MInTheGap

Standing in the Gap in a Society that's Warring with God.

Can a Woman Be President of the United States?

August 30th, 2007 Visited 9603 times, 2 so far today
This entry is part 1 of 5 in the series Woman President

We live in an interesting time– not unique, but interesting.  For the first time in history it appears as though a woman has a good shot to be on a major party ticket for the office of President of the United States.  I say not unique because there has been a 25 women candidates for President in the years that this country was around.  There were four of them in 1996 alone! Vice Presidential candidates number more than I want to count.

The question we will be looking at in this new series is not should a woman be President, but can she legally be President.  To do this, we’re going to look at:

  • The Founders point of view
  • The Language in the Constitution
  • Equal Rights Amendment
  • Political Weapon

It should be a fascinating study.  Since I don’t believe any Supreme Court would ever take a woman that was duly elected out of office, it’s my suggestion that if we find that she should not be in office (not a foregone conclusion) they should take up the issue before the primaries rather than after.

Series NavigationWhat Did the Founders Think of Women? >>

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  • mandikaye says on: August 30, 2007 at 9:44 am

     

    Are you seriously suggesting that there may be a reasons that a woman should not be President of the United States?

  • MInTheGap says on: August 30, 2007 at 10:41 am

     

    I am seriously asking the legal question of “can a woman be the President of the United States”. I am not asking should a woman be President of the United States. That’s not the answer I seek at this time– I’m seeking the question whether a woman can be the President. It can’t just be assumed she can.

  • Amanda says on: August 30, 2007 at 11:49 am

     

    “Can” and “should” have two very different meanings – which you just sort of clarified. That difference is not clear in your post. The title, “Can a Woman Be President of the United States?” is different than the question you ask at the end of the post when you say, “Since I don’t believe any Supreme Court would ever take a woman that was duly elected out of office, it’s my suggestion that if we find that she should not be in office (not a foregone conclusion) they should take up the issue before the primaries rather than after.”

    Subtle difference, but a difference nonetheless.

    “That’s not the answer I seek at this time– I’m seeking the question whether a woman can be the President. It can’t just be assumed she can.”

    Why not?

  • MInTheGap says on: August 30, 2007 at 12:25 pm

     

    Because, like any office, there are qualifications that someone has to meet. For example, it’s clearly spelled out that the President has to be at least 35 year old and has to be a born citizen, but there are people out there that believe that the language of the document (the U.S. Constitution) implies that the President must also be a male.

    Keep in mind that when the Founders (and this was going to lead off my second post on the topic) first created the government they believed that only men who owned land had the right to vote. Would you expect someone with such beliefs to also think that they would vote for a woman? The culture was totally different at the time. There were no female heads of state (besides queens) and I’m not sure they intended that their should or should not be.

    Furthermore, this could all be cleared up by an amendment to the Constitution that could clear all this up– but I highly doubt that would happen.

  • Amanda says on: August 30, 2007 at 12:37 pm

     

    Why aren’t you also questioning the right of a woman to be in Congress?

    It seems to me that the actual wording doesn’t give you a case at all:

    Qualifications of a President (from Article 2 of the Constitution):

    “No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President; neither shall any person be eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States.”

    So who does the constitution say is a Citizen of the United States? Let’s look at the 14th amendment:

    “All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws. ”

    It’s a no brainer to me. Women are legal citizens of the US, and as such have every right to be the President of the United States.

  • MInTheGap says on: August 30, 2007 at 12:43 pm

     

    However, Article 2, Section 1 also says:

    The executive Power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America. He shall hold his Office during the Term of four Years, and, together with the Vice President, chosen for the same Term, be elected, as follows…

    In fact, the office of President is the only one that I’ve found where the pronoun “he” is exclusively used. If you look at the House and Senate (which I intend to do), what I’m believing you’ll find is that they are never referred to with a generic “he”, but instead referred to as “Senators” or “Members”. So, then you have to start asking the question is it generic, what were the founder’s intentions, and go from there.

  • Amanda says on: August 30, 2007 at 12:47 pm

     

    There’s a simple explanation. Senators or Members is plural; the office of President isn’t. There’s only one President. It makes sense to use the personal pronoun there. In their minds, only a man could be President, so “he” was the obvious word choice. But later amendments make it clear that women are equal citizens of the United States. And the wording of the actual qualifications uses the word “person,” which clearly leaves room for women. Especially in light of the 14th amendment.

  • MInTheGap says on: August 30, 2007 at 1:30 pm

     

    That may solve which word was used, but it doesn’t solve what the Founders thought. The question is, does the 14th Amendment change “person” to include a woman, or does the implication of male remain?

  • Charley says on: August 30, 2007 at 8:46 pm

     

    Wow…Way to open a monstrous can of worms! That takes courage! My guess is you will get record comment response on this topic.

    But it’s a conversation well worth having, and sadly, not one that has ever been addressed seriously. Don’t forget to include Biblical statutes, principles, and examples in your consideration. (And before people mention Deborah…she was there because the men didn’t step up to leadership like they should have, and even then, she performed a very careful role.)

    Better put the body armor on as you continue this!

    Charley
    Get Serious Blog
    HomeDiscipling Dad Blog

  • Terri says on: August 31, 2007 at 7:08 am

     

    hmmm…isn’t this the same logic use to opress black people for years? The founders didn’t give them any rights or privileges either.

