Letter on the Collaboration on Men and Women


The title seems to be in the right place. Catch the whole content at: http://zenit.org/english/visualizza.phtml?sid=57636

Paragraph 2 begins: “Recent years have seen new approaches to women’s issues. A first tendency is to emphasize strongly conditions of subordination in order to give rise to antagonism: women, in order to be themselves, must make themselves the adversaries of men.”

This is not so recent. Lots of times in history a subjugated class or people have rebelled against injustice. Isn’t that what the Exodus was about?

“Faced with the abuse of power, the answer for women is to seek power.”

Perhaps. Perhaps some women find power and violence freeing to a degree. It will be an empty freedom, but reading on …

“This process leads to opposition between men and women, in which the identity and role of one are emphasized to the disadvantage of the other, leading to harmful confusion regarding the human person, which has its most immediate and lethal effects in the structure of the family.”

Interesting the emphasis here. Women have been degraded in Western society through the centuries. Men have emphasized their own role to the disadvantage of women, sowing confusion, and passing injustice onto the children of the oppressed. Not to say that two wrongs make a right, but the CDF has criminally failed to recognize right out of the chute the essential problems that have led to the rise of feminism in the West.

“A second tendency emerges in the wake of the first. In order to avoid the domination of one sex or the other, their differences tend to be denied, viewed as mere effects of historical and cultural conditioning. In this perspective, physical difference, termed sex, is minimized, while the purely cultural element, termed gender, is emphasized to the maximum and held to be primary. The obscuring of the difference or duality of the sexes has enormous consequences on a variety of levels. This theory of the human person, intended to promote prospects for equality of women through liberation from biological determinism, has in reality inspired ideologies which, for example, call into question the family, in its natural two-parent structure of mother and father, and make homosexuality and heterosexuality virtually equivalent, in a new model of polymorphous sexuality.”

Ah! Feminism is the root of the Gay Rights Movement. This is incisive reporting that would put the NCR to shame.

Seriously, I find the beginning of this letter to be as flawed as the blogosphere arguments I see that set up the worst of the arguments of one’s adversaries for the sole purpose of blasting away. What would have been really interesting? The CDF sitting down with Catholic feminists and coming to a collaborative agreement on what to tell the bishops. If the CDF can’t model collaboration with women, how can it hope to say anything substantive on the issues of men and women in society?

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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