Wednesday, May 16, 2007

MEA CULPA, MY BAD

This post is in reference to Monday’s post, “Will the Pope’s Pen Be Mightier than the Bullet?”

To begin, let me say that I am sorry about Monday’s blog. Perhaps that was a little irresponsible. To be honest I did not think anyone would buy the “Amour of Love Campaign” or the designer bulletproof vests with fashion accessories. I should have stuck with the initial urge to also include compassionate bullets. They are sanitary and would help cut down on infections from gun shot wounds. That, perhaps, would have done it. So, sorry and I have already gone to confession per Habemus Papem’s urging.

This false report was loosely based on an NPR segment about the Pope’s visit in Brazil. The news coverage was both skewed and consistent with most of the coverage that they Church in general receives. Be clear; I am not complaining about someone not agreeing with the Church but that there is no fair and impartial coverage of the real issues.

Take for example the issue of the free distribution of condoms. The only part of the Church’s message that got through (or ever gets through) is, “DON’T” while proponents receive sound bites and explanations of their positions. And, of course, the pro-condom group is made up of some really good people who see the problem of sexuality abused and how condoms can solve many of the symptoms of the abuse. They want to prevent pregnancy and illness. This can be difficult for Catholics to stand in opposition to. Who wants to be pro-death and pro-unwanted pregnancies? We can sound pretty stupid.

This was part of the frustration that spawned Monday’s article which had much the same effect. Notice that the fake article took gun fighting for granted. So the obvious solution was to give students bulletproof vests to keep them safe. Carol was the first to point out that it seemed ludicrous that parents were sending their kids to school in which they would regularly participate in gunfights! Wouldn’t you want the government (or concerned parents) to bring gun fighting to an end in the schools? Would not supplying more equipment for gun fighting not only give tacit approval of the fights but also encourage even more of them?

Adoro is the one who made the connection to sex. The Brazilian government is providing free condoms. Let us be very clear, condoms are not fail-safe guards against pregnancy or sexually transmitted diseases. In fact, between improper use and product malfunction their success rate can be alarmingly low (considering that in order to have so called safe sex you would want them to be 100% effective.)

So then the government provides free condoms because, as you know “they are going to ‘do it’ anyway.” But with that condom there is the message that sex is expected and tacitly approved. With that comes a higher sexual activity rate and more and more people playing Sexual Russian Roulette and possibly having to deal with “unwanted children,” or aborting, or adopting out, or perhaps dealing with a debilitating or even deadly disease all under the banner of so called “Safe Sex.” (Some make the case that at least it is safer sex. I find this as absurd as handing out those bulletproof jackets.)

In both articles there are certain assumptions that are understood to be true. There are gunfights. People die in gunfights. Bulletproof vests save lives. If you are against bulletproof vests you are responsible for more people dying. That all seems perfectly logical.

Kids will have sex. Having sex leads to unwanted pregnancies and diseases. Condoms prevent this. If you are against condoms you are only going to create more unwanted children and spread AIDS. That, too, seems logical.

But notice that popular media are always silent when it comes to the Church’s WHY to its teaching. Why is “the Pope” against condoms? Are they evil? No. Not in and of themselves. Perhaps the reason is that condoms give a false sense of “safety” and therefore encourage risky behavior that only adds to the growing population of “unwanted children”; that creates a larger pool of “children raising children” (or grandparents raising children – or worse yet, abortion of children) or that it leads to more sexually transmitted diseases including AIDS.

Perhaps it has to do with trying to get a society to value the human person as a being deserving of dignity and love rather than an object to fulfill personal desires. Wow, with a society that uses each other thusly you might expect to see the divorce rate rise. Imagine that.

Perhaps it has to do with the fact that when people feel that they can have sex and not have to deal with any of the consequences of the act that they might be more inclined to cheat on their spouse causing children to grow up in split homes. A situation JPII referred to as being “orphans with living parents.”

Perhaps it has to do with stemming the tide of man turning in on himself and seeing sex as something to get from another. If we can remove all consequences from sex so that it means little more than two people using the other’s body for personal gratification, then that opens the way to redefining all aspects of the makeup of our culture.

Perhaps too it has to do with building up the human person, giving him control over his life and body, pointing him toward something greater, higher, and nobler.

Yes, people will always have illicit sex and people will always shoot each other. But like handing out bulletproof vests to an entire country in order to cut down on shooting deaths is no way to solve that problem, handing out condoms only adds to the problem, it does not solve it.

