I usually avoid dishing the insulting words regarding intellectual capacities, but in this case insulting words are accurate. If you’re one of those noisy Filipino “pro-lifers” actively barricading the passage of a reproductive health bill and if some of these left your mouth and your fingers, let it be known, you have typed or said something Utterly Stupid.
Before moaning and bitching to impressionable ones using your facebook account or your blog, let it be known I’m not saying you and your impressionable followers are hopeless. I’m saying, you better think harder so you can get out of The Pit of Utter Stupidity.
1. “Abortion is immoral. No to RHB.”
The Stupidity: Associating ideas that are not associated.
A little homework would tell you this bill and it consolidated version do not legalize abortion.
2. “We don’t need the RHB. What we need is Natural Family Planning and Abstinence.”
The Stupidity: Doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.
The NFP campaigns started in the 1970s with both government and Church going out of their way to promote this financially appealing program while our culture has been proud of passing on the great idea of abstinence by preventing the access of information to Reproductive Health.
Guess how we’re faring:
Right now the average family wants an average of 2.5 children. The average family gets an average of 3.03 children.
Poorer families want 3 to 4 children, but they give birth to an average of 4 to 6 children. Poorer families have 3x more children than average families.
The usage rate of NFP amounts to a disappointing rate of 9.4%. That’s 9.4% after decades of combined government and church efforts.
More than half of the pregnancies in this country are unplanned. Thirty percent (30%) of births belong to the 15-24 age group. Read “teen pregnancies” and “early pregnancies.”
Want to use the same tricks? Please consider going abroad and taking your next generation with you.
Promoting only NFP, abstinence and little information on reproductive health gave us abysmal results. Time to promote all standard birth control methods without prejudice. Time to promote reproductive health education.
The next time you blabber on the effectiveness of abstinence, no RH education & NFP, ask yourself again why we have a high number of teen pregnancies, unplanned pregnancies, high maternal morbidities and why families cannot meet their desired fertility.
3. “RHB promotes Contraceptive Mentality. That’s bad. “
The Stupidity: False Statement. We have no “contraceptive mentality.”
Guess the percentage of women using pills? Spoilers: it’s 15.7%. Female sterilization is at 9.2%, IUD 3.7%, injectables 2.6 and condoms 2.3.
Guess the percentage of women not using any birth control method: almost 50%. Nearly half of Filipino women are at risk for unplanned pregnancies yet they don’t use any form of birth control, modern or traditional thanks to our cultural allergy to reproductive health education.
And what’s so frickin’ bad about modern contraception when it’s more effective in preventing unwanted pregnancies?
In fact, it prevents around 112 million abortions in developing countries every year. Women not using any birth control method account for 54% of abortion cases and women using traditional methods like NFP account for 35% of abortion cases. Women on modern contraception? Only 11% of abortion cases.
Still think modern contraception is evil?
4. “RHB, specifically giving out modern contraceptives promotes a dole out mentality.”
The Stupidity: Mistaking investments for dole outs just because you don’t benefit directly
Guess how much the country spends on unwanted pregnancies? Spoilers: it’s P5.5 billion. That’s more than 5 billion pesos that could have been saved and invested in education, health and other opportunities but were spent instead on managing unwanted pregnancies.
Guess who needs freebies because they cannot get contraception. Spoilers: the poorer, marginalized women. The wealthier women don’t need to fall in line in the nearest Health Center and get a free Depo injection or a free lecture on reproductive health. It’s the poorer women who don’t have the means or the idea how to control their childbearing. It’s they who give birth to more children that they can’t afford and who mistakenly believe every child will automatically make them richer. The more children these women have, the less money they can spend on each child for education and health and the greater chance for the children to grow up and stay poor.
Guess how many unintended pregnancies in 2008 we could have prevented through effective contraception? Spoilers: 1.9 million.
Guess how many women died in the same year due to unplanned pregnancies? Spoilers: about 223,000.
This discussion will not even cover the health risks associated with pregnancy, but I strongly urge the noisy pro-lifers to remember that pregnancy is not a walk in the park. It’s an expensive, health-risking, life-risking process to bring about new life. An unplanned pregnancy only exacerbates those risks.
Healthier women gives you healthier kids. Healthier people gives you a healthier society.
How is it it’s fine to give food, but not okay to give information or resources to empower a woman? It must be the cultural allergy again.
5. “RHB will endanger our population. Look at Japan, Russia, Germany, Canada, etc.”
The Stupidity: Look at how these first world countries are doing. Wow our situation is way way better than theirs /sarcasm
Look at how Filipinos leave the Philippines for a shot at working in these countries? I guess I don’t have to explain that.
RHB will help reduce fertility rates, or the number of children per family, but the population will still grow due to population momentum. If you don’t believe me, our fertility rates have gone down in the past fifty years, but our population is still exploding.
What the heck is RHB for if the fertility rates are going down? Aside from giving women and future children a more DECENT shot at life that pro-lifers strangely object to? The decrease in our fertility rates is TOO slow compared to other countries like Thailand, Vietnam and Malaysia. Guess how these countries are faring economically compared to the Philippines.
6. “RHB is against individual liberty! It’s a fascist bill. It’s an anti-capitalism bill.”
The utter Stupidity: Mistaking RHB for an economic overhaul bill; Mistakenly believing our country is 100% capitalism.
You want 100% individual liberty? Go find a patch of land not subject to any government, organization, group or individual. Make legal claims on that patch of land and live happily ever after without worrying why your taxes go to anti-liberty government projects like public school education or funds to prevent epidemics – the government has no right to spend your money on these things without your permission dammit! /sarcasm
Really you call yourself pro-life but you don’t want better health for women and children, save lives, give them a bigger window out of poverty all because “it’s against liberty?”
7. “RHB will create more corruption. No to RHB!”
The Stupidity: Duh. It’s not the issue.
Following this incredibly flawed logic, we should stop all government projects. That should stop corruption. Even better idea is we should just carry on without a government
8. “RHB is against the teachings of the church! It’s against culture!”
The utter Stupidity: Putting value in harmful culture rather than human welfare.
About half a century ago, it was still fine and dandy for priests to preach to doctors not to give painkillers to birthing women because “God” gave women the “pain of birth.” Currently, that teaching falls under the category of barbaric or utterly stupid.
Centuries ago, it was perfectly acceptable for the Church and government institutions to torture and kill women and children for being “witches” without any shred of evidence. Currently, the thought alone falls under the category of barbaric or utterly stupid.
If you’re a fair and just person, you don’t go around killing people and making them suffer just because they don’t share the same beliefs as you do. If you’re a fair and just person, you don’t put stock in values or traditions that bring about suffering.
If you’re a fair and just person, you don’t go around forcing people to conform to your opinions. Here’s a big hint: not all Filipinos think modern contraception is evil.
9. “RHB is an anti-life bill. ”
If you’re a fair and just person and you now understand (because you can learn) why the previous items are utterly stupid, then you know the utter stupidity of this item.
Object to the bill or to the provisions of the bill using these reasons, but don’t cry and moan when someone calls you utterly stupid. That person is telling you the truth.
Kindly reevaluate your objections to a bill that aims to promote gender equality and better quality of life. If you object to a few provisions only, go for “improving” the RHB, not shouting at the top of your lungs how vile and immoral this bill with the cultural allergy to being open about sex and reproduction spurring you on.
Live your “pro-life” creed. Don’t be stupid.
Author: [Cat’s Cradle]