Excerpted from Catholidoxy
Since we’ve brought up Humanae Vitae, note that Pelosi implies there was all this grey area in the Christian tradition until “maybe 50 years” ago or so, as if Paul VI pulled Humanae Vitae out of thin air. He was codifying the consensus of centuries of tradition in the face of radical and novel cultural pressures.
(2) She asserts that abortion involves considerations “that a woman has to make with her doctor and her god.” Note how individualistic and thus anti-Catholic this claim is. She does not mention any priest. She seems to think of a woman in isolation considering this option in terms of her conscience understood as what she as an individual feels is right, not a conscience captive to Christ and formed by the teachings of the Church.
(3) She asserts contraception would lead to fewer abortions. Contraception is also a grave evil in Catholic thought, but we shouldn’t be surprised she rejects that. What we should point out is the intuitive but false claim that increased contraception leads to decreased abortion. Since the 1960s, when the Pill was introduced and contraception in general more widely accepted as normative, abortion rates soared even as more and more women used contraception. It’s true that any particular act of intercourse involving contraception has a much lower possibility (“risk”) of pregnancy. But on a broader, cultural level, the mentality that permits contraception permits also abortion as contraception. Contraception divorces sex from babies and thus makes them an often unwanted byproduct of orgasm and thus leads to the phenomenon of abortion in culture.
(4) If we don’t know when life begins, as Pelosi expressly says, shouldn’t we outlaw abortion? For, in our ignorance, we may be killing human persons. Shouldn’t we err on the side of caution?
(5) Given Pelosi’s, assumptions, why should we be concerned to lower the abortion rate? Why should they be rare?
Filed under: Abortion |