We’ve got the best message: Sex is so awesome and wonderful and powerful and it deserves your respect. Be safer, be healthier, prevent more unwanted pregnancies, have more true freedom, understand not only your own dignity but that of those around you, have and give more respect, have integrity, be holy, and live up to the consequences of your decisions.

The condom message: You body is a toy. Indulge in it. Have sex, avoid consequences, take the risk, have at least a better chance of avoiding birth, sickness, and possibly death than without it. Get away with one-night stands. Increase your chances of walking away without any undo attachments. Play the field. You can’t help it anyway.

Yet all we get printed is, “DON’T

32 comments:

Anonymous said...

Well, far more mea culpa, MY bad, because I hadn't followed anything of the Brazil visit except to be thrilled with the canonization of Fr. Galvao. Let me be an example to all of how important it is to follow our Church's doings via its main do-er! But I remember the message regarding condoms (and all the other bones of contention) being lost in JP II's pontificate as well, via the very ones who had an obligation to report responsibly, but opted for the skewing and shortchanging of it all for sensationalism's value instead. I've come to equate journalism with a bunch of well-versed 8-year olds; one wonders what assinine commentary might've non-erupted out of media in Golgotha a while back. ("Our correspondent said there was a strange hush after the challenge for Him to come down from the cross, but..") This is one more reason why Peter's act of requesting his own crucifixion be upside-down is important. It was a sign of his incredible humility in the face of his martyrdom, yes, but the media -- some of whom were actually thinking scribes -- would've wondered aloud at its significance, tho' likely most dismissed him as a fanatic, hopelessly out of touch with the real world.

My new bumper sticker:
QUESTION MEDIA

Thank you for fighting for Love's greater clarity.

Carol

Winnipeg Catholic said...

Hi Fr. V,

I respectfully disagree with this. A condom is not like a bullet proof vest, it is like a first aid kit. Telling a kid to carry a slimy latex bag around in case they fail, is akin to telling them to carry a first aid kit around in case they get shot. And that is the difference betweem the pro-condom and anti-condom camp. The first aid kit is a far cry from an endorsement to go out and shoot one another. And the first aid kit, which is present in every workplace, is an acknowledgement of the reality of the human condition even whilst we try to eradicate workplace accidents.

Furthermore lets just say 0.0001 percent of abortions are conservative christians who do not protect themselves due to our message and then fail, and then fall into the sin of abortion. Well brother, that is just 0.0001 percent too many abortions for my conscience and I know of one of those personally (and painfully). Andrew Sullivan just had an article relating to the statistics of abortion protestors that end up having abortions. Propaganda? Almost undoubtedly. Does it happen? Almost undoubtedly.

So you know what? I think singles should say "Hey, I know that to use this would be wrong, but I know I am human, so if I fail I am going to protect the unborn and my partner from my folly with this slimy lates bag."

For heaven's sake, the anti-condom crowd make condoms sound like they are cocain, or porno, or something remotely attractive or fun. They are a slimy latex bag that is generally an unpleasant reminder of an action that is not sacred ... like it could be in marriage.

A first aid kit, not a 'bullet-proof' vest.

All the Best, -B

sattvicwarrior said...

very well said winni!!!!!!!!a lot more logical than i would have said it and much more to the point. good post on your part.. .

Anonymous said...

Fr. John Hardon had something to say about artificial contraception and how it would, in its inherent disrepsect for the dignity of man and woman per God, lead to cheating, divorce, abortion and more -- that is its trajectory.

As a woman once married mostly for her body, I asked my "husband" one eve as if musing, "Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be a woman and to have someone make love to you?" He said, "Hmm.. yes." I replied, "Hmm.. me, too." We both laughed, but it wasn't really funny. I was blessed to be granted a yes in the dispensation for annulment of that farce, and eventually found out what it is to be loved as a woman. It has little to do with mammalian organs of any kind. That's just the icing on the cake, for both.

Real love is open to the Creator of love. When one puts up a barrier, one puts it up against God. But above all, the discussion shouldn't even arise unless and until a man and woman are committed to each other for life publicly before the whole community and God. If God's not in it, then another is, and then we're talking of what cows and cats do. The Lord Christ did not die for cows and cats.

Carol

Adoro te Devote said...

