Saturday, January 25, 2014


Every time I see a headline like this, I seethe. Just possibly, what sets me off is not what you might think.

The ongoing court challenges to Obamacare's treatment of contraception as unexceptional preventive medicine are just everyday patriarchal obstructionism. Anyone who doesn't want to practice birth control, who has a religious objection to birth control, is perfectly free not to practice it. If your faith says only having the children you want is evil, convince others of your stance. Don't try to prevent poor women from being able to follow their consciences.

But making an order of nuns the face of the challenge is additional offense. Old men who hunger to control women's bodies are hiding behind the good will and good deeds of the sisters. I've known lots of Catholic nuns. Most of these nuns would probably loyally sign on with their particular sect's opposition to birth control -- but mostly they live in the real world of human struggles and moral ambiguity in which we all do the best we can. Nuns aren't the force behind spurious legal abstractions about religious freedom; they deal in the messy realities of life in the world. They are much more likely to be feeding the hungry and clothing the naked than to be peeking censoriously into people's bedrooms.

Nuns should not be drafted into some clerical princes' battle against Obama and the modern world. Now there is an evil.

1 comment:

Rain Trueax said...

Besides this, the sad part with the nuns is how they give their lives to serve Jesus and they are shafted by the church to not give them a decent retirement or at least it how it used to be. They weren't paid a good salary for the important work they often are doing with educating our young-- and then retire into poverty. I was Catholic, still miss some of the beautiful aspects of the church, but its treatment of the poor, the children and the nuns would never make me tempted to go back. I don't know if Pope Francis can fix any of this or even if he will want to.

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