ROME, January 14, 2013 ( – Children are being used as bargaining chips in a global struggle between two radically opposed theories of human nature, a leading Catholic bioethicist said this weekend in the Vatican’s newspaper L’Osservatore Romano. Adriano Pessina, director of bioethics at the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart, wrote in response to a court ruling on Friday that concerns over harms to children raised in homosexual partnerships are based on “mere prejudice”.

“Not only for biological reasons,” Pessina wrote, “the monogamous family is the ideal place where you must learn the meaning of human relationships.”

The social crisis building over the broad acceptance of homosexuality is related to the fact that “people with a homosexual orientation want to build a pair bond more and more similar to the family, claiming a right to adopt children.”

But there is no such right, “even for heterosexual couples,” he said. “Children are not objects or instruments of production, they are people.”

The article appeared as a response to the decision of the Italian Court of Cassation, that custody of a child can be given to the mother, even if she lives in a sexual relationship with another woman. The court ruled on Friday against the complaint of a Muslim man living in Brescia that his child was being harmed because the mother was living in a same-sex relationship.

The court said that the father’s opposition to the homosexual lifestyle was not based on “scientific certainty or experience-based data,” and the belief that it harms children is “mere prejudice”.

Pessina countered that the court erred in fundamental logic. While it is possible for children raised in less than ideal circumstances – in polygamous families, in orphanages or even raised by a single parent – “can develop in a balanced way,” it does not follow that society should start to legitimise those circumstances.

“No one would argue that you should create these situations just because in some cases they don’t create damage,” he wrote.

The real issue, he said, is a matter of “anthropology,” or a fundamental question of the nature of human beings. The problem is that the theory and practice of homosexuality “is that it tends to deny, in the name of an orientation, the value and importance of the difference between the male and the female.”
Moreover, the growing acceptance of homosexuality is likewise based on a false premise, one found at the root of post-feminist “gender” ideology. “In the debate on homosexuality is a tendency to deny that there is a difference between male and female.”

But, he said, “Human identity is not determined by the orientation itself, because the human condition is always polar, male and female. A difference that has concrete features, not only mental or social roles.”

Gender ideologues claim to be “indifferent being male or female” and say it is “therefore irrelevant whether a couple is formed by a man and a woman or two women or two men”. But the differences between male and the female, he said, are an inextricable aspect of the definition of the human condition.

Italian politicians and homosexual activists, however, focused on the dominant script of “rights” and “equality” for adults, are passing over concerns raised by Catholic leaders that children have a right to be raised in a family based on natural marriage.

“This is a historic ruling, giving the future government a formidable assistance to finally legislate in favor of same-sex marriage and full equality for all families,” said Flavio Romani, president of the leading Italian homosexualist group Arcigay. “The Cassation Court today reaffirmed what we’ve been saying for a long time. Love is what makes children grow, and not the sexual orientation of their parents.”

Former Veneto governor and minister Giancarlo Galan, called the ruling “a significant step forward for civil rights in our country.”

Democratic Party (PD) Senator Ignazio Marino said, “We should stop looking at such important matters as civil rights through a 19th-century lens.”

“I believe people who love one another should have the same rights, no matter their sexual orientation. The ability to raise a child is not the exclusive prerogative of heterosexual couples. This has been scientifically confirmed.”

It’s not the first time the Vatican has stated its opposition to homosexual parenting. In 2005, the head of the Vatican’s Pontifical Council for the Family commented on homosexual adoption calling it “an act of moral violence against the child.”


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