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The Tally Ho

Monday, September 25, 2006

"Birth control or abortion: which one do you support?"

--one of my colleagues put it that way today, and I thought it was a fairly succinct way to put the current challenge in our culture. (For those of you playing along on the LJ blog, this was the Nemesis. She's actually pretty smart, when she's not fussing over her wardrobe.)

But not everyone has gotten her memo yet. Just this weekend, in the 'burbs of my fair city, we had a fairly major anti-contraception conference. The Chicago Tribune covered it on the front page of the Sunday paper. Please read the article, as it makes the main points pretty accurately. (Bonus points: find the dig against sex education!) It also points out, correctly, that a full-scale assault on contraception isn't feasible at this point, but that activists might begin by stripping government funding for contraceptive services (in progress) or expanding "conscience" clauses to allow pharmacists and doctors to refuse contraceptives to patients (also in progress). The article's only weakness is that it presents both those strategies as hypothetical, when they're actually going on as we speak.

I was really pleased to read lots of quotes from the anti-contraception activists, which seem to make a sturdy case against their own arguments. Let's recap...

* Contraception devalues children? No, but having kids that you don't want and can't feed would definitely do so.
* Contraception harms relationships between men and women and causes divorce? No, the patriarchy and consumer culture do that just fine.
* Contraception promotes sexual promiscuity? If promiscuity wasn't a problem before reliable contraceptives existed, then how did sexually transmitted diseases ever get spread? They're actually speaking here of female promiscuity, since boys will be boys, you know. And saying women should be responsible for curbing men's promiscuity is pretty ludicrous.
* Contraception leads to falling birth rates? Check. But since I'm all about responsible population growth, I fail to see that as a social ill. Again, this argument is somewhat in code; it's not that there are not enough people in the world, but some groups tend to feel that there aren't enough white people in the world.

While "a stunning 98 percent of women 15 to 44 who have had sex report using at least one method of contraception," affluent women are more likely to use birth control successfully. Not surprisingly, we have fewer kids. We're more likely to have the free time to rail against the patriarchy and blog about it. Something really must be done. (/snark)

By the way? When I ask students about birth control without artificial means, I'm hoping to elicit the responses "abstinence" and "natural family planning". However, they generally come up with "oral sex" and "gay relationships" in the same conversation. Contraception foes should be warned: even if they do get their way, middle schoolers can come up with contraception hacks without batting an eye.

3 Comments:

  • Hey Trope, I'm posting from aus and with what you got goin on I'm glad of that. Tell me if I'm wrong but you seem to be part of the minority over there. (being sane)
    Could you tell me roughly what % of your christian comunity are (radical,fundamentalist's who want to impose their radical ideals and beliefs on the whole country)
    All sounds a bit Taliban-ish?
    Seems they have too much power, seems they have bush in their
    pockets. Church and state should never entwine. That to me spells
    Fundamentalist government(not good)
    A good christian heart would not force their ideals on others,they are more likely to serve the people in any way they can offering assistance to those in need. Some may appreciate their efforts and want to be more like them.-Ridicule and condemnation isn't the way to go- they'll never change hearts and minds that way.
    Maybe they know that what they ask is ridiculous, so try to impose their will. Any way you should be safe, you have your constitution to protect your rights, unless Bush tears it up that is. He's like a puppet on a string.
    I think if there were a god he would want people to find Humanity. True humanity can only be achieved by concidering others/caring about others as much as, if not more than yourself.
    Then and only then could we call ourselves a -Civilisation-
    Those are my thoughts.

    ausblog

    PS- I have some other thoughts on abortion, I'll post seperate incase you dont want to add- I'll understand but just want people to concider what I have to say not do what I say, Thanks.

    By Blogger aus blog, at 11:55 PM  

  • Over 3,500 terminations per day, 1.3 MILLION per year in the United States alone.
    50 or 60 MILLION per year World Wide.

    I am a pro-lifer who has no religious convictions at all . I didn't need the fear of god or anything else to come to my decision, just a good sence of what is right and wrong.
    You see we were all once a fetus. Is it beyond the realm of possibilities that when your mother first learned she was carrying you, she may have considered her options? What if she had decided to terminate? Would that have been OK?
    You would not exist, if you have children they would not exist, and your (husband or wife) would be married to someone else. You would have been deprived of all your experiences and memories. In this day and age with terminations being so readily available and so many being carried out, if you make it to full term
    you can consider yourself lucky. Lucky you had a mother that made the choice of life for you. Don't you think they all deserve the same basic human right, LIFE?
    I'm all for contraception, prevention is certainly better than termination.
    Did you know you can get an implant that is safe, 99.9% effective, and lasts for three years? Just think girls not even a show for three years, wouldn't that be great? I think too many people rely too heavily on the last option (abortion), I think if abortions weren't so readily available people would manage their reproductive system far better resulting in a fraction of the number of unwanted pregnancies.
    World wide there are over 50 MILLION aborted pregnancies each year. In America 3,500 terminations carried out every day, that's over 1.3 million every year, 50% of all cases claimed that birth control had been used, 48% admitted they took no precaution, and 2% had a medical reason. That's a stagering 98% that may have been prevented had an effective birth control been used. Don't get me wrong, I suspect the percentages in Australia would be much the same.
    Just a lot of unnessessary killing.

    At the point of conception is when life began for you. This was the start of your existance. Your own personal big bang. Three weeks after conception heart started to beat. First brain waves recorded at six weeks after conception. Seen sucking thumb at seven weeks after conception.

    I am convinced that in the not too distant future, people will look back at many of the practices of today with disbelief and horror.



    ausblog

    By Blogger aus blog, at 12:01 AM  

  • Thanks Trop, Tally-Ho.

    By Blogger aus blog, at 12:06 AM  

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