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Creating customers not cures - OTC birth control pills proposed

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
November 22nd, 2012
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Disregarding side effects, threats to life and other safety hazards, a group of doctors now says that birth control pills should be available over the counter, without a prescription. It is the latest sign of the ongoing moral erosion in the United States - as well as bad medicine.

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Birth control pills can have serious health side effects. There is now a growing concern over related staph infections. The carcinogenic effects of some of these pills has long been reported.

In addition, the use of some forms of chemical and device artificial birth control can cause human embryonic life to be killed before that human life can even be implanted in his or her mothers womb. 


In 1987, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith of the Holy See issued an "Instruction on the Respect for Human Life in its origin and on the Dignity of Procreation" 

Among the many questions it answered with absolute moral clarity was: "What Respect is due to the human embryo, taking into account his nature and identity?" The answer given by the Magisterium of the Catholic Church: "The human being must be respected - as a person - from the very first instant of his (her) existence."

In a 2008 Instruction on the Dignity of the Human Person, considering "Certain Bioethical Questions" we find a thorough treatment of many Bio-Ethical issues of the hour. We also find a simple insight which cuts right through the fog surrounding this matter:

"It must be noted, however, that anyone who seeks to prevent the implantation of an embryo which may possibly have been conceived and who therefore either requests or prescribes such a pharmaceutical, generally intends abortion."

Yet, some Doctors belonging to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) are suggesting that access to birth control should be made easier for everyone.

Unfortunately, this approach could also put the patient outside of a doctor's care, while making the pills more accessible to people with undetected health conditions and even teens who choose - or are forced to be sexually active.

The proposal would build upon the availability of the already sometimes deadly abortifacient known as the "morning-after pill" which is available over the counter without a prescription.

These Doctors who favor this approach say making the pills more available could reduce the number of unwanted pregnancies by as much as fifty percent. This would also, theoretically reduce abortions.

Yet, is this argument of utility the solution to the challenge?  The U.S. Federal Government unilaterally decided to define pregnancy as beginning at implantation not fertilization.

Additionally, birth control pills carry a risk of creating blood clots in women, hence part of the reason for a doctor's supervision. Also, women's gynecological care should always be managed with the expert help of a physician. Making these pills available over the counter removes this necessary layer of protection. Thus, this would not be an advancement for women, but rather a setback.

Naturally, the moral issue is the central issue. To become a doctor, one must declare a solemn oath to protect life. Following a course of action designed to prevent the implantation or formation of life, and to take a life which has been created, is a clear violation of this oath.

Some Doctors seek to circumvent this by claiming various doubletalk ideas as to when life begins.

The recommendation of over the counter availability also extends the notion that pregnancy is somehow a medical problem a disease or something "bad". Or, that new human life is an inconvenience, or something to be "managed" as part of a "health care plan."

However, pregnancy is natural, beautiful - and the reason you're here to read this article.

The proposal ignores safer alternatives to artificial means of birth regulation such as abstinence and natural family planning. In fact, both abstinence and natural family planning appear to have passed out of the national conversation in some medical circles, as though neither alternative existed, despite their medical efficacy and moral appropriateness. 

Of course, the medical-industrial complex doesn't seem so interested in developing affordable solutions and advocating morally responsible lifestyles. They seem to have little interest in alternatives to drugs. Instead, the focus appears to be on creating customers, which is precisely what the proposal by the ACOG would do.


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