...the Journal

The Guest
Refrigerator Door

The new magnets are from Jeri's refrigerator. Jeri's fridge has some unusual stuff attached to it.

This is the last of Jeri's magnets--and another of her Curious George magnets.

Tomorrow we'll have another guest fridge!

* Discussion *

If you have anything to discuss, go to this link. Feel free to start a new discussion on anything.


I'm a Stranger Here Myself

Bill Bryson

I enjoyed his Australia book so much, I decided to try the one about this country.


Battersea Park Road
to Enlightenment

(this is a book I picked up in London)


Peter Pan

That's it for today!



17 June 2001

A headline in the paper this morning caught my eye. I read the article and I've been fuming about it all day.


The article continued, The Bay Area's 11 Catholic affiliated hospitals are among 620 medical centers nationwide that must stop performing sterilizations under an order issued yesterday by the nation's Roman Catholic bishops.

Well, isn't that just ducky. Now not only are the bishops dictating Catholic policy to Catholics, but also to non Catholics who happen to have the misfortune to have doctors affiliated with Catholic hospitals.

This angers me on so many levels it's difficult to even be coherent about it.

The bishops...declared sterilizations 'intrinsically evil' and put tubal ligation and vasectomies on the same foot as abortion and euthanasia...

How nice it must be to sit in regal homes, with a staff to wait on your every whim and to make pronouncements like this which affect thousands of lives. This isn't killing a baby, if you believe that abortion is killing a baby (which I don't). This is acting responsibly to prevent pregnancy.

But then I forget. Catholic hospitals and medical centers aren't allowed to prescribe birth control pills or provide birth control information either. How silly of me to have overlooked that point.

The order could prove a serious hardship on some people, especially poor women in rural areas where hospitals are few and far between.

No shit. Imagine some poor woman in the heartland of America, having a baby a year, with a husband who is out of work, and only one hospital for hundreds of miles. She wants to be a good mom and take care of the kids she has and so, acting responsibly, she decides to opt for sterilization to prevent her from having more babies than she can handle. Intrinsically evil??? What the hell is "evil" about acting responsibly? She's not aborting a fertilized egg. She's not preventing implantation of a fertilized egg by using an IUD. She's not putting foreign substances into her system that might prevent conception. No. She is merely trying to stop things before they ever get started.

Or her husband loves his wife enough to ask for a vasectomy to prevent another child from being conceived.

How evil of them. How dare they act in such an irresponsible manner. Never mind that they are Baptists and don't believe in Catholic teaching. The bishops decree that it must not be done, and so it won't be done.

...the new rules apply not only to Catholic hospitals, but to non-Catholic hospitals owned in whole or in part by Catholic hospital chains.

And how do the non-Catholic hospitals feel about having their medical policies dictated by non-medical, Catholic clergy?

"Hospitals were told at the time of merging with Catholic hospitals or health care systems that abortion was the only problem and they could accommodate other services," said one hospital administrator.

But Archbishop Daniel E. Pilarczyk of Cincinnati, who helped draft the tougher standard, told reporters yesterday that those arrangements will no longer be allowed.

I guess telling lies, and duping corporations for the purpose of a profitable merger is OK, but a man and wife trying to act responsibly in the raising of their children are "intrinsically evil" for even considering controlling the number of children they have.

I've asked this question before, but where was the church the day I nearly threw one of my kids against a wall because I had had no sleep for days, had been dealing with crying babies and fighting toddlers and just had cracked. That was the day I called and made an appointment to get an IUD. I had given birth to five children in six years. Like good Catholic parents, we had been practicing rhythm, but it didn't work for us.

They say breastfeeding helps prevent pregnancy. After David (#5) Was born, I was nursing him exclusively (i.e., no supplements or solid foods), I was also nursing Tom who, though a toddler, was jealous of the new baby and so went from nursing once or twice a day to nursing on a newborn schedule, so it was like nursing twins. And I was also pumping milk to donate to a baby in the hospital with a malabsorption syndrome, whom I had worked with for two years. I was a bloody dairy, pumping out milk by the quart on an hourly basis and still I found myself able to conceive exactly one month after David's birth.

The thought of having a sixth child turned me intrinsically evil, and I've never regretted it for one minute.

I would like to issue a challenge to the 209 (out of 216) bishops who voted for this lovely new rule. I want them each to be given five children, under the age of--oh let's be generous--10. (For me it was 6, but I'll keep in mind their inexperience). Let 2 of the kids have the stomach flu, with vomiting and diarrhea. Let one be an insomniac who will only cry all night. And let one have ADD.

No fair having housekeepers.

Let the dear bishops live in the house with this brood, do all the housework, cook the meals, and take care of the kids for a month. 24 hours a day.

At the end of the month, let's take that vote again and find out out how intrinsically evil they feel sterilization really is.

And if they still think it's intrinsically evil, send them back to the house with the brood and infant twins for another month.

Somewhere, somehow these celibate old men need to get a dose of reality and find out what it is they are doing to people--to families, to women, to children.

"God will provide," they tell mothers who cry to them for the answers. Well, I believe God provided me with medical professionals who have found the answers, who have learned how to help women and men act responsibly. They have learned to allow families to have the intelligence to ask for help when they know they are at or beyond their limits, and to give that help without any potential loss of life of an unborn child.

This, to me, is God-given "provision." How dare celibate old men with housekeepers sit back and condemn women, Catholic or non-Catholic, to have a baby every year just because they decide it's "intrinsically evil" to do what you can to limit your family to those children you know you can handle.

One Year Ago:
We get gassed

Some pictures from this journal
can be found at
Club Photo

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Created 6/15/01 by Bev Sykes