Waging War on Women by Using Birth Control as Bullets

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By Bethany Blankley, CP Op-Ed Contributor
July 25, 2014|10:10 am

Recent debate about access to women's birth control could not be more deceptive or ironic because it's based on the false presupposition that reproductive rights is solely a woman's issue. The universally known biological fact is that no woman can become pregnant without a man's sperm.

Yet, "family planning" initiatives have always targeted women, not men. None involve a systematic implementation of vasectomies or chemical castration. None address the reality that no female birth control method prevents STD/HIV/AIDS transmission.

Promoting female birth control is profoundly sexist. Targeting women reinforces widespread, long-held cultural and legal norms that ignore male sexual responsibility and culpability, and actually creates tangible, authentic gender inequality.

In fact, the wrong choice is being discussed about the wrong issue.

Birth control is killing women.

Yet, women, especially elected officials, actively encourage women to use life-threatening medication. And their fraudulent claims ["big corps shouldn't come before women's rights;" women "should have access to birth control" but don't because of employers and politicians; women are the "boss" of their healthcare; women need legislation to overturn court rulings of which they "should be afraid"] purposefully deflect attention from their negligent oversight of legalized pharmaceutical experimentation on women.

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Deflection is necessary. Most elitists in Congress are beholden to a multibillion-dollar pharmaceutical industry that fills their coffers. An industry that unequivocally values profit over everyone's rights-determines a "woman's choice" well before she ever receives a prescription.

Her "choice," or her least lethal option, is chosen for her-by those within the corrupted culture of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). It's no secret that the FDA rewards conflict, "pay-for-play" arrangements, end-around bribery, and turns a blind eye to for-profit clinical research (seedling trials) and faulty criterion. And Congress' eyes are wide shut.

I know firsthand of these lethal options-because birth control nearly killed me. Of the three prescribed medications I used, two (Depo-Provera and Ortho Evra) caused serious health problems and the Nuvo Ring nearly killed me within several months.

Consider Depo-Provera, (Depo) (Medroxy Progesterone Acetate), an injectable synthetic hormone manufactured by Pharmacia, a subsidiary of Pfizer, one of the world's largest pharmaceutical companies. (Pfizer is litigating individual and class action Depo-related lawsuits with alleged damages nearing $1 billion. The U.S. Justice Department also fined Pfizer for felony charges related to off label claims, kickbacks and concealing lethal harm of drugs.)

I, like millions of women, was not informed about any of Depo's negative side effects–or that Depo is a carcinogenic drug that causes:

  • Breast cancer (more than double the risk of the birth control pill);
  • Increased bone mineral density loss that causes osteoporosis, fractures, brittle teeth, spine and hip injuries (which prompted the FDA to require a Black Box warning);
  • Increased acquisition and transmission of HIV/AIDs and STDs. (According to USAID, up to 300 percent for chlamydia and gonorrhea alone.)

Prior to Depo's 1992 FDA approval, Upjohn Inc., its original manufacturer, conducted tests for over thirty years on animals and approximately 30 million women worldwide. U.S. taxpayers funded much of them.

In America, Upjohn contracted the Grady Memorial Family Planning Clinic in Atlanta to conduct tests. For eleven years, beginning in 1967, the clinic administered Depo to more than 14,000 women. More than half received public assistance; more than half were black, low-income, and lived in rural areas. The project's director, Robert Hatcher, deliberately chose to never file required FDA reports, nor discuss informed consent nor side effects with these women. Any data was "discredited," due to "poorly kept records." Yet, evidence substantiated that after using Depo, women developed cancer, experienced health complications, negative side effects, or died.

According to underreported and incomplete Indian Health Services (IHS) data, Depo was administered to Indian women and adolescent girls since the early 1970s as part of the federal government's sterilization policy.

Test results from monkeys, beagles, rats and mice evidenced causation between Depo and breast, cervical, and uterine cancer, and fatal fetal birth defects.

Internationally, Upjohn tested women through "field studies" conducted in approximately 70 countries. Funding appropriated to the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) subsidized research efforts through organizations like the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) and the UN Fund for Population Activities (UNFPA). Many injected women were deliberately not informed about what the shot was or why they were receiving it.

Throughout the 1970s and 1980s USAID funded initiatives to provide:

  • Depo doses for 378,000 women in Mexico, Sri Lanka, and Bangladesh (IPPF);
  • 600,000 Depo doses for Bangladeshi; 1 million for Thai women; in Thai refugee camps women were promised a chicken for every injection (UNFPA);
  • Nearly 42 million Depo units to women in African countries from 1994-2000; rations of wheat, oil, powdered milk, and fish meal were distributed as "rewards" for injections despite the fact that the UN World Food Program had already specified that women with children should receive these rations unconditionally.

These examples are miniscule compared to the unending global "research" efforts that USAID still largely funds.

Recently, The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (in collaboration with numerous organizations (FP2020)) announced a "global crusade" to provide "more women access to contraceptives." The Gates' goal to raise $4 billion would facilitate injecting 120 million women with Depo. Pfizer is expected to earn $36 billion annually from this initiative alone.

No collective data over the last sixty years even remotely verifies that Depo improves quality of life, prevents disease, or is the contraceptive of a woman's "informed choice." What extensive data does indicate is that harming women, even killing them, is an expected, calculated loss when conducting research.

Depo caused substantial health problems for me. One involved significant bone mineral density loss (that I'm still rebuilding), which contributed to a broken elbow and herniated discs. Had I known, I never would have used it. But I was never given that choice. And I doubt the millions of soon-to-be injected women won't be given an informed choice either.

Bethany Blankley's articles and columns are published by national news outlets and she contributes political analysis on national television and radio. An Independent Conservative, she supports a substantial overhaul of all three branches of government, that American citizens should receive the same benefits as those who are supposed to serve them, and that fiscal policy be prioritized to improve America's socio-economic crisis before another penny is sent abroad. She is a political analyst for Fox News Radio and her columns primarily focusing on religious freedom are published by Patheos at Hedgerow.
 

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