Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Roman Catholic Bishops, Contraception and Hypocrisy


I can keep my mouth shut no longer.  Yea, I know, for those of you that know me, that is a funny statement.  First let me say, I hate offending people and I really don’t like pissing people off, especially friends who’s beliefs are different than mine.  With that being said,  if you don’t like what I am saying, click off.  I mean go back to whatever you were doing before reading this blog.  Skip this one.  Forward it on to people who think like you so that they can pray for my lost soul.  
You all should know by now my religious stance. If not read this Let's Start With Something Heavy and Controversial: Roman Catholicism   and this, Back To The Catholic Guilt and even this  More Catholic Frustrations and Daily Life.  Ok we all caught up?  Good.  The most recent Roman Catholic controversy is over the Health and Human Services mandate that states that employers must provide contraception through their healthcare plans.  The Catholic Bishops went ape shit over this; complaining that it is against their beliefs, and to be forced to pay for contraception would be an infringement on their religious freedom.  They and every other right wing conservative jumped on this bandwagon and cried fowl.  So President Obama presented them with a compromise.  The Catholic organizations that have employees will NOT have to pay for contraception.  The insurance companies will be on the hook for those services and offer them for free.  Done.  Sounds reasonable.  The Bishop’s original argument was that it was unfair to make them pay for services they found morally wrong.  OK so now you don’t have to.  Bill Moyers explains it so eloquently here.  http://billmoyers.com/content/bill-moyers-essay-freedom-of-and-from-religion/  
Apparently this was not good enough according to Archbishop Chaput. Don’t even get me started on their “reasoning” behind not wanting to allow birth control.  They are holding it akin to abortion!  Really, conception begins at erection now?  Really? Here is his whole whinny tirade regarding the president’s accommodation to the Church.  
http://catholicphilly.com/2012/02/archbishop-chaput/current-hhs-mandate-is-not-a-real-compromise/    He is basically saying, you gave us what we asked for but not what we really want.  We don’t want contraception to be available to our employees, period, regardless of their beliefs.  Better yet, we don’t think that ANY employer should have to fund ANY service, drug or procedure that they find morally wrong.  What kind of hypocritical can of worms are they opening up?   

So if my husband’s employer decides he does not think that blood transfusions are morally right, because he is a Jehovah’s Witness, are we going to have to pay for our own blood transfusion out of pocket?  If my employer is a devout Christian Scientist am I going to have to pay for all of my healthcare out of pocket? If an employer is a devout worshiper of the Blue Man Group and they believe that everything is fixed with blue paint, will their employees be made to paint themselves blue instead of getting an antibiotic? Are you friggin kidding me?  What the fuck do these celibate, unmarried, MEN know about what my MEDICAL FEMALE NEEDS are?  
I would have gladly invited the entire HHS mandate panel that testified, (here is a visual. Just so you know, they all have penises) to sit in on the pregnancy and birth of my last baby.  Since they did not let me recap.  

I suffered from placenta previa and was bleeding profusely therefore forced to bed rest. I spent 9 weeks in the hospital on bed rest fighting to keep the lil guy inside my belly.  After 9 weeks and they could not stop the bleeding they had to deliver my son.  Before they could cut open my belly, they had to put a stint in my femoral artery, (with no numbing or anesthesia) to cut off the blood supply to my uterus so that I would not bleed to death while they were delivering the baby.  This process was more excruciating than they had imagined it to be and I had to be held down by 3 nurses (2 of them were male.) After they did the c-section and my baby was taken directly to the NICU, because he was so small and unable to breath, the surgeon was unable to tie my tubes because of the damage that she needed to repair before closing me up.  My uterus and placenta were fused and she had to dissect the placenta which was completely covering the cervix, from my uterine wall then sew me up as fast as she could.  After she was done, she leaned over the curtain that separated my face from my body and with a sweat stained mask and hat she said, and I quote “Do NOT get pregnant again!  If you do, you or your baby will most likely die.”    So if they were sitting in on that part of my life maybe they would understand the importance of birth control in my future.  But I doubt it.  
I am so fired up by all of this. The Bishops and their cronies go to Washington and they are not only spending money (where do you think they stayed when in DC?  Where did they eat? How did they get there?)  and time, but voracious energy and commitment. They are giving to this NON issue more fervor and more gravity than anything I have seen them do in the past.  They call us cafeteria Catholics.  HA! Where was their righteous indignation and fury when their fellow priests were raping children?  Where were they when groups Justice4pakids.org were and still are trying to lengthen the statute of limitations for victims of childhood sexual abuse.  OH that’s right, they were right there ON THE OPPOSING SIDE.  To make sure that victims were NOT given that justice. 

