The Conservative War On Women

Conflating institutional hypocrisy and individual hypocrisy doesn't really seem like a productive line of conversation.

SixteenBlue:

Yep. I'm an MD and I have lots of friends in the medical field. They smoke, drink, eat too much fatty food, and engage in sexually risky behavior, just like everyone else. If people who've seen lung cancer kill their patients in the most horrific ways possible continue to smoke, then anything's possible on that score.

I hear a lot of stuff under patient-doctor confidentiality, much of it ugly. Hypocrisy doesn't strike me as being particularly uncommon, especially in those who are most vocal about their virtues. A guy who doesn't have drinking issues doesn't make a big deal out of it. He simply doesn't drink. It's the guy who makes a big deal out of it that thinks about it a lot.

Rallick:

If that's the case, why is it fighting tooth and nail against a Catholic-affiliated organization providing contraception for women?

You'd have to be Catholic to understand. The short version is that the question of contraception came up and the Pope at the time used a rare authority of the position to rule against contraception, so now the Catholic Church is obligated to take a stance against it as an organization whenever it comes up. There's a bunch of theology surrounding that decision point and thereafter, much of it boring. You'd think talking about sex would be more interesting.

LarryC wrote:

Stengah:

Maybe this is another cultural disconnect? Over here we expect the people that proclaim themselves to be bastions of morality to at least pretend to follow the rules they lay out for others.

That seems unrealistic. That would be like expecting the foremost political proponents of freedom worldwide to lend you a hand in overthrowing a dictator, instead of granting that guy political asylum.

No, it's more like expecting the foremost political proponents of freedom worldwide to not be a dictator themselves (or at least not lend their name, money, and authority to known dictators).

Tanglebones wrote:

Conflating institutional hypocrisy and individual hypocrisy doesn't really seem like a productive line of conversation.

I don't see the distinction, here.

Stengah:

Eh. If people profess to believe in the equality of ALL MEN, and laud that as a political virtue every which way you turn, you'd expect more than just them not being tyrannical. "Our freedom is good, but yours is conditional on our interests," sounds a bit like the kind of hypocritical BS justifying slavery.

No, it's more like expecting the foremost political proponents of freedom worldwide to not be a dictator themselves (or at least not lend their name, money, and authority to known dictators).

Ah, so you understand after all. Why be so hard on the Catholic Church then?

LarryC wrote:
Tanglebones wrote:

Conflating institutional hypocrisy and individual hypocrisy doesn't really seem like a productive line of conversation.

I don't see the distinction.

Stengah:

Eh. If people profess to believe in the equality of ALL MEN, and laud that as a political virtue every which way you turn, you'd expect more than just them not being tyrannical. "Our freedom is good, but yours is conditional on our interests," sounds a bit like the kind of hypocritical BS justifying slavery.

You would expect more than just that from them, but if they can't even meet that expectation, they rightly lose any recognition as "foremost political proponents of freedom worldwide."
Not being a tyrant is the least you expect from them. No one ever said that was the only thing you expect of them.
So with the Church railing so hard against abortion because they believe a it's a person from the moment of conception, I expect them to at least be consistent with that.

Just so we're clear, "the least" would be not being friendly with dictators, protecting the interests of dictators, and giving them moral support and financial and military aid, that sort of thing?

As for the abortion thing, so far as I know, the Church only conditionally applies personhood to embryos, even in official theology. Some applications yes, some no. For instance, no one expects a priest to find a small ball of cells and give it last rites; that would be just ridiculous. The case here is "wrongful death" which is incumbent on the doctor in the first place, and only applies to the hospital at all in that they didn't do due diligence as an employer. That's fairly more complex than plain contradiction.

Stengah wrote:
LarryC wrote:

Ah, so you understand after all. Why be so hard on the Catholic Church then?

