Tuesday, April 10, 2012

The Contraception Debate

It seems recently that there was a huge debate on whether or not the Catholic Church should be made by the government to offer contraception through its medical plan. However, some people disagree with this idea just because they do not believe that contraception should be used at all due to religious views. However, I disagree with the Catholic Church on the fact that it is immoral and wrong to use contraception, however, I am not totally on the government's side either.

Before we put the carriage before the horse, we must first ask ourselves: What is contraception? By the books, it is any artificial means to prevent pregnancy. Most people when they hear the word contraception think of oral birth control (the pill) or even sometimes condoms. However, contraception can take the form of spermicides, which kill the sperm right on the spot, to an implantation ring in the woman to prevent ovulation, to a woman getting her tubes tied, or a man getting a vasectomy, which cuts part off the vasectomia, the tube that connects the testicles to the penis, and in doing so, ejaculation, or release of sperm cannot happen. Most of these methods are not one-hundred percent effective, but they do cut down on pregnancies by a considerable amount, and in most cases, they can be reversed, and the woman can still get pregnant when she so chooses.

So what if women use contraception, and so what if men use condoms? They can stop using those methods almost whenever, and most surgeries used to make sure people don't procreate are reversable.

The Catholic Church does not believe in the use of contraception do to the fact that inhibits the main use for sex: Procreating human life. After a major document called the Humanae Vitae(Human Life) was published by Pope Paul VI in 1968, the Catholic Church starting taking its stand against contraception. It stated that sex was for only creating human life, and any means that go against that is wrong. They also believe that the pleasure derived from sex is the pleasure that God gave us in order to create human life, and that the pleasure can help a married man and woman become closer in bondage ot each other and God.

I, for one, do believe in the use of contraception, especially oral contraception for women, if they are willing to use it. It helps cut down on unwanted pregnancy because let's face it, not everyone who has sex is actually capable of taking care of a child. It could prevent the baby from the unwanted pregnancy from growing up in an environment in which the parents can't take care of it, and it could save to parents financially, because lets face it, which would you rather do: pay about 40-50 dollars for contraception, or pay out thousands a year, taking care of a child, and giving up your free time? Now, I am not saying all pregnancies are bad; if you want to have a kid, then I support you full heartily, but as for those who don't, contraception is probably your best bet.

Even for those not sexually active, I still approve of women using the pill contraceptive due to the fact it can help with periods. It has been shown to reduce period cramp pains, and make periods lighter in women who took the pill. The reson being is the fact that the pill releases oestrogen and proestrogen, which help with periods. While these hormones help with period pain, they also can cause some problems, such as spotting between periods, and chances of worsening depression. However, despite this, the chances of any side effects happening is low, and the benefits are well worth it.

Another option for women is getting their tubes tied, which prevents the egg from entering the uterus. Women can still get a period, but they cannot have children while tubes are tied. This method actually has about a 99% pregnancy prevention rate, with the remaining one percent happening from scar tissue connecting the Fallopian tubes to the uterus causing the woman to get pregnant, and if she does get pregnant, and some of these will end an ectopic pregnancy, which means the sperm and egg do not unite in the uterus, usually in the Fallopian tubes, or even the ovarian cavity, where the eggs are stored. These pregnancies will usually end in miscarriage, and if not treated, can cause the death of the mother but can also lead to hemorrhaging. Tying a woman's tubes can increases these ectopic pregnancies, with chances of an ectopic pregnancy However, this is considered a permanent surgery, and even though it can be reversed, the fetility rates of the woman are incredibly low.

Contraception for a man, in some ways, be a little bit easier than contraception for a woman. They can use a condom, a piece of latex that wraps around the penis in order to prevent the sperm from entering the woman. However, there is almost no other contraception, except for withdrawal, which is the withdrawing of the penis before ejaculation,but that is not one-hundred percent effective. Also, there is no approved "male contraceptive pill," like there is a pill for women, and vasectomies are optional, but after getting it reversed, the fertility rates for men sink, but not as far as a woman getting her tubes tied, due the fact it can be reversed easier. The last resort for a man to become infertile is (men hold your balls) castration, however, this would render a man unable to have sex, and a practically useless form of sterilization.

I also do support birth control because is is our natural instinct to want to have sex during and after humans hit puberty. Our bodies start making the hormones needed for sex, and the ability to make children. However, since humans are a bit more complex than animals, we realize that having children too young is a bad thing, due to one: we don't have the means to take care of them, and two: it is frowned down upon society. Birth control allows us to act on our instincts without having to pay the price of having to carry a child for nine months, and perhaps can save the potential father a bunch of money in child support. For the social standard, we look down on sex because of religion, and also, I think that some people think that humans are above animals, so there for we don't have to follow our instinct, but we are animals, and we have those hormones.

With most birth control methods being reversible, then why are people against them? I think the reason why they are sometimes frowned upon is because of social customs. Birth control basically states that women can have sex with out getting pregnant, and in a society where virginity is sometimes valued, it can compromise those values. In most Christian societies, sex before marriage is considered a sin, and is looked upon as being forbidden, and especially Catholic Churches who lay heavily on that, it can be turned into a bad thing.

As I have stated before, the main use of contraception is to prevent men and women from making children, and this could be looked at potentially as "playing god." If you can prevent the creation of life, then you are wrong, due to the fact the act is supposed to be used for making children in the first place.

Another argument against contraception is that Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) can be more easily spread through out the human population due to an increase of casual sex. True, the pill does not protect against STIs, condoms can help prevent transmission of these infections, though success rate of stopping them is not one hundred percent. Adolescences and young adults up until age twenty-six can get a series of shots that helps prevent certain types of Human Papillomavirus (HPV) which cause cervical cancer and genital warts.

Overall, I see contraception as a necessary thing to society, due to the fact it can allow people to follow their natural instincts to have sex, and not pay the consequences of having children. Also, it can help you women regulate their periods, and with men it could enable them to have sex with out worrying about child support. It is a necessary evil in my mind, and it can benefit society. 

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