Articles on Contraception (2011-2010)

First  FDA, now Health Canada: contraceptive pills may significantly increase blood clot risk

OTTAWA, Ontario, June 10, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Health Canada has announced it will be reviewing the safety of the contraceptive pills Yaz and Yasmin over concerns users may have a two to three times greater risk of developing blood clots, compared to those who use other brands of contraceptive pills. Health Canada’s decision follows in the footsteps of an announcement in May that the United State’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA) was also reviewing the safety of the contraceptive pills. “Blood clots are a rare but well known side effect associated with all birth control pills,” said a statement from the Canadian federal department. Recent studies, including two new
studies published in the British Medical Journal,  suggest the risk of venous thromboembolism (blood clots) with drospirenone-containing contraceptive pills may be two to three times greater than with birth control pills containing another type of
progestin. Drospirenone is one form of the female sex hormone known as progestin.  While most contraceptive pills contain a combination of progestin and estrogen, some contain different types of progestin only. In Canada, Yaz and Yasmin, produced by Bayer, are the only contraceptive pills containing drospirenone. Bayer is facing 7000 Yaz-related lawsuits in the U.S. from women who say the drug manufacturer misrepresented the dangers associated with using the birth control pills – side effects
including stroke, cardiac arrest, blood clots, and gallbladder problems. One wrongful death lawsuit involves an 18-year-old New Jersey college student, Michelle Pfleger, who died of cardiac arrest after taking Yaz for acne treatment. A blood clot had lodged in her lungs resulting in her sudden death on her way to classes on September 24, 2010. Her mother Joan Cummins filed suit against Bayer on May 10. In light of the concerns, Health Canada announced they will be “investigating and reviewing
the studies.”  “Health Canada will take appropriate action as necessary once the
review is complete,” said the statement on the federal website. “This could include informing health professionals and Canadians of new safety information resulting from Health Canada’s review.” Meanwhile, Bayer issued a press release claiming studies have confirmed the risk from Yaz and Yasmin is comparable to other contraceptives. “Bayer’s oral contraceptives have been and continue to be extensively studied worldwide and for most healthy women of reproductive age, the benefits
of [oral contraceptives such as Yaz and Yasmin] will outweigh the risks when used as directed,” the company said. According to Bayer, the risk of venous thromboembolism (blood clots) for women taking Yaz or Yasmin is also “lower than the risk for VTE associated with pregnancy and delivery.” For other Health Canada drug information and other side effects of hormonal contraceptives, click here.


FDA
announces review of birth control pills over
serious blood clot risks

WASHINGTON, D.C., June 1, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) –
Federal drug regulators are now reviewing studies
that say some modern birth control pills may pose
a serious risk of clots to women who take them.
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced Tuesday
that they were conducting a safety review of
birth control products containing drospirenone, a
synthetic female sex hormone or progestin. German
pharmaceutical maker Bayer’s oral
contraceptives Yaz, Yasmine, Safyral, Beyaz, and
their generics are part of a chemical family of
contraceptives containing drospirenone, and are
among the oral contraceptives whose effects the
FDA intends to review. Bayer faces 7000
Yaz-related lawsuits from women who say the
drug-manufacturer misrepresented the dangers
associated with using the birth control pills
– side effects including stroke, cardiac
arrest, blood clots, and gallbladder problems.
Bayer has marketed heavily its Yaz oral
contraceptive products to teenagers and young
adult women, saying its products were not just
for preventing pregnancy, but also could treat
PMS symptoms and acne. One wrongful death lawsuit
involves an 18-year-old New Jersey college
student, Michelle Pfleger, who died of cardiac
arrest after taking Yaz for acne treatment. A
blood clot had lodged in her lungs resulting in
her sudden death on her way to classes on
September 24, 2010. Her mother Joan Cummins filed
suit against Bayer on May 10. The FDA noted in
its public announcement that “[a]ll birth
control pills pose a risk of blood clots,”
but two studies posed in the British Medical
Journal contended that the contraceptives
containing drospirenone posed two to three times
a greater risk than other contraceptives
containing the progestin levonorgestrel. The FDA
said it was going to conduct a study of 800,000
women in order to resolve the conclusions of
conflicting studies on drospirenone-containing
contraceptives. The results of the study are due
sometime in the summer.


Contraception
underlying cause of breakdown of family, sexual
morality, says expert

WASHINGTON, D.C., March 25, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) –
Contraception is the underlying factor
responsible for today’s scourge of unwed
pregnancies, single-parent families, sexually
transmitted diseases, deficient fatherhood, and
high abortion rate, says a prominent family
expert.  “Since the introduction of
contraception, everything else has fallen,”
said Patrick Fagan, director of the Family
Research Council’s Marriage and Religion
Research Institute, reported CNS.
Addressing the annual conference of the Frederick
Douglass Foundation in Washington, D.C. last
week, Fagan cited “alienation of men from
women, the breakdown of marriage,” and
“sex outside of marriage” as a few of
the tragic results of contraception use. The
foundation is a black, faith-based organization.
“Universally, in all the history of
Christianity, contraception was always seen as a
grave sin against God,” he said, “a sin
by which one lost divine life and the soul.”
Planned Parenthood’s birth-control campaign,
said Fagan, was the beginning of the societal
scourge. “The first family targeted by
Planned Parenthood in the late 30s, early 40s was
the black family,” said Fagan. The abortion
giant campaigned in low-income, black
neighborhoods.  That campaign, said Fagan,
is partly responsible for the breakdown of the
black family as well as a host of other
consequences affecting society at large. Black
families had remained intact until the 1930s when
the American Birth Control League, later renamed
Planned Parenthood Federation of America,
implemented their pro-abortion agenda on the
minority group, he said.  “By the late
1960’s, after ‘family planning’
clinics were widespread, there was a clear
pattern of a preponderance of them being in black
neighborhoods.” “[Y]ou had this mass
commodification of sex outside of marriage,
mainly through contraception,” continued
Fagan. “Who pushed the whole thing? Planned
Parenthood. They first got to the black family.
Why? Because they wanted to reduce black kids.
They didn’t want black kids.” In an
e-mail to CNSNews.com, Fagan wrote,
“Margaret Sanger spearheaded the effort of
population control of blacks through the Black
church, exemplified in her Harlem Clinic, which
started in the 1930’s.  Adam Clayton
Powell Sr. had her address the Abyssian Baptist
Church, Harlem’s largest Black church.”
Another conference speaker, Patricia Funderburk
Ware, president and CEO of PFW Consultants Inc.,
agreed with Fagan’s analysis of the
destruction contraception has caused. Funderburk
Ware was the director of the Office of Adolescent
Pregnancy Programs at the U.S. Department of
Health and Human Services during the George W.
Bush administration.  “We didn’t
have legalized abortions before,” Funderburk
Ware said. “We didn’t have birth
control.” Yet with the rise of birth control
has come a sex-without-consequences
mentality.  With birth control availability
and legalized abortion, said Funderburk Ware,
“If we got pregnant, we could get an
abortion.”