    MinTheGap….this, combined with the question that I asked you the other day seriously leads me to think that you think women are slightly inferior. It is a subtle theme that seems to creep into your posts.

    If you don’t think women are inferior, I would never know it from your topic choices and the consistency with which you question what women should be doing, wearing, thinking,…etc.

    Are you just trying to be controversial and goad people, or is this really what you think and believe?

  • MInTheGap says on: August 31, 2007 at 8:12 am

     

    Charley, well, I’m technically not going into “should” a woman be President. If I were, then I could go into the Biblical statutes, principles, and examples. (For example, very few people know that there was actually a Queen of Israel for a short period of time when the king died and next heir was too young to take the throne!) So, I’m simply asking a clinical question regarding the Constitutional qualifications that are necessary to be President.

    Terri– This whole thought started from a conversation that I was having in a car with my father and a friend on Monday. The discussion centered around the legality of it, and the question was poised “Can a Woman be President.” I mentioned that I had read something during a previous election cycle where a group of people were objecting to the possibility of a woman running on Constitutional grounds. I never have found it since, but have understood the arguments.

    So, to me, it was a fair question– and I jokingly said that “some member of the media should take it up before Hillary becomes President, it gets taken to the Supreme Court, and they throw her out!” So, I decided to take a look at it.

    Am I trying to be controversial? Yes and no. I do try to challenge the common thinking processes and make me/us look at something that we just take for granted.

    Goad people? Not necessarily. I did not expect this many comments on this post– I thought I did a good job of saying could not should. I have to confess that as a blogger we want comments, but I wasn’t doing this for comments. I was intellectually curious about the topic.

    Really what I think believe? That women are inferior? No. I think they’re different. I think that God gave people specific roles and we are at our best when we follow His design. There are also exceptions to general stereotypes about the sexes (the physically strong woman, the weak man, etc) and my qualifications for the office of President are the same regardless of sex, race, creed. I’m not out to oppress anyone, but to try to help people be the best they can.

  • Amanda says on: August 31, 2007 at 12:29 pm

     

    Terri –

    I’m really glad you said what you did. I had the same thoughts as you, but couldn’t express it as nicely as you did.

    After talking to MIn, I genuinely believe that he didn’t bring up this topic because he thinks women aren’t capable of the Presidency and that they shouldn’t be in the Office. He was sincerely questioning the legality of the issue.

  • Musicguy says on: August 31, 2007 at 1:30 pm

     

    Wow! I can’t believe that this is even an “issue” in the year 2007. Some men just want to drag their women around by the hair and keep them barefoot and pregnant in their cave.

    Not even our mewly conservative supreme court would consider this ridiculous argument.

    Amanda- I think he has you snowed. There’s way too much on this blog that would make even the most mild mannered feminist cry her eyes out, all under the guise of, “People were asking me, so I let them know.”

    And yes, people in power used the same rhetoric in regards to the law and the bible to justify slavery for a great many years. I can’t believe we’re actually going back to that place when it comes to women.

    Sad.

  • terri says on: August 31, 2007 at 1:38 pm

     

    “but to try to help people be the best they can.”

    so….your form of help is to try and make sure that women don’t overstep their bounds, as you have interpreted them, by pointing out all the ways that they aren’t measuring up and all the things that they shouldn’t be doing?

    It’s a red herring.

    You have been very careful in the words you use and the way you respond to questions, but it doesn’t really take much discernment to get to what is really behind it all…which makes me sad. The church spends so much time focusing on traditional gender roles (I am not speaking about sexual orientation) and getting so up in arms about it, that it loses its focus for the proclamation of the gospel and welcoming into the kingdom the people for which Christ died.

    Miriam, Deborah, Ruth, Rahab, Tamar, Lydia, Mary, Abigail, Mary Magdalene, Priscilla, the four prophetess daughters in Acts, and many more litter the pages of the Bible. Virtuous women, Scarlet Women, in-between women…all used by God in many unconventional, non-traditional ways to further His purpose.

    A woman can be president. God appoints all leaders, right? I guess that would also include Margaret Thatcher, Golda Meir, Indira Gandhi, Corazon Aquino…and many more. They have ruled as prime ministers and presidents. SO…if the Sovreign God, who appoints all rulers, has deigned to use women to accomplish His purposes, then I certainly think there is no prohibition against it.

  • Musicguy says on: August 31, 2007 at 1:38 pm

     

    “We hold these truths to be self-evident that all MEN are created equal.”

    Yeah, Min, I guess you are correct. The Declaration of Independence is only referring to people who are considered “men.” I guess it’s safe to assume that the Constitution, which also utilizes only male nouns and pronouns, follows the same thread. Everyone else is not created equal and should not have the same rights and privileges as the men.

    Thanks for helping me to realize this little-known fact.

  • MInTheGap says on: August 31, 2007 at 2:06 pm

     

    I’ll comment to Terri in a new post.

    Musicguy: Oh yeah, and that “endowed by your Creator with certain unalienable rights” means that Evolution is Unconstitutional too.

    You can add that to the things you learned today.

  • Musicguy says on: August 31, 2007 at 2:33 pm

     

    that will involve a whole other post as well. Why is it that evolution and belief in god cannot coexist??

