Since learning that the 2016 election will send pro-lifers to the White House, U.S. House of Representatives, and U.S. Senate, the pro-abortion crowd — including many in the media — has reacted in a panicked fashion.
One reaction has been to urge women to immediately insert an intrauterine device (IUD) into their bodies as a form of a long-acting reversible contraception (LARC). The rush to do so seems to be out of a fear of what President-Elect Donald Trump, Vice President-Elect Mike Pence, and a Republican controlled Congress will do about abortion.
As ABC News and Mediaite reported, there was a spike in searches for getting an IUD after the election results. Many outlets are also urging women to rush through this health decision and get the IUD immediately, in order to do so before Trump actually takes office in January. Outlets reporting on to promote this hysteria include, in addition to Mediaite’s own pro-abortion spin:
- New York Magazine: Here’s Why Everyone Is Saying to Get an IUD Today
- Bustle: Why You Should Get An IUD Now, Before Trump Takes Office In January
- Jezebel: Maybe You Should Get an IUD Today
- Glamour: Scared of What Donald Trump’s Win Means For Reproductive Rights? Consider an IUD–Like, Right Now
- Washington Post: Women consider long-term birth control now that Trump victory looms over reproductive health
- Slate: Women Are Preparing for Trump and Pence’s Inevitable Assault on Reproductive Rights
This mad dash over a serious decision isn’t the only ridiculous part of this media frenzy. Trump has made pro-life promises, and Pence has a pro-life record as a governor and Congressman, but they have yet to act on their promises and records, though the pro-life movement plans to hold them accountable once they do take office.
Even if a Trump presidency were to result in the signing of pro-life legislation and appointments of pro-life justices to the U.S. Supreme Court, there is no indication that abortion would suddenly be outlawed on a national level. The overturning of Roe v. Wade, as Live Action News’ Calvin Freiburger has pointed out, would simply give states the right to set their own laws on abortion. Even the Guttmacher Institute, formerly a division of Planned Parenthood, has admitted as much. Currently, the United States is one of just four nations which allows for abortion up until birth for any reason.
Long-acting reversible contraceptives like IUDs (or even other types of contraceptives) have never been targeted for a ban. What has been considered, however, is a federal ban on abortion past 20 weeks for the sake of pain-capable preborn children, as well as the defunding Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion provider. This year, both houses of Congress actually voted to defund the organization and reroute its half a billion dollars in annual funds to federally qualified health centers (FQHCs) and community health centers. This was promptly vetoed by President Obama.
Trump has also vowed to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, or ObamaCare, which forced employers to provide all forms of contraception, including the IUD. Should this mandate not make it into a replacement for ObamaCare, there are still no indications that the IUD would suddenly become illegal or unavailable for women to access from their doctors.
An IUD is intended to prevent pregnancy for around 3 – 14 years, which some may consider a benefit — but this device definitely has its drawbacks. Slate admitted that the device can be painful. It can also act as an abortifacient. Live Action News has covered the horrifying story of a 22-year-old woman who needed a hysterectomy after her IUD. A link in that article additionally directs readers to information about IUDs and other forms of birth control, as provided by Abby Johnson, a former Planned Parenthood director.
Whether or not a woman chooses to get an IUD inserted is a serious health decision, and therefore should not be made as a rushed and frantic reaction to election results. Guttmacher admits that “states introducing restrictive [abortion] legislation already had significant restrictions in place, and women living in these states had previously adjusted their behaviors,” regarding preventing pregnancy, adding that “contraceptive choice seems to be most strongly influenced by individual characteristics, irrespective of the larger abortion context.”
The media pushing this panicked “get your IUD now” narrative is doing a disservice to women.