FFRF: New Vatican document denies human dignity

The vatican building on a clear sunny day

The Freedom From Religion Foundation is calling out the Vatican for its latest harmful statements against LGBTQIA-plus communities and women.

In the newly released “Declaration ‘Dignitas Infinita’ on Human Dignity,” the Vatican has once again made clear its utter disregard for science and lived experience. Written over a five-year period and approved by Pope Francis, this new document makes sweeping statements calling gender-affirming care, abortion and surrogacy “grave violations of human dignity” on par with poverty, war, genocide, sexual abuse, human trafficking and eugenics.

“This document being issued at a time where transgender and reproductive rights are increasingly under attack represents a massive political threat to secular democracy,” warns FFRF Equal Justice Works Fellow Kat Grant. “There is no doubt that the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops will use this document to further fuel its political attacks on women and LGBTQIA-plus communities.”

Although the document ostensibly denounces violence against LGBTQIA-plus individuals, it fails to recognize the harm and violence they face as a result of exactly this kind of rhetoric. Hate crimes against LGBTQIA-plus students in states where anti-trans laws have passed have quadrupled in recent years, in large part due to the public discourse demonizing transgender people trickling down to school-aged children. Such legislation is creating gender refugees who are moving to states without punitive legislation interfering with family decision-making. Already, 21 U.S. states ban or nearly ban abortion care — creating chaos, stress and inequity for many Americans dealing with unwanted pregnancies, even imperiling their health or lives. Calling gender-affirming and reproductive care “grave violations of human dignity” only heightens the risk of violence for people who seek out this care, their families, and their medical service providers.

“Once again, the Vatican seeks to legislate and impose its dangerous Catholic doctrines, which ignore medical science and oppose bodily autonomy,” says FFRF Co-President Annie Laurie Gaylor. “Health care decisions belong solely to individuals, their families and their doctors — not priests.”

The Freedom From Religion Foundation is a national nonprofit organization with more than 40,000 members across the country. FFRF protects the constitutional separation between state and church and educates about nontheism.

Freedom From Religion Foundation

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