Just another liberal myth. Anti-Abortion Does NOT Equal Anti-Contraception

Slate’s allegedly feminist site peddals the myth that attempts to demonize anti-abortionists:

The anti-choice movement’s hostility towards contraception is an open secret; most people on both sides of the debate know about it, but anti-choice activists also know better than to flaunt their hatred of contraception when trying to woo people on the issue of abortion.

 OK, this impression/myth/assertion frustrates me to no end.  I’m a life-long Catholic; I live in a very conservative part of the country; my family is very pro-life.  I have literally never met ANYone who is actually against contraception.  My mother, who is a single issue voter and completely single minded on the subject, had her tubes tied and has never expressed any objections to my use of the pill (and believe me, she would). 

I’ve met a few people who assert that it is not the choice for them and practice natural family planning (which, with modern science, is actually just barely under the pill in success-rates).  But, even in my (Catholic) pre-marital counseling, they only suggested NFP; they said that it was a choice, not a sin, to decide against it. 

 The only places that I have ever seen stories against birth control use come from leftist or “feminist” writers who are anxious to characterize anti-abortionists as “anti-choice” (my choice is the pill, thanks) or to paint every last person who values life as a clinic bomber.  

(This is, as I’m sure you know, but I’m guessing that Slate’s readers will conveniently not notice, not to say that anti-contraception-ists do not exist, only that they are extremely rare and not in any way representative of the anti-abortion movement in general, to the point that they are simply not worth worrying about.)

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11 Responses

  1. Oh, but it does, Lyssa! Barrier method contraceptives thwart the will of God and are not to be used. Chemical contraceptives (the Pill) have abortifacients which will prevent a fertilized egg from attaching to the uterus. The fertilized egg is a live human, so this is intrinsically wrong. Contraception is certainly a choice we have, but understanding the unitive and procreative aspects of marital sex would show you how any sex act which is not open to life is wrong.
    So I guess I’m saying that we should not have sex before marriage, and in marriage we should have sex with the understanding that life will possibly be conceived. Since you already understand that NFP is almost as good as the pill, you should be willing to go so far as to practice it….God bless!

  2. “I have literally never met ANYone who is actually against contraception.”

    The air you breath must indeed be rarefied for reality to follow your personal experience so closely.

    Or perhaps it does not.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/4081276.stm

    http://atheism.about.com/od/popejohnpaulii/a/contraception.htm

    http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/124445.php

    The google-fu was incredibly rough; I had to type out pope *and* contraception to find out that both abortion and contraception are ‘bad bad bad’ for people according to the Church.

    Here is the abortion issue in humanist terms. 🙂
    http://deadwildroses.wordpress.com/2009/10/16/the-abortion-debate-settled/

    • Arbourist, did you read my post beyond the line that you quote? I certainly did not claim that the Vatican is pro- contraception, I’m well aware of where they stand. I merely explained that this is, in conservative American Catholics and other anti-abortion sorts, an extremely rare view, to the point that it is not worth worrying about in any practical manner.

      Double X and other “feminist” outfits would like to you to believe they are nearly one in the same, in order to dismiss them out of hand rather than engage them on the issues, because they know that they could lose when you start looking at the innocent life at stake.

      Re: your link. I read it, and I recommend that you read my post above this one for a related perspective. I’ll add that, if the fetus is a human being, its rights are equal to the woman, not below it. Your post made it sound as if the baby was imposed on the woman, not that she accepted the risk that it would come there willingly, as is the case in most situations.

      • “because they know that they could lose when you start looking at the innocent life at stake.”

        That is not a tenable position to take. It does not work that way. About 1/3 to a 1/2 of eggs are never properly implanted/fertilized/etc. They are simply flushed out with the menses, literally millions of lives, gone. Do you mourn for the innocent lives in this case and feel like they also have a right to life? Because innocent life is innocent life is it not? … or is it only innocent life when a woman makes a choice about what is going on in her uterus? If you wish to decry abortion, you must also decry and take *more* action on this genocide that is happening on a far, far greater scales. Not doing so, makes your position on life inconsistent and somewhat incoherent. See the full argument here.

