A Wall Street Journal article titled “The Birth-Control Riddle” appeared earlier this week in anticipation of the 50th anniversary next month of the introduction of the birth control pill in the U.S.
After referring to the inception of the Pill as “the dawn of dependable contraception”, the author, Melinda Beck, gives an overview of the various contraceptive options now on the market, and goes on to note that nearly half of all pregnancies are unintended — essentially the same as in 1994 — and that “smaller studies have found that even newer birth-control methods haven’t made much of a dent.”
48% of unintended pregnancies, Beck points out, involve contraceptive failure.
She also notes this:
And many young people are in “the fog zone” in which their beliefs about pregnancy don’t match their behaviors, according to a 2009 report by the National Campaign to End Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy. In a survey conducted by the Guttmacher Institute of 1,800 single men and women aged 18 to 29, more than 80% of both sexes said it was important to them to avoid pregnancy right now, yet 43% of those who are sexually active said they used no contraception or used it inconsistently.
So much for the glories ushered in since “the dawn of dependable contraception”.
Christina Dunigan points out that a lot of the dot-connecting here can be attributed to risk compensation, the commonsense explanation that observes that people generally behave more cautiously as their perception of risk or danger increases — and, conversely, that they tend to behave less cautiously as their perception of feeling “safe” or “protected” increases.
Couple risk compensation and ubiquitous condoms, pills, and other contaceptives, and it’s no surprise that today’s unintended pregnancy rates and abortion rates (to say nothing of the STD rates) are where they are.
There are a number of problems with the article — such as Beck’s claim that “the pill does not seem to increase the risk of getting [breast cancer],” despite the fact that the American Cancer Society admits it does — but its most glaring deficiency is its treatment of contraception as a great social good with only a few minor drawbacks that have yet to be smoothed out.
Nowhere is the question raised that maybe, just maybe, contraception itself might be A Really Bad Thing.
When the Pro-Life Action League hosted its groundbreaking Contraception Is Not the Answer conference in September 2006, Eric Scheidler mentioned in his introductory remarks that in today’s world, telling people they shouldn’t use contraception is akin to telling them they shouldn’t use soap.
So widespread is the acceptance of contraception today that it’s not surprising that those of us who oppose it would not register even a passing mention in an article on the topic in the mainstream media.
And this is precisely why, now more than ever, we must tell the truth about contraception.
League Reissues “Contraception Is Not the Answer” CDs
The 8 fascinating presentations given at the CINTA conference examine the various ways in which contraception has impacted society—its effect on women, on men, on marriage, on the culture—and show that contraception is the taproot of abortion.
Conference highlights include Jennifer Roback-Morse on the cultural contradictions of contraception for women, Dr. Janet Smith on how contraceptives alter intimate relationships, Fr. Tom Euteneuer on the spiritual effects of contraceptive use, and Rutgers University sociologist Dr. Lionel Tiger on the impact of contraceptives on men and masculinity.
In the wake of the conference, the CDs were in great demand, and our supply was quickly sold out. But with the fawning treatments we can expect from the media in the coming weeks marking the 50th anniversary of the Pill, we’ve decided to reissue them.
Order yours today. You won’t be disappointed!