In response to the Letter to the Editor submitted last week by Ms. DeFranco, Mr. Howard, Ms. Kluza, Ms. Quinn, Ms. Muckerheide, and Ms. Twardzik:

Obviously, the six of you feel strongly about contraception and were offended by Joan Khihnicki’s off-the-cuff headline on children as a sexually transmitted disease. However, your letter to the editor seemed to miss the mark a bit — the writer of the letter, “Seeking Birth Control in Burton,” wrote to “Sex and the CT” specifically requesting information about the Pill and how to get it without her parents’ knowledge. Joan did not actively encourage her reader to deceive her parents or to seek the Pill — she merely provided the information requested. She also went a step further in encouraging her reader to use condoms, which from a public health perspective is excellent advice.

Your letter did provide some indication of the negative side effects of the Pill, which is important information. However, since the reader in question was requesting birth control and is therefore presumably having intercourse, directing her to a website discussing chastity and natural family planning may not have been terribly helpful.

The Pill does not cause abortions: it prevents ovulation (the release of an egg) and thickens the cervical mucus to prevent sperm from reaching the egg. The Pill prevents implantation of a fertilized egg only as a backup method of contraception — most of the time, the sperm and egg never get together if a woman is on the Pill. Calling this abortion is an inflammatory tactic as well as incorrect information.

For more information, try http://www.plannedparenthood.org/bc/bcfacts1.html for birth control facts, or www.ppsr.org for the Planned Parenthood chapter of the Rochester-Syracuse area.



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