My aversion to organized religions, coupled with how vehemently they've been railing against a woman's right to choose. If they weren't so involved with the effort to limit contraception and ban abortions, I wouldn't care as much. Truth be told, I don't care that much because it's just a group I already considered to be hypocritical assholes proving me right.

Shrug. You see what you want to see. In my own country, the Catholic Church has fought tooth and nail against the RH bill, which was only recently passed. I respect their right to do so, just as I understand that they will continue to fight it going forward. That's just political necessity based on their stated ideals, even though it's costing them money, prestige, and influence. I see this as integrity. They already know they're on the losing side of the battle against contraception. They're not stupid. They just fight because they're obligated to.

All of this aside, isn't practicing what you preach not even the issue here? It's not just hypocrisy, it's the fact that the Catholic Church is defined by it's message and in this case, the message is contradictory. A fetus is both a person and not a person, depending on how it impacts the people making that decision.

It also matters because many people (including myself) believe that many of the policies advocated to stop abortion are far less focused on protecting fetuses and newborns than they are on punishing women who have sex out of wedlock.

The fact that they do not seem to mind not regarding the fetus as a person when it is inconvenient to them supports the idea that they are more interested in punishing women than protecting babies.

LarryC wrote:

Ah, so you understand after all. Why be so hard on the Catholic Church then?

My aversion to organized religions, coupled with how vehemently they've been railing against a woman's right to choose. If they weren't so involved with the effort to limit contraception and ban abortions, I wouldn't care as much. Truth be told, I don't care that much because it's just a group I already considered to be hypocritical assholes proving me right.

Edit -

LarryC wrote:

Just so we're clear, "the least" would be not being friendly with dictators, protecting the interests of dictators, and giving them moral support and financial and military aid, that sort of thing?

The "least" would be not being a dictator themselves. One could theoretically be friendly with dictators people in an effort to turn them to freedom, but it'd need to be done in a way that's consistent with what whatever titles you gave the person.

It entirely doesn't matter though because this is a hypothetical world freedom hypocrite, whereas the Church thing is actually happening. When a group says that other groups affiliated with it cannot support laws supportive of birth control because they believe fetuses are people, the least you would expect is that group to not allow groups affiliated with it to use "fetuses are not legally people" as a legal defense when they've caused the "death" of a fetus.

Larry, if you think that the Catholic church is so crummy and ridiculous that you find a comparison between them brutal dictators pretending to believe in human rights to be accurate then, um, why are you Catholic?

SixteenBlue wrote:

All of this aside, isn't practicing what you preach not even the issue here? It's not just hypocrisy, it's the fact that the Catholic Church is defined by it's message and in this case, the message is contradictory. A fetus is both a person and not a person, depending on how it impacts the people making that decision.

Actually, it depends on the question being asked. You'd have to present a better knowledge of the whole Catholic position on the extent of personhood of embryos and fetuses than I have to claim that the Church is acting in ways that are inconsistent with official doctrine.

I'm fairly sure you won't find contradictions. They've been at this a long time, and they tend to examine what they say and don't say fairly extensively.

Demyx wrote:

It also matters because many people (including myself) believe that many of the policies advocated to stop abortion are far less focused on protecting fetuses and newborns than they are on punishing women who have sex out of wedlock.

The fact that they do not seem to mind not regarding the fetus as a person when it is inconvenient to them supports the idea that they are more interested in punishing women than protecting babies.

The Church isn't particularly focused on protecting babies at all. It's interested in the morality of life and how to consider that question. Statements about political situations only comes out of theological discussions regarding those issues. Catholic theology is heavily based on logic - they start out from established moral assumptions and build their way out using rigorous logic.

Now if you suggest that the American Catholic Bishops are using that theology to advance their own culture-sensitive agendas, I would say that's plausible. However, to suggest that the Vatican itself and its concerns over all Catholics is subject to its concern over an American political fight seems rather far fetched. It has bigger fish to fry.

Yonder wrote:

Larry, if you think that the Catholic church is so crummy and ridiculous that you find a comparison between them brutal dictators pretending to believe in human rights to be accurate then, um, why are you Catholic?

