Friday, July 31, 2015


My grandmother was an unusual Mormon lady. She believed the Kinsey's report on human sexuality should be mandatory reading and that was during the early 50's in Salt Lake City, Utah. 

I was at her house one day while the national news was on. A protest was being held at a Planned Parenthood and my Grandma started a commentary focused on the male religious leader who was screaming at the cars in the Planned Parenthood parking lot. 

"Oh sure. Are you going to take those babies home? Are you going to feed them? Are you going to make sure they get an education? Of course you aren't."

I hadn't consider the larger issues but after that the rabid fisticuffs between Pro-Life and Pro-Choice appeared to be missing a very fundamental point. 

How about stop pretending that kids won't have sex unless they are educated about sex? 

How about stop pretending that kids won't have sex if they don't have access to contraception? 

How about stop pretending that girls have value only in being an uncontaminated baby machine? 

Well, it was just a thought. 

"[The Catholic Church] is obsessed with sex, absolutely obsessed. Now, they will say we, with our permissive society and rude jokes, are obsessed. No. We have a healthy attitude. We like it, it’s fun, it’s jolly; because it’s a primary impulse it can be dangerous and dark and difficult. It’s a bit like food in that respect, only even more exciting. The only people who are obsessed with food are anorexics and the morbidly obese, and that in erotic terms is the Catholic Church in a nutshell." Stephen Fry

"There is a cure for poverty. It is a rudimentary one, it does work, though. It works everywhere, and for the same reason. It’s colloquially called ‘the empowerment of women.’ It’s the only thing that does work. If you allow women control over their cycle of reproduction, so that they are not chained by their husbands or by village custom to annual animal-type pregnancies, early death, disease, and so on. If you will free them from that, give them some basic health of that sort—and if you are generous enough to throw in, perhaps, a handful of seeds and a bit of credit—the whole floor, culturally, socially, medically, economically of that village will rise. It works every time." Christopher Hitchens (debating the "morality" of birth control)

"I do not believe that just because you're opposed to abortion, that that makes you pro-life. In fact, I think in many cases, your morality is deeply lacking if all you want is a child born but not a child fed, not a child educated, not a child housed. And why would I think that you don't? Because you don't want any tax money to go there. That's not pro-life. That's pro-birth. We need a much broader conversation on what the morality of pro-life is." Sister Joan Chittister (member of the Benedictine Sisters)

"Contraceptives unlock one of the most dormant but potentially powerful assets in development: women as decision-makers. When women have the power to make choices about their families, they tend to decide precisely what demographers, economists, and development experts recommend. They invest in the long-term human capital of their families." Melinda Gates 

It might be just a suggestion. . . 

but it is a pretty good suggestion. 

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