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Pope Denounces Some Biotech as Affront to 'Human Dignity'

Zonk posted more than 6 years ago | from the weighing-in dept.

Biotech 1158

eldavojohn writes "Today in a speech the pope denounced human cloning, embryonic stem cell research and artificial insemination, citing them as a violation of 'human dignity.' That said, the pope did 'appreciate and encourage' research on stem cells from non-embryonic cells in the human body. The pope encouraged the Vatican to be a leading voice in the philosophy and discussion of bioethics. 'Church teaching certainly cannot and must not weigh in on every novelty of science, but it has the task to reiterate the great values which are on the line and to propose to faithful and all men of good will ethical-moral principles and direction for new, important questions,' Benedict said."

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1158 comments

On behalf of all geek catholics.. (1)

moogied (1175879) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250564)

I would like to extend our most honest "Damnit!" to the rest of the geek world.. this is gonna cause some serious headaches for me at church.

As a former Catholic and current geek, (4, Funny)

krog (25663) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250638)

I gotta say: if this is the first, or second, or tenth issue that "is gonna cause some serious headaches for you at church", you aren't paying very close attention.

Re:As a former Catholic and current geek, (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22250922)

"I have a headache" is what I tell my priest when he wants to spend some quality alter time with me.

Re:On behalf of all geek catholics.. (4, Insightful)

KublaiKhan (522918) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250650)

Well, it's not as if he had much of a choice of what to say, to maintain consistency with church doctrine. If he encouraged it, there would come some rather unpleasant questions as to what, exactly, would require baptism; if a cloned person has a cloned soul; whether you receive some of the soul of the fetus that gave the stem cells when, for whatever reason, you use said stem cells--all a bunch of nasty theological problems.

Frankly, is there anything else he -could- have said?

How about silence? (1)

A nonymous Coward (7548) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250796)

Better to keep quiet and be thought inconsistent than open your mouth and prove it.

Re:How about silence? (2, Insightful)

KublaiKhan (522918) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250830)

Not an option. He's the pope. He has to say something, and he has to remain consistent with earlier doctrine--unless he decides to do something other than what he's been doing his entire papacy and take a bold new stance.

John Paul II might have considered it, but Benedict is extremely conservative and is living up to the 'placeholder' assessment that most people had of him at the time of his election.

Re:How about silence? (4, Interesting)

Altus (1034) | more than 6 years ago | (#22251008)


we have had artificial insemination for a long time now. I don't recall any other popes calling it an affront to human dignity. Are test tube babies not allowed to be baptized because fertilization occurred outside the body? what about the natural children of test tube babies? Are they tainted as well?

Re:How about silence? (4, Insightful)

Entropius (188861) | more than 6 years ago | (#22251022)

he has to remain consistent with earlier doctrine

When given a choice between remaining consistent with earlier doctrine and remaining consistent with reality, why should we choose the former?

Re:On behalf of all geek catholics.. (2, Informative)

Lady Jazzica (689768) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250934)

No, that's not the problem. Cloned people have souls - look at twins, for instance.

Re:On behalf of all geek catholics.. (5, Insightful)

spun (1352) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250656)

Catholics who can't conceive are gonna be pissed too. Though I thought nowadays it was acceptable to simply ignore the pope when he makes an ass out of himself.

Re:On behalf of all geek catholics.. (0, Flamebait)

Fx.Dr (915071) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250752)

Though I thought nowadays it was acceptable to simply ignore the pope when he makes an ass out of himself.

I kinda figured he was just lashing out for attention.

Re:On behalf of all geek catholics.. (2, Interesting)

countSudoku() (1047544) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250938)

Good point. You never hear the people who go ahead with an artificially induced pregnancy thanking medical science when they plop out a litter of 6 kids, just their wacky, pointless, god creature. Their god didn't want them to have babies in the first place, according to them, and the selfish pricks did it anyway, no thanks to the science that got them there. Give credit where credit is due.

Re:On behalf of all geek catholics.. (3, Insightful)

ArAgost (853804) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250974)

I think that catholics who can't conceive were already quite pissed off by the fact that they couldn't conceive.

Re:On behalf of all geek catholics.. (2, Insightful)

Abreu (173023) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250758)

Well, some geek protestants had to change churches when the leadership all went creationist-crazy... I know I had to :(

Well, at least you have 2000 years of tradition (1)

wsanders (114993) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250946)

I have to hand it to the Catholic Church, dealing with dissenters has a 2000 year old tradition. It's not like management is pulling new rules out of their a**es or anything. I admire that, actually; they are pretty good at arguing their case, just browse the Vatican web site.

