Our Culture Sucks

Our sexually-liberated culture is a joke. That is to say, it is “a thing that someone says to cause amusement or laughter, especially a story with a funny punchline” (Merriam-Webster). Yep, there’s a punchline at the end of The Sexual Revolution, if ever a punchline made you sob, throw up, and hate yourself for the rest of the week. It is this: We’re all Puritans! Again!

Not in our actions, mind you, but in our reaction to the fact of the human body. Sure, the Sixties revolted away from sexual repression in a shining, free-loving flash. But a revolution is only the turn of a circle. The Sexual Revolution has come full circle, ending where it began, entrenched in the same Puritanical coil it so urgently sought to shuffle off. Allow me to explain:

Puritanism hates and fears the human body. The world, the flesh, matter — all this is evil, perishable stuff to be ‘gotten over’. The body is an essentially confusing thing, filled with dirty desires, concupiscence, unwieldily passions, bewildering emotions, depressions, rages and all the rest. The body, as ‘confirmed’ by Descartes, is but cage for the soul, an agressor to be staved off, an opponent to be conquered. (Depressed yet?) For some bizarre reason (certain heresies will remain forever inexplicable to the Catholic sensibility) the English Puritans went to it with gusto, repressing like they were being paid for it.

If you'll recall...

This sexual repression — as we swiftly realized — sucked, and terribly so. (Thank God it didn’t last.) I find that the first really inspiring rebellion against Puritanism — though I’m aware it had predecessors — was Walt Whitman. It was a far-swinging pendulum, a wild rush to a vague altar of body-worship, but what a refreshing heresy, his!

Through me forbidden voices,
Voices of sexes and lusts, voices veil’d and I remove the veil,
Voices indecent by me clarified and transfigur’d.

I do not press my fingers across my mouth,
I keep as delicate around the bowels as around the head and heart,
Copulation is no more rank to me than death is.

I believe in the flesh and the appetites,
Seeing, hearing, feeling, are miracles, and each part and tag of me
is a miracle.

Divine am I inside and out, and I make holy whatever I touch or am
touch’d from,
The scent of these arm-pits aroma finer than prayer,
This head more than churches, bibles, and all the creeds.

What a fantastic trampling of the ugly face of Puritanism. Frightfully close to Blessed John Paul II’s Theology of the Body, in fact, but for a lack of understanding that body is an icon that reveals God, not an idol that replaces him.

So close, Walter!

Still, if our culture had followed Whitman’s over-exuberance instead of the cold, calculated goose-step of the Sexual Revolution, perhaps we’d be happy. Sinful — without a doubt — but not without hope.

Alack and alas and all that, as it turns out, we ignored the poets and chose to follow a sexy mob of eugenicists, pharmaceutical corporations, wannabe feminists and moral relativists into the Inferno. And what has been the tangible result? This: We live in an age in which the body is more feared than ever. The Puritans would be shocked by our Puritanism, were they allowed a glimpse.

Think about it. We are supposed to feel more comfortable with exposing skin; loving ourselves, displaying our bodies and otherwise being sexually free, yet cutting is more of a problem than it has ever been, bulimia and anorexia remain at their modern highs, and the rate of cosmetic plastic surgery continues to shoot upwards. The Old Puritans fought the body by denying it what it yearned for. The New Puritans hurt the body, reshape it, and abuse it in a vain attempt to satisfy the yearning.

The Sexual Revolution was framed almost exclusively as a fight for women’s happiness. Yet, in a culture that has consistently promoted this liberation of women — which seems to involve granting them the safe contraception, sterilization, and abortion they’ve been desperately needing for 250,000 years – women are more depressed than they’ve ever been. (I note the fail and press on.) We’ve opened up this safe-sex world to include teens; made porn, masturbation and pre-marital sex a norm, and waddayknow? Teens are more depressed than ever. (This isn’t to claim a direct correlation — though I imagine there is one — but to point out that whatever it is doing, this body-fear certainly isn’t helping.) It was said that this revolution would improve our previously sheltered sex lives. 63% of American women say they’d rather be watching a movie than having sex with their spouses. For all the glorification of the body, we are more distrustful and bored by it then the Puritans ever managed to be. (It doesn’t help that we’d rather take pills that decrease our sex drive than understand the beauty of our bodily sexuality.)

In fact, we’re somewhat worse than the Old Puritans. Their attack on the body was at least aimed towards eternal happiness. Our modern attack on the body — through contraception, pornography, and all the rest — doesn’t make us happy in the slightest. It make us bored addicts. All of this self-loathing moves beyond the fear of the sexual nature of our bodies: Men are no longer comfortable with nakedness in locker rooms, showers etc. — certainly not as comfortable as the generations preceding them. In a somewhat crazy turn of events, we are scared of the sound our crap makes in public bathrooms. This from a race of human beings who used to do this:

..and now invest in speakers that make constant flushing sounds so no one can hear you do exactly what everyone knows you’re doing. As a plus, you can scream “liberation!” and no one will hear that either. I understand that the upside of all this is that we can marry our own sex, but somehow it doesn’t quite balance the scales.

The Old Puritans had at least the courage to call their bodies evil and to fight them. The New Puritan is cowed into a corner by the body, as if it were a ghost. We prescribe pills that shut down a woman’s ovulatory cycle to treat her acne. In fact, we prescribe pills for every possible Woman’s Health Problem that exists, be it endometriosis, PCOS, PMS, cramping, heavy bleeding, or what have you, though we’re fully aware it never addresses the underlying problem. Addressing the underlying problem, of course, would mean confronting the fact of fertility, another concept we’re scared to death of, though we know those who address their fertility have better marriages.

Now to be clear, I’m fully aware that there may be other factors involved in the shaping of our culture into the sad-women, depressed-kids, and timid-men we’ve managed to become — materialism being one of them. But might I give a single observation? We’re doing it wrong. Whatever culture allows us to thrive, it ain’t this one.

So just to see what happens, let’s stop hating on the most beautiful thing in the world — the human body — and instead see it as it is: The image and likeness of God, here on earth. Let’s love our bodies. Let’s not be scared of them. Let’s have awesome, mind-blowing, sacramental sex with them. Let’s see ourselves not as a soul in competition with the body, but as a soul and a body, inseparably intertwined. Let’s avoid the Puritanism that represses as well as the Puritanism that fears. In a word, let’s be Catholic. If nothing else, it’d be the polar opposite of this depressing, modern culture. Until next time!

  • Fisherman

    Awesome article, Marc! Nice use of Walt Whitman, he was a swagtastic poet. And, ya, all the “liberated” girls I know who use birth control and go out every weekend to party’n party’n ya, they ll come to class depressed and frustrated about everything. Its a bummer. Also you should write an article about the Naciremans.

    • Mloustalot1

      quite a coincidence. .my daughter brought home an essay on the Nacirema culture just last week. . opened quite a few eyes in her English class, she said. .

  • Sarah

    Careful there, man. You speak lot of truth, but must you speak it so pessimistically? I’ve been noticing a more and more gloomy outlook on life and on the world around you in your posts recently. Take a walk and try to write something that gives a little more hope in the near future. Your readers need it :)

    • http://www.facebook.com/kickintheface Jacob Timothy Michael Hughes

      Sarah, the near future doesn’t have much hope in it. Unless, of course, you, like Marc and myself, are a Catholic, because sometime in the next week you should be able to witness the beauty of the Mass, and (as long as you’ve been good and not committed any mortal sins lately) will be granted permission by the Lord himself to receive his body and blood. Talk about hope! Where else can we find out hope but in Him?

      • Sarah

        I am Catholic, actually. I just think that our faith doesn’t appear very attractive to outsiders when we’re saying things like “our culture sucks”. True, a lot of aspects of it do, but there’s a lot of good in our culture too, and us Catholics aren’t the only group celebrating those good aspects (which, to be fair, I don’t think Marc was arguing, but that was more to your comment).

        • http://www.facebook.com/kickintheface Jacob Timothy Michael Hughes

          Oh, I wasn’t arguing with you. I was just pointing out that there is some great hope for the future, unless of course one doesn’t believe all that silliness about eternal life.

        • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

          “I just think that our faith doesn’t appear very attractive to outsiders ”

          Well, no, it doesn’t.

          • Musiciangirl591

            again you are an idiot, get out of here, and go hate on pro lifers somewhere else

          • Jmsteve4

            I’m not sure if he can stil read these comments, but though your intenton are right, calling him a idiot is not going to change his opinion of us beng hateful reigion. Let’s prove him wrong onthat front at least

          • Musiciangirl591

            sorry, i have a temper and when it comes to these kind of issues it comes out in a very negative way

          • Musiciangirl591

            i love being annoying :) it shows im getting to you, also on the annoying note, that’s the pot calling the kettle black

    • http://arleenspenceley.blogspot.com/ Arleen Spenceley

      Aw. I think he’s a realist, not a pessimist! (But this is coming from someone who’s been called a pessimist a buncha times, lol). :)

    • http://www.facebook.com/techmage89 Paul Fox

      If you believe as Marc and I do, our hope is not in this world, but in the world to come! No matter how bad things are now, we are assured of God’s victory and our place in His Kingdom.

  • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

    “This sexual repression — as we swiftly realized — sucked, and terribly so. (Thank God it didn’t last.)”

    You need to read your comments-threads, Marc. They’re choc-a-bloc with people gratefully latching on to your teenage attack on contraception, as an excuse not to have sex at all unless you intend to conceive.

    Now I recognise that these people are a tiny and terribly frightened minority: but they certainly exist, no matter that – as you say – their day is passing: despite all that celibate men have said for generations, people still appreciate sex is not to be feared, not to be repressed, but enjoyed for the sake of the mutual pleasure and the emotional relationship between two people.

    That you claim to have “swiftly realised” that sexual repression sucks is … kind of odd, since you’ve been writing nothing much but odes to sexual repression for days and days.

    “So just to see what happens, let’s stop hating on the the most beautiful thing in the world — the human body — and instead see it as it is: The image and likeness of God, here on earth. Let’s love our bodies. Let’s not be scared of them. Let’s have awesome, mind-blowing, sacramental sex with them. ”

    So there’s another girl you’re hoping to date? Don’t forget – comparing her to a cow is a bad idea.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Hector-Maldonado/623200111 Hector Maldonado

      Ahhhh…sex as mutually satisfying…that emotional relationship thing, though…non existent. That being the point. The sexual revolution created the female cad, but it didn’t “free” her…it just made her more readily usable. There is nothing that the male user of women likes better than the sexual revolution…it gave them all kinds of targets…nothing more than human tissue, and since you were just like men, there was less of a need to sweet talk you…after all you were liberated, and you wanted it as much as we did…We’re finished, be gone now! Emotional relationship indeed!

      You see, making love was downgraded to the level of “dropping a plop”. Both cause anxiety and sweats when there is a build up to the event, both grant a certain release and satisfaction after the “climax” of the event, both require wiping afterward, and both leave you relaxed. You see how that comparison works, when there is no respect for the act? Women basically became sexual loos, to be used and left behind. It wasn’t the body we didn’t respect, it was the mind that was a part of you. But if you didn’t respect yourselves, why should we?…

      • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

        “Ahhhh…sex as mutually satisfying…that emotional relationship thing, though…non existent. “

        Sad for you, Hector. But don’t project your inability to have mutually satisfying sex within an emotional relationship on to other people.

        • DudeBro

          “Sad for you, Hector. But don’t project your inability to have mutually satisfying sex within an emotional relationship on to other people.”

          E-Eye,

          You didn’t address anything Hector said there. He’s got a good point…the sexual revolution didn’t liberate women — it just made them more readily useable by men. As Marc has said in a previous post, it’s made them MORE susceptible to domination and abuse by men since the burden of contraception is mostly on the woman.

          • Alexandra

            I really don’t understand why you say that the sexual liberation make women more usable by men. Can you explain why you believe that? I really am interested in your argument, I’m not trying to be snarky.

          • http://www.facebook.com/techmage89 Paul Fox

            Not a complete reply, but in essense, it removed a number of social protections on women, and replaced them with a woman’s “right to choose,” which, without strong support from a family or other social group, can be easily bent out of shape by unscrupulous cads.

            An aside: I think part of the problem is the puritanical influences which still dominate in the US combined with our individualism. It has created a rather ironic situation in which gross anti-feminism masquerades as feminism while true feminism is repressed. Most of the rest of the world (for example, most of Europe) doesn’t have this problem, although they do have others (they’re a bit more into Walt Whitman territory).

          • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

            The fond idea that before feminism no woman was ever mistreated by unscrupulous cads is really just historically plain foolish.

