Pope Benedict XVI’s edict allowing the use of condoms in the fight against AIDS is a major milestone passed in the slow journey that the Roman Catholic Church is taking towards enlightenment. Granted, perhaps this is not the relaxation of a key doctrine in Catholic dogma that many people would like to think it is. The comment made by Pope Benedict is framed more by the need to arrest the spread of the dreaded HIV virus and not as a tacit acknowledgement that runaway population growth is a major problem in impoverished nations.
As such, population explosion denialists like the honourable Senator Vicente Sotto III can rest easy as the Church remains consistent with its infamous go-forth-and-multiply commandment. And resting easy is, well, easy when one’s mind remains imprisoned by primitivist thought…
“I still believe we have no problem on population and that our statistics are bloated […]” – Vicente Sotto III – Senator, Republic of the Philippines
But then there is also reason for more progressive minds to rest easy. Catholic dogma is like a big dike of human hubris foolishly built to keep Mother Nature at bay. And if there is one lesson to be learned from one of the mothers of big dike failures — the New Orleans disaster in the aftermath of Hurrican Katrina — it is that you do not build an entire framework of human existence below the water level of Mother Nature’s powerful inclinations.
Nature will find a way.
Pope Benedict’s let’s-use-condoms-to-fight-AIDS is the hole in the proverbial dike. A sprung leak cannot be unsprung.
In a statement that reveals the astounding lengths that the clergy would go to to secure its continued grip on the minds of its flock…
Bishop Deogracias Yñiguez of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines said that the rare cases where condoms could be used should be spelled out by Church leaders.
And what else is there to spell out when the good Bishop already makes the Church’s new position quite clear here:
“If a condom is used as a contraceptive, certainly it will be condemned by the Church,” Yñiguez told The Associated Press. “But to use it to avoid a disease in specific circumstances, the church can take another mind-set.”
Whatever you say Padre.
Perhaps, going down that same line of thinking, Mr Bishop, you might also want to re-visit the laughable concept of “annulment” and “spell out” to us once again what it was originally intended to be used for. Considering that the Church’s position on divorce is an equally well-spelled-out No-Way-José, “annulment” has become a convenient proxy for the more civilised way of ending a marriage that our men-in-robes have so bizarrely made taboo in our society. Indeed, annulments are routinely shrink-wrapped and sold over-the-counter nowadays by our enterprising compatriots in that most honourable profession — Pinoy-style lawyering. Just ask our resident First Expert on the matter and she might even score you a product catalogue.
For those who have got to this point and still do not get, er, the point, I’ll spell it out…
So what if the Pope says it’s ok to use condoms for whatever reason?
The fact that the use of “annulment” as a rubber stamp for “legally” ending a marriage in the Philippines has become a banality is a testament to the simple principle that governs even the smallest minds on the planet: Nature will find a way.