We take reasonable safety measures throughout our lives. We teach children to look both ways before crossing. Police and soldiers wear Kevlar body armor, surgeons and medical personnel don masks and gowns when necessary, and so on. But some precautions, such as contraception, are excessive, wrong, and betray irrational fears.
The widespread promotion of contraception is among the most destructive developments in our culture over the past half-century. The medical establishment introduced Dr. John Rock’s “pill” in the mid-Twentieth Century. The contraceptive pill uses chemistry to separate love-making from its natural purpose of conceiving babies. Its elder sibling, the condom, uses latex. The pill also fed the feminist liberation movement and accelerated the sexual revolution. The dissent that followed Pope Paul VI’s 1968 reaffirmation of the immorality of contraception shook the Church to its foundations. As a mere chemical concoction, the pill had a disproportionate effect on the culture and the world.
In the 1970s, country music star Loretta Lynn sang its praises in “The Pill”:
You wined me and dined me
When I was your girl.
Promised if I’d be your wife
You’d show me the world.
But all I’ve seen of this old world
Is a bed and a doctor bill
I’m tearin’ down your brooder house
‘Cause now I’ve got the pill.
In an interview years later, she said that many physicians told her that this song did more to promote the availability of birth control in rural areas than all the literature they’d distributed.
Few dare to acknowledge that the pill also released men from their sexual responsibilities, but nobody spoke of Men’s Liberation. The spike in unwed mothers, the recourse to abortion when contraception failed, the rampant sexually transmitted diseases, and collapsing demographics — all are the bitter fruits of the contraceptive mentality. Widespread acceptance of the pill elevated the old-fashioned condom to respectability. And the condom became the cultural symbol of “safe sex,” particularly during the AIDS pandemic in the 1980s.
The pro-contraception lobbies successfully demanded that widespread contraception prevents “unwanted pregnancies,” protects against disease, and saves lives. So promoting condoms in schools, our communities, and overseas became the conventional moral imperative. Indeed, advocates accused those who opposed condoms and other forms of contraception as socially irresponsible. Pro-life and anti-contraception Americans (alas, mostly Catholics) found themselves ostracized and isolated by the contraceptive culture.
Contraceptive technology promotes mutual masturbation as a human right, a sexual entitlement. But realities rooted in immutable rules of human nature are lurking beneath the surface of transitory pleasures and the superficial senses of security and liberation. The contraceptive mentality culturally institutionalized a deep fear of intimate human relations, the destruction of authentic marital love, and the dread of new life. A sexual entitlement mentality rooted in fear – not human freedom — is the underlying motive for contraception.
Fear and the entitlement mentality have become the inseparable hallmarks of a consumer culture that coincided with the sexual revolution. President Johnson’s “Great Society” presumed to solve most of the nation’s social problems by massive Federal spending. A good deal of the health care crisis is grounded in an insatiable appetite for ever-expanding free benefits. (The abuse of expensive emergency room treatment, for example, is well-documented in the insurance world.)
Today, fear and the demand that government (and others) allay those fears have become foundational to our culture. Politicians bribe their constituencies with ever-expanding entitlement programs regardless of available monetary reserves. We even think the earth’s climate depends upon government programs! The massive Federal debt that vastly exceeds the nation’s annual GDP provides statistical proof of the cost of our entitlement mentality. The fear of responsible budget cuts, for the moment, far exceeds the fear of economic collapse.
Within this cultural context, our response to the COVID pandemic was predictable. Cowering in fear, we demanded that the government protect us from every harmful possibility. Government authorities were only too happy to oblige with mandates that shut down the economy, ruined businesses, crippled lives, and promises to continue on and off for many years to come. The 2021 vaccine mandates are getting traction, despite their experimental status and dubious ethical methods in development. The mask mandates have returned to muzzle children who are hardly at risk.
So let’s connect some inconvenient and uncomfortable dots. The COVID protective face mask now has much in common with a condom. Like a condom, the face mask exaggerates the promise of freedom and safety. (Indeed, Dr. Fauci has a long history as a government health official. Before he mandated masks to protect against COVID, in the 1980s he promoted condoms to protect against AIDS.)
Just as those who oppose condoms are deemed irresponsible, those who reject the indiscriminate use of face masks and obsessive “social distancing” are deemed reckless murderers. Face masking in every social situation has become just as axiomatic – and essential – as promoting condoms in schools. But imposing such irrational fears on our children – like teaching them to use condoms in so-called family life programs — is indeed a form of child abuse.
Expecting absolute immunity from the Virus and the obsessive use of face masks (even by military honor guards at Arlington National Cemetery!) betrays an underlying fear of healthy human relations. This expectation of perfect safety describes the contraception mentality – chemical and condom — in a nutshell. It is noteworthy that big families were among the least likely to panic during the pandemic and, today, are the most likely to oppose mask mandates.
Our response to the pandemic crisis reveals the triumph of the unholy and corrosive contraceptive mentality. The iron grip will only break when we reject irrational fears and return to old-fashioned common sense, self-reliance, generosity of spirit, openness to new life, and trustful surrender to God’s providence.
But it may take the bitter medicine of hard times to bring us to our senses. Don’t allow the mask to obscure your view of that massive Federal debt.
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