  • MInTheGap says on: August 31, 2007 at 3:21 pm

     

    I’m sorry– bit too worked up with my previous reply.

    Obviously the whole question that we’re asking here has little bearing on the Declaration since it’s not a founding document of the current form of government. Therefore, it bears as much weight as the Articles of Confederation or the Federalist Papers– at most the Declaration can do in any Constitutional question is tell the mood of the founders. Even then, the definition of MEN is hard, since we know that the Founders respected slavery, and would have a problem reconciling “all men created equal” with “some men = 2/3 a man.” So, either it’s grandiose language not intended to be parsed, or it’s supposed to be limited inclusive.

    I think that you’ll find that if you all will bear with me though this series (I have already written the next two parts) you will see that I do not come up with a novel conclusion, but it’s the process that is important here. People spent a lot of time and work. I suppose I could have just did the whole thing here, but that wouldn’t have taken you along on the journey or forced you to ask yourself the question yourselves– to go through the exercise.

    Again, like I said in my post today, part of the reason I write is to make you think and reason through why we think and do things.

  • MInTheGap says on: August 31, 2007 at 3:23 pm

     

    Oh, and to your other question, it depends on who the G(g)od is and what you believe about him.

  • Musicguy says on: August 31, 2007 at 4:02 pm

     

    My g(G)od/g(G)oddess/c(C)reator/s(S)upreme being/e(E)tc./etc./etc would be the unseen force that set the universe in motion. But also the topic of another post entirely.

  • Arthur says on: August 31, 2007 at 8:27 pm

     

    Terri Writes:
    SO…if the Sovreign God, who appoints all rulers, has deigned to use women to accomplish His purposes, then I certainly think there is no prohibition against it.

    By this logic, if the Sovereign God who appoints all rules, has deigned to use Hitler and Stalin to accomplish His purposes, then you must certainly think there is no prohibition against it.

    MusicGuy Writes:
    Why is it that evolution and belief in god cannot coexist??

    I do not base my faith in Christ upon the evidences either for or against the theory of evolution. I recommend such faith to anyone.

    Why do we involve ourselves in senseless debates about the laws of the land which are passing? The whole of human acheivement is but a mockery compared to the simplest works of the Most High God. It is better that one spend one’s time seeking the Truth, if one has not yet grasped it. It is better for those who posess the Truth to share the Truth with the lost and the seekers.

    God does not lie behind the constitution of the United States of America. Neither is He to be found in existential nihilism. He is not found by chasing after money and power. Those who seek fame and attention will not find God in it. Neither is God found by holding one’s self in high regard. God is found by seeking the Truth of His Word with a humble fear and trembling.

    The great unseen force that set the universe in motion is greater still than you imagine because He also created the universe our of nothing. He has many names, but He can only be foundby one way. Jesus, the Christ is The Way, The Truth and The Life. All those who came before Him were theives and robbers. All other names which claim to be He are false, they teach you to exalt yourself and your own ambitions. They teach you to rely upon your own, flawed understanding. Their doctrines are contradictory. Their ways lead to darkness, death and destruction. There is no truth in them.

  • terri says on: September 1, 2007 at 7:59 am

     

    Arthur…that’s a ridiculous analogy. Unless, of course, you really believe that a woman in leadership is just as horrible and evil as Hitler or Stalin. I do think it’s telling that that’s the analogy that you come up with.

    If you read through the bible you will find God doing all sorts of things that didn’t go by the prescribed “rules” as understood by the culture at the time and even the Law.

    God frequently uses the unexpected, least likely person to further his purposes……prostitutes, liars, murderers, thieves….the list goes on and on…and that’s not just their behavior before they come to know Him. He skips over the firstborn and appoints Joseph, Jacob, David…etc.

    If you feel comfortable saying that God can only move within the little box that we have created for Him, by all means do so….just don’t be surprised when He overwhelms that little box and crushes it beyond recognition.

  • Arthur says on: September 1, 2007 at 1:00 pm

     

    Well, I was only using that analogy to illustrate the point that perhaps it’s not the best way to judge who should or should not be a world leader based strictly upon who has been in the past. If God apoints all leaders, as you mentioned, then He appointed Pol Pott. Does this mean that this is the sort of candidate we should allow based upon God’s actions in history?

    Not at all of course! Just because there have been women leaders in the past that God has allowed or even annointed does not specifically mean this is the type of candidate we should consider for presidency today.

    That’s all I’m trying to say. I’m not saying Hillary can’t or even shouldn’t be president, I’m simply trying to point out that we cannot base our ethical guidelines for presidents upon past world leaders.

    As for my OWN political convictions? I don’t have any at all. I’m not a Democrat nor a Republican. I don’t plan on voting anytime soon because I don’t particularly believe in Democracy at large. My opinion on politics is leave it for the world and those who place their hope therein. The Gospel will not be aided nor hindered by worldly systems of government. Christ is the King, and I am a son of the Most High God. He’s in control now, not the US Government.

    So to answer your suggestion: No, I don’t believe that ‘a woman’ in leadership is just as horrible and evil as Hitler or Stalin. Just Hillary! (Just Kidding… I had to throw that in there.) As I wrote, I couldn’t care less who is President. It will not change the outcome that was written long ago. Even if the Anti-Christ himself were president (and he will be eventually) it would not stop me from doing the work God has created me for.

