Other Health Issues Lost in Birth Control Debate

Article excerpt

Byline: Rebecca Hagelin, SPECIAL TO THE WASHINGTON TIMES

Culture challenge of the week: Women's health

The past few weeks have been alive with talk about the urgency of women's health. First came the Department of Health and Human Services' regulations mandating coverage of contraception and abortion-causing drugs, with little room for religious objection. President Obama spoke gravely - paying his dues to the pro-choice lobby - and announced that women would receive free coverage of contraception, sterilization and abortion-causing drugs, at no cost to them. No matter what.

All in the name of women's health.

To the pro-choice choir over at HHS, it mattered not that religious employers or those with conscientious objections to abortion-causing drugs would be required to pay for morally repugnant procedures. Their only song is an endless little ditty that proclaims that contraceptives and abortion benefit women's health.

Funny how the liberals rarely question that mantra. Few proponents of teen contraceptive use mention the health complications that may accompany early contraceptive use.

For example, according to the NIH's National Cancer Institute, women who contract HPV (an increasingly common sexually transmitted virus) quadruple their risk of cervical cancer if they've used oral contraceptives for more than five years, and young women who begin contraceptive use before the age of 20 also face increased risk of cervical cancer.

Oral contraceptives, such as Yaz, have been implicated by the FDA in causing a 75 percent increase in the risk of blood clots. And recent statistics put to rest the old argument that contraceptive use will reduce the rate of abortions: According to a 2011 report issued by the Guttmacher Institute, 54 percent of women who seek an abortion report they were using birth control in the month before they became pregnant.

In their haste to co-opt the field of women's health for the abortion industry, liberals gloss over vital information about risks and side effects often associated with contraceptives and abortion, particularly for teens.

And if they stomp on the First Amendment in the stampede for free birth control and abortifacients, well, so be it. Nothing is more important than the abortion agenda.

With the HHS mandate still in the headlines, next came the Komen fiasco. A charitable organization, the Susan G. Komen for the Cure foundation made a reasonable judgment - to avoid making grants to organizations under investigation and to prefer to give grants to direct providers of mammogram services rather than to organizations, such as Planned Parenthood, that simply refer women elsewhere for mammograms. …