Too bad there isn’t a vaccination against heartlessness.
Posted on October 17, 2008 at 10:32 am by Dr. Jim
I just wrote a response to a letter objecting to my comments in an article about the local Catholic School Board’s backtracking on the HPV vaccinations that they had originally accepted. In the article (around Oct. 8), I was quoted as mentioning the typical fear religions have of female sexuality and the empowerment given women by birth control and the challenge this presented to “abstinence only” sex education favoured by many churches.
On the 15, a certain David Cavilla wrote to object, and this morning I just wrote back. Here is what I had to say:
Mr. Cavilla asks for my rationale in claiming that women are empowered by birth control and that abstinence only sex-education is a poor policy. He also considers it “misguided” to protect teenagers from their own lack of self-control by removing consequences from bad decisions.
I would remind him of the stigma and ostracisement born by unwed mothers and “illegitimate” children in past decades, not to mention the biblical story of Mary’s controversial pregnancy. Thankfully things have changed but terrible burdens continue to be born by young mothers in terms of family stability, career prospects and so forth.
Teaching abstinence alone to young people simply does not work as well as proper sex education and access to birth control. The statistics bear this out.
Society typically judges women accused of sexual impropriety far more harshly than men guilty of similar indiscretions. Count all of the profane words we have to name a sexually active woman and compare this list to the number of derogatory terms for men who enjoy frequent amorous adventures.
The Bible itself often personifies religiously apostate societies as promiscuous young women who enjoy many “lovers”. Of course, the cities are condemned to destruction. In Ezekiel 16 and 23 the sexual imagery reaches pornographic proportions. The latter chapter goes further to command that real adulteresses and prostitutes be executed –along with their children!
Parents and governments protect children, teens and adults from the worst consequences of countless rash actions. Many children and teens take silly risks when riding bicycles regardless of how many times they are told to be careful. We do not ban helmets but make them mandatory. Why should a harsher standard apply to teen girls who succumb to natural sexual urges?
I suspect it will get published, but it might take a week or so.
UPDATED TO ADD: The letter got published today (Oct. 22). I expect some “polite” replies.