Study:
Contraceptive pills deplete women’s bodies
of essential vitamins, antioxidants

BRONX, NY, Fri Mar 4, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) – A study
carried out by the Obstetrics and Gynecology
Dept. of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine
at Bronx-Lebanon Hospital has found that women
who use hormonal contraceptives have
significantly lower levels of essential vitamins
and antioxidants compared to women who do not use
the drugs. “We compared the influences of
three contraceptive methods (oral contraceptives,
vaginal ring, and transdermal patch) on serum
levels of coenzyme Q(10), alpha-tocopherol,
gammatocopherol and total antioxidant capacity in
premenopausal women,” said head researcher
Prabhudas R. Palan. CoQ10 is regarded as one of
the most important antioxidants, while
a-Tocopherol is generally considered the most
potent antioxidant in the active tocopherols,
both of which are lipid-soluble free radical
scavengers located in cell membranes capable of
neutralizing oxygen free radicals, the report
states. The study involved seventy non-smoking,
healthy premenopausal women from the same
inner-city socioeconomic background. Of these 70
subjects, forty women who did not use hormonal
contraceptives constituted the control group.
Among the 30 contraceptive users, 15 took the
oral pill (Triphasic OC) for a minimum period of
6 months; 5 inserted the vaginal ring (NuvaRing)
from day 1–21 for a total period of 6
cycles; and 10 used the transdermal patch (Ortho
Evra) for 3 consecutive weeks each month for a
minimum of 6 cycles. The researchers noted that
relatively little research has been focused on
the effect of hormonal contraceptives on
lipid-soluble antioxidant levels, but observed
that previous research has shown that an
imbalance between the production of oxygen free
radicals and serum levels of antioxidants can
lead to cell oxidative stress and damage and
consequent apoptosis (cell death).
“Oxidative stress has been suggested to be
involved in the etiology (causation) of many
chronic disease processes including
cardiovascular disease, cancer, cataracts, and
aging,” the report stated. The researchers
also pointed out that natural ovarian hormones,
primarily estrogens, possess antioxidant
properties and have been postulated to protect
against cardiovascular disease (CVD). The
researchers concluded that hormonal contraceptive
users have significantly depleted levels of
essential vitamins and antioxidants. “This
is the first report examining the effects of
exogenous (artificial) ovarian hormones on serum
levels of CoQ10 and vitamin E in healthy
premenopausal women,” the researchers
reported. “Results demonstrate significantly
lower serum levels of CoQ10, a-tocopherol, and
TAOC (total antioxidant capacity) in hormonal
contraception users compared to nonusers.
“Moreover, contraceptive patch users had the
lowest levels of CoQ10 and TAOC compared with
normal subjects. “Data suggest that
alterations in CoQ10 and a-tocopherol by hormonal
contraception and the potential effect(s) of
exogenous ovarian hormones on oxidative stress
should be taken into consideration in future
antioxidant research,” the report concluded.
The full text of the study, titled “Effects
of Oral, Vaginal, and Transdermal Hormonal
Contraception on Serum Levels of Coenzyme Q10,
Vitamin E, and Total Antioxidant Activity”
is available here.


Surgeon:
birth control pill a ‘molotov cocktail’
for breast cancer

WASHINGTON, D.C., December 6, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) – How
often do doctors in America prescribe a Group One
carcinogen – one recognized as a
“definite” cause of cancer – to
otherwise healthy patients? Answer: as often as
they prescribe the hormonal birth control pill.
This little-known fact about the pill was
presented by Dr. Angela Lanfranchi, a breast
surgical oncologist and co-founder of the Breast
Cancer Prevention Institute, who shared her
expertise on the drug at the “50 Years of
the Pill” conference in Washington, DC on
Friday. “When is it ever right to give a
group one carcinogen to a healthy woman?”
she asked the audience. “We don’t have
to take a group one carcinogen to be
liberated.” Lanfranchi offered a wealth of
statistical data from various sources to support
a fact that is known by the medical community to
be true yet is rarely acknowledged: use of the
pill has been strongly linked to an increased
risk of breast cancer. The pill is also believed
to increase the risk of cervical cancer and liver
cancer. “This stuff is not new, it’s
not magic, it’s in the literature,” she
said, linking pill use to the 660 percent rise in
non-invasive breast cancer since 1973.
“Women want to know, and women have a right
to know, what researchers have known for over 20
years.” She compared media treatment of the
pill’s cancer risk to that of hormone
replacement therapy (HRT), which was found to be
carcinogenic in 2002. Once word got out, 15 out
of 30 million women in America taking HRT
stopped; by 2007, invasive breast cancer in women
over 50 for estrogen-receptive positive tumors
dropped 11 percent. Meanwhile, she noted,
hormonal contraception – essentially the same
drug as HRT and with a similar cancer risk, about
25-30 percent – continues to be touted as
harmless and even healthy. And yet, the
International Agency on Research of Cancer, a
branch of the World Health Organization,
classified hormonal contraceptives in 2005 as a
group one carcinogen along with asbestos and
radium. Unlike the HRT discovery, “I
don’t remember one six o’clock news
report about that information,” said
Lanfranchi. While even medical textbooks attest
to the 30 percent increase in cancer risk,
Lanfranchi noted a pervasively dismissive
attitude: one British medical textbook she cited
said that, “Considering the benefits of the
pill, this slight increased risk is not
considered clinically significant.” Not
clinically significant? “To whom?”
Lanfranchi asked, showing a sobering photograph
of one of her own cancer patients, Suellen
Bennett. While breast cancer caused by the pill
is often caught early, she said, the pill’s
“benefits” are hardly a reason not to
mention its dangers. “This is what you have
to go through when you’re cured. You lose
your hair, you lose your breast,” she said.
Had Suellen been told of the risk, Lanfranchi
said, “she would very well have been one of
those women who would have chosen not to take the
pill.” The surgeon explained that the extra
estrogen received by taking the pill not only
encourages excessive multiplication of breast
tissue – usually a normal occurrence in the
menstruation cycle – but, when metabolized, can
also directly damage breast tissue DNA. Because
breast tissue remains susceptible to cancer until
it undergoes a stabilizing transformation in the
childbearing process, said Lanfranchi, the pill
is particularly dangerous to women who have not
yet had their first child: perhaps the most
popular demographic among pill users in the U.S.
To show just how much of a threat the pill posed
to young women, Lanfranchi pointed to several
statistics, including a 2006 Mayo Clinic
meta-analysis that concluded that breast cancer
risk rises 50 percent for women taking oral
contraceptives four or more years before a
full-term pregnancy. In 2009, the Fred Hutchinson
Cancer Research Center found that women starting
the pill before 18 nearly quadruple their risk of
triple negative breast cancer. Even more
shocking, Swedish oncologist Hakan Olsson
concluded that pill use before the age of 20
increases a young woman’s breast cancer risk
by more than 1000 percent. “It’s like
you took this molotov cocktail of a group one
carcinogen and threw it into that young
girl’s breast,” said Lanfranchi.
“Is this child abuse?” In a world where
50 percent of teenagers are on the pill,
Lanfranchi lamented that publicly controverting
the deep social dependence on the pill has become
nearly impossible – even though the message would
save countless women’s lives. She
sympathized with doctors who would find the
information hard to swallow. “It’s hard
to talk about this because you’re changing a
culture … I want to think that I did good, that
I helped my patients, that I did better because
of what I did,” she said. “25 years
down in my career, when I hear that I’ve
been handing out a group one carcinogen for the
last 25 years, I’m going to be resistant to
that.”


STUDY:
Increased use of contraception associated with
increase in abortion rate

“If
women would only use more contraception, then the
abortion rate would go down!”

From a
Spanish study
:

RESULTS: During the study
period, 1997 to 2007, the overall use of
contraceptive methods increased from 49.1% to
79.9%. The most commonly used method was the
condom (an increase from 21% to 38.8%),
followed by the pill (an increase from 14.2%
to 20.3%). (…) The elective abortion rate
increased from 5.52 to 11.49 per 1000 women.

So in the ten year period that
contraception use increased by about 60%, the
abortion rate doubled. In other words, even with
an increase in contraception use, there weren’t
fewer unwanted pregnancies, there were more.


