Leftist commentary from a mouthy bitch
For a medication that 95% of American women take at one point or another in their lives, an awful lot of America sure doesn’t seem to have even half an idea as to how it works. So I’d like to talk about what birth control pills do. But first, I’d like to point out the CDC’s webpage about birth control methods and how they work.
The birth control pill works by preventing ovulation. It does not cause little mini-abortions. It prevents conception. The pill is not abortion. The Morning After pill is not abortion. It, too, works by preventing ovulation. No ovulation = No egg. No egg = No conception. The Mirena IUD and NuvaRing work via a very similar mechanism.
Now, we’ve gotten that little Right Wing, Anti-Choice, Bullshit talking point out of the way.
The way the pill works, in particular, is that you take a pill every day at the same time, in order to maintain a steady hormonal level that keeps you from ovulating. You don’t take a pill every time you have sex. You don’t just take pills when you have sex. If you do that, you will likely get pregnant because you’re doing it wrong. Birth control costs the same whether you’re having sex with a football team a day, or your monogamous boyfriend once a week, month, or whatever,or not at all.
If you have an Mirena IUD, you get it inserted for a one-time fee, and leave it in for five years. Depo Provera is a shot that you get every three months, whether you’re having sex or not, to maintain those hormone levels.
So, now we’ve ascertained that the number of people you’re having sex with does not alter the cost of the majority of hormonal birth control methods.
Now, why do women use birth control?
First and foremost, women like sex. Women like sex as much as men do. Women want to have sex. In order to have sex RESPONSIBLY so as not to get pregnant, the majority of women in this country use some form of birth control.
Some women also use hormonal birth control as treatment for a host of medical conditions. PCOS, PMDD, dysmenorrhea, are just a few of the conditions that the pill is frequently used to treat.
Women who like sex, use the birth control pill to prevent pregnancy. As I’ve stated ad nauseum, the greatest predictor that a woman will spend her life in poverty is how young she is when she has children, and how many. The earlier she has them, and the more of them she has, the more likely she is to remain below the poverty line. When women have the ability to regulate when and how they have children, the odds that they will climb above the poverty line increase, sometimes drastically.
So, why on earth would anyone want to deny women contraception?
I think this hearkens back to something a former room-mate of mine said once: “Homophobic men are homophobic because they fear that somewhere, someone thinks of them, and is capable of treating them like they think of and treat women.”
I think that’s a big chunk of the problem.
Just like guys who think they have to trick women into sex think the “Yes Means Yes” model of consent means they’ll never get laid, guys who think that the only way to have a woman love them is to make her financially dependent on them, think that if you remove that dependence or potential dependence, then no woman will ever choose to be with them.
It’s fundamentally about male insecurity, and the ability of these men to convince some women that all women NEED male protection and provisions.
If women don’t have to worry about getting knocked up, then they can view sex with the same laissez faire attitude men have always had. So, if women can choose, why would they choose you? Are you afraid you bring nothing to the table but an income?
And what the hell is up with this completely borked idea that using birth control to avoid pregnancy is somehow irresponsible? I don’t even get that. I mean, ok, I get it to an extent, “Eve’s punishment, blah de blah de blah…” but my point here is, not everyone is Christian, so keep your stinking woman-hating theology off my body. Also, there’s this weird dynamic where children are you punishment for not keeping your slutty legs together.
And the Right says WE hate children.
What the Pro-Choice side wants is this: EVERY CHILD A WANTED CHILD.
In order to attain this, women have to be able to decide when, how and where they get pregnant. That is the only way we’ll ever reach that goal.
In summation, birth control doesn’t work like the Right says it does, it doesn’t cost more (for hormonal birth control) to have sex with an army than it does to have sex with one guy. Using birth control IS responsible. And children should not be a punishment.
I just want to point out two things, not because *you* do not know them (as I already know you are well aware) but because other people might not – Christians didn’t start hating women as a religion until the King James version of the bible. Earlier translations feature women more frequently, fully, and honorably than translations from that point forward. Why so many (particularly of the most vocal) Christians are only capable of repeating what their minister tells them the bible says instead of, I dunno… reading it *themselves* and/or comparing it with other translations, is completely beyond me. If, as so many of these people claim, the bible is the only book you need to read, a lifetime is an awfully long time to not read earlier translations. They are probably not particularly committed to the bible as the actual Word of God (or they would want the most accurate version they can get) as they are to the bible as The Law of the Land.
tl;dr = Christians used to not hate women. Shame on them for doing so now. I agree.
The other point I want to bring up is that I think a good portion of why the Religious Right does not want women to have birth control is part of the infantilism of women that is rampant in their ideology. The concept that women are just not responsible enough to be in charge of their own bodies and reproduction. It is a serious rant for another day, but it bears mention as part of this discussion, I think.
Well said, on all fronts. I am not bringing up these points because I think you need them, but so those who follow me in reading have them.
It isn’t just being anti-woman; it’s anti-a whole raft of things. A friend reliably tells me she met a man a few decades ago who was ultra religious and had grown unhappy with his church, so he sought a new one. When my friend asked what he was looking for, he candidly explained that what HE needed was something to be against – and this particular new denomination he’d joined (don’t remember what it was) was firmly against a lot of things he wanted to be against. She said it’s the only time one has ever admitted it to her – though of course we see it around us all the time from the noisybots.
It’s time to start submitting Ballot initiatives in all 50 States.