Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Andrew M. Greenwell, Esq.

7/10/2012 (2 years ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

This requires repentance, metanoia. A turning around. A new start.

The problem with the "practicing Catholic" Melinda Gates is not in her end of desiring to improve the life for everyone.  This is a goal with which we of the household of faith will not be heard to quibble.  The problem is in the means she has selected to achieve that end.  She wants to teach parents in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia that, to "bring every good thing" to their children, they must practice vice.

Melinda Gates

Melinda Gates

Highlights

By Andrew M. Greenwell, Esq.

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

7/10/2012 (2 years ago)

Published in U.S.

Keywords: Melinda Gates, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Contraception, Intrinsic Evil, Andrew Greenwell, Gospel of life, Culture of life, Culture of death


CORPUS CHRISTI, TX (Catholic Online) - "To whom much is given, much will be required." (Luke 12:48)  If there is anyone to whom much has been given--at least in wealth, though apparently not in fidelity to Christ and his Church--it is the self-proclaimed "practicing Catholic" Melinda Gates who with her husband Bill Gates is co-chair of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

Sadly, she disappoints.  Instead of using her vast wealth to promote virtue--the real means to human happiness, human development, and social justice--she is using her wealth to promote vice.  To quote St. Augustine: Quanta bona de auro quod habet bonus? quanta mala de auro quod habet malus?  How good is gold in the hands of the good?  How bad is gold in the hands of the bad?

Melinda Gates has recently announced that contraception promotion will be the primary goal of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which, in terms of its financial resources of $34 billion, is the world's largest philanthropic organization.  The supposed "beneficiaries" of her largesse: families in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia who, in her view, need more access and more reliable access to artificial contraception.  The goal: to raise $4 billion to assure that 120 million more women get access to artificial contraception.  "This will be my lifetime's work at the foundation," she claims.

The secular promotion machine, well-oiled by its anti-Catholic animus and big pharma dollars, is churning its wheels and opposing all critics like a juggernaut.  From a well-crafted speech posted on TEDxChange, to an article in Newsweek, to appearances with Dr. Sanjay Gupta on CNN and Stephen Colbert in the Colbert Report, the propaganda machine is working overtime.  We can expect to hear more from the propaganda machine as everyone gears up to the London Summit on Family Planning on July 11, 2012, where Ms. Gates's vision will be discussed.

Ms. Gates proclaims herself to be a "practicing Catholic," and parades out her Catholic credentials as if they were family heirlooms instead of a living, breathing tradition.  She makes a point of letting people know that her mom's great uncle was a Jesuit priest, and her great aunt a Dominican nun, and that she was educated by a gaggle of apparently "progressive" Ursuline nuns at the Urusline Academy in Dallas.  But where is her devotion to the teaching Church?  Where is her devotion to Peter? Did she ever learn the maxim ubi Petrus, ibi Ecclesia, ibi Christi est,  where Peter is, there is the Church, there is Christ?

Melinda Gates, our contracepting and contraceptive-embracing "practicing Catholic," shrugs off any criticism from the teaching Church.  She, of course, knows the Church's teaching and knows that what she is promoting goes against the Church's express teaching, so she's not one that can plead invincible ignorance.  We cannot say in the spirit of Christ, "Forgive her, for she knows not what she's doing."  (Cf. Luke 23:34)  She knows exactly what she's doing, how she's doing it, and she has the money to do it.  That is what makes her choice so tragic.  It's what makes it a scandal.

According to Newsweek, Ms. Gates stated that denying the Church's teachings on contraception "was difficult," but in time such rejection "came to seem morally necessary."  It seems that Ms. Gates views the Church's social and moral teachings to be something like a smorgasbord where we can choose food to our liking since she has to "wrestle with which pieces of religion do I use and believe in my life."  Whatever this is, this is not what a "practicing Catholic" does.  The Catholic thing is the whole kit and caboodle.  You don't get to pick and choose what you like. If you do so, you invariably gravitate to the sweets and forget your vegetables.

