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Pope calls couples who choose pets over having children ‘selfish’


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https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/jan/05/pope-couples-choose-pets-children-selfish

Choosing pets over babies is ‘selfish and diminishes us’, says pope

Pontiff laments ‘denied parenthood’ and people who ‘substitute cats and dogs for children’

Harriet Sherwood and agencies

@harrietsherwood

Wed 5 Jan 2022 12.57 EST

In a move likely to raise the hackles of millions of cats, dogs and their human cohabitees, Pope Francis has suggested that couples who prefer pets to children are selfish.

Wading into a debate noted for its toxic tone on social media, the leader of the world’s 1.3 billion Catholics said substituting pets for children “takes away our humanity”.

During a general audience at the Vatican, he said: “Today … we see a form of selfishness. We see that some people do not want to have a child. Sometimes they have one, and that’s it, but they have dogs and cats that take the place of children. This may make people laugh but it is a reality.”

Pet keeping was “a denial of fatherhood and motherhood and diminishes us, takes away our humanity”, he said. The consequence was that “civilisation grows old without humanity because we lose the richness of fatherhood and motherhood, and it is the country that suffers”.

While saying couples unable to have children for biological reasons could consider adoption, he urged potential parents “not to be afraid” of embarking on parenthood. “Having a child is always a risk, but there is more risk in not having a child,” he said.

“Crazy cat ladies” and couples with “fur babies” are frequently trolled on social media. The former are depicted as lonely, unloved women, and the latter as self-centred narcissists or careerists for whom babies and children are inconvenient.

But there are concerns about the falling birth rate in developed countries. According to the US Census Bureau the proportion of households made up of married couples with children fell from 40% in 1970 to 20% in 2012. But seven in 10 households included a pet.

During the Covid-19 pandemic there has been a further marked fall in the birth rate. In Italy 22% fewer babies were born in December 2020 than in the same month a year earlier. In Spain the drop was 20%, and in France 13%.

“I feel like I would be giving up a lot of my life to be a parent,” Lisa Rochow of Ypsilanti, Michigan, told the BBC in 2019. “That would cost money, that would cost time, that would cost things that you want to do.” Instead, she and her partner, both in their 20s, had welcomed a Siberian Husky puppy into their lives. Some couples opt to be childless out of environmental or financial concerns.

Francis, who has previously denounced the “demographic winter”, or falling birthrates in the developed world, is not known to have a pet at his Vatican residence. But he has been photographed stroking dogs. He allowed a baby lamb to be draped over his shoulders during Epiphany in 2014 and has petted a tiger and panther cub.

In 2014 Francis told Il Messaggero newspaper that having pets instead of children was “another phenomenon of cultural degradation”, and that emotional relationships with pets was easier than the “complex” relationship between parents and children.

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6 hours ago, Gaudet said:

Selfish, to say the least, is what the Catholic Church's mafia of clergy pedos have done to countless vulnerable children for decades. 

 

Exactly. They should look at their record involving child abuse before critiquing anyone for loving their pets. 
  
Popes and religious leaders of all faiths should stop their pathetic lecturing of how people should conduct their own personal choices regarding having children. 

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OMG, fuck off old man.

I don't understand how in this day and age where everyone is so sensitive about everything

The Vatican still gets a pass. Someone needs to cancel those frustrated hate bearers.

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Oh please. The Catholic Church are the very LAST folks who should be talking about the concern for children. They're just pissed that more and more folks generationally are not interested in the Christian model of the nuclear family.

Then, there's like over 8 billion people on the planet...more than what the planet can actually provide for (and whose remaining resources are pretty much the basis for all on-going world conflict). Then there's the issue of what we are doing to this planet, and where it's going (politically/climate change/etc.). The last thing this planet needs is more children, particularly those being had just for the sake of it.

I understand why people who truly want children may want one that's actually biologically from them, but I've always found it incredibly hypocritical that we put all this massive focus on pushing for animal adoption...but that same sentiment is never given to human life. Why not take that sentiment and put it towards pushing humanity, particularly straight people, to actually care for all the children unwanted and cast aside.

Then there's the issue that so many can't actually afford to raise children.

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:lmao:

I dare that fucker to come spend time with my fur baby and tend to all her demands and tell me I'm selfish! I feel a human child would be easier sometimes 😂

 

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4 hours ago, Jazzy Jan said:

Exactly. They should look at their record involving child abuse before critiquing anyone for loving their pets. 
  
Popes and religious leaders of all faiths should stop their pathetic lecturing of how people should conduct their own personal choices regarding having children. 

Sadly, for as long as certain people give them the importance they don't deserve, religious leaders will continue to lecture people on how to live their miserable lives.

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3 hours ago, VogueMusic said:

Oh please. The Catholic Church are the very LAST folks who should be talking about the concern for children. They're just pissed that more and more folks generationally are not interested in the Christian model of the nuclear family.

Then, there's like over 8 billion people on the planet...more than what the planet can actually provide for (and whose remaining resources are pretty much the basis for all on-going world conflict). Then there's the issue of what we are doing to this planet, and where it's going (politically/climate change/etc.). The last thing this planet needs is more children, particularly those being had just for the sake of it.

I understand why people who truly want children may want one that's actually biologically from them, but I've always found it incredibly hypocritical that we put all this massive focus on pushing for animal adoption...but that same sentiment is never given to human life. Why not take that sentiment and put it towards pushing humanity, particularly straight people, to actually care for all the children unwanted and cast aside.

Then there's the issue that so many can't actually afford to raise children.

This.

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WHAT. EVER. 

Do they really think they can shame people into having more children with this nonsense? The church just wants more people that it can indoctrinate and get money from.


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  • 3 weeks later...

A woman at my work agreed with the Pope :lmao:  She was saying that dogs and cats are mere animals and should not ever be considered family or be inside a house. Then ranted about selfish couples too busy to welcome children.  I told her that I would bring my dog into work to win her over 😄 I bet he would too as he is a real smoocher and loves everyone. 

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