Reaching seven billion people on planet Earth has prompted renewed debates about the balance between population size and consumption of natural resources, about age structure and political stability, and about the consequences of rapid population growth rates for poor countries’ ability to develop economically. To a large extent, however, these macro-level dilemmas reflect a micro-level problem about which there is a universal consensus and where the solution is relatively straightforward.
Republicans voted eleven separate times this week to block funding for the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA). That’s right, eleven separate times in the span of just three hours.
At a time when America is facing the greatest economic downturn since the Great Depression, when poverty rates in Texas are rising, and the uninsured rate in Texas is the highest in the nation, the Republican dominated Texas legislature cut funding for programs prove to helping working women while increasing funding for religious organizations that do nothing for women’s health care.
President Bush praises family planning? On World Contraception Day? Don’t fall off your chair. Nearly 40 years ago, ensuring universal access to family planning services was a cause that card-carrying Republicans were actually proud to embrace. So we’re talkin’ President George Bush, Senior, before he was President.
Today is World Contraception Day. It’s actually a day just like any other, because it’s a day when so many women worldwide remain without access to birth control or other reproductive health services, and in which reproductive choice for all women remains an elusive goal.
Today, the Senate Appropriations Committee adopted an amendment to the FY 2012 State Department and foreign operations appropriations bill introduced by Senator Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) that, if signed into law, would block re-imposition of the Global Gag Rule.
With the global population expected to surpass 7 billion, we can only expect that the unmet need for family planning services, which currently exists for an estimated 215 million women globally, will only increase.
The Associated Press reports that a federal judge ordered Kansas “to immediately resume funding a Planned Parenthood chapter on the same quarterly schedule that existed before a new state law stripped it of all federal funding for non-abortion services.”
It’s not often that I agree with Michael Gerson, the conservative former speech writer for President George H.W. Bush, advocate for abstinence-only policies in U.S. global AIDS programs, and columnist for the Washington Post. Today, however, I am in near full-agreement with him on why a pro-choice position on a public health intervention is also pro-life in the real sense.
On the heels of Vice President Biden’s recent trip to China, the leadership of the House of Representatives issued a misguided ultimatum to President Obama: defund UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, or else.