BC
Government Sues Contraceptive Patch Manufacturer

VANCOUVER, October 7, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) – The
British Columbia government has filed a lawsuit
against pharmaceutical giant Johnson &
Johnson Inc., claiming the maker of the
“Ortho Evra” contraception patch
“aggressively marketed the contraceptive
without disclosing the safety hazards associated
with Evra.” The lawsuit claims that women
using the patch “did not receive any
warnings about the increased risk of developing
blood clots, pulmonary emboli, strokes, heart
attacks or deep vein thrombosis associated with
Evra.” The BC government is seeking to
recover past and future health care costs
associated with caring for women who develop
serious and sometimes fatal illness as a result
of using the dangerous hormonal contraceptive.
The patch delivers the hormones estrogen and
progestin directly into the bloodstream through
the skin, whereas oral contraceptives, which
contain a similar amount of the drugs, must pass
through the digestive system before being
absorbed. Health Canada approved the
contraceptive in 2002, following approval by the
US Food and Drug Administration in 2001. The
lawsuit claims that, although doctors reviewing
the clinical trials of Evra before its approval
recognized the potential for serious health
problems from the use of the patch, Johnson &
Johnson was negligent in providing adequate label
warnings, failed to conduct long-term use risk
studies, and failed to provide Health Canada with
complete and accurate risk information. Johnson
& Johnson and its subsidiary Ortho-McNeil
Pharmaceutical have faced a string of lawsuits
since introducing the Ortho Evra patch. In 2006,
43 US women sued the company, which was facing
approximately 400 similar lawsuits, after
suffering long-term debilitating effects from the
patch. At least 23 women have died from the use
of this form of contraception, including an
18-year-old New York fashion student who
collapsed in a city subway station. An autopsy on
Zakiya Kennedy’s body found a blood clot had
moved into her lungs, and the medical examiner
ruled that the clot was a side effect of the Evra
birth control patch she was using. Vancouver
pharmacist and writer Cristina Alarcon told
LifeSiteNews she is “ecstatic” to see
the BC government take this action on behalf of
women who are injured by the use of this product.
“I am ecstatic to see that perhaps our
government is beginning to take women’s real
healthcare needs more seriously,” she said.
“The history of artificial contraception was
fraught with problems from its inception. Today,
we continue to be used as guinea pigs for every
new brand of synthetic contraceptive that hits
the market.” Noting that in 2005 the
International Agency for Research on Cancer
(IARC), part of the UN’s World Health
Organization, classified hormonal contraceptives
as Group 1 carcinogens for breast, cervical, and
liver cancers, Alarcon observed that “the
carcinogenic effects of the Pill are always
downplayed for political and ideological reasons.
The Pill is a huge money maker for Big
Pharma.” “The Evra patch has problems,
but then so does the current birth control
pill,” Alarcon concluded.


Pro-Lifers
Will Fail Unless We Confront the ‘Corruption
of Innocence’, Says Leader

October 1, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) – If the
pro-life movement is to gain any headway,
pro-life leaders must confront the root of the
attack against the culture of life – the
corruption of innocence through sex education and
contraception, says Mercedes Arzu Wilson, founder
and president of Family of the Americas and a
pioneer in the natural family planning movement.
“We have been ignoring the root of the
problem all these years,” says Wilson.
“The diabolical forces don’t care how
much we fight abortion, as long as you don’t
touch the source that brings women to
abort.” According to Wilson, the source is
the “corruption of innocence that eventually
leads to the devaluation of human life, which is
manifested through abortion and other sinful
deeds.” The “graphic sexuality
‘education’” taught by Planned
Parenthood and its collaborators “is
actually indoctrination,” she says.
“We’re promoting all kinds of
perversions to little children. … If parents
really saw what is being taught to their
children, they would be horrified.” These
programs encourage children to experiment
sexually and purport to teach them methods of
“safe sex,” she explained.  By
handing out or encouraging the use of condoms and
the pill, she said the schools encourage a
mentality that expects sex without
procreation.  When the contraceptives fail,
abortion is used as the final solution. “As
long as pornographic sex information continues
being taught in public and even Catholic schools,
abortion will continue,” she said. She noted
further that two out of three women who obtain
abortions were using contraception when they got
pregnant.  “Planned Parenthood knows
that it’s not going to work, so they’re
ready to offer the next service, which is induced
abortion,” she said. Far more abortions
occur through contraception than induced
abortion, she added, noting that the pill and
other contraceptive methods are designed, in
part, to kill the newly-conceived embryo by
preventing implantation in his or her
mother’s womb.  “Why is it that so
little effort is made to stop the widespread use
of artificial methods of birth control that cause
more abortions, and have been responsible for the
moral decay worldwide?” she asked. Wilson
has been teaching natural family planning since
1968, and her organization, Family of the
Americas, has been teaching her Ovulation Method
since it was founded in 1977.  Her book on
the simple method, which is based on observing
cervical mucus, has been translated into 23
languages.  They are active in over 100
countries, including China, where their method is
being promoted by the government. According to
Wilson, pro-life approaches that focus strictly
on abortion and ignore sex ed and contraception
will fail because they are missing the root of
the problem.  “If you don’t go
back to the source, you’re wasting your
time,” she said.  “They will be
fighting abortion for the rest of their
lives.”


World
Population Report: ‘Aging Populations; Fewer
Workers; Decline of Developed Countries’

WASHINGTON, DC, July 29, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) – The
2010 World Population Data Sheet, published by
the Population Reference Bureau (PBR) on July 28,
says that a shrinking pool of working-age
populations is jeopardizing social support and
long-term health care programs for the elderly,
and points to a decrease in the populations of
developed countries. The report states that
worldwide in 1950, there were 12 persons of
working age for every person age 65 or older. By
2010, that number had shrunk to 9. By 2050, this
elderly support ratio, which indicates levels of
potential social support available for the
elderly, is projected to drop to 4. The report
also shows the contrasts between developing and
developed countries and highlights that while
developing countries will see populations
increase, developed countries are beginning to
see population shrinkage. “There are two
major trends in world population today,”
said Bill Butz, PRB’s president. “On the one
hand, chronically low birth rates in developed
countries are beginning to challenge the health
and financial security of their elderly. On the
other, the developing countries are adding over
80 million to the population every year and the
poorest of those countries are adding 20 million,
exacerbating poverty and threatening the
environment.” Comparing Ethiopia and
Germany, the report illustrates how stark the
contrasts can be. Though Ethiopia and Germany
have almost the same population size today,
Ethiopia is projected to more than double its
population from 85 million today to 174 million
in 2050. Germany’s population will likely decline
from 82 million to 72 million over that same
time. The cause of these enormous differences is
lifetime births per woman. Ethiopia’s total
fertility rate of 5.4 is four times greater than
Germany’s rate of 1.3. Global population rose to
6.9 billion in 2010, the report says, with nearly
all of that growth in the world’s developing
countries. In contrast, the world’s developed
countries, totaling 1.2 billion people, saw their
populations continue to age as the numbers of
those of working age dwindle. For example, Japan
has a total fertility rate of 1.4 children per
woman, and an elderly support ratio of 3—the
lowest in the world, along with Germany and
Italy. By 2050, Japan will have only 1
working-age adult for every elderly person;
Germany and Italy will each have 2. The report
touches on the effect of the recent worldwide
recession, saying that it appears to have caused
further declines in birth rates in some developed
countries, such as Spain and the United States,
and slowed down increases where birth rates had
begun to rise, such as in Norway and Russia. The
Population Reference Bureau’s 2010 World
Population Data Sheet and its summary report
offer detailed information on 19 population,
health, and environment indicators for more than
200 countries. The full text of the report is
available here.


