Thursday, March 15, 2007

Response to lecture from Dr. Susan Wood

I recently attended a lecture given by Dr. Susan Wood, the resigned Assistant Commissioner of Women’s Health. Her resignation was in part due to the controversial issue of Plan B, the emergency contraceptive and FDA’s effort to prolong it’s over the counter status due to ideological purposes. Plan B is a set of two high progestin pills that prevents unintended pregnancy if taken within 72 hours of unprotected sex. Plan B does not cause abortion and is very safe. It was approved by FDA in 1999 but did not reach over the counter status until 2003. Plan B cannot be purchased by people under 18 unless given as a prescription not because of scientific purposes but because of ideological reasoning.

Advertisements in popular culture promote public displays of sexuality. Children are subjected to these eroticized advertisements as soon as they are exposed to popular culture whether it’s through TV, movies, or magazines. It’s hard to distinguish between sex and sexuality in advertisements, allowing teens to accept and often attempt to duplicate the images they see represented in today’s popular culture. With emergency contraceptives accessible to teenagers, some of the people at FDA were concerned that this would allow teenagers to be careless with their bodies, therefore preventing its advertisement to people underage. So it’s okay to watch men rap about sex with half naked women dancing around them in a music video but it’s illegal for a teenage girl to prevent an unintended pregnancy in a safe way by buying Plan B? Sex is being advertised through popular culture but there is no advertisement for Plan B in an off label prescription.


Jessie said...

Well stated and so super-relevant to the pop cultural theme! Nice job

Burdette said...

Great work.