Pro Birth-Control Perspective Shows

The media bias towards permissiveness and the acceptance of birth control as a right.
by Jim Fair | Source:
No doubt inspired by the controversy over a Portland, Maine, school district’s decision to offer “full contraceptive services” to junior high students, the Associated Press (AP) did a poll last week to determine whether adults approve of such a policy.

You may have seen the results – and if you did you probably were surprised. Actually, you should be surprised twice. The first surprise arrives with headlines such as this, which appeared widely above a story on poll results: “Poll: Most OK Birth Control for
Schools.”

The lead of the AP story says: “People decisively favor letting their public schools provide birth control to students, but they also voice misgiving that divide them along generations, income and racial lines, a poll showed.”

The next paragraph: “Sixty-seven percent support giving contraceptives to students, according to an Associated Press-Ipsos poll. About as many – 62 percent – said they believe providing birth control reduces the number of teenage pregnancies.”

The impression this gives is that two-thirds of the people polled think it is acceptable for schools to provide birth control services. But this is where the second surprise comes in: that isn’t really what the poll showed.

Being a bit surprised, I tracked down the study (google is a wonderful thing) and what I found was that the people polled about this issue fell into more or less equal thirds:
• 30 percent did, indeed, think is was fine for schools to provide kids with birth control (although the poll didn’t differentiate between condoms, pills or devices)
• 37 percent thought it was permissible for schools to provide birth control – but only with parental consent
• 30 percent didn’t think the school had any business providing birth control under any circumstances

So the real news was the desire of parents to retain control over the health and welfare of their children. Put another way, the poll results really support a headline something like this: Two-third of parents don’t want schools making health decisions for kids.

In fact, that is what the numbers say. But that isn’t how the AP reported the story. Why? Perhaps because the media bias is toward permissiveness and accepting birth control as a right.

As the father of a teenage girl, I’m grateful that she attends a school that acts Catholic. It never would enter the school administrators’ minds to offer birth control. In fact, my daughter has to have a note from home to take an aspirin.

If AP and its army of reporters want to do the nation a service, perhaps they could spend a little time on why school administrators in Maine want to give birth control services to 14-year-olds. And here is a hot tip: it isn’t because it is the only way to avoid pregnancy.



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