  • MInTheGap says on: September 4, 2007 at 9:08 am

     

    Is it true that God appoints all leaders? It is an interesting side question. I know that according to Romans 13 “The kings heart is in the hand of the Lord” and that God often brings to power people to do His bidding good or bad, I just can’t put my finger on the verse that says that He appoints all leaders. I’m sure you can help me out there.

    I agree with your premise, Arthur– there is a standard out there that should be easy to find. When God literally chose two leaders for Israel, He went and found Saul and then David. When He chose 12 disciples, there was not a woman among them. If God wanted to make a statement about equality of the sexes as leaders these both would have been good times to do it.

    Terri mentioned some great examples of woman doing things in the Bible, but Deborah is the best shot at getting a person called to a leadership by God, and yet some would argue that she simply got Barak to do what he was supposed to. I don’t believe that I can recall any woman called by God in the Old or New Testament to be a leader. I see them doing great and mighty things, showing great faith, ministering and being an important part in the body of Christ, even giving birth to the Son of God, but I don’t see them called to be a leader. But perhaps I’m missing someone?

    I find your opposition to getting involved in government perplexing, Arthur. Since the commands of Scripture talk about responsibility for those things over which we have some control, and since you have control of the government by your vote, are you saying that your vote is inconsequential, and therefore you do not feel obliged to take part, or are you saying that you somehow find that, regardless of rendering unto Caesar what is Caesars (in this case, participating in government) you choose to disregard this. Do you choose to not say the Pledge, would you comply with the draft, do you pay income tax?

    If I take your logic about not getting involved because the result was written long ago, should I not witness to people since who would be the called was written before the foundation of the world?

  • Terri says on: September 4, 2007 at 1:52 pm

     

    If God wanted to make a statement about equality of the sexes as leaders these both would have been good times to do it.

    Minthegap…..you are talking about the Bible and Chrisitanity which, last time I checked, is of a very different system than world politics. Does your logic then extend to female bosses and CEO’s. Are women allowed to be principals in schools?

    Also, why is it necessary to downplay Deborah and her role? And what is leadership, really? Can’t someone be a leader without a title?

    At least I feel like you are really expressing what you think and not trying to hide it behind vague phrasings and nice wording. It seems as if you’re saying that a woman shouldn’t be president because that doesn’t fit God’s standard. And yet, where does He say that?

  • MInTheGap says on: September 4, 2007 at 3:24 pm

     

    My point was simply this, if we’re to take some passage of Scripture to attempt to discern what leaders God would want, where would we go? Since the Bible is a historical book as much as it is a Spiritual book it’s hard to discern where the culture ends and where the Scriptural takes over. My point is that, other than Deborah getting Barak to go to war for God’s purposes, I don’t find God selecting a woman to be a leader. It may be that because of the culture we just don’t have the records. But there’s a purpose that God has for why He does what He does that I do not know or pretend to know. He selected kings twice, He selected prophets (sometimes women), He selected judges (sometimes women), but why not a woman disciple? Why not a queen? If the problem was about the culture, why would He choose to show His resurrected body to women first (the culture at the time would have not believed the woman, so it would seem pointless)?

    You’re right on when you say that God uses the weak to confound the strong. So, why not choose a woman disciple? Why not choose a Queen? I don’t know.

    Furthermore, this discussion is (again) two different discussions. If you read my latest post you’d see that I do say that a woman can be President. Now, who should we vote for? That depends on the candidate for me. Christianity isn’t about seeking to install God’s Word by edict on the U.S.A. It isn’t my place to say who should and should not be President, but it is my job to vote for the best person, and that could be a woman.

    Isn’t that contradictory to what I’ve already said? No. I know that it sounds it. But you have to realize that when you vote for someone (and believe me, I’ve debated internally who to vote for) that you are held accountable for that vote. In that case, I must choose the best person of my selections– not necessarily the best one that is not available. That may require that I vote for someone with a deficiency in an area that I believe would be in the best leader. But in reality we’re doing this all the time, because the Best Leader is not available.

    Downplay Deborah? On the contrary, I simply state what she did and say what others say. I have not done the research to state an opinion either way.

    Leadership? Servant, Responsible, one to make the tough call.

    Leader without the title? Happens all the time. Most times the true leader is the one at work behind the scenes. (Which makes me wonder what Bill would be up to if Hillary won.) In this case, I’m simply discussing the person with the title.

    I can’t control what impression you have of me. I don’t know how you can have a true picture of who I really am, but I’m open to a chat on Meebo (it’s on the right sidebar) so you can get a better picture. Or you can e-mail me. Ask Amanda.

    Where God says he prefers a man President? The Bible knows no “President” so it doesn’t exist. 🙂 However, I’ve stated the case for one position as far as God preferring men. I’m open to a persentation that presents the opposing view. I’d even let you guest post it here for discussion. Let me know.

  • Arthur says on: September 5, 2007 at 12:53 am

     

    Yes I pay taxes. Giving unto Caesar was a wonderful illustration of the Kingdom because it happened during a time (so appointed by God) when to pay taxes to Caesar was seen as heretical by highly religious Jews. Jesus said it is inconsequencial to the Kingdom of God which is sipirtual.

