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Vatican Backtracks

Posted by Condomologist on March 19, 2009

Update to previous story: The Pope’s remarks were altered amidst worldwide backlash to his comments. It’s a bit half-assed, in that his quote was changed to reflect only that condoms “risked” aggravating the problem [of HIV/AIDS].” And to clarify my earlier post, it turns out all interviews with the Pope are conducted in Italian, so as the piece notes, there are some translation issues that come up. As for reaction to this story — and further proof that there are many sensible Catholics out there — the following from this story sums it up best:

Jon O’Brien, president of the US-based Catholics for Choice, welcomed the change as an admission that the Pope was not infallible on the issue and was willing to acknowledge his mistakes. “The Pope has now admitted that he is unsure as to whether condoms will help alleviate the spread of HIV,” he said. “Where there is doubt there is freedom and Catholics can now make up their own minds as to whether they can use them or not. Indeed, the vast majority of Catholics have already made this call and use condoms to protect themselves and their partners against sexually transmitted infections, including HIV.

“We call on the Pope to revisit the teachings on condoms with a view to lifting the ban at the earliest possible moment. In his review, we want him to include experts who are unequivocal that condoms do in fact help prevent the spread of HIV.”

Mr O’Brien added: “It took the church hierarchy 359 years to stop continuing the line taken by their predecessors on Galileo. We hope that this error does not take so long to change.”


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