Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Planning in the Philippines

They are finally handing out government funded birth control to women in the Philippines. With a population explosion there and that it is not uncommon for women to have 10 children, something has to be done. Why don’t they sterilize men who are rapists or who have a reputation for having too many children done anywhere on the globe? Why is the subject of having children always only a woman’s issue? In America insurance companies will pay for Viagra but won’t even cover menstruation supplies for women why? The Philippines is a very Catholic region. They don’t believe in birth control. In America Trump is trying to stop funding for women’s needs and close down Planned Parenthood and stop abortions. Does he want a population explosion? Will he pay for the care and college for all the unwanted children born? These days no one seems to even care who the baby daddy is, a woman has to deal with the pain and the commitment for raising a child.
Only in marriage is there a court to find child support. A one night stand that produces a child is never enforced to hold the father responsible. At least now there is a law in the Philippines since 2012 that provides contraception if they want to the countries overflowing 100 million people. Most people are desperately poor. The dictator there just wrote a new executive order to include sex education in the schools. Now there will be more access to reproductive health programs and sexual education for all. The religious clergy is becoming more active to stop the new programs. Yes, Americans are not the only ones going through the ethical dramas involving abortions and women’s health in general. The Philippines is a very conservative country.
Now in maternity wards there the doctors consult the mother’s about family planning. They tell the women about free pills, injectables, condoms and  IUD, Birth control has always been available in the Philippines but for decades only a small portion of the population could afford it. By 2018 contraception will be free for all people despite how wealthy or poor you are. It is nice that finally the women have options in the care and well- being of their bodies.  Most pregnancies are not planned there and the women say it came by surprise. Perhaps many of the surprises will end now. The Philippines is one of a few countries that has seen an increase in adolescent birth rates.  Infant mortality is high there too. Before the executive order went into effect women who wanted birth control had to seek open markets that sold unregulated products that no one even knew if they were safe or effective.
Now people are even going through the streets to distribute brochures and free samples of contraception’s. Community organizers go into poor neighborhoods where families earn just a few dollars per day. They are also providing transportation to help the women go to clinics to get the services they need. We need a healthy woman to take care of her many children. Too often contraception is confused with abortion. We live in a world where sex is everywhere at any age.  Ethics and religion are rarely thought of in the moment of passion or just a release for men. At least the poor know that contraception helps them and their families to lead a safer and quality life.  We should learn from the new policies in the Philippines.

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