Editorial: Freedom to free female birth control – pro v. con

Feature Photo By: Vanessa GuerecaSenior Hannah Metzger poses with a birth control pill on her tongue. It is estimated that over 62% of  women between the ages of 12 and 49 use some form of birth control, most of whom feel they will be effected by President Donald Trump’s executive action to eliminate free birth control, according to polls. 

PRO
By: Hannah Metzger, Review Staff

Since President Donald Trump’s inauguration on January 20th, the majority of the country has been living in fear. In the short amount of time Trump has been President, he has already signed various executive actions including some in regards to enhancing border security, prioritizing the construction of the highly controversial Dakota Access Pipeline, and barring citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries from entering the United States (for 90 days).

Among the rest of these dangerous and destructive actions, Trump has also begun his journey towards robbing the American women of the right to control their fertility.

According to Fox News, Trump has issued an executive order aimed at “rolling back” Obamacare. Since Obamacare was passed through Congress, this cannot change the law; however, the House of Representatives has approved a budget allowing Congress to “repeal parts of the Affordable Care Act.”

This repeal of the Affordable Care Act would place a substantial burden on tens of thousands of women in the U.S. Over 67% of insured women receive free birth control through the ACA (obamacarefacts.com) who may now be forced to pay up to $50 a month for their prescriptions.

Losing free birth control would severely damage the freedom and quality of life for millions of American women in the following ways:

  • Losing access to birth control completely – It must be understood that many women simply cannot afford to pay an extra $50 a month for birth control – especially women who are very young or living in poverty. It’s these women who will suffer the most from the repeal because, if they can’t afford to pay for birth control, they certainly cannot afford a pregnancy.
  • Increase in dangerous abortions – The abolishment of free birth control and, therefore, the decrease in the use of birth control will logically lead to an increase in abortions. Being that Trump is attempting to illegalize safe abortions, this will trigger the return of “back alley abortions” which severely endangering and often injuring the women desperate enough to resort to them.
  • Impairing the overall health of countless women – Another notable element of the birth control debate is that women do not only use birth control for sex. Birth control can be used to treat acne, reduce the length and severity of menstruation, stop cramps, regulate estrogen levels, and so on.

Birth control is a medical necessity, not a sexual luxury.

I myself have been on the birth control pill since I was 13 years old because of medical issues and, without the ACA, would not be able to pay for it upon entering college next year.

The use and distribution of free birth control is necessary and highly beneficial to our society as a whole. We need free birth control to protect women living in poverty from being burdened with a pregnancy that they cannot afford; we need free birth control to prevent dangerous abortions from becoming a societal norm once again; we need free birth control because it represents more than sex, it represents the women of America’s right to control their body, their health, and their fertility.

In Colorado, long-acting birth controls have been free and easily accessible to women for over seven years. According to the New York Times, since this experiment began, “the birth rate among teenagers across the state plunged by 40 percent from 2009 to 2013, while their rate of abortions fell by 42 percent… There was a similar decline in births for another group particularly vulnerable to unplanned pregnancies: unmarried women under 25 who have not finished high school.”

From these statistics alone it is clear that free birth control is the best decision for America’s women.

However, the removal of free birth control is not the only upcoming attack to women’s rights. As mentioned before, Trump and the rest of the Republican party have also expressed their intention of illegalizing abortion. This action, in particular, is absurd.

Abortion has been legal in the United States, and rightfully so, since Roe v. Wade in 1973. Not only does the President simply not have the power to overturn a Supreme Court decision, but there’s also no reasonable argument for illegalizing abortion in the first place.

Abortion is a necessity and an important procedure that has saved the lives of countless women trapped by unwanted pregnancies and prevented numerous children from being born only to be neglected, not properly provided for, or sent to rot in the already overcrowded foster system.  

In most states, it is legal to receive an abortion only before 24-26 weeks of pregnancy; although, according to abort73.com, 89-92% of all abortions occur before the first trimester (12 weeks). At this time, it is physically impossible for the fetus to survive outside of the mother’s body because of the immaturity of its organs. Therefore, at the time an abortion is performed the fetus is simply a part of the woman’s body that she may do with as she pleases.

Abortion should be legal, birth control should be free, and the women of American cannot allow one corrupt and sexist President to destroy decades of progress towards women’s rights.

In this frightening time for the United States, it is essential that society continues to move forward regarding women’s reproductive rights, not backward.

