Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Failure to Contracept = Liklihood to Abort?

I was listening to Dr. Janet Smith's phenomenal treatise on contraception, "Contraception, Why Not?," during this morning's commute, and couldn't help but marvel over the connections she's made between the contraceptive mentality that is rampant in our society, and the stark increase in abortions over the past 40 years.

Arguably, abortion has increased exponentially with the legality introduced by Roe vs. Wade ... this is to be expected, as women now have freer access.

What is perhaps unexpected, however, is the dramatic increase in unintended pregnancies over the same time period, unprecedented in light of the ready availability of safer and more reliable contraceptive methods.

Why, if we have access to the most technologically-advanced and medically-sound contraception in the history of humanity, are we still seeing more than 1.3 million recorded abortions annually in the U.S.?

It would seem that rather than decreasing the number of unintended pregnancies, (and thereby decreasing the need for abortion) the legalization and ready availability of chemical and surgical abortions in this country has resulted in skyrocketing abortion rates:
In the 1992 case Parenthood v. Casey, the Court said, "In several critical respects, abortion is of the same character as the decision to use contraception. For two decades of economic and social development (i.e., since the 1973 decision to legalize abortion in Roe v. Wade), people have organized intimate relationships and made choices that define themselves and their place in society, in reliance on the availability of abortion in the event that contraception should fail."
Pope John Paul II calls this propensity to rely on abortion for backup the "contraceptive mentality." In his 1995 encyclical "Evangelium Vitae," the "Gospel of Life," the Holy Father explains that:
"despite their differences of nature and moral gravity, contraception and abortion are often closely connected, as fruits of the same tree....the life which could result from a sexual encounter thus becomes an enemy to be avoided at all costs." ("Evangelium Vitae" 13).
The fact is, contraception alters part of the intention of the sexual act, (pro-creation) impoverishing the intrinsic dual meaning (pleasure and pro-creation) to exclude the latter. The result: an "unintended" pregnancy, derivative of "failed" contraceptive sex. Naturally, we're going to want to have a back up plan. Unfortunately for the resultant fetus, (aka tiny person) that backup plan includes - but is not limited to - death by salt poisoning, (saline abortion) dismemberment, (surgical abortion) or uterine implantation rejection (RU-486).

There are those on both sides of the issue who will argue for the morality of contraception, insisting that it's a means of "good stewardship" of a family's resources, that it allows a married couple more freedom and enjoyment within the marital relationship, that it's "better than abortion," refusing to recognize the humanity of abortion's primary victim (the parents being, always, secondary victims).

The refutation is simple: contraception exists, so too must abortion. Get rid of contraception, (the ability to separate the pro-creative from the unitive aspect of sexual union) and abortion decreases. Dramatically.

"But, but...." Some will sputter, "that's not fair! I want to have sex when I want it, with whomever (or whatever) I see fit. Without consequence."

Except there are always consequences. Our society is crumbling from its very foundation: children born out of wedlock to single parents who cannot sufficiently provide for their material or spiritual needs, a divorce rate that won't quit, and a shocking proliferation of physical and sexual violence against women. Because, dammit, she better give me what I want when I want it... or else. If everyone is available for sex (and contraception allows for that assumption) than everyone had better be available. Or else. A cursory examination of the last 40 year's societal trends should be sufficient to quell any lingering disbelief.

As a final disclaimer, let me emphasize - as Ms. Smith does in her talk - the fault lies not with our misguided fore mothers and forefathers 4 decades removed: most of them really did herald the invention of reliable contraception as a miraculous advancement in the human condition. World poverty rates would plummet; unwanted children would be no more; marriages would survive and thrive....unfortunately, the exact opposite has occurred, in each instance.

One man saw (perhaps with some Divinely-cast light) the tangled web we'd begun weaving, though his cries fell on largely deaf ears. Most of us are still learning to hear. Many of us don't want to hear a thing. But for those who are interested...give this a look. A word of caution: it may change your life.