    No I wouldn’t avoid the draft. However, it does stand to note that I wouldn’t pass the phsyical exam because of my knees and I actualy applied to the Army and the Marines both of which told me to lie on my application or I wouldn’t be accepted because of all the drugs I used in the past.

    Yes, you should definately witness to people. I just don’t see how a vote counts as a witness. If I voted for Bush in 2000 would I be somehow a witness for Christ? I think not. In fact, I have a hard time believing GW is a Christian at all. Or maybe I should say, he looks about as Christian to me as Barak Obama.

    As for control, we don’t have any except over our own will. The rest is in God’s hands and for those who believe, even our will is in His hands. Afterall it is God who is working in us to will and to act according to His purpose. If I witness to my neighbor it is because the Holy Spirit lead me to it and caused me to will it. Otherwise I could have been a witness for Christ without the Spirit, as an unbeleiver. I don’t think God wants people to obey the commandments on the outside if they don’t mean them in their hearts and that’s all we can accomplish in politics. We can make decency laws and laws against gay marriage and abortion but that does not actually stop people from commiting sin.

    People have to choose whom they will serve, either God or baal’zebub. Jesus said “First wash the inside of the dish and the outside will be clean as well.” Notice the order of operations here: first the inside (which is spiritual) and then the outside (which is physial). Also notice the impetus of the actions: Wash the inside (spiritual) and the outside will be clean also (circumstancial).

    MInTheGap writes:
    My point was simply this, if we’re to take some passage of Scripture to attempt to discern what leaders God would want, where would we go?

    Why not just cast lots such as the Apostles saw fit? And yet didn’t God sovereignly act to overrule that decision?

    MInTheGap writes:
    Is it true that God appoints all leaders?

    Romans 13:1 “Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God.”

    But interestingly enough Paul goes on, “Consequently, he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgement on themselves. For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong.”

    Well you can read the rest for yourselves. Suffice to say that God is Good and He alone is my comfort and my shelter, in Him alone will I trust. Neither will I seek comfort or shelter from the world or it’s systems nor it’s leaders, but Trust the Lord for His promises.

    MInTheGap, you’re most recent reply seems much more moderate than those prior to it. I don’t mean to be rude, but unless I’m just seeing things where there’s nothing to be seen, it seems to me that everytime a conversation takes place your ultimate opinion lies right down the lines (the middle ones) of whoever is involved in the discussion. Maybe you should run for office!

  • Arthur says on: September 5, 2007 at 1:14 am

     

    OK, just a little elaboration on my political views here.

    I used to be so liberal that even the democratic party wasn’t liberal enough for me.

    I voted for Ralph Nader in 2000! Ok, let me wipe the tomatos off my face now.

    But here’s the way I see things now: Democrats are for ‘freedom’ meaning the right to abort your unborn children, and say anything you want (except if it’s offensive to anyone else of course, especially certain ‘minority’ groups.) Profanity is included in free speech. War is bad, but when we have to do it we make it quick and small. Guns are the instruments of death and should be outlawed wherever possible. Cigarettes are hazardous for everyone’s health and should be outlawed wherever possible. Women should be treated as more important than men because women have been historically treated as less important. All minorities should be given special treatment because they have been historically oppressed. The freedom of religion really means that you shouldn’t do anything to offend another religion or try to ‘convert’ them. Republicans are evil.

    Republicans are for ‘freedom’ meaning the right to bear arms and serve God and buy cigarettes (and other highly taxed items.) Freedom to live means that no unborn child should be put to death. However, that does not extend to the women and children in the countries with oil and/or dictators. We can bomb them to preserve our ‘way of life.’ Of course, when we ‘liberate’ these fundamentalist countries the first thing we do is liberalize them with feminist propaganda…. ohh no, wait, thats the second thing we do. First we exploit their natural resources and appoint puppet governments. All of this is done in the name of God. Of course, it’s obvious that the god here is not the Prince of Peace who said “Do not resist an evil person.” If our security as a nation is based upon our ability to take what we need and prevent ‘terrorists’ from sucessfully making a single attack while the constitution is eroded by the millisecond, http://usinfo.state.gov/is/Arc.....09281.html then we are certainly NOT secure in our government.

    Our security must come from on high. Our ethics must come from the Holy Spirit within us, not a list of dos and don’ts. We cannot, as Christians, expect the world to behave as Christians by a written law. This is precisely the point of the law: that righteousness cannot be obtained though it, but only through faith in the One True God.

  • Terri says on: September 5, 2007 at 6:15 am

     

    Arthur…I could actually agree with large portions of what you wrote, but not every detail.

    I can’t control what impression you have of me. I don’t know how you can have a true picture of who I really am, but I’m open to a chat on Meebo (it’s on the right sidebar) so you can get a better picture. Or you can e-mail me. Ask Amanda.

    That’s true, you can’t. But here’s the thing. You post frequently. You choose the topics. You choose the particular slant they have. You choose to say the things that you do. So yes, to people who don’t know you, that’s who you are.

    I am simply taking what I read here at face value, though I do feel as if I had to do a little digging to see where exactly you’re going with things.

