Are the people at the Washington Post bragging that they’re jumping to bogus conclusions to push a political agenda? Or do they think we’re so dim that we won’t notice even when they wave a big sign in front of our faces?
And didn’t there used to be people whose job it was to throw articles like this in the trash before they appeared in print where everybody could see them and laugh at them?
The article seems to make a good start – after the obligatory reference to alarmed experts – by presenting us with an actual data point. This is an interesting data point – the use of contraception among women over 21 seems to have declined lately.
Why? You’ll search in vain for a statement of the reason. In fact, you get a direct admission about halfway down that the writer of the article and the people interviewed don’t really have the first clue as to why this is – “theories” include “gaps in sex education” (you’re kidding, right?), the “cost of birth control” (did it go up? If it’s constant, how would it explain a decline in its use?), “declining insurance coverage”, “fears of possible side effects of contraceptives” and “personal attitudes about childbearing” (!)
That’s right, folks, they can’t even tell us whether the number of people who are trying to conceive has changed! This right there is crucial information in determining whether a decline in birth control use is “alarming” or “completely expected”. And you’ll search in vain for any mention of whether all or part of the population interviewed is married, or whether the proportion of married women in the sample and in the population at large increased.
Here again – “The December report did not tabulate unintended pregnancies, though preliminary information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found a slight increase in the birth rate in 2003, most notably in women older than 30.” Are these people trying to confuse us by talking about unintended pregancies (by admitting they don’t have a fricking clue about them), then switching to the overall birth rate to point out an increase there? The quality of the propaganda is disappointing – is this the best they can do?
And yet, given such staggering ignorance, half the article consists of crap about uninsured Americans, abstinence education, ignorance about birth control, and other things that haven’t even been established as having anything at all to do with the purported subject of the article. Paul Blumenthal of Johns Hopkins even pushes the theory that “more women have found the cost of birth control burdensome.”
As compared to what? Having a baby? Are you kidding me? And look at this gem: “It is absolutely unconscionable that women have a co-pay of $20 or $25 [a month] for contraceptives and men are getting off scot-free”. Yes, it’s “unconscionable’ that people are buying birth control with their own frigging money! And the only way that men are getting off “scot-free” is if they’re not married to the woman (otherwise, they’re damn well chipping in for the cost), and in that case, she’s taking an awfully big risk of disease if her pills are the only protection used.
And finally, we see a quote suggesting a “considerable drop” in comprehensive sex education from 1988 to 2000″, followed immediately by “Blumenthal has encountered women who mistakenly believe they are infertile because of age or confusion about a missed period” – as if women who think they’re infertile because of age could have possibly been affected by the considerable drop in comprehensive sex education since 1988! Such women are at most 35 years old!
You know, when I heard about the big bad leftist news media that was going to swing elections 15 points and all that, I expected better propaganda than this. With that kind of pathetic effort, it’s no wonder they went down in flames.