Re:On behalf of all geek catholics.. (3, Insightful)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250996)

I'm not too sure how an organization that spent decades hiding pedophiles has any business lecturing anyone on human dignity.

The only thing, apparently, more infinite than God is the human capacity for intense hypocrisy.

Big deal (0, Flamebait)

grub (11606) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250568)


Who gives two shits what a kook who believes in invisible super-beings things? The man is irrational and would gladly have us living back in the dark ages.

Re:Big deal (2, Insightful)

BlueParrot (965239) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250640)

Who gives two shits what a kook who believes in invisible super-beings things?


Far too many registered voters and politicians.

Re:Big deal (1, Insightful)

RazzleFrog (537054) | more than 6 years ago | (#22251024)

It isn't the Roman Catholics you should fear. It is the other Christians who are running the country (meaning the US) right now.

Re:Big deal (1, Interesting)

CRCulver (715279) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250680)

Who gives two shits what a kook who believes in invisible super-beings things[sic]?

The majority of the human race who are not atheist? The vocal atheists here on Slashdot should realize that everything is not them.

The man is irrational and would gladly have us living back in the dark ages.

The current pope has a long career in systematic theology. A man who has spent so much time in the tradition of inquiry is not the type who sends people back to "dark ages".

Re:Big deal (1)

Entropius (188861) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250756)

Who gives two shits what a kook who believes in invisible super-beings things[sic]?

The majority of the human race who are not atheist?


So the majority of people who don't have legs use wheelchairs?

Re:Big deal (4, Insightful)

CRCulver (715279) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250808)

So the majority of people who don't have legs use wheelchairs?

Though people in religious traditions might disagree with the pope, they nonetheless would express some opinion about his pronouncements, as opposed to Slashdot atheists, who think he says nothing of import for or against their own metaphysical views (or lack thereof).

Re:Big deal (1, Insightful)

fyngyrz (762201) | more than 6 years ago | (#22251016)

Close, anyway. First thing I thought when I saw the headline "Pope denounces some biotech as affront to human dignity" was "Most religion is an affront to human dignity, Catholicism right at the head of the pack."

I don't feel that it is my place to tell them what to believe, but that doesn't make me think they're anything but a bunch of whacked-out loonies, driven by insecurity, fear and an inability to deal with the idea that some questions may not have answers, and others we may never know the answers to.

Religion is the crack-pipe of the masses. Makes some of them hyper, drives others to euphoria, costs them much time, treasure and effort, all the while debilitating their faculties of reason.

Re:Big deal (1)

A nonymous Coward (7548) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250832)

The current pope also said Galileo got a fair trial. I'd say his long career is in believing nonsense, whether consistent or not, which would happily return to the dark ages of yee olde fashioned Big Brother in the pointed hat or brown robe.

Re:Big deal (1)

grub (11606) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250838)


The vocal atheists here on Slashdot should realize that everything is not them.

I'm well aware, it's a cause of sadness to see so much of the world revolving their lives around fairy tales. :)

The current pope has a long career in systematic theology. A man who has spent so much time in the tradition of inquiry is not the type who sends people back to "dark ages".

The Pope realizes that today science marches on with or without the blessings of the guy-in-the-funny-hat. His deluded rantings really don't matter in the rational world.

Re:Big deal (1)

d34thm0nk3y (653414) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250958)

Who gives two shits what a kook who believes in invisible super-beings things[sic]?
The majority of the human race who are not atheist? The vocal atheists here on Slashdot should realize that everything is not them.


So the majority of religious people are Catholic? Hardly. [adherents.com]

Re:Big deal (1)

krog (25663) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250698)

This guy isn't even relevant to most Catholics. He's basically an interim caretaker, following an important leader who brought much change to an institution which is not ready for any more any time soon.

Affront to Human Dignity? (1, Interesting)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250714)

This from a man who upholds the Inquisition's judgment upon Galileo, and was a member of the Hitler Jugend.

Re:Affront to Human Dignity? (5, Informative)

krog (25663) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250844)

In his defense, basically everyone was in Hitler Youth. It was the Boy Scouts for Good Germans. Most children didn't have a whole lot of choice regarding their participation.

Re:Affront to Human Dignity? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22250910)

As a Cardinal, he was also the one in charge of hiding away all the pedophile priests across the world. He would relocate them, usually into Rome, so they didn't face charges; and then he'd cover it up at the source as well.

