Sex as recreation
UPDATED (3/5/12 8:00 pm): See below!
You may have heard that Rush Limbaugh, used a certain word to describe a young woman at a Catholic college who is demanding they pay for her contraception. She explained that she has frequent sexual encounters and cannot afford to pay for her contraception, because her education is so expensive.
Well, today, Rush apologized for that he “chose the wrong words” in explaining the situation. Here is part of his statement. My comments in red, highlights in bold.
I think it is absolutely absurd that during these very serious political times, we are discussing personal sexual recreational activities [That is the problem with out society, sexual relations has been separated from marriage. It is now a form of recreation! Are we becoming a society that will one day go through a drive through for sexual favors – “I’ll have one of these and one of those, but I don’t want any commitment!” It seems we are heading that way!] before members of Congress. I personally do not agree that American citizens should pay for these social activities. What happened to personal responsibility and accountability? [Right on Rush! Where is personal responsibility? It’s out the window, remember, everything is relative!] Where do we draw the line? If this is accepted as the norm, what will follow? Will we be debating if taxpayers should pay for new sneakers for all students that are interested in running to keep fit? [Yes, while your at it, I need a new MacBook Pro, come on Obama, where is my MacBook Pro] In my monologue, I posited that it is not our business whatsoever to know what is going on in anyone’s bedroom nor do I think it is a topic that should reach a Presidential level.
This whole situation is so sick. Imagine a young woman, studying in a Catholic University that is demanding free contraceptives because she is having so much sex. Something is wrong with the Catholic University. They are NOT fulfilling their mission as a Catholic institution of learning.
You can read the whole statement here.
You will notice below that I received some feedback from Margo, to my post on Rush Limaugh’s apology. Here is my response to Margo:
In response to Margo, I am not “misrepresenting” Sandra Fluke’s testimony. I was only giving Rush Limbaugh’s story to make a point. I did not and have no intention of judging Fluke, let the facts speak for themselves.
At the same time, I need to point out some new information that has since come up. This is not a first for Sandra Fluke. Ms. Fluke is not only pushing for birth control. Here is part of an article from The College Politico.
Again, my comments in RED and highlights in BOLD
Sandra Fluke is being sold by the left [The Left always has a way of using people and than throwing them away] as something she’s not. Namely a random co-ed from Georgetown law who found herself mixed up in the latest front of the culture war who was simply looking to make sure needy women had access to birth control. That, of course, is not the case.
As many have already uncovered Sandra Fluke she is, in reality, a 30 year old long time liberal activist who enrolled at Georgetown with the express purpose of fighting for the school to pay for students’ birth control. She has been pushing for mandated coverage of contraceptives at Georgetown for at least three years according to the Washington Post.
However, as I discovered today, birth control is not all that Ms. Fluke believes private health insurance must cover. She also, apparently, believes that it is discrimination deserving of legal action if “gender reassignment” surgeries are not covered by employer provided health insurance. [I would like to know who is paying for her education! Who is slipping money into that private bank account? “What is done in the dark, will be proclaimed from the rooftops!”] She makes these views clear in an article she co-edited with Karen Hu in the Georgetown Journal of Gender and the Law.
The title of the article, which can be purchased in full here, is Employment Discrimination Against LGBTQ Persons and was published in the Journal’s 2011 Annual Review. [So this IS NOT a first!] I have posted a transcript of the section I will be quoting from here. In a subsection of the article entitled “Employment Discrimination in Provision of Employment Benefits” starting on page 635 of the review Sandra Fluke and her co-editor describe two forms of discrimination in benefits they believe LGBTQ individuals face in the work place:
- Discrimination typically takes two forms: first, direct discrimination limiting access to benefits specifically needed by LGBTQ persons, and secondly, the unavailability of family-related benefits to LGBTQ families.
Their “prime example” of the first form of discrimination? Not covering sex change operations:
- A prime example of direct discrimination is denying insurance coverage for medical needs of transgender persons physically transitioning to the other gender.
So, I ask this question: Is Ms. Fluke the innocent young college student who needs contraception for a true medical issue, or is she a puppet in the hands of the liberal democratic establishment? Or, is she just another liberal, trying to shove her point of view down the Catholic conscience throat?
You can see the whole article on The College Politico here.
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Dear Fr. Jay,
I am saddened to read your misrepresentation of Sandra Fluke’s testimony. [See my update and you decide if I misrepresented Sandra Fluke!] I am even more disappointed to find that you accepted Rush Limbaugh’s version of the story rather than research the facts on your own.
Sandra Fluke’s testimony may be found here: http://abcnews.go.com/images/Politics/statement-Congress-letterhead-2nd%20hearing.pdf. As you can see, she makes absolutely no reference to her own personal use of contraception. For Mr. Limbaugh to extrapolate from her testimony that she is having many sexual encounters and to call her a foul name because of it is deplorable.
