Planned Parenthood Affiliates of Ohio released their monthly Thanks and Spanks today. The organization's cheers and jeers go to two groups or individuals who have made a difference in reproductive rights, either good or bad.
Thanks to Congressman Tim Ryan
for his outstanding work to make
prescription birth control affordable!
This month, Congress sent President Obama the FY09 Omnibus Appropriations package (HR 1105), which included language that lets drug companies offer Affordable Birth Control to all Planned Parenthood health centers, as well as other family planning clinics and university-based health centers. The language in the bill supporting Affordable Birth Control was held in place because of a short list of Congressional leaders, including Tim Ryan.
The high price of prescription birth control has historically been subsidized by drug companies that reduce costs to non-profit clinics. In 2005, George W. Bush ended drug companies' ability to make such donations. Because of the legislation supported by Congressman Ryan, clinics will now be able to help students and low-income women choose the method of birth control that's right for them, regardless of cost. This will result in literally millions of women being able to prevent unintended pregnancies without making impossible economic sacrifices in these turbulent times.
for their email action alert against
Comprehensive Sex Ed
Citizens for Community Values is at it again. They contacted their members last week with an email alert to warn them about the dangers of teaching students how to make wise, educated decisions when it comes to sexual activity. To make their point, they depended on a combination of ignorance, homophobia, and lies.
What did CCV say about Comprehensive Sex Education?
CCV LIE: It is mandatory education.
TRUTH: Comprehensive Sex Education in public schools takes place with the permission of parents. Any parent who does not want their child in a program may remove them without penalty.
CCV LIE: It stresses condom use.
TRUTH: It stresses Abstinence. It includes condom education because teaching Abstinence-Only has been shown time and again to be a failed policy.
CCV LIE: It is pro-abortion.
TRUTH: No Sex Education program is "pro-abortion." Comprehensive Sex Education exists to prevent unintended pregnancies.
CCV LIE: It treats homosexuality as normal.
TRUTH: It treats homosexuality as reality. It discusses homosexuality for two reasons. First, as an attempt to teach tolerance to our children. Second, because homosexual students attend public schools, too.
CCV LIE: It pays lip service to abstinence as one approach to the prevention of sexually transmitted diseases.
TRUTH: If by "lip service" they mean "teaches the benefits of Abstinence," then yes, Comprehensive Sex Education teaches students that Abstinence is the only guaranteed way to prevent getting STD's.
CCV LIE: It concentrates on presumption and management of sexual activity.
TRUTH: It understands the existence of sexual activity because sexual activity happens, with or without Sex Education.
They refer to Comprehensive Sex Education as "damaging, unethical and medically inaccurate." What is really damaging, unethical, and medically inaccurate is the refusal of the abstinence-only movement to recognize that some young people are already sexually active and that they need accurate information to make healthy and wise decisions.
The Dayton Police have arrested more HIV positive sex workers than any year prior. The Dayton Daily News also reported an increase of 12 HIV-positive sex workers from “less than a handful” in 2006 and 2007, police said.
Now that the economy is in turmoil and more people are likely to turn to the Oldest Profession to make ends meet what are we doing to help inform people of the very real dangers of unprotected sex? Sex workers (and their customers) engaging in unprotected sex is a freeway for HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases to spread and overwhelm a community. Education and CONDOMS (contrary to the Pope’s belief) must be accessible to everyone and most especially high risk populations in order to gain control of this epidemic and save lives in the process.
What do you think?
Planned Parenthood Affiliates of Ohio
and NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio
invite you to attend
Lobby Day 2009
Wednesday, April 22nd
9am - 4:30pm
65 S. Fourth Street, Columbus OH 43215
Meet at the YWCA (map) for a brief training before heading to the Statehouse to meet with legislators. You should attend if you care about these issues:
- Protecting our Reproductive Rights
- Guaranteeing rape survivors access to emergency contraception in emergency rooms
- Requiring insurance companies to cover prescription birth control
- Providing our public school students with information to make wise decisions as they become sexually active.
Yesterday, the FDA approved the FC2, a new, cheaper version of the Female Condom. This is good news because a large percentage of FC users are very poor women in Africa who receive contraceptives through the UN. If the UN gets condoms cheaper, then they can provide more condoms to more women. This development is a great advancement towards reducing AIDS in Africa, as well as giving all women one more option in preventing pregnancies.
Ah, Michael Steele, we hope you last.
No other chairman of the GOP has captured headlines like Michael Steele. From questions over the motive of matching the race of one party leader with another, to being featured in Stephen Colbert Rap Battles, this is political entertainment at it's finest.
Unfortunately, we don't think it's going to last. Steele did something that GOP honchos are normally prohibited from doing: he made comments in favor of allowing women to make decisions about their reproductive rights. To a reporter.
Steele appeared in an online blog run by GQ. (Embarrassing full disclosure: I'm a subscriber.)
In the interview with Lisa DePaulo, Steele said this:
Q: How much of your pro-life stance, for you, is informed not just by your Catholic faith but by the fact that you were adopted?
Oh, a lot. Absolutely. I see the power of life in that—I mean, and the power of choice! The thing to keep in mind about it… Uh, you know, I think as a country we get off on these misguided conversations that throw around terms that really misrepresent truth.
The choice issue cuts two ways. You can choose life, or you can choose abortion. You know, my mother chose life. So, you know, I think the power of the argument of choice boils down to stating a case for one or the other.
Are you saying you think women have the right to choose abortion?
Yeah. I mean, again, I think that’s an individual choice.
That's right: the head of the Republican Party, which has an official anti-choice platform voted by their members, thinks that abortion is a personal choice for women to make. He said it in a very wishy-washy way that's sure to annoy individuals on both sides of the issue, but these comments are clear. Steele believes in individual freedom in making personal medical decisions.
We give him three months.
Anti-choice activists like to deny it, but everyone that works for abortion providers wants to reduce the number of abortions that happen. How and why that happens is where pro-choice and anti-choice activists part ways.
One method of reducing abortions in teens, Parental Involvement laws, were recently proven to be ineffective. The Guttmacher Institute announced a study (.pdf) that shows that requiring parental approval of abortions for minors actually places many of those girls at a greater risk of assault when forced to tell their parents.
"Most teens—regardless of whether or not they live in a state with a parental involvement law— do involve their parents when deciding whether to have an abortion. But the reality is you can’t legislate good parent-child communication,” says Amanda Dennis, project manager at Ibis Reproductive Health and lead author of the review. “If we want to protect young women’s health and safety, access to confidential reproductive health services—both contraception and abortion—is critical."The study also explains that most teens who seek abortions do involve their parents in the decision, regardless of legal requirements.
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