    When you started this series, you said it was to explore the legalities of a woman being president, and yet the conversation has quickly moved from that arena to what God thinks of women in leadership. I contend that’s really the seed of the conversation, and the rest just a smokescreen for you to put forth what you figured might be a controversial view, without having to come right out and state it.

    I feel somewhat confident in this opinion, although perhaps I am wrong..it has happened before.

    But I would note that you never answered my question about female bosses, CEO’s and school principals.

  • MInTheGap says on: September 5, 2007 at 8:52 am

     

    Arthur, good response. Except you went around one thing I needed clarification on instead of addressing it head on. I wanted to know, specifically, why you choose to avoid some things but choose to do others. In your answer, you reiterated what I understood earlier. So, in an attempt to be more clear, if your reason for not voting has to deal with the fact that you believe that God controls the outcome of these things and it really doesn’t matter what you do, then why do you witness? Or, said differently, what if the Holy Spirit prompted you to vote?

    How about a follow up? If all Christians realize that God is in control of government, should no Christian vote? I an understand the argument that “God would make sure that we’d get the leader that we were supposed to” but it is similar to the “God will save who He chose”. And yet God commands us to witness.

    And you can say “well, I’d be witnessing without the spirit, but that in its ultimate form is an excuse. The command was to go witness, not “Go witness when the spirit moves you.” So, again, why do you choose to do one thing over which God has ultimate control and not do another thing?

    Now, as for which of the candidates to vote for, the efficacy of voting for someone who has “no chance” to win, and the other questions that come when deciding who should get your vote, that’s a subject for another time– a deeply interesting question in and of itself.

    Me, a moderate? I hope not! I’m actually trying to present a balanced view of a difficult subject matter and to reply to comments that yearn to take me off topic. Like Terri is trying to point out, the conversation is supposed to be with the Constitutional legalities of a woman running for the office of President. The comments, however, have devolved into discussing God’s desire for a leader. That’s not wrong, but it is outside of the scope of the post.

    Terri– all I can say to you is to read the rest of the series and see how I treat it in the posts.

  • Arthur says on: September 6, 2007 at 1:36 am

     

    My primary reason for not voting is that I do not see a candidate worth voting for. If a vote is my moral and ethical voice then I am left with a choice between the legal murder of unborn children (notably the republican party has not done away with legal abortion) and war for oil (though I doubt the democrats would sucessfully bring the war in Iraq to an end.)

    Note: calling the war in Iraq a war for oil is to over simplify the situation. Of course I recognize the intricate reasons for the war in Iraq… but in the end I simply don’t agree with the priniciples, morally and ethically, upon which that particular war was founded.

    MInTheGap Writes:
    Me, a moderate? I hope not! I’m actually trying to present a balanced view of a difficult subject matter and to reply to comments that yearn to take me off topic.

    It is precisely your attempt to present a balanced view that I was pointing to. This is the epitome of ‘moderate’.

    Our ‘enlightened,’ ‘modern’ existential view on the world as Americans seems to think there are two sides to every argument. But in reality there are many more sides, that is if ‘sides’ is even an accurate way to think of things. If there ARE to be two sides, then let it be God’s side and all other opinions.

    If the Holy Spirit prompted me to vote I would vote. So far, this has not been the case. Truly, the Spirit has prompted the opposite action, as I have descibed.

    My reason for not voting has less to do with whether God controls the elections and more to do with my view of the futile hope of Democracy. I don’t think that there is a ‘right’ candidate that we are to elect. The world itself is fallen, and therefore there is no leader that can make it all better or even prevent the inevitable demise of civilization and ultimate return of Christ. Bush, a ‘christian’, has done much to play into the hands of the enemy and ultimately bring about the mystery of Babylon. And this is someone who is supposed to be on God’s side. But he cannot stop the end from coming. He cannot stop the rebuilding of the temple, the one world government, currency and religion. He cannot even slow it’s course for all this was foretold long ago.

    It is not my argument at all that “God would make sure we get the leader we are supposed to.” And therefore the analogy you draw between voting in government and witnessing in the Kingdom misses the point entirely. This analogy requires the supposition that the governments of the world are logcally akin to the Kingdom of God. I disagree. I think the governments of the world are apples to the Kingdom’s oranges.

    Why do I choose to witness for Christ and not vote? Because I don’t believe that there is a vote I can make which properly reresents my God. However, I can witness to properly represent my God by the power of the Spirit within me, and by using the Word of the Bible.

    If I vote republican, I may well take a stand against abortion, but I would be takng a stand toward war.

    If I vote democratic, I may well take a stand against war, but I would be taking a stand toward aborton.

    Furthermore both ideologies misrepresent freedom. One would outlaw any mention of One God (in particular.) The other ideology would outlaw any ‘profanity’ such as ‘four letter words.’

    MInTheGap Writes:
    Now, as for which of the candidates to vote for, the efficacy of voting for someone who has “no chance” to win, and the other questions that come when deciding who should get your vote, that’s a subject for another time– a deeply interesting question in and of itself.

    I dont’ find it a terribly interesting discussion to have at all. I’d rather call it a distraction. Better to discuss “Who is my neighbor?” or “What did Jesus mean when he said Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you?”

