this is my commandment: that you love one another

By Diogenes (articles ) | Jan 20, 2005

"While we can say that, objectively, the use of condoms is wrong, there are places where it might be licit, or allowable, as when there's a danger of intercourse leading to death. It would be wrong to take a special case and make it a universal law." -- Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor

A thought experiment. Say your father is a physician who, after a needle-stick with contaminated blood, becomes HIV-positive. Naturally your mother, your sibs, and you yourself are horrified at the news. One evening a visitor to your home, cognizant of the situation, reaches into his briefcase and offers your father a handful of condoms -- "For Mary Pat's sake."

What would you think of your father if he accepted them?

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  • Posted by: - Jan. 22, 2005 8:01 PM ET USA

    I wouldn't like it if my father wanted to continue having sex with my mother even though he was HIV positive knowing that 1. The Catholic Church does not permit the use of condoms and 2. There is no grarantee that even though my father used a condom my mother would not become infected. 3. Every time he had intercoure with her my mother would wonder "Am I becoming infected?" I wouldn't like it if, to my father, marital love - mutual giving - was all about his being able to have sex. Sh

  • Posted by: Vincit omnia amor - Jan. 22, 2005 12:08 AM ET USA

    Thanks to all for their thoughtful and clear thinking on this issue. Re: the lie of condoms protecting against AIDS (and other STD's)... I wonder what would happen if those using condoms and getting AIDS were to sue the various agencies and other groups promoting "safe sex" for false and misleading advertising??? I think they would have a case! Can you say "class action?" ching, ching.

  • Posted by: - Jan. 21, 2005 10:36 AM ET USA

    We need to stop reacting to the opposition's argument that the condom is THE solution to the AIDS problem. WE must set a NEW agenda in the public arena, & that means treating AIDS as a very complex problem as is human sexual behavior & demonstrate how the Church's time-tested moral teachings on human sexuality are valid and life-saving. But first we must get a western society that is pushed toward random sex at every turn to see thru the many lies being advanced by an alien culture of death.

  • Posted by: - Jan. 21, 2005 9:58 AM ET USA

    DCM's comment is on the money, as we all know. Another thing is the false sense of security which the life-prolonging drugs being used probably give to infected people. In addition to some length of life, they are given more opportunity to infect others. Thus we confront modern man's ultimate fear of death. The UN will spend many million $ to prolong life while being complicit in spreading the disease and making the overall problem worse. Thus back to the problem's beginning: abstinence.

  • Posted by: - Jan. 21, 2005 1:01 AM ET USA

    Condoms don't prevent AIDS. It's a myth. They only slow the spread. Given even the laboratory failure rate of condoms, which is significantly less than the actual failure rate, over ten years of weekly intercourse, infection is virtually guaranteed. So even if one were to accept the moral reasoning, which is false, the practical reasoning is also flawed. One might as well expect a hankie to protect one's family from tuberculosis.

  • Posted by: TheJournalist64 - Jan. 20, 2005 7:32 PM ET USA

    Another thought experiment. Suppose you found yourself in a chemical attack without a gas mask. Is it sinful to breathe? No, because you can't stop breathing. It's a reflex too powerful to ignore. So there is no sin in breathing even if it's dangerous or lethal. But to engage in sexual intercourse when it endangers yourself or another is sinful, because that is an impulse that is not necessary to life, and can be resisted.

  • Posted by: - Jan. 20, 2005 6:48 PM ET USA

    I would think he might instead learn abstinence. The case suggested is difficult, even heart breaking but even within marriage the only sane response is abstinence. As for a woman who finds out he husband has AIDS through homosexuality she can tell him to learn to abstain or take it elsewhere as he obviously already has.

  • Posted by: - Jan. 20, 2005 1:07 PM ET USA

    Great idea "Cardinal." When you can decrease your risk of getting HIV by using a condom, why bother eliminating your risk of getting HIV by abstaining? "for although they knew God they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking and their senseless minds were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools" (Rom 1:21-22) Every day I am reminded of these verses over and over.