          • Musiciangirl591

            apparently you’ve never been mistreated before…

          • DudeBro

            Thanks for your interest Alexandra (and I don’t mean that in a snarky manner either :-P). What I mean by my sexual liberation argument — really I was just borrowing and adding to what Hector already said. Here’s the deal: before the days of more reliable contraceptives (ie, the 1930s and beyond) sex was more “self-regulating”. Meaning that people didn’t have sex as often as they might have wanted to because they knew of the possiblity of kids — and that the parents may or may not be able to support them.

            In short, the “club/bar scene” just wasn’t popular back then because of the risk of pregnancy. Nowadays however that isn’t the case with all the methods of birth control that exist out there. And particularly since most means of birth control can only be used by women, men are more easily able to swipe women at the bar, sleep with them and then discard them. I can see an argument about women’s choices in this context, but the fact remains, the “consequence-free” concept of sex flatly would not exist without birth control. Additionally, though I don’t have any specific statistics, contraception has enabled more men than before to be sexually active and promiscuous…with what amounts to no immediate consequences.

            On a separate but related note, if something does go wrong with contraception, who gets pregnant and gives birth? Women. Who bears the brunt (and more dire consequences) of STDs? Women. Most STDs affect women more strongly than they do men.

            That was a long-winded response. I hope I answered your question somewhere in there…

          • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

            “On a separate but related note, if something does go wrong with contraception, who gets pregnant and gives birth? Women. Who bears the brunt (and more dire consequences) of STDs? Women. Most STDs affect women more strongly than they do men. ”

            Which is precisely why it’s the act of a responsible man always to use a condom, each time every time, and the act of an irresponsible boy to rail against women using contraception.

          • http://www.facebook.com/kickintheface Jacob Timothy Michael Hughes

            Well, for one, when women are treated like men, they get treated like crap. Men used to treat women like ladies. Many may have been somewhat oppressive, but it wasn’t out of spite. It was because they wanted to protect them from things. Now, men known that women don’t really need men to protect them. The problem is that people believe that just because it isn’t “necessary”, we shouldn’t do it. I open doors for women, not because they can’t, but because they’re beautiful and shouldn’t have to open doors for themselves when there is a man who can do it for her. Notice how that the crowd who is all about respecting and serving women is much of the same crowd who is against all the sexual-revolution nonsense.

          • Anonymous

            “Many may have been somewhat oppressive, but it wasn’t out of spite. It was because they wanted to protect them from things. ”

            I’m going to be generous and assume you’re just too young to know about this first hand, but in the past men decidedly did NOT treat all women like ladies, including their own wives. Men cheated, beat, and generally treated their wives hideously because men could get away with it. I graduated high school in 1981 and two classmates of mine were told by their fathers that the college fund was for their brothers only; girls were to get married. Only. My father-in-law was a good Catholic and an abusive drunk. No, sugar, men were NOT better before the sexual revolution. They simply wrote the story and replaced “abuse” with “protection.”

          • http://www.facebook.com/kickintheface Jacob Timothy Michael Hughes

            1) Your story takes place AFTER the sexual revolution.
            2) It is a gross over exaggeration to state that most men were abusive. My mother grew up in a household run by the kindest man you will ever meet in your life.
            3) Frankly, I didn’t say that they were correct in the execution, but the intent was usually there.
            4) I guess you could say that my argument goes back a little further than what is commonly referred to as “the sexual revolution”. I believe the real problem began in the twenties with the “flapper” movement, or as I like to call it, the “first” sexual revolution.

          • Nelson Linds

            1) Her story is a reflection of the stories BEFORE and AFTER the sexual revolution. There are parallels in history textbooks as well as religious works, including the bible.
            2) Personal experiences neither prove nor disprove the ways of the world, though they can give helpful insight. You and others in this blog are not the first, only or last person to use this though so no harm.
            3) “Impact, not intent”
            4) Another cycle analogy might work here. Especially from a world view. Colonial America onwards could be argued as too short of a time to accurately assess whether the USA has a cycle of sexual revolution. So your argument is spanning a rather large amount of time. Unless you want to restrict it to the flapper movement.

          • http://www.facebook.com/kickintheface Jacob Timothy Michael Hughes

            1) Fair enough, but attempting to prove a point about how things were bad before the sexual revolution by bringing up an example occurring AFTER the sexual revolution is pointless.
            2) The point of the personal example was to counter her own personal example. It was to demonstrate exactly what you stated.
            3)The point is that now, the impact is just as bad, and the intent is also bad.
            4) I’m afraid I don’t understand exactly what you are trying to say here.

          • Alexandra

            Thank you! No men were not better before the sexual revolution and women have always been objectified.

            I’m just gonna go ahead and back off of reading this blog and comments because it’s just too infuriating to think that there really are people who are this deluded.

          • Lauren G.

            “I open doors for women, not because they can’t, but because they’re beautiful and shouldn’t have to open doors for themselves when there is a man who can do it for her.”

            *Catholic girl swoon*

          • Miss Doyle

            Alexandra,

            Without the contraceptive pill, women had a natural time in the cycle when they didn’t have sex.
            With the pill, women are now available to men all the time.
            Without the pill, there was an inherent understanding that pregnancy could be the result of sex – so every decision to have sex kept this in mind which would have naturally dictated whether or not to go ahead.
            With the pill, the possibility of pregnancy is almost removed – therefore, men are safe in the knowledge that if the women is being ‘responsible’ and taking the pill, he can get away with non-committal behaviour because the likelihood of being held responsible to support a resulting son/daughter and that babies’ mother is almost zilch.
            How selfish is that?

          • Musiciangirl591

            women get treated like objects instead of princesses (daughters of the King who is God), women should get some self respect back and learn that it’s not ok for men to use and abuse

          • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

            “You didn’t address anything Hector said there.”

            Hector said it was impossible to have mutually enjoyable sex within an emotional relationship.

            It’s sad for Hector that he finds it impossible. (It’s sad for you if you agree with him.)

            But it’s obviously not a universal truth – your own sad experience blinds you to that. So there’s nothing really to address, except sympathy for him and for you.

  • http://arleenspenceley.blogspot.com/ Arleen Spenceley

    PREACH.

    And, re: “In a somewhat crazy turn of events, we are scared of the sound our crap makes in public bathrooms.” — BWAHAH.

  • Jay E.

    This was a depressingly true post…

  • Alexandra

    It’s bizarre to me how much the Church, and Marc, are going on an on about how Catholics have the best sex and they respect their bodies so much more than anyone else. It’s like they’re trying to sell Catholicism on the basis that they have great sex. Celibate men talking about awesome sex.

    People in the secular world have great sex too. And as much as the Church and Marc seem to be obsessed with talking about sex, it actually doesn’t have a whole lot to do with overall happiness. You can’t show that women and children are having more issues with depression because of secularism or the modern attitude towards sex. You can generalize all you want, but I know personally, that when I finally figured out that there is no reason whatsoever to believe in your god when was I really found happiness.

    • http://intimategeography.wordpress.com/ Barbara

      Alexandra, with all due respect, that canard about “Celibate old men who think they can tell us about sex” is both a fallacy and, frankly, tired. First-hand experience isn’t the only valid type of knowledge there is. Does it matter if your oncologist has had years of study and work in the field of curing Cancer or do you only care that he’s had Cancer himself? The reason why the Church talks about sex is because we live in a culture that is sex-obsessed and the Church is trying to offer an alternative, life-affirming view of it. No matter how “good” you think the secular view of sex is, it still involves severing or suppressing a vital element of human sexuality: its fertility. The outflow of this is an increasing negative view of motherhood, fatherhood, children and the human person itself. If you think that there isn’t a relationship between the “pleasure only” view of the sex and the progressive disregard for human life in general, then you need to open your eyes. The desire for pleasure without consequences is blowing up into a monster that is eating up the weak, the troublesome and the inconvenient, starting with the unborn “products of conception” and expanding to the mentally deficient, the sick and the elderly. Yours is the type of worldview that looks at the novel “Brave New World” and says “if only!”

      • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

        “Does it matter if your oncologist has had years of study and work in the field of curing Cancer or do you only care that he’s had Cancer himself? ”

        Does it matter if your oncologist has has years in the field with cancer patients or if he’s only studied cancer in an ivory tower and has never in his life thought of cancer patients as real human beings?

        You tell me

        • Mary H

          “Does it matter if your oncologist has has years in the field with cancer patients or if he’s only studied cancer in an ivory tower and has never in his life thought of cancer patients as real human beings?”

          Like Mother Teresa teaching NFP in Calcutta?

          So I’m to presume that all of the priests, bishops and the pope involved in promulgating the teaching on contraception have no experience with married couples and have never thought of women as real human beings.

          Just want to get things straight.

      • Musiciangirl591

        one of the many things i hate about this society is that they treat pregnancy as a disease (something to prevent and cure) rather than a beautiful blessing

  • http://intimategeography.wordpress.com/ Barbara

    It’s hilarious how pro-contraception folks claim to love the body and sexuality, except of course for its (le gasp!) inconvenient fertility, which must be brutally suppressed with artificial hormones, creams, by latex wiring parts of it shut and, in the last resort, tearing it open and brutalizing that other body which it tries so hard to create out of the sex act. Feminists retain the one of the worst elements of enlightenment thought, which ironically they tend to rail against, the need to force nature and biology to submit to the will. I did a post on this a month ago.

    http://intimategeography.wordpress.com/2011/12/01/pregnancy-and-control/

    • http://intimategeography.wordpress.com/ Barbara

      *by latex, by wiring parts of it shut… sorry, caffeinated typing. Although latex wiring may be the next one on the list.

  • Anon

    Whoa whoa whoa…You’re really laying *bulemia* at the feet of the sexual revolution of the 60s? That is Post Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc reasoning if ever it existed. Porn is more available and teens are more depressed, therefore porn causes teenage depression? You can do better than that.

    • http://intimategeography.wordpress.com/ Barbara

      Umm, feminists themselves claim that the increasing sexualization and commercialisam of the culture has lead to women’s bodies becoming commodified, an outflow of this is increased negative body image among young women and greater prevalence of eating disorders in adolescence. The two are connected.

    • HME

      He said he didn’t know if there was a direct correlation between the two, but thought there might be. So…not Post Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc then.

  • Del

    Thanks, Marc — for reminding us that we are made to enjoy sex like a connoisseur enjoys a fine Scotch whisky.

    E-Eye and the rest of the world insist that we can do no better than to enjoy sex like a wino enjoys his muscatel.

  • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

    And then the other factor – which really goes far to explain the sheer venom expressed in your last few posts against women who use contraception, and by your commenters as they fumed and insulted and condemned these women – is that of course you’re talking about 98% of Catholic women.

    Indeed, some of the women expressing venom and disgust at women using contraception were probably themselves among the 98% – and hoping no one finds out.

    It makes sense. You don’t really hate the irreligious people who are happily using contraception without any worries about what the Pope thinks about it. (Though you’re vehemently and indeed hysterically against their having the religious freedom not to worry what the Pope thinks.) But you really, really hate the Catholic women who are using contraception – 98% of the adult women in the congregation of whatever church you go to! – because who can you hate best but people so close to you?

    Let go of the hate, Marc. Set it down. Walk away from it. Trust each individual woman’s conscience to do what’s right. Trust women. Stop being a boy. Be a man. Grow up.

    • Alexandra

      That’s kind of exactly what it sounds like. Oh you silly women, the Church knows best. We’ll tell you what you should be doing about your fertility. You had your cutesy little run with feminism, but now us celibate men will let you know what God wants from you. Those Catholic woman who pray and make a very careful conscious choice to use contraception are all gravely wrong and they should be listening to the men.

      In the process, let’s call bulimia a sin, insult a date’s world view publicly, and make assumptions about the quality of other people’s sex lives!

      • AverageJoeCatholic

        Why can’t the Church be right? What logical prohibition is there that says it cannot be right?

        • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

          The point of NPF is that a heterosexual couple can have intercourse without using barriers to conception, because the woman studies her cycle, knows when she’s ovulating, and – providing she pays close attention and he respects her decisions – this is pretty effective contraception: sperm never enters the fallopian tubes except when there’s no possibility of conception because no ripe egg is traveling down the tubes.

          But since that’s exactly what the Pill does – ensures there’s no egg to fertilise therefore no possibility of conception – it’s clear that the Church is and was wrong, just plain logically scientifically wrong – to claim that using the Pill was a sin. If NPF is not a sin, then using the Pill can’t be a sin, since they do exactly the same thing.

          The only difference is, a woman needs to know her partner will always cooperate with her decision when not to have intercourse to use NPF: with the Pill, even if she’s raped, she still won’t conceive.

