After a staged attack that killed the President of the United States and most of Congress, a radical political group called the "Sons of Jacob" used quasi-Christian ideology to launch a revolution. The United States Constitution was suspended, newspapers were censored, and what was formerly the United States of America was changed into a military dictatorship resembling a theonomy, known as the Republic of Gilead. The new regime moved quickly to consolidate its power, overtaking all other religious groups, including traditional Christian denominations. In addition, the regime reorganized society using a peculiar interpretation of some Old Testament ideas, and a new militarized, hierarchical model of social and religious fanaticism among its newly created social classes. Above all, the biggest change is the severe limitation of people's rights, especially those of women who are not allowed to read, write, own property or handle money. Most significantly, women are deprived of control over their own reproductive functions.