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Ear to the Ground

Condoms, Not Laws, Help Cut Abortions

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Posted on Oct 14, 2009
Flickr / Hellgasms!

This isn’t going to sound all that shocking, but remember that this country is still wrapping its head around evolution: Criminalizing abortion does not reduce the number of abortions; it reduces the number of safe abortions. Contraception, however, does reduce abortions, according to an epic study of 197 countries.

The research was carried out by a pro-choice think tank, but you don’t have to be biased or even particularly clever to figure out that birth control prevents unwanted pregnancies and, therefore, abortions.

Guess what country, according to the BBC’s report on the study, has an abortion rate “among the highest in the developed world”? Hint: abstinence-only education.  —PZS

BBC:

Even the UK, which has a relatively high rate, fares well in comparison to the US, where the number of abortions is among the highest in the developed world. The institute says this rate is in part explained by inconsistencies in insurance coverage of contraceptive supplies.

In much of eastern Europe, where abortion was treated as a form of birth control, abortion rates have dropped by 50% in the last decade as contraceptives have become more widely available.

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By ardee, October 20, 2009 at 3:38 am Link to this comment

“Anything that increases the number of abortions, and decreases the number of births, is a good thing.”

I do not question your philosophy, NABNYC, only your ill conceived choice of words. Abortion is one of “those” words and should be tempered with great care. We live, after all, in a nation wherein majorities are needed and we must not turn our backs on potential allies.

My then girlfriend and I once faced a similar choice, I believe that aborting the pregnancy was the right decision then and I do so now, so many decades later. But I am still haunted by it.

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By Leefeller, October 19, 2009 at 10:40 am Link to this comment

Very refreshing remarks NABNYC, your explanation appreciated, women’s voices such as yours should be heard on many subjects much more often, instead of the normal wasp republican mantra constantly expoused on the MSM. 

Controversy may be necessary to get peoples attention, Hell! Obamas Reverend Wright case in point, truth always seems controversial to the blind belief of programed mantras.

Men should submit to women on the Abortion issue as many others.

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By NABNYC, October 19, 2009 at 10:18 am Link to this comment

Ardee:  of course my statement was controversial.  But no more so than the Clinton proclamation that all abortions are tragedies.  What an absurd statement.  If an egg and sperm are flushed naturally, one week after the pregnancy began, does that really rise to the level of “tragedy?”  Isn’t this just right-wing religious claptrap?  All abortions are not tragic.  Some are, certainly, when the parents wanted the child but some horrible circumstances made its ability to survive after birth unlikely, so the pregnancy is terminated.  That’s tragic.  For the parents.  But not all abortions are tragic.

My motivation is that I’m tired of all liberals bowing their heads and reciting the mantras of people like the Clintons that abortions are a tragedy, must be avoided.  This gives too much ground to the anti-abortion crowd. 

It really is a personal issue, and not one for public definition.  Abortions are not necessarily always a tragedy.  Sometimes they are simply of no consequence whatsoever.  For example, let’s say two 20-somethings meet in a bar, have unprotected sex, 3 weeks later she’s missed her period, takes a pregnancy test and it’s positive, and she can buy something over the counter that will terminate the pregnancy with this male whose name she can’t even remember.  Not a tragedy.  An egg and a sperm united in the early stages is not a “person.” 

I suggest that we change the debate and deplore the spilling of the male seed, make it illegal for men to masturbate or have sex other than with the purpose of creating a pregnancy.  That would put the burden (and religious control) on the men and ruin their lives.  Instead, because of sexism, this crowd claims that every female egg that gets some sticky sperm attached to it is a “person,” and suddenly the state has the right to take complete control over the woman.  That’s just silly.  I can argue that sperm is as much as “person” on its own, as it is once attached to an egg.

If our constitution intended that a fetus be considered a person, then a pregnant woman would be counted as two residents for purposes of determining the number of representatives to be sent to Congress.  The constitution never intended that a fetus be considered a person and, therefore, there is no legal basis whatsoever for the federal government to involve itself in women’s pregnancy.  The federal government simply has no jurisdiction or authority in that arena.

I would argue there is nothing in any state government by which women gave to the states the authority to make decisions about a woman’s pregnancy.  All rights originally rest with the people, and unless they have been turned over to the state, they remain with the people.

Therefore, whether a woman has an abortion or not is strictly her own business, not the business of anyone else in society.  The only reason society intrudes is the same reason society tries to tell women where they can go, when, with whom, what to wear, what not to wear, what to think, what to believe:  because women are considered inferior second-class citizens, and their inherent human rights and dignity are considered subject to control by men at the personal and governmental level.

I disagree with that premise.  I never gave anyone the right to control my body or make decisions about my pregnancies for me.  It’s my rights, my body.  You know what they say:  Hands off my body.

http://NABNYC.blogspot.com

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By ardee, October 17, 2009 at 6:47 am Link to this comment

NABNYC, October 15 at 7:23 pm #

Anything that increases the number of abortions, and decreases the number of births, is a good thing.

Not a comment designed to win allies I fear. Better that birth control be in the fore and abortion only a rare necessity. As Clinton noted,
“abortion should be safe, legal and rare”.

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By NABNYC, October 15, 2009 at 4:23 pm Link to this comment

Anything that increases the number of abortions, and decreases the number of births, is a good thing.