          • Musiciangirl591

            actually no that’s not how NFP works, that’s the rthythm (or however you spell it) method, NFP uses the tempertature, the size of the cervix and how sticky the cervical mucous is, check your facts before trolling

          • AverageJoeCatholic

            The ends don’t justify the means. The means in this case (artificial contraception) using foreign means to prohibit one of the natural ends of sex. The means of NFP are a natural means to greatly reduce the likelihood that couple will concieve, without prohibiting the achievement of the end via artificial means. Also, Catholics tend not to see sex in the same light as you. You seem to make sex inevitable, as though human freedom is subordinate to sexual “needs” i.e. we need to have sex for the sake of our physical, sexual, and mental health, or something along that tune. Catholics don’t buy into that “need” ideology. That’s why I am one of many Catholic celibates.

          • Mary H

            Sure, the most dangerous and cancerous form of the pill actually works by preventing ovulation. By making a woman’s ovaries stop working right.

            But that doesn’t matter, does it? Any method that keeps the egg from being fertilized is just fine and dandy and exactly equivalent, right?

            Of course, the combined-dose pill ALSO works by preventing implantation of the fertilized egg.

      • Alexandra

        Whether or not the Church is right was not the point I was trying to make. In fact I didn’t say anything about the idea that the Church can’t be right.

        • AverageJoeCatholic

          I quote your post: “Oh you silly women, the Church knows best. We’ll tell you what you should be doing about your fertility. You had your cutesy little run with feminism, but now us celibate men will let you know what God wants from you.”

          The point you were trying to make, correct me if I’m wrong, was that it’s odd that celibate men are telling women what to do about their sex lives all the time.

          Allow me to respond to that then, assuming I’ve got your side right… Just because they’re men doesn’t mean they’re wrong. Nor does your being a woman make you right. The Church’s sexual teaching isn’t just aimed at women. Its for everyone, men and women alike. It’s not to repress anyone’s freedom, its to protect people from a misuse or abuse of sexuality.

          Let’s use the analogy of a soccer game. It has rules. It has boundaries. It has a way it is supposed to be played. If played that way, soccer is fun, exciting, and honest. Now, if a player decides “Screw the rules and boundaries, they limit my freedom and tell me what I can and cannot do with my body. I want to pick the ball up and play with my hands the whole time.” That player has ruined soccer for the rest of the players. He’s made his own game, making soccer less fun, exciting, and honest. Now, granted, the comparison is loose, so don’t draw it out to be too close, but it operates on the same basic principle: the rules are there to facilitate a good freedom, and prevent a bad freedom from ruining a good thing and turning it into a sick perversion of the original good.

        • Teaghan Grayson

          That is true, you didn’t; but the premise of your argument would seem to be that anything that the Church says is right or wrong pertaining to the sexual health of women is immediately deemed sexist, bigoted, and hateful. This makes about as much sense as calling the Church hateful for denouncing the 2003 Iraq War as being unjust. Sure it was the choice of the US government and they had their own personal reasons for choosing that choice of action, but the Church’s reasoned arguments still show that conflict to be unjust, and the Church said as much. Saying something is wrong and spreading hate are two entirely different things.

      • http://www.facebook.com/techmage89 Paul Fox

        You’re doing your best to ridicule the Church, but I’m afraid it falls rather flat. Why should some one person have more wisdom than has been collected by men and women for 2000+ years and passed down through the Church in her teachings?

        Please, read Humanae Vitae and Theology of the Body before you make silly assumptions about what the Church teaches and why.

        Why would you say bulemia is not a sin? It is certainly incredibly unhealthy, and we’re called to care for our bodies because they are a good part of God’s creation.

        • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

          Indeed: I think the evidence is in that Pope Paul VI did not have “more wisdom” than had been collected by men and women for 2000+ years when he declared that use of the Pill was a sin.

          Though possibly he didn’t realise that doing so would merely ensure that 98% of Catholic women would ignore him, the time will surely come when the Catholic Church does one of its lovely embarrassed *facepalms* and admits that er, yes, the Holy Father must have had a bad day that day.

          • Musiciangirl591

            i’m not on the pill and i’m a Catholic woman, and so are all my good friends who are Catholic women…

          • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

            Given the amount of guilt and slut-shaming that it appears is normal for Catholic women on the Pill, you cannot know if all your friends really trust you enough to let you know that er, yes, they’re part of the 98%.

          • Musiciangirl591

            one of them’s studying to be a nun, thanks for calling her a slut

          • Musiciangirl591

            hey, i was almost put on the pill (against my will) before i came to college, so don’t start the slut stuff with me

          • Musiciangirl591

            i never heard or used that expression because i didn’t know what it meant… i went to Catholic school so i never heard of that phrase before

          • Alexandra

            I feel like you might have misunderstood what EE said. Slut-shaming refers to thinking less of a woman for having sex, of thinking of her as a slut. The idea that waiting until marriage is the *right* way to live and that having a good woman doesn’t have sex. That’s slut-shaming. EE is not calling you or your friends a slut, she’s saying that Catholic women engage in a lot of slut-shaming.

          • Alexandra

            I learned about slut-shaming at my Catholic high school. I don’t think Catholic school has anything to do with whether or not you learn about feminist theory. Maybe because it was a girls’ school? We got a pretty extensive education in women’s issues, and none of the very conservative ideas Marc is talking about here.

            My experience of Catholicism was much more liberal and loving, focusing more on making your own decisions with your own informed conscious instead of following the teachings of the patriarchy. That was a Catholicism I was okay with, I’m only just recently realizing how dogmatic some Catholics are.

      • Em

        The Church *does* know best, and those who took part in the Sexual Revolution, whether male or female, are, in fact, silly. The Sex Revolution- which was supposed to “liberate” human sexuality, has, in fact, limited it. Sexuality goes to the core of our being, but with current culture, casual sex is okay because I’m not being intimate with him or her, I’m just using my body in a way that brings me pleasure and he’s not being intimate with me.
        By separating the acts done by body and soul, by subscribing to the idea that *if* we have a soul then what it’s doing has nothing to do with our body, we’re creating a dichotomy within ourselves that will destroy us little by little- mentally, physically, emotionally and spiritually. This is why we are sadder than ever, more depressed and timid than ever.

        Contraception has a lot to do with this, because the Sexual Revolution believed that this will allow women to take pleasure in sex without the fear of pregnancy. However, this is damaging as well, because it replaces the end of sex- which is love and procreation- with an attribute of it, which is pleasure. By seeking out pleasure with an act that is supposed to build love, and- I would argue- by divorcing pleasure from love and procreation, aka, I won’t be happy if I get pregnant with your child because I don’t love you but I want to feel good- we’re stating that the pleasure that comes with consummate love is more important that consummate love itself. BUT THEN, when we seek that same sort of pleasure and don’t feel fulfilled by it, we’re confused as to why. Why don’t I feel truly happy?
        It’s because true happiness and pleasure are the RESULT of consummate love, rather than some sort of stand-alone attribute that can be extracted.

        Contraception has been declared by the Church as intrinsically evil. Just as there is no “prayerful” way to determine if you need to steal a car, there is no “prayerful” way to decide to contracept.
        That’s what Natural Family Planning is for.

        Bulimia is a sin insofar is it is constantly, purposefully willed in the PROPER MENTAL STATE. If I don’t feel like burning the 800 calorie McDonald’s meal I just ate and I force myself to throw up, that’s a sin. However, to have a diagnosed ED because of a skewed mental perception and genuine fear of gaining weight, the victim of the ED would not be held culpable, as it is a serious cross to carry.

        As for making assumptions about people’s sex lives, it’s been statistically proven that couples who DON’T contracept are significantly less likely to divorce.

        Hope this helps. God bless.

        • grace

          Wow, this is beautifully said! Thank you!

      • http://intimategeography.wordpress.com/ Barbara

        Of course, when elite educated feminists claim that *they* know what’s best for women, especially poor women…that’s totally fine. As long as its not celibate old men imposing their views on people.

        • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

          “Of course, when elite educated feminists claim that *they* know what’s best for women, especially poor women…that’s totally fine. ”

          What “elite educated feminists” say in longer words to celibate old men who decree that no woman shall control her own fertility, I think you’ll find poorer women generally say in shorter but no less eloquent language.

      • Don Corleone

        Alexandra: People can make decisions based on principles, or feelings, or maybe a little of both. Involving principles on one’s decision-making is vastly superior to basing decisions primarily on feelings. Principles can be discussed and evaluated. Principles stand on their own. They favor no religion, gender or political party. Most people here appreciate the fact that Marc offers some principles on which to judge behavior and the world; principles that he hopes will make people happier if followed by all. He offers them for discussion and we can comment and evaluate for ourselves. I have seen some good, principle-based objections to his ideas.

        In contrast to this, what you and Edinburgh offer are feelings. Your posts see everything through the lens of emotion. You are defending yourselves or others and come off as defensive. But emotion is a poor judge of ideas and a terrible judge of right and wrong. Emotion only knows religion, gender or political party.

        I’ll give you an example. Edinburgh offers the argument that Marc is too young to know what he’s talking about. This, of course, is a convenient way of avoiding analysis. But, if I take the principle that Edinburgh’s superior age (in relation to him) means she knows more than he does, then she must admit that all those who are older than she is know more than she does. But I guarantee she only wants that principle to apply to Marc and not to her. It’s an argument, but it’s not persuasive.

        Fundamentally, emotional decision-making leads to unintended consequences. If you two are correct that Marc is completely off his rocker, there is no need to get angry. The world agrees with you and we should be one step closer to nirvana. Unfortunately, although the world has far more contraception and abortion than the era I grew up in (when contraception was illegal in many states), sex outside of marriage at levels that were unimaginable when I was young, and a lot less religion, the world is a lot less happy. Maybe that’s because the world lost sight of some of the unintended consequences Marc warns about.

      • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

        Well, Marc ASKED how he could improve his articles, so I’ve made the suggestion. Whether he follows it or not… I doubt it.

      • Musiciangirl591

        i love my fertility <3, i can't wait to have kids in 10 years when i'm married, i want 8 of them :)

        • Musiciangirl591

          well she was very wise :P unlike you

          • Alexandra

            Don’t be so judgmental. Just because you disagree with EE doesn’t mean she’s not full of wisdom.

    • Free Lemons

      I don’t get the sense that Marc is hating any particular group of people. I do detect quite a lot of hate towards a certain fruitless and grey ideology.

      Also, Marc is more of a man than most men and your constant belittling of him over his age is aggravating.

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/DTXXVRWUOM4K4CUCVJR4Y47A54 Kaitlin

      I’m a Catholic woman, I don’t use contraception, and I don’t ever plan to. In reply to your comment that we should “trust each individual woman’s conscience to do what’s right”, I say the the woman must have an informed conscience to make a moral decision (hopefully the right one). Marc isn’t “hating” on anyone; he is telling them the truth. I am not offended by anything he has said.
      By not contracepting, a woman is actually embracing the beauty of her body. It’s not hateful or antifeminist: it’s the truth.

    • Marc Barnes

      EE,

      Which part of the last posts were “sheer venom”? I’ll make sure to change them.

      Yours truly.

      • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

        You could add an introduction to each post – a short paragraph – explaining that you approach this from the angle laid down by Humanae Vitae, that contraception is wrong according to Catholic doctrine, but that you don’t know much about it beyond that (as I’m afraid your articles make clear!) You could then note that while you personally follow Vita Humanae, you respect every individual’s person’s right to make a judgement of conscience about their own religious beliefs, and every individual woman’s absolute right to have only the children she wants, when she wants to have them, and not be forced into unwanted pregnancy and unwanted abortions by religions, religious leaders, or businesses trying to deny her contraception for their own purposes.

        You may need to work on this, since it would undercut the purpose of including them if you wrote them in any style other than pure humility. But I get that you’re not really much for humility: 18-year-old boys convinced they know it all really aren’t.

        • Jmsteve4

          It’s a Catholic blog. Obviously the views are Catholic. Why would he put a disclaimer? Oh, ad he can’t say hetinks that women have an absolute right to choose, because that isn’t his opinion. Don’t tell people to lie EE. And seriously where do you see Priests putting pregnant girlsin chains and forcing theto have the baby. No one is going to be attaked if they mke the wrong choice. Meanwhile, you’re hereattacking us when we’re doing nothing but using our right to free speech.

          • Anonymous

            Your comments are hilarious! I love it when people poorly attempt to advance their own personal agenda with withering, just withering (sarcasm–they are nothing but funny), personal attacks full of sheer venom rather than thoughtfully rebutting the argument. I look forward to your future comments with a bowl of popcorn.

        • Joe Hammond

          Disclaimer for Edinburgh Eye: the below comment is my opinion. Others are free to disagree and make up their own minds. Also, I am a 33 year old male, in case that matters?

