The Contraception Contradiction

I won't go on a man-hating rant in this post... but following up on yesterday's post/discussion on birth control, society and what it's like to be single as a Catholic these days, this article struck home (plus, the author went to UW-Madison with me, so it has to be good!)

More proof that 1. Taxpayer-financed birth control isn't working to lower abortion rates; 2. Abortion will not end until contraception ends.
New York City is the abortion capital of America. More than 40 percent of pregnancies in New York City end in abortion (excluding miscarriages), nearly twice the national rate. The abortion rate among the city’s black residents is a jaw-dropping 60 percent. In 2009, New York City saw more than 87,000 abortions—one roughly every six minutes.

Responding to questions about the city’s high abortion rate, Deborah Kaplan, deputy commissioner of NYC's Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, told Crain’s business journal, “To me, the problem is access. If we improved access to contraceptives, there would be a reduction in abortion.”

Quinn and Kaplan were echoing the conventional wisdom about the relationships between contraception, unintended pregnancy, and abortion. The theory holds that since most abortions are the result of unintended pregnancies, efforts to reduce unintended pregnancies will reduce the number of abortions. And since contraceptives can reduce the number of unintended pregnancies, expanding access to contraceptives will lower the abortion rate.

But that logic has not worked very well in practice. If New York City is the abortion capital of America, it is also the contraceptive capital of America. Free or low-cost birth control is available through dozens of publicly-funded programs at more than 200 places throughout New York state, most of them in New York City and its suburbs.

The city’s health department distributes a pocket-size guide showing teenagers where they can get low-cost or free contraception, information that is also available on the city’s 311 phone and Internet hotlines. New York City hands out three million free condoms every month at thousands of venues. The city even has its own brand of condoms, NYC Condoms.
Read the rest at Catholic World Report.

Wisconsin hands out $18 million annually in state and federal taxpayer funds to Planned Parenthood for birth control. STD infection rates are extremely high, teenage pregnancy in Milwaukee ranks in the highest in the nation, and you have Gwen Moore telling Congress that abortion is better for a poor baby than a lifetime spent eating Ramen noodles. Abortion will end when society's addiction to contraception does.


  1. The Ramen Noodles people should honestly be talking to their legal team about this.

  2. Anon... I need to get "the" Badger Catholic to do a button where you can like a comment.

  3. Thanks VA!

    This is a great blog but the comment system is kind of a drag (blogspots fault, not "the" Badgers of course)

  4. Rumor has it the blog will be moving to Word Press sooner than later.

  5. I think the Ramen Noodles comment actually came from US Rep. Gwen Moore (D-Milwaukee).....nonetheless the comment is startling and still irks me when I read it!

  6. Abortions will end as soon as every woman and man (this includes our teens in school) has easy access to affordable, easy to use, contraceptives AND is also educated early on with age-appropriate, scientifically accurate information about how to avoid unintended pregnancies and sexually transmitted infections. How will ignorance ever solve our embarrassingly high teen pregnancy rates? Not making contraceptives available is not a solution.

  7. Hey Anon, teens in school have access to free birth control, without their parents' knowledge. Clearly NOT WORKING. Notice the title?

  8. Ok, let me get this straight. No contraceptive is 100% effective, meaning, according to statistics, every year 15-20 out of every 100 women using condoms, 1-10/100 women on hormones, and a bunch more from the less effective sponges, diaphragms, withdrawal, etc., get pregnant. Considering statistics show 62% of the 62 million women in the U.S. (the study looked at all women, mind you, not just the currently sexually active ones) use contraceptive methods, that's statistically hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of pregnancies to women who did not want to become pregnant, hence their use of contraception. The standard solution for unwanted pregnancies? Abortion. So, tell me, how could anyone possibly think 12:47amAnon's comment makes logical sense, even if (s)he had read and disregarded everything in the article linked above? Where is the link between more contraceptives and fewer abortions? My head is in grave danger of exploding.


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