Saturday , May 18 2024
Funny how all the contraceptive devices are women's responsibility, while men make the decisions about reproductive choices.

Reproductive Policies and Sexual Politics – How The Man Keeps Women Down

How can women be equal when their reproductive rights are being controlled by a male-dominated society?

The answer is they can’t.

The FDA’s continued refusal to pass the Morning After Pill for over-the-counter sales, despite being proven safe after extensive testing, is another example of politics sticking its unwelcome nose in a woman’s business.

While the United States is enforcing freedom and democracy around the globe, it is enslaving its own women domestically with antiquated and sexist reproductive policies.

The only reason that the Morning After Pill, also called Plan B, hasn’t been released for over-the-counter sales is pure puritanical prudishness. Of course, this isn’t the official policy of the FDA. Rather their stance is “because of concerns about whether young girls would be able to use it safely.” Um, if I read between the lines that means, “we don’t want to encourage women to have sex outside of marriage.”

Uh, yeah.

Why not hold up cholesterol-controlling drugs because we don’t want to encourage fat asses to eat more bacon and eggs? Oh wait, because that’s not a female-only issue having to do *sexuality*.

Oh, and don’t worry, they’re working on outlawing abortion too, so don’t get your ovaries all titillated. Don’t believe me, just ask the women of South Dakota.

What a duplicitous message we are sending young women in this country. On one hand they see images of scantily clad women engaging in sexual activity, but they rarely talk about the importance of making smart choices regarding their sexuality. Heck, some parents don’t even want schools teaching sex-ed to their kids. Then when young women subsequently end up pregnant, the ugly reality of reproduction rears its head. Society’s answer is “tough shit, honey,” that’s your problem. You should have thought of that before you dropped your skivvies. Never mind the sperm donor involved in the deed.


Why? Because men categorically have been taught that it’s okay to think with their libido first, because the consequences of pregnancy ultimately fall on the woman, and, let’s face it, women are where all the reproductive action is going on.

Look at the current methods of contraceptives out there. Birth control pills, hormonal implants, cervical caps, diaphragm, sponges, foams, spermicides, the IUD, and, last but not least, is tubal ligation. What do they all have in common? They are contraceptives for women only.

Pharmaceutical companies make the choices available of what women can use as contraceptives – choices of course that put all the responsibility on the woman; not to mention the side-effects and expense of using these products. We won’t go into the long-term effects of hormones on cancer rates, or the women who have been deformed or died using poorly designed contraceptives, such as the Dalkon Sheild.

There are exactly two forms of birth control that men are responsible for, condoms and vasectomies, and most men complain about these two options, making it still the woman’s responsibility to not wind up pregnant. Men don’t like the way condoms feel and are all squeamish about having their testes messed with. Preventing babies is women’s work.

Here’s a thought: why not create a device that works on men to make them stop whining about not getting enough sex, like perhaps a brain or something.

Men get to make all the decisions about our reproductive choices and yet they are the first to bitch and moan about abortions or the responsibilities of parenting. Oddly, these are the main options left up to the female to decide once all other options have failed. At least for now.

And you wonder why we have so many headaches.

About Dawn Olsen

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