Where are these Bishops when the poor and hungry are being pushed aside by the the ultra wealthy conservatives who think, they are not MY problem. Hell, they are so close to these right wing conservative rich men who would rather take away my right to birth control than lend a hand to a homeless person. Why aren’t the Bishops up in arms over people who have and don’t bother to give?  Oh and Catholic organizations have been providing health care coverage for viagra and vasectomies.  Why aren’t the most Reverend Bishops putting a stop to that?
OH why oh why do I get so fired up about this?  Am I really able to change anything?  I made the stupid mistake of trying to comment on the Archbishop’s Weekly address that I posted above.  I was respectful yet firm.  In the string of comments, these “Christian Catholics” called me “wrong” “hypocritical” “smug” “annoying” “self-exalting” I was accused of “obtusely refusing to accept the teachings of the Church” and my priorities were brought into question.  Why did I bother to go back there and read all those comments?  Why did I bother to try to restate my points?  I guess I just felt the need to be put down and called names.  
But this is my blog now and I get the final word.  Hey Bishop’s, here is my plea, here is my cry, Get your red capped heads out of your asses and start working towards spiritually leading your congregation!  You are not doctors, scientists, or politicians.  You are not the hand of God.  You were called to be HUMBLE servants of Christ.  You say you believe in God, you say that God created us in His image.  So if we are all created in God’s image and we all have God given brains, let us think for ourselves.  Better yet, let the people who study science and medicine use the brains that God gave them to help us.  Use your brains to help us find peace and spread goodwill and love!  Why am I talking to these idiots?  It is fruitless.  So there it is.  I have more, but I am spent. I don’t want to be angry.  
I have a good life.  I have beautiful children, a wonderful husband, a great family and amazing friends. But my parents brought us up to stand up when you see something wrong, and if you can, do something about it. They told us to defend those that are being hurt or oppressed.  It is what they told me that Jesus did.  My teacher, Sr. Carmela Anne IHM in St. Alice told me that Jesus promoted love, tolerance and stood up to hypocrisy.  Even if you don’t believe in God or Jesus, it is a really good way to live.  I just wish there was a Church out there that got it.  

8 comments:

Jen said...

Well said!!! I loved every word of it. I'm so glad you wrote this. I'm with you, I have no idea if what we write will ever make a difference, but at least it's out there and we didn't go quietly!

Momma said...

Thanks Jen. LOL, no one can ever accuse my Italian ass of "going quietly!" Thanks again. It means a lot that YOU liked this!

CherryBlossom said...

Love all of it! Sometimes i get tired of fighting so hard for the things i believe in but some how I can't seem to stop! I support you!

Momma said...

Thank you. I know that my blog is not doing much, but at least it gives me a voice and maybe a voice to those who agree. It is always nice to know that there are others out there that get me!

L. said...

Right on! Seriously, what do these guys know about women's health care and needs anyway? They're going by rules most likely made up by men, saying they're from God, and...ugh. *shakes head* Anyway, you get no condemnation from me, man. *thumbs up*

Momma said...

Thanks L. I appreciate your comment. It is nice to know I am not alone in this thought process!

Bethany said...

Well done, Michelle. You laid it all out there. Very courageous and well written. The Church is lucky to have someone like you still hoping, praying and asking them to change. I had to divorce myself from the entire institution. Two of my oldest son's best friends are only children. Of two gay couples. Their Moms are 4 of the best people we know. Wonderful women. Loving partners. Hard-working professionals. Exceptional parents. I couldn't in good conscience teach my child that our religion wants us to believe these women won't go to heaven because they've found happiness in their shared love. F that. I disagree with more than I agree with when it comes to the church. When my husband asked me why I wanted to raise our kids Catholic, it took me a long time to answer. My answer? Because my parents will be disappointed if I don't raise our kids Catholic. That wasn't reason enough. So we have a house of heathens. "I'd rather laugh with the sinners than cry with the saints...the sinners are much more fun"

Momma said...

Thanks Bethany. Yea, Billy Joel! It is the hypocrisy and arrogance that is chasing me away. I too, can't raise my boys in it. Luckily my parents are pretty open minded when it comes to this and they are still Catholic but agree with me too. And I am sure I will have a fired up rant about the treatment of homosexuality sometime in the future. Why 2 adults can not get married in the United States of America, is beyond me. Thanks again.