Home > News Irony > In the News – Random Thoughts on Birth Control

In the News – Random Thoughts on Birth Control

February 18, 2012 Leave a comment Go to comments

Strange times we live in for sure.  Yesterday, a House Congressional Committee held a hearing on the President’s policy to ensure all women have access to contraceptive coverage with no co-pay.  Who better of course to discuss the merits of women’s access to contraceptives than… well… men?  Well, not only men, but men of the clergy.

Raise your hand if you've ever knocked up a chick. OK, you're all qualified to testify.

Apparently there were a few women eager to testify why birth control is rather important to them, one of them a law student and another an executive at a Catholic Non-Profit organization, but doggone it, neither were members of the clergy.  See, the point apparently was to have some politically motivated theater er… testimony regarding exemptions from contraceptive and reproductive insurance requirements based on religious and moral grounds. Nope, apparently women should have no say about this kind of coverage mandate to be included in health insurance.

In the interest of fairness and reciprocity, I believe there should be alternate hearings scheduled to hear testimony about insurance coverage mandates as they relate to men’s Erectile Dysfunction and the associated treatment of such with pharmaceuticals like Viagra and Cialis. And of course, who better qualified to testify as expert witnesses on such matters of men and their sexual proclivities than this fine group of ladies?

Lips that touch ED drugs shall never touch ours. Come to think of it, neither shall any other body part for that matter...

Have at it, everyone!

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  1. February 18, 2012 at 6:04 pm

    Bless you Phil! I know I’ll take a ration of “#@%!!%$#@@@” over it as it is a hot topic, but I was a child of the 60’s. CHOICE for a woman about the rest of HER LIFE is HER CHOICE, not the man’s, not any man, not the general public, not political leaders, the government or ANYBODY ELSE!

    I’m a mother. I chose to be one. However, I also wanted the freedom to be a mother when I could actually afford to raise my child rather than have the rest of the population help me pay to RAISE my child.

    Accidents happen. Sex happens. There are some people who should NEVER be mothers.

    Just because you CAN conceive and deliver does NOT make you a mother and fit to raise a child. (Can you tell this is a hot topic for ME?)

    Have I ever had an abortion? No, I haven’t, didn’t, I’m glad the PILL worked for me. I married young at 21. Was I ready to be a mother then? Could I afford to raise a child then?–NO. However, had I needed the option, I fight for every woman who might need it. The time of back alley abortions and coat-hanger deaths is OVER, and it should stay OVER.

    Is life precious? It most certainly is. When you bring a child into this world you must nurture it, give it all the love and care you can and be able to PAY for the raising of that child.

    The only ones I ever hear SCREAMING right to life are the only ones who cannot give birth–men. These are the same ones who will duck out for a pack of smokes never to be seen again. These are the same ones who talk young girls into “Please have my baby, don’t kill it…” and they have little time for those children later nor do they help pay to raise them. These young girls have their eyes filled with fantasy about a wonderful life that isn’t going to happen–over and over again.

    Young women need a does of reality. If they can’t support themselves, they cannot support a child and the rest of us shouldn’t be paying for that either–over and over again.

    A baby turns into a child and later into an adult. Parents, both of them, have to know this is a commitment for the rest of their lives–forever, until you DIE, YOU are a PARENT.

    End of rant….sigh.

    • February 19, 2012 at 9:07 am

      Carol, I know from where you speak and come from. I also know we live in an area of the country where we have the highest concentration of very young unwed teens having babies. Children themselves bearing babies. This is a topic unto itself, and way beyond the scope of what I had ever envisioned this Blog to be.

      The original topic at hand was the current Administration’s attempt to enforce Health Insurance policies to provide Reproductive and Contraceptive benefits and access to all women, including women employed in Religious organizations, and extending to organizations such as non-profits and Catholic hospitals. The argument framed by religious leaders was that it was akin to forcing a Kosher Deli to carry Pork products.

      What could have been a very interesting debate on the topic turned into essentially political theater to embarrass the President, chaired by a Republican who selected all the witnesses and denied access to any women, including the Minority Leader of the House, a CEO of a Catholic Charities Organization, and a law student at Georgetown prepared to testify about a serious gynecological condition that, if left untreated with birth control pills, could lead to Ovarian Cancer and the removal of her ovaries. The committee chair refused to hear any of this because he wanted the issue to remain on the freedom of religious organizations to carve out these kinds of benefits. If so, why not allow a good point or two to be made? Oh that’s right, politics…

  2. Alissa
    February 18, 2012 at 7:43 pm

    Amen, Carol, amen!