New
study: Abortion triples breast cancer risk

An abortion can triple a
woman’s risk of developing breast cancer
in later life, researchers say.A team of
scientists made the claim while carrying out
research into how breastfeeding can protect
women from developing the killer disease. While
concluding that breastfeeding offered
significant protection from cancer, they also
noted that the highest reported risk factor
in developing the disease was abortion. Other
factors included the onset of the menopause
and smoking. The findings, published in the
journal Cancer Epidemiology, are the latest
research to show a link between abortion and
breast cancer. The research was carried out
by scientists at the University of Colombo in
Sri Lanka. It is the fourth epidemiological
study to report such a link in the past 14
months, with research in China, Turkey and
the U.S. showing similar conclusions. (Source)


Mexico’s
Falling Birth Rate Threatens Future: Psychologist

MEXICO CITY, July 8, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) –
Mexico’s falling birth rate is a threat to its
future, according to María Alejandra Tallabs, an
educational psychologist at Mexico’s Panamerican
University. “Mexico, I say, is approaching
the reality of European countries like Spain,
France, Italy, and England, where in their
enthusiasm for reducing the demographic increase,
they adopt public policies that put their own
descendants at risk as a people,” said
Tallabs in a statement sent to the press
conjointly with the organizations Codigo Mujer
and the Panamerican Association of Bioethics.
Tallabs is reportedly calling on the government
and private sectors to begin a campaign in favor
of the family in order to bring the birth rate up
from its current level, which is barely above 2
children per family, to a replacement
level above 2.1. “We don’t help our
children and young people by telling them only
how they can avoid a pregnancy when they have
sexual relations, reducing the responsibility to
the use of the condom,” said Tallabs.
Pointing to the threat of the abortifacient
“morning after pill,” and surgical
abortion methods, Tallabs warns that the future
of Mexico is at stake, and fears that it may face
the same crisis faced by European countries that
have reached birth rates of only 1.3 per
children. “We’re headed there,” she
said. As a result of its low birth rate, Europe’s
population is steadily aging and is facing labor
shortages and increasing immigration pressures
from the Arab world, where the birth rate is much
higher.


Canadian
Women Sue Birth Control Pill Manufacturer

TORONTO,
June 8, 2010 (LifeSIteNews.com) – A group
of Canadian women is suing Bayer Pharmaceutical,
claiming that the contraceptive pill manufacturer
does not adequately inform users of the potential
serious health risks associated with the oral
contraceptives Yaz and Yasmin.The legal firm of
Siskinds LLP is representing the group. It will
present evidence that the hormonal birth control
pills cause conditions ranging from decreased
bone density to strokes, gallbladder problems
leading to surgery, pulmonary embolisms, and
numerous other serious health issues. Matthew
Baer, legal counsel at Siskinds, told the media
that he has evidence about the health risks of
the product, which uses drospirenone, a synthetic
progestin that has been linked to over 25,000
reported cases of adverse effects and several
deaths. “We’re hearing about pulmonary
embolisms, deep vein thrombosis, stroke and, a
more unusual one, people having issues with their
gallbladders,” he told CTV. The
lawsuit alleges that Bayer downplayed the serious
side effects of the pills, failed to conduct
proper research before releasing them onto the
market, and failed adequately to warn patients
and doctors about the increased health risk
associated with use of Yasmin and Yaz. Over 100
lawsuits have been filed in the U.S. against
Bayer by Yasmin and Yaz users. Several medical
advisory groups have called for an outright ban
on the contraceptives. The Swiss Federation of
Service to Patients recently called for a ban on
Yaz, Yasmin and other contraceptive pills
containing drospirenone, after the drug was
linked to the death of a 17-year-old German girl
who died in a Swiss hospital. This was the third
serious incident reported in Switzerland last
year involving such contraceptives. In each case,
the women suffered pulmonary embolisms. In May of
2009, a woman ended up severely disabled after a
three-month coma, and in September another woman
died. This past weekend a coalition of pro-life
groups, led by the American Life League (ALL),
sponsored “The Pill Kills” day. The
annual event, which took place June 5, seeks to
provide women with information on the dangers of
hormonal birth control that the pill
manufacturers suppress. This year’s “The
Pill Kills” day added an environmental note
to the health concerns of contraceptive drugs.
Under the title “Protest the Pill Day: The
Pill Kills the Environment” organizers
presented the often hidden negative effects of
hormonal contraceptives on the ecosystem. Katie
Walker, Communications Director for ALL, observed
that, “In a world obsessed with ‘going
green,’ we hope to use this hypocritical
acceptance of birth control – which is a
notorious pollutant – to open up a
conversation about the pill that you won’t
hear anywhere else.” “Scientists are
discovering ‘intersex’ fish in various
areas around the world,” said Marie
Hahnenberg, The Pill Kills project director.
“Studies in the United States, from
California to Maryland (including the Potomac
River), have revealed that some male fish have
been feminized by the vast quantities of
synthetic estrogen in the water.”
“It’s about time women were made aware
that the birth control they are taking could have
negative consequences on their health and on the
environment,” said Judie Brown, president
and cofounder of American Life League. “They
deserve the truth – regardless of political
pressure to conceal it.”


26
Pro-Life Groups Unite in Nationwide Protest
Against Birth Control Pill

http://vimeo.com/moogaloop.swf?clip_id=12090300&server=vimeo.com&show_title=1&show_byline=1&show_portrait=0&color=&fullscreen=1

The Birth Control Pill
Documentary
from T Herbert on Vimeo.

________________

WASHINGTON,
D.C., June 1, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) –
American Life League and 26 other pro-life
organizations have joined together for
“Protest the Pill Day: The Pill Kills the
Environment” on June 5. At the national
event launch at 11 a.m. outside of Planned
Parenthood of Metropolitan Washington, D.C., Dr.
James Joyce, M.D., Jennifer Giroux, R.N., and
pro-life activists Marie Hahnenberg, Michael
Hichborn and Katie Walker will testify to the
harmful effects birth control has on our
environment and our health. The event will draw
attention to the environmental and health hazards
of the nation’s most commonly used
contraceptive method – the birth control
pill – which turns 50 years old this year.
“Scientists are discovering
‘intersex’ fish in various areas around
the world,” said Hahnenberg, The Pill Kills
project director. “Studies in the United
States, from California to Maryland (including
the Potomac River), have revealed that some male
fish have been feminized by the vast quantities
of synthetic estrogen in the water.”
Participating organizations say it is time to
expose what the pharmaceutical industry has been
hiding. “It’s about time women were
made aware that the birth control they are taking
could have negative consequences on their health
and on the environment,” said Judie Brown,
president and cofounder of American Life
League.”They deserve the truth –
regardless of political pressure to conceal
it.”…


