On Big Families and Happy, Educated Women, by John GarveyNovember 25, 2019
The Idiosyncratic Pope Francis, by Eduardo J. EcheverriaNovember 25, 2019
By Christopher Manion, The Wanderer, November 23, 2019
Anyone who’s been on the front lines in the battle for life knows how often the laity have had to go it alone. It’s not that America’s bishops aren’t interested, it’s just that they’ve had more pressing priorities for the past fifty years. And business consultants will tell you that, if you haven’t finished priority number one, it’s likely that you’ll never get around to priority number two.
Take contraception. In the 1960s, long before Humanae Vitae, the bishops’ conference decided not to oppose federal taxpayer support for programs that provided contraception and sterilization. Of course, it’s quite possible that many prelates didn’t really object to contraception at all. But the fact is clear: They were up against powerful secular elites. With weak support and considerable opposition within the conference, they apparently decided the fight simply wasn’t worth the effort.
Those secular elites were as powerful then as they are today. In fact, fifty years ago many national leaders were still intoxicated by the Wilsonian eugenics craze that had thrived not only in Nazi Germany, but in Planned Parenthood and the Ku Klux Klan. After World War II, Catholic historian Donald Critchlow reports, major foundations, corporations, and government figures in both parties championed population control.
Their argument went like this: Since wars were fought by growing populations demanding “Lebensraum,” reducing the number of people would deter the desire for expansion, and thus make future wars unnecessary. ….