Friday, April 25, 2008

Mixed messages

While I adamantly believe it is the sole right of a woman to make the choices about her body, I have also always been able to understand how a reasonable person might object to abortion.

But the problem is there seem to be so few reasonable people whose objection is just about abortion. All too often, these are the same folks who take ridiculously strident views (One really has to wonder what's really going on in their heads) about women's sexuality.

For instance, often they're the ones behind the drug counter who want to be able to deny a woman access to her birth control - Bill Maher calls them "activist pharmacists" - due to their own personal religious objections.

And since we're already quoting Bill Maher, here's his response to those people who would deny their daughters vaccinations that could prevent a deadly form of cervical cancer because they fear it would lead to sexual promiscuity.

And of course, let's not forget those esteemed Pennsylvania lawmakers who last fall tried to stand in the way of regulations that would have guaranteed rape victims (rape victims!) access to emergency contraception at hospitals across the state.


So, it is refreshing and perhaps worth celebrating the fact that our freshman U.S. Senator supports a bill that would restore college student access to low-cost birth control.

From a Planned Parenthood news item:
After months of lobbying by Planned Parenthood staff, and a groundswell of grassroots support for affordable birth control, Senator Bob Casey, Jr. has signed on as a co-sponsor of the Prevention Through Affordable Access Act (S. 2347). Since January 2007, college health centers and safety net providers lost their ability to purchase low cost birth control as a result of a legislative oversight. This has caused birth control prices to skyrocket to up to 900% for some women! A no-cost legislative fix has been introduced in both the House and Senate to combat the problem, and there is hope that these vehicles will move in the coming weeks.

The news item encourages people to write Sen. Casey a letter of support.

Hooray for the sanity in this measure. As has been shown time after time, improved access to birth control means fewer unwanted pregnancies, which means fewer (Say it with me) abortions. After all, that's supposed to be what they're fighting for.

Lauri in York

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