          Mark – keep up the great writing! Don’t worry about ad hominem attacks – they persuade, but against the speaker, not the target.

        • Jmsteve4

          Oh oh! I have an idea for a disclaimer actually:

          I believe in one God, the Father almighty,
          maker of heaven and earth,
          of all things visible and invisible.
          I believe in one Lord Jesus Christ,
          the Only Begotten Son of God,
          born of the Father before all ages.
          God from God, Light from Light,
          true God from true God,
          begotten, not made, consubstantial
          with the Father;
          Through him all things were made.
          For us men and for our salvation
          he came down from heaven,
          and by the Holy Spirit was incarnate
          of the Virgin Mary,
          and became man.
          For our sake he was crucified
          under Pontius Pilate,
          he suffered death and was buried,
          and rose again on the third day
          in accordance with the Scriptures.
          He ascended into heaven
          and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
          He will come again in glory
          to judge the living and the dead
          and his kingdom will have no end.
          I believe in the Holy Spirit,
          the Lord, the giver of life,
          who proceeds from the Father and the Son,
          who with the Father and the Son
          is adored and glorified,
          who has spoken through the prophets.
          I believe in one, holy, catholic,
          and apostolic Church.
          I confess one baptism for the forgiveness of sins
          and I look forward to the resurrection
          of the dead and the life of the world to come.
          Amen.

          Tada!!! =)

    • umbar

      Whoa there EdinbughEye…you just love to hand out the personal judgments on Marc, dont you? I understand that the ethics of contraception is a subject many people get heated and emotional about, but why do you have to make these personal judgments and attacks on Marc? Why can’t you stick to the article? It honestly just makes you look like a one sided extremist. As far as i can see, you have presented no real logical argument that addresses a single point Marc made in his post. Comments like yours add very little to the conversation and polarize and divide people more than anything. Or are you just here to pick a fight? In that case, go ahead, but your not helping advance your point of view in the least.

      • Alexandra

        You know why personal judgements about Marc are starting to fly around? Because his last three posts have been about something that does not concern him on any level. He is a young unmarried man and he’s handing out judgments about personal choices that are supposed to be made by a married couple. And people are eating it up. It is bizarre to watch. People are taking sex advice from him.

        At some point it’s hard to not just get tied up in how weird this all is and say can’t you see how hateful you’re being? And clearly you don’t see it as hateful, and that’s even more confusing.

        • umbar

          Please, show me where i have said anything hateful. Im pointing out the fact that judging and personally attacking Marc does absolutely nothing for one’s argument. Zero. Its the personal attacks and judgments that breed division and hate. Yes, Marc is a young unmarried man, but he is not making these claims on contraception, sex, marriage etc from personal experience – at least, ive never seen him say “i base my argument on what i have personally experienced in my life”. Rather, I see Marc constantly referring to outside sources: links, journals, poets, philosophers – writers from many different backgrounds – to support his argument. Im sure everyone would agree, thats how you defend a thesis/argument.

          • Alexandra

            The hatefulness is in the idea that women shouldn’t be choosing to use artificial contraception. That they should defer to the Church’s wisdom. Reframing the issue of contraception so that instead of seeing it as a choice that a woman makes about her own body, saying like contraception allows “men to have sex with women” and that it is oppressive to women. Surprisingly enough a lot of women consider it liberating and have come to this decision through careful consideration. Judging them and their sex life is hateful.

            The way that Marc talks about women is demeaning, and I don’t think he realizes it. That’s what’s hateful. And that the majority of the people reading this blog don’t find his judgements appalling is completely bizarre. I don’t care how many sources you can pull up to show that your ideas are supported by other people, all that says is there’s a lot of other people out there that don’t want to trust women to make their own choices. Sure, when you give women the choice many of those women would chose NFP, but clearly a lot of them chose to use contraception and that choice isn’t the root of all evil the way Marc seems to make it sound like in this post.

          • http://www.facebook.com/kickintheface Jacob Timothy Michael Hughes

            He never once advocated taking away their choices. He’s suggesting a better way, and that while contraception may not be the root of all evil, it’s definitely near the base of the tree. It, like all other sin, is based in pride. He doesn’t judge women specifically. The title of this post is “Our Culture Sucks.” That is an argument that few would reject. He hates the culture. SOMETHING isn’t working. Marc believes, as do I, that, that something is the contraception mentality, which has invaded our culture.

          • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

            “He never once advocated taking away their choices.”

            Marc asserted in this this post that it is an infringement on the free exercise of religion if Catholic institutions – including the school Marc goes to — are required to provide coverage for artificial contraception in their health insurance plans.

            So Marc thinks that if it’s left up to each of the women who is employed by his school to make up their own minds according to their judgement and conscience, whether they will or will not “artificial contraception”, this is somehow “the prohibition of the free exercise of religion” – and he’s against it.

            Let me repeat that. Marc is against all of the adult women who work at his school – his teachers, the school administration, etc – having the legal right to freedom of conscience with regard to contraception. And he is angry, forsooth, with Obama for ensuring that these women have freedom of religion: he thinks that “freedom of religion” consists of the Catholic hierarchy having complete freedom to tyrannise over women.

          • Eric

            Marc opposes those institutions being forced to provide for something which they see as immoral. In that post he said that employees of these organizations have every right to go out and get the contraceptives from other sources (though he doesn’t think they should of course)

          • Musiciangirl591

            HHS mandate is forcing religious institutions (such as the Catholic Church, the Catholic colleges and universities, and the Catholic hospitals and nursing homes to provide insurance plans for their employees that cover BC and abortificients, which is against their conscience, marc is not against freedom of religion because he is against the mandate along with 160+ bishops and many many many many many other people

          • Alexandra

            The lack of exceptions to the HHS mandate is just forcing everyone to obey the law. Free exercise of religion doesn’t apply when what you are doing hurts others.

          • grace

            “Marc is against all of the adult women who work at his school – his teachers, the school administration, etc – having the legal right to freedom of conscience with regard to contraception.”

            Nope. That’s not the issue. The issue is whether the religious institution is required to pay for it. Not whether or not those women can HAVE it. I haven’t priced oral contraceptives, but apparently, they cost about $30 a month. As an example, my prescription co-pay with my current private insurance is $20 per prescription. So it’s not as though oral contraceptives are an extremely expensive medication. Furthermore, there are many avenues by which women can have recourse to these drugs if they so desire. Not all employers cover all medical procedures and expenses. Our current employer does not carry vision coverage. We pay out of pocket for it.

            Women are not required to take contraceptives. It is a choice, and one that the Catholic church is not asking be removed. It is that the Catholic church should not be compelled to pay for it.

            Freedom of religion goes both ways. It is not simply that the state must be protected from “meddling” by religious groups. The flipside to that is that religious groups must be protected from meddling by the state. Both entities must be protected by the First Amendment, not just the one that we feel like we “like” better.

          • Alexandra

            The right to free exercise of religion does not apply when what you are doing is hurting someone else. That is exactly what not providing full healthcare coverage for employees is.

            This isn’t singling out Catholics and their religious beliefs, it is enforcing that every employer that provides a secular service must obey the law.

          • umbar

            So, are you saying that anyone who hates contraception must also hate and distrust women? Is it wrong to try to help another person see that something is not good for them by showing them the facts about that thing? Isn’t it our responsibility as human beings who are compassionate and loving to try to help one another when we see someone doing something harmful to themselves, even if they are doing it with the right intentiones?

          • catholicmom

            As a woman who has been married for 30 years, has never used contraception, and who, as an unmarried virgin, found out about the truth of Catholic teaching on sex and embraced it and the Church, please let me share that Marc speaks the truth with great wisdom. He honors the wisdom of Genesis,’male and female, He created them’, of humans made in the image of God. I recommend that before criticizing on this blog, you read Theology of the Body (in shortened version as presented by Christopher West) and Humanae Vitae.
            Yes, contraception and the fruits of a contraceptive mentality ARE the root of many of the evils plaguing modern society today.

          • http://www.loxpopuli.blogspot.com/ brawkalicious

            No. Contraception IS a root of evil. Unrepentant materialism, a dearth of religious vocations in Catholic families because of the whole 1.7 kids thing, increased pressure on the 1.7 kids to be prodigies ~ on and on and on. Plus it made you a slut!

          • Alexandra

            Wow, I just saw this. Well, I’d rather be a slut than the kind of woman who calls another woman a slut. That’s just incredibly low.

          • Alexandra

            B ah! This wasn’t showing up so I tried a few times and now they show up en masse!

          • Alexandra

            aaaand apparently the comment where a woman called me a slut has now disappeared…

          • Musiciangirl591

            if you were talking about me, i didn’t call you a slut

          • Alexandra

            Nope not you, it seems the comment showed back up. brawkalicious straight up called me a slut.

          • Alexandra

            Wow, I’m just now seeing this! Well, I’d rather be a slut than the kind of woman who calls another woman a slut. I pride myself on being a little more compassionate than that!

          • Alexandra

            Wow, I’m just seeing this! Well, I’d rather be a slut than the kind of woman who calls another woman a slut. I pride myself on being more compassionate than that!

          • Musiciangirl591

            he wants women to have some self respect and not have men treat them like objects to use and abuse, how is that demeaning?

          • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

            I wonder if Marc really thinks the adult women who work at his school are all “objects for men to use and abuse”? If so, it really doesn’t speak well to the school culture.

          • Musiciangirl591

            no offense but you’re an idiot, who takes everything completely out of context in order to fuel his or her own fire against people who are trying to make intelligent arguments against you

          • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

            Isn’t it odd how people use “no offense” as a phatic marker when they’re trying to be offensive?

          • Musiciangirl591

            yeah, funny how that happens… i’m just stating the truth, if all you have to do all day is troll a Catholic blog, i suggest you get a life

          • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

            Do you really think that all the women who are employed at Marc’s school are treated as objects for men to use and abuse?

            If Marc thinks all women who use contraception are objects to be used and abused, isn’t that demeaning?

          • Musiciangirl591

            he wants women to take more self respect back so that they don’t become objects to be used and abused, you take things completely out of context…

          • earthmama

            I am a married woman. My spouse and I used contraception for a time in our marriage. I did feel used during that time. It might be subtle, but yes. I think women do feel used by men in our culture, and no-fault sex may be part of that.

      • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

        “I understand that the ethics of contraception is a subject many people get heated and emotional about”

        Oh yes. As we see in Marc’s recent articles: he gets very heated and emotional, apparently just because lots of Catholics are choosing to use contraception.

        I admit, I’m getting quite a bit exasperated by this attitude -but then I believe everyone ought to get to choose the form of contraception that’s right for them, and if Marc’s making this into a test of religious freedom, he fails.

        “Why can’t you stick to the article?”

        Tried that with the Bible study one. Found that not that many people wanted to discuss the Bible story … those that did, were pointing out that the story of Judah and Tamar doesn’t exactly say what Marc said it did.

        They weren’t popular.

    • Caffeinatedcatholicmama

      Listen. I am a practicing Catholic woman. I DO NOT contracept. I have 2 children (4 and 2) and we are ready for another.

      I am in the 2-5% depending on whatever random statistic you want to throw at me. I want know where I was when the pollsters came by asking their questions about women, the Catholic Church and Contraception.

      I, for one, am glad that Marc takes the onus (and it is a burden to defend the Faith) to stand up and say what people do not want to hear. People hate hearing how we are more depressed than ever, how cancerous tumors feed on the estrogens women voluntarily pump into their bodies (estrogen-dependent tumors) and we then flush into our water supply (because estrogens are too small to be filtered out) thereby affecting our waterlife, how couples have to do more and more “crazy” acts to keep their sex life fresh because their sex life isn’t exciting enough.

      I am a practicing Catholic and those Catholics-In-Name-Only, DO NOT speak for me.

      • Skywalker

        I know many Catholics who don’t contracept, and there are also plenty that have done so and wish they hadn’t. Also, some catholic women have been on the pill for heavy periods, etc. I was, but long before I was married. If I were asked if I had ever been on the pill, I would say yes; if I were asked if I had ever used contraception, I would say no. Depending on how a poll is worded, it might not get the whole story.

        • Caffeinatedcatholicmama

          A friend found the original link. It was a Huff Po article from back in April 2011. The poll was done by… the Guttmacher Institute.

          I kid you not.

      • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

        “I, for one, am glad that Marc takes the onus (and it is a burden to defend the Faith) to stand up and say what people do not want to hear. ”

        That’s odd, because my strong impression is that to his usual audience, like you, Marc is saying exactly what you want to hear. That’s why you like it so much. It doesn’t matter that it’s mostly not true.

    • CaraAlSol

      Ahhh, its nice to see the troll who is always evading other’s argument and trying to look smart and intellectual.