    • February 19, 2012 at 9:09 am

      Pass the collection plate…

  3. February 18, 2012 at 8:38 pm

    I thought the argument was that the religious employers wanted to be able to opt out of paying for a female employees’ birth control. Purely on principles, I get why they don’t want to do it. It kind of totally goes against their religious principles with regards to children so I understand why they wouldn’t want to support that.

    That being said, given the fact that the world population stands at 7 billion, I think it’s very irresponsible of the churches to make it difficult for their female employees to obtain birth control. And, it’s far better for the mother’s health to prevent conception than it is to terminate using abortion. Abortion has come a long way since back alley abortions, but it still carries a physical risk to the mother (risks of infections, hemmorhage, perforated uterus) as well as leaves an emotional scar. Still, it beats the alternative – bringing an unintended baby into the world.

    An abortion costs $400-$1500(ish), depending on how late (earlier abortions cost less).

    Compare that figure to the cost of raising a child.

    http://money.cnn.com/2011/09/21/pf/cost_raising_child/index.htm

    “The cost of raising a child from birth to age 18 for a middle-income, two-parent family averaged $226,920 last year (not including college), according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. That’s up nearly 40% — or more than $60,000 — from 10 years ago. Just one year of spending on a child can cost up to $13,830 in 2010, compared to $9,860 a decade ago.”

    And that’s not even the psychological costs to the mother and unwanted child, who is probably going to be at risk for abuse.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Postpartum_depression

    “Segre et al., also found a correlation between a mother’s social class and PPD. Not surprisingly, women with fewer resources indicate a higher level of postpartum depression and stress than those with more financial resources. Rates of PPD decreased as income increased as follows:[12] Women with fewer resources are also more likely to have an unintended or unwanted pregnancy, further increasing risk of PPD. Beck (2001) concurs with this, stating that these women are at risk for PPD because they may experience stressors such as financial difficulties. Single mothers of low income may have fewer resources that they have access to while transitioning into motherhood.”

    So, yeah. These are very important reasons I think this is totally bogus.

    Religious leaders are really freaking clueless.

    • February 19, 2012 at 9:17 am

      What the Religious groups want is the liberty to carve out coverage benefits they object to on moral and religious principle.

      Very interesting numbers and a pretty compelling argument. Too bad it will likely not see the light of day with regard to the discussion, as most of it is religiously and politically motivated, and as a result skewed to ideology and belief instead of cold, hard facts.

  4. February 18, 2012 at 8:39 pm

    Sorry, Phil, hope you don’t mind my answering Carol first: “Dose of reality”? Exactly. Get real., Carol. Few “young” women will get themselves pregnant on purpose. It happens. What are you saying “the rest of us shouldn’t be paying for that either – over and over again”. Wow. That is one hell of a statement. What do you suggest we do? Let mother and child rot in the gutter? And who is “the rest of us”? Who is “us”? I am not. I won’t ask the question that is on my lips. I am sure that you yourself, and may I congratulate you on your good fortune, were born under impeccable circumstances and that you will turn out, or already are, a perfectly respectable grandmother to your son’s or daughter’s children. All of them sired as and when the time was ripe and the finances in place.

    And please do not malign men. Fact is that they have very little say in whether a child “fathered” by them will see the light at the end of a nine month tunnel. Neither can they opt out of their obligations to contribute, at least a little, to the proverbial “bringing home the bacon”.

    U

    • February 19, 2012 at 10:16 am

      Ursula, I do not mind your answering Carol at all. I would like to think we all can have discussions here with each other freely. I have no intention of moderating anyone’s thoughts on the matter. I only toss the Spam outta here, unless of course I choose to highlight and lampoon it.

      I would like to point out for purposes of clarification that Carol, one of the hardest working women on the planet, struggles financially as she cares for her husband who has been chronically ill for over a decade now and unable to work, yet cannot qualify for any disability benefits due to her enormous pride and work ethic, They will likely not qualify as long as she works and earns any income – just barely enough to keep a roof over her head, food on the table, and pay for medical treatments and medicines her husband needs that are largely uncovered by insurance policies that exclude certain benefits of chronic conditions, all while trying to put her daughter through college. While tempting to say to her to just allow yourself to fall into financial ruin and let the State pick up all your expenses, but that is not the way she was raised. I can understand her frustration, even if I may not always agree with the hyperbole.

