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Humanae Vitae: Day 22

Promotion of Chastity

22. We take this opportunity to address those who are engaged in education and all those whose right and duty it is to provide for the common good of human society. We would call their attention to the need to create an atmosphere favorable to the growth of chastity so that true liberty may prevail over license and the norms of the moral law may be fully safeguarded.

Everything therefore in the modern means of social communication which arouses men’s baser passions and encourages low moral standards, as well as every obscenity in the written word and every form of indecency on the stage and screen, should be condemned publicly and unanimously by all those who have at heart the advance of civilization and the safeguarding of the outstanding values of the human spirit. It is quite absurd to defend this kind of depravity in the name of art or culture (See Inter Mirifica, nn. 6-7) or by pleading the liberty which may be allowed in this field by the public authorities.

True liberty vs. license: We are led to believe by the culture that freedom means the ability to do whatever we want (license).  The reality is that true liberty lies in the freedom to do what is right and good.  That is to say, freedom is a gift given to us, and it is good for us (even human for us) to use that gift of freedom to do what is right and just.

In this paragraph, Paul VI calls on all who want the world to thrive and civilization to advance to condemn things such as pornography and all other indecent forms of entertainment because these things (which are not “artistic” and destroy the gift of true freedom) serve to degrade the human soul.

(Posted with permission from Fr. Lee Acervo at http://fatheracervo.wordpress.com)