A growing concern today involves the role of pornography as the next generation’s instructor in human sexuality. For Catholic parents, this raises the critical challenge of how best to approach these matters with their children, given that kids as young as 8 or 9 may already be acquiring information and viewpoints about human sexual behaviors from Internet pornography. I would like to present six practical suggestions for parents, culled from parental testimonies and insights, from other experts in the field, and from former users of pornography.
James Parker came out at age 17 and later entered into a relationship with another man. He worked as a gay activist for a while, but his personal experiences of intimacy and human sexuality eventually led him to grasp that “same-sex marriage just doesn’t exist; even if you want to say that it does.” He concluded that trying to persuade those with homosexual inclinations that they can have marriage like heterosexual couples is basically to “hoodwink” them: “Deep down, there is no mystery between two men, ultimately.“
While some parents might be happy to avoid the awkward conversations that arise around human sexuality by allowing the school system to provide their children’s sex education, it is nonetheless important for parents to recognize that they are the most significant teachers and models for their own children as they mature sexually.
Kim Davis, the now-famous clerk in Rowan County, Kentucky, who became known for her refusal to issue marriage licenses, was arrested and incarcerated [earlier this month]. She had refused to affix her signature to licenses being sought by two people of the same sex, even after the Supreme Court had legalized gay marriage, noting that this would force her to act against her conscience and her deeply-held religious convictions.
Recently a phenomenon has come to light that involves the partnering of biomedical researchers with abortionists for the purpose of securing a reliable supply of human tissues and organs.
Embryos are as human as you and I; they’re simply younger, smaller and more vulnerable. They ought to be accorded the same respect that every human being deserves, as a matter of basic human rights. Human dignity demands nothing less.
At the beginning of December, the American Civil Liberties Union filed a sweeping federal lawsuit against the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops over its Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic hospitals, alleging that the Directives, with their prohibition against direct abortion, resulted in negligent care of a pregnant woman named Tamesha Means. Ms. Means’ water broke at 18 weeks, leading to infection of the amniotic membranes, followed by spontaneous labor and delivery of her child. The child lived only a few hours.
Guilt has gotten a lot of bad press recently. We live in an age where guilt is practically always something bad, something to get past with the help of a shrink. Particularly when discussing sex, people will declare that religion and morality do nothing more than make people feel guilty. Andrew Aaron, a sex and marriage therapist in New Bedford, Massachusetts seems to subscribe to this view: “Through centuries,” he writes, “religious education has associated sex with what is wrong and sinful rather than what is sacred. Instead of an expression of the divine, sex is suspiciously regarded as weakness of the flesh. The result of this influence is that sexuality, a natural part of being human, is tainted with shame, guilt, and ambivalence.”
Physicians will sometimes prescribe a hormonal regimen (in the form of a hormonal contraceptive like the Pill) to treat certain gynecological problems like heavy menstrual bleeding, dysmenorrhea (painful periods), PMS (pre-menstrual syndrome), endometriosis, or other conditions like severe acne. In these cases, the Pill is used not as a contraceptive, but as a therapy for a medical condition.
Imagine a deadly scenario like this: a successful businessman is rendered unconscious by medical professionals to help him heal after a serious car accident, using powerful pharmaceutical agents to cause a medically-induced coma. A few days later, a business competitor, wanting him dead, enters the hospital and kills the comatose patient.
Several states are considering legislative measures to let physicians prescribe (but not administer) a lethal dose of a toxic drug to their patients, thereby assisting their patients to commit suicide. This is known as physician-assisted suicide. Advocates of this practice assure us that this can be a good choice for someone who is dying, or who wants to die.
He says a healthy spiritual life can help a person to turn a negative experience into something positive.