From Humanae Vitae:

"17. Responsible men can become more deeply convinced of the truth of the doctrine laid down by the Church on this issue if they reflect on the consequences of methods and plans for artificial birth control. Let them first consider how easily this course of action could open wide the way for marital infidelity and a general lowering of moral standards. Not much experience is needed to be fully aware of human weakness and to understand that human beings—and especially the young, who are so exposed to temptation—need incentives to keep the moral law, and it is an evil thing to make it easy for them to break that law. Another effect that gives cause for alarm is that a man who grows accustomed to the use of contraceptive methods may forget the reverence due to a woman, and, disregarding her physical and emotional equilibrium, reduce her to being a mere instrument for the satisfaction of his own desires, no longer considering her as his partner whom he should surround with care and affection. "

Anonymous said...

Amen, Adoro (and JP II), "cause for alarm" indeed.

By the way, I know many girls who .. 10 to 50 guys into condom use.. were still thinking each time, "But maybe this is Mr. Right." I know SO many now, and so many guys who also think connubial rights are synonymous with dating (and/or even expected!), when once it was looked upon as a sin outside of marriage (guess what--it still IS), my messages to my own kids are met with a raised eyebrow. Hello, it's more than being old-fashioned!

One of the most depressing sights in all the world -- no, really, there could be nothing more depressing than finding this in a formerly holy Catholic country -- was a condom dispenser in the ladies' room of a hotel in Ireland that rested Michael Collins' own bones. I taped a hastily written note on that machine for all my beloved fellow Irishwomen especially. Really, if someone were to install a holy card dispenser with a prayer to one's angel, "O guard me from my and others' libido," then I'd be all behind that.

Fr. V. has hit the inanity of handing out condoms right on the head. One truly isn't physically protected from disease or unwanted conception by condoms. And their use fuels and perpetuates the using/abusing of two bodies, but far far worse, in illicit sex (sorry, I can't bless it no matter how sweet), one drags an Indwelling God into the back seat or back to the apartment with them.. something they would not do, would never do, if they were thinking with the proper organ.

Again, I hold media greatly responsible for their irresponsibility. I can't tell you how many ads I've heard on radio regarding women's sexual health, i.e., "Come to our dynamic place of business for your promiscuity needs (and if you get pregnant.. we 'handle' that, too)." Age is a matter of no ask, no tell, apparently, because teens speak the dialog. Crafty, satan.

There is always a red flag that goes up when we're about to do something that belittles us, another, or God. Pay attention to it. One can always at least say, "Not right now," then think more calmly on it. That is always an option. Fate is often far less kind than forethought.

And one CAN stop (sexual experience) once one has begun it. If virginity is sadly gone, chastity need not be. It's doable.

Love,
Mom

Fr. V said...

Condoms are not first aid kits and sex is not a wound. Using that analogy is like saying one should put a bandage on a wound before one is wounded.

And if someone told me that this method was effective, I might be less inclined to saftey. After all, I've already got a bandage on.

Rather than a type of "Get out of jail free" card, a condom is an, "Avoid going to jail at all" card. How is that going to inspire less crime?

Once again the message is CONDOMS DO NOT PREVENT PREGNACY NOR THE TRANSMISSION OF SEVERE AND EVEN DEADLY DISEASES. STOP GIVING THAT MESSAGE OUT. TO DO SO IS TO ADD TO THE RACE OF SO CALLED UNWANTED PEOPLE AND SPREAD DISEASE AND DEATH, A FALSE ACCUSATION OFTEN MADE AGAINST THE CHURCH. Yes, I'm yelling.

I want the same thing as the pro-condom group - less death, less sickness, less poverty, less unwantned pregnacies - and I am saying that this method while it seems logical is exaserbating the problem and its proponants refuse to even engage in the conversation. WHY?

Otherwise good Christians, even anti-abortion Christians have abortions. What in God's names does that have to do with the cost of tomatoes?

And I believe I said quite clearly that condoms are not in and of themselves evil. As a matter of fact, they are quite useful to military personell serving in desert regions for keeping sand out of their guns.

Please think. Don't just buy the propaganda.

Winnipeg Catholic said...

Who said anything about contraception in marriage? I'm talking about young single people. I thought that is what the article was about?

SO... you think God wants greater consequences, eh?

By your rational let's just engineer a more potent AIDS virus so heterosexual sinners will get AIDS more frequently. That'll scare them into not sinning!

