Why Haley Barbour pardoned men who murdered women

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Erin Nanasi is an avid underwater basket weaver, with a penchant for satire and the odd wombat reference.
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On the January 15th episode of Mad Women on Blog Talk Radio, the special guest was former evangelical Christian minister Jason Childs. Mr. Childs attended Liberty University, knew Jerry Falwell, and believed he was destined for Heaven because of his beliefs.

one bad man madmikesamerica.com

After his divorce, Mr. Childs realized that he would no longer be allowed to minister to the flock, and chose a drastically different line of work: he became a truck driver.

Driving around the country and meeting people from all walks of life had a profound effect on Jason Childs, and he began seeing America very differently than the way he had been taught. He saw people, not Christians, not heathens, not the unworthy, he just saw people. His heart changed, his mind opened, and he turned from the evangelical teachings of Liberty University and became an activist against the bigotry and homophobia he had once embraced.

On Mad Women, we were discussing Governor Haley Barbour’s mass pardon of over 200 convicted felons in the state of Mississippi. Some had served their time and were released on parole, but some had not. All in all, Barbour issued 203 pardons, including 17 to convicted murderers. There is an odd pattern to some of these, and an odd pattern to the eight men Barbour pardoned in 2008.

In 2008, Haley Barbour pardoned eight men, all of whom had been convicted of murdering either their wives, ex wives or ex girlfriends. These men included Michael Davie Graham, who stalked his ex wife for 3 years before shooting her to death with a 12-guage shotgun while she waited at a traffic light, Clarence Jones, whose ex girlfriend had filed multiple assault and trespassing charges against him. Jones waited for her in her apartment and stabbed her 22 times, and Jimmy Lee Avera, who shot and killed his estranged girlfriend while she was pregnant and in front of her two children.

Barbour’s most recent pardons also include 2 men who murdered their wives. David Glenn Gatlin drove nine hours to shoot and kill his estranged wife while she held their infant son, and Anthony McCray, convicted of shooting her to death after an argument. Haley Barbour said in an interview with Fox News that these were “crimes of passion”, and the men pose no threat to society, in fact, he’d let them baby sit his grandchildren.

Jason Childs pointed out the direct link between Dominionist teachings and domestic violence, and showed the reasons behind Barbour’s seemingly insane actions. Dominionists believe that everything in the Bible is true and is to be taken literally, including the sexist, misogynistic and quite frankly, violent way men are to treat women. Women are property, chattel, often worth less than a cow. Why? Because of Eve. Women are necessary for propagation of the species, but that’s about it.

Haley Barbour clings to this dogma with both hands. And that is why Barbour thought nothing of wiping the record clean for men who were convicted of murdering women. In Haley Barbour’s world, women don’t really matter. Much like the Quiverfull movement, Dominionists do not have respect for women, or see them as equals. Understand, all these murdering, battering men had to do in exchange for these pardons is tell King Haley Barbour that they accepted Jesus as their lord and savior. Boom, new life. And with a pardon, your record is expunged, meaning all these extremely violent and abusive men are wandering around, and no one has a clue about their crimes.

Why do I use “king” to describe Haley Barbour? Because as Jason Childs pointed out, that’s exactly how he is acting, like a king. Dominionists and some fundamental Christians believe the “laws of God” outweigh the laws of man. In other words, if the Bible says all women are damaged because of Eve, then that is the law they follow. Quiverfull is filled with these people: home schooling so their children learn only the laws of God, never the laws of man. From a comparative standpoint, this is very similar to the Sovereign Citizen movement, in relation to the laws they follow versus the actual law of the land.

We have at least one actual Dominionist running for president this year: Rick Perry. Perry dreams of a theocracy where David Barton history is taught in public schools right after prayer time and creationism class. Rick Perry craves a state religion, filled with the laws of God, not the laws our founding fathers wrote. Rick Perry wants to destroy this country, and impose Dominionism and Biblical law upon us all. Think of him as a smaller, but just as insane, Haley Barbour.

