Jane Fonda was born in New York City and grew up there and in various parts of upstate New York.
Fonda was raised in a non-religious home, though her paternal grandparents were Christian Scientists. She says she was raised an atheist, though one doesn’t get the sense that atheism in particular was indoctrinated in her home, rather, religion just wasn’t a part of her young life. She said:
Having grown up an atheist I had almost no experience of church and had never read the Bible…
In 1991, Fonda married her third husband, media mogul Ted Turner, who is an outspoken atheist and particularly critical of Christianity. According to Fonda, he told her that Christianity is a “religion for losers.”
It was during the later years of this marriage that Fonda found Christianity–in force. Through friends in her home state of Georgia, Fonda was introduced to Evangelicalism and grabbed hold quite fiercely. She said:
I felt the presence of the Almighty very much in my body-and I wasn’t having a nervous breakdown and I wasn’t spacing out, or anything like that. It was very heavy and-you know, it’s hard to get the words out these days because it’s so loaded politically, and it scares me to say it-but I was saved.
The conversion, according to Fonda, was the reason her marriage to Turner ended. She says he was jealous of another man in the relationship–Jesus Christ.
But Christianity isn’t the only religion Fonda is interested in. She is a regular practitioner of Zen meditation and finds various faiths interesting, though not necessarily attractive:
I wasn’t attracted to Buddhism although I really respect it. I wasn’t attracted to Islam although I really respect it. Or Judaism. I’m attracted to Jesus.
Fonda is, and always has been, extremely politically active. Let’s see if we can cover as much as possible here.
If there is any theme to Fonda’s political activism, it is a strict anti-war policy, a drive for social equality, and advocacy for the sovereignty of native peoples.
She began as an anti-Vietnam activist in the 60s and 70s. Fonda and a few others made a documentary film called F.T.A. in which she traveled around military installments in the U.S. interviewing soldiers–particularly to show their dissatisfaction with being drafted and their negative sentiments on the war itself. She participated in various rallies and marches and even traveled to Hanoi, North Vietnam during the war and made several radio broadcasts denouncing the U.S. as a nation of war criminals. These actions earned her the infamous nickname of Hanoi Jane by those who saw her as a traitor.
Over 30 years later, in 2005, Fonda went on a bus tour to speak out against the U.S. war in Iraq.
During the 60s, between Vietnam War protests, Fonda found time to join the Civil Rights movement for black equality, even siding with more militant groups like the Black Panthers. She said about them:
Revolution is an act of love. We are the children of revolution, born to be rebels. It runs in our blood… [The Panthers are] our revolutionary vanguard, we must support them with love, money, propaganda and risk.
Fonda has a list as long as her arm in support of feminism and feminist causes. She founded a teenage reproductive health center, produced the first ever all-transgender version of The Vagina Monologues, and traveled to Sweden to support their fledgling feminist party.
Can we just call her a liberal now? All of her political financial donations have gone to either Democrats (including Obama and Hillary Clinton) and special interest groups like the far-left, George Soros-funded moveon.org. And she’s a heavy-hitter, having given over $200,000 to political causes since 1980.
I don’t think anyone could ever accuse her of having no passion. This lady has literally dedicated her life to changing society.