      Which brings me back to the topic at hand. You make very valid points, and in order to solve the problems we need to eliminate the rhetoric and hyperbole, which play well in short sound bites, but rarely address the much deeper complexities of the problem. I do agree that men may certainly be carved out of the process of choice, but then again, neither are they asked to forfeit 9 months of their lives, suspend temporarily their work to give birth. On that issue, men cannot truly relate. I could say my wife gave birth to three children, and I didn’t feel a thing – so what’s the big deal about being pregnant? Yeah, I’m sure that would go over as well as a turd in a punch bowl with her…

      But now we’ve veered way off the original topic I thought I’d lampoon, which dealt with access to insurance benefits that include reproductive and contraceptive methods, and the ability to allow religious institutions, broadly defined to carve out those benefits, and furthermore to have only men in clergy testify as expert witnesses on the topic. In the end, it was nothing more than political theater in an election year designed to embarrass (and hopefully damage) the President.

      Oy, I think we could all use a bit more wine…

      • February 19, 2012 at 2:27 pm

        Yes, Phil, keep the glass full full. Since I am not pregnant or breastfeeding little damage will be done.

        I am sorry about Carol’s circumstances. I feel for her because I know what it’s like to hit financial rock bottom. Never more so than when you fall from a great height. But that doesn’t excuse her mindset. And with hers I most certainly do not agree.

        I am not familiar with the American way of funding health – except that it seems spectacularly expensive. In Europe it goes without saying that in some countries any woman of any income of any age will be supplied with the pill free of charge. And yes, there are others which will make you pay. As an aside, making me smile: Condoms have to be purchased – at cost! Opening a whole new can of sperms.

        Did you “make a poor choice in topical material”? The subject you have raised is tough titty. No doubt about it. Good on you that you had the courage to do so.

        U

        • February 19, 2012 at 7:05 pm

          Ursula, I am happy you took my comments in stride.

          I will pour another glass of wine, and try not to get too frustrated at the many shortcomings of our healthcare system and its exorbitant expense – a principal cause of stress among people and employers alike.

  5. February 19, 2012 at 1:12 am

    Oh goodness! Really? The only people qualified to testify are women as they are the ones who have to live with a baby if they get knocked up.

    Let’s start living in the 21st century!

    • February 19, 2012 at 10:17 am

      I don’t know about qualified to testify, but I do think men should be involved in the discussion to at least some extent. I hear what you are saying though.

  6. mrprice1@comcast.net
    February 19, 2012 at 7:22 am

    Yes, access to birth control is going to magically fix everything. I agree with the article though. Having ONLY men debating this topic is simply ridiculous. Of course, having only women debating this topic is also just as ridiculous.

    • February 19, 2012 at 10:22 am

      Hi Mark! Welcome to Random Thoughts. I see you’ve chosen to insert yourself into the middle of a fiery discussion. Why does that not surprise me? 🙂

      No, access to birth control won’t fix everything, but it might fix some things, including its use in some treatments gynecological problems that could prevent Ovarian cancer. The issues are always way more complex than most would like to distill it into. Do you think I made a poor choice in topical material?

      • Mark
        February 19, 2012 at 5:27 pm

        Phil don’t get me wrong, I’m not against access to birth control at all. What I’m against is government mandates that make things free. Nothing is free. And where does it end.

        I’d like to elaborate a little on my comments about the gender of those debating the topic. It seems to me that women want men to help them create life. And when THEY decide to keep the child they certainly want men to step up to the plate and be responsible. Yet, when it comes to terminating a life we are told it’s THEIR decision and men have no place in the discussion? Look, if you don’t want men to get involved in the discussion when you want to terminate life, then create that life without our help.

        OH, I think you made a great choice! 🙂

        • February 19, 2012 at 7:41 pm

          I think you make a strong point about why men ought to be included in the discussion. So no argument here. But in the case of the hearing, it does beg the question then, “Where were the women?” Why where they shut out of the testimony? And that was my point from the very beginning.

  7. February 19, 2012 at 8:19 am

    Exactly! I am offended by this that GOP invites men to testify on women’s health…This is unbelievable.

    • February 19, 2012 at 10:23 am

      I’m sure it is a bit more complex than the way each side is spinning it.

