Are the US Catholic Bishops in Agreement with Representative Todd Atkins on Rape???

 Do the US Catholic Bishops agree with Representative Todd Atkins R-MO remarkes made during a radio interview that if a “legitimate rape” occurs, “the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.” This is what nonsense the Catholic Bishops are siding with like it or not.

This is a teaching moment for not only Cardinal Dolan current president of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), but also the whole USCCB to explain why it opposes abortion in cases of rape, what medical treatment in such cases is ethically acceptable, and the U.S. bishops’ reasons for supporting legislation that bars federal funding of abortion but exempts victims of rape. In many ways the USCCB have much in common with Vice President Paul Ryan (R) and Representative Todd Atkins who both oppose the use of abortion to save a women’s life the only difference is style of presentation.

The Rainbow Sash Movement challenges both Adkins and Ryan who are now trying to distance themselves from this situation in an attempt to contradict their own records. Ryan had co-sponsored a bill introduced last year by Rep. Chris Smith, R-N.J., that sought to limit exemptions to the Hyde Amendment, which bars federal funding of abortion. Our Catholic Bishops supported the Human Person Amendment that was also supported by Adkins and Ryan.

The Catechism teaches, “Human life must be respected and protected absolutely from the moment of conception. From the first moment of his existence, a human being must be recognized as having the rights of a person — among which is the inviolable right of every innocent being to life (2270). We don’t understand why the US Bishops are not now loudly proclaiming this backward view, or could it be because they recognize now that it is a backward view.

Janet Smith, a professor of moral theology at Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit echos Rep Adkins and the USCCB on this matter when she says “Compassionate young people who are understandably horrified by the act of rape are very confused about the Church’s teaching on this,” agreed Smith, and “partisans also use this confusion to keep abortion legal.” This is a sad commentary about how partisan politics can influence Catholic Moral Theology.

Why are the USCCB not adding their voices to this Adkins issue could it be because they agree with it? 

Sue Murphy
Rainbow Sash Movement

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