Among the contraceptives that would be banned if Catholic hospitals etc. rebel against the Obama Administration ruling.
It is frankly difficult to conceive that in this day and age, in the second decade of the 21st century, a major world religion is still attempting to foist its archaic sexual-reproductive standards on its minions.....errrr.... members, and even extend that antiquated codswallop to affect non-members lives! But what else can one conclude when one reads bizarre bilge ('Catholics Hit Rule on contraception', WSJ, Jan. 27), such as:
"Catholic leaders lashed out at the Obama administration's decision to require religious employer's health plans to cover contraceptives, accusing the White House of betraying them on the issue.."
The article then elaborates:
"Catholic leaders say they were surprised by new federal rules that require employers to provide all forms of contraception approved by the Food and Drug Administration without co-payments or deductibles for health insurance policy holders. Most employers have to comply with the requirement starting in August..""
Say what? Look, these religious twits knew for over six months this ruling was coming, and they also knew the U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services had already exempted religious organizations that employ and serve people of the same faith, from having to provide contraceptive services for them, for example. This is natural and reasonable, because it is assumed that within that closed enclave of homologous Catholic faith - most or all of the participants would agree to any claimed principles or dogmas.
However, any birdbrain would have to know that dispensation would have to cease when the general public, including many Protestants and even atheists, secularists that attended a Catholic hospital (maybe because it's the only one in their area) might be prevented from getting contraceptive services they needed. After all, since they aren't Catholics they can't be held to the same moral "rules" as Catholics.
But this is what these Catholic whiners are bitching about!They insist that their pet morality on contraceptives be broadened to extend to ALL employees and institutions, even those that employ mostly non-Catholics! This is insane! They even have the nerve to offer up rubbish such as spouted by the Archbishop Timothy Dolan of New York (ibid.), that this rule:
"is a literally unconscionable attack on religious freedom"
In fact, it isn't! Roman Catholics are perfectly entitled to withhold contraceptive services for their own Catholic members, but may not do so for the general public that has no other alternatives or recourse than to go to a Catholic hospital, or work at some other Catholic institution - say like a school. Hence, if I as an atheist am teaching at such a school, I need to be able to secure these contraceptives for my wife if she should need them. To say I can't based on the fact the school is religious, is an infringement of my rights as a citizen. And certainly, if the Catholic Church is to continue to enjoy tax free status as a religion, it needs to keep its nose out of issues that don't concern it, namely those affecting non-Catholic citizens, irrespective of where they work.
Most puzzling is why, if Catholics purport to be against abortion, they'd be against contraception which arguably would cut down on the number of abortions. As one Connecticut lawmaker, Rosa De Lauro (D) observed, the White House actually "handled the decision very well by being open to listening to religious leaders", while adding (ibid.):
"Contraception is about preventing unintended pregnancy"
Exactly, so why on Earth be against something like contraception - in which no lives are taken - that would putatively eliminate the need to take them in the case of abortion? There is no logical reason for this. It's as if Catholics willingly condone the greater evil because they object to a subjectively perceived "lesser evil". That would be like me insisting all vaccinations be banned as "unnatural" based on my wacky religious beliefs of what constitutes the "natural", and demanding it be done for all people who avail themselves of my assistance or hospitals- thereby possibly leading to major pandemics that would engender the much greater REAL evil of death!
What the Church is really hanging onto is an antiquated "natural law" which is absurd on its face. Indeed, Catholic impediments to a sane birth control policy began with the misguided encyclical Humanae Vitae in 1968. The Pope at the time, Paul VI, issued this document in direct opposition to his own specially appointed Papal Commission on the matter. Author David Yallop, in his book In God's Name, 1984, has portrayed Humanae Vitae in stark terms indeed, as well as its paradoxical consequences (p. 58):
"On a disaster scale for the Roman Catholic Church, it measures higher than the treatment of Galileo in the seventeenth century "
The implicit assumption in Humanae Vitae and Pope John Paul II's subsequent encyclical Veritatis Splendor, is that procreation takes precedence over any other function of sexual intercourse. This is observably true in most other animals (with estrus cycles) but it certainly doesn’t apply to humans who exhibit a diverse array of sexual play. To devalue sexplay for its own end, while extolling procreation-based sex as the be-all and end-all, is to rob humans of their uniqueness as sexual primates. Or, to refer to the words of one Catholic biologist, Elizabeth Dougherty (in Contraception and Holiness, The Lessons of Zoology, p. 110):
"Why do we call secondary the ends of the sexual act which have been accorded in fullness to us, and why do we call primary the end that we share with the lower animals?"
It is also to invite ecological catastrophe for this planet. Since 1968, for example, the world population has added another two and a half billion which the Vatican merely welcomes as 'more souls for the Church' - potential or otherwise - while ignoring their collective impact on strained planetary ecosystems. Also, ignoring their individual impact on families which are so stretched economically they can't even care properly for the children they have, far less must add!
Catholic voters need to ask themselves if they are really prepared to get their panties into a snit over this, to the extent of either sitting out this election or worse....voting for someone like Mitt Romney,......a multi-millionaire who already has stated intentions to cut or privatize Medicare and to whittle Medicaid down by using "state block grants". In other words, let the burden of Medicaid fall on already budget-busted states to provide care. Most likely by whittling down the threshold acceptance levels to the bare minimum, say maximum income of $150 per month.
So these high-minded Catholic grasp the suffering this will surely cause? Or maybe their precious, antiquated doctrines are more important to them than the suffering of their fellow citizens.