When Sandra Fluke spoke on the floor of Congress about the values of birth control in 2012, I noticed she left a valuable talking point out. And with the Supreme Court ruling in the case of Burwell vs. Hobby Lobby, I’ve noticed the same omission.
Why is it, when defending access to birth control, the primary reason that many women (99% to be exact) use (to prevent pregnancy) is avoided? In Fluke’s testimony to Congress, the crux of her argument was that birth control can be used to treat many health risks to women:
One woman told us doctors believe she has endometriosis, but it can’t be proven without surgery, so the insurance hasn’t been willing to cover her medication. Recently, another friend of mine told me that she also has polycystic ovarian syndrome. She’s struggling to pay for her medication and is terrified to not have access to it. Due to the barriers erected by Georgetown’s policy, she hasn’t been reimbursed for her medication since last August. I sincerely pray that we don’t have to wait until she loses an ovary or is diagnosed with cancer before her needs and the needs of all of these women are taken seriously.
Why is preventing pregnancy not as important as preventing cysts, ovarian cancer or endometriosis? If you are a normal, human woman like me (who wants to have sex with my boyfriend whenever I want) having stress-free, no-risk sex is a damn important priority. And for a majority of women, being able to receive the same sexual privileges that men have, is one step closer to equality. Continue reading