Hormonal
Birth Control Pill Reduces Women’s Sexual
Function: Study

May
7, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) – At
the same time as the hormonal birth control pill
turns 50, researchers have found a link between
it and sexual dysfunction in the women who take
it. In a German study, 32 per cent of over 1000
women surveyed who took the pill, were found to
have some form of sexual dysfunction. “Our
data show that hormonal contraception in
particular, was associated with lower desire and
arousal scores when compared with other
contraceptives,” the researchers, led by
Lisa-Maria Wallwiener, MD, of the University of
Heidelberg, wrote. The group experiencing the
lowest levels of sexual dysfunction was that
using non-hormonal forms of birth control.
“The effect of hormones is there, we have an
association. But, at this time, we cannot say if
this is causality,” said co-author Dr.
Alfred Mueck, professor in the Centre of Women’s
Health at the University of Tubingen. “We
can only say there might be an effect of hormonal
contraceptives (on sexual functioning). But this
is only one factor beside other factors that can
influence sexual function.”A study,
published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine,
examined results from 1086 female German medical
students and found that those taking birth
control pills and other forms of hormonal
contraception were at the highest risk for low
libido and arousal problems. Lack of sexual
desire is the main problem that women report,
along with lack of orgasm, an inability to become
aroused, and painful intercourse.The researchers
believe that the pill can lower circulating
levels of testosterone, the hormone needed to
stimulate sexual desire and regulate blood flow
to the genitals, in both sexes.The journal’s
editor-in-chief, Dr. Irwin Goldstein, wrote,
“When you fool around with your sex steroid
hormones, you gamble with your sex
life.”“The value of this paper is to
remind us that 300 million users of the pill
(worldwide) are putting themselves at risk (of
sexual changes), with extremely limited informed
consent that this is happening,” Goldstein
said. The women, from six different medical
schools, filled out online questionnaires
designed to identify problems with sexual
function within the past four weeks based on the
“Female Sexual Function Index,” a
validated scale consisting of 19 questions on the
physical details of sexual function. Of the
group, about 90 per cent used contraception, and
almost all had been sexually active in the
previous four weeks. Eighty per cent were in a
“stable relationship,” that was defined
as having had the same sex partner for at least
the past six months. 70 per cent of the women
surveyed used hormonal contraceptives. Since
their introduction in the early 1960s, hormonal
contraceptives have become one of the two most
popular methods of artificial contraception, next
to sterilization, with an estimated 300 million
women using them worldwide. The U.S. Food and
Drug Administration approved the pill on May 9,
1960. Elaine Tyler May, 62, a University of
Minnesota history professor and author of the
book “America and the Pill” told
Associated Press this week that the expectations
held for the pill in the early 60s have failed to
materialize. “Married couples could have
happier sex with more freedom and less fear. The
divorce rate might go down and there would be no
more unwanted pregnancies,” she said.
“None of those things happened, not the
optimistic hopes or the pessimistic fears of
sexual anarchy.” Despite May’s
assurance about “sexual anarchy,”
however, statistics show that while the number of
people getting married continues to fall in most
western countries where the use of the pill is
common, those same countries have seen an
explosion of sexually transmitted diseases and
out-of-wedlock pregnancies. Nearly half of all
pregnancies in the U.S. are unintended and nearly
half of those end in abortion. Britain has been
especially susceptible to the sexual anarchy that
May says has not happened, with one of the highest
rates
of teenage pregnancy in the
developed world. While schools have become a
common source of free contraception for girls,
without parent’s knowledge or consent,
figures released this week by the Office of
National Statistics show that about 40,000
British girls under 18 became pregnant in 2008,
or 40 per 1000. A report issued by the
Relationships Foundation, a British think tank,
said that family breakdown is costing the British
taxpayer about £41.7 billion per year. This
estimate includes £12.38 billion in tax credits
and benefits, £4.27 billion in housing support,
and £13.68 billion in health and social care.


New
PRI Video Debunks Food Supply Fears: There’s Lots
of It

FRONT
ROYAL, Virginia, May 3, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) –
The Population Research Institute (PRI) has just
released the third video in its YouTube cartoon
series, designed to refute the idea of
overpopulation with science — and stick
figures.  Contrary to claims advanced by
population control advocates, the latest video
reveals data indicating that world hunger is not
caused by a lack of food, but by wars, lack of
transportation, and economic factors.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OXrN9HhnCcM&w=300&h=233]

To
date the series has garnered well over 200,000
views on YouTube, and has made PRI one of the
more popular non-profit channels on the video
channel. The latest video is available at
PRI’s web site. At just
under two minutes long, the video uses data from
the UN Food and Agricultural Organization and the
World Food Programme to explain world hunger and
reveal how overpopulation is not causing
it.  All this, while at the same time
remaining simple, humorous and – most importantly
– geek-friendly. “We’re excited to
offer another great installment of our highly
popular YouTube series,” says Steven Mosher,
PRI’s president.  “We can help
educate young and old alike through this online
video medium in the blessings of people, and do
an end run around the “lamestream”
media’s fixation on the outdated theory of
overpopulation.” “We also have a web
site devoted solely to these videos: www.overpopulationisamyth.com,”
says Colin Mason, Director of Media Production at
PRI.  “The site retains the aesthetic
of the videos, while getting into a little more
detail of the science itself.” “We’re
very excited about the site,” explains Joel
Bockrath, PRI’s Vice President for
Operations.  “All of our content is
downloadable. We think this could be a valuable
resource for students and teachers especially,
who may feel alone defending a sometimes
unpopular position.”


The
Pill’s Deadly Affair with HIV/AIDS

April
21, 2010 (pop,org) – The
world’s deadliest killer, HIV/AIDS, and the Birth
Control Pill have been carrying on a secret and
deadly “love affair” for decades.
While women swallowed their “freedom”
with the morning orange juice, studies that
should have made global headlines yellowed in
medical journals, unknown to the general public.
Only doctors learned about the pills deadly
affair with HIV/AIDS, and they were too busy
writing prescriptions for hormonal contraceptives
to talk.More than 50 medical studies, to date,
have investigated the association of hormonal
contraceptive use and HIV/AIDS infection. The
studies show that hormonal
contraceptives—the oral pill and
Depo-Provera—increase almost all known risk
factors for HIV, from upping a woman’s risk of
infection, to increasing the replication of the
HIV virus, to speeding the debilitating and
deadly progression of the disease.1
A medical trial published in the journal AIDS in
2009—monitoring HIV progression by the need
for antiretroviral drugs (ART)—saw “the
risk of becoming eligible for ART was almost 70%
higher in women taking the pills and more than
50% higher in women using DMPA [Depo-Provera]
than in women using IUDS.”2
Studies aside, it is well known that HIV/AIDS
strikes more women than men.  Some would
argue that this is a result of the desire of men
for young—and presumably uninfected, sexual
partners.  Few are willing to discuss a more
obvious explanation, namely, that the Pill and
Injectables render women particularly vulnerable
to HIV/AIDS.How serious is the problem?
Oral contraceptives and Depo-Provera are among
the world’s most popular and prevalent
contraceptive methods. According to one study,
“More than 100 million women worldwide use
hormonal contraception.”3 In
America, hormonal contraceptive rates are over
52% in unmarried women—those at greatest
risk of HIV/AIDS.  Moreover, in the interest
of lowering the birth rate, the UNFPA and USAID
continue unloading boatloads of hormonal
contraceptives on Africa, Haiti and other
AIDS-ravaged developing nations. The best
meta-analysis done to date, done by Dr. Chia Wang
and her colleagues, surveyed the consensus
results of the 28 best published studies since
1985.  They found that the “significant
association between oral contraceptive use and
HIV-1 seroprevalence or seroincidence
…  increased as study quality
increased.” In fact, “Of the best
studies, 6 of 8 detected an increased risk of HIV
infection associated with OC [oral contraceptive]
use.”4


On
the National Scale

Moreover,
Wang’s results showed even more of a Pill/HIV
link when they limited studies to those conducted
on African populations. This is significant for
two reasons:  First, sub-Saharan Africa is
home to the world’s earliest and largest
heterosexual HIV/AIDS epidemic, which to date has
infected an estimated 22.4 million5
people.  This is two-thirds of the total
number of infections worldwide.Second,
sub-Saharan Africa has endured decades of
contraception-focused population control programs
and countless hormonal-contraceptive trials.
“Among the six countries hardest hit by the
HIV/AIDS epidemic … two in three users in
the six countries rely on the OC (oral
contraceptives) or injectables,”6
said Iqbal Shah of the World Health
Organization.Likewise, Thailand, praised for a
contraceptive prevalence of 79.2% in 2000 and
upwards of 70% today, is a land where, “More
than one-in-100 adults in this country of 65
million people is infected with HIV.” 7
Among Thai women, “Oral contraception is the
most popular method.”8 9 On the
other hand, Japan’s HIV rate is, at 0.01%, one of
the lowest in the world.10  In this context,
it is important to note that the birth control
pill was illegal in Japan until 1999, and even
today only 1% of Japanese women use oral
contraception.  Similarly, the predominantly
Catholic Philippines, with a longstanding popular
resistance to contraception, boasts an HIV
“prevalence rate of only 0.02%.”11