    As for the devolution of the discussion, I’d say that it is more pertinent to discuss the ethical, theological, and moral implications of a female president and the reasons behind such stances than it is to discuss the legal particulars. Afterall, this is a democratic nation and whatever the masses believe will be written into law anyway. Therefore, if a woman is elected she will not be stopped by questioning the letter of the law of the land, instead there will be an amendment made to allow what the people demand.

    Man, seriously, could you have chosen your words any better? “The comments, however, have devolved into discussing God’s desire for a leader.” I mean… taking this statement alone, do you seriously believe that for a conversation to leave the realm of the secular and begin a God-oriented direction is a step down or a step backward or a step in the wrong direction? Perhaps it was an evolution!

    Look, the last thing I want to do is offend anyone here and that is by no means the motive behind my writing. But sometimes I think that we Christians never stop to think about the fundamental reasoning and core beliefs, based on faith, behind our intellectual stances on ‘hot’ topics. I know I’m pretty gritty in these comments, but I guess sometimes I feel called to stand in a strong position… even if it’s bound to be unpopular.

    And finally, another direct answer to your question. Let’s see if I’ve got the angle you’re looking for this time:

    MInTheGap Writes:
    So, again, why do you choose to do one thing over which God has ultimate control and not do another thing?

    Because the one is commanded in the scripture while the other is excluded.

  • Arthur says on: September 6, 2007 at 2:08 am

     

    OK, Im sorry but I didnt read Terri’s post until after my latest, lengthy, comment.

    Terri Writes:
    When you started this series, you said it was to explore the legalities of a woman being president, and yet the conversation has quickly moved from that arena to what God thinks of women in leadership. I contend that’s really the seed of the conversation, and the rest just a smokescreen for you to put forth what you figured might be a controversial view, without having to come right out and state it.

    Let me say this in MInTheGap’s defense. Regardless of one’s moral and ethical convictions about whether a woman should be president, it is possible for one to muse and discuss the question of a woman’s legal right to be president without the presupposition of an alterior motive.

    That being said, clearly, in discussing such a topic one finds oneself wandering back to one’s deeper, more intensely held, beliefs and convictions to draw their conclusions. One cannot wholly diverge intellectually, one’s prior convictions, based upon long hours, days and perhaps years of musing and discussion from any topic one discusses. However, it is not fair to discredit anyone’s intentions in light of their prejudices, real or perceived, in such matters, certainly not without examining one’s own prejudices about the matter.

    Terri Writes:
    But I would note that you never answered my question about female bosses, CEO’s and school principals.

    Didn’t he? Clearly MInTheGap’s convictions state that a woman should not be in a position of leadership… that implies bosses, CEOs and school principles. However, he also made it clear that he wasn’t making a point about female presidents so much as asking a question to prompt discussion. (success!) The core question here ignores completely the moral, ethical, and spiritual arguments and focuses completely on the letter of the law… and that is precisely what I object to! So what happened here is that I drew the conversation away from it’s original purpose and focused it on what I believe is more important: God. I’m not stating that to be pompous, but only so that you can intellectually diverge the two. If you want to discuss MInTheGap’s questions and/or points, then it’s best to stick to the letter of the law etc. But if anyone wants to call MInTheGap out for those things said in reply to my challenge that the focus should not be on the law of the land but on Christ, they should do so in a manner devoid of accusing MInTheGap of switching topics or of having alterior motives. He’s not the one who changed the focus of the discussion, it was me.

    Sorry MInTheGap! (dude, your alias kills me… have you ever tried reading it? I can never decide whether to read the “M” as a stand alone letter, or as a part of a word. Is it “M – In The Gap” or is it “Min The Gap”?)

    I work for a woman. She is a very good leader as worldly leaders go. Usually she makes just decisions. I am happy under her leadership. Do I think it’s the perfect model of Godly leadership? No! But more than because of her gender, her leadership is flawed because of her worldly perspective. I suppose one could argue that if she had a Christian perspective on life she wouldn’t be my boss at all… she’d probably be at home with children or teaching at a school, or on the mission field somewhere… though I groan just to write such ideas because I know they are just a couple, sterotypical, possibilites, and that, if misunderstood, I might sound like a close minded conservative who does nothing but push people away from Christ. But I’m far from close minded.

    I must retire to my bed. Sorry if my literary diarreha has brought anyone to boredom… I promise to keep quiet for a while to make up for it!

  • Terri says on: September 6, 2007 at 6:34 am

     

    “Didn’t he? Clearly MInTheGap’s convictions state that a woman should not be in a position of leadership… that implies bosses, CEOs and school principles.”

    That’s exactly my point. It’s clear, but he just won’t out and out say it.

    “I suppose one could argue that if she had a Christian perspective on life she wouldn’t be my boss at all… she’d probably be at home with children or teaching at a school, or on the mission field somewhere… ”

    You groan to write that? I groan to read it!!! My husband and I have moved heaven and earth for me to stay home and raise our kids until they were school age. I do the wife/mother thing all day every day. I don’t do it because I would feel like a failure as a woman if I didn’t do it. I do it because we a real family working together towards a goal of loving each other and raising productive, healthy kids who know they’re loved and that there is a God in Heaven. I do it as a person…not as a “woman”. I do it to give my kids the stable home that I never had. My motivations have very little do with “being a woman”.