      It’s nice to have you around!, you know?

    • Keeper

      Hmmm not sure if you are intimidated or titillated by the fact Marc is 18, regardless your comments have sadly sunk to anew low completely dismissing your legitimacy. Unfortunate as I once enjoyed reading your view points

      • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

        As noted: relieved. I thought he was an all-the-way grown-up ignorant bigot: knowing he has not yet left high school means he still has a fair chance of growing up a better person.

        • Musiciangirl591

          just because he hasn’t left high school yet, doesn’t mean he should have opinions like everyone else, i’m almost 19 and i have very strong opinions like he does (but i really don’t have the writing skill to do a blog! :) )

          • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

            “just because he hasn’t left high school yet, doesn’t mean he should have opinions like everyone else”

            True, but for a high school boy to think he gets to tell his teachers that they shouldn’t have the right to use contraception makes the boy look silly.

          • Musiciangirl591

            you look silly for assaulting him because of his age

          • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

            How so? Marc is foolish, ignorant, arrogant, and bigoted – this would be true regardless of his age.

            It is his age that makes his foolishness and ignorance excusable, and suggests that he may be less arrogant and less bigoted when he becomes less ignorantly foolish.

            I’m not “assaulting” him for his age: I’m pointing out his age as a defense of him.

          • Musiciangirl591

            just so you know, i’m irish, i can keep this going forever, and just because he’s smarter than you, doesn’t mean that you can trash on his blog, why are you even here if you have a problem with it, get off of here

          • Musiciangirl591

            i’m irish-american, we’ve been fighters for as long as we’ve been here

          • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

            Yeah, thought so: an American wannabe. Real Irish think you guys are funny.

          • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

            Yeah, thought so: an American wannabe. Real Irish think you guys are funny.

        • Annony11

          Except that he’s not in high school. If you look, many of his posts reference the university he attends.

    • Elaine

      Edinburgh, I’m currently dating Marc. I can tell you for a fact that no boy has ever been more kind, conscientious, or loving to me. He respects me the way no other boy has. Granted, this might be because all the boys I know are not yet 20, but it still speaks loads about his maturity level. He doesn’t hate women. He loves one.

      Stop making weird, rage-filled rants, because quite frankly it’s pissing me off. You don’t know him, I do. How about you take your own advice and trust THIS woman?

      • http://twitter.com/BlueFox94 Renard N. Bansale

        ^_^ This reminds me of that post made by Marc where someone commented “You guys should get married!!”

        Just repeating the comment. You guys make an awesome couple ^_^

      • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

        “I can tell you for a fact that no boy has ever been more kind, conscientious, or loving to me. ”

        It’s really impossible to say anything to that, except that given Marc’s sudden embrace of mindblowing sex: er, please see he’s using a condom and that you’re on the pill.

        • lovinglife

          Wow, how sad, is it really that unfathomable to you that two people can have a loving relationship while being chaste. I find your snide comment quite telling

          • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

            I see no evidence in Marc’s latest post that he’s being chaste. Indeed, he’s arguing quite passionately and enthusiastically that Sex is Great. Hence my strong feeling that if Elaine should remember to keep a couple of condoms handy and insist Marc use them – and if he won’t, to hell with him.

          • Marc Barnes

            EdinburghEye,

            It is a sad day. Over the past month, I’ve been receiving emails from readers begging me to block you, complaining that you contribute nothing whatsoever to rational discourse, that your comments are unbearably repetitive, that your prose is weak, and that you may very well be a mechanical troll, designed to regurgitate the talking points of the liberated left.

            I haven’t, not because I disagree with them, but because you’ve been making me look so damn good.

            See, when an 18 year old writes something that infuriates you to such a state that you feel obligated to comment — at length — over 300 times, chances are that 18 year old represents a real threat. I’ve always been flattered by your attention, though I realize it is not I who strikes your heart to the point of fear, trembling, and lashing-out — it is Catholicism.

            You’ve had to resort to lies — Marc says children of gay parents shouldn’t exist! — really awkward distortions — Marc called a girl a cow! (If you get a moment, do take the time the reflect on the difference between using an analogy involving a cow while speaking to a girl and calling that girl a cow. It’s subtle, I know, but it’s there.) — retarded conclusions — Marc is pro-abortion now! — and a general slew of weak ad hominems — Marc is young! — in order to make some semblance of argument. Thus making me look even better.

            All this has been delightful on my end — I can only hope that it has been similarly pleasant for you — because you’ve become the representation of my opposition. Think of it in this sense: Imagine you are a standard heathen — a good man, pleasant to be around, intelligent and articulate — and you read my post. You disagree whole-heartedly. The first comment you see that likewise disagrees is written by a certain EdinburghEye, and you can hardly distinguish the arrogance from the stupidity from the desperation. You are immediately placed in the terrifying position of disliking your comrades more than your enemies.

            Or imagine you’re a man with no strong opinion on the topic at hand, be it abortion, contraception, or gay marriage. While it may be true that a strong argument on my part might push you in the direction of the Church, it is equally a true that an embarrassingly stupid counter-argument may have the same effect. You’ve generously supplied that stupid.

            It is a sad day, because I am losing the enormous confidence-boost you’ve been giving me as a writer. I am hereby banning you, blocking you and deleting your future comments. Why? Because though you may insult me — and I will only gain from it — you may not insult my love. You should have known better.

            Yours truly,

            Marc

          • Lauren G

            OH SNAP!

          • Alexandra

            Did you really just use the R word?

          • Marc Barnes

            yup, denotatively. “slow or limited in intellectual or emotional development or academic progress” (Merriam-Webster)

          • Alexandra

            I’m not sure how you think that defends it.

          • Marc Barnes

            Well, when I say that EE’s conclusions are retarded, I mean to say they are woefully limited in their intellectual development, which is exactly what ‘retarded’ means.

          • Mary H

            Marc, I understand what you meant, but you should still apologize if you haven’t already. It’s not charitable to use a word that causes offense when there are other equally good options.

            And this is not directed at you but at some others: I also find the use of the term “slut” incredibly offensive.

          • AverageJoeCatholic

            Forgive him for not being politically correct. He’s one of those old breeds who has this crazy idea that being authentic and truthful in your speech is more takes precedence over being mind-numbingly sensitive.

          • AttentionDeficitCatholic

            So, the fact that he used a word in a legitimate situation, backed up with a reference from one of the most widely used American English dictionaries, is a poor defense?

          • AverageJoeCatholic

            And the 18 yr old Catholic schools the boring, washed up, liberal feminist adult… Deo Gratias

          • Mary

            As a boring, liberal, feminist, Catholic adult with half a brain, I resent that comment.

            PS – Marc, why did you have to use the word retarded. Seriously?

          • Mary

            Couldn’t reply to Mary H down below, but I completely agree that the use of the word shows a lack of empathy and charity on your part.

          • Alexandra

            I’m not going to argue this point because it’s clearly pointless, but I’m pretty stunned that you think that was the best choice of words and stand by it.

          • Marc

            You’re right. Tis a pointless point.

          • Alexandra

            Marc, there’s a difference between using the word retarded as a verb, where there is no way it can be interpreted as a hateful joke, and using it as a noun where there is a very subtle (almost indistinguishable) difference between the definitions.

            Using it the way you did isn’t a sign of intelligence and a varied vocabulary, it’s just lazy. You could have chosen a more appropriate and less abrasive word. Defending it by saying yeah but I didn’t mean it as an insult isn’t a very strong argument because how is your reader supposed to know for certain where the word is coming from? You’re a better writer than that.

          • Kevin Hernandez

            oh, please. I actually admire Marc for handling this very diplomatically. After all, E-Eye was the one who, in a desperate attempt to provoke a negative reaction, insulted Marc’s girlfriend. Marc didn’t even call him retarded, only his conclusions. Way to go, Marc!

        • Musiciangirl591

          wow, he means mindblowing sex after marriage, using NFP

          • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

            Before any two people have unprotected sex, they should both get thoroughly tested for STDs. Especially when one of them is a boy who says he doesn’t believe in condoms but sex is mindblowing.

          • Musiciangirl591

            did you know that if you abstain from sex until marriage, orgasm is better and more fulfilling than if you don’t, they shouldn’t have to worry about STDs because they shouldn’t have had sex with anyone else, virginity (at least in women) is the best gift a woman can present to her husband on their wedding night, that’s what he’s getting at

          • Musiciangirl591

            purity is awesome though, i’ve never had sex before so i don’t have to worry about pregnancy or disease

          • Musiciangirl591

            and sex isn’t about getting off, it’s a gift between husband and wife saying i love you and i love all of you, it bonds the two together forever as one

        • Pamela Koo

          Why do you think that the only way to want mindblowingly awesome sex is to want it right now? Those of us who stand for chastity realize that it is not the same thing as celibacy, and we talk eagerly of the day when we can have wonderful, awesome and CHASTE sex with our spouses.

          See, we’re not afraid of sex, not in the least. We are, in fact, often more comfortable with our bodies than any supposedly liberated feminist ever could be. I belong to a group of women who regularly talk about their reproductive cycles, or about the weird things their bodies are up to. Try to find that in a group of liberal women. I’ve seen it. They tend to be quite squeamish.

          We recognize that sex was given to us as a gift, to be used rightly like any gift ought to be. We recognize that chastity, rather than a taboo avoidance of sexual activity, is the right use of our sexuality, integrated into our bodies and souls. We know that when God made us, He did not just make us good like the rest of creation but VERY GOOD. And that includes every part of us, including our sexuality.

          I mean, do you really think Catholic families have 5+ kids because we’re afraid of sex? You think Catholic marriages that utilize NFP has a low divorce rate because the couple lies there in bed afraid to touch each other for fear of sin?

          No sir. They know the secret to mindblowingly awesome, holy sex because they work with their bodies the way they were meant to be utilized. Unitive, procreative, and wonderful.

          • Alexandra

            There are many “liberal feminists” who can, and do, talk quite frankly about their bodies and cycles. That’s not something that has anything to do with chastity or promiscuity.

            I’m not sure who you think “liberal feminists” are. One of my dearest friends has a degree in Women’s Studies, a MSW, is an atheist, and has worked for Catholic charities for the past three years with homeless women and children. She’s a fantastic woman. We talk about any and all intimate issue. To me, we are the liberal feminists and we aren’ t who people seem to be making us out to be.

            We aren’t depressed because we’ve had multiple partners and feel like we need to be always available to men. We have respect for our bodies just like any of you do. We make different choices, obviously, but that doesn’t mean we don’t have a respect and reverence for our bodies or sex.

            Sex can be both meaningless fun and a deep loving connection. It’s not either or. Despite the fact that I’ve had multiple partners in my life, I still have a very deep and meaningful connection with my husband. That’s also despite the fact that we’re atheists and “liberal feminists”.

            You can choose to believe that I just don’t know what I’m talking about, that the only way to really experience this special sex you’re talking about is through god, but you have no real evidence to support that. Talk to one of us “liberal feminists” we’re not who you think we are.

          • Musiciangirl591

            how can it be meaningless fun and a deep loving connection at the same time? that really doesn’t make sense to me

          • Alexandra

            Not necessarily at the same time. I’m talking about discreet instances.

          • Musiciangirl591

            it seems as if you mean at the same time, but i’ve been in class since 8

          • Musiciangirl591

            i know Catholic families with 10+ kids, they aren’t afraid of sex at all

          • fromadistance

            One of my friends posted this on Facebook, so I thought I would give my two cents.

            As a member of a family with 10 kids, I can tell you that I in no way want 10 kids of my own…..
            And as someone that had sex before marriage (I was a practicing Catholic then, I left the church a few years ago) then married that same person, I can say that sex before marriage did not hurt our sex life at all, nor has it in any way made us less happy as a married couple. We have three kids of our own now, two that were planned, one that was not, and we love all three of them. But, we are at the point in our lives that we have all the kids that we can handle. Last year we made the decision to start using contraception (gasp!) and my wife settled on a non hormonal IUD. Why did we do this? Because NFP was not working for us, even though we spent plenty of money on books and monitoring machines, because my wife’s cycles were never normal. And the stress from worrying about getting pregnant again WAS affecting our marriage in a very bad way. Do I feel bad for using contraception? No, I don’t, because from time to time I run int0 old friends from my parish, friends a year younger than I, but with seven kids in tow. And I get to hear the stories of back-to-back pregnancies, mental breakdowns, hospital stays for the breakdowns, how the wife wishes she had more help with the kids, but the hubby works full time, etc, etc. So you are correct, Catholics are not afraid of sex, but I also know plenty of Catholics that are not afraid of using contraception, they just won’t admit it to another Catholic, but I hear about it, because, you know, I just used to be Catholic, so I am safe to talk to.

