The Instigator
hutch976
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
Oromagi
Con (against)
Winning
5 Points

Feminism and Catholicism: The Church is not Misogynistic, in fact the polar opposite

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after 1 vote the winner is...
Oromagi
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/8/2016 Category: Society
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 539 times Debate No: 90883
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (13)
Votes (1)

 

hutch976

Pro

There are a large number of misconceptions about the Roman Catholic Church, it's history, it's teachings, and it's nature. I hope to combat those misconceptions, one of which is how the Church views women.

The church celebrates women, celebrates their femininity, celebrates their ability to bring life into a world of death, and in fact holds that the FIRST and perhaps GREATEST Christians in history were in fact, women! There is a biblical and historical foundation for all of these ideas.

This is in contrast to popular misconceptions about how women are viewed in the church, in that the are "subservient" to men and not as important. This is a gross over simplification, and I have never come across an institution that wants to protect, cherish, and celebrate women more than the Catholic Church.
Oromagi

Con

Thanks to Pro for instigating this debate.

Pro has muddled the central contention a bit by failing to simply state that the Roman Catholic Church is a particularly feminist organization, although that would be what's implied by claiming the Church to be the polar opposite of misogynist. Nor does arguing that the Church demonstrates love for women contradict accusations of misogyny. Thomas Jefferson loved some slaves, for example, but that does not absolve him of racism.

For guidance, Wikipedia offers the following:

"Misogyny is the hatred or dislike of women or girls. Misogyny can be manifested in numerous ways, including sexual discrimination, hostility, male supremacist ideas, belittling of women, violence against women, and sexual objectification of women." [1]

Building on this definition, if Con can offer evidence that the Catholic Church discriminates against women, Pro"s thesis will be proven false. If Con can show that the Church supports male supremacist ideologies, belittles or objectifies women, then Pro"s thesis will be proven false.

There are certainly also some questions of hostility and violence and Pro leaves open the consideration of the Church"s historical record but I think we can look past witch burnings of old to focus on the modern Church for the sake of relevancy. Which is not to say the modern Church does not still embrace some pretty archaic prejudices.

DOCTRINE

When the Pope was asked in 2014 if he detected an underlying misogyny within the Church, Francis replied, "The fact is that woman was taken from a rib." [2] Although intended as a joke, the Pope"s response well reflects the Church"s traditional outlook on women as an inferior class. Genesis depicts the first woman as a subset of the first man and the instrument of Adam"s fall from grace and God acknowledges Eve"s culpability by punishing all women with two additional curses: the pain of childbirth and the submission of women to the lordship of men.

In the New Testament, Paul instructs Timothy that women:

"should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man; she must be quiet. For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner." [3]

In the 2nd century Tertullian, the father of Latin Christianity, directly blamed all women for human mortality and suffering:

"Do you not realize that Eve is you? You are the devil's gateway, you desecrated that fatal tree; you first betrayed the law of God, you who softened up with your cajoling words the man against whom the devil could not prevail by force. The image of God, the man Adam, you broke him, it was child's play to you. You deserved death, and it was the son of God who had to die!" [4]

Augustine questioned the value of any woman in light of Eve"s transmission of original sin:

"What is the difference whether it is in a wife or a mother, it is still Eve the temptress that we must beware of in any woman" I fail to see what use woman can be to man, if one excludes the function of bearing children" [5]

The Church still teaches that Mary"s submission had to be sexless in order to inoculate Jesus from the transmission of the stain of Eve"s disobedience. [6]

In Catholic doctrine, women are not merely inferior, but by their inferiority the source of man"s corruption, the cause of all death and suffering.

INEQUITY

These core doctrines help explain the profound inequities within church institution. The majority of Catholics are women and probably always have been. Catholic women attend church more often and pray more often. There are more women called to religious life than men. Women dominate most Catholic funded educational and health services. Nevertheless, the church hierarchy is dominated by ordained roles and women have been excluded from ordination since about the third century. Of 572 Vatican City passport holders, only one is a woman. Women are not permitted to vote in papal elections. Where the church sets priorities, makes policy, plans budgets, women are absent.

Although Francis has begun preaching equal pay for women, the inequity of the church is evident in the disparity of compensation among Catholic religious. A parish priest is usually paid a modest salary, is permitted savings and investment and is typically fed and housed by the church. Nuns, on the other hand, are expected to support themselves beyond their ecclesiastical responsibilities, often as nurses or teachers. Their vow of poverty requires them to turn over compensation to their order and each order is responsible for their own upkeep.

POLITICS

So it is with little wonder that the Church opposes the ordination of women, opposes birth control and abortion, encourages large families that perpetuate cycles of poverty, opposes marriage equality and LGBT adoption because these are policies initiated by women in leadership roles. When sex abuse scandals threatened the integrity of the church, the male dominated Vatican focused on hiding the perpetrators rather than aiding the victims or reform precisely because they lacked a female perspective on rape.

