for women is a masterpiece that I hope will receive more attention. I am sending it to many, including press people.

    And thank you to the Elders to which he referred. Let them be heard in every valley, every corner, every alley and in every little girl’s heart until ….

  • joymurra@yahoo.com said:

    I am all for equal rights, particularly in the church, but I have often questioned why Pres. Carter was a southern Baptist when he obviously doesn’t agree with their teachings? Now it looks like he’s left Christianity to be a part of a secular group called the Elders. The Elder’s are heavily involved in gay marriage rights and pro-abortion ideologies. I understand that many people are for these issues, but I would just like to say, if we are talking about equal rights then what about the rights of those who can’t defend themselves?(speaking of the unborn fetus of coarse)

  • Rebecca Whyley said:

    Absolutely agree with all respondents here. Have always had enormous respect for President Carter. His letter reflects great compassion, understanding and a desire for truth and fairness in all things.

  • Samuel Mahaffy said:

    Once again Jimmy Carter speaks with spiritual integrity and as a prophetic voice in our times calling us to justice.

  • Les Smith said:

    I have nothing to add to the previous comments except to express my utter disbelief at the closing comment of our former President. There is no way that the teachings of Mohammad call for “proper and equitable treatment of all the children of God”.

    That is insane! First of all, Mohammad did not consider Christians or Jews, both male and female, to be “the children of God”. Secondly, his own treatment of women was, to put it mildly, “self-serving”. Finally, Mohammad’s adherents are only following both his practice and teachings in the wide-spread subjugation of woman found in any Muslim nation.

    I know Jimmy Carter is a student of the Scriptures, but I can only conclude he is ignorant of the teachings of the Koran. He does a great disservice to the cause of woman’s rights by holding up Mohammad as one of their champions. The worst thing that could happen to females is the furthering of his cause or teachings.

  • louislapierre said:

    Question: Should we ordain women? Better question: Should we ordain men? Love and forgiveness to you all.

  • Antonio said:

    Thanks for not posting my thoughts from yesterday, this site is a one sided liberal slant. I should have known when they are all kissing Carters Tush. This is why you are hated so much.Pardon me for adding a little truth to this sloppy forum.

  • Seth Le Leu said:

    Dear President Carter. You may have lost a lifelong connection to a denomination that has lost its way. But you have gained a closer identification to Jesus of Nazareth by your courage.

  • Antonio said:

    My appologies, you finally posted. Thanks for the rant. I do commend Carter for sticking up for womens rights as long as they’re not aborting and killing almost full term babies for self centered selfish reasons.

  • Suzan Nolan said:

    What a brave and spot on commentary by Jimmy Carter. It is time for religions and churches to acknowledge that their tired practices from days gone by need to change. Beginning with the Catholic church, which is the bastion of patriarchy, and still does not ordain women and insists they not use birth control. This is ludicrous, not to mention the worn out tradition of not ordaining women. It is time for churches and religions to wake up to the asset they have in women by granting them full rights of participation and reproductive freedom. Jimmy Carter has nailed this. This is why so many women have decided to practice their own type of spirituality, one that is not dictated by men.

  • Jan Fitch said:

    Mr. President, you are, and have always been, a hero.

  • Jon Griesheimer said:

    God Bless you Mr.President. this is one of the many reasons that I have chosen to be a United Methodist

  • Peter Ford said:

    President Carter,
    I would like to get involved. There have been occasions when I have been blessed with the ability to help people see past their biases to embrace a broader wisdom that lifts humanity. The trick is to convince a person that the short term personal power trip is no where near as satisfying as bringing everyone up. Jesus gave us a clue to being spiritual with interpreting the commandments as loving God, ourselves, and our neighbors and suggests being a light. The african proverb that says “when you educate a man, he is educated but when you educate a woman, you educate the nation”. Our mothers, sisters and daughters are the paths to peace and strength.

  • Almaz Negash said:

    Thank you President Carter – very few people in your stature would dare to invoke religion in defense of women. You are truly an inspiration. Almaz

  • C said:

    Wonderful! Thank you so much.

  • Nancye Clark said:

    I always knew Jimmy Carter followed the teachings of Jesus…..Thank you Mr. President for showing everyone WWJD.

  • jane said:

    excellent honest piece however being honest and fair is not generally well practiced by men or their compliant women (YES!)
    i left the church for the same reason as have millions of women.. has it changed anything?

  • Dennis Hardwick said:

    A friend of mine just emailed me this article written by President Carter. As president, Mr. Carter was roundly critized for telling it like it is. Years later, we as a society know deep in our hearts that he was right. Again, he is standing up for what is right, the same position that Jesus would be taking if He were walking among us. If we all followed Jimmy Carter’s lead, the world would be a better place for all. May God continue to bless Jimmy and those who are impacted by his compassion and love for all.