14 comments:

  1. It doesn't make sense though. Say a couple is sterilized on the man's side after having the number of children they think they can afford. They will never have an abortion.
    Now...teenagers using condoms with no attempt to use them carefully, these indeed will have the temptation to abortion.

    But to equate all contraception with the abortion mentality is simply not truthful.

    Read John T. Noonan's "Contraception" Harvard Press. The natural methods were resisted within the Church and still are by schismatic groups and the objectors made the identical claim: that if the then unreliable rythmn methods failed, the couple would be tempted toward abortion...which again is logical if they could not afford another child.

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  2. I think those who are "sterilized" (i.e. tubal ligation or vasectomy) are especially prone to thinking abortion, because they think such surgeries are 100% effective. They are not truly sterilizations. I know people who conceived despite both methods.

    There are (still) small groups within the Church that feel NFP should not be used and may use a similar argument. However, the Church has always taught prudence in family size and has always found a comparably reliable method of planning family size as unethical means.

    That is not to say a couple practicing NFP will cannot have such an attitude (not welcoming a child if so blessed). That would be an equally sinful attitude. However, to practice NFP and be so against a child to resort to abortion is a pretty hard to believe considering the investment involved in discussing the issue almost monthly with their spouse. If one spouse is not receptive to the idea of NFP, then of course that attitude of self-gift is not there and hence the selfish attitude of abortion can used.

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  3. Anonymous
    What has long time lineage in the Church is the prescription against contraception...though some theologians maintain that that "diachronic consensus" broke down in recent times once science explained what was happening within sex.

    What has short lineage however in the Church is acceptance of the natural methods for which the Vatican first gave permission in the 19th century in answer to dubia from parish priests who were not sure people could use the newly discovered (scientifically)natural time periods.
    So the anti contraception prescription is old; the acceptance of the natural methods is recent since the natural methods were folklore and were classical world theories prior to the 19th century. Augustine prior to conversion had a child by using the natural methods to avoid childbirth as a manichaean...since the classical method he used was not accurate. He later wrote against the natural method during his time but a Father's every thought are not binding on the Church.
    When Catholic exaggerate the ineffectiveness of say sterilization of the male (or give no figures of studies), this does not help the Catholic cause because we come across as having our answer and being willing to do or say anything to firm up our answer.
    This kind of talk is done by us also in saying condoms are not effective with HIV when in fact, if they are carefully used they are very effective against HIV. If they are nor carefully used, they are not. But our spokesmen are not careful to draw the distinction.

    This Pope had a Vatican office look into this very area due to HIV in Africa

    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,193040,00.html

    since I suspect he was aware that for awhile Bishops in one part of Africa did an interesting thing: they allowed condoms during the infertile periods denoted by NFP to couples with HIV since then the unitive was not being separated from the procreative. What that office arrived at has not yet reached transparency.

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  4. Bill,

    I appreciate your comments and your carefully researched points, though I'll have to brush up on my Augustinian theology for my own peace of mind.

    To address your first assertion:

    "Say a couple is sterilized on the man's side after having the number of children they think they can afford. They will never have an abortion."

    This attitude breaks down into a contraceptive mentality in two ways. First, the couple, asserting their will over the providence and wisdom of God, took drastic steps to cut Him out of the equation, removing their fertility (and thereby His creative input at each unique moment of ensoulment) from the marital act. Permanently. You can't mutilate your body without serious consequence: ask anyone who's ever been addicted to "cutting" or other forms of self-mutilation.

    Secondly, the couple (or perhaps the husband alone) made the decision to sterilize "after having the number of children they think they can afford." Perhaps it sounds hopelessly provincial to suppose that God has a perfect plan for each of our lives which includes our family size, composition, etc.... but I would argue that we trust Him with seemingly larger matters every day, offering prayers for our health, our marital stability, our livelihoods, and the eternal salvation of our own souls, as well as those with whom we live and work.