Although the Church considered sex abuse accusations concerning roughly 3,000 priests from 2001-10, only one of those priests received the condemnation of excommunication. During the same period, multiple priests, parish boards, even some whole community organizations were excommunicated for promoting feminist issues.

In 2012, the Vatican called for a major investigation of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious, which represents roughly 80% of religious women in the US, immediately after that group voiced support for Obamacare. Investigating bishops threatened to suppress the LCWR if it did not reform what bishops perceived as a radical feminist agenda, including calls for female ordination and support of LGBT issues. Fortunately, the investigation was abruptly shut down after Francis became pope.

OBJECTIFICATION

Indeed, Francis seems to steering the Church away from some of its most misogynist policies and has promised to increase the presence of women in Vatican City. But Francis could hardly be called a feminist. During the same interview with the rib joke, Francis sought to compliment women by calling women "the most beautiful thing God has made."

That"s a telling remark. Women are seen, not as fellow souls in a world of suffering, not as partners in faith in search of salvation, not from the inside as just another human in need but from the outside, observed as beautiful, but apart. Until the Vatican acknowledges that its membership, its history, its lifeblood is predominately female and gives empowered expression to that female essence, the Catholic Church will remain as it is, misogynist at heart.

To the extent that these few examples demonstrate discrimination against women, male supremacy, belittlement and objectification of women, the Church has been shown to exhibit qualities of misogyny and so Pro"s contention must be refused.

I look forward to Pro"s response.

[1]https://en.m.wikipedia.org...
[2]http://www.theguardian.com...
[3]https://www.biblegateway.com...
[4]http://www.academia.edu...
[5]http://www.rejectionofpascalswager.net...
[6]http://www.vatican.va...
Debate Round No. 1
hutch976

Pro

So let's start with your given definition of "misogyny"

Misogyny is the hatred or dislike of women or girls. Catholicism does not hate women or girls.

You make a fallacy here in your next statement, " if Con can offer evidence that the Catholic Church discriminates against women"

Discrimination was not the definition, but merely one of many possible manifestations of misogyny. You can be hostile to something and not hate it. Not every soldier hates the enemies they fight and kill, but they are certainly hostile to them. Furthermore, the church is not hostile toward women. The church does not preach violence against women in any of it's doctrines, and it is CERTAINLY against the sexual objectification of women.

The sexual objectification of women happens a lot in the secular world though, through one of the largest and most profitable businesses in our world today: Pornography. Which is outright condemned by the Church BECAUSE it objectifies, belittles, and hurts women.

Now let's move onto the word "discrimination".

GOOGLE DEFINITON:

1.the unjust or prejudicial treatment of different categories of people or things, especially on the grounds of race, age, or sex:
"victims of racial discrimination" "
[more]

synonyms: prejudice " bias " bigotry " intolerance "
[more]

2.recognition and understanding of the difference between one thing and another:
"discrimination between right and wrong" "
[more]

So, I am assuming your are going to use the first definition. There is that word "unjust" in there. Well, equality is not always justice. Treating things that are UNEQUAL as EQUAL is as unjust as treating EQUAL things UNEQUALLY.

The role of women in the Church is not equal to men, nor is men's to women. They are just different. A mother and father have unequal roles in conceiving, carrying, caring for, and raising a child. Is one role less important? No, they are simply different.

Would you want to treat a fresh out of medical school surgeon the same as a seasoned veteran and specialist for a life or death decision? I should hope not, because they are not equals and that is not injustice.

Are there instances of discrimination that are in fact injustice? Yes, see the above explanation. Treating equal things unequally.

"Witch burnings..."

Yes that is a tricky and sticky subject for both of us and it would escape the scope of the argument. Soldiers in Vietnam were ordered by their superiors to commit the Mai Lai Massacre, and that instance alone can illustrate the complexity of "what an organization says" vs "what it practices" and all the gray areas in between. So for the sake of brevity we both agree to move on.

COUNTER TO DOCTRINE

You are obviously not well learned in scripture and Catholic teaching. Yes, Genesis tells us that woman was made from man's SIDE. For your spouse is to walk next to you and beside you as an equal, not behind you or in front of you. Eve was not made from his FOOT or his nether regions or his head.

Furthermore, God punishes man just as well as women by forcing him to labor and toil and die. Men also have submission, and if you stop taking verses out of context you would see that.

Your quotes of Paul are referring to women's roles as Bishops. This gets into a discussion about Apostolic Succession and Authority and Tradition which Christ gave to his Church. All of the Bishops were men, and their teaching authority and tradition (which in the Catholic Church is on the highest level BESIDE the Bible, also remember we had no Bible for hundreds of years after Christianity was founded) continued that practice.

Paul also spends about 95% of his writings in the Bible correcting, yelling at, and scolding MEN. He also calls men to love their wives as Christ loves his Church. In fact, the Church (which would be run by Bishops) is the BRIDE and Christ is the BRIDEGROOM. So in essence, Paul is telling the same if not more to men.

CHURCH FATHERS

While you cite a number of Church father's relating to sin, YOU ARE MISSING SOMETHING I POSTED IN THE OPENING ARGUMENT

The first, and GREATEST CHRISTIAN, was Mary. Mother of Jesus.