The guy is an evil, evil douchebag.

Re:Big deal (1)

zappepcs (820751) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250846)

Church teaching certainly cannot and must not weigh in on every novelty of science, but it has the task to reiterate the great values which are on the line and to propose to faithful and all men of good will ethical-moral principles and direction for new, important questions,' Benedict said."
Never mind his invisible super being, I'm one of those 'all men of good will' he is talking about, and personally, I'd like him to STFU already about what is right for the rest of us. If he want's to address only Catholics, that's find and dandy, but don't imply that I'm not a man of good will, for that is surely the quickest way to find the end of my good will.

The fact that his speech suggests that only evil-doers would have anything to do with genetics research that is not acceptable to an old man with special ties to an invisible friend, only makes him sound insane, intolerant, afraid, or all three.

Re:Big deal (1)

$RANDOMLUSER (804576) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250888)

Benedict brushed off those who criticize the church "as if it were an obstacle to science and to humanity's true progress"
No, I don't say that of "the (Roman Catholic) church", I say that about religion.

Srsly you guys... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22250574)

...I think the Pope has tourettes.

Last I looked the Pope was an affront (0, Flamebait)

trolltalk.com (1108067) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250580)

A former nazi party member shouldn't be throwing stones.

Mod parent up! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22250932)

Who cares if those who derive morality from a book that advocates stoning homosexuals to death are offended by the comparison? Many of us find Christianity offensive!

Interesting acusation (1)

orclevegam (940336) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250606)

I wonder how he comes around to call cloning an 'affront to human dignity'. Exactly who's dignity is being affronted, the clones?

Re:Interesting acusation (3, Insightful)

Lady Jazzica (689768) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250884)

I think his point is that human beings shouldn't be made in labs, as if they were bacteria cultures or something like that.

LISTEN TO THE POPE!! (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22250610)

Please listen to what the Pope is saying!!! I'm Catholic and I strongly believe the Pope is right! He's always right! Humans shouldn't play God. Please listen to the Pope and just stop what you're doing!! :(

+5 Funny (1)

SanityInAnarchy (655584) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250772)

I wonder how you reconcile this:

I'm Catholic and I strongly believe the Pope is right! He's always right!

With this:

Humans shouldn't play God.

Whether you meant it or not, that's great satire, very Colbert-esque. May you be modded +5 Funny.

STFU (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22250622)

STFU pope. If I want any shit out of you, I'll squeeze your fancy hat.

AC Denounces Pope as Irrelivent to Science (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22250628)

Maybe tommorow the crazy cat lady would like to give us some advice about why ...I don't know.

All I know is I'm not asking teh Pope anything about science.

There are thousands of good people pushing the limits of biotech to improve our lives. I don't care what someone who had nothing to do with the medical advances that have already improved our lives has to say about it.

Ethics? (5, Funny)

Plazmid (1132467) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250642)

Ethics? We don't need no steenkin' ethics!

Re:Ethics? (2, Insightful)

orclevegam (940336) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250696)

Ethics? We don't need no steenkin' ethics!
Sure we do, I just don't think that the pope is in a position to judge the ethics of science. That's a job for the scientists that actually understand what they're doing.

Re:Ethics? (4, Insightful)

PJ1216 (1063738) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250966)

ehhh, that position is arguable. That's like saying we should leave it up to a bunch of cannibals to decide if we should be allowed to eat humans in our society. Or leaving it up to the IRA to decide whether more restrictions should be imposed on the sale of shotguns in the US. There's a huge bias involved in saying, "hey, let the scientists decide if we should allow science to progress unhindered or not." Science inherently comes with no ethics. Its a dangerous deal to say let science take care of it. I know my analogies are obviously extreme, but they focus on the point i'm trying to make. You're giving a very important decision to a very biased group. I'm not saying the church is the right one, but I know they at least consider that which isn't scientific (dignity for one is not a scientific principle).

Christianity is an affront to human dignity. (0, Flamebait)

Lilith's Heart-shape (1224784) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250660)

Considering that the Pope is the head of one sect of a religion that preaches that humankind is inherently sinful and must seek forgiveness for being human through faith in Jesus Christ, I refuse to grant him any credence when he presumes to speak of "human dignity". Get rid of the doctrine of original sin [wikipedia.org], and then we can talk.

Re:Religion is an affront to human dignity. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22250928)

No need to be a bigot, there is plenty of blame for violence, famine, disease, and death to go around between all the religions in the world.

