Prolife Forum: sexual assault care

sexual assault care QUESTION from Lori August 25, 2001 Is there a Catholic stand on the standard of care of sexual assault cases that present to the emergency department with expectations of receiving birth control to prevent pregnancy from the assault.

ANSWER by Mr. Troy Martz on September 1, 2001 Dear Lori:
Thank you for your question, their are two primary reasons why a Catholic cannot morally support giving emergency contraceptives or morning after pills.
First, if one assumes that such things are indeed contraceptive, they are inherently evil since they deny the dignity of human procreation. Since the Holy Spirit, the Lord and Giver of Life is directly involved with every new human life, contraception states very clearly that you believe that God doesn't know what He is doing. [That is one of the reasons why it is evil within marriage -- it essentially tells God that He is not welcome in the marriage.] We can never know what God's plan may be for that new life.
Of course, the reality is that these emergency contraceptive aren't contraceptive, they are abortifacient. The primary purpose of these chemical abortions (like the RU-486 poison) is to prevent the fertilized egg from implanting in the uterus. Thus, the new human life is killed before it even has a chance to grow.
Note: Many doctors will tell you that it is not a life. A doctor I know let me in a dirty little secret -- most of the medical community changed the definition of conception from the fertilization of the egg to the implantation of the zygote. When you use the new definition, it is easier to support various contraceptives (like Norplant) that are really primarily abortifatiants. It also becomes easier to destroy embryos (like left-overs from in vitro fertilization) when they are no longer wanted or to experiment on them. I find the parallels between this redefinition of human and previous redefinitions. Many justified slavery because they claimed the blacks weren't full humans (legally equal to 1/3 of a white), the Nazis believed that Jews (and others) were inferior and could be justly slaughtered. Those who deny the life of the unborn are just as wrong as slavers and Nazis, only abortion kills an average of 4500 per day in the US.
In short, as an informed Catholic, you cannot take part in this evil. In a sense, such actions are a second violation of the woman's God-given dignity. What she needs is love, care and prayer, not chemicals and irrational fear.
Pax Christi, Troy Martz

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