    Finally, contraception is the first flowering of the mentality that justifies abortion, once come into full bloom. To be contra (against) ception (the beginning) of life, one must take the radical stance that life is not of ultimate value. If you are willing to prevent it (or in lieu of that, participate in its destruction) at and early stage, the likelihood that you will do so at a later point is high. Perilously so.

    As far as the use of condoms to prevent the spread of HIV, that's a separate - though related - matter. I would point to the abstinence approach undertaken in Uganda, and their stunning rate of success, as evidence that condoms are perhaps not he panacea we wish them to be. A condom used to prevent the spread of HIV is HUGELY different from a condom used to prevent the transmission of sperm to ovum. Fertility is not a disease, contrary to the prevailing belief of our times.

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  5. Jenny,
    The NFP couple, like the sterilized couple, can also legitimately get to the point of feeling that that is all the children they can support (especially now with many people losing their jobs and houses) and from there are in, they...the NFP people.... are allowed to be contra conception. So the NFP couple can be against conception because they have serious (seriti) motives and they are allowed forever to try and avoid that with NFP by the Papal theory in line with their thinking on economics and the future. As NFP gets more precise, it's efficacy will be the same as male sterilization (which in the first half year can have fertility).
    Now as to trusting God, He does not require that trust in Him means surrendering control in certain areas of our lives....that is why we go to doctors when we get ill rather than just ask Him to cure us directly like He did all throughout the gospels.

    Tomas Sanchez, a Catholic theologian during the Baroque period, wrote a book on moral theology and in it he noted that parents could sell one or more of their children into servitude in order to pay for food for the others and this was a book with ecclesiatical approval. Which means that your particular version of reliance on God and its degree is not wrong but it means that within the Church, there are other views that the control you are surrendering and its reasons are not for everyone. Sanchez was saying that the faithful can starve and the Bible indicates something similar when it talks of those who...here I'll give it: Hebrews 11:38
    "37
    They were stoned, sawed in two, put to death at sword's point; they went about in skins of sheep or goats, needy, afflicted, tormented.
    38
    The world was not worthy of them. They wandered about in deserts and on mountains, in caves and in crevices in the earth."


    So a just person can get to the point of living in a crevice of the earth even with God watching over them. If they have children, the crevice had better have bunk beds and medical insurance. The passage is about the very best people in the OT which could happen to laity now who whistle blow on their company, get fired, and get blacklisted from their field by word of mouth.

    Brazil's millions of street children has to do with children leaving too crowded situations at home as women have more and more children in poor areas. I saw it growing up that poor families in our area often had more children than they could afford and some not all of such families were often the trouble makers who would steal from other children. Your basic bully in many towns is precisely from these families.

    On Augustine, be careful with him in general. He not only was not a virgin but he seems to have been oversexed in that when he gave up his first mistress of ten years and his mother Monica found him a woman to marry but who was as yet too young, Augustine states that he could not wait and took another mistress.
    Aquinas wrote later of those who are forgiven by God but in whom God leaves "the remnants of sin"... strong dispositions to the same sin. That would make both Augustine and Jerome susceptible to veering toward the more strict view (just as ex alcholics do) in this area so as to protect themselves from their own latent inclinations and thus we find Jerome calling Seneca..."our Seneca"...who he praises in the area of marriage and yet Seneca was a Stoic who also believed in infanticide which he notes in one of his books. And no one raises a question? The Stoics wanted detachment in general not intimacy. Should Jerome have been so chummy with that group? Jerome and Augustine are two prime leaders in this issue because you yourself cannot name 8 Popes of the 265 who have ever written more than a fragment on this topic.
    Jenny, research when it is in church history that sex is first linked to loving someone and that love as taking place during sex rather than sex as being concupiscence only.