Let me list some more title she has

MOTHER OF GOD
QUEEN OF ANGELS
CRUSHER OF HERESEY
and

THE NEW EVE

Just as Christ is the new Adam, so is Mary the new Eve.

Please read on Mariology, which again is a very complex and intricate subject that delves deeply into the faith and scripture and we should refrain from it here.

The Church Fathers were also wild about Mary, and to keep things relevant, especially in the last century there has been a huge surge in Marian Devotions.

The Divine Chaplet of Mercy
The Writings of St. Faustina
JP2 making a new set of mysteries to the Rosary
and dozens of Saints, like Padre Pio and Mother Theresa saying things like, "No Mary, No Jesus. Know Mary, Know Christ"

In fact, Mary is considered to be ABOVE ALL POPES. She is directly below the God Head of the Trinity, and thus Marian Theology shows us that women are inherently better Christians and People than men are. This is the teaching of the church.

So PLEASE keep in mind that you are MISSSING A HUGE literary and rhetorical device when the Church Father's reference "Eve", as you clearly excluded their discussions on "Mary". You really are missing quite a bit of scripture and theology when you quote mine like that.

But that is why I am glad we are having this conversation, to clear up popular misconceptions, which you so usefully demonstrate for me.

MAJORITY OF WOMEN ARE CATHOLICS

Yes, because once again, they are inherently better Christians and People.

Furthermore, I personally know a number of women on Church budget committees, pastoral committees, charity committees, evangelization, education, and so on! I have personally seen women make decisions effecting Church life and function.

Who founded the institution in Calcutta that transformed so many lives? St. Mother Theresa! I mean I really cannot list enough female saints who founded orders and institutions of all sorts. Citing ONE strange law about the Vatican pales in comparison to the great and transparent contributions women make on a daily basis DESPITE not being able to function as priests.

Nuns vs Priests

Nuns, like their monk counterparts, have all of their needs taken for and they in fact, on their own free will, enter a life of poverty. Monks and brothers do the exact same thing, and not all priests are given the same salaries. You are TRULY mislead on the differences in monastic orders. Monastic orders are DIFFERENT than priestly orders. Each order operates differently, and generally speaking it is the same for men and women. All of this is done voluntarily I might add.

The Catholic Church does not kidnap women and make them be nuns.

http://www.religious-vocation.com...

POLITICS

So, while the world sees being opposed to birth control as oppression, we see it as preserving the natural femininity of females.

I cannot really say enough about this, and since this is not about specifically birth control, suffice it to say that the church is opposed to industries the secular world is fine with:

Killing Babies (abortion)
Stripping men and women of their natural abilities sexually speaking (birth control)
Objectifying women (sex trade, pornography, and prostitution)

I suggest listening to testimonies by people like Jane Breean or former porn starts who left mainstream/secular feminism to come to the Catholic Church, because they saw how greatly women are protected and honored.

CLOSING REMARKS

I hardly see how when the Pope says, "women are the most beautiful thing God has made" as misogynistic.

HOW IS THAT HATRED? How is saying the greatest Christians were women, discrimination AGAISNT women?

You have many misunderstandings of the faith, because you are of the world. But I hope to have you reconsider.
Oromagi

Con

PRO:"Misogyny is the hatred or dislike of women or girls. Catholicism does not hate women or girls."

CON:That is Pro"s thesis but there has been little evidence yet provided to support that position.

PRO: "You make a fallacy here in your next statement".Discrimination was not the definition, but merely one of many possible manifestations of misogyny."

CON: If discrimination is one possible manifestation of misogyny and discrimination against women can be discovered in Church policy, then at least some misogyny has been demonstrated. Where"s the fallacy?

PRO: "The church does not preach violence against women""

CON: January, 2016:

"The Roman Catholic Archbishop of Toledo, Braulio Rodriguez, told his congregation that wives could avoid being hit by doing what they are told. Women could also escape being physically abused by not asking their husbands for a divorce , Rodriguez said. He told churchgoers in his sermon: "The majority of cases of domestic violence happen because the woman"s partner does not accept them, or rejects them for not accepting their demands."[1]

PRO: "The sexual objectification of women happens a lot in the secular world though, through one of the largest and most profitable businesses in our world today: Pornography. Which is outright condemned by the Church

CON: In fact, Church policy condemns most sex and sexuality outside the precincts of connubial baby-making but pornography is not the only way to objectify a woman. When women are denied access to birth control, they are reduced to make-defined function. Men are encouraged to follow their callings while women are the machines that bear and raise the children of men.

When women say they are called to the priesthood and the Vatican refuses to acknowledge that calling, that is another kind of objectification: by the happenstance of gender, men carry on the dignity and responsibilities of the apostles but, quoting Aquinas, women are "defective and misbegotten."

PRO: "Treating things that are UNEQUAL as EQUAL is as unjust as treating EQUAL things UNEQUALLY. The role of women in the Church is not equal to men, nor is men's to women"

CON: I think we are finally getting some insight into PRO"s perspective here.

