Responding to the rule changes in the House of Representatives that eliminate the use of “gendered” terms like “mother” and “father,” the Rev. Franklin Graham has accused top House Democrats of trying to deny God’s authority.
“House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Democratic Congressman James McGovern announced a set of changes to House rules to enshrine what they call gender-inclusive language and stop the use of so-called non-inclusive words,” Graham said in a Facebook post Sunday. “Can you believe that they actually propose to strike the use of words including father, mother, son, daughter, aunt, uncle, husband, and wife?”
After noting that “these proposed changes will be voted on soon after the House starts the new session, which starts today,” Graham shared a Bible passage from the Book of Genesis declaring that “God created them male and female.” According to Graham, the push to eliminate gender-specific language “is shaking a fist in the Creator’s face, trying to deny His authority.”
“If those claiming the name progressive are allowed to have their way, we won’t even recognize this nation in a very short time,” he warned. “Let your Representative in Congress know that you want them to vote no to this ridiculousness.”
The House of Representatives officially voted on the proposal Monday, which was part of a broader package outlining the rules for the chamber in the 117th Congress. The vote came down along party lines, with all Democrats voting in favor of the package and all Republicans voting against it. Because Democrats have a narrow majority in the House of Representatives, the rules package passed and will remain in effect for the duration of the 117th Congress.
Graham’s post also included a link to House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy’s response to the changes. “This is stupid. Signed, --a father, son, & brother,” McCarthy said.
McCarthy shared a screenshot of the rules, which called for replacing the words “father, mother, son, daughter, brother, sister, uncle, aunt, first cousin, nephew, niece, husband, wife, father-in-law, mother-in-law, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, stepfather, stepmother, stepson, stepdaughter, stepbrother, stepsister, half brother, half sister, grandson, or granddaughter” with “parent, child, sibling, parent’s sibling, first cousin, sibling’s child, spouse, parent-in-law, child-in-law, sibling-in-law, stepparent, stepchild, stepsibling, half sibling, or grandchild.”
Additionally, the rules package called for eliminating the use of the word “Chairman” to address the heads of committees in the House of Representatives and instead use the word “Chair.” The rules also amended a portion of the House’s Code of Conduct outlining how members charged with or indicted for crimes must resign from their committee assignments. The phrase “submit his or her resignation” is replaced with “resign” and all other references to “he or she” are replaced with “such Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner.”
While Speaker Pelosi has embraced the removal of “gendered” language in the House of Representatives, she refers to herself as a “mother, grandmother (and) dark chocolate connoisseur” on her Twitter profile.
The removal of “gendered” language was not the only action taken by the newly sworn-in 117th Congress that made headlines across the U.S. On Sunday, Rep. Emmanuel Cleaver, D-Mo., closed a prayer by saying “Amen and a-woman” instead of the traditional “Amen.” Graham weighed in on this as well.
“Democratic Rep. Emmanuel Cleaver from Missouri opened the 117th Congress in prayer yesterday, but he closed his prayer by saying ‘Amen and a-woman’,” Graham explained in a separate Facebook post Monday. “The word ‘Amen’ simply means ‘So be it,’ and that’s why it is said at the end of prayers. It has nothing to do with gender.”
“Regrettably, even prayer is no longer sacred to some in our halls of Congress,” Graham concluded. “One thing is obvious–we need more of it. Amen!”