If you want to get technical on a sensitive issue, then one can consider the accepted definition of the medical community of when a pregnancy begins: when the fertilized egg successfully implants itself in the lining of the uterus. That makes sure that most contraception – and especially the Birth Control Pill – acts before pregnancy begins, which draws a clear line between contraception and abortion. Now that definition may not accord with the view of Catholic Bishops in America, and the Catholic Church in general, as well as other religious groups and some pro-life advocates, but for most, it is a common sense and comfortable demarcation. Well, actually, most who approve of over the counter BC pills haven’t dug down that deep into the science and perhaps would be uncomfortable doing so. Or maybe not.

The GOP, candidate by candidate with Bobby Jindall’s op-ed piece in December of 2012 as a key moment, has decided to support over the counter BC pills. In the most part this is to neutralize the Democrats constant attack on the party´s supposed lack of support for women’s rights in general, and women’s health issues in particular. But it is more than that; the issue seems to be one on which a large majority of women, and a majority of the general population in America have made up their minds. And the optics of birth control according to health organizations like the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists seems to be one of educating parents – you can think of it as reprogramming family values – to ensure a productive and functional family outcome. That means the conditions for having a child are starting to approximate a privilege that must be earned by potential parents displaying the right attitudes, budget, and even lifestyle. Spanking, for example, has been criminalized in parts of Europe, and it is only a matter of time before a court case in America decides against any physical punishment of children, even as teenage violence against parents is a relatively minor but noticeable problem. Are families happier, healthier, and safer than they were fifty years ago? It seems impolite to ask the question to many nowadays. What matters to them is that families are changing and BC pills available over the counter, according to this view, is just one piece of our postmodern world’s matrix of entitlement and efficiency. Birth Control will likely disappear as an issue over this election cycle. The GOP has decided to help the issue on its way to oblivion, and it is a reasonable – if not completely comfortable – choice they are making.

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