Mr. Limbaugh also seems to misunderstand how hormonal contraception works, and you have not corrected this misunderstanding. Hormonal birth control is taken in the form of one pill every day. Mr. Limbaugh seems to believe that the number of pills taken is related to the number of sexual encounters one has. This is factually inaccurate. Someone who has multiple partners, someone in a monogamous relationship, someone who is celibate and takes hormonal birth control for medical reasons – every one of them takes the same number of pills and incurs the same expense paying for those pills.
The subject of medical reasons for taking hormonal contraceptive pills strikes very close to home for me, as it clearly does for Sandra Fluke. She spoke at some length about her friend who suffered the loss of an ovary due to her inability to afford hormonal contraceptives. Like the woman Ms. Fluke spoke of, I too have been awakened in the middle of the night by the excruciating pain of a ruptured ovarian cyst. This pain is orders of magnitude greater than any other pain I have ever experienced. These cysts threaten my future fertility and a large cyst that twists the ovary (a relatively common complication) is a life-threatening surgical emergency and nearly always results in loss of that ovary. Hormonal birth control effectively treats this condition by reversibly ceasing ovarian function. I am certainly considering this as a treatment option to preserve fertility and reduce my risk of emergency surgery. Every person deserves access to medical care, and Catholic teaching accepts this use of hormonal birth control through the principle of double effect.
Fr. Jay, I agree completely that recreational sex is a huge societal problem. But Sandra Fluke’s testimony had absolutely nothing to do with recreational sex, at least not before Mr. Limbaugh decided that’s what it was about. I sincerely hope that in the future you will not allow Rush Limbaugh to be your arbiter of facts. Here your doing so has further dragged a young woman’s name through the mud. You may not agree with what she had to say in her testimony, but it is still incumbent upon you to not misrepresent what she had to say. It is even more of an ethical imperative that you not publish inferences about her lifestyle that are scandalous and may be completely false.
Thank you for reading this.
The idea that this whole debacle centers on the alleged fact that the Church is against women’s health is mired in sheer ignorance, and it’s difficult to take it seriously.
However, the lack of the ability to take the issue seriously is the entrance point for the sort of arguments being made here in the comments.
One can pretend that the Church lives in ignorance, and bandy about as they may. But the true sadness is, that as the Church uses intelligence and wisdom to gauge her positions, those who denigrate her most often use intelligence and motive.
Somewhat sad, yet Christ looms large in our lives, and all is good.
Padre, I gotta’ call your hand on this one. You wholly mischaracterize Miss Fluke’s testimony entirely. To describe such as gross would be kind. Bluntly, she absolutely did NOT say “that she has frequent sexual encounters.” The official record of her testimony is posted on Google Docs here: http://j.mp/GK9nqY
The exclusive reference Miss Fluke made to herself was to identify herself as a law student. Further, her address was recitation of abuses by insurance firms and other non-qualified individuals (that is, those who do NOT have a professional healthcare license) when they questioned the accepted professional medical recommendation to women who would have benefited from the non-contraceptive use of female hormones, colloquially – and improperly – termed as “birth control.”
Part of the abuses of such firms has been to second guess the medical intent of the licensed healthcare professional whom prescribed those medications to treat a genuine health problem. In essence, they are practicing medicine without a license. Fertility is NOT a health problem. Polycystic ovarian syndrome, however, is, and the recommended modality of treatment for that disease is with female hormones, the ones often and typically used as contraceptive.
I am in full agreement with the Church’s teaching concerning use of artificial means of contraception not only as a faithful Catholic, but as a licensed healthcare professional, as well, for there are numerous highly-documented serious health risks associated with such contraceptive practice.
Miss Fluke concluded her testimony with these words: “Many of the women whose stories I’ve shared are Catholic women, so ours is not a war against the church. It is a struggle for access to the healthcare we need. The President of the Association of Jesuit Colleges has shared that Jesuit colleges and universities appreciate the modification to the rule announced last week. Religious concerns are addressed and women get the healthcare they need. That is something we can all agree on.”
She may say that she is not at war with the Church, but her background say otherwise. See this report on LifeNews. And this on Fox News.
It appears that she had an agenda long before speaking to Congress. She was used by the Obama administration.
Hello Father, with all due respect, I find it very disturbing that someone who is supposed to show professionalism like Mr. Limbaugh expresses himself in such low manner. I also regret your agreement with Mr. Limbaugh as well as your judgment against Miss Fluke. We all make mistakes, we all don’t agree with each other, but the fact is we need to respect everyone’s points of view. I don’t really have much to say about this topic, but all three of you will stay in my prayers for a common agreement that will please the Lord.
Father Finelli, one more thing! I think you are awesome and I enjoy your talks and opinions! I am a big fan!
May God bless you abundantly!
Not that I agree with everything in Limbaugh’s opinion. My thought is that she is being used by Obama and his minions. Yet, at the same time, we are all free to do what is right and avoid what is wrong.