 

CON
By: Dennae Pigford, Review Staff

I wish to start off this article by stating very clearly that on a personal level, I am completely pro-choice and believe that birth control should be readily available, for whatever reason, to women everywhere.

I choose to write why these items or choices should be illegal in sight of our newly elected President commonly expressing that he believes in making them illegal. Now before you scream and shout and throw a fit, read on and try and find out why someone would believe this way.

Take a step down from your moral high chair and into someone else’s shoes; class is in session.

Many people have expressed that abortion is murder and that no one should have the right to take away someone else’s right to live before they even get the chance to experience life. Medically, abortions are only legal at a certain time in a pregnancy; before the fetus has developed enough to be considered a human.

According to whattoexpect.com, in 19 states, the restrictions are based on the “viability” of the fetus, or its ability to live outside the womb (typically between 22 and 24 weeks of gestation). Twenty-two states impose prohibitions after a certain number of weeks (15 of them putting that limit at 22 weeks of pregnancy).

Now, opposing abortions at any state could be due to religion, upbringing, and even something so far as race. Many cultures believe abortion to be so sinful as to be punishable by exile or even death.

With many reasons to get an abortion comes many reasons not to get one. If you can lay down and make a baby, you can stand up and be a mother. If you have the money to party and go out, you have the money for diapers. Don’t title it rape if it wasn’t and if it was, show the world you are strong enough to stand through anything it can throw at you. Have a baby and build a village.

As of 2014, about 60% of women having abortions were in their 20s; 59% had one or more children; 86% were unmarried; 75% were economically disadvantaged; and 62% reported a religious affiliation, according to guttmacher.com. It takes two to tango and two to have a baby. I’m sure that if money was your reason for ending a life before it began that you could find a decent way to make money and take care of a child. Not everything has to be expensive, and not everything has to be designer.

Be a teen mom, not a teen murderer.

Giving life chance and a choice to make is better than holding a small peanut-esque ball of what could’ve been. So your birth control failed. Stop making excuses and start making plans. It’s not your body; it’s theirs. You are just their current living situation and to be thrust from the warmth that you know and to be murdered could be of a greater tragedy than that of getting pregnant.

Nine months: nine months to get a job, nine months to figure out who’s on your side, nine months to realize that abortion isn’t an option.

If you let our new leader’s beliefs and executive orders haunt you and cause you to make a worse choice than whose life are you actually caring about? The selfishness that lies behind the act is arguable.

I may not have these beliefs or be against abortion, but that gives me no right to block out this side of the story. Educate yourself on something below your liberal high horses.

As for birth control, people who don’t believe in it shouldn’t have to pay for it in their insurance policies. For example, a business owner who doesn’t believe in birth control will still have to pay for it monthly so the female employees underneath their plan can get something they don’t condone for free.

Whatever the reason to oppose birth control, (be it it’s unnaturality or even a bad experience with the product) making everyone have to pay out of pocket for it would make its distribution easier. Perhaps the products would be cheaper when having to cut out the middleman.

Free birth control with health insurance is like saying you can eat free if you pay 100 dollars for the receipt. Many people don’t even use birth control so why pay for it for yourself or even for others.

You shouldn’t rely on a pill to avoid pregnancy or even to shorten or lighten a period. There are natural ways and other preventative measures to take to live your life.

I myself, even, have birth control. Not in the typical pill form, but birth control nonetheless. You will never be able to please everyone no matter what decision you make, but I don’t think you should be ridiculed if you are opposed to birth control or even abortion.

The legality or freeness of these acts/products are all personal affairs but remember class; there’s always two sides to every story.

 

For more information on abortion and birth control (either against or for the arguments), visit these sites:

https://www.bpas.org/abortion-care/considering-abortion/abortion-faqs/  -commonly asked questions about abortion.

https://prochoice.org/education-and-advocacy/about-abortion/abortion-facts/  -factual abortion information

https://www.plannedparenthood.org/learn/birth-control?utm_source=NativeRankPPC&utm_medium=CPC&utm_campaign=AuroraBC&gclid=CjwKEAiAoOvEBRDD25uyu9Lg9ycSJAD0cnByuoGgc6M7NRRasMiCbUr1xkLG84HQGo3M8y7R44f4xhoCdPfw_wcB    -birth control methods, facts, and awareness

https://www.womenshealth.gov/a-z-topics/birth-control-methods   -commonly asked questions about birth control