Sunday, July 27, 2008
More on the 40th Anniversary of the Catholic Church's Contraception Ban
Chicago Tribune: Contraception ban remains bitter pill, by Robert McClory (Northwestern University; former Catholic priest):
Forty years ago last week, Pope Paul VI issued his encyclical Humanae Vitae, condemning the birth control pill and all other forms of artificial contraception.
So, four decades later: Did Paul get it right or wrong?
Right, say the encyclical's throng of proponents (just Google Humanae Vitae and scroll on forever). The pope predicted a lowering of moral standards, a rise in infidelity and promiscuity, a lessening of respect for women and government-enforced limitations on population. All these things have come to pass, and the pope's supporters see contraception at the center of them all.
Wrong, say the numbers who have left the church since 1968 (so that one in every 10 Americans is now a former Catholic, according to a Pew survey this year) and the majority of believers (more than 75 percent, according to the 2005 Catholic Identity Study) who remain in the church yet reject the encyclical. The proclamation was, they insist, a disaster.
NY Times: The Pope vs. the Pill, by John L. Allen, Jr.
BBC News: Catholics 'ignore rules on sex'