A (brief) case for contraception
John Galeziewski | Thursday, February 2, 2012
There has recently been a lot of discussion about contraception and the Catholic Church’s teachings. I wish to continue the discussion about the use of contraception started in “Contraception and dignity” by Mr. Damian, Mr. Lynch, and Ms. Stempky.
Firstly, the claim that sex with contraception somehow makes the intimacy less genuine, less fulfilling and less meaningful, is debatable. Sex with contraception can allow the partners to have a more intimate and meaningful experience. What if a married couple is not currently in a position to take up the responsibilities of raising a child? They would be free to take their intimacy to its deepest levels without worrying about an unintended pregnancy. If you are using Natural Family Planning to avoid an unintended pregnancy, how is that any different than using a contraceptive, so long as the couple is not going to terminate an unintended pregnancy? Using contraceptives allows people to focus on the intimacy of a moment.
Secondly, I strongly disagree with the claim that contraception destroys a woman’s dignity. Contraceptives empower women and give them the ability to make a choice in her creative gifts. Without female contraceptives, a man has all the control (even if God plays a part in the creation of a child, the sperm still has to fertilize an egg) in the creation of a child. Contraceptives give women the ability to pursue careers and develop other natural talents that would be hindered by having to raise a large family.
Finally, all people make poor decisions, or put themselves in positions of making poor decisions. On a college campus, students who drink heavily are more likely to make poor decisions that they might not have made had they been sober. Contraception is one tool that helps prevent a poor decision, such as hooking up, from becoming a life-altering event. Does this mean that contraception encourages promiscuity? Maybe. But isn’t it better to prevent an unintended pregnancy than to put two students in the difficult position of raising a child that they aren’t ready to have?