Birth Control Debate


I found this link last week, don't remember where. It's a debate between Janet Smith and Charles Curran on Humanae Vitae. I was able to listen to it last night at work.

It's a two-hour long debate, so budget some time. I'm far from an objective listener, but it was hard to hear it as anything but an overwhelming victory for Janet Smith. She had data and common sense on her side.

Most unbelievable moment: After opening statements and rebuttals, the debaters had a chance to ask each other questions. Smith asked Curran why it is that those of his camp have never critically engaged the thinking of John Paul II on birth control and human sexuality. His answer? JP2 didn't really contribute anything new to the discussion.


Smith did make one mistake, though. At one point, she said (and repeated about a dozen times) that ordinary Catholics don't have time to read all the documents of the Church and study moral theology to inform their consciences on the subject. She said it falls to pastors and theologians to make the teachings accessible, and draw couples into the thinking of the Church on the issue.

That is all exactly right, but later, when speaking about couples who actually live the teachings of the Church, she (repeatedly) praised them as couples who have read the documents and live by them. I know she didn't mean to say that you have to read the documents to understand the Church's teachings, but it almost sounded like she was trying to have it both ways.

All in all, a great performance by Smith.

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This page contains a single entry by Papa-Lu published on April 5, 2006 9:52 PM.

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