Don't you think it is time that leaders from all sides of the debate on sex, abortion, marriage, etc. sit down and as adults discuss the subject with an open mind and in a non-judgmental way?  And do it openly?  And do it so our kids can observe it?  And so we can move forward without demonizing and slandering each other in the process?  Will civilized leaders please step forward.

Once you open the can of worms about sex in America, all hell breaks loose.  There is no middle ground.  In fact nobody holds any opinions that offer adult and/or civilized discussion.  There is only I am right and you are wrong offerings!  And we call ourselves adult???

It is like two people who have been a couple for a long time.  They have come to know the other person's strongly held viewpoints.  And when they have one in which they differ, they never come closer on the issue, they only grow farther and farther apart.  They dig in their heels. 

All abortions are wrong!  Abortions should be open to all women who need one!  Abortion only encourages and promotes sex among the young and the unmarrieds!  Sex is a natural and beautiful part of life and people should be encouraged to enjoy it responsibly and lovingly! 

The Roman Catholic Church, for example, pontificates about abortion being sinful and people using it as being sinners.  Well, we are all sinners.  But self-proclaimed members of the Roman Catholic Church are using birth control [also considered wrong by the Church}, and some use abortion in some cases.  Every poll taken on the subject shows that Roman Catholic Church members use birth control at least as commonly as non-members.  Now what?  Ignore that in the Vatican?  Or come to grips with it?  Discuss it openly with your members?  In fact, openly and respectfully discuss all matters related to sex openly?  Why not?  Our kids are paying attention to our openness or our closeting.

The puritanical streak that runs throughout American society has not historically come from the Roman Catholic Church, but from pentecostals, fundamentalists, and "strict" Protestant groups.  But the Roman Catholic Church has certainly carried that banner in ongoing American society.  Is the Catholic Church relevant?   Church leadership is concerned, very concerned.  The Church in Rome is confronted with all sorts of current, major problems, and sex, birth control, and abortion are but among the large problems.

What does this teach our kids?  Is it possible that our failure to come to grips with openly discussing these social considerations about sex may ultimately cause a breakdown of the family institution?  That would be a very large, unintended consequence.  But social mores, ignorance, rebellion against archaic rules, science, etc. are all working against the Catholic Church and causing unintended results.  All puritanical elements that pigeon-hole sex into the dark, secret shadows are shooting themselves in the foot and causing the very antithesis of their preaching to happen.  In a real sense, gay unions are outlasting those of the straight society in many cases.  What are we causing to happen?  Are we destroying our own society?  What happens to a nation and society in which a man running for Congress openly proclaims that pregnancies caused by rape are because God wanted that child to be born?  Think about it.  It is a symptom of American society.  Things like that are canaries in the mine.

Are we to take our cues from the Roman Church and right-wing religious groups?  Are there any wide implications of the horrible pedophilia epidemic in the Roman Catholic Church?   What are we to make of the sleazy record of fundamentalist, TV evangelists?  Why are traditional, church marriages failing at alarming rates?  Why are so many young girls/women getting pregnant and seeking an abortion when birth control could be readily available to them?  What role does objective counseling play in this?

Dare we confront both the topic of sex and the topic of the Church's role in it?  Or should it remain in the closet?  Should the laity demand changes?  Do we owe change to our society? our kids?

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