22. THE CATHOLIC CHURCH'S INFLUENCE ON U.S. POPULATION
The "Mumford Affair," cited by the American Humanist Association
to be as important as the Scopes trial, warns of a new McCarthy styled
campaign to cripple population-control leaders and institutions.
On August 12, 1983, following his refusal to resign his position as
research scientist at Family Health Internation, of Chapel Hill, North
Carolina, Dr. Stephen D. Mumford was fired by the president of FHI.
Mumford's dismissal was said to be the result of pressure by a religious
coalition. In Mumford's case, the pressure was applied after his publication
of several articles exposing the Catholic Church's influence on population
and national security.
The FHI (and Mumford) was one of five groups cited as "primary
anti-life targets" in a press release issued by the U.S. Coalition
for Life on January 21, 1983. Other groups cited were The Pathfinder
Fund, The United Nations Fund for Population Activities, The International
Planned Parenthood Federation, and The Futures Group. The release also
called for the dismantling and defunding of the Office of Population
Affairs of the Agency for International Development in the State Department.
Mumford believes the Coalition's campaign may be effective because
President Reagan has the "most Catholic" administration in
history. Current and past members of the administration who are Catholic
include Richard Allen, William Clark, William Casey, Alexander Haig,
George Schultz, Margaret Heckler, and Attorney-General William French
It is suggested that because of pressure by groups like the Coalition
and the Catholic Church, our government has switched from a policy of
responsible assistance to internationally requested family planning
endeavors to one of cooperation with the Vatican in weakening the world
population growth control effort.
The decline of the world population growth control effort of the past
couple of years has coincided, according to Mumford, with the activities
of Pope John Paul II and his Vatican. The Pope's "position has
been well covered by the American press," Mumford said, "It
is indeed unfortunate that the actions of the Vatican to intervene in
our national affairs have not been equally publicized."
The American Humanist Association said that the issues involved are
much bigger than one man: "McCarthy-styled treatment of 'dissidents'
-- those committed to exposing policies detrimental to the future of
the world (Mumford was not the only scientist pressured to leave); increasingly
dangerous pressure from organized religion on government officials resulting
in policy changes through legislative or administrative actions; and
freedom of speech and freedom of the press."
Lloyd L. Morain, editor of The Humanist, said reporters for both the
Washington Post and the New York Times wanted to investigate the story
but were "abruptly overruled by superiors."
THE HUMANIST, Nov/Dec, 1983, "The Mumford Affair."