This is a personal tangent. I do so for the same reason that I think the Theory of Relativity is reasonable theoretical science even though Einstein was so unreasonable as to deny the usefulness of quantum mechanics long after every other scientist thought that the idea was no big deal.

The validity of the message transcends its speaker. Just because the doctor telling you to quit smoking is, himself, a heavy smoker, doesn't mean that what he's telling you is a bad idea. This is related to Ad Hominem fallacy.

LarryC wrote:
Yonder wrote:

Larry, if you think that the Catholic church is so crummy and ridiculous that you find a comparison between them brutal dictators pretending to believe in human rights to be accurate then, um, why are you Catholic?

This is a personal tangent. I do so for the same reason that I think the Theory of Relativity is reasonable theoretical science even though Einstein was so unreasonable as to deny the usefulness of quantum mechanics long after every other scientist thought that the idea was no big deal.

The validity of the message transcends its speaker. Just because the doctor telling you to quit smoking is, himself, a heavy smoker, doesn't mean that what he's telling you is a bad idea. This is related to Ad Hominem fallacy.

But you can think that the Theory of Relativity is reasonable without viewing Einstein as the infallible mouthpiece of your God.

Am I alone in thinking that SEALs and Delta will actually be looking forward to being able to recruit women? Special and covert operations being what they are, having highly trained female operators in the theater is definitely an enormous edge. There is more to Spec Ops than the rigor of PFT.

Yonder:

I can also view the moral validity of the Catholic Church's moral assumptions without viewing them as the infallible mouthpieces of God. In fact, our priests themselves often tell us that they are fallible - human. That their message should endure within us despite their individual failings.

I assume your religious traditions are different.

LarryC wrote:

Yonder:

I can also view the moral validity of the Catholic Church's moral assumptions without viewing them as the infallible mouthpieces of God. In fact, our priests themselves often tell us that they are fallible - human. That their message should endure within us despite their individual failings.

I assume your religious traditions are different.

Isn't one of the primary things makes Catholicism Catholicism the idea that the Pope is infallible?

Within limits. The Pope is the Vicar of Christ and the human leader of the Catholic Church. He has a great deal of authority and one hell of a soapbox. However, not everything he says is the word of god. In other words, he's only infallible when he invokes certain powers for certain occasions.

Stengah wrote:
LarryC wrote:

Yonder:

I can also view the moral validity of the Catholic Church's moral assumptions without viewing them as the infallible mouthpieces of God. In fact, our priests themselves often tell us that they are fallible - human. That their message should endure within us despite their individual failings.

I assume your religious traditions are different.

Isn't one of the primary things makes Catholicism Catholicism the idea that the Pope is infallible?

I think they gave up that claim a while ago.

LarryC wrote:

Within limits. The Pope is the Vicar of Christ and the human leader of the Catholic Church. He has a great deal of authority and one hell of a soapbox. However, not everything he says is the word of god. In other words, he's only infallible when he invokes certain powers for certain occasions.

So is there a lengthy casting time? Or is it an at-will power, and he just has to declare it beforehand?
Kidding aside, does anyone know if Benedict invoked them before saying:

With regard to the embryo in the mother's womb, science itself highlights its autonomy, its capacity for interaction with the mother, the coordination of biological processes, the continuity of development, the growing complexity of the organism.

It is not an accumulation of biological material but rather of a new living being, dynamic and marvelously ordered, a new individual of the human species. This is what Jesus was in Mary’s womb; this is what we all were in our mother’s womb. We may say with Tertullian, an ancient Christian writer: “the one who will be a man is one already” (Apologeticum IX, 8), there is no reason not to consider him a person from conception.