Apparently, Ms. Gates further finds that the Church's social teachings are inconsistent or at odds.  So she feels she has to reject the contraception "piece" so that she could serve the "other piece of the Catholic mission, which is social justice."  What her concept of "social justice," is rather unclear.

In fact, her social justice doctrine seems spiritually obtuse.  She insists that her contraceptive program is good because she believes "that all lives have equal value."  But this is a massive non-sequitur.  How does the principle that lives have equal value give rise to any possible conclusion on the liciety of contraception?

"We're not going to agree about everything, but that's OK," she tells Dr. Sanjay Gupta in her CNN interview.  Oh such marvelous tolerance exhibited by Ms. Gates to the teaching of the Church and specifically the Pope!  (The prior sentence, of course, is meant to be read with dripping sarcasm.)  In all actuality, such insouciance to Church teaching when an intrinsic evil is involved is nothing short of demonic.  One thinks of the rich young ruler who turned away from Christ.  Had Dr. Gupta been there our rich young ruler might have said something equally self-justifying like, "We're not going to agree about everything, but that's OK." 

No it's not OK.  Methinks that Melinda Gates may have lost her soul.

Melinda Gates does not get it.  She thinks that the contraception is but a neutral "tool," the vice to be avoided is promiscuity, and the end to be achieved is relief of poverty.  In her view, contraception does not lead to promiscuity and relieves physical poverty.  While all that is quite debatable, it should be pointed out that Ms. Gates seems only to care about material things.  Not once does Ms. Gates seem concerned about her supposed beneficiaries' moral poverty.  Not once does she talk about improving their virtue.  Not once does she talk about their spiritual souls.

It all makes consummate sense to her.  After all she and Bill used artificial contraception and apparently still use it (she's proud to say that she and Bill will have sex this year in her talk on TEDxChange eliciting guffaws from the crowd), and they are anything but promiscuous and they are exceedingly rich!  It follows that the same good things can be expected from those in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia!  They should all live like Melinda and Bill Gates, at least as it pertains to their sexual mores. 

(By the way, Melinda, having sex while using artificial contraception even within marriage is a mortal sin against chastity, just like promiscuity.) 

What Ms. Gates seems completely oblivious to is that the use of artificial contraception is itself a vice. And so her entire life is apparently dedicated to promoting a vice.  And this is a tragedy.

The problem with Melinda Gates is that she is infected by a virus, a Trojan horse.  That Trojan horse is utilitarianism.  At heart, she does not have a Catholic moral view.  The end of her project is vaguely to help those in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia "bring every good thing" to their children.  "Where is the controversy in that?" she rhetorically asks.  Of course, there is no controversy in the end if the end is defined that way.

The problem with Melinda Gates is not in her end in desiring to improve life for everyone.  This is a goal with which we of the household of faith will not be heard to quibble.  The problem is in the means she has selected to achieve that end.  She wants to teach parents in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia that, to "bring every good thing" to their children, they must practice vice. 

Of course, Melinda Gates does not call it vice.  Like a good technocrat, she calls the vice she's promoting by rather innocuous euphemisms: "tools," "technologies," "interventions," "method."

She can call it what she wants in a transparent effort to suppress her wounded conscience which knows better, but a "practicing Catholic" would know that there are some acts that are intrinsic evils (intrinsece malum).  A "practicing Catholic"--at least one with Melinda Gates's acumen and resources--would know or should know that John Paul II in his encyclical on moral questions Veritatis splendor, ¶ 80, reiterated the existence of such intrinsic evils.

Intrinsic evils are things which we must never do, regardless of the benefit we believe we may get for ourselves or for others by doing them.  The intentional taking of an innocent human life, for example, is an intrinsic evil.  A "practicing Catholic" would know that one may not kill an innocent human being even if it were to save the whole world.  Such a prohibition is exceptionless.  To borrow an example from Honoré de Balzac's story Le Pčre Goriot, the prohibition against murder applies to protect even an old mandarin in China whom we could kill to our advantage and no one's knowledge simply by exerting our will without ever leaving Paris.

