Title: AIDS and Catholicism: an immoral limit to the material right of the many for the ethereal good of the few

Authors: Jose Serralvo

Addresses: Georgetown University Law Center, 600 New Jersey Ave. NW, Washington, District of Columbia 20001, USA

Abstract: Following Saint Augustine|s views on contraception, the Catholic Church continues to condemn the use of prophylactics. Despite the protests of bishops and Catholic communities around the world who see prophylactics as an ally in the fight against the AIDS pandemics in Sub-Saharan Africa, the Vatican has refused to soften its stance. This paper outlines the Vatican|s responsibility on the issue under International Human Rights Law, in particular the right to health. It analyses how the societal elements of religious morality may hamper the effective enjoyment of such rights, and the way any discursive approach within a community may coerce the free will of the individual and make AIDS prevention policies more difficult.

Keywords: AIDS; acquired immune deficiency syndrome; Catholicism; religion; human rights; health; contraception; sexual behaviour; prevention policies; preventive medicine; Catholic Church; morals; HIV; human immunodeficiency virus; immoral limits; material rights; immorality; ethereal good; Saint Augustine; bishops; Catholic communities; clergy; pandemics; Sub-Saharan Africa; Vatican; Popes; prophylactics; Pope Benedict XVI; condoms; international law; Catholic responsibility; societal elements; religious morality; effective enjoyment; free will; individuals; discursive approaches; public law; public policy.

DOI: 10.1504/IJPLAP.2011.041893

International Journal of Public Law and Policy, 2011 Vol.1 No.1, pp.117 - 126

Received: 08 May 2021
Accepted: 12 May 2021

Published online: 15 Aug 2011 *

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