  • Audrey Smith said:

    He is the former president of whom we should be most proud! He daily serves for the benefit of both women and men. I am so happy that I met him in the 70s and was a Carter delegate to the Democratic Convention!

  • Sami Faltas said:

    Well said, Jimmy Carter. But the title is very poorly chosen. Did the person who wrote it bother to read the article?

  • Deborah Spaltmann said:

    My respect for President Carter will never cease, yet I am humbled by this – yet another – demonstration (and the extent of it) of his commitment to perpetrate fairness and human rights.

  • Susan said:

    Many religions postulate gender inequality. Stepping away from your religious church of choice, as a recognized past head of state and a man, to take a stand for what is contrary to these doctrines for a greater appreciation to women and what you believe in your heart to be right, requires tremendous courage and is a noble act. Thank you so much, President Carter!

  • Tautua said:

    former president jimmy carter is right on, but, way too late, this is a necessary piece to stay relevant on the women issue. however, so many relevant women in the world today, and you have to leave your affiliation to the southern Baptist to be brave? I think if you did this before you were elected president, I would salute your bravery. You might consider your association with the middle east as a relevant disassociation because of their attitude with women, that will really test your bravery. I hope you can be so eloquent in severing those ties as you did with the association that helped you become “the President of the USA.

  • Shannon Maguire said:

    Thankyou for your honest, well researched, intelligent and ethical stand on this issue. It is sadly rare that a member of the group that benefits and gains privilege from a paradigm of oppression takes a such strong, eloquent and honest stand on behalf of the oppressed group. Thankyou for being willing to relinquish male privilege to honour your dedication to the equality and equity of men and women. Thankyou for using your position of white, educated, male privilege to speak out against the structures of oppression of women inherent in a patriarchal society. I admire and respect your integrity in honouring your truth in the face of the inevitable rejection of and from the religion and organisation that was so important to you for most of your life. You have earned my respect and appreciation and that is a hard thing for a man who has been in your position and benefitted from your level of privilege to have earned. Humbly and proudly, thankyou…

  • Rev. Rick McGinniss said:

    As a pastor and father of three daughters, I agree with President Carter’s conclusion. However, I believe this statement …

    “The truth is that male religious leaders have had – and still have – an option to interpret holy teachings either to exalt or subjugate women. They have, for their own selfish ends, overwhelmingly chosen the latter.”

    … unfortunately falls into the same kind of one-size-fits-all thinking that caused the problem in the first place.

    I know many fine pastors who believe scripture limits the roles (not the value) of women. They believe this not because they are selfish but from a sincere conviction that this is the best interpretation of those scriptures and, therefore, is God’s will. I know this to be true because I used to be one of them.

    I am not saying that there are no male pastors who operate out of selfish motives in this matter, just that it is extreme to put all of them in this class. It is simply not true.

  • Jonah Nickolds said:

    Jimmy Carter is awsome. After six decades with the church, he is willing to seperate from his church in order to advance the cause for equality. I think he was one of our best presidents, he tried to bring about energy independence for the USA and would have succeeded, with a second term. For Jimmy, equality is more important than religion, are you listening Michelle Shocked?

  • Rev. George Darling said:

    As a retired Umited Methodist Elder I wholeheartedly concur with President Carter’s views and long for the day when all persons are accorded respect and treated with dignity. I would also add sexual identity to the list of those currently being maligned and persecuted.
    As a popular song of a few decades said, “When will we ever learn”

  • Hal Gaymon said:

    With all respect, Mr. Carter, the Bible never teaches that women are inferior, but neither does the Southern Baptist Church. The Bible does teach that men and women are different and have different roles each of which completes the other. Not unequal but different. God values all human life equally and treasures each person. The truth is that your dissatisfaction with the Southern Baptist Convention is actually based in your opposition to their holding to the teaching that Jesus Christ is the “truth and the life and no man comes to the Father but by me.” Those are Jesus’ words not mine. That does not mean every one must have the same religion, in fact Christianity is not a religion, it is a relationship with the living Lord, Jesus Christ. I do not know how God makes Himself known to all men, but I have no doubt He does, and we will all answer for how we have responded to that knowledge. I do know that I am incredibly humbled by the thought that the God of the universe loved me enough to give “His only begotten Son” to die in my place so that I could be reconciled to God. Not by anything I have or could have done, but by His immeasurable Grace and Love. Those who demean a person for their race, sex or any other reason will answer to God. You might note that God did not address Eve as the guilty party, but rather held Adam perhaps most guilty for his lack of leadership.

  • Ceci Sommers said:

    What a truly wonderful man. He got all the hostages out of Iran alive and no American lives were sacrificed. He was reviled and “W” and his team are still admired by the far right. Despite their massive mistakes and the loss of so many lives.

  • Debra </