Hormonal
Changes Heighten HIV Risk

The
studies that demonstrate a connection between
hormonal contraceptives and HIV/AIDS infection
postulate a number of mechanisms at work.
First, let’s review the basics.  The Human
Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), is carried in warm
blood or sexual fluids. It infects through
fragile, inflamed, bleeding or needle-pricked
tissue, attacks specific T-cells in the immune
system, and causes the incurable, debilitating
condition known as AIDS (Acquired
Immunodeficiency Syndrome). Hormonal
contraceptives increase almost all known risk
factors for HIV infection. Studies have found
that hormonal contraceptives “alter the
microenvironment of the female” 12
and boost the cell count of those specific cells
that HIV uses to infect and proliferate (HIV
co-receptor CCR5 in cervical CD4+ T lymphocytes).
What is more, a progesterone side effect known to
American women as “breakthrough
bleeding,” is caused when hormonal
contraceptives excessively thicken the uterine
lining. The large, bleeding surface of the uterus
creates an ideal site for HIV infection.
Progesterone also has an immunosuppressant
effect, which means that women using hormonal
contraceptives have less in the way of natural
defenses against HIV and other STDs, such as
chlamydial infection or genital herpes (HSV-2).13
14 In one study, “HSV-2 infection itself
more than tripled the risk of HIV
infection.”15 In the vagina,
increased blood and the independent hormonal
effects of the Pill eliminate the natural pH acid
protection against infection. What is more, a
famous study of rhesus macaques found that
hormonal contraceptives thin the vaginal walls
and markedly increase SIV infection (the monkey
equivalent of HIV).16 Vaginal dryness,
another side effect of hormonal contraceptives,
is not only painful but also makes one prone to
tears and abrasions—fertile sites for
infection.One study points out, “On a
cellular level, hormonal contraceptives have been
associated with cervical and vaginal
inflammation.”17 Further,
hormonal birth control causes the fragile
cervical tissue to grow beyond its natural bounds
and replace what would normally be thick,
protective membrane. This “cervical
ectopy” is dangerous because the cervix’s
thin surface is the main site of HIV infection.18
Given all these different ways that
hormonal contraception promotes HIV/AIDS
infection, it is not at all surprising that
several studies show women on the pill,
Depo-Provera, etc., are more likely to be
infected with not just one, but several variants
or strains of HIV.  This “in turn leads
to higher levels of viral replication and more
rapid HIV-1 disease progression.”19 20
21
Women on hormonal contraceptives are not
only more likely to contract HIV/AIDS, they are
also more likely to pass it along to their sexual
partners.  The three studies which focused
on “the impact of hormonal contraception on
cervical shedding of the cell-associated
virus”22 all found that
HIV-positive women on hormonal contraceptives are
far more likely shed HIV in their body
fluids.   High-dose pill users were
over 12 times more likely to shed the HIV virus
than women not using contraception, low-dose
users were almost 4 times more likely, and
Depo-Provera users were 3 times more likely.23


The
Pill Pushers Push Back

Some
dismiss out of hand the impressive body of
scientific research demonstrating a
Pill/HIV link. They quote from the handful of
studies and highly selective trials which claim
to find “no increase in HIV risk among users
of oral contraceptives and Depo-Provera.”24
The problem with many of these studies,
such as Mati et al. 1995, Kapiga et al. 1998, and
Sinei et al. 1996 is that they were conducted
with and through “family planning
clinics.” Since the chief business of these
clinics is the promotion, sale, and distribution
of contraceptives, the possibility of bias is
undeniable.  Who would trust Marlboro to
monitor a study on the link between cigarettes
and cancer? Moreover, the handful of studies that
deny a link between hormonal contraception and
increased risk of contracting HIV are dwarfed by
the more than 50 studies that have not only found
such a link, but convincingly explained precisely
what it is about such contraception that
contributes to the spread of the disease.
Yet population control groups continue to lobby
for more contraception, not less.  Take Dr.
Willard Cates, president of the Institute for
Family Health of Family Health International
(FHI), one of the major purveyors of hormonal
contraception to the developing world.
Wrote Cates to the Journal of American Medical
Association, “Preventing unintended
pregnancies among HIV-infected women who do not
currently wish to become pregnant is an important
and cost effective way of preventing new HIV
infections of infants. … More must be done
to ensure access to safe and effective
contraception for HIV-infected women.”25
Obviously, FHI’s concern here is less to prevent
the infection of preborn infants, than to
continue to contracept as many women as possible
with your tax dollars and mine.  What the
organization refuses to admit, however, is that
by doing so it is arguably contributing to the
spread of the HIV virus.  How many lives are
being lost because we continue to ship boatloads
of hormonal contraceptives to a continent and to
countries laboring under an HIV/AIDS
pandemic?   Isn’t it time that we
stopped?


UK
Woman Dies of Blood Clots after Ten Years on the
Pill

LIVERPOOL,
April 9, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) – A
28 year-old UK woman has died of deep vein
thrombosis after taking birth control pills for a
decade, the Daily Mail reports. Jenna Morris, a
bank worker who was planning to marry her live-in
fiancé Luke Hawson, was sent home sick from work
by doctors who told her she was suffering from
kidney stones. She died suddenly when blood clots
that formed in her legs spread to her lungs. Her
sister Suzanne confirmed that doctors said the
clots were “possibly caused by the
contraceptive pill.” “I am still in
shock,” she said. “I still cannot
believe what happened. I keep thinking it is a
dream. “People should be aware because it
could happen to anyone. Jenna was our beautiful
pink princess and a fantastic sister. I miss her
so much.”Studies are increasingly showing
connections between hormonal contraceptives and a
range of serious health risks. In 2005, Ortho
McNeil, a subsidiary of Johnson and Johnson, the
manufacturer of the hormonal birth control patch
Ortho Evra, admitted a link between their product
and stroke and death by blood clots. In 2003, the
journal Archives of Internal Medicine reported a
study showing that women who use birth control
pills greatly increase their risk of potentially
life threatening blood clots when they travel by
air. In 2007, researchers at the University of
Aberdeen published a study in the British Medical
Journal showing that women who took birth control
pills for over 8 years increased their risk of
cancer by 22 per cent. In 2008, researchers at
the University of Ghent found that, based upon a
study of 1,300 healthy women aged 35 to 55 living
in a small town in Belgium, women who take oral
contraceptives may have more plaque buildup in
their arteries. In the same year, a study
published in the Journal of Obstetrics and
Gynecology, conducted by the Department of
Biomedical Sciences and Technologies at the
University of Udine, in Italy, concluded that the
new, “third-generation” oral
contraceptives elevate the levels of
“C-reactive protein” (CRP) in women,
which in turn raises their risk of cardiovascular
disease.


