We constantly have the back and forth debate over pro-choice or pro-life. You hear the arguments from one side and then you hear the arguments from another. Both standpoints have its strengths and weaknesses. However, I am pro-control. I am for women having control of their bodies and their personal lives. I am pro-birth control.
In the past, birth control has been associated with some rather negative connotations among certain social organizations. I would argue that contraceptives have been employed by society for thousands of years. The Egyptians employed rather unhygienic tactics, but they did it nonetheless. From the Egyptians to the Romans and the Greeks to colonial times, society has searched for a way to combat unwanted pregnancies. This is not a practice that has surfaced over the past 50 years.
With this in mind, I began to wonder why there was such a stigma with birth control, even in today’s society. In my fiction writing class, I recently read a short story by Susan Minot, titled “Lust.” The story seems to be a collection of either journal entries or thoughts into the exploits of a young and impressionable girl. While the narrator describes being away at a boarding school, she made the rather interesting comment, “The joke was that the school doctor gave out the pill like aspirin. He didn’t ask you anything.” This comment left me feeling uneasy because the story is centered on a girl who gets around.
Here in lies my argument. The pill is not meant to be abused. I feel that if a woman is going to start taking the pill, she must do it for the right reasons. To me, birth control is a responsibility. It is an incredibly adult way of saying, “I am taking control of this aspect of my life, not so I can sleep around, but so I can protect myself.”
Well, this past summer, the Supreme Court felt differently. According to Time magazine, the Supreme Court ruled that some CEOs of some profit-making corporations could have the right to deny their female employee’s coverage for their birth control based on the CEOs personal objections. These objections will stand even if they are not supported by science or medicine. To me, I believe this opens the door to give corporations the green light to interfere with private health decisions of employees. Time also reported that approximately 99 percent of women in the U.S. will take birth control at some point in their lives. Annually, women will also dole out around $600 a year to pay for their birth control.
While the Affordable Care Act still remains in place, only 30 million women in the U.S. have access to this health care. According to the 2010 U.S. Census, there are approximately 156, 964, 212 women living in the U.S. This means that only 5.2 percent of the female population in the U.S. has access to the health benefits of the Affordable Care Act. Teenhelp.com reported that, last year, around 820,000 teen girls gave birth in the U.S. The government spent around $7 billion to support the costs of this.
Birth control is a necessity for our society. It is not dirty and it is not an excuse. Women in this country should stand up to fight for their rights on this topic. The government has no right to control our bodies.