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  • Friday, April 08, 2005


    Diminishing Options for Birth Control

    I know I'm not the only one muttering nasty remembrances amidst all the praise for Pope JPII. I know that the impulse is to gloss over the bad things during the funeral and speak of all the positive actions JPII took during his reign but I can't help it. He made opprobrious decrees, ensuring that life would be more difficult for all Catholic women as well as influencing decision-makers outside of the Church.

    I said nasty things during the Reagan funeral as well. His presidency was a horror show for those with AIDS, the poor and many others. I trace many deaths directly to him and his actions. Why not speak ill of the dead when they did despicable things while alive? Does death absolve them of their actions? Not in my world. I hold the dead accountable for their deeds, good and ill.

    This brings me to a commentary by Caryl Rivers, Pope's Legacy Must Include War on Birth Control. It's worth reading but I'm going to excerpt a few choice bits here.
    "Rome" was very slow to acknowledge a worldwide scandal of priestly pedophilia. (Hats off to Thomas Cahill for his op-ed piece on this in yesterday's New York Times and to Jason Berry in the Boston Globe on the same subject.) It also disseminated misinformation claiming that condoms could not stop the AIDS virus and condoned the burning of condoms in Catholic churches in AIDS-racked Africa.

    The Vatican is also a key player in a persistent U.S. campaign by Christian conservatives and the Bush administration against birth control.

    Bills in this country have been introduced in a number of states to allow pharmacists to refuse to fill doctors' prescriptions for the emergency-contraception pill.

    More and more states are mandating that only abstinence be taught in public school sex-education classes, even while misinformation about birth control is rife in such courses.

    Information about the effectiveness of condoms has been pulled from government Web sites.

    Legislators in a number of states are trying to define all forms of birth control other than abstinence (including the pill) as abortion.

    (via Alternet)

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