Sorry. I see the light of truth behind Humanae Vitae, but it flawed on the surface. God loves us. God does not want to increase the suffering and consequences of sin, and anyone who thinks God's love for us expresses itself in suffering is worshipping a false idol.

This tendency to want to increase consequences of sin is evil. Some are using it to justify avoidance of the cervical cancer vaccine! Foolish by the definition of Sirach!

If you think God *wants* teen pregnancy and *wants* STDs & cervical cancer to happen due to fornication, if you think he imparted the spirit of Wisdom and knowledge to us only to encourage more sinning then I strongly disagree.

God is Love.

Sex is not a wound. Fornication, promiscuity, and sex outside of monogamous marraige causes wounds.

And condoms are a first aid kit that keeps the wound from getting infected.

That doesn't mean I agree with a contraceptive mentality, or contraception in marriage. Married people are callde to express sacred sexuality. Single people are called to chastity. But since almost no one achieves perfect chastity, it is ridiculous to put the unborn in the crossfire of flawed human singles.

Fr. V said...

You made my argument for me. How can you miss in all of my verbose verbage that yes, we want LESS suffering, LESS disease and illness, LESS unwanted babies but the condom promise (a false one) and lifestyle produce more of it unwittingly.

What does artificially making worse consequences for evil have to do with this argument? That is a red harring. Nobody suggested that. But in fact, I would argue that it is the condom mentality that does that deed far better anyway.

Winnipeg Catholic said...

Hi Fr V.,

I was responding in part to Adoro's HV quote:

"Not much experience is needed to be fully aware of human weakness and to understand that human beings—and especially the young, who are so exposed to temptation—need incentives to keep the moral law, and it is an evil thing to make it easy for them to break that law."

This makes me upset. The idea that protecting the unborn from entering the crossfire, or protecting the young from STD's or cervical cancer "makes it easy for them to break the law." That just makes me furious that satan got such a statement into the mouth of the vicar of Christ and a committee of cardinals. God does not create suffering and STDs as an INCENTIVE to do good! That statement is not infallible, it is fallible, and it is just plain wrong. My god does not give people AIDS, cancer, warts, and herpes as an incentive to do good. If your god does that, well, we've got different gods. God loves you and wants you to enter into marriage as the fullest expression of love for another person. God is not threatening you with STDs, cancer, and AIDS. Ack. The thought of it is disgusting.

Yes I agree with you that the mentality of putting oneself in the path of a hurricane because one has a raincoat is foolish. Sure, I can get behind that.

But if humans had a massive biological imperative to go hang out in hurricains (which they don't) then I would tell foolish young people, "don't hang out in hurricains, but if you fail to stay away from them, bring a raincoat, bottles of water, stay in a basement."

Again, I don't understand why you equate condoms with a mistaken mentality regarding their use, or a mistaken understanding of their efficacy. Nor do I understand why you think a condom couldn't be dispensed with an admonishment not to use it and so forth.

It's not like giving a kid a bag of cocaine and telling them not to use it. They already have the bag of cocaine between their ears, it's called a brain. It's like giving them an adrenaline shot and warning them that the shot has an 85% chance of restarting their heart if they use cocaine.

The medical device (Condom) is not connected to the mentality you are concerned about promiscuity. The magisterium's propensity for projecting promiscuity onto a latex bag is illogical and effort ill spent.

Anonymous said...

WC ~

Where did you get THAT!?

No, God does not inflict suffering...we do that all on our own through rejection of Him. Suffering is the consequence of sin, and when we do things like have sex using condoms that break, and do this with perhaps more than one person, it is a rejection of God's love. The behavior causes consequences such as HPV (which is extremely widespread), HIV, and other STD's, as well as unplanned children.

No, God doesn't create suffering, but he sure does allow us to wallow in it and he brings great things out of suffering if we offer it to him.

The reality is that this over-sexed condom-obsessed culture we live in DOES make it very easy to act in ways contrary to objective morality. We have teh dignity as human beings to TRANSCEND our lusts, but it's a heck of a lot harder to transcend our own will when we're constantly faced with impurity and then someone sticks a contraceptive in our hands with the admonition "don't get killed".

Speaking as a woman, every time I said NO to a guy, the first question or statement had to do with "protection", not the fact that I didn't see sex as being a recreational activity or my existance to be for the purpose of his personal pleasure.

Were it not for the propagation of condoms, people would be far more valued in our society and we'd wouldn't be witness to so many throw-away lives.