    On Augustine I find the quote here....on the methods:

    “ Didn’t you warn us before to watch as carefully as possible for the time after the monthly period, when a woman can be expected to conceive, and to abstain from intercourse at this time, lest a soul be enclosed in the flesh? It follows from this that,in your opinion, marriage was not intended to beget children but to satisfy desires.”
    St. Augustine…”The Morality of the Manichaeans” 18,65.


    It sounds at first like Augustine is later all in favor of having children. Not really. He and Jerome and Chrysostom saw the end of the world coming and held that many children was not a Christian thing but a Jewish thing and he would rather have you asexual:

    Augustine Of the Good of Marriage

    9.…Whence we gather, that, in the first times of the human race, chiefly for the propagation of the People of God, through whom the Prince and Saviour of all people should both be prophesied of, and be born, it was the duty of the Saints to use this good of marriage, not as to be sought for its own sake, but necessary for the sake of something else: but now, whereas, in order to enter upon holy and pure fellowship, there is on all sides from out all nations an overflowing fullness of spiritual kindred, even they who wish to contract marriage only for the sake of children, are to be admonished, that they use rather the larger good of continence."

    then later in the same book
    19.….Forsooth now no one who is made perfect in piety seeks to have sons, save after a spiritual sense; but then it was the work of piety itself to beget sons even after a carnal sense: in that the begetting of that people was fraught with tidings of things to come, and pertained unto the prophetic dispensation.

    Now you can understand why some great theologians saw problems in this area of life and alleged tradition and dissented and were not punished ever for having done so. The Fr. Corapi's of the Church do not seem to really even know of these problems in the tradition.

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  6. Bill,

    I certainly appreciate your enthusiasm, and I'll be the first to admit that your theological knowledge far outpaces my own. But there are some realities that are discoverable through natural law, and not reliant upon revelation or interpretation. I would nominate the respect and, dare I say, reverence for human fertility as an example of one such reality. You ask:

    "Jenny, research when it is in church history that sex is first linked to loving someone and that love as taking place during sex rather than sex as being concupiscence only."

    I answer, Genesis 1:28. God's first words to humanity as a whole, to man and woman together, bespeak His desire that we "be fruitful and multiply."

    Does this mean we throw all caution (and reason) to the wind and pump out as many children as humanly (or now, scientifically) possible? No. It does, however, point to an intrinsic goodness in the sexual act: God desires that we be fruitful and multiply. God desires that man and wife come together in sexual union to incarnate his creation! What a responsibility; what a privilege; what a differing view from the misconception of more than a few saints (and sinners) in our Christian heritage who seek to relegate the sexual act to the arena of concupiscence.

    Be careful when you compare NFP and contraception as apples and oranges. NFP can certainly be used in a contraceptive manner - but contraception can NEVER be used in a way that is loving or inclusive of the entirety of the human person. A couple practicing NFP to avoid pregnancy can choose not to come together in sexual intercourse during the fertile period, certain that their finances/marital situation/health merit the postponement of an addition to the family. Theirs is an act of submission, an acknowledgment of the reality and goodness of their fertility, and of God's plans for it. This is the polar opposite of the selfishness that imbues so much contraceptive use in marriages. This couple says to one another: I love you. Even now, when I can't have sex with you. You are worth the wait, and I would never ask you to put harmful chemicals or devices into your body, nor do I want any kind of barrier between us. You are bone of my bone and flesh of my flesh: we are one.

    Another couple who, instead of abstaining, uses contraception during the fertile period, so as never to "risK" pregnancy, is no longer operating from a position of selfless surrender, but are selfishly taking matters into their own hands, and in the process, stripping the sexual act of its unitive AND procreative aspects. Contraception is not only the rejection of the potential person whom might come forth at the time of conception, but it is also a rejection of the other, the person with whom you share a life and a marriage bed. It is the refusal and denigration of the human dignity belonging rightfully to each individual.