PRO: "Would you want to treat a fresh out of medical school surgeon the same as a seasoned veteran and specialist for a life or death decision?"

CON: So, by this analogy all men are the seasoned veterans and all women neophytes?

PRO: "You are obviously not well learned in scripture and Catholic teaching."

CON: Ad hominem.

PRO: "Genesis tells us that woman was made from man's SIDE. For your spouse is to walk next to you and beside you as an equal, not behind you or in front of you. Eve was not made from his FOOT or his nether regions or his head."

CON: You are paraphrasing Matthew Henry here, not Genesis. [2] Henry was a 19th century Puritan minister, not particularly feminist in outlook and decidedly anti-catholic.

PRO: Furthermore, God punishes man just as well as women by forcing him to labor and toil and die.

CON: Women are not exempt from toil or death, obviously. Eve and by her all women are subject to additional curses.

PRO: "Men also have submission"

CON: Yes, but again women have the greater burden:

"Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything." [3]

PRO: "All of the Bishops were men, and their teaching authority and tradition continued that practice."

CON:Yes, the exclusion of women from the bishopric is traditional but how does that support Pro"s case?

PRO: "Paul also spends about 95% of his writings in the Bible correcting, yelling at, and scolding MEN."

CON: Not surprising. Literacy in 1st century Anatolia was roughly 10% and very few women were taught to read. Common social restrictions discouraged Romans and Jews from interacting with woman very often. Although Paul likely spent more time in the company of women then the average man, he would not have perceived much dividend in addressing women in letters.

PRO: "The first, and GREATEST CHRISTIAN, was Mary. Mother of Jesus."

CON: An odd conception since Mary is generally thought to supersede Christianity, unencumbered by sin or death. The Catholic Church teaches that the church was founded the moment Jesus said "You are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church." Which would make Peter the first Christian and through whom all popes assert their primacy. Paul was the figure who truly defined Christianity. However, I doubt the apostles would have approved of ranking Christians hierarchically.

As Pro states, Mary is a complicated figure, a relatively spare portrait on which misogynists and feminists each paint fraught ideologies.

Many feminists point out that before Christianity, goddesses commanded men with autonomy (Dionysus, Cybele, Isis, etc.), but there is no discretely feminine power in the Trinity. As Simone de Beauvoir wrote:

"For the first time in history the mother kneels before her son; she freely accepts her inferiority. This is the supreme masculine victory, consummated in the cult of the Virgin " it is the rehabilitation of woman through the accomplishment of her defeat."

Irregardless, the veneration of Mary does not necessarily indicate a lack of misogyny. The veneration of Moses in Islam may suggest that Muslims should not be anti-semitic, but does that serve as proof that Muslim institutions are not anti-semitic?

PRO: " [Women] are inherently better Christians and People."

CON: A fairly sexist generalization.

PRO: "I have personally seen women make decisions effecting Church life and function".great and transparent contributions women make on a daily basis DESPITE not being able to function as priests."

CON: The fact is that women are excluded from positions of autonomous power. That women are also the more essential gender to Church continuity only makes their disenfranchisement more misogynist. Slaves were the lifeblood of early American cotton plantations, given every manner of responsibility in the function of that institution. Would we say then that those plantations were not inherently racist? Of course not, because blacks could not control their own destinies. Until women, as a majority of the Church, control their own destinies within that institution, the Church remains guilty of misogyny.

PRO: Nuns vs Priests

CON: We agree that monks and nuns submit to similar vows of poverty. The argument is that men may choose the more comfortable and exalted vocation of priesthood while women may not.

PRO: "The Catholic Church does not kidnap women and make them be nuns."

CON: No, and this is not question of civil rights. A church may order its membership as it sees fit. The question is whether that order reflects a misogynist outlook and the exclusion of women from the ranks of authority suggests that it is so.

PRO: So, while the world sees being opposed to birth control as oppression, we see it as preserving the natural femininity of females.

CON: Precisely my point. A woman who wishes to delay or abstain from motherhood is perceived as unnatural and unfeminine. Femininity is a quality essential to all of humanity"s missions of which baby-making is but a piece.

PRO: I hardly see how when the Pope says, "women are the most beautiful thing God has made" as misogynistic.

CON: People are not things. Beauty is subjective, superficial, and ephemeral.
A beautiful thing suggests no authority or autonomy that needs to be acknowledged. A beautiful thing is nonessential.

I look forward to Pro"s concluding remarks.

[1]http://churchandstate.org.uk...
[2]https://en.wikipedia.org...=
[3]https://www.biblega...
Debate Round No. 2
hutch976

Pro

You really are coming off as a charlatan.

"CON:That is Pro"s thesis but there has been little evidence yet provided to support that position."

No, that was not my thesis, it was a COUNTER to your point in R1. My thesis was this (which oddly enough is usually found near the start of someone's argument): "The church celebrates women, celebrates their femininity, celebrates their ability to bring life into a world of death, and in fact holds that the FIRST and perhaps GREATEST Christians in history were in fact, women! There is a biblical and historical foundation for all of these ideas."

