Many comments in my most recent post about The Pill indicated that readers thought that I was calling people selfish for taking prescription medication, especially hormonal birth control, and that I was proposing that all people on medication should stop taking it. This isn’t the case. I want to clarify my point.
While I am lucky enough not to suffer from chronic conditions like endometriosis and others that were mentioned in the comments of that post, I do understand that others do and that, for them, hormonal birth control is the only way they’ve been able to find relief. I also understand that there are a wide range of mental illnesses that, without the aid of anti-depressants and other prescription medications, can be excruciating–or impossible– to deal with. While I think that we need to be looking for other methods of treatment for various alments and conditions, I understand that we cannot (and should not) simply take it away from people who are dependent on the medications. That would not be morally right.
This is why I repeatedly stated that I was not advocating denying people’s right to medications and forms of treatment.
It’s clear that, because of the angry, flippant tone that I used in that post that this message may have not been made as clear as I intended.
There are a lot of inconsistencies in my argument; this, I am aware of. For one, besides conditions like endo, synthetic hormones improve the lives of many transgender people, and I have no desire to inform transgender people that they must either find a different way to transition, or “deal with” being trans without the option to transition.
Instead, what I was trying to get across was how obnoxious I find it that so many people in various feminist communities, for some reason, flat-out refuse to acknowledge negative affects of The Pill and other pharmaceuticals. In a similar vein, in these communities it is often also rarely acknowledged that in the US, at least, people are over-diagnosed with mental illnesses, disorders, etc., and many anti-depressants and other medications are often over-prescribed. I realize that this silence is often in attempt to shield the people who actually have conditions that are relieved in at least some way by various pharmaceuticals of more ostracization and disbelief than they are already unfortunately accustomed to. It is my opinion, however, that the truth needs to be accessible to everyone and that, as typically progressively minded people, we should not take off our critical thinking hats when faced with people in our own community.
My position on the pharmaceutical industry has not changed, nor has my opinion on oral contraceptives changed. While I do not wish to forbid the use of pharmaceuticals to people who need them, I do hope that we can all agree that the industry is under-regulated, for-profit in the worst way, and in desperate need of an overhaul. We need to be searching for alternatives that are better in the long run for people who need them, and others who don’t. Enough allowing them to exploit our legitimate problems and issues for their financial gain. Where is the accountability? We can’t turn a blind eye to them just because we like the convenience of The Pill when it’s used as a method of birth control. They need to be held accountable, and we deserve better. We are not stupid; we are not sheep who should be expected to trust everything they offer us. They’ve proven themselves not to be trusted.
That said, it’s become almost funny that I maintain a blog called The Nice Feminist when I’ve been writing such angry and disillusioned posts lately. So, as a result, I’ll leave this blog up, but for future posts (since I still love blogging and can’t help but make sure I type my opinion at as many people as I can), I’ll be starting another blog. Because I’m a feminist and committed to equality, these topics will be the majority of the content of the new blog, similar to this one. I anticipate many of the first posts to be me attempting to suss out the inconsistencies of the various philosophies I hold, so expect minor navel-gazing, but with a hopefully more relevant, analytical approach.
For any regular readers who do check back often and enjoy the posts here, I will be posting a link to the new blog when it’s up.
Thanks to everyone who has enjoyed this blog and the content in it. I appreciate your readership, and the blogroll will also be moving to the new blog. I hope you’ll stop by and check it out when I figure out what to call it and get it up and running.
imnotme, who seems to have forgotten that he can post on this blog, can still be found at his personal blog, which is imnotme.wordpress.com.