Members of the media and many progressives are beside themselves about Pope Francis. But raise the subject of the pope’s continued exclusion of women and the church’s opposition to any form of reproductive freedom, and you’re all but told to shut up and wait.
This week, a study says testosterone replacement therapy may increase risk of cardiac issues; the pope asks Catholics across the world to weigh in on contraception, same-sex marriage, and divorce; and San Francisco lawmakers make it very clear that there is to be no sex in massage parlors.
The accidental overdose of a 26-year-old man who accused a former Philadelphia priest of raping him as a child underscores Pennsylvania’s battle over the statute of limitations on child sexual abuse.
While Pope Francis’ comments last week on abortion, contraception, and homosexuality are an important (and long overdue) first step for the Vatican, it’s hardly time for advocates of gender, reproductive, and sexual justice to rest on their laurels.
It is simply unjust that one religion is allowed to act as a state, and use that power to block rights rather than protect them.
Pope Francis said he objects to “laboratories” where out-of-touch people in power develop solutions to problems they don’t understand. Yet it seems those efforts don’t include a willingness to try and understand actual women’s lives.
In a wide-ranging interview, Pope Francis said the Roman Catholic Church spends too much time talking about abortion, contraception, and homosexuality and suggested that these might not be the most important aspects of church doctrine.
Victims and witnesses to reproductive coercion, intimidation, and bullying must try to speak up, seek help, or intervene as the situation requires. When it comes to public and political behavior, calling reproductive coercion what it is the first step to ending it.
The only reasonable explanation for the public stand-off is that Beatriz and other resource-poor women are politically expendable, and that crossing the Catholic Church is seen as worse than being hung out in the press as inhumane.
International human rights bodies are urging the government of El Salvador to act to save Beatriz. Please add your voice.