Presidents Kennedy, Johnson, and Nixon fostered a policy of government promotion of contraception. That is according to an article by Russell Shaw entitled “How U.S. government got tied up with contraception.” Mr. Shaw shows the complicity of certain high-profile Catholics in advancing the government-sponsored contraception agenda. (This has been mentioned on our site before.)
I have excerpted a few paragraphs from Mr. Shaw’s article below. To his facts, I would like to add two considerations. First, the point is made often on this site that American “conservatism” seeks to conserve little that is of genuine value to Catholics. This is true for more than one reason, but the one I’ll give here is this: American Conservatism is chiefly Protestant. It seeks to “conserve” the revolution that began in 1517. Given that that revolution was, well, revolutionary, societies founded upon it lack an intrinsic principle of conservatism. They must perforce be ever in evolution, always in flux. The shining “City Upon a Hill” that the Puritans crossed the ocean to establish has evolved. Just as far from Catholicity as it ever was, that city is now a secular Puritan one. She is still messianic, but now salvation comes not through the Gospel according to John Winthrop, Jonathan Edwards, and Cotton Mather, but through the secular WASP Gospel of messianic “democracy,” which seems to mean anything but self-determination for those lesser nations whom our helping hand smites. (Thus far pertains to the first passage of Mr. Shaw’s that I have emboldened.)
The second point I would like to make, corresponding to the second emboldened passage of Shaw’s, relates to another theme that frequently makes its way onto these pages: Most U.S. foreign involvement — our war mongering, regime changing, nation building, and remapping of other people’s homelands and continents — is contrary to Catholic social principles, including, but not limited to, the just war doctrine. During the Johnson administration, writes Shaw, “the U.S. Agency for International Development was introducing family planning into its overseas programs.” And there it has remained, ever since.
Where American fighting men (and, God help us!, women) bleed and die, our government sets up “family planning,” subsidized by taxpayer money to the tune of…
- FY 1995 – $541.6 million
- FY 1996 – $432.0 million
- FY 1997 – $385.0 million
- FY 1998 – $385.0 million
- FY 1999 – $385.0 million
- FY 2000 – $372.5 million
- FY 2001 – $425.0 million
- FY 2002 – $446.5 million
- FY 2003 – $446.5 million
- FY 2004 – $429.5 million
- FY 2005 – $437.3 million
- FY 2006 – $435.6 million
- FY 2007 – $435.6 million (source)
The “City Upon a Hill” is brightly shining the light of “family planning,” which is Newspeak for life prevention. This happens in “conservative” administrations and “liberal” ones, as my source for the above dollar amount indicates. Now, of course, the Obama Administration is taking this spending to new heights.
We learn from the United Nations Population Fund that “In Iraq access to contraception has been assured since 1993…” (source: this Word Doc). That’s post-Desert-Storm Iraq. Someone with the time and determination could probably connect far more dots than that, exposing the affinity of American neo-colonialism with Malthusian social programs. Considering the contraceptive agenda that comes along with U.S. invasion, is this not yet one more reason to recall the Catholic doctrine of a just war?
Here are Russell Shaw’s promised excerpts:
Tracing these events in his book “Intended Consequences” (Oxford University Press, $60), historian Donald T. Critchlow says leaders of the campaign to get the government into birth control were “upper-class, Protestant, and white.”
President Johnson’s 1965 State of the Union address marked major turning point. In it Johnson called population growth an international problem that needed addressing, and soon the U.S. Agency for International Development was introducing family planning into its overseas programs. At home, birth control became a major component of Johnson’s War on Poverty.
Concern for the poor moved the Catholic hierarchy to support the anti-poverty campaign while muting opposition to family planning. The bishops merely insisted that it should be “non-coercive,” with other methods besides contraception also available.
By the time Johnson left office in 1969, Critchlow says, a sea change in government policy had occurred.