          • Pamela Koo

            My friend,

            I don’t know if you know, or if it matters to you, but IUDs, non-hormonal and hormonal alike, are known abortifacients.

            They irritate the lining of the uterus and prevent any fertilized eggs from implanting into uterus like they should. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intrauterine_device

            I have also heard tales of children who have somehow managed to overcome the odds of their mother’s hostile womb born with the IUD embedded in their skin or clutched in their hands at birth.

            Again, I don’t know if it matters to you at all. But we have no idea how many children have been conceived despite hormonal and nonhormonal contraception only to find no welcome in their mother’s womb because of the methods she is using to prevent their birth.

          • fromadistance

            Yes, I know how IUDs work, I too have this wonderful thing called the Internet, and I have spoken with doctors on the subject. I have discussed the subject of married couples using condoms (sperm and egg don’t meet, no conception) but I was told that there MUST always be a chance at conception if a couple has sex. To that I say, thanks, but no thanks. Honestly, I’m not going to be checking these comments any longer, because I know it will only end in an arguement, as it always does when opposing religious views are discussed.

          • Grace

            I agree with you on almost every point, except the discussing of my fertility signs with others. Danielle Bean says it better here: http://www.crisismagazine.com/2011/five-ways-i-dont-love-natural-family-planning

    • MC

      I also am a Catholic Woman. I used to use contraceptives. I learned about the Theology of the Body and NFP and stopped, and wish to never Never NEVER go back! My marriage, my sex life, my self image and self esteem radically RADICALLY changed and they are ALL now so SO AMAZING! I wish, so so badly, that someone had let me know this before. It would have saved me so much heartache and saved me from just sucky stuff! I thank Marc for informing all women of the poison of contraceptives. It would be such an injustice for him not to. Just as it would be wrong for someone not to let another know that eating small doses of rat poison (even though it might be sold in a fancy bottle and claim to cure you of your ills and bring happiness) will bring about a slow painful death. thank you Marc, for answering the call to be a real man! God bless you! My prayers are so with you!

      (By the way I also know TONS of women who refuse to use contraceptives, Praise God!)

      • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

        “I also am a Catholic Woman. I used to use contraceptives. ”

        And you now feel the need to denounce women who don’t?

        “I thank Marc for informing all women of the poison of contraceptives.”

        Marc is an 18-year-old boy who is, as far as I can tell, still in high school. He can write quite eloquently, but the scale of his ignorance and the praise he receives for expressing his ignorance eloquently do make me wonder how on earth he’s going to handle college.

        • M_berumen1

          With compassion I say, I think you might be understanding the content of my words, and the words of others, with different intent. Please do not turn them into something they are not. If you respond to comments, please respond to what they actually and obviously mean and the point they are trying to make, otherwise the response becomes meaningless and loses it’s point. And attacking the person rather than the content of the comment also does the same. God be with you. May He be with all of us. Blessings!

      • Clareshort79

        I feel exactly the same as MC. I have just started using the Natural family planning method and it has radically changed my marriage, my lifestyle, and it has really changed the sex! (for the better!!!) I can garuntee you that many wives just put up and shut up to keep their marriages together and the men happy. contraception keeps you in this awful situation. When the couple have to work together, following the fertillity of the woman, keeping them selves open to the possibility of another baby – your whole life changes. Your priorities are put back into the correct order and it INCREASES your quality of life from every angle. This is difficult to explain unless you have done it yourself, but all i can say is that i am once again a dignified human being – a real woman. My husband has never been so aware of my body (!) and the sex is special again. I feel feminine and beautiful and my body and our marriage feels sort of sacred (difficult to explain). Contraception is the biggest lie of modern times.

    • http://www.facebook.com/techmage89 Paul Fox

      This is getting rather tiresome. You’re being extremely and unjustifiably defensive in the face of a proclamation of good news.

      I have not, even re-reading with your comments in mind, found any hate towards anyone in any of the articles you have complained about. Marc is simply calling it as he sees it, not judging anyone, and advising that others examine (or re-examine) the matter for themselves.

      Your earlier posts had a facade of reasonableness, but this one is total poppycock and makes me wonder if you’re reading at all the same articles that I am.

      Please develop a more focused and rational line of argument or questioning, preferably relating to what was actually said in the article rather than your own hyper-sensitive reading of it, or go away.

      • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

        “You’re being extremely and unjustifiably defensive in the face of a proclamation of good news. ”

        That Marc’s dating again? Yeah…. we’ll see if that’s “good news” or if his next date turns out like his last: Marc compares women to cows, girl ditches Marc, Marc gets pissy and writes nasty post.

        “I have not, even re-reading with your comments in mind, found any hate towards anyone in any of the articles you have complained about. ”

        Then perhaps what you ought to think about is your inability to empathise with others?

        You don’t see anything hateful in Marc’s desire for gay people not to have equal civil and human rights: in Marc’s expressed wish in comment threads that the children of gay couples just didn’t exist: in Marc’s vehement outburst to Obama that it just isn’t fair to let every individual person have religious freedom rather than having to live by the religious beliefs of the owners of the corporation that provides their healthcare; and his followup outbursts denouncing the 98% of Catholic women who use contraception as evil.

        But I would guess from your handle you’re not actually one of any of those groups of people. So your problem is that you don’t recognise hate when it’s being expressed to/about other people. And that is a problem, isn’t it?

        • JJ3

          It’s really kinda funny how you somehow perceive hatred in just about any statement that disagrees with your own sentiments. The fact of the matter is seemingly that you simply cannot stand to have your own beliefs disagreed with. Thus, you act with the hatred that you “saw” in their argument.

    • Elvin_bethea

      To be honest, the only “hate” and “venom” I see here is coming from you. Marc is not hating upon women (whom I am sure CAN make their own decisions, unless it is regarding the killing of unborn babies, which no person has the “choice” to do), but rather upon the way our society is today. You, on the other hand, are poorly attempting to belittle him basically because of his age, or so it appears here. Correct me if I am wrong, but the way to validly refute a MAN’s (of which I have absolutely no doubt he is based upon the intellectual depth of his posts) point is to, put simply, actually refute it. You have done nothing of the sort, instead dancing around his point and vaguely making jabs at his age. The fact of the matter is that YOU, not him, need to grow up. The poorly veiled insults you attempt to throw at him and his age are something that most rational human beings left on the playground long ago. Your basic lack of fundamental civility speaks volumes of how much YOU need to grow up.

      • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

        “Marc is not hating upon women (whom I am sure CAN make their own decisions”

        Marc writes a lot of hateful posts. He doesn’t like gay people, he doesn’t like gay people’s children, and he doesn’t, it appears, like women very much.

        That’s sad for Marc.Really, it is. Sympathy is required, rather than exasperation.

        “unless it is regarding [abortion], which no person has the “choice” to do

        Depends where you live. In some places, women’s lives are valued so little they aren’t allowed to choose abortion. In the US, prolifers are fighting for America to become one of those countries.

        • Angela Carpenter

          It isn’t that women’s lives are valued so little here (they are very valued in fact), it’s that babies’ lives are equally valued. They have an inalienable right to LIFE, liberty and pursuit of happiness. Just like you. Just like me.

        • Elvin_bethea

          So would you give someone the choice to kill another human simply so they could continue living their sex-filled life? Because that is EXACTLY what abortion is.

          To address your other “point” (I’d rather call it what it is: a personal assault upon Marc), he does not “hate” gays, rather he wishes for them to stop their morally wrong lifestyle. For that is exactly what it is: morally wrong. It is not what we human beings were designed to do. If all were gays, humans would surely die out, which would affect the natural course of the world, something which goes against the Moral Law. Thus it is morally wrong. There is also the fact that we are all called to love our neighbor, something which I doubt he would not do being the exemplary Catholic he surely is. We are all made in the image and likeness of God and should be loved as such.

          You also mentioned him” not liking gay’s children”. This is also not true for the second point I mentioned before: we are all called to love our neighbor.

          As for him “not liking women”, that is also not true, again, because we are all called to love our neighbor. I cannot stress this enough: it is one of those wonderful basic principles upon which Catholicism and, thus, Christianity, is established.

          Take note, please: this would be how you actually rebut an argument, not attack a person.

          • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

            “You also mentioned him” not liking gay’s children”.”

            More accurately, Marc has openly expressed the belief that the children of gay couples should not exist.

            And in these recent posts, Marc has openly demonstrated that he regards the grown women who work at the school where Marc is a student as objects for disrespect and abuse, because he thinks they’re using contraception and they shouldn’t be allowed to do that.

            Really not a love-his-neighbour kind of boy, Marc.

          • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

            “You also mentioned him” not liking gay’s children”.”

            More accurately, Marc has openly expressed the belief that the children of gay couples should not exist.

            And in these recent posts, Marc has openly demonstrated that he regards the grown women who work at the school where Marc is a student as objects for disrespect and abuse, because he thinks they’re using contraception and they shouldn’t be allowed to do that.

            Really not a love-his-neighbour kind of boy, Marc.

    • Musiciangirl591

      he seems like a man to me, he seems very mature for his age, what is your definition of being a man and how does he not measure up to it?

    • Mary H

      “And then the other factor – which really goes far to explain the sheer venom expressed in your last few posts against women who use contraception, and by your commenters as they fumed and insulted and condemned these women – is that of course you’re talking about 98% of Catholic women.”

      Actually, he’s mad at contraception, not the women who use it. And none of us are afraid to say we’ve used contraception. I have. Most of the Catholic women I know have.

      What else would they do? Pills don’t require any knowledge of your body to work. The schools teach kids how to use condoms. Who teaches NFP? Mostly church-connected institutions. And not only do other organizations and people not teach it, they openly disdain what they don’t even know. Like you do.

      But of course, at least when it comes to hormonal birth control, it’s big pharma. The most prescribed medication in the country. Makes loads of money for the pharma companies. So hey, let’s promote women taking an International Agency for Research on Cancer Group 1 carcinogen (same Group as tobacco) every day, just in case they might have sex and might get pregnant. So they get cancer. So it screws up their hormones. Who cares? And as for all those nasty STDs that women are much more prone to, we’ll just have the guy use a condom. No problem.

      No women who promotes hormonal contraception has the right to be called a feminist.

      If you don’t like Catholics, promote NFP yourself so you don’t have to be “contaminated” by the religion. Used correctly, it is as effective as the pill, but if you don’t think it’s easy enough, promote research to make it better. Instead of what we do now: which is to try to make the pill less dangerous than it currently is. Except when we’re exporting hormonal birth control too dangerous even for us in the US, to third world countries.

      As for other contraceptives, they’re bad too, but the very least every feminist should be able to agree on is that hormonal birth control is anti-woman.

      And by the way, if you want to answer me, please provide actual data that proves I’m wrong. You might come up with something I actually haven’t seen before.

      If you just call me names, I’ll assume you don’t have the data.

  • Adelphia

    Marc,
    On the whole, I agree with the sentiment. However, I just want to caution you against marking down certain very real disorders, such as depression, that have existed for centuries- and even among faithful, celibate Catholics with active prayer lives- as mere products of the sexual revolution or some sort of nouveaux- Manichaeism.
    Not ALL of our culture’s failings are direct results of our actions. Sometimes our faults and failings – such as self -loathing and depression- just exist because we’re imperfect creatures who have other spiritual faults that will always be with us.

    • Mary

      I agree completely and wish depression wasn’t lumped in here. I love and respect my body, but my brain chemistry needs help to be happy. You wouldn’t suggest diabetics are making up their disease, please don’t do the same for those of us who genuinely struggle with depression.

      • http://www.facebook.com/beverly.harlton Beverly Harlton

        I also am suffering from depression, Mary. I am 24 and have never had sex, so it’s not stemming from promiscuity. Looking back on my childhood, I think depression is something that has always been a part of me. Since I started going to daily Mass, I’ve found that my depression is not so bad, and it gets worse when I can’t go to daily Mass because of school commitments. I’m not saying medication is never necessary in treating depression, but it’s not a route I want to take, not yet. Since you’re posting here, I’m assuming you’re Catholic, too. If you ever do read this (I see it’s been 9 months since you posted), maybe going to daily Mass might help you, too, if you aren’t already going. Good luck, and God bless. :)

    • Pamela Koo

      In Marc’s defense, there is a noted correlation between increased sexual promiscuity and depression in young women and risky sex behavior and depression in young men – http://www.ajpmonline.org/article/S0749-3797(05)00213-8/abstract

      That’s not to say that there are not other, real causes for depression – I don’t think Marc ever claimed that. My brain chemistry is off enough myself that I take a low dose of an antidepressant to keep migraines away and that has nothing to do with sexual promiscuity since, you know, I haven’t.

