But Doesn't That Fall Under "Special Protections For Gays?"
The silliness of the "abstinence only" group got sillier when Pope Benedict XVI declared that it was OK for male prostitutes to wear condoms since, after all, they don't procreate.
AP) Pope Benedict XVI says in a new book that the use of condoms can be justified in some cases, such as for male prostitutes seeking to prevent the spread of HIV.
Benedict said that condoms are not a moral solution to stopping AIDS. But he said in some cases, such as for male prostitutes, their use could represent a first step in assuming moral responsibility "in the intention of reducing the risk of infection."
Of course, some Catholic adherents to the Vatican, praised the pope's statement:
"We welcome the pope's change of opinion because it is meant to save life and to protect people. We see here an enlightened pope putting his concern over human life as a priority first."
Then again, thinking hard:
"There may be extreme, extreme exemptions for the church to allow its use, I'm thinking hard, but I can't think of any right now."
Exemptions, exemptions. Rapists? Nah. Pedophiles? Nah. The speculation as to exceptions besides male sex workers boggles the mind.
So whither America's Christian Right? Should they condemn the pope because he acknowledged hustlers? Is he just trying to protect priests? Is he putting a (very small) halt to God's judgment? Or should they applaud him for helping them to point out gay porn stars? ("Pssst! That cute guy over there just bought some condoms - I wonder what movie he's in!"). Whatever their stance, they'll still look as perplexed as the rest of us: condoms for hustlers/porn stars, but not for anyone else?
This looks to be a lame attempt to counteract Benedict's 2009 statement that condoms were actually part of the problem of the AIDS epidemic. And it's one that will be twisted by the Christian Right (read: Tony Perkins, et al) as promoting homosexual concupiscence: "since gays can't procreate, let's just give them protection against STDs, then they can have as much sex as they want to."
And another stance: this earth-shaking announcement flies in the face of women: women need protection too, but Benedict doesn't seem to care. He has taken a very chauvinistic attitude by allowing only a small male segment of the population the right to protection. One hopes he gets justifiably pilloried by women's groups for this latest effort to look sympathetic to the world's ills.
All people have the right to protection from illness, so the placement of that right on one minuscule segment of the world's population smacks as disingenuous at best. It is a tiny throwaway plastic trinket that only further distances Benedict from the people of the real world. And anyone who thinks this is a portent of further pronouncements on birth control is foolish.
So where is Benedict going with this (assuming he's moving in any direction at all)? It smacks of chauvinism, stigmatization, or benign contempt: the ruminations of a man who shielded pedophile priests, the cast-off, arbitrary pronouncements of a clerical actor who can think of nothing to say about human sexuality.
In the end, who cares?