Look around at all the animals who once lived on this earth.  They had homes, neighborhoods, shelter, protection from the elements, food, water.  They lived full and complete lives.  And all we moronic and selfish humans had to do was to be reasonable in our behavior, to co-habitate with these amazing animals, all of them, which were a part of our world.

Look around at the plants that once grew on this earth.  They had natural cycles, grew without farmers or chemicals, grew naturally like fruit on trees and potatoes underground, had flowers, shade trees, wood, places for the animals to live, provided us with food, helped clear our air, cooled our earth in places.  And all we humans had to do was to be reasonable in our behavior, to cohabitate with these amazing plants.

Instead, we’re destroying everything.  We take it, use it, destroy it, throw it away.  Entire portions of the earth have been stripped bare of every living thing—every plant, every animal dead—because humans, like locusts or cockroaches, are consuming everything in their path.  Often out of desperation, but what’s the difference when everything is being destroyed.  The only way to stop this and to save the world is by an immediate and radical reduction in the population.  Stop breeding.

I support abortions for everyone.  Anyone willing to get an abortion should be given a gold medal.  Anyone willing to get fixed so they cannot breed, or at least to limit themselves to 1/2 of 1 child, to reduce the population of people by one-half, should be paid money. 

This cult of birthing is a direct result of a propaganda campaign by the Catholics and the Mormons and their Christian Right fanatic friends, who promote the view that a woman should keep her mouth shut and her womb open, that multiple births are best, and each new child is like a little annuity to the church, likely to tithe every month of their lives so a few rich, fat, promiscuous men can live like kings while millions starve and we are all doomed.

So hoorey for abortions.  Let’s stop this phony “Abortions are always a tragedy” claptrap started by the Republicans and adopted by too many Democrats, and let’s get real. 

There are too many people.  We need to stop breeding.  Anyone who has one child should be shunned if they get pregnant again.  And we should pay people in the third world to get fixed after one kid.

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By Spiritgirl, October 14, 2009 at 11:07 am Link to this comment

Don’t you know that the “Right to Life” crowd only believe in that “Life” as long as it’s in the womb!  They don’t believe in sex either, unless you are trying to have children!  Don’t you know that these people are as bad as the Puritans - being pregnant now replaces the “Scarlet letter” that women used to be forced to wear!

What they also won’t tell you is that once said child arrives, if you have no job/house/or health-care - well that’s on you for being so irresponsible as to have a child!  What hypocrites!!  And until those people go running down to the foster care services to sponsor a child, or adopt some of the thousands of children in the system - then and only then, will we be able to sit down and start having a dialog about my womb!!!

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By thebeerdoctor, October 14, 2009 at 10:45 am Link to this comment

I guess Fat Freddy must turn off that virus infested web site and put up a firewall, most likely a strict Muslim version that will block any image of any woman, except her mysterious eyes. Then he should sit down like the Reverend Hedges seems to suggest, with a classic book, perhaps one penned by the former correspondent of the New York Times, which will reassure his troubled soul that we are all going to hell in a hand basket.
(Ministers of great wisdom have informed me that Kleenex does not offer any absolution.)

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By Fat Freddy, October 14, 2009 at 7:18 am Link to this comment

The Catholic Church still opposes all types of contraception with the exception of the Rhythm Method.

Sex is bad—don’t you know that?

So, I can’t have sex, and, according to Hedges post the other day, I cant masturbate and watch porn. Hell, I may as well have it cut off. Think I could sell it on Craigslist or Ebay? Maybe I could donate it to the Catholic Church.

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By Leefeller, October 14, 2009 at 7:17 am Link to this comment

Abstaining is the only thing that really works, and most important is everyone else do the abstaining!

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By Ouroborus, October 14, 2009 at 5:56 am Link to this comment

Education, contraception, and a sense of what the
concept of personal responsibility is all about. But
then that would be a fundamental shift in the American
way. Nevermind.

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By Inherit The Wind, October 14, 2009 at 3:57 am Link to this comment

Don’t forget: Half the executions in America take place in Texas and he presided over something like 125 of them.

Been making this point for years: Contraception is the best anti-abortion measure there is.  HOWEVER, the Anti-Abortion crowd aren’t interested in that, despite calling themselves “Right to Life”. They are interested in controlling sex, as the Church has been doing for something like 1700 years.  And the synagogues of the Orthodox, and the mosques are right there with them.

Sex is bad—don’t you know that? Only married couples trying to have children should do it, and they shouldn’t enjoy it, if possible.

Think I’m kidding?  The attacks on Roe v Wade concentrate on the “discovered” right of privacy.  But that right was put forth earlier in the Griswold v Connecticut decision. 

And what was Griswold? That a MARRIED couple could NOT be told by the State of Connecticut that they could not use….(wait for it)...BIRTH CONTROL!

So…the entire attack on Roe v Wade is based on attacking the decision that allows birth control, which allows people to have sex for reasons OTHER than procreation.

Nothing “Pro-Life” about that.

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By ardee, October 14, 2009 at 2:46 am Link to this comment

The legacy George Bush left Texas after his terms as Governor of that State were twofold; the dirtiest air and water in the nation and the highest rate of teenage pregnancy in the land.

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