NYC Mayor Mike Bloomberg's "Big Gulp" ban, a ban on sugary drinks over 16 ounces in size, has been in the news for over a month now. Just last week, the NYC health board voted to put the ban into place. Today that same health board voted to allow the distribution of Plan B, or the morning after pill, to teenage girls without parental consent.
Hadley Heath over at the Independent Women's Forum, said this in response:
It's clear what the advantages will be: In New York City, about 7,000 girls get pregnant each year. This disrupts their education, and half of these pregnancies end in abortion. I'm sure the thought is that offering "Plan B" to students will reduce the number of unexpected pregnancies at school.
But there are two sides to every coin:
This pill is not a piece of candy. There are real health-related questions about making it available to 14 year olds. Remember, it's called "Plan B," and is intended for occasional use. I'd hate to think of immature students using it instead as "Plan A," unneccessarily flushing their developing bodies with these hormones too frequently. Yes, I know the FDA says it's safe. But it certainly isn't best. This could mean that students reduce their condom use, too, which could expose them to a higher risk of contracting an STD.
Furthermore, think about what this means culturally about the value of sexual intimacy. Is it too much to ask of high schoolers to focus on their studies and enjoy being kids? And by making "Plan B" available at school - from the nurse - aren't we cutting out an important middleman, the parent?
Heath is right. For years the left has tried to cut parents out of the school system. Whether it's expanding the school day (which hasn't turned into smarter kids or better test scores) or providing Plan B to children without parental notification.