~ Adoro

sparky said...

Science proves the Church right as usual.

In countries where condoms are promoted, AIDS cases rise (most of Africa). In countries where abstinence and faithfulness are promoted, AIDS cases decrease (Uganda for example). The failure of condoms to prevent unwanted pregnancies in the US (for people who ALWAYS use condoms)is also abysmal. Opinions don't alter facts.

The link below will show you the statistics.

http://www.hli.org/condom_expose_complete.html

Anonymous said...

Abstanace works when ever it is practiced. We are not a bunch of animals that cannot control ourselves! God did not say life is easy or that we are to be happy at all times in this life.... life is a sacrifice, any time we can offer up our sufferings to be along side our Lord, Jesus. God knows what is best for us sometimes we think we know better than him!
Robin

Winnipeg Catholic said...

OK, apologies if my reaction was a bit strong...

But I still cannot see a medical device as a mentality.

Take nails for example. Nails were used to crucify Jesus, but they are not evil. Nails are not a crucifiction mentality. They are a small metalic spike used to affix things to one another.

I would say that if Uganda has a sucessful abstinence program it is because they are strongly advocating a healthy mentality. It has noting to do with slimy latex bags, or the lack thereof. The last time I checked, condoms are legal in Uganda.

Personally, I know plenty of people who failed to maintain virginity whilst single, but did not procreate or spread disease thanks to that second line of defense to our fallen nature, the humble latex bag. Now, do you wish STD's upon the fallen? Pregnancies? No, and I don't know any of recovered fornicators that advocate promiscuity or are proud that they failed to wait until marriage.

So you really have two choices here:

1-You condemn fornication and all people who fornicate to out-of-wedlock pregnancy and STDs. You believe that condoms would only take away this important consequence of sin.

or

2-You condemn fornication but you would prefer a fornicator not spread disease or cause out of wedlock pregnancy, or be further tempted to abortion. So condoms are OK by double effect.

So I tend to feel that choice number 1 is a bit evil, because that is wishing suffering upon sinners to make them bend to your own understanding of the moral good, which is a form of judgement.

Anonymous said...

WC ~

Your nails analogy was already addressed by Fr. V.

Otherwise, the rest of your comment is bereft of logic.

You're referring to natural consequences of sin as being people who follow the natural law and moral teachings of the Church to be inflicting God's suffering upon people. This is not logical. Go back and read what I wrote. God did not intend sin, we choose it through free will, and through OUR actions, WE SUFFER ALL DUE TO OURSELVES. God does not inflict punishment. We just suffer for our choices.

"1-You condemn fornication and all people who fornicate to out-of-wedlock pregnancy and STDs. You believe that condoms would only take away this important consequence of sin."

This is compltely illogical and displayes your misunderstanding of moral teaching. As far as condemning relations outsideo f marriage? YES! That would be the Commandment against Adultery, for we commit sins under that commandment when we have sexual relations outside of marriage, whether we are single or married to someone else.


Additonally, as has already been addressed, condoms DO NOT STOP STD'S AND PREGNANCY! In fact, even if they are used "correctly" they still don't stop the spread of HPV (Human Papilloma Virus). And funny thing...it's usually men who spread it to women, as most STD's are more readily discharged by men upon women, consistent with how the human body works.

WC said:
"So I tend to feel that choice number 1 is a bit evil, because that is wishing suffering upon sinners to make them bend to your own understanding of the moral good, which is a form of judgement"

None of us wishes suffering upon another...we wish for EVERYONE'S dignity to be upheld and affirmed, and suggesting that rutting like animals with the false idea that "we can't help it...we're horney teens and we have condoms and everyone says we're going to do it anyway..." is false logic. It keeps no one safe. It puts the idea into the heads of people everywhere that the behavior is oK< and since the introduction of contraceptives, morality has gone straight down into the toilet ad we've seen the advent of false "logic" that claims that "If I don't get to do what I want I'll suffer".

Funny...I remember using that kind of an argument when I was 4 or 5 about some kind of game I wanted to play, then I whined that Mom wasn't fair for not giving me my way.

The only way to keep people safe is to uphold chastity which is a reinforcement of true dignity, to continue to teach the truth, even in the face of such illogical arguments as the ones employed by you, which, by the way, are the ones most ofen used by the UN and Planned Parenthood. What company you chooe to keep in your argument.