Oh, the hypocrisy! (1)

Rude Turnip (49495) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250678)

Meanwhile, who's the one building a gigantic clone army and giving Darth Vader life-sustaining bionic enhancements?

Sorry, wrong fairytale!

Because it's far more noble and dignified... (1)

The Damned Yankee (829738) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250684)

... to let somebody suffer with Parkinson's Disease or Alzheimer's. Guys like His Holiness are why I left the church.

Here we go again. (1, Interesting)

TheMeuge (645043) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250692)

I have to admit, while the Church's stance on human cloning and embryonic stem cell research is not surprising (albeit as ridiculous as ever), but I wonder how did artificial insemination make its way to the hate list? I mean, isn't it just following God's degree to "be fruitful and multiply"? Sometimes I think the Church just compiles the list of the most important scientific fields that are likely to provide us with answers about the Universe, and flat-out denies them... for the sake of good old times.

But then I realized that by agreeing to artificial insemination, they agree to extra embryos being created, which would then be used for stem cell research (or they'd have to willingly destroy them). Wow, to go against reason AND God's decree, they must really hate embryonic stem cell a lot... or perhaps they just want to rake in some more donation from crazy people who want to blame ESC for the moral degeneration of our society.

Non-Embryonic Stem Cells? (1)

m0rph3us0 (549631) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250694)

Why is an embryonic stem cell "life"?
And a non-embryonic stem cell not "life"?

If we found the tech to create "embryonic" stem cells from non-embryonic stem cells would it then be OK to test on them?

A short recap of Reality, since you are elsewhere (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22250790)

Embryonic stem cells are extracted, destructively, from a viable human embryo. After extraction, the embryo is no longer viable, and dies. This is what pisses Sweet Baby Jesus off.

Re:Non-Embryonic Stem Cells? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22250852)

It's not a matter of the cell being "life". It's a matter of whether the stem cell comes from an embryo that you had to destroy to get the cell. If you create it, it is by definition "non-embryonic".

Flipping the Statement Around... (2, Interesting)

jellie (949898) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250716)

"Church teaching certainly cannot and must not weigh in on every novelty of science, but it has the task to reiterate the great values which are on the line and to propose to faithful and all men of good will ethical-moral principles and direction for new, important questions."
"Science certainly cannot and must not weigh in on every novelty of church teaching, but it has the task to reiterate the great values which are on the line and to propose to reasonable and all men of good will rational-logical principles and direction for new, important questions."

That's nothing (1)

iamacat (583406) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250722)

The man is also opposed to free access to condoms in AIDS-striken nations of Africa. Fine, preach all you want about abstinence and fidelity. But, many men will not listen (why should they, they are not even Christians) and visit prostitutes. Later they go home, have sex with their wives (and sometimes daughters) and have 5 infected children who will die before getting a chance to even consider their own spiritual believes.

Good job slaughtering 5 innocents to get to one sinner. I am tentatively considering myself to be a Christian, but this man should be indicted as a mass murderer comparable in scope to war criminals.

Iran has a different attitude (1)

dk90406 (797452) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250726)

The Iranian regime takes the opposite stand. They encourage stem cell research, and Iran is quite advanced in the field.
The main difference is that the Catholic church says that the soul is infused upon conception, while the muslims mainly believe that it is at birth the the soul arrives.

Re:Iran has a different attitude (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22250880)

+1 Informative.

I can't be the only one... (0, Redundant)

Dancindan84 (1056246) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250728)

I can't be the only person who read that as, "Pope Denounces Some Biotch"

She was asking for it...

And the Pope's moral authority comes from ...? (2, Insightful)

A nonymous Coward (7548) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250754)

We listen to engineers and scientists when they have demonstrated some expertise in their fields of expertise.

Considering how much scandal comes out of the religious leadership field, I'd say religious leaders are no more moral than ordinary people and have no better grasp of ethics than ordinary people.

dear pope: (0, Flamebait)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250766)

human life is not a fungal growth. before the second trimester, life is very much nothing but a blob, and completely undeserving of equal protection as a human being. before 3 months, what is growing in a woman after conception is worthy of the same level of consideration you would give to your next hamburger patty, and nothing more

where do we draw the line exactly? i don't know. beware anyone who does. all i know is that one month after conception as compared to 6 months after conception really are completely different measures, vastly different

the important thing is that because we don't know where to draw the line exactly does not mean we can't draw a line at all. and anyone who thinks that when a sperm meets an egg we get something that is equivalent to a human child is flat out lunatic religious fanatic

Hey, no problem Mr. Pope. (4, Insightful)

zerofoo (262795) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250810)

If you don't like the research, refuse the treatments when you are sick in the hospital. Why do some religious types feel they need to impart their beliefs on everyone else?

