[ExI] Medical journal says Pope full of shit

Damien Broderick thespike at satx.rr.com
Fri Mar 27 20:53:26 UTC 2009

At 08:59 PM 3/27/2009 +0100, SJ [but not SJ, S.J.] wrote:

>Now, the question is: would the increased AIDS risks arising from of 
>the number of sexual intercourses that would not take place unless 
>the participants were confident in the their ability to avoid the 
>risk of sexually transmitted diseases (and of unwanted pregnancies, 
>to be fair), such as for instance broken condoms or other forms of 
>exchange of fluids during the intercourse,  exceed the reduction of 
>contagion rate arising from the use of condoms?
>The answer seems obvious

Not unless we know exactly how the question was framed by His Godly 
Majesty. Was only coital sex between married men and women considered 
(since the sin of contraception is surely less heinous than the 
mortal and unnatural sin of sodomy?--but perhaps the Catholic 
anti-condom slogan might be "as heinous as the anus!"). My own 
theological interpretation of the matter has long been that Catholics 
engaged in fatally risky sex that might be mitigated by using condoms 
or seething a kid in its mother's milk  or any other abominable sin 
should be *ordered to wear them*, on pain of further grave sin. (This 
accords with the principle of "double effect.") To my amazement, my 
Thomist-grade view has been repudiated by prelates whose casuistic 
excuse can only be some version of "If we let them do X as the lesser 
of two evils, to forestall the greater, pretty soon they'll get the 
idea that X is positively good or at least neutral, and go hog wild." 
And it's hard to disagree, given the shortcuts used by the human 
brain. Besides, dying of AIDS--while not a divine *punishment* (this 
has been ruled a false opinion)--is preferable to suffering eternal 
damnation for using a condom, spilling your seed, or eating meat on 
Friday. (Yes, I know the latter wicked, wicked sin is now usually 
regarded as off the books, but it was once the terror of every 
Catholic child.) (You have to wonder about these people, you really do.)

Damien Broderick

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