    The solution to poverty and to deplorable social conditions in our world does not lie in contraception. The human person is NOT the problem; we are not a disease to be contained and controlled. Bl. Teresa of Calcutta was able to teach the poorest of the poor a simplified version of NFP that achieved a near zero pregnancy rate - not because children are an intrinsic burden, but because of the dire poverty in which these couples dwelt - as you mention in your response. So yes, NFP can be used to avoid pregnancy - but it can be used well. It does not alter the nature or meaning of the sexual act, nor does it reduce the other (particularly the female) to a sexual object to be used and discarded once satisfaction has been achieved.

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  7. Jenny
    So then, you are sure that all people using contraception have an in general selfish lifestyle. And that all catholic males who use NFP also clean behind the refrigerator for their wife....which by the way to me...is really giving your whole self. Show me a man who cleans under the bedroom dresser for his wife and there is the man who is giving his all.

    What if you as you live actually meet some non NFP people who are doing volunteer work etc. Will you still hold to the ideology that tells you that they are selfish. In short, I'm not hearing the empirical method in what you are saying but I am hearing a line of reasoning repeated by some (and not many in the Church) and I'm hearing the ad hominem that, if you look, permeates this topic now but did not do so back in 1965 when the main laity involved with the papal birth control commission and seeking change were people from the family life movement who were fed up with the rythmn method and its inaccuracies. Your NFP generation forgets that even recent history. I'm fascinated by how the Entenauers and Corapi's never go into the real history of this and Humanae Vitae which was introduced twice at its press conference as non infallible. You need not remind me of Lumen Gentium 25; I'm an expert on it and a. Paul VI Jan. 1966 noted the whole Vatican II (including LG25) was not infallible itself and b. post LG25 moral theology tomes even Grisez's
    noted that one can dissent from the non infallible with study, prayer, counsel etc. (VOL I of Grisez's tome p854)....this because others had protested that LG 25 was simplistic (Rahner).
    In any event, what I am not seeing on the net is any prolonged research into what in fact was the tradition and why did it involve so few Popes. Pope Gregory I for example is one who did comment but Popes never bring him up in the 20th century because he wanted couples to expiate the pleasure they had in intercourse. Pope Sixtus V was another and his strictures were so severe on birth control that his immediate successor repealed them as soon as he got into office. I believe he wanted excommunication for birth control but he was a man who otherwise executed what seems to be thousands of robbers within Rome at the time....so he and John Paul II would not have been on agreement on that area of life...or death as the case may be.

    Jenny, stick to your guns but watch Dawn Eden. So far at least she seems to be able to do this topic without ad homineming the other side as selfish. The priests involved in this issue could learn from her.
    What we need to see is such priests going to the Ivy League and debating this issue there at Harvard and broadcast on TV. I don't think they will because I don't think they are truly prepared.

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  8. Bill, you seem to miss the point about the "abortive mentality," which is the same as the contraceptive mentality.
    The contraceptive mentality reduces children's value merely to the pleasure that they provide to parents.

    'We will have a child when we want to or when it pleases us, which is also correlated to affordibility.'

    'A child is good, but only if it is convenient, only if it conforms to our timing,' says the contraceptive mentality. God, the creator of these children's souls, is not made a part of the decision. The responsibility of bringing a child into the world is directly linked to sex, but the contraceptive mentality seeks to sever this connection.

    Engaging in sex inherently entails taking on a responsibility. A responsibility that sterilization, using a condom or aborting all attempt to avoid taking on.
    --Dave, Denver, CO.

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  9. Dave
    You seem to miss the point that accurate NFP (which by the way was not known to Catholics til the last 30 years)... seeks, after having as many children as one can support,... seeks like other methods to avoid any more children and simply leaves a window open (unlike allegedly the other methods) to unusual results tha might bring conception despite a very accurate method.... but the NFP person who cannot pay for college for the children he has.... is hoping that the window does not allow that unusual result anymore.
    The NFP person therefore is leaving open a possibility that may cost him even more of his life's savings that otherwise would have gone to old age...unless he doesn't pay for college anyway.
    But I thought that the other methods were not 100% effective anyway which would mean that those other people are also open to an unusual event of a new life.

