Beginning with a staged attack that kills the President and most of Congress, a radical political group calling itself the "Sons of Jacob" and exploiting religious ideology that closely resemble some traits of Christian fundamentalism (and especially of Christian Reconstructionism) launches a revolution and suspends the United States Constitution under the pretext of restoring order. They quickly abolish women's rights, largely attributed to financial records being stored electronically and labelled by sex. The new regime, the Republic of Gilead, moves quickly to consolidate its power, including overtaking all pre-existing religious groups, including traditional Christian denominations, and reorganize society along a new militarized, hierarchical model of Old Testament-inspired social and religious fanaticism among its newly created social classes. In this society, human rights are severely limited and women's rights are strictly curtailed. For example, women are forbidden to read, and anyone caught in homosexual acts would be hanged for "gender treachery".