      But I do think it is VERY important to point out that having all the supposedly safe sex we want was guaranteed to make us happy, that if we stopped repressing ourselves sexually women would be so much happier, when studies show that the opposite seems to be the case. As Marc says, women seem more likely to become depressed when they pass themselves from partner to partner.

      • Ani

        As a psychology graduate student I’d just like to weigh in on illicit sex and depression. If you read Martin E.P. Seligman (a great pioneer in positive psychology) he talks about how women born around WWI had a 1% chance of having depression. Women born around WWII had a 3.5% chance of depression. Born around the Korean War: 7%. Born around Vietnam: 10%. The people currently in high school and college have a 12-15% chance of having a Major Depressive Episode (which is a really big deal – and this is all from Seligman’s essay titled “Positive Social Science”). That means that if you grew up during the DEPRESSION you had a 1-3.5% chance of depression. You grow up now in our affluent, sexually-liberated, self-esteem boosting culture, you have a much, much, much greater risk. This is not because the chemicals in our brains have changed, and it is not because life is harder. This is because the culture has forgotten God, sleeps around, wants to play the victim, and doesn’t achieve anything worth being proud of. Most studies show that college students who are secure and self-confident have less sex with fewer partners at a later age than their insecure peers with lower self-esteem and self-worth. And that makes perfect sense: someone feels badly about themselves, looks for love and acceptance and approval in sex, feels worse about themselves for sleeping around and ending up unfulfilled, sleeps around some more trying to feel better, and just keeps spiraling.

    • emma wright

      the perfect thing to tell someone with depression- it’s their ‘spiritual fault’… hmmm I get a bit scared of catholics (and I am one) attitude to depression sometimes

  • BlessRheart

    I simply observe my daughter and her friends and I can tell that chastity is the right choice for most women, women that want a healthy lifestyle. By practicing chastity, she doesn’t have to worry about birth control, STDs, unplanned pregnancy, unwanted hormones/chemicals in her body or about future fertility issues. She can date freely, tell people about the chastity ring she wears to remind her that she plans to wait, and demand respect from boys/men she comes in contact with. She was amazed how popular she became when people knew. It takes a great deal of pressure off of a relationship that is just starting. Women tell her they are jealous of her for waiting, that they should have waited…and men tell her that they respect her decision. The men that find her to be a ‘challenge’, she doesn’t make time for, she knows that they have their own selfish desires and she doesn’t want to be a part of it. She is, by far, the happiest, most well rounded 21 year old female I’ve ever met.

    • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

      “By practicing chastity, she doesn’t have to worry about birth control, STDs, unplanned pregnancy, unwanted hormones/chemicals in her body or about future fertility issues.”

      Or not.

      • Michael

        Please tell me you understand the difference between abstinence-only education and actual abstinence.

        • Jmsteve4

          He doesn’t realize the dfferece between having been on the pill for medical reasons, usng a condom before converting, and actively using it to contracept despite claiming to be Catholic.

    • joaquín

      that’s pretty cool. I hope to raise and educate my daughter (s) like that. I’d be so proud. Congrats.

  • Anonymous

    Timid men? Really, you think the biggest problem in the world is that men aren’t sufficiently beastly macho? I now completely understand why Catholic cultures – South America, Spain, Poland, Italy — have such foul misogynist laws and cultures. I take a great deal of comfort, however, in the fact that Italy, Spain, and Poland have the lowest birthrates in Europe.

    • Evans8929

      I think this has little to do with being macho and more to do with being gracious. One of my best friends doesn’t really fit the traditional macho persona (built, misogynist, etc.), but I find him to be one of the manliest men I know. He is a gentleman to the core in that he treats men and women graciously and is courageous in a more modern sense (i.e. Defending Christianity, his deepest beliefs, in the face of many who think Christianity is a bigoted way of life)—Sidenote: Bigots exist in all faith traditions (including atheism), but that’s an entirely different issue.
      The idea of men being timid probably comes from instances of some men feeling as sexually liberated as some women and not recognizing that they still have a role in a relationship as a strong man with a strong woman (i.e. the gracious and courageous).
      As to whether South America, Spain, Poland, and Italy have the most misogynist laws, I don’t know that because I’ve never read any of their laws. However, if they are misogynist, I cannot blame their faults on my faith set, but on the misinterpretation of theirs.

    • http://www.facebook.com/kickintheface Jacob Timothy Michael Hughes

      You misunderstand the word “timid”. Men are afraid to love. Men are afraid to fight for what they believe in. Men are afraid to be men!

    • Angela Carpenter

      Wow-men ARE timid. In respect to the culture they live in. We all (yes all) live in a culture that continually beats men down as foolish, useless and stupid. Men that are strong and protective and take to heart their God-given role as provider are seen as boorish and beastly. Why is that? Why is such bad thing to want to take care of someone? To provide for them? The need for to do that says NOTHING at all about a whether or not a woman as capable of functioning without a man (of course she is). When modern anti-male “feminism” celebrates the hipster milquetoast douchebag, any real man is gonna look beastly. And frankly, they should. Give me a REAL man any day. (Obviously; there are actual beastly men out there who treat women as chattel, but we’re not discussing the lunatic fringe)

    • catholicmom

      How sad that you show such bigotry to other cultures. Shame! :-(

    • Musiciangirl591

      they aren’t real men, i know “men” and i know guys who actually men, if you want a good read, read Fr. Larry Richards’ book “Be A Man”

      • http://www.facebook.com/kickintheface Jacob Timothy Michael Hughes

        Great book!

        • Musiciangirl591

          i’ve never read it before, but i have his second one, and i’ve had the opportuinity of working a retreat with him :)

  • Anonymous

    Meh, we Catholics sin, but most if us are brave enough to admit it. Maybe not loud and proud, but among my girlfriends during candid conversations. And you know the number one reason my girlfriends contracept? Fear. Not liberation, not enjoyment of one’s spouse. Fear of her own inability to properly discern a family plan that doesn’t include pumping herself full of hormones or mutilating her body, as is the case with IUDs. That’s not exactly a ringing endorsement.

    • Grace

      Amen! I think fear is the number one reason we sin at all (in most cases), and the biggest inhibitor of faith and true freedom.

  • http://curmudgeonloner.wordpress.com/ 7man

    What gives women the right to take Birth Control pills and piss out the hormones into the environment, which forces me to ingest their effluent? Why is this none of my business or not the business of any man whether single or married? Such hormones ARE NOT BROKEN DOWN IN THE ENVIRONMENT and the background levels continues to rise!

    It is messing up the world,lowering my sperm count and lowering my testosterone level. This is lowering the overall fertility of the human race to the point that it WILL STOP EVENTUALLY due to mathematical and consequential certainty. It would be getter to stop it sooner, but I have little hope that that will happen.

    Most people are unable and unwilling to see the implications of their actions.

    Also I agree with the basic premise of this article in that society is becomeing more and more repressive in body issues. The linkages to seemingly unrelated things are difficut for most people to fathom. Marc is only discussing the tip of the iceberg. These matters have implications 100 times more than he outlines on this blog.

    • catholicmom

      Excellent point! It makes me wonder about the likelihood of a scenario such as in the movie/book “Children of Men”, in which we lose our ability to have children… maybe this is what the anti-life, “the world is over-populated”, voluntary extinction people want? Just a thought…

    • Skihappy

      Actually, wastewater treatment plants are extremely effective at removing estrogen. Numerous bacteria species capable of biodegradable estrogen into non-reactive byproducts. These bacteria live in all aquatic environments and do breakdown the estrogen into harmless byproducts.

      Additionally, these bacteria are used during waste water treatment. Universally, these bacteria are used in aerobic and anaerobic digesters at wastewater treatment plants. These digesters are large chambers filled with bacteria to digest, nitrogen compounds, phosphors compounds, volatile organic compounds, and virtually all other organic compounds, including estrogen. Estrogen levels in treated effluent wastewater are well below levels dangerous to human health.

      Some pharmaceuticals are capable of passing through wastewater treatment plants without degrading significantly but these are synthetic compounds (such as some antibiotics), not organic compounds like estrogen.

      Occasionally streams and lakes do experience estrogen contamination, however these are almost always located where livestock heavily grazed. In these cases the primary source of estrogen is cattle that are injected with hormones.

      My point being that the chances of experiencing negative health effects due to estrogen originating from birth control is exceedingly small. Unless you drink water immediately downstream from where untreated human waste is dumped there is no need to worry.

      • http://curmudgeonloner.wordpress.com/ 7man

        Really? I think it is not quite so benign and the facts are not totally supportive of your dismissal of this issue. The following study is from 2008.

        Treatment and removal strategies for estrogens from wastewater.
        http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18610787

        Abstract
        Natural and synthetic steroidal estrogens (estrone, 17beta-estradiol and 17alpha-ethinylestradiol) are endocrine disrupters, that are discharged consistently from the sewage treatment works into surface waters, thereby causing endocrine disrupting effects to aquatic organisms at trace concentrations (nanogram per litre). Several years of research have been focused on their fate, behaviour and removal in the environment but primarily in the sewage treatment works which acts as a sink for these compounds. This review attempts to summarize the factors involved in the removal of these chemicals from the sewage treatment works. Biological processes, and to a limited extent physio-chemical properties, play a vital role in the endocrinal deactivation of these compounds. The efficiency of these processes is highly dependent on operating parameters (such as sludge retention time, redox potential, etc) that govern the secondary treatment process of a functional sewage treatment works. Although advanced treatment technologies are available, cost and operational considerations do not make them a sustainable solution.

        • Skihappy

          A good article, just a few things I’d like to mention.

          First, the article reaches the conclusion that biological processes used in waste water treatment are effective at removing estrogen. “Biological processes within the STWs play a central role in removing most if not all estrogenic activity.”

          Second, the article also concludes that wastewater treatment plants regularly achieve the estrogen removal required by regulatory standards using biological treatment processes. As long as the plant is operated properly (adequate retention time, oxygen levels, bacteria levels, etc.) the discharged estrogen levels are within regulatory ranges.

          Third, the “unsustainable solutions” mentioned in the abstract refer to carbon dioxide emissions associated with the increased electrical demand from using UV radiation and Ozone to degrade estrogen. Two removal methods the paper concludes are not necessary when the biological removal processes are operated correctly.

          As stated by this paper in the Secondary Treatment Processes subsection of the Conventional Wastewater Treatment section: “Simply adding a short secondary treatment stage of fine bubble aeration to a domestic STW that previously had only primary settlement produced a sudden and sustained reversal in feminization trends in downstream fish.”

  • Kristen Burden

    It has been my personal experience that sensational, sacramental sex with my husband produces some pretty adorable, extremely intelligent children. It is a side effect that we have been most pleased to live with.

  • http://twitter.com/klmilliard Kirsten Milliard

    I must ask you not to write with so cavalier an attitude about serious menstrual cramps, which you fortunately don’t have to endure. There doesn’t have to be an “underlying problem” to justify treating cramps with birth control. They can be entirely debilitating, and one of my friends used to endure scream-worthy levels of pain. I am against using birth control for every other situation, but if it treats that pain, I’d say it’s worth it.

    • Angela Carpenter

      There are other ways to deal with severe menstrual cramps. As a women, with severe (miss two days of work every month because I can’t stand up type cramps), changing my diet, exercise and seeing a homeopathic doctor who helped diagnose deficiencies has helped tremendously. I am now a fully functioning person every day. And scary artificial hormones had nothing to do with it.

    • http://curmudgeonloner.wordpress.com/ 7man

      I must demand that you cease your attempt to censor others exercising their inalienable right to freedom of speech as affirmed in the Bill of Rights (Amendments to the Constitution of the United States). Your desire to shame and restrict the expression of another person, since it makes you FEEL bad, is not a “right.” You would be more mature if you did not personalize the opinions of another when stated in a general manner.

    • Marc Barnes

      Have you looked into these folks? They can help without the negative effects of b.c pills — http://www.fertilitycare.org/

    • Anna

      I have to agree with Kirsten on this one. I am a pro-life, anti-contraceptive married woman, but sometimes, the hormones in birth control truly are the only thing that can treat debilitating cramps. I suffered from black-outs, nausea, missed work, and severe contraction-like cramps that left me writhing in pain. I was on Yasmin for 5 years before I became Catholic and started looking into other alternatives. After trying every herbal supplement out there, researching alternative treatments, changing my diet, exercising more, and having a battery of tests run…my uber-Catholic (pictures of all the popes in the exam room – yes, really!), NFP-only gyno admitted that yes, sometimes birth control really IS the only treatment for cause-less menstrual cramps. Apparently (in my case), they are hereditary, and if I am like my mother and grandmother, they should dissipate after my first child. One can hope and pray. In the end, I decided I would rather deal with one day of severe pain every month than 21 days of constant chemicals. Obviously, Church teaching doesn’t require that decision of me or any other woman, though.