    The connection being made that the one group is abortive and the NFP group is not abortive while both are leaving a window open... is an assertion based on pride and not on anything in the nature of the processes described.

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  10. Jenny,
    Be aware of this link on the Uganda situation. Unlike others that are anti abstinence, this link favors all methods and is not histrionic about attacking either.

    http://www.avert.org/aidsuganda.htm

    Ii maintains that abstinence and condoms were both promoted there during the 1990's when the rate of HIV infected dropped from 15 to 6 percent. "Abstinence only" came later and another factor in Uganda's case was the distortive effect of the vast numbers who died in the 1990's which by definition reduced the rate of those living with HIV. So death itself was one reason Uganda's figures for those living with HIV dropped.

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  11. Jenny, Contraception Why Not is so awesome. I'm glad you are able to appreciate Dr. Smith's brilliance!

    This is something that is hard to explain to people: that the contraceptive mentality leads to an abortive mentality.

    Congrats on articulating it so well.

    Kimberly Hahn (what a rockstar) also does a great job with this topic in her book Life-Giving Love. Check it out!

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  12. Let's try to keep the comments a little less personal, shall we folks?

    Thanks.

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  13. Bill, Your morality is skewed because your eccleisology is skewed. First I will address your misguided morality because that is the main concern of this article
    and this blog in general. Then I will address your view of the Magisterium, which in your case, is the real problem that allows you to hold your non-Catholic view
    while claiming it to be a valid Catholic perspective. Your broken ecclesiology is the foundation of your upside-down moral compass. 7 points:

    1) Vasectomy? Your idea stems from separating procreation from sex. ANY sort of contraception will lead to more rape, all sorts of abuse of women, divorce, pornography for younger and younger children, and a host of other problems. Sex that becomes purely about pleasure will necessarily increase these
    (even if "pleasure-only" is not the motivation for a particular couple). Contraception automatically and necessarily reduces the full and true meaning of sex. Contraception has this effect on society because the family is the basic cell of society and to to wedge evil between the most intimate thing
    a husband and wife can possible do (sex), is to place a moral bomb in their house that will explode into society.
    It is simply delusional to think that a vasectomy "fixes the problem" between contraception and abortion. Instead, it can only create problems.

    2) Bill, you equate the rhythym method with "Catholic Contraception." This is a misunderstanding of the Catholic concept of sex and babies.
    Babies are always seen as a gift from God. If a couple decides to not have children by abstaining for a time, they never close the door to procreation WITHIN the marital act itself. The Catholic approach is to always be open to life, even if they are not "trying." (this doesn't mean that they cannot possibly abuse NFP; all good things can be abused. Rather it means if they are using NFP in the way the Church supports (morally correct), they will use the correct external actions driven by the correct internal motivations.
    You do not understand NFP because you do not realize that every moral action includes 1) the action itself and 2) the intention.
    Giving money to poor is good, but the goodness is thwarted if it is done to be seen. NFP is good, but thwarted if the couple is not open to life (ie "we just don't want kids"). NFP can be abused like giving money to the poor can be abused (my evil internal motivation). But contraception can never be good like rape can never be good (good ends cannot justify evil means).
    The intrinsic nature of the action of sex is for 2 things: babies and bonding. Contraception is intrinsically evil because it makes BOTH of these impossible. How can one have intimacy in sex while put a physical barrier between the most intimate part of it? A condom automatically damages the unitive aspect. A condom divides the unity, it destroys the beauty.