United
Nations Report Warns of Dire Effects of
Underpopulation, Fertility Decline

New York,
NY (LifeNews.com/CFAM) — A
recently-released United Nations (UN) report
finds that the global trend of fertility decline
and population aging will have devastating
economic and societal effects on the developing
world, particularly on women who are now targeted
by UN agencies to further reduce fertility.
World
Population Ageing 2009
” was
published in December 2009 by the UN Population
Division, a statistics research branch within the
UN’s Department of Economic and Social
Affairs (DESA). Because fertility is decreasing
in the developing world, there will be fewer and
fewer workers to support aging citizens, the
report found. The ratio of workers to older
non-workers dropped from 12 to 9 between 1950 and
2009. By 2050, there will be only 4 workers
supporting every retiree: “The reduction of
potential support ratios has important
implications for social security schemes,
particularly for pay-as-you-go pension systems
under which taxes on current workers pay the
pensions of retirees.”The effects of
fertility decline and population aging will hit
the developing world hardest, according to the
report, because, “The pace of population
ageing is faster in developing countries than in
developed countries. Consequently, developing
countries will have less time to adjust to the
consequences of population ageing.”
Furthermore, “ageing in developing countries
is taking place at lower levels of socio-economic
development than has been the case for developed
countries.” Evidence in the report shows
that UN programs aimed at reducing fertility in
the developed world will do the most harm to
women who will have fewer children to support
them in their old age. Since women live longer
than men, they make up the majority of older
persons. This is compounded by the fact that
“Older persons living alone are at greater
risk of experiencing social isolation and
economic deprivation and may therefore require
special support.” Social support, however,
is often unavailable in the developing world
where women are least likely to have social
security from the state. What recourse they have
to social safety nets has been diminished by the
global economic downturn, which “brought
about sharp reductions in the value of pension
funds in many countries in the world.”
Fertility reduction in the developing world is
still pushed by UN agencies such as the UN
Population Fund (UNFPA) and the World Health
Organization, as well as non-governmental
organizations such as International Planned
Parenthood Federation and Women Deliver, a new
organization that is garnering significant
funding from developed countries to promote
fertility control. The report offered little
evidence of a possible reversal of the global
aging trend, stating that “Population ageing
is unprecedented, a process without parallel in
the history of humanity. Population ageing is
pervasive since it is affecting nearly all the
countries of the world. …and
“Population ageing is enduring. …As long
as old-age mortality continues to decline and
fertility remains low, the proportion of older
persons will continue to increase.” The UN
Population Division – an entity distinct
from UNFPA – has traditionally been regarded
as more objective and less agenda-driven than
other UN agencies. In its most recent State of the
World Population Report
, UNFPA
called for increased efforts to reduce fertility
to combat climate change.


Women
Sue Birth Control Manufacturer over Serious
Health Issues

Indiana,
February 22, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Over 50
women in Indiana have filed lawsuits against
Bayer Pharmaceuticals charging that use of the
company’s Yaz and Yasmin hormonal birth
control pills caused conditions ranging from
gallbladder-related injuries to strokes.There are
now over 25,000 similar reported cases across the
United States.In December LSN reported that over
100 lawsuits have been filed in the U.S. against
Bayer, alleging that the company has overstated
the benefits of the drugs, downplayed the
side-effects, and failed to conduct proper
research before releasing them onto the market.
William Riley, the lawyer who is representing
many of the women, told Fox 59 that he believes
the company was aware of the danger that their
product presented. “They’re not doing
adequate clinical studies and they are
aggressively marketing this to women, young
women,” he said. “We’re seeing an
increasing awareness of the very real health
risks associated with hormonal birth
control,” said Marie Hahnenberg, project
director of American Life League’s The Pill
Kills project. “For years, criticism of
birth control has been a sacrosanct topic, but
the victims of hormonal birth control are too
numerous to ignore any longer.” American
Life League’ s annual Protest the Pill Day
on June 5 seeks to educate women on the dangers
of hormonal birth control – a class one
carcinogen on the same level as tobacco –
through protests and activism at birth control
retailers nationwide.“The birth control
pill, patch, IUD, and similar birth control
products can cause blood clots, heart attacks and
pulmonary embolisms,” Hahnenberg said.
“How many lawsuits, injuries and even deaths
could be prevented if only women were properly
warned, or better yet, if these dangerous drugs
were taken off the market?”


Parliament
Report Sounds Alarm: Low Birth Rate + Aging =
Financial Crisis

OTTAWA,
February 18, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) – One of
the first official
reports
to indicate the disastrous
consequences of Canada’s long-term below,
replacement birth rate was released in Ottawa
today by Parliamentary Budget Officer Kevin
Page.  While pro-life leaders have been
warning of the impending disaster for years as
abortion and contraception have wreaked
demographic havoc, the financial fallout is
beginning to strike home to governments
worldwide. Taking into account Canada’s
steady 1.5 birth rate, far below the 2.1
replacement rate, along with the accompanying
ageing of the population, the report warns that
“a major demographic transition is
underway.” “During this time, the
ageing of the population will move an increasing
share of Canadians out of their prime working-
age and into their retirement years,” says
the report. “With an older population,
spending pressures in areas such as health care
and elderly benefits are projected to intensify.
At the same time, slower labour force growth is
projected to restrain growth in the economy,
which will in turn slow the growth of government
revenue.” The financial result is
devastating, says the report.  “The
Government’s current fiscal structure is not
sustainable over the long term,” says the
report.  In order to compensate for the low
birth rate the report says there must be very
substantial increases in taxation and major cuts
to government services, amounting to 14 to 28
billion dollars. The parliamentary report follows
about two and a half years after a Canadian
Senate committee released a report on
demographics, forebodingly entitled “The
Demographic Time Bomb: Mitigating the Effects of
Demographic Change in Canada”.
In that
report the auditor general of Canada was reported
as saying: “The demographic die is cast:
there is little we can do to reverse or even slow
the ag(e)ing of Canada’s population over the
coming decades. But it is certainly within our
power to plan better for it. And better planning
begins with better information concerning the
long-term fiscal implications of the coming
demographic shift.” LifeSiteNews (LSN) spoke
with demographer Robert Sassone, PhD, for some
perspective on the findings of the report.
Sassone, author of the “Handbook on
Popoulation,” explained that the situation
boils down to this: “Too many needy people
and too few workers means big trouble ahead for
Canada.” According to the UN World
Population Prospects, the 2004 Revision,
Canada’s births during the 1950-1965 baby
boom years averaged 436,000 per year.
“These are the people who will soon retire,
leaving the workforce and joining those needing
social security payments and other assistance
from the government,” explained Dr.
Sassone.  “In contrast, less than
400,000 were born every year since.” This
much smaller number of people entering the
workforce will now be faced with paying the taxes
for the benefits of the much larger number of
baby boomers reaching retirement age each year
beginning in 2015.  The number retiring each
year will be substantially greater than the
number entering the work force each year, so the
total number of workers will decline as the
amount of money required for retirees
skyrockets.” Unfortunately the scenario is a
spiraling one and gets successively worse.
“Another serious problem is that as these
baby boomers age, they will require far more
medical care, so Canada’s medical system
will have to cope with a vast increase in demand
and a substantial decline in medical
personnel,” says Sassone.  “But
these near future problems will be tiny compared
to what we face after 2030.  The increased
taxes necessary due to the birth dearth and the
desire for new technology such as computers,
Ipods, cell phones, et al. make it harder for
young families to afford new babies.” The
solution to the problem says Sassone will not be
found in immigration.  He explained:
“In the past Canada could solve this problem
of too few babies, then too few workers by
encouraging massive immigration, but can no
longer do so for four reasons.  1) These
problems caused by past low birth rate make
Canada a far less attractive country to immigrate
to; 2) the number of babies born in the world has
declined every year since 1985-1990 so there are
fewer young workers seeking to immigrate; 3) new
technology and the improving world economy have
enabled most formerly poor countries to improve
living conditions so that fewer want to
immigrate, and 4) Europe and the US are now
competing with Canada for large numbers of
immigrants, making it harder for Canada to
attract immigrants.”The key to solving the
problem lies in increasing the fertility
rate.  And beyond making abortion illegal,
which will help, Dr. Sassone said, “we must
change the attitudes of people towards having
babies.” The mainstream media, and
especially the entertainment media is key in the
battle.  “The media for 40 years has
been trying to diminish the fertility rate,”
said Sassone.  “I have attended
meetings starting in 1970 where writers and
producers were invited and told they had to
reduce fertility to save the world and were
offered a prize for the best TV program in the
next year to reduce fertility.” Such
ventures may sound conspiratorial, however the
evidence for them abounds.  One such group
“Population Communications
International” boasts of their efforts on
their website: http://www.population.org/


