To whom it may concern:
I am very sorry to bother you about a subject you no doubt consider settled. But there is some dispute among commentators concerning the proper interpretation of the letter on vaccine usage, regarding conscientious objectors such as myself.Some have even gone so far as to say vaccines are a non-issue for pro-lifers, even in the light of the document.
Does the document approve of conscientious objection by parents in the US? My reading of it is that one must consider the issue carefully, and that particulars of individual or public health *may* necessitate “tainted” vaccines in certain cases (such as parts of the world where diseases like Rubella are epidemic.In the US, where there is adequate health care to treat symptoms of diseases, many vaccines (flu, chicken pox) seem more oriented towards keeping kids in school and perpetuating a culture of “living to work.”Some have said that those of us who refuse to use vaccines are morally culpable for the spread of infection.That does not seem to me to be an accurate reading of the document: am I right or wrong?
Secondly, the CNS article implies a moral obligation to “prevent malformity”. I found this personally hurtful, as I have a genetic disorder, and I have often been told–usually by non-Catholics and secularists–that I am “cruel” to have children.I believe in being open to life. I believe that a life lived with pain or disability is still worth living, and has benefits that a “healthy person” does not experience.I would certanily welcome an ethical cure for my condition, but I do not believe that it’s wrong for me to have children: quite the opposite.
If you could please comment on these matters, it would be greatly appreciated. My Catholicism and my pro-life position are fundamentally important to me, yet the commentators in question have attacked what I consider to be two important aspects of being a committed pro-lifer: a) never benefitting from immoral medical research and b) being open to life, no matter how “malformed.”
Sincerely,John C. Hathaway198 Farrell Ln.Fredericksburg, VA 22401