Thursday, 24 September 2009

Criminalizing Contraception

As 40 Days of Harassment kicks off, many bloggers and columnists are noting -- yet again -- the idiocy of the 'pro-life' position on contraception.

You'd think the people most dead-set against abortion would be the most avid cheerleaders for contraception.

You'd be dead wrong.

Antonia Zerbisias often reposts on her blog what she calls her treeware column with links added. Here's yesterday's, with a clarification added.
There are states – most recently Florida – where there are bills to ban contraception. Some pharmacists and doctors, both here and in the U.S., are refusing to provide the pill to patients, even married adult women.

We interrupt this column for a clarification:

The proposal in Florida is for a state constitutional amendment that critics assert would result in criminalization of the Pill. It wouldn't be the first time there have been legislative moves to ban some contraceptives, including the pill.

Then she links to my post about the celebrations the fetus fetishists are having over the success of their many incremental attacks in various US statehouses. Note that there were 300 initiatives against abortion and 60 against contraception.

At RH Reality Check, blogger Hunter Stewart ventures to Wisconsin to check out the 40 Days of Harassment campaign there.
There are two family planning clinics in central Wisconsin – one in Wausau, one in Stevens Point – that have been picketed by typical religious right-wing anti-choicers over the past two years. What’s not typical is that these clinics do not provide abortions. Nor do they provide referrals or even medical counseling for abortions, because their federal grant restrictions explicitly prohibit them from doing so. The people of Wisconsin know this. The protesters know this. So what’s the big deal?

The big deal is that this family planning clinic dispenses contraception – condoms, birth control pills, and emergency contraception. The protesters I spoke with in Wisconsin believe that “the morning-after pill” is the equivalent of murder. They even believe that the birth control pill is a form of murder. (Since in some cases it prevents the fertilized egg – which they would call “the embryonic person” – from implanting in the uterine wall.)

And condoms? One protester told me that condoms encourage men to use women “for sex without repercussions.” But isn’t it the woman who has to deal with the real “repercussions” of a pregnancy? You would think an anti-abortion activist, of all people, would see the use of condoms.

But no. “If you want to have sex,” he told me, waving his finger in the air, “make sure you can deal with the consequences. Which are children.”

Are we clear on this? Fetus fetishists are NOT about the baybeez. They are about control and punishment of mainly women, but men too, who have sex for reasons other then procreation.

The campaign is incremental. Throwing up niggling little laws here and there to restrict access to both abortion and contraception. Howling about pharmacists FORCED to dispense products a patient's doctor has ordered, but that the pill-counter finds morally objectionable. Launching idiotic bullshit campaigns like The Pill Kills. Lying about what emergency contraception or Plan B actually does. Lying about what ordinary hormonal contraception actually does. Shrieeeeking about the life-threatening dangers of the abortion pill.

Because, ultimately, what they want is CONTROL over everybody's reproductive systems. To that end, they want to criminalize abortion AND all forms of 'artificial' contraception.

Make no mistake about it. There is no common ground with these people.


Greg said...

In synch with all of that is the fact that conservatives tend to be anti-abortion *and* anti-welfare.

So you pregnant teens *must* have your babies and *must* raise them without help from anybody else.

Enjoyable sex must be punished. And furthermore, we know we're better than you because our sex lives suck.

Beijing York said...

It's akin to trying to find common ground with racists and homophobes. We shouldn't need to lower ourselves to their levels of hatred to negotiate a middle position. Real human rights are black and white.

Scott in Montreal said...

Great post. We are inching closer to A Handmaid's Tale every day. We need to turn the tide before half the population sees their rights thrown under the bus (make that: the Conservative campaign bus).

Cliff said...

Reminds me Of Sarah Palin when she was Governer of Alaska opposing abortion, contraception and sex education and cutting funding for a shelter for unwed teen moms - good thing her own daughter didn't need it.

Got to love people who are opposed to rain and umbrellas.

Bina said...

I don't seek common ground with those people for the simple reason that there is none to be had. Anyone who opposes abortion, just shouldn't have one. Anyone who opposes birth control may feel free not to use it. But anyone who refuses, in their capacity as a pharmacist, to dispense prescribed medication, should find another line of work which is more congenial, and leave the job to someone who is qualified and free of delusions.

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