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Posted by on January 17, 2012. Filed under COMMENTARY/OPINION. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry
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10 Responses to Why Haley Barbour pardoned men who murdered women

  1. Chris Buescher Reply

    January 17, 2012 at 3:50 am

    This is somewhere between disgusting and terrifying. Other than attempting to remove Barbour from office, is there anything that can be done to halt this? I doubt what has been done can be reversed, but I hope this is just my ignorance of judicial law shinning through and not the actual state of things.

    • Erin N. Reply

      January 17, 2012 at 7:52 am

      This is his last term, and I guess he thought he’d leave Mississippi 203 “gifts” before it’s over. If you read about these latest pardons, you will find that some of the men worked at the governor’s mansion as part of their detail. They were watched by guards, they were never unsupervised, and Barbour believes their “stellar” behavior at the mansion indicates that they deserve a pardon. Haley Barbour is a dangerous combination of religious fervor, ignorance and power.

  2. Bill Formby Reply

    January 17, 2012 at 12:07 pm

    Erin, actually a number of these pardons are attempting to be overruled by the Attorney General of Mississippi on a technicality that the governor is supposed to notify and get in put from the courts which originally handed down the sentences which he did not. A major obstacle is that the pardon essential was an End Of Sentence (EOS) for many of the prisoners which meant that they did not have to leave a forwarding address. More troubling are the predatory sex offenders who had their offenses expunged and do not have to abide by the Sex Offender Notification Act.
    It really makes me wonder what would have happen if they had let Lillith stay around instead of Eve. Any thoughts?

    • Erin N. Reply

      January 17, 2012 at 2:12 pm

      I hope he succeeds. As to the Lillith versus Eve question-I don’t believe in any of it, I really think it’s an excuse for men to belittle, demean and sometimes abuse women. If Lillith had stuck around, though, I’m guessing she would have driven a 3 inch heel through the head of that snake, then gone out for a margarita.

  3. Ali Reply

    January 17, 2012 at 5:19 pm

    Don’t think that just because he’s Catholic, Rick Santorum is any less of a Dominionist than Rick Perry. In fact, pretty much the entire Republican presidential lineup consists of Dominionists, with the *possible* exception of Ron Paul.

    Scary, innit?

    • Erin N. Reply

      January 17, 2012 at 8:32 pm

      Ali-I know. That’s my next festive subject. Catholics “get there” differently, but all the same beliefs exist. Thanks!

  4. Jimbo in limbo Reply

    January 19, 2012 at 7:05 pm

    American Taliban. No difference.

  5. Steve Reply

    January 20, 2012 at 10:17 am

    I suspect Ron Paul is a Christian Reconstructionist which is a type of Dominionist. He wants to destroy secular government so churches can take over those roles. In effect, establish church-states.

    “The notion of a rigid separation between church and state has no basis in either the text of the Constitution or the writings of our Founding Fathers.” – Ron Paul

    “The Founding Fathers envisioned a robustly Christian yet religiously tolerant America, with churches serving as vital institutions that would eclipse the state in importance.” -Ron Paul

    http://www.lewrockwell.com/paul/paul148.html

    For more on Dominionism please check out: http://lefthemispheres.blogspot.com/p/dominionism-series.html

  6. Jason Reply

    March 19, 2012 at 10:52 pm

    Haley Barbour was wrong but what bothers me is that the title implies that if they murdered men then it would be OK or worse if it was women who murdered their husbands it would be OK..

  7. Edna Birch Reply

    March 23, 2012 at 1:48 pm

    http://www.nj.com/gloucester/voices/index.ssf/2012/03/gov_chris_christies_pal_has_a.html

    Chris Christie’s Pal has a Pardon Problem by a 68 year old grandma who supports the victims of those murders and their families. Romney is going to have a problem vetting Christie because of his connection to Barbour if you read the article, and J Bush is responsible for the Stand Your Ground Law, that allowed the murder of that young beautiful child.

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