You go on to say that since there is SOME discrimination against women, there must be some level of misogyny. No, this is a logical fallacy, I can tell you are going to have trouble on the LSAT. Further more, discrimination is not always a bad thing, as seen in the second entry of the definition I previously provided. It simply means you are able to see the difference in something.

An Analogy, we celebrate the beauty of the color white, and the color black by themselves, but we do not always need to make them exactly the same or mix them together to make gray.

I'm just going to generally sum up some of your points instead of being systematic, because debates are not about convincing the opponent, but getting your side out there for the audience.

So you say in the beginning that I provide no evidence for my thesis. Now that we have established that you cannot even find where my thesis is, and I have provided it, I will tell you that I did provide examples and evidence for it in everything I refuted and countered in R1.

While it is obvious that you can make a nice presentation, do research, and cite well...you really just cherry pick what you want. I mean that's what debating is though, in the competitive sense, but I can tell you really don't have a desire to see the other side. You cite a bishop. One bishop. Judas was a bishop, too.

Here let me do a quote mining experiment:

From Margaret Sanger, Planned Parenthood founder,

"[We should] apply a stern and rigid policy of sterilization and segregation to that grade of population whose progeny is tainted, or whose inheritance is such that objectionable traits may be transmitted to offspring."

^http://www.lifenews.com...

Well that must represent the whole view of the organization. Eugenics is great, how can anyone be opposed to it!

So now let's move onto the subject of pornography, which you countered clumsily by saying, "In fact, Church policy condemns most sex and sexuality outside the precincts of connubial baby-making but pornography is not the only way to objectify a woman. When women are denied access to birth control, they are reduced to make-defined function. Men are encouraged to follow their callings while women are the machines that bear and raise the children of men."

Let me correct you there...it's not MOST SEX and sexuality, it is ALL sex. Men and women are both called to celibate lives. And no, we are not confined to "baby-making", but rather challenged to practice self-denial, mutual love and respect, and not put pills in our body. You are seriously undercutting how Catholics view sex. Men are called to the same limits as women, thus totally destroying the discrimination aspect. But I did not see you mention that.

You are a skilled writer, you are only letting the audience see what you want them to.

Secondly, this does nothing to counter that the secular world, which you are in support of, has it's largest industries profit off of objectifying women, e.g. Pornography and advertisements. Go watch an hour of TV and tell if you DONT see something that objectifies women, sells sex, or spurs on racism.

Thirdly, I cannot be a priest either. It's a supernatural calling, and I'm not going to spell out the Sacraments of Vocation for you because this is not an RCIA class. If you really have interest you can start another debate, message me personally, attend an RCIA class, or bring this up on Catholic Answers.

No one is forced to do anything in the Catholic Church. The vast majority of Catholics are not clerical, and the vast majority of the lay people live lives contrary to all of the Church's teachings. This is what Jesus showed us from His ministry on Earth. He hung around tax collectors, prostitutes, poor people, sinners, etc. Any seriously practicing Catholic will tell you they fall short on some of the church's teachings, let's just say in the realm of sexuality, but they are not kicked out nor are they forced to go. Women can be CEO's of fortune 500 companies and be fully functioning members of the Catholic Church. They can have sex, or not. They can use NFP, or not. They can follow the rules or not. They aren't kicked out, nor forced to do anything by anyone.

Women are also able to follow their callings within the church, and women are capable of doing things that men are not.

So now onto your counter to my "medical student" analogy. You're misusing the analogy. It was simply meant to illustrate that there are CERTAIN circumstances where we treat unequal people (unequal in certain aspects) unequally, and that is not injustice.

You make ANOTHER LOGICAL FALLACY (covered up by decent rhetoric) by making it into a false analogy.

"Taken from the side, and you are not well learned..."

Actually, I was paraphrasing my girlfriend. I don't know who that guy is you quoted. But kudos for you for knowing that. I like how you totally did not address how that verse and story can be taken to mean something other than you clumsily showed it to me. Once again, letting the audience see what you want it to and ignoring any detractors.

Here is another example: "An odd conception since Mary is generally thought to supersede Christianity, unencumbered by sin or death. The Catholic Church teaches that the church was founded the moment Jesus said "You are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church." Which would make Peter the first Christian and through whom all popes assert their primacy. Paul was the figure who truly defined Christianity. However, I doubt the apostles would have approved of ranking Christians hierarchically."

That is when the church was founded (or at Pentecost when they received more Holy Orders), but Christianity started with Christ's resurrection. And who were the first believers? Women. Who doubted? Men.

Paul is NOT the figure who defined Christianity.

And the Church totally does have a hierarchy and ranks Christians. Why do you think we have Papal Primacy, Canonization, the God Head, choirs of angels, levels in heaven, etc.

So yes, you are not well versed in actual Catholic teaching. Sorry if it bad rhetoric for me to point our when you quote mine, say objectively false things, and play fast and loose with history.