Don't agree with or like abortion - fine - don't have one. Don't like what you hear on the radio or see on TV - fine also, change the channel.

Just don't tell me what to do - I have a brain in my skull and I know how to use it independently.

-ted

Re:Hey, no problem Mr. Pope. (0, Flamebait)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250994)

Just don't tell me what to do - I have a brain in my skull and I know how to use it independently.

Religious types don't like that kind of talk. The whole point of religion is to tell you how to live your life, because the high priests know better than you what's right for you. Don't forget to give them 10% of your income, BTW.

Oh, man. There is no god, let us move on. (1)

roman_mir (125474) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250826)

How about that, let's just stipulate that there is no god and be done with the pope already?

Whether god exists or not is irrelevant in any case, everything that we see in this universe can be explained without any divine forces, thus those forces are majorly irrelevant even if they existed. But just for the sake of simplicity let's declare that god is not a consideration where science is concerned.

Re:Oh, man. There is no god, let us move on. (3, Insightful)

JustNiz (692889) | more than 6 years ago | (#22251036)

>> let's just stipulate that there is no god and be done with the pope already?

Firstly let me make it clear that I personally do not follow any religion, so have no iterest in defending the christian church, however:
* There is no evidence that proves God doesn't exist. Until that is found your stipulation has no merit.
* His point seems to be that this stuff is an affront to human dignity, which has nothing to do with religion. E.g. I for example have dignity yet am not a follower of any religion.

Actually without reading more than the headline, I think the pope's point is very well made. Personally I feel scientists in some cases are definately going too far. I also have seen more than enough evidence to prove that most companies will do anything to make money for now, regardless of the ethics or wider implication of their actions.

Predictable comments...engage points instead? (5, Insightful)

nebrshugyo (1216152) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250874)

Lets try a thought experiment: pretent that the Dalai Lama had spoken the Pope's words. Are those words more or less palatible based on who says them?

You don't even need to be religious to see that the commodization of human life, to say nothing of unfettered transhumanism, are not, on their face, good things. Call me a pesimist, but I'm more with Bill Joy than Ray Kurzweil.

A final thought: if there was the slightest chance that, by a snap of the fingers, I could remove all the harm to others attributed to the Roman Catholic Church, I'd do it - and I'm Catholic. Unfortunately, none of the evils attributed to Catholicism in particular or religion in general would disappear. So the cause must be elsewhere.

Re:Predictable comments...engage points instead? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22251040)

Thank you! Most of these comments are making fun of the pope's hat, inaccurately calling him a nazi, or criticisms of things that happened 500 years ago. I am not a Catholic, just wondering if slashdotters have anything intelligent to say on the topic....

Opinion on strong AI (1)

Plazmid (1132467) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250894)

I wonder what the Pope's opinion is on strong artificial intelligence and transhumanism?

in other new (1)

techpawn (969834) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250918)

Some leader of a church said genetic research is wrong? This is non-news flamebate

And I know I just bit...

So... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22250948)

Is biotech less evil or more evil than homosexuality?

Twist on the article (1)

cfulmer (3166) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250952)

TFA only mentioned artificial insemination tangentially, where the Pope opposes creating embryos, screening out the ones prone to disease and then choosing from the remainder. It doesn't talk about artificial insemination directly.

I can see how that would be an affront to human dignity -- it basically says that people with, say, Downs Syndrome, are less worthy of living than those without.

The counter-example is this: suppose that sexual orientation has a genetic component; if the right genes are present, a person is more likely to be gay. Would it be acceptable for parents to screen out for that?

If the embryo is just a lump of cells, then what does it matter? It would be about as bad as deciding to remove a rainbow bumper sticker from a used car you just bought.

Moral Preaching (1)

EEPROMS (889169) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250954)

from an organization that has billions in assets when there are families of 6 living on a dollar a day sort of doesn't work for me for some reason.

but without artificial impregnation... (1)

shadylookin (1209874) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250962)

aren't they violating the be fruitful and multiply clause? I think the catholic church should focus on religion, every time the pope tries to tell the world and it's governments what they should do in their personal lives they just end up looking backwards and foolish.