        “I’ll add that, if the fetus is a human being, its rights are equal to the woman, not below it. Your post made it sound as if the baby was imposed on the woman, not that she accepted the risk that it would come there willingly, as is the case in most situations.

        I would propose that the woman is a human being involved in a parasitical relationship with another within the confines of her body. Therefore, as it is her body, her nutrients and her oxygen being used she can do whatever she wishes to her body, in context of being pregnant. The status of the fetus is irrelevant, if you do not want to marginalize the mothers’ rights and status as an autonomous human being.

        A woman either has ownership of her body, or she does not. If she does not then she is merely an incubator whose rights are trumped by another undeveloped life inside her. I would like to think that women do have self-ownership and the right to say what goes on inside their bodies, as opposed to giving up their rights as a human being once they become pregnant.

        A common response is that a woman ‘chooses’ to become pregnant, and therefore is responsible for her choice. My rejoinder is simple, if a woman can choose to become pregnant, she can also choose to become un-pregnant. If this choice does not exist, then she really does not have *any* autonomy over what goes on in her body and therefore, as stated earlier, merely an unwilling, coerced, incubator of the state.

        I would like to think that in this part of the world we were finished with the rather repugnant ideas of people being regarded as chattel or slaves, but devaluing women and threatening their autonomy is a certainly a step in that direction.

        • “About 1/3 to a 1/2 of eggs are never properly implanted/fertilized/etc. They are simply flushed out with the menses, literally millions of lives, gone.”

          At least 1 million people die of malaria each year. 114 people die in car accidents in the U.S. each day. 28,000 infants die each year.

          Do you sit around and cry about these things? They’re sad when you think about them, but, unless I happen to be watching a public service message, they rarely cross my mind. Doesn’t make it wrong when someone causes death to happen on purpose, though.

          I completely disagree with the rest of your argument. You are still presupposing that the woman has greater human rights than the fetus. Imagine this: I am giving you a ride in my car. It’s my car, I have full rights and autonomy to use it. I didn’t have to allow you in my car, but I did for whatever reason. But, once it’s moving, I realize that I didn’t actually want you in my car, but they’re no where to stop and let you out. Can I open the door and give you a push? By your logic, if I cannot, you are a parasite and I am a slave to you (and the state) until the trip is over.

          It’s not devaluing to women to say that we cannot take life that we knowingly took the risk of allowing into our care. We are mature and intelligent enough to understand how babies are made, and what pregnancy entails. Nine months is not that long a time period if you realize that you didn’t actually want the results of your actions. Nature is unfair, but it is what it is. Killing to make things more fair is not a moral alternative.

          • I completely disagree with the rest of your argument. You are still presupposing that the woman has greater human rights than the fetus.

            When the fetus band together and form a solid voting block then perhaps we can speak of rights. You use the idea that our relation to people dying makes a difference, not the actual life itself. So why make the special case for fetuses? Dead is dead, via malaria as you point out or abortion. Both are preventable deaths (via spraying, nets or anti-malaria meds). A relational stance on ‘life’ is not particularly moral either.

            By your logic, if I cannot, you are a parasite and I am a slave to you (and the state) until the trip is over.

            I would certainly protest if I could not rid myself of a free rider when I chose to do so.

            We are mature and intelligent enough to understand how babies are made, and what pregnancy entails.

            This is a generalization, as many women are neither mature nor intellectually developed (insert abstinence education foible here)enough to make that decision.

            Nine months is not that long a time period if you realize that you didn’t actually want the results of your actions.

            The possibility of suffering, complications and possibly death stemming from a pregnancy are all legitimate concerns and should not be taken for granted.

            Killing to make things more fair is not a moral alternative.

            Capital punishment, war of any sort is also off the table as it would be unjustified. Are you as committed to stopping the war in Afghanistan and Iraq and ending the States murder of prisoners or is that also a relational contingency like malaria and car accidents?

  3. David, I’m afraid that I’m not sure that you have any idea what you are talking about. The pill prevents eggs from being fertilized (by preventing the woman from ovulating); it does nothing to an already fertilized egg.

