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Thread: Should secularists boycott Trocaire?

  1. #1
    Politics.ie Member the_Observer's Avatar
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    Default Should secularists boycott Trocaire?

    William Oddie writing in the Catholic Herald urges roman catholics to boycott red nose day because "though they may do some good work, [they] also support what are to Catholics morally objectionable actions and beliefs". So what are these objectionable actions and beliefs? Oddie gives us an example : The African Women’s Development fund (AWDF) which is committed to “Freedom of choice and autonomy regarding bodily integrity issues, including reproductive rights, abortion, sexual identity and sexual orientation”.

    Oddie concludes his article with :
    The simple fact is that, in John Smeaton’s words, “there is only one response to Red Nose Day. Abortion hurts women and kills unborn children and Red Nose Day funds organisations which promote it. Boycott it.”
    Although stupid, the article does (accidentally) raise an interesting point : If charitable donations are used to fund objectionable practices, why donate? Should a roman catholic donate to the red nose day campaign when they can instead donate to a catholic charity like Trocaire? Why should non roman catholics donate to Trocaire when Trocaire very explicitly promotes catholic policies among starving overpopulated communities? That means little to no sex education, no contraceptives and absolutely no abortion.

    Just to explain: Around this time of year, it's common to see Trocaire boxes perched on Irish kitchen tables or living room mantelpieces. My parents house has one and my workplace has one.

    The deal is this : to celebrate the fully-divine-yet-somehow-fully-a-man Jesus pottering around a desert for 40 days and 40 nights Christians undergo a period called Lent consisting of self-denial and fasting. Even some secularists see this cultural habit as an opportunity to practice self-denial and rid themselves of a vice or two and 'detox' for 40 days. The money saved goes into the Trocaire box and handed into the local church at the end of lent and the money is used by the Trocaire charity to make a world a better place.

    Only there's a catch.

    Trocaire is first and foremost a Roman Catholic organization. They proudly declare the fact on their web page :
    Trócaire is the official overseas development agency of the Catholic Church in Ireland. It was set up by the Irish Catholic Bishops in 1973 to express the concern of the Irish Church for the suffering of the world's poorest and most oppressed people.

    Trócaire’s partnership approach makes us different. We work through global Catholic networks and with local partners on the ground. When we help people, we work with them, so that they drive the entire process themselves. Solutions are not imposed on the people we help. Instead, they become the authors of their own destiny.
    I am deeply suspicious of catholic charity organizations. Yes, they alleviate some suffering but roman catholic aid centers morph into churches, catholic schools, catholic hospitals, catholic dominated councils and very quickly the state is colonized by the catholic church. Christian charity was always a means of evangelizing by tossing table scraps to the poor while doing little to improve their long term situation. Trocaire commits, to use the words of Oddie, "morally objectionable actions and beliefs" through their refusal to provide birth control and by their promotion of catholicism.

    The Trocaire box may be an iconic feature for Irish households but why support a roman catholic organization instead of a secular charity willing to put the welfare of the impoverished over dogma and identity politics? Should secularists boycott Trocaire and instead support a non-religious charity?

    Links :
    Red Nose Day gives millions to those who support abortion: Catholics should boycott it | CatholicHerald.co.uk
    Trócaire | Irish Charity Working for a Just World

  2. #2
    Politics.ie Member Druidess's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by the_Observer View Post
    The Trocaire box may be an iconic feature for Irish households but why support a roman catholic organization instead of a secular charity willing to put the welfare of the impoverished over dogma and identity politics? Should secularists boycott Trocaire and instead support a non-religious charity?
    I think its important to take a broad view of what the organisation in question is doing, not just focussing on issues such as reproduction and contraception.

    Religious organisations can do a lot of good in impoverished countries, I say that as a secularist. The issues of abortion and contraception are decided by people themselves and in Africa they don't tend to listen to the church about these matters as much as the Irish did at one point.
    The facts and nothing but the facts.

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    Politics.ie Member Druidess's Avatar
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    Didn't the pope (before he spoke of retirement) say that condoms are ok....?
    The facts and nothing but the facts.

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    Politics.ie Member Ramon Mercadar's Avatar
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    I think Trocaire does a lot of good work. I certainly wouldn't boycott them.
    In 1908, in London, at the Olympics, Irish American Martin Sheridan announced “This flag dips for no earthly king," when the US team paraded past the royal box.

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    Politics.ie Member
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    If you don't want to give, don't. Really, what's the big deal or are you just intent on going after every Catholic organisation even those doing some good?

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    Politics.ie Member Ramon Mercadar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Druidess View Post
    Didn't the pope (before he spoke of retirement) say that condoms are ok....?
    No, no! He advised people to invest in rubber futures.
    In 1908, in London, at the Olympics, Irish American Martin Sheridan announced “This flag dips for no earthly king," when the US team paraded past the royal box.

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    Politics.ie Member stopdoingstuff's Avatar
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    Of course they should. It is absolutely vital to have a hobby.
    Faoi mhóid bheith saor

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    Politics.ie Member seabhcan's Avatar
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    Plenty of non-religious charities out there doing fantastic work, and with much lower 'overheads'. For example: the Rwandan Children's Project-Home

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    Politics.ie Member Socratus O' Pericles's Avatar
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    There are plenty of charities to support surely there are one or two for people of all persuasions to support. I give a little to

    ISPCC - Protecting children 24 hours a day

    and
    Basic Human Needs
    The truth of an idea is not a stagnant property inherent in it. Truth happens to an idea. It becomes true, is made true by events.

  10. #10

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    I certainly wouldn't boycott them although I did switch a monthly direct debit from them to St. John of gods (another catholic organisation). But I try to switch it around yearly anyway or it depends on who calls to the door.

    That said, I do think that preaching against male contraception kills people.
    Redacted.

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