Is anyone listening? (0, Flamebait)

shaitand (626655) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250964)

Normally I say judge the message and not the messager but in this case the message is an opinion that millions are expected to accept because of the messenger.

The man is a Nazi for god sake. Is he really entitled to a voice on the subject of ethical bioengineering?

An affront to human dignity? (1)

Entropius (188861) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250988)

... condemning millions of Latin Americans to live in squalor as a result of overpopulation, stemming directly from your vendetta against contraception? ... refusing to abort the fetus in an ectopic pregnancy*? ... condemning hundreds of millions of people simply because they are inherently attracted to the same sex rather than the opposite? ... insisting that people in persistive vegetative states be kept alive for decades, with great expenditure of effort, despite no possibility of recovery?

Yes, I'd say that Catholicism is an affront to human dignity.

Dear Pope, (1)

florescent_beige (608235) | more than 6 years ago | (#22250998)

Thank you for your recent guidance on my medical issues, in particular my infertility. I have been wondering how to proceed. Now I understand it is God's will for me not to have children.

I will be sure to convey your disapproval to my sister that she allowed doctors to perform a Cesarean Section on her during a difficult childbirth. This was, after all, nothing more than medical intervention to allow procreation and must therefore be against God's will, correct?

I look forward to your continued leadership on these issues. In particular I will find inspiration in the way you will accept God's will by not seeking medical solutions to your future health issues.

A Good Catholic

Dope Denounces Some Biotech as Affront (1)

sm62704 (957197) | more than 6 years ago | (#22251002)

At first glnce I read the headline as "Dope Denounces Some Biotech as Affront to 'Human Dignity'". Chalk it up to endorphins, the weather change made my arthritis hurt like hell yesterday. Now THAT was an affront to my human dignity, I'll tell you!

The pope may not be a dope, but the idea that artificial insemination is an "affront to human dignity" is a dopey idea. Many Catholic ideas are pretty dopey IMO (of course, I'm sure many Catholics will think some of my beliefs are pretty dopey as well).

An example of what I'm talking about is the "seven deadly sins". Where in the Bible did they get the idea that laziness is a sin? And don't point me to the Old Testament, because the old testament says eating pork is a sin. And how about lust? When a young man lusts after a young woman and the lust grows to love and they marry, how is that a sin?

There are in fact ten deadly sins. Moses brought them down from the mountain.

I would agree with the pope about human cloning, but most definitely not embryonic stem cell research. Rather than an affront to human dignity, it may lead to cures for diseases that ARE affronts to human dignity. Just ask Al Scheimers. Oh wait, Al is pissing his pants and drooling. Human dignity, you say?

-mcgrew

OT but why is a comment subject allowed fewer characters than a summary subject? And why was "human dignity" in quotations?

Secular Humanism (5, Insightful)

katorga (623930) | more than 6 years ago | (#22251010)

The "dignity of man" referenced by the Catholic Pope, regardless of modern religion, is the basis of the enlightenment and of all modern secular humanist societies and of the concept of human rights. Once the concept of innate human dignity is gone, you end up with societies where human beings are nothing more than raw material for the State machine. As the concept fades you see inhumane state practices appear such as denying health care to the obese in the UK or mandatory abortions in China. The needs of people can be ignored when they become inconvenient or expensive to the state if there is no innate dignity of man.

Can Someone Send The Pope The Memo? (1)

xutopia (469129) | more than 6 years ago | (#22251012)

I can't believe this guy is coming out now to tell us that we should stop "embryonic stem cell research" because it "shattered" human dignity. If you want to bring back some form of dignity how about letting those suffering a glimmer of hope based on sound science rather than false promise? Also I'd really like it if someone would send him the memo. We don't need to hurt embryos [iht.com] anymore so the pope's latest message comes too late proving how irrelevant the church is to this discussion.

Define Irony (1)

crazygonutz (1230760) | more than 6 years ago | (#22251018)

I'm not Catholic, or an Atheist, but I think it's ironic that the atheists are bashing someone for saying what he believes in, while at the same time accusing him of bashing what they believe in. Let the man say what he wants, it's a free world!

CIAA (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22251028)

Hmm, it seems interesting that the pope would be against scientific research. Let's see, if we took away all the things science gave us over the years where would we be?... oh yeah, back in the days when the church was in control of things. Interesting how when someone's model base of power is undermined by technological progress they try to disrupt it to grasp stubbornly to the old ways. Gee, who else does this now-a-days?... I think it starts with an R... Your time is over, stop pissing in our corn flakes.
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