A "practicing Catholic" would know that the use of artificial contraception--including the injectable "contraceptive" Depo-Provera which seems to be Ms. Gates's contraception of choice to impose upon those victims of her misguided largesse--is such an intrinsic evil.  Not only is artificial contraception against the natural moral law, it is against the express, unalterable, infallibly-proclaimed, and irreformable teachings of the Church precisely because it is against such natural law, which is to say against the eternal law of God.

(Aside from its medical side effects, which include osteoporosis and cancer and a host of other problems, the "contraceptive" injection Depo-Provera has both contraceptive and abortifacient effects.  Melinda Gates's support for Depo-Provera gives a lie to her claims that she and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation--which has notoriously supported Planned Parenthood and the International Planned Parenthood Federation in the past--is against abortions.)

Surely a "practicing Catholic" with the intellectual and financial resources that Melinda Gates has at her disposal can afford a copy of the Catechism of the Catholic Church (¶ 2370) and understand its teaching which is announced in no uncertain terms: "Periodic continence, that is, the methods of birth regulation based on self-observation and the use of infertile periods, is in conformity with the objective criteria of morality.  These methods respect the bodies of the spouses, encourage tenderness between them, and favor the education of an authentic freedom.  In contrast, 'every action which, whether in anticipation of the conjugal act, or in its accomplishment, or in the development of its natural consequences, proposes, whether as an end or as a means, to render procreation impossible' is intrinsically evil."

Does Melinda Gates disrespect the bodies of the folks in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia?  Does she wish to discourage tenderness between the spouses in these regions?  Does she wish to deny them authentic freedom?  Or does she simply wish to spend $4 billion to indoctrinate 120 million people against the teaching of the Church?  Either option seems rather heinous for a "practicing Catholic."

Melinda Gates is infected by a virus, the virus of utilitarianism--the legal ethic that measures everything by cost and benefits and has known of an intrinsic evil, since anything can be justified by the supposed good ends.  Whatever the virus, it has consumed her and her Catholicism.  She is not a "practicing Catholic," regardless of her insistence. 

She could be.  It would be good if she would really be a "practicing Catholic."  It would be better for her own soul if she would be a "practicing Catholic."  It would be better for the souls of the 120 million women in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia that are about to get morally assaulted if she would be a "practicing Catholic."  But to be a "practicing Catholic" means to believe that artificial contraception is an intrinsic evil and that no good--however great--justifies its use.  It also means to try--with God's grace--to abide by that teaching.  It also means that if we have sinned by our use of artificial contraception, we should confess our sins, and God is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.  (cf.  1 John 1:9)

But that requires repentance, metanoia.  A turning around.  A new start.

In words Melinda Gates would understand, it would require her to reboot.

-----

Andrew M. Greenwell is an attorney licensed to practice law in Texas, practicing in Corpus Christi, Texas.  He is married with three children.  He maintains a blog entirely devoted to the natural law called Lex Christianorum.  You can contact Andrew at agreenwell@harris-greenwell.com.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for June 2015
Universal:
That immigrants and refugees may find welcome and respect in the countries to which they come.
Evangelization: That the personal encounter with Jesus may arouse in many young people the desire to offer their own lives in priesthood or consecrated life.


Rosaries, Crosses, Prayer Cards and more... by Catholic Shopping .com


Comments


More U.S.

The Martyrdom of the Apostles Peter and Paul Invites Us Into a New Missionary Age Watch

Image of On this great Feast we need to rededicate ourselves to being true witnesses, with an adult faith, willing to participate fully in this new missionary age of the Catholic Church. May the blood of the Martyrs continue to be the seed of the Church. St. Peter and St. Paul, pray for us!

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

Since at least the Third Century, Christians have commemorated this day as a Solemnity, the day when the two pillars of the Church, the great Apostles, Peter and Paul, met the Lord whom they served with such beauty, face to face in the communion of eternal love. ... continue reading


Junior lifeguard competition cancelled after 15 great white sharks spotted swimming near shore in California beach Watch

Image of

By Talia Ramos (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The NorCal Junior Lifeguards competition was cancelled following the reported sightings of at least 15 great white sharks swimming near the shore in Aptos, Santa Cruz. Helicopters and boats were sent off to determine the situation before the event, confirming that ... continue reading


Fear of ISIS expansion along U.S. border grows Watch

Image of The fear of the ISIS breaching security in the southern borders of the U.S. is being addressed by the government.