Stengah:

Nah. Definitely not. It's a pretty big deal when the Pope uses that power. It's not the sort of thing you see every decade. The last time it was used was to issue Humanae Vitae upon which the current stance of the Vatican on contraception is based. It's not categorically against all forms of birth control - just specific ones, usually the barrier, hormone, or drug-related therapies. Accurate determination of fertile periods and avoidance of sex during those periods is apparently legit.

Pope Benedict's statements are just an elaboration of the prior determination.

Today Larry has taught me that Catholicism isn't a belief, but rather a quantum superposition of all beliefs that are and are not both positive and negative. Now that we have supposedly found the "god" particle, maybe if we pour more money into the Large Hadron Collider we can find the Blessed Virgin particle as well.

LarryC wrote:

Stengah:

Nah. Definitely not. It's a pretty big deal when the Pope uses that power. It's not the sort of thing you see every decade. The last time it was used was to issue Humanae Vitae upon which the current stance of the Vatican on contraception is based. It's not categorically against all forms of birth control - just specific ones, usually the barrier, hormone, or drug-related therapies. Accurate determination of fertile periods and avoidance of sex during those periods is apparently legit.

Pope Benedict's statements are just an elaboration of the prior determination.

Okay, so the idea that a fetus is a person from the moment of conception is not actually the word of the Catholic God (as delivered by a Pope), it's just the non-divine stance of the Catholic Church. It's still not wrong to expect them to either adhere to it, nor to have them lose any credibility on the subject when they don't. They themselves have been pushing to the law to recognize fetuses as people with all the rights that confers, so the fact that they themselves don't recognize them as people (when doing so would cost them money) completely undercuts their arguments to change the law, and further clarifies that their anti-abortion agenda is more concerned with controlling women than protecting the unborn.

I agree with the church that they shouldn't be the targets of a wrongful death lawsuit, but they definitely deserve be the target of some kind of lawsuit for their doctor failing to perform his job or even answer the phone while on-call.

Stengah:

That depends on the law of the land, doesn't it? Who is the target of a valid lawsuit is a legal question, not a moral one.

I don't agree with your premises. In the first place, you haven't demonstrated that you really know what the Catholic stance is on the kinds of personhood privileges Humanae Vitae grants to fetuses and embryos and how it relates to the morality surrounding culpability in wrongful death scenarios.

If you want to castigate the hospital for being inconsistent with Church teaching, you must first demonstrate that you know Church teaching, not the rhetoric you think represents Church teaching. I have already clarified that Church morality on fetal personhood is not the same as it is for people who have been born. That is consistent with a difference in moral treatment of the two should death arise. Moreover, this moral responsibility doesn't imply accepting legal liabilities. The Church is not the state and shouldn't ever be the state. It's a fairly long and tenuous connection you're establishing there, based on a strawman of your own devising.

Finally, it is my understanding (which may be wrong) that the Pope did, in fact, use his authority as the voice of God to deliver Humanae Vitae, which means that it is to be accepted as the word of God. I'm sorry if I wasn't clear on that. What isn't the word of God is various takes and elaborations on it. That's different.

LarryC wrote:

Stengah:

That depends on the law of the land, doesn't it? Who is the target of a valid lawsuit is a legal question, not a moral one.

I don't agree with your premises. In the first place, you haven't demonstrated that you really know what the Catholic stance is on the kinds of personhood privileges Humanae Vitae grants to fetuses and embryos and how it relates to the morality surrounding culpability in wrongful death scenarios.

If you want to castigate the hospital for being inconsistent with Church teaching, you must first demonstrate that you know Church teaching, not the rhetoric you think represents Church teaching. I have already clarified that Church morality on fetal personhood is not the same as it is for people who have been born. That is consistent with a difference in moral treatment of the two should death arise. Moreover, this moral responsibility doesn't imply accepting legal liabilities. The Church is not the state and shouldn't ever be the state. It's a fairly long and tenuous connection you're establishing there, based on a strawman of your own devising.