  8. February 19, 2012 at 8:42 am

    General comment by me first, before I go and follow up on everyone’s individual comments.

    Hoo boy! That didn’t take long. I mean, I just threw a big party last week for all the folks to get to know each other a little, and silly me, irreverently lampooning both politics AND religion at the same time. I have no qualms about arguing and yelling er… discussing loudly and passionately. I do hope however, as this seems to be a topic everyone has an opinion on and it’s not a very wishy-washy one, that we can manage to have a lively debate with minimal bruising. OK?

    If that doesn’t work, I always have more wine…

  9. February 19, 2012 at 8:55 am

    Phil, this debate will never be civil, sorry to disappoint you. New party – new ruling – democrats -pro-choice, republicans -pro-life! Seems pretty ridicules to me.

    • February 19, 2012 at 9:09 am

      I know Ariana. Silly me for trying to poke some fun at it.

  10. February 19, 2012 at 9:20 am

    I saw this news on The Daily Show (the only way I can tolerate the news). Your take on it was just as funny as my beloved Jon Stewart. 🙂

    As for the topic of who should provide opinions on whose reproductive health and freedom, I believe it takes two to Tango (or tangle), so people who are sexually active should have their say. I’m pretty sure not enough of them were represented. Because these drugs affect women’s hormones, thus bodies, I feel they should have a louder voice in this matter, but women don’t live in isolation. Men’s voices have a place in this discussion–just not the loudest or sole voice (as in the past).

    Those ladies in the picture, by the way, don’t look like the bathtub, sunset, wine-sipping type. But appearance can be deceiving… 😉

    • February 19, 2012 at 10:28 am

      I understand that the Victorian era was quite a fertile ground for the discussion of sex and sexuality, despite the notion it was puritannical. As you say, appearance can be quite deceiving.

  11. February 19, 2012 at 11:56 am

    Hmmm…Not one to pop pills of any kind myself, Phil. I tend to think this whole debate screams “Give Me Side Effects.” On the other hand, I do think we’re reversing any progress women have made. I keep hearing Republicans trying to prove how conservative they are and while I respect some of those views, men taking on the voice for women’s reproductive health isn’t a view I hold dear. I think this issue is a case of ‘vagina envy.’

    • February 19, 2012 at 2:39 pm

      Close up and personal, Totsy, not that you have to answer: How will you advise your daughter when the time comes? Indeed, how would you advise your son if you had one? “Side effects”? In the name of courtesy I will not snort this minute. Side effects? Yes, side effects. I tell you one thing for nothing: When I was a teenager, and I didn’t “start” early, neither was I promiscuous, the biggest side effect of all, before my mother ensured I was on the pill, continual anxiety and monsterous expense on pregnancy tests. Only relieved by a sigh. Negative. There is an irony in my story … but this is not the place to expand on it.

      And, as I said before, we can’t exclude men out of “reproductive health” as you call it, only to then turn on them if they don’t hold up their end of the “bargain”. Stinks to high heaven.

      U

  12. February 19, 2012 at 12:12 pm

    –VAGINA ENVY.

    Omg, I must say, I loooove that, Tots!

    Freakiy Freud must be rolling over in his grave.

    Oh, Hi, Mr. sweet Phil. Xxx Kissss

    • February 19, 2012 at 7:44 pm

      Well hello back to you Kim.

      (tips hat and reaches out to extended arm to kiss hand) 😉

  13. Mark
    February 19, 2012 at 5:31 pm

    Ursula :
    And, as I said before, we can’t exclude men out of “reproductive health” as you call it, only to then turn on them if they don’t hold up their end of the “bargain”. Stinks to high heaven.
    U

    Bingo!

  14. Red
    February 21, 2012 at 8:15 pm

    If they do not want to pay for reproductive health and birth control and abortion, give up their tax exemptions, go private, pay taxes and only serve and take money from those of the same faith.

    Oh, right! That is unconstitutional. Bummer.

    They want money from all sectors, but want to pick and choose who to deny based on SEX. Damn, wouldn’t you know? That is unconstitutional, too.

    I hate this topic and the idiots who bring it to us over and over and over again. Makes me want for a time machine and a back alley abortion for their mothers.

    *Throws soapbox in back of truck and slings gravel in the driveway.*
    Red.

    PS Send my Congressman the bill for the window I broke. He was at that hearing…nodding his bobblehead.

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