  • http://www.onemoremum.blogspot.com/ Mrs L

    I’d really love to discuss this kind of post with others who understand and are excited by such good writing. It is getting really difficult to wade through all the trolling comments.

    Dear Dissenters- I do not see Marc making judgements, and, even if he was- you reserve the right to click the little red button in the top corner of your browser if you don’t like what you see. Marc is giving INFORMATION. Desperately needed information in an age where women do not know the least details about their own bodies.
    If YOU trust women so much, trust that they can handle reading this type of thing and take it on board if they like, or if not, be smarter than you and utilise THEIR little red button on THEIR browser.

    Now that that is off my chest, I wanted to share my testimony briefly-
    I was married at 20 and didn’t use artificial contraception because it seemed inherently wrong to mess with my body that way. I come from a Protestant background where my parents, relatives and everyone I know uses/d contraception, so this thought seemed unique to me. Anyway, one blessing came along 13 months after marriage, then another 20 months after the first. It was around this time that I was exposed to beautiful Catholic teaching (and Protestant teaching too actually) about being truly pro-life, choosing to love the children God sends and LETTING GOD SEND THEM. These teachings were like drinking water when I had been so thirsty to find God’s heart on the matter of marriage and children. Does anyone else have an encouraging testimony to share?

  • Manuelmarques Rezende

    this is an amazing post. thank you very much.

  • Lockwood

    I think true happiness can come from following rules, but the rules can’t be based on centuries-old ideas of the role of the body in life. We simply know too much about the way life has originated on this planet to go on thinking that an outside force (a spiritual one, or a supernatural one) determines the results of our actions biologically. The results of sex without the intent of conception are entirely consequential of the two individuals’ temporal states of being; their psychological and sociological states. If either are not prepared for sexual interaction, then the results can be sour for both parties, and their relationship might suffer. Additionally if either parties’ social situation does not allow for such an interaction, say one of them is already engaged in a relationship with someone else, then ill consequences can result from such an interaction. However, if the situation on both ends is sufficient for a sexual interaction without negative consequences, that is, both parties are physically, mentally, sociologically, ready to express their affection then it can often lead to mutual satisfaction and happiness.
    No matter what creed you follow, this is the 21st century and repression and regression should not be welcome in anyone’s moral philosophy. In light of biological scientific evidence on our nature as organisms of Earth, repressing those forces which allowed for the forging of our species is not only obsolete and archaic but it has the capacity for stifling progress.

    I will concede this: our culture does suck, but for different reasons.

  • Emiller787

    This has become my new favorite Catholic blog to read. TRUTH. :)

  • Anonymous

    The culture does not care one wit about the things of God, and given half a chance will do it’s best to try and redefine the church, and th Christian faith, wherever possible.

    We must be on constant guard. This situation will never end (not until Christ returns, anyway)

    Thanks.

  • Deb

    When I began reading this I was sure you were leading into something about all the Facebook breastfeeding protests yesterday, the reason for which is a prime example of what you wrote about. Breasts, made by God to feed infants are now offensive in such a light because society had turned them into a sexual object. Pathetic.

  • David J. Morgan

    If only the world knew what it really meant to be catholic. Your little posts might be helping though Marc. Good work.

  • JoMarch

    Applause for this article and its many strong points, with one caveat – please read source texts from the Old Puritans and update your assumptions about their teaching. “The image and likeness of God, here on earth. Let’s love our bodies. Let’s not be scared of them. Let’s have awesome, mind-blowing, sacramental sex with them. Let’s see ourselves not as a soul in competition with the body, but as a soul and a body, inseparably intertwined,” is lifted directly from many sermons and devotional books published by Puritans when they ruled the religious roost in Northern England and New England!

  • Musiciangirl591

    another amazing article! keep it up and don’t let the trolls get you down, you’re wise beyond your years! =)

  • Matthew Maule
  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1838570798 Michael Yost

    I’m diggin the Tintin cartoon. :)

  • Musiciangirl591

    that’s not a lie, i hope you know, i seriously had no freaking idea what that was

  • Anonymous

    I’d rather not actually. Anyway, just as an observation, it seems that you are the “random troll”, not I.

  • HME

    Hello all commenters/debaters,
    I believe this “debate” is, for the most part, sinking to the level of personal attacks. Because personal attacks are pointless unless your plan is to declare war on an individual over their personal possessions, I suggest that you stop. If your next step is declaring war on an individual, please notify him/her of that fact and go elsewhere to battle it out. If not, please do not waste time by doing something pointless.
    Good night and have a pleasant tomorrow.
    (Pro-life FTW)

  • grace

    “It’s a question of freedom of religion. Ought those religious institutions have the right to override the religious freedom of individuals?”

    The Catholic church is not the only employer in the United States. Those people have the right to seek employment elsewhere, or to obtain their contraceptives by another means.

    • Alexandra

      I hate the skinny columns, so I’m going to reply in an independent post.

  • beaglegirl

    “Unlike pregnancy, using the Pill has no causative effects that may make a woman sterile in future.”

    Pregnancy causes sterility?! Why didn’t anyone tell me this before I started having children?!

  • beaglegirl

    “Among all women who have had sex, 99% have ever used a contraceptive method other than natural family planning. This figure is virtually the same among Catholic women (98%).” (Emphasis mine.)

    “Among sexually active women of all denominations who do not want to become pregnant, 69% are using a highly effective method (i.e., sterilization, the pill or another hormonal method, or the IUD).”

    “Some 68% of Catholic women use a highly effective method, compared with 73% of Mainline Protestants and 74% of Evangelicals.”

    http://www.guttmacher.org/media/nr/2011/04/13/index.html

    The 98% figure represents any Catholic woman who has used contraception at any time during her life. Some people may use it and then stop later, some people may use it for medical reasons while unmarried or celibate.

    Further, if 2% use NFP, 68% use sterilization, the pill or another hormonal method, or the IUD, that leaves 30% of Catholic women. Some of those must be celibate, some must be using barrier methods, and some may be practicing “providentialism”. To say that 98% of Catholic women are using contraception today is inaccurate at best.

    • Alexandra

      The last page of that pdf says of currently sexually active Catholic women who are not trying to get pregnant 87% are using contraception, 2 % are using NFP, and 11% use no method. So still, overwhelming majority are currently using contraception.

  • Alexandra

    Grace, the truth of the matter is sometimes the Catholic employers are the only, or the biggest, employer in the area. Especially with universities, sometimes there are not other jobs available, and while people might want to find jobs elsewhere, they don’t always have that option.

    If Catholic universities and hospitals are allowed an exemption from the HHS mandate, that could leave a lot of people without access to affordable healthcare. Because the HHS mandate is absolutely constitutional it is really unfair of the Bishops and those lobbying against the mandate to be making the fuss that they are. An exemption puts the people employed by Catholic institutions at a distinct disadvantage. 98% of Catholic women use birth control, clearly they would appreciate easier access to it.

    • Mary H

      You imply that the only way to make sure women have access to free contraceptives is if it is covered by the HHS mandate. It’s not. The law could set up a separate provision for that, if it is deemed necessary.

      The constitutionality of the HHS mandate is exactly what the question is. You assume the very thing that we are contesting. Apparently, the Supreme Court used to interpret the First Amendment to mean that a law couldn’t just neutral, it couldn’t place an unfair burden on a person’s expression of religion. The case that seems to have changed that is the Smith case in 1993, which ruled that smoking peyote as part of a Native American religious ritual was not covered by the First Amendment so the anti-drug legislation applied.

      By requiring the people who run Catholic institutions to buy contraceptives, you are requiring them to sin or break the law. It’s that simple.

      The converse is not true. By allowing Catholic institutions an exemption, we are not making it impossible to provide free contraceptives to whoever wants it. We are just saying that it has to be done without making Catholic institutions pay for it.

      And as for the 98% figure, that is really misleading, especially since it includes any Catholics who have ever used contraceptives at all. Which includes me, of course. It also appears from the links I’ve followed that they quote the number of Catholic women who have ever used contraception and compare that with the percentage, 2%, of women who are currently using NFP methods, which would no longer include me because I don’t need it anymore.

      I’d also be interested in seeing information about the sample size and the wording of the poll question. If you can get me a link to more data, I’d really appreciate it.

      • Alexandra

        The peyote ruling is a whole other thing because peyote probably shouldn’t be illegal to start with.

        The very last page of this pdf shows that 87% of sexually active Catholic women of reproductive age who are not actively trying to get pregnant use artificial birth control.

        http://www.guttmacher.org/pubs/Religion-and-Contraceptive-Use.pdf

        • http://www.facebook.com/kickintheface Jacob Timothy Michael Hughes

          Alexandra, that doesn’t include the unmarried Catholic women who don’t use contraception, because they follow the Church’s teaching that sex should be reserved for marriage. It would be more fair to review the contraceptive usage of ALL Catholic women, sexually active or not, who are between the ages of, say, 18 and 55. That would make sense, and produce a much more reliable statistic on how many Catholic women REALLY use contraception.

  • lucy

    I am curious to know more from those that oppose Marc’s views. Do you think that our culture has a healthy attitude toward sex? The way sex is portrayed in popular culture, i.e t.v. and music. Pornography and the hook-up culture. The sexualization of young kids (especially girls). High rates of mental illnesses, especially ones concerned with body-image. Etc…

    Do you believe these are problems but have reached a different conclusion on there cause, or do you think this view of our culture is unwarranted?

    • Alexandra

      I like your question! I do see issues with the sexualization of young girls and the body image issues, but no I don’t think there’s a problem with pornography or sex in the media.

      For one, pornography has always existed, it’s just more available now because of the internet. I’ve seen a lot of old Victorian Period pornography and it’s actually quite funny. It’s graphic and pornographic, and sort of on the edge of being art just because it’s old and well staged, but it’s always so humorous and awkward because it’s all posed. As long as we’ve had cameras, we’ve been taking sexual pictures. I don’t see pornography as an evil.

      I do think that there are a lot of tasteless things in the media that demean women, but certainly not all of it. And I don’t think that this is a new thing. The issue of sex in the media is complicated, but mostly it’s not all bad and the issues that exist aren’t new.

      Body image issues have always been around as well. I mean what do you think corsets were about? I just don’t think most of these issues are new, I think they’re in our face now because of the easy access to many kinds of media, but the media also allows us to share positive things and create change.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1125166276 John C. Wright

    Brilliant. Bravo.

  • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

    Don’t worry, you’ll grow out of that!

  • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

    “The constitutionality of the HHS mandate is exactly what the question is.”

    If provision of contraception is made a religious issue, that the First Amendment requires that the government protect everyone to ensure that all can make their own decisions on contraception, no religion can enforce their will on others. So the HHS mandate is perfectly constitutional – the fury of the Catholic Church at religious freedom demonstrates the unwillingness of the Christian Right to respect the US Constitution with regard to individual free will.

  • http://twitter.com/suckbitchyou Max Monastyrev

    I find something very wrong with this article, but I can’t put my finger on it.
    In one of your articles about contraception, you mention that a living thing must attain its natural end, or natural potential. Is this article suggesting otherwise? In regards to your last paragraph, you finish of with initiating the reader to your inclination (Catholicism), fair enough, this is your blog. But is it impartial? It’s beautifully written, it has merit, but by your solution being ‘Catholicism’ is it not mere esotericism?

  • http://twitter.com/suckbitchyou Max Monastyrev

    I find something very wrong with this article, but I can’t put my finger on it.
    In one of your articles about contraception, you mention that a living thing must attain its natural end, or natural potential. Is this article suggesting otherwise? In regards to your last paragraph, you finish of with initiating the reader to your inclination (Catholicism), fair enough, this is your blog. But is it impartial? It’s beautifully written, it has merit, but by your solution being ‘Catholicism’ is it not mere esotericism?

  • Kaity

    Some people need contraceptives to balance out their hormones. I for one, have a hormone imbalance and require outside influences to prevent extreme and crippling pain every time I have a period. And you know what? I’m a virgin and am waiting till marriage to have sex. Banning contraception completely or calling it sinful is really unfair. I don’t have sex, because it is against my faith to engage in sexual activity before I am married, but in the meantime, I still need the contraceptives to balance out the hormone levels that are in the body I was given by God. Our bodies are magnificent, but we are not without problems because we are not yet in Heaven. People have diseases, imbalances, and disabilities. Preventing a possible solution of one of those imbalances because you deem birth control pills or hormone replacement therapy to be sinful is crazy.


CLOSE | X

HIDE | X