Finally, it is my understanding (which may be wrong) that the Pope did, in fact, use his authority as the voice of God to deliver Humanae Vitae, which means that it is to be accepted as the word of God. I'm sorry if I wasn't clear on that. What isn't the word of God is various takes and elaborations on it. That's different.

I read Humanae Vitae and didn't see any point in it where they talked about when a fetus is granted personhood, which is what I was looking for. If you know of an instance where the Pope uses their Voice of God power to clarify such, let me know.
Ad hominem aside (I think I do understand what the Church's stance on such a matter is though, considering I found the quote where the Pope flat out said it was granted at conception), I'm not using my interpretation of Church teaching, I'm using the direct words of the Church's highest authority. Are you telling me that the Pope doesn't know what Church teaching is?
The main issue here is that when the Church is trying so desperately to have it's moral stance on a matter enshrined in law, the Church damn well better demonstrate that they adhere to it themselves before they expect to force others to. I've already said that legally, I think the Church is correct (they let two fetuses die, not two people, so they're not guilty of wrongful death). But that correctness comes with the cost of severely undercutting their efforts against abortion and birth control (which I am fine with since I disagree with them on both issues anyway).

To me, it shows very clearly that they don't truly believe it. If they really believed it, they wouldn't let their lawyers use that defense. And if their insurance company was running the defense, then they would settle instead of letting that defense be used on their behalf.

But they don't really believe it. What they really believe is that women need to have less sex, and fetuses are just an exquisitely painful handle they can twist in an attempt to force compliance.

Nah Malor if you look at what they said, it's carefully worded to be a legal position and not imply belief:

“Under Colorado law, a fetus is not a ‘person,’” Catholic Health Initiatives wrote, “and plaintiff’s claims for wrongful death must therefore be dismissed.”

Besides, I get the feeling you guys won't accept the other side of that coin - that protests, intimidation, shaming, etc are all okay because they believe abortion is murder. The law either applies to them or it doesn't, belief has nothing to do with it.

NormanTheIntern wrote:

Besides, I get the feeling you guys won't accept the other side of that coin - that protests, intimidation, shaming, etc are all okay because they believe abortion is murder.

It's not all black and white. I don't agree with those activities because I don't agree with their premise, however that doesn't mean that I don't accept that their activities are far better justified by their beliefs than, for example, people that murder others because a cartoons made fun of their religion.

NormanTheIntern wrote:

Nah Malor if you look at what they said, it's carefully worded to be a legal position and not imply belief:

“Under Colorado law, a fetus is not a ‘person,’” Catholic Health Initiatives wrote, “and plaintiff’s claims for wrongful death must therefore be dismissed.”

Besides, I get the feeling you guys won't accept the other side of that coin - that protests, intimidation, shaming, etc are all okay because they believe abortion is murder. The law either applies to them or it doesn't, belief has nothing to do with it.

I understand just fine that they are using a legal defense for this case. But this legal defense stands in direct contradiction to their beliefs and even their mission statement apparently. But, I'd say a Catholic organization using this position does still weaken the Catholic world's authority over the "life begins at conception". They're using a legal argument in a court case, no one's denying that, but why did they let this case come to court? Why not work to settle this outside of court in a way that adheres with their beliefs?

NormanTheIntern wrote:

Nah Malor if you look at what they said, it's carefully worded to be a legal position and not imply belief:

“Under Colorado law, a fetus is not a ‘person,’” Catholic Health Initiatives wrote, “and plaintiff’s claims for wrongful death must therefore be dismissed.”

Besides, I get the feeling you guys won't accept the other side of that coin - that protests, intimidation, shaming, etc are all okay because they believe abortion is murder. The law either applies to them or it doesn't, belief has nothing to do with it.

While this is a logical view, they don't apply it to all cases. When the law asks them to violate their religious beliefs (i.e. insurance that provides birth control) they throw a fit. They don't accept that it's the law and follow it. In this particular case, their religious beliefs are being violated but since they're being sued, they suddenly don't mind.

They want it both ways and that's bullsh*t.