    It is the linking of narrow expectations and obligations to a person’s gender that is at issue here. You can find certain references in Scripture to a “woman’s” role, but they are few and deal directly with the church and the husband/wife relationship. Each would take many pages to deal with and the ways in which the principles are abused. I won’t go into that here.

    However…those few references are taken and applied in areas that Scripture never touches on. Since when does being a woman mean you can only be a mother, teacher or a mmissionary? What if you’re barren or single? WHat if you’re an incredibly talented musician or engineer?

    This type of thinking lays a heavy, unscriptural burden on women. Usually, in the same places where this view is taken, a just as stereotypical view of men exists. Men who are more sensitve, intellectual, and could care less about sports suddenly feel as if they are somehow less manly.

  • Arthur says on: September 6, 2007 at 10:29 am

     

    Well I salute you as a good mother. How many little blessings do you have in your quiver?

    See my blog for more on this topic as I cannot bear to continue monopolizing this comment string.

  • Caleb says on: October 10, 2007 at 3:29 pm

     

    You bring up a point that I have been wondering for a very long time, and quite frankly I am suprised that this hasn’t been a bigger issue. Certinly the founders ment that a woman can not be president, and although you are not asking wheter or not they shoud I belive that to properly analyze the founders intentions you have to do that very thing. It is clear in the bible that Man was to Rule over Woman and not the otherway around. the founders knew that and thats why it is worded the way it is. Also the equal rights amendment does not abridge this fact is clearly states that “Section 1. Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex. ” Equality of rights under the law well the office of President was never worded as an equal right for everyone. It is just for men.
    “Section 2. The Congress shall have the power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article.

    Section 3. This amendment shall take effect two years after the date of ratification.”
    Do I think that women don’t have anything good to say? Certinly not but I don’t think that they should or can be legaly “The President of The United States of America and Comander and Cheif of the Army and Navy.
    No Offense. 🙂

  • Gregory says on: January 30, 2008 at 8:21 pm

     

    I am suprised at how theological this conversation has become. This is not a question of the Biblical appropriateness of women to lead men. It is one of Consitutional interpretation. It is a fact that the masculine pronoun is used exclusively for the President in the Consititution. The question is: did the authors of the Constitution mean to refer only to men or were they using the masculine pronoun to be inclusive of men and women? In the English language “mankind” can refer to men and women. “He” can refer to both genders. Many today use the “he/she” thing but that would not have been done by the authors of the Consitution on the 1780s. Here is my position- the authors of the Constitution probably never imagined a woman President. It was not in their cultural world view. That does not mean that they intended to deny women the opportunity to become President, nor does that mean that we today must understand the Consitution to do the same.

  • Arthur says on: January 31, 2008 at 10:26 am

     

    I’d say it’s a moot point.  As though modern America, determining that the founding fathers did not intend for a woman to be president would bow the knee to the will of the founders?  Not at all, instead, whatever is decided about what the founding fathers intended, modern America will do whatever the major political and/or social movement of the time dictates.
    If we are to expect American society at large to follow the principles of leadership as outlined in the Bible, we must stand on the principles laid out in the Bible and not the constitution.  However, I don’t think it’s Biblical to expect the world at large to accept and follow the principles of the Bible.

    Arthur’s last blog post..Debating the Atheist – Dinesh D?Souza

  • James Crary says on: August 10, 2011 at 11:00 am

     

    In looking at the Constitution it is clear that, as it stands now, no woman can be president of the United States. The reason being Sections 1, 2 and 3 of Article II make it very obvious, by the use
    (twenty times) of the masculine pronouns, “he” and “his”, that the drafters intended that only a man could be president. The drafters’ intent is further evidenced by the fact that they only gave men the
    right to vote. Yet another point for this is who among the drafters would have thought that a woman could be Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States?

    Just as it took a Constitutional amendment to give women the right to vote it will take another one to give women the right to serve as president.

  • Ben says on: August 16, 2011 at 10:29 pm

     

    From what I’ve read so far, it seems as if people are strewing away from the initial question: “Does the United States Constitution permit a woman to be President?”

    From my point of view, it shouldn’t matter whether you’re a man or woman. I think all people are created equal. To say that a woman cannot be President solely based on the fact that she’s a woman, is extremely sexist.

    What God has done in the past and what he will do in the future, has no bearing in government. I truly believe in the separation of church and state for one reason: the day we let religion have a place in government decisions is the day when every religion says “That’s not what my religion would want”, therefore members of the Muslim faith would feel as if they live in a country where the Muslim faith is disputed, assuming that the decision the government made was in favor of the Christian religion.

    Back to the initial question. The Constitution does not clearly state that a woman cannot be President, therefore, a woman can be President. Any meaning that anyone takes from anything in the Constitution that is not CLEARLY EXPRESSED, is a matter of personal opinion, and therefore does not have any merit. In order for a woman to be banned from the Presidency, the Constitution would have to CLEARLY EXPRESS it.

    • MInTheGap says on: August 17, 2011 at 11:51 am

       

      Did you read the entire series, or decide to comment based on this single post. I believe that it is more than just Christians that have questions about a female President and it does go back to the Constitution referring to a “he” instead of “he or she”. However, I believe that if you had read to the end, you would have seen the conclusion drawn that the President can be a she and I have a great bolded statement there: that the government of the United States is not a church.

MInTheGap

Standing in the Gap in a Society that's Warring with God.

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