"As Pro states, Mary is a complicated figure, a relatively spare portrait on which misogynists and feminists each paint fraught ideologies"

Never said that, but thanks for making something up. Seriously, you are just putting words in my mouth at this point. Desperate much?
PRO: " [Women] are inherently better Christians and People."

CON: A fairly sexist generalization.

^If it is, it certainly is not misogynistic.

"CON: People are not things. Beauty is subjective, superficial, and ephemeral."

Well, if you look at how we view God, everything in the physical universe is a thing. God is "Ipsum Esse" and outside of "thing"-dom for lack of a better word. He has no genus or classification. He is the uncaused caused. We are in the genus "human" if you will, but God is not. So what the Pope is saying, is that women are the most beautiful of all creation, i.e. out of everything in the world.

We have different perspectives. Out of space.
Oromagi

Con

PRO: "You go on to say that since there is SOME discrimination against women, there must be some level of misogyny."

CON: Correct

PRO:[Analogy of black & white]

CON: White is a mixture of all the colors on the visible spectrum and by refraction can project any hue, black is the absence of light and cannot change. White has options, black does not. Or extended a different way: imagine any book, or painting, or film composed of only undifferentiated white or black, how dull and uninspiring would such work be!

PRO: "You cite a bishop. One bishop. Judas was a bishop, too."

CON: Pro offered an absolute: "The Church does not preach violence against women."
Con offered a recent example of a high-ranking member of the Church (The Archbishop of Toledo) preaching violence against women from the pulpit during mass. A single exception is all that"s necessary to refute an absolute. A more accurate statement might be that the Church seldom preaches violence against women anymore.

PRO: Quoting Margaret Sanger, etc.

CON: A potentially useful quote in a debate about Planned Parenthood. Readers will note that Con raised abortion as one example by which the Church is demonstrably out of sync with the mainstream ideology of that institution"s female constituency. No defense of abortion is required in support of Con"s argument or need be inferred.

PRO: Men are called to the same limits as women, thus totally destroying the discrimination aspect. But I did not see you mention that.

CON: Con did note the disparity in excommunications for pedophile priests vs. feminist activists. That is, talking about sexual liberation for women is greater cause for punishment than outright rape by men: a fairly glaring example of gender discrimination.

PRO: "meant to illustrate that there are CERTAIN circumstances where we treat unequal people (unequal in certain aspects) unequally"

CON: Pro affirms that women are treated unequally within the Church.

PRO: "Actually, I was paraphrasing my girlfriend. I don't know who that guy is you quoted."

CON: Originally, Pro cited Genesis. Ouch.

PRO: "... but Christianity started with Christ's resurrection."

CON: From the official Catechism of the Catholic Church:

"Lord made Simon alone, whom he named Peter, the "rock" of his Church. He gave him the keys of his Church and instituted him shepherd of the whole flock" This pastoral office of Peter and the other apostles belongs to the Church's very foundation...." [1]

No women are mentioned.

PRO: Paul is NOT the figure who defined Christianity.

CON: The Encyclopedia Britannica describes Paul as: "often considered to be the second most important person in the history of Christianity." [after Christ] [2]

PRO: "Never said that, but thanks for making something up."

CON: Pro stated, "Please read on Mariology, which again is a very complex and intricate subject." Pro echoed the sentiment, "As Pro states, Mary is a complicated figure."

PRO: " [Women] are inherently better Christians and People." [is not misogynistic.]

CON: Yes it is, by lumping women into some different ideal than men, by placing women on a special pedestal, women are objectified, unlike other Christians and people.

SUMMATION

As stated in the first round, Pro"s contention that the Catholic Church is the opposite of misogynistic was and remains rather fuzzy. Con suggested that the term feminist might serve, but Pro has neither accepted or refuted that offering.

Pro"s main argument seems to be that feminist critique must be in error because the Church celebrates women, but celebration of some group of people does not preclude bigotry against the same. Maine Governor Paul LePage celebrates Martin Luther King"s birthday but is nevertheless demonstrably racist in his public remarks. The NFL enthusiastically promotes breast cancer awareness but its players have an appalling record of domestic violence against women.

Pro has also argued that some of the first and greatest Christians were women, which is indisputably true. Again, that fact does not preclude the possibility of bigotry any more than did the fact that the first Christians were Jewish preclude spectacular acts of anti-semitism throughout history.

Pro points to the Catholic adoration of Mary as proof against misogyny but this hardly definitive as many misogynist cultures have worshipped female divinities. The Roman Republic worshipped many female deities and the Virgins of Vesta were deemed supremely sacred, but the Romans were markedly misogynistic.

Prominent Sister Simone Campbell said of Pope Francis in an interview today:

""One thing I find rather annoying is that [Francis] doesn"t see us as "Eve-temptress," but more like Mary. That"s putting women on a pedestal. That"s as confining a cage." [3]

In the absence of a framework establishing the opposite of misogyny, Con provided a definition
that noted sexual discrimination, hostility, male supremacist ideas, belittling of women, violence against women, and sexual objectification of women as some examples of misogyny. Con argued that if the Church could be shown to exhibit some of these habits, then the Church could not be properly characterized as "the opposite of misogynistic" and Pro"s case proven false.

