Soundbites on YouTube

Politicians around the world are gingerly using YouTube to make policy statements, or maybe just to get their soundbites out there while avoiding having to have a press conference.

Now some Catholic seminarians have parodied the Mac vs PC ads (which I already loathed anyway) to convey the Vatican’s doctrine on Natural Family Planning vs Contraception.

They’ve got three videos up now, with more planned.

Now I disagree with the practicality of Natural Family Planning, although I applaud much of the sentiment: avoiding excessive chemical intervention with bodily functions, increased communication and intimacy between partners about avoiding unplanned pregnancies etc. Increased communication about sex before it actually happens can only be a good thing.

Unfortunately, NFP requires abstention during ovulation, which is the woman’s peak time of sexual desire, thus NFP involves a lifetime of women acquiescing to sex outside their peak period of desire and being forbidden from other forms of attaining orgasm during the peak period of sexual desire. Sounds like a recipe for frustration and resentment for me.

I notice that these videos simply don’t mention at all that NFP works (as far as it does work) only for people who are in monogamous committed relationships, which of course to the Church means marriage. So they’re simply not addressing the rather large population of adults who are not yet married but who are interested in sexual intercourse anyway. The unsaid only option for unmarried adults is abstinence. I’m not surprised that they’re not addressing that.

Anyway, it’s a very interesting exercise in propogating a set of policy soundbites. I await the replies that will surely multiply in the next few weeks with great interest. I also wonder when various lobbying groups on various social issues are going to fully embrace the viral aspect of YouTube etc for getting their soundbites more effectively out into the social consciousness. Let’s face it – I’m blogging about the videos above because they were put together with a modicum of wit about a controversial issue. Other people will do the same. If other groups do similiar things, those videos will be viraled and generate discussion. Get your issues out there, folks.

crossposted at LP

Categories: arts & entertainment, culture wars, Politics, religion, technology

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4 replies

  1. Sunday trivia: On The Insiders this morning, there was an interview with Kevin Andrews in which it emerged that he is a paying member of a US group that encourages the economic boycotting of companies that produce contraceptives.

  2. That’s disturbing, E. Thanks.

  3. What you’re describing is one method of NFP – there are plenty of other ways of practising NFP (or do you prefer to call it Fertility Awareness if it’s not the Vatican-approved method?) that don’t require abstention in the fertile period. People can use barrier methods in the fertile window (though this will lower the effectiveness of the method to that of barriers, meaning from around 98% down to 85-95% depending on choice of barrier method), or sticking to non-PIV sex in the fertile period.
    FA is clearly not a method suitable for women with unpredictable cycles, couples who won’t or can’t communicate or commit to it or don’t have access to thorough education in using it, and it doesn’t protect from pregnancy in the case of coercion/rape – but I do see FA, like the lactational amenorrhea method, as the baby being thrown out with the bathwater rather a lot.

  4. Yes, for the purposes of this discussion I’m pointing out the flaws in the Vatican-approved NFP that the videos are promoting.
    I agree that FA makes a lot of sense for others who merely wish to avoid chemical contraception and who still rely on barrier methods or non-PIV sex at the fertile periods. I wonder how many Catholics actually stick to no orgasms other than when penis meets vagina, though.

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