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The Failings of Fundamentalism

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Fundamentalism is an espresso shot of Christianity—strong, bitter, and undiluted.

Fundamentalists believe the Bible should be interpreted as literal fact, not metaphorically.

To them, it is God’s direct word to humanity and the ultimate earthly authority. And so

fundamentalists follow the Bible with unwavering certainty, as if it were God himself, and

press their interpretation of the book upon society. But the certainty at fundamentalism’s core is

unwarranted, leading them to wrongfully ignore their oppositions’ own valid opinions and the

potential gains that come with them.

In the eyes of Christian fundamentalists, their actions are protecting God’s will;

they are upholding the laws of the Supreme Being, thus keeping society on the right path.

Fundamentalists’ core beliefs “[are] encapsulated under the rubric of ‘the inerrancy of

Scripture,” the idea that the Bible is God’s perfect word, the clearest expression of God’s plan

for humanity (Marsden). With this comes the concept of Biblical literalism, that “the historical

events recorded in the Bible…are accurate,” not parables or allegories—they believe God spoke

plainly and clearly, not in confusing metaphors (Creationism Has). By corollary, if the Bible

is the literal and inerrant record of God’s plan for humanity, and if God is humanity’s ultimate

authority, then humans ought to obey the laws of the Bible. By this reasoning, the Biblical norm

should be enforced over human laws, and society’s deviations from this norm, such as “the

assaults on traditional standards of family and sexuality…[posed by] changes in standards for

public decency, aggressive second-wave feminism, gay activism, and challenges to conventional

family structures,” shou...

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.... For argument is not about who is right, but what is learned as a

result and how these new truths can benefit society.

Works Cited

"Creationism Has the Greater Basis in Science." Roanoke Times [VA] 6 Mar. 2005: 3. Infotrac

Newsstand. Web. 18 May 2014.

Hebrews. Holy Bible, New International Version. N.p.: Biblia, 2011. BibleGateway.org. Web. 22

"How evolution can save lives; Junk medicine." Times [London, England] 11 Feb. 2006: 4.

Academic OneFile. Web. 19 May 2014.

Marsden, George. "The sword of the Lord: how 'otherwordly' fundamentalism became a political

power." Books & Culture Mar.-Apr. 2006: 10+. General OneFile. Web. 22 May 2014.

"MIT Finds Key To Avian Flu In Humans." Space Daily 7 Jan. 2008. General OneFile. Web. 18

Riascos, Norma Enriquez. "Fundamentalisms: a real threat." Women in Action Apr.

2007: 30+. General OneFile. Web. 18 May 2014.
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