Con offered traditional Church doctrine that inculpated and subordinated women for original sin. The cited doctrines were not specifically refuted, but Pro suggests the quotes were taken out of context insofar as God also punished men and that Paul also encouraged men to love their wives. But the burdens of guilt and submission were clearly unequal and more onerous on women.

Con argued that the absence of women in the Vatican and ordained vocations constitutes discrimination. Pro agreed that men and women had unequal roles, but argued that women were not less important, only different. Pro applies several analogies- doctors vs. interns, child-raising, etc that don"t improve Pro"s case. Con maintains that if the positions of authority, autonomy, and even luxury are exclusively reserved for men, women are clearly afforded the less important role and discrimination demonstrated. Some men are promoted to positions where they can live in castles and wear velvet slippers at Church expense, no women are permitted such aspirations.

Con also argued that Church politics are out of sync with women"s issues even to the point of harming the Church"s continuity. Pro defended Church policy at length as a protection of natural femininity but neither refuted the point nor demonstrated policies that reflect women"s values (there are certainly some).

Con pointed to Pope Francis" remarks as an example of objectification, but really all these points contain some element- the focus on women as virgins and mothers and temptresses, the predominance of nuns in teaching and nursing, etc. Pro argued that the Church is anti-pornography and that pornography is the worst kind of female objectification. But opposing one type of objectification (particularly within the context of non prescribed sex) does not refute all objectification. In any case, Pro is not buying Con"s definition, so we"ll have to leave that up to readers.

To the extent that evidence of some misogyny has been shown, Pro"s contention that the Catholic Church is the opposite of misogynist must be false -not necessarily irredeemable, certainly better than the past, but also certainly misogynist to some degree.

Lastly, Con would ask readers to consider Pro"s reliance on ad hominem and the continuation of arguments in notes when evaluating conduct.

Thanks again to Pro for instigating this debate and thanks in advance to readers for voting. Please vote Con.

[1] http://www.vatican.va...
[2]http://www.britannica.com...
[3]https://www.washingtonpost.com...
Debate Round No. 3
13 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Ragnar 1 year ago
Ragnar
Note: Typo in my RFD, "Pro points out every predictable..." should have said "Con points out every predictable..."

@dsjpk5
I actually agree with you, but pro decided to take on the duty of proving the church to be outright anti-misogyny. Not the same thing as just not hating women.

@hutch976
I am opposed to abuses of the comment section, but if con outright lied about something you said (with quotation marks), not merely using your actual words against you, please PM me the examples.
Either way I suggest trying this debate again, with a better setup, and better defined scope (plus clear definitions in R1). And I advise against complaining when your opponent cherry picks their facts, instead of doing your work for you; in a normal conversation it'd be lame of them, on a research paper it would be dubious, but in a debate it's proper protocol.
Posted by dsjpk5 1 year ago
dsjpk5
I have to agree that Con has cleverly massaged the facts to make his/her case. The Church is in no way misogynist. As Pro so expertly said, men and women being different doesn't make them unequal.
Posted by hutch976 1 year ago
hutch976
Just remember though, what God started in you He will finish. I'll keep you in my prayers going forward, and ask my Catholic Community to do the same, as we do for all of our lapsed brothers and sisters.
Posted by hutch976 1 year ago
hutch976
That's great about your credentials, but you still misrepresent the church's teachings. You seem to believe the world's definition of what things are and should be. Kenneth Lay and Jeffrey Skilling graduated from top notch business schools and claimed they couldn't read a spread sheet during the Enron scandal.

And I'm not sure how straight up putting words in my mouth and misquoting me counts as good conduct. I took that as an insult, and returned the favor. But it's no hard feelings.

We have different perspectives, you're a skilled debater, but you never proved that the Church hates, or preaches hate (as a unified doctrine), upon women. It's really a matter of perspective, I guess. Some people think abortion is not murder. I suppose legally it is not (at least now), according to the world it is not (unless the baby was intentional, then its a baby and not a fetus), but it is ending the life of a human being. Fanciful lawyers and very smart people dance skillfully around that for a living, it doesn't make it true or not.

I'm in the Church, you're now outside of it. I'm telling you I've never seen misogyny. In all your experiences, and with all your nun examples, have you ever walked up to one and asked why they are such victims? What do they tell you?
Posted by Ragnar 1 year ago
Ragnar
---RFD---
Conduct: Pro hurt this by opening R3 with an off topic insult, lying about the content of his own R1 (pretty brief opening, hard for it to hold his talk of Mary as claimed), etc. However he caught himself when he was complaining that con didn't argue his points for him, which is a large enough sign of good faith and improvement that I am opting to not penalize.

S&G: Con should disable smart quotes, and pro should get control of his caps lock. About even.