    I have no idea where you got the idea I was discussing marital verses non-marital relationships. I said no such thing. Although I did not say it, I do believe that having intercourse should mean that you are accepting the risk of pregnancy, although I also think that adoption is an excellent option if raising a child is not the best choice.

    As I said in my post, I make a choice to use the pill, because that is easier for me for personal reasons, and I don’t wish to have to schedule my sex life. I’ve used other methods in the past. Why should my understanding that it is one of several effective choices mean that I should use it? My understanding (as well as pretty much everyone else’s) is that the injections, patches, and rings are also as effective; I simply choose not to use them for various reasons.

  4. Lyssa, you’re right-about some pills. Some work after the fact. http://www.lifesitenews.com/abortiontypes/pillabortion_types.html

    Your last paragraph shows that you are willing to ignore the will of God in order for you to have a sex life on your terms. If you are a life-long Catholic you will know that the very definition of sin is to go against the will of God. Simple enough.

    I’m not condemning you, by any means, but I do want you to be informed. God bless.

    • Lysssa, do you really (really?) take David’s arguments seriously? Do you really think there is a magical sky-fairy that on one hand has created the entire universe, aaaand at the same time also is crazy uptight bonkers if you use birth control?

      I’m not condemning you, by any means, but I do want you to be informed. [super duper head-desking irony] *god bless*.

      LoL David…you’re not condemning her…no your just telling her that by your interpretation of your magic book she gets to go to hell. How perfectly dreadful. Can you feel the love and how decidedly inclusive religion can be?

      If you are in the delusional camp with David, Lyssa please disregard all of my posts her.

      Rational debate is not an option with the religiously-addled. My apologies.

      I am sorry for wasting your time.

      • David is just another know-it-all atheist who thinks that he is better than the 90%+ of the American population who believe in a creator. I’ve seen them plenty before; they’re incapable of rational argument because they are just so darn full of themselves (Of course, if you literally think that 90% of the people you encounter on a daily basis are morons, how could you ever be a psychologically healthy person)? (Because you have argued in substance, I am hoping that you don’t fall into the same camp, although your snarky comments at the end suggest that you may).

        So, no, I don’t take anything he says seriously, I know that he’s trying to make fun of me for some reason, but thought that I should rebut it just to be clear.

        As for me, as I mentioned in my post, I am a Catholic. I hope that you are not stating that I am incapable of rational thought, because that is a pretty extreme position to take about the, again, 90%+ of the population that believe in some form of religion. Of course, as you should be able to tell from my post, that played no real role in my discussion; I mentioned it only to show the nature of my experiences with people who are against abortion, and that they did not display an attitude against contraception. Although I like to learn what others believe, I care little for religious debate, religion is too deeply personal. I don’t beleive that God gets mad at birth control pills (obviously, or I wouldn’t use them), but I do believe He’s out there in some form.

        • 90%+ of the American population who believe in a creator

          The figure is a bit less than what you state. It is inconsequential when arguing anyways, as 90% of the population could be wrong.

          I am hoping that you don’t fall into the same camp, although your snarky comments at the end suggest that you may

          I hope not to be categorized along with David in his special place. However, my mea culpa in the earlier post was to intended to give a possible end to the conversation if it was about to be wreaked upon the shoals of faith.

          I hope that you are not stating that I am incapable of rational thought, because that is a pretty extreme position to take

          I fully appreciate your ability to engage in rational thought, consider the phenomena of dual magisteria. I have trouble though when people make claims that carry the same weight as “I believe in the Easter Bunny” to take very seriously.

          I don’t believe that God gets mad at birth control pills (obviously, or I wouldn’t use them), but I do believe He’s out there in some form.

          One would hope that you could make these decisions on the basis of your rational and feelings alone rather than being co-founded on the needs of a mystical being of one sort or another.

          Being under constant panoptical observation by a “Big Brother/Sister” seems a very unappealing proposition to me.

          It is heartening that you do have the courage to go against some of the more ghastly doctrines of the catholic church.

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