I’m a bit late on this. I know. Have been trying to blog a bit in advance, catching up on real content I’ve wanted to talk about, while spreading it out on the blog over the two weeks mid-December wherein I can’t really devote my attention appropriately — specifically, the week immediately before, and the week of, my vacation. Plus, it kept getting bumped down the queue. If all goes according to plan, I expect to also post a liveblogging of 2012: Doomsday, which Stephanie Zvan and I plan on subjecting ourselves to. With or without copious amounts of alcohol.
That said, here. Have a rant.
For the past several decades, the Catholic Church has been roundly rebuffed for teaching to the detriment of millions of Catholic adherents in Africa and elsewhere that condoms do not work, increase the likelihood of contracting HIV, and are an outright mortal sin if they happen to prevent a potential pregnancy. Pope Ratzinger has finally declared, albeit in a sidelong manner, that condom use that prevents someone from getting AIDS is not TOTALLY morally wrong, even if it does prevent you from accidentally popping out an HIV-ridden child whose short existence would count as a notch on the Big Catholic Soul Scoreboard. From the AP:
Using a condom is a lesser evil than transmitting HIV to a sexual partner — even if that means a woman averts a possible pregnancy, the Vatican said Tuesday, signaling a seismic shift in papal teaching as it explained Pope Benedict XVI’s comments.
The change came on a day when U.N. AIDS officials announced that the number of new HIV cases has fallen significantly — thanks to condom use — and a U.S. medical journal published a study showing that a daily pill could help prevent spread of the virus among gay men.
“I say hurrah for Pope Benedict,” exclaimed Linda-Gail Bekker, chief executive of South Africa’s Desmond Tutu HIV Foundation..
And everyone seems to be congratulating the fucker for overturning this onerous and disgusting policy, as though it was a courageous thing for him to do, even though a little over a year ago he was preaching the same old shit IN AFRICA. HIMSELF.
I’ll congratulate him for something else, personally. I’ll congratulate him for proving that papal infallibility is as big a myth as the idea that there’s a sky daddy that created an entire universe just for us and who cares — who is genuinely concerned, to the tune of your immortal soul — about whether you slice off your foreskin or wear a rubber.
See, people have this big idea that the Pope is an emissary of The Big G, and that his words are channeled through this emissary infallibly and unchangingly. That image probably comes from the fact that the Vatican basically spouts the same old shit they always have, covering up where their policies and their authority figures have demonstrably damaged human lives, in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary. However, they only persist in doing so right up until the public outcry is so overwhelming and so undeniable that they begin to lose adherents over their bullheadedness on the matter. Then they reverse course, and pretend like they’re still and have always been correctly interpreting the will of God.
I have a special hatred for Catholicism, steeped as it is in inhumane and ridiculous dogma, and doing as much damage to human rights and human lives as it has in the name of humble piety. To err is human, but to really screw this world up, you need a religion. That way you can turn your solitary erring, into a human-powered Beowulf cluster-fuck.