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April 08, 2005

Squander Answers Polly.

Polly on John Paul and condoms:

With its ban on condoms the church has caused the death of millions of Catholics and others in areas dominated by Catholic missionaries, in Africa and right across the world. In countries where 50% are infected, millions of very young Aids orphans are today's immediate victims of the curia.

He asked how the Pope could be blamed when all the church calls for is sex within marriage and abstinence. But abstinence and celibacy are not the human condition.

Squander Two on this view:

In fact, if everyone in the world had followed the Pope's advice, AIDS would be an unknown disease.
Ah, say the idiots, but you can't really expect people to have enough willpower to stick to that rule, can you? Perhaps not, but if people can break one rule, they can break two. If you don't expect people to follow one of the Pope's instructions, why are you convinced that they have no option but to follow one of his others?

April 8, 2005 | Permalink


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» The Pope and AIDS from Croziervision v3.0
it just won't go away. Laban has the best round-up but also check out Pollard and the Tim Worstall's comments. Seems there just aren't enough Catholics to make much difference [Read More]

Tracked on Apr 9, 2005 3:31:33 AM


It wouldnt be *quite* unknown (let's assume there's no rape) because HIV can spread through drug use, cuts and any other means where blood can be transferred.

Posted by: Monjo | Apr 8, 2005 2:41:00 PM

Nonsensical puffery. Africans _do_ use condoms, Papal bar or not. And just before they use them they cut the ends off lest the complete condom interfere with reproduction. Might give a small modicum of protection to the men, but none to the women. This is a widespread African cultural thing having esentially nothing to do with Catholicism.

Posted by: Tom Kratman | Apr 8, 2005 2:51:26 PM

Like all other left-liberal commentators Polly is not happy unless she can blame someone white and European for the failings of the developing world. Catholicism is a minority religion in all the parts of Africa which are wost hit by the AIDS pandemic. In Zimbabwe, for example, only 7.7% of the population are Catholics yet there's a 33.7% HIV/AIDS prevalence rate. The figures are similar for South Africa (6.4%/21.5%).

Here's a revolutionary thought for Poll and others such as Mary Ann Sieghart: maybe the Africans themselves are responsible for their own HIV/AIDS pandemic through a combination of unsafe sexual practices (not just the non-use of condoms) and government negligence.

Posted by: David H | Apr 8, 2005 3:20:59 PM

Hey DavidH, I'd like to blog that, do you have a site I can trackback-to?

Posted by: -keith in mtn. view | Apr 8, 2005 6:53:10 PM

I don't have a blog, Keith - I'm not sure I could guarantee the sort of commitment that's required (how does Tim do it?). You're welcome to use anything that's useful - the Catholic percentages come from nationmaster.com (http://www.nationmaster.com/country/sf/Religion) and the HIV/AIDS figures from the CIA World Factbook (http://www.cia.gov/cia/publications/factbook/geos/sf.html)

Posted by: David H | Apr 8, 2005 10:02:50 PM

Thanks David! I have blog, it's not much but it gives me a chance to think about things, then sort-of express them aloud - about like talking to myself!

Posted by: -keith in mtn. view | Apr 9, 2005 2:44:48 AM

In the West, AIDS is largely confined to drug abusers and active homosexuals. Heterosexual transmission occurs but not at a level that would sustain the disease. I don't think the Church has much to say about the use of condoms during homo-genital sex acts. After all, the acts themselves are condemned far more harshly than contraception. And condoms are not contraceptive in these situations.

The situation in Africa is far different than in the West. There the operative factors are untreated venereal disease, "unnatural" sexual practices, dislocation of traditional societies and resulting promiscuity. Now insert free, government promoted condoms into this situation and you have a mixed impact. A man responsible enough and caring enough of his partner might be persuaded to limit himself to safe sex practices (with condoms). But if the promotion of condoms undermines what is left of traditional sexual morality, this will exacerbate the AIDS problem and all the other negative effects of the breakdown of traditional values.

I think we should give a lot of weight to the perspective of religious leaders on the spot, both Muslim and Christian.

I would be surprised if African Anglicans - who may allow condoms in marriage for contraception - are all that gung ho about promoting condom use to limit the spread of AIDS.

Posted by: Charles R. Williams | Apr 9, 2005 9:33:09 PM