    3) Defectiveness isn't really the issue (though NFP is effective). It's more important to be open to life than to have an "effective" method of preventing pregnancy.
    It does not matter whether Condoms are 100% effective or 5% (though the fact that the pregnancy rate and abortion rate continue to grow since the 1970s shows that contraception has clearly not provided the solution promised by its promoters: to decrease abortion. More "sex education" about using condoms "correctly" will always equal more abortions. Any sort of condom usage (no matter how "correct," will only damage society.

    4) Contraception is evil. Abortion is evil. It doesn't follow that a couple seeking to live morally would avoid one moral evil only to commit another (that
    is, as you mentioned, a couple practicing NFP tries to avoid pregnancy is more likely to have an abortion if they get pregnant. If they were practicing NFP
    because they understood contraception to be evil, it doesn't make sense that they would not have a moral problem with abortion. Who thinks contraception is evil, but abortion is okay? No one. On the other hand, a couple who practices the evil of contraception (to avoid having children) has a much easier time with the next moral evil, abortion (because it too allows them to avoid raising children).

    5) Fox News is not a reliable source for Church teaching. You can always find some WITHIN the Church that espouse an erroneous view, which is what that article
    is doing.

    6) No one has ever starved from having too many children. It used to be pretty standard for very poor families to have 10 kids. More hands to help bring
    in money. More love. More joy. It says a lot that you compare children to money. What is more important, being wealthy or committing evil? I recommend reading the Gospels a bit closer.
    Bill, you see humans as a problem.
    Having more and more children is a good thing. Human life is beautiful. The BREAKDOWN of the family is the problem (not the family itself). Divorce and bad parenting (of which are often caused by contraception) are the cause behind hungry children running in the streets (the child's stomach and mouth are not the problem; the father's lack of commitment to the mother is the problem). The existence of the hungry mouths is not the problem.
    Those children are hungry because governments continue to force contraception as the answer ("My son is hungry." Response, "Here's a condom"). This only leads to a lowering of morality: women become sex objects, children become a "whoops" instead of a "yay!"
    Pregnancy viewed as a problem will only continue to degenerate society. Pregnancy is always beautiful. Any view that rejects this will only be a disservice
    to women, children, the family, and society.
    Bullies come from bad parenting, not "over-crowded" families. That is one of the most absurd things I have ever heard.
    Fertility is the greatest of gifts of healthiness. It should be treated carefully and respectfully. It is in pro-creation that we image God most! We get to co-create with Him! We get to make new humans! To flatly reject this is a great sin, period.

    7) I will address your understanding of Tradition in the next segment, but let me make one point here about the Church Father's teachings.
    If you are going to bring St. Augustine into this, why not point out where he says, "Intercourse with even a lawful spouse is unlawful and wicked if
    conception is prevented." Or Tertullian who said, "Birth control is premature murder. It makes no difference whether it is a life already born that one
    snatches away or a life that is coming to birth." Or St. Clement of Alexandria who said, "He who seeks only sexual pleasure turns his marriage into
    fornication." (That posses a problem with you visectimie-is-morally-permissable theory).

    The Church Fathers recognized that there is a seamless garment of evil, perversion, and death with contraception-abortion-infanticide. That is why the 1st Century Didache, in the same sentence, says, "...you shall not murder a child by abortion nor kill that which is born." Infanticide follows abortion which follows contraception. All 3 are fruits of the same logic.

    The Church has recognized this for 2,000 years and so have Jews for 2,000 years before that. That's why the whole, "when does life begin?" question is absurd because the Church rejects contraception.
    If contraception is evil, how much more evil is abortion, at any point? If it is wrong to PREVENT conception, how much more evil is killing the product of conception (a new human, body and soul), be it 5 days, weeks, or months after conception?

    To reject the Church's authoritative teaching on contraception is to reject the whole of Catholicism. To be Catholic is to accept the Church's authority.
    To protest against the faith and continue to claim your protesting view is a valid Catholic faith, is heretical.

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  14. Just now seeing this. Excellent post, as always.

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