Sorry, friend, they're wrong on this and so are you. I do believe your heart is in the right place, but it would be good if you really understood God's natural order of where sex belongs and the fact that it is sacred....not a toy to be used for random recreation.

~ Adoro

sparky said...

Probability of Pregnancy Over Time for Women Whose Sexual Partners Always Use Condoms:

1 year = 15% chance of pregnancy
2 years = 28% chance
3 years = 39% chance
4 years = 48% chance
5 years = 56% chance
10 years = 80% chance

I assume the statistics are even worse for disease, since a woman my not be fertile when a condom fails, but every failure transmits body fluids.

Now imagine your partner has AIDS, a disease that is 100% fatal. Russian roulet has better odds.

Fr. V said...

WC -

Just got back from working out and got out of my head for a spell. Spent some time trying to see things in the light you provided.

I guess if I had a magic wand, I would not make all such products dissappear off of the counter just yet. We've got far too much work to do. But I still connot condone going through a school and handing out condoms like suckers. I fail to see how one cannot make a link between that and young persons picking up the idea that it must be Okay.

Anyway - THANK YOU for the challenging thoughts.

Winnipeg Catholic said...

Hi Fr V,

And thank you (and all) for your thoughts and the discussion. It is helpful. Obviously I struggle to reconcile myself with some points of church teaching though I embrace the intent behind it.

All the Best, -B

Winnipeg Catholic said...

A bit of clarification. A properly used condom has a much better chance than 15%, it is more like 1-2% of 100 sexual acts result in pregnancy.

But that is really neither here nor there.

I think what we would all agree on is that the condom industry that wishes to use racy advertising selling the theme of safe sex would be unhealthy.

There again I would say we should focus on the mentality and never allow ourselves to be focused on the latex bag. We look like idiots when we do that. Of course if someone is already in the act of fornicating, we are sad for them, but we hope they are using a condom because they are less likely to spread disease. But we also hope they realize that they are risking the unborn in their uncommitted and irresponsible actions, not to mention their emotional health.

Sound agreeable? See? That's not so bad.

This is bad:

"Not much experience is needed to be fully aware of human weakness and to understand that human beings—and especially the young, who are so exposed to temptation—need incentives to keep the moral law, and it is an evil thing to make it easy for them to break that law."

Bless his heart, I know his intentions were good but that sort of talk makes it sound like we want people to fall into worse suffering than necessary. I prefer to read that statement that it is wrong to exaggerate the lack of consequences as if medical protection was 100% effective. Does that make sense?

MJ said...

Wow! 19 comments this is a hot topic! I teach junior high and high school. Unfortunately most of these kids equate sex with love. Did I say I only teach in Catholic schools. Obviously this is not what we are teaching them. However with mass media this is what they are learning. Many children are going home to raise themselves. Many have a real lack of direction. I don't blame Fr. V for YELLING!!! We all have to get the message out. Especially to the young people because that's where it starts. Many have low self esteem and without encouragement it will not get better!! We need to embrace these children and lead them in the right direction to Jesus!!

Winnipeg Catholic said...

Amen MJ. I just saw all the young seniors hanging out in front of my local catholic high school two days ago while on my way to daily mass. Looked like some sort of seniors event/tailgating tradition..

I have a todler and a baby. I am quite afraid of having a teen and trying to work out my ideology.

For myself: The wisdom of my elders was discounted significantly when I thought it was over blown or exagerated.

So I tend to assume that if I oversell 'Condoms are evil' my kid will discard EVERYTHING I say because latex bags are not evil. That is how I would have reacted. On the other hand, my kid is not me. And when I have been in a position to witness the catholic faith to people around me, all the nuance that I find reassuring, they find troubling.

Anyway, that's the world from my point of view at the moment.

Who said anything about terrible twos?!? I love toddlerness, may it last forever, god save me from the terrible teens!

MJ said...

WC-
Enjoy your young ones. It goes much too fast! I wish mine were 8 & 10 again!
God bless.

sparky said...

WC -

I got my statistics from the FDA, the National Institute of Health, and the warning in the condom box. 1-2% failure rate is not true.

Look at trojancondoms.com and ask yourself if you would want teenagers visiting the virtual "city" there. Very eye opening.

Growing up with the sexual pressure of the 80's was miserable. Adults do send a message of approval when they give condoms. I wish the adults had backed us good kids up because the peer pressure is grueling.

