To the Editor,
Much has been made over the Obama administration’s rule that would require health insurance plans – including those offered by Roman Catholic institutions – to provide free birth control to female employees. The hue and cry has accused the president of an unconscionable affront to religious freedom and as an enemy of morality. A couple questions arise.
Since when did the US Conference of Catholic Bishops become the arbiters of conscience and morality? Surely not in the wake of the scandals that have rocked the church over the last decade, and with which Catholic bishops are criminally implicated.
And while contraception as a factor in women’s health has been duly reported, why is there no discussion, from either the left or the right, about birth control as a factor in the health of the planet? Is it really so unseemly to mention that the earth is groaning under the weight of 7 billion human beings?
To quote Boulder’s inestimable Al Bartlett: “Can you think of any problem, in any area of human endeavor, on any scale, whose long-term solution is in any demonstrable way aided, assisted, or advanced by further increases in population?”
As we move forward into the 21st Century, perhaps it is time we develop some ethical measures and standards of morality that account for the welfare of planet earth – the very ground from which all our freedoms arise.