Bachmann's 'devout' husband

Michele Bachmann has certainly drawn a media spotlight in recent weeks since she announced her candidacy, as some wonder whether she's just the media's "flavor of the month.” We've talked a little bit about how the media has handled her faith with mockery or puzzlement, and it's a bit depressing to see little serious coverage of her beliefs so far.

The Washington Post's style section looks at Bachmann's husband’s views of homosexuality and how Bachmann's own views could be similar. The basic gist is that Bachmann's husband has said some kinda strange things about homosexuality and since Bachmann has said she is submissive to her husband, she probably believes the same ideas, and it all stems from her religious beliefs.

Starting at the top:

In an interview last year with a Christian-radio talk show, Marcus Bachmann, a therapist who runs a faith-infused counseling center here, compared homosexuals to “barbarians” who “need to be educated, need to be disciplined.”

If you’re going to make this the shocking bit to get people into the piece, why not follow up further down in the piece to offer the full quote and context?

They share a bond born of a mutual religious awakening in high school and college, a deep faith in an especially conservative form of Lutheranism, and a common abhorrence of homosexuality.

What is a "deep faith" and how do you measure that? What does "especially conservative" mean and what are you comparing it to, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America? The church appears again later in the article.

The church belongs to the highly conservative Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod, which, in explaining its views on homosexuality, points to the passage in Corinthians where the apostle Paul says to former sinners, “That is what some of you were.”

Again, what is "highly conservative" and is that particular interpretation of that Bible passage out of the mainstream of many Christian churches? Besides, what does conservative mean? Politically? Theologically?

A devout Lutheran, Marcus Bachmann grew up on a dairy farm in Buffalo County, Wis., with his parents, who had emigrated from Switzerland, and his two older brothers. He became a born-again Christian in high school.

Here we go, that word that kind of gives us the same feeling you get when you scratch fingernails on a chalkboard: "devout." What does devout mean?

The rest of the piece mostly looks at the strange coming together of the couple and how they felt God leading them together. Bachmann’s candidacy has led some reporters to uncover things she has said that might seem fairly uneventful for its context (a Christian conference, for instance) but that might seem unusual for a presidential candidate. There's little exploration of other ways her beliefs might impact her policies, so let me ask you: What questions do you still have about Bachmann's faith? What angles do you think reporters could explore?

Image via Wikimedia Commons.

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