Anonymous said...

I was afraid to look in here this morn. Now I know why. :-)

My daughter went with a friend to a local planned "parenthood" type clinic once, and there on the table under the lamp near the Highlight magazine (and near, mayhaps, Cosmopolitan?) was an enormous bowl of condoms. EW! Btw, my daughter's friend was 14. Her body hadn't even finished forming, yet she was handed a prescription for chemicals that would alter that body in mid-growth! Unfortunately, her mom knew of it, but these condom-adorned clinics are evil in hiding all info about minors from their parents.

Also, a radical group somehow kept to the perimeter of our high school one day decided they'd NOT be shut out, and they went all through town offering kids (yes, kids) flavored condoms. May God help their sorry asses should I ever encounter such a thing.

Condoms just simply aren't positive in any way, unless they protect one's spouse from certain diseases. They are a very negative thing, and they did not emanate from heaven. They are the very antithesis of what emanates from heaven.

(Um, I didn't know about how to keep sand out of desert guns. Interesting. A failure rate there would be ok..)

Carol

Winnipeg Catholic said...

"[Condoms] are the very antithesis of what emanates from heaven.

Carol, If you try to equate a latex bag with evil, you're not going to convince anyone who doesn't already agree with you. The mentality that promiscuity can be consequence free is opposed to moral good, the forces marketing and promoting the idea of consequence free immorality, is what you're really against. When you confuse this with an inanimate object you short circuit your argument.

And since we are occupying Iraq as a police force in an action that the pope never approved of, I'd say the use of condoms there isn't a particularly happy thing either.

Anonymous said...

W.C., are you saying that guns don't kill people?

Maybe you'd better split hairs with the Pope over semantics -- I'm honestly too dumb for that. I keep my eyes on the Prize, follow the examples and counsel He has left to teach us, and I hope to end up on the sheep side of Him one day.

Anonymous said...

PS -- that was of course from (Carol), as is this.

Let's see... the people who want to keep their guns (ammo, too) want to do so because they are inherently not bad.. just things? They've never actually thought of using them.

Those who watch the home shopping channel's monstrous knives and swords sales (and, *gulp.. buy some?) are merely appreciative of the blending of steel and bone? They've never had a thought to use these things?

I'm rather confused.. are we on the same side, W.C.? As for antitheses, you do know that sometimes condoms do prevent conception, right? So, what is it that has happened in that moment when sperm is kept from penetrating an egg? Well, something dies, doesn't it? As will that egg, the moment the uterus realizes there's no budding pregnancy to keep thickening itself for.

It is something the Church Fathers (and others well before them) spoke to: Do not spill your seed on the ground (or WHEREVER). Why? Because potential life dies? Because we want to be God and call all the shots?

Let me clarify: condoms, Orthodeath, sponges, coitus interruptus, mastubration, rape, and having a headache all the time is the antithesis of Heaven. God is ever-creative. To move against potential co-creation is to potentially, yet wilfully, go against God's will.

The elephant in the room is:
Abstinence.

Abstinence works. Let's teach it.
Again.. and again.

Winnipeg Catholic said...

Dear Anonymous,

Eggs & Sperm:
The church does not teach that sperm and egg are life. The church teaches that life begins at conception, because an embryo hs the possibility of becoming life while sperm and egg do not. Do not try to extend life to sperm and eggs as they die continuously and are not life, as the church has stated. The church has never stated when the soul is imparted, though Augustine suggested the quickening.

OK. Now that we're done with sperm and eggs...

Evil Objects:
Yes, I would agree with that old 2nd amendment statement that guns are not inherently evil. The swiss guard, I am told, carries them in their uniforms to protect the vatican. Cops carry them to protect you. They can be employed to shoot paper targets in harmless fun. Indeed, it is foolish to impart evil to scissors, knives, guns, paperclips, electrical cords, ropes, or any object that could be used to do evil.

As Christ says, evil comes from within. We project evil out into the world. We do not receive evil from objects. People use objects to do evil things to one another.

And as Fr. V stated a latex bag can be used to keep guns operational in the desert and for many other uses. I seem to recall that intra-vaginal ultrasound wands are kept sterile for each patient with a condom. Is that evil?

I'm all for teaching abstinence. But if you try to say that a latex bag is the cause of fornication no one will listen to you. People cause fornication to happen. Irresponsible marketing of latex bags as a failsafe protection is also bad.