By Linky C. (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The United States is considering the possible breach in the security of its southern borders. With drugs, illegal immigrants and several illegal activities being localized in this area, the militant group, ISIS may actually target this region for their terrorist plans. ... continue reading


United States Population: More minority children than whites, more whites dying than being born Watch

Image of Minority children are currently dominating the number of native Americans in the US.

By Linky C. (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The United States' population is composed of Americans and millions of immigrants and foreigners considered to be part of the "minority group." As the years pass, the American population is now starting to become dominated by the "minority group."roup. MUNTINLUPA, ... continue reading


8-year-old boy bitten by shark in knee-deep water, fourth case over past two weeks in NC Watch

Image of

By Talia Ramos (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A frantic 911 call was made after an 8-year-old boy was bitten by a shark while swimming in knee-deep water at a beach in North Carolina. During the emergency call, the boy is heard screaming, as the caller tells the operator that his foot has punctured holes and ... continue reading


California legislature's who HATE Catholics want Father Juniper Serra statue OUT of Capitol Watch

Image of Bl. Junipero Serra played a leading role in California history, helping to convert thousands of native Californians to Christianity and teaching them new technologies.

By CNA/EWTN News

A statue of Franciscan missionary and saint-to-be Father Junipero Serra has stood in the U.S. Capitol since 1931, but its future may depend on an upcoming hearing in the California legislature and the success of a "Let's Save Serra" campaign. SACRAMENTO, CA ... continue reading


HERE COMES THE POPE - As many as 1.5 million faithful expected to greet Pope Francis in Philadelphia in September Watch

Image of More than 1.5 million people are expected for the Mass with Pope Francis in at that time. About 12,000 people were registered for the congress earlier this month.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Excitement is building for the visit from Pope Francis in Philadelphia this coming September. The Pope will be there for the once-every-three-years World Meeting of Families from September 22 through 25. Archbishop Charles J. Chaput met with the Pope after the ... continue reading


At least 10 Islamic State suspects living in the U.S. arrested by FBI Watch

Image of The FBI is targeting individuals thought to be planning attacks in the U.S. The bureau is concentrating on direct arrests in lieu of surveillance.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

In response to a perception of increased attacks on U.S. soil by Islamic State - following the thwarted attack in the "Draw Muhammad" contest in Garland, Texas -- the FBI has rounded up more potential "lone wolf" terrorists with ties to ISIS. LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading


Homosexuals welcome to greet Pope in Philadelphia - but they cannot seize event to protest Watch

Image of Currently, the only event dedicated to gay issues at the event features the founder of the Spiritual Friendship Initiative Ron Belgau, a celibate gay Catholic.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Archbishop Charles Chaput says that homosexuals will be welcome to attend the Catholic family congress in Philadelphia when Pope Francis visits the U.S. September. However - they cannot use the event to attack the church's teachings, he says. LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading


American woman barely escapes death after co-worker tries beheading her Watch

Image of

By Hannah Marfil (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

For Traci Johnson, life will never be the same. Every day she still feels the horror from almost being beheaded by her former co-worker. Although she fortunately escaped death, another co-worker was reportedly decapitated by the same man. The suspect was fired after a ... continue reading


All U.S. News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Acts 12:1-11
1 It was about this time that King Herod started ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 34:2-3, 4-5, 6-7, 8-9
2 I will praise Yahweh from my heart; let the humble ... Read More

Gospel, Matthew 16:13-19
13 When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi ... Read More

Reading 2, Second Timothy 4:6-8, 17-18
6 As for me, my life is already being poured away as ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for June 29th, 2015 Image

St. Peter, First Pope
June 29: Simon Peter or Cephas, the first pope, Prince of the Apostles, ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter