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Monday, June 20, 2005

Looking with one eye shut

Dominic Emmanuel, a Catholic priest from the Delhi Catholic Archdiocese together with the omnipresent Samaritan, Mahesh Bhatt, is leading the efforts to make a Bollywood style movie on HIV/AIDS. The main motto of this movie 'Aisa Kyon Hota Hain', full with song and dance flicks, is to communicate to masses that "The best way to evade AIDS is by avoiding promiscuous relationships". The movie doesn't ever mention the word "condom"!!!!!!!!!!!!

I mean, yeah, it surely is possible to explain cricket without mentioning bats or balls, isn't it? It's also possible to explain a car to someone without mentioning wheels!!! The Catholic Church has long opposed condoms, but for the higher cause of saving human lives, couldn't it have for once lived with some humility? If at all the message in the movie has some effect, it will be on simple, untrained and illiterate minds. Isn’t it a good enough deed to give a whole and true picture to such an audience who rely on others for knowledge? The effects of such one eyed view's can be very dangerous. Several leaders like George Bush, Thabo Mbeki and our own Sushma Swaraj have been reluctant to fund programmes that help spread condoms.

Incidentally, this month in Italy, a referendum to make fertility treatments more accessible failed after the church, together with the new pope, asked people to abstain. How can such institutions, mainly made up of people who had never experienced parenthood, dictate rules for those unlucky couples who go through the most excruciating experience of having difficulties in having a child? Also it’s only the poor couples who are most affected because of this, since the richer ones can afford to go to more liberal countries and conceive there. So, shouldn't cricket commentators stay out of seismology? And shouldn't gynecologists stay out of brain surgery? Some people are looking with their one eye shut. I am not sure if the other eye is open either.

<>P.S. I thought that this cartoon by the Pulitzer winning Anne Telnaes was the most appropriate for this post.


Charukesi said...

great post. The catholic church has caused enough damage in Africa and it is time they changed their eyes-wide-shut policy - why don't they just go out and preach total abstinece - might be simpler to convince people :)
as for the film, i am sure it is about promiscuoos emotional relationships, forget condom, am sure the word sex has also not been mentoined anywhere - after all, the censors might object.

Charukesi said...

by the way, am linking to this post on my blog - I keep writing about the AIDS situation in India.