The real teaching of abstinence can be found in JPII's Theology of the Body. The psychological needs of men and women to not be objectified. To be loved. To find real, deep, and meaningful love. How unrequited love, jealousy, envy, and objectification are harmful in and of themselves. How satisfying married monogamous life, and single celibate life can be deeply satisfying, and why uncommitted sexuality is unfulfilling. Testimonials from people who have lived both ways.

These are the things you should focus on. No one with a brain is going to listen to someone ranting about how an inanimate object is evil. Particularly not a latex bag. At least guns make a loud bang and are inherently scary, and can cause instant death. You at least have a shot at convincing someone that a gun is evil though even I would argue that Mr. Cho, not the gun, was the cause of the evil at VA tech.

Well. Good luck.

BTW - in Theology of the Body did JPII ever say latex bags are evil? I'll be dissapointed if he did. His other arguments are much more convincing to me.

Eric B said...

Winnipeg,
I am not sure if you get the point of the Catholic Church's position - having easy access to condoms only encourages their use - a useful comparison may be having a computer at home with a teenager, if they have their computer in their room, they will be more tempted to go on internet sites that are not appropriate, if the computer is in a more public area, they will be less tempted to do so. Not having condoms around will be a reason to be less tempted to have sex as a single person.
Also, the failure rate of condoms means that with 100 women using condoms, 3 of them will get pregnant per year - do you want a teenaged girl having those kinds of odds? I sure don't. And if they don't get pregnant the first few times of sex, they will be even tempted to have more sex with condoms and knowing teenagers are not the most mature people in the world, their usage of condoms will be less than perfect and then the failure rate goes up to 12%. And where will our teenaged lovers go if they do get pregnant, to the abortionist.

Winnipeg Catholic said...

Hi Eric,

Has the magisterium come out against having condoms 'around' on the grounds that it might be more tempting to sin?

Even if they have, I would strongly disagree. The temptation is in your brain, not in a latex bag. What about the withdrawal method, oral sex, or the like?

TEACH MORALITY WITH THE ACTUAL BENEFITS OF VIRTUE!

trying to enhance the consequence of sin, or imagining the consequential teaching to be abrogated by the paliative use of condoms as a medical device to decrease the consequences totally misses the point of god's love for us and the whole point of the moral teaching of the church as expressed by JPII.

PROMISCUITY IS BAD FOR OUR SPIRIT, HEARTS, and PSYCHIC HEALTH!

If you cannot frame the argument in terms of how a totally 'safe' promiscuous act is bad for someone, without resorting to pregnancy and disease, then you have no business teaching the young about sexual morality.

Anonymous said...

Littering the landscape with ocndoms is saying, "We give up." It's like legalizing abortion. Or like giving dying nations GM foods.

I hope it never happens to any other mother, but after having raised your kids yuor very best, and making sure they receive all the sacraments and go to Mass and develop a sense of love and responsibility and all the other things we try so hard to give our kids, and to protect, there may come a day when you are kicked in the spiritual throat by not only finding out your daughter has been promiscuous, but that the one who deflowered her little teenaged self calls her a whore.. to your face. And then comes the kick to your heart, when you try to wring a "Yes, it was a mistake," from her, only to see her defiantly deny that's the case. Was it a message of some other that overrode that of her parents' and of the Church? Or was it the attitude all around them of others, the "I give up"? This argument isn't about latex bags being evil.. that is not the distinction we're making, I think. The point, rather, is that if a government (or anyone) sighs and says, "Well, they're going to do it anyway; may as well arm(or) them," it sends the wrong message.

We do not give up. Nor does the Church. The schools won't be teaching abstinence, nor even allowing abstinence programs, and Caesar always proves how much he cares.

God doesn't send AIDS anymore than He sends tsunamis. But He does allow our foolishness to make us ill, or to shift tectonic plates, eventually. And He does allow us to be reminded that His way works best.

Carol

Anonymous said...

I cannot remember which Bishop? Cardinal? spoke in favor of condoms a few years ago.. but it should be noted that he was not elected Pope.

Someone mentioned an analogy of fire and/or ocean. Yes, fire can be friend as well as enemy, and the same for the ocean. A condom.. or any other form of sexual protection from untimely pregnancy or STDs can never be friend of the one who is made in the image and likeness of God. It is always enemy. Always dismal. It tells God to take a hike for a few minutes.

Carol (pls pardon typos)