Arguments: Pro's case failing boils down to "discrimination is not always a bad thing," and that an archbishop's encouragement of violence against women is irrelevant to a discussion of how anti-Misogynistic the church is. Plus he seemed somewhat against Misogyny being defined (which hurts his case more than con's, as he has the primary duty of BoP). Pro points out every predictable bit (denial of reproductive medicine and linked poverty, the multiple priest fiascos, the pope's accidental sexist joke, an archbishop encouraging violence against women, the church objectifying women in comparable ways to porn, etc.). Pretty much after con's arguments, to win this pro would have had to prove that violence against women is an act of love instead of hate (or that they properly punished said archbishop for going so far against their teachings).

Sources: Con dominated in this area (edu sites, interview with the pope, that archbishop one takes the cake...), but otherwise a little predictable (nothing wrong with that, it just doesn't have points and counterpoints for review). Pro offered one to support that nuns are not kidnapped and brainwashed, and generally insulted con's (drawing more attention to them, without adequately refuting them).
Posted by Oromagi 1 year ago
Oromagi
I'm generally opposed to continuing arguments in commentary (and I won't start now). But hutch has posted some assumptions about my character that speak to my authority on the subject matter, so I'd like to submit my meager credentials as pertain to the Catholic community. I received the sacraments of Baptism, Communion, and confirmation as a member of Sacred Heart Church, the oldest Catholic Church in Maryland, home of the first US archbishop and the place where American Catholicism was first organized after the Revolution. I received my Cathecism under the Jesuits there. I have discussed the bible in many study groups, church retreats, and seminars. In college, I studied the bible from the perspectives of literature, history, and mythology. I prefer the poetry of the King James Version, but my personal bible is RSV. I served as a Reader at liturgy for years and sometimes as usher. I've attended mass in many cities including St Patrick's in NYC, the Basillica in DC, La Villa de Guadalupe, and Christ Church in Dublin and I've been blessed by JP2. I do not consider myself a Catholic today or even religious, although I do attend Church sometimes and participate in Catholic charities. Nevertheless, I don't think it can be fairly said that I don't know what the Catholic Church looks like from the inside.
Posted by hutch976 1 year ago
hutch976
Also, I will confess some slight gender bias in my previous post. I have no idea the gender of my opponent, but I used the masculine morphemes a few times, apologies if you are not a male. Your gender does not matter, I am a victim and perpetrator of English language gender bias.
Posted by hutch976 1 year ago
hutch976
So my opponent is very skilled at rhetoric and at competitive debating, but a close look at what my opponent is doing illustrates the difference between talking about the truth, and being a good debater.

You'll notice how my opponent misquotes me, and even flat out puts words in my mouth.
You'll notice how my opponent falsely identifies my thesis, as a counter to my pointing out the flaw in his definition of "misogyny" and the application thereof.
You'll noticed skilled quote mining (probably the best I've seen) and a very skewed view on Catholic doctrine and practice.

I'm not sure if the obvious cheap tactics are malicious or oversights, but they are obvious when you look at them. My opponent acts like a high paid defense attorney, a mercenary of words.

As I stated previously, you cannot fully understand what the faith is unless you live it or seriously give it an academic study. I can sit here and tell you all day what the military is and is not for example, but you'll never truly know unless you experience it and everything it entails. So to fully counter every single of my opponent's points is outside the scope of this argument, as it would require a full understanding of our faith as not being misogynistic, but very pro-woman. And I cannot provide that in an internet text box sadly.

Perhaps by the world's view we are misogynistic, but the world has thought us crazy since we first came on the scene. What with the Jew's ONE God vs. many and all. The Church always allows people to come and go, and forces its beliefs upon no one. If you fully understand our faith, you would understand why things are how they are, and nothing is stopping you from pursuing any career or family or non-family. We won't stop loving you.

The world thinks killing babies is not murder, and that pornography is liberating. Go figure.
Posted by hutch976 1 year ago
hutch976
I would like to make a point to all readers of this, and to anyone who is going to cite from anywhere.

When non-Christians cite the Bible, or more specifically, when non-Catholics cite particular Catholic texts, be sure you know the full context. If you are quoting from an Early Church Father, read the whole book he is being quoted from. If you are quoting from the Bible, read the whole chapter at least.

Or else you run the same risk a modern suburbanite privileged white boy when he gives a cursory read to "The Invisible Man" or "A Raisin in the Sun".

I would not dare to quote mine the Quran and throw it in a Muslim's face, because well, I don't really know what I'm talking about because all I really know about Islam is what I've learned through other people, not living it or delving into a serious academic pursuit.

You can see my opponent's nearly limitless misconceptions. The Catholic Church can be compared to a stained glass window inside a cathedral. On the outside, you can't really make out what it truly is, or how it is MEANT to be seen. Only when you go inside do you realize how it is meant to be seen and understood, and you won't believe your eyes.
Posted by Phenenas 1 year ago
Phenenas
@hutch976 I could debate you on that, and it would be very easy for me, too. But someone's already accepted. Good luck, Con!
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Ragnar 1 year ago
Ragnar
hutch976OromagiTied
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Total points awarded:05 
Reasons for voting decision: RFD in comments.