Study:
Low-Dose Birth Control Pills Decrease Bone
Density in Young Women

SEATTLE,
January 21, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) – A new
study showing a link between long-term use of
oral contraceptives and a decrease in bone
density in women under the age of 30 has found
that the modern low-dose forms of estrogen pills
have the greatest risk of harming a woman’s bone
density. The study, published in the January
issue of Contraception Journal, measured bone
mineral density (BMD) of the hip, spine, and
whole body to analyze how both the duration of
taking the contraceptive pill and the estrogen
dose affected bone density in young women.
Researchers studied 606 women, aged 14 to 30, and
found a 5.9 percent decrease in bone mineral
density of the spine in young women taking birth
control pills for longer than one year, as
compared with those not taking oral
contraceptives. BMD of the whole body was shown
to be decreased by 2.3 percent in those taking
the pill. Low-dose estrogen pills containing less
than 30 micrograms ethinyl estradiol, which
include such brands as the Yaz, Yasmin, Levlen,
Desogen and others, were found to cause the most
bone loss in the study. “I think the
evidence is still emerging on this association,
but our findings suggest that low-dose oral
contraceptives with long-term use have some
impact on bone density,” said study author
Delia Scholes, a senior investigator at the Group
Health Research Institute of Group Health
Cooperative in Seattle. Background information in
the study notes that most of the estimated 12
million oral contraceptive (OC) users in the U.S.
are under 30 years of age and in the critical
period for bone mass accumulation. Research has
shown that estrogen plays an important role in
the development and maintenance of bone mass,
which has caused concern since hormonal
contraceptives alter the amount of estrogen a
woman’s body naturally produces. Though the
research report states that the long-term impact
of bone loss from oral contraceptives is unknown,
or if stopping use of OCs could reverse the
negative effects, the study suggests that use of
the pill could lead to bone problems such as
osteoporosis or fractures later in life. Scholes
states, “If oral contraceptives are indeed
causing the approximately 5 percent lower spine
bone density for oral contraceptive users …
and if that impact is not reversed with oral
contraceptive discontinuation or with other
factors that may occur across the life span, a 5
percent lower bone density after menopause is
associated with approximately 50 percent more
osteoporotic fractures.” This study augments
earlier work showing that hormonal contraceptives
negatively affect bone density. In 2004, the
United States Food and Drug Administration and
the United Kingdom Committee on the Safety of
Medicines cited bone mineral density loss when
they issued warnings on the use of the
progestin-only injectable contraceptives.


Why
is National Cancer Institute Covering up Link?:
Abortion Breast Cancer Coalition Letter to
Congress

WASHINGTON,
January 21, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) –
The US National Cancer Institute (NIC) has again
denied the link between abortion and breast
cancer to a Globe and Mail reporter, despite one
of their leading researchers being named as
co-author on a study that admitted up to a 40 per
cent increased risk of breast cancer associated
with induced abortion. In 2003, Louise Brinton,
NCI’s chief of the Hormonal and Reproductive
Epidemiology branch, was an organizer of the NCI
workshop in 2003 that told women it is “well
established” that “abortion is not
associated with increased breast cancer
risk.” Then, in 2009, Brinton was co-author
of study, published in April last year by the
Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in
Seattle, in which she admitted that abortion
raises breast cancer risk. The study listed
abortion among the “known or suspected risk
factors” found to be associated with a 40
per cent increased risk of breast cancer in women
under age 45 in the Seattle region. The observed
risk elevation found was matter-of-factly
reported to be “consistent with the effects
observed in previous studies on younger
women.” Despite the admission by one of
their leading researchers, the NCI website
continues to carry the “well
established” claim that there is no
connection between abortion and breast cancer. On
January 8 the Globe and Mail’s Gloria
Galloway wrote that she received another denial
from the NCI when she attempted to receive
confirmation on the study. The NCI’s Michael
Miller told Galloway in an email, “NCI has
no comment on this study.” Instead, Miller
forwarded a link to the NCI’s official
statement denying the breast cancer link that
refers back to the 2003 workshop. Further
requests for information, Galloway said, went
unanswered. At the same time, the
Washington-based Coalition for Abortion/Breast
Cancer has issued a letter to Congress asking
that the NCI be called to the carpet for what the
coalition says is NCI’s ongoing efforts to
ignore or cover up the evidence supporting the
link. “We ask Congress to exercise its
proper oversight authority and investigate the US
National Cancer Institute’s failure to
protect American women by issuing timely warnings
about breast cancer risks,” the letter said.
The letter is signed by Karen Malek, the
group’s president, Dr. Joel Brind, a
professor of endocrinology and deputy chair of
Biology and Environmental Sciences at City
University of New York, and Dr. Angela
Lanfranchi, Clinical Assistant Professor of
Surgery at Robert Wood Johnson Medical School. It
says that thousands of women’s lives are put
at risk “in part due to confusing and
conflicting messages from our own National Cancer
Institute.” The letter states that
researchers invited to participate in NCI’s
2003 workshop, despite the claim that it would
comprise a “comprehensive review” of
the existing data, were explicitly prohibited
from reviewing current data demonstrating a link
between abortion and breast cancer. “Women
need to be aware that abortion can affect both
her breast cancer risk and health of future
children,” the letter said. It notes that
the NCI website was updated on January 12 this
year, after news about the recent study broke,
and now includes the claim that “the
evidence overall still does not support early
termination of pregnancy as a cause of breast
cancer.” “In the face of recent
publication of results to the contrary …
reported by an NCI Branch Chief Dr. Brinton, this
appears disingenuous,” says the
coalition’s letter. “The evidence is
overwhelming that the NCI is in direct conflict
with its own mission. The NCI is not providing
accurate information that would permit women
making choices about contraception and abortion
to avoid the dangers of the increased risk posed
by these exposures, even though they are reported
by one of NCI’s top scientists in the
field.”


“Pro-Choice”
but Spreading Natural Family Planning

EDMONTON,
Alberta, January 14, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com)
– Contrary to the popular
understanding, Catholics are not the only ones
interested in or promoting natural family
planning (NFP). One secular organization in
Edmonton, despite being avowedly in
favor of “reproductive freedom,” has
responded to the increasing body of
evidence highlighting the dangers of
hormonal contraceptives (i.e. the pill) and is
now working to convince women that NFP is a far
better method of controlling fertility. Geraldine
Matus, founder of Justisse
Healthworks for Women
(JHW) has
been teaching natural family planning since
1977.  She uses the Justisse method,
which tracks mucus secretions, temperature, and
cervical position. While Matus’ approach to
NFP deviates from the Catholic Church’s
approach in crucial ways, such as
her approval of the use of condoms during
fertile times (the Church teaches that NFP
can only be used to avoid pregnancy for truly
“grave” reasons, and condemns even the
whiff of a “contraceptive mentality”),
Matus is part of a small but growing movement
outside the Church that is rebelling against the
dominance of the pill and searching for more
“natural” alternatives. The scope of
the trend was recently highlighted by remaks made
by the director of a former
Planned Parenthood clinic who bemoaned the lack
of information about NFP, and criticized
those who view the pill as the “be-all and
end-all.” Matus, who received part of her
education at a Catholic institute for human
reproduction (from which she was expelled due to
her promotion of condoms and her practice of
abortion counseling), says she believes that
all women should learn NFP, both because of the
pill’s dangers and because it promotes
self-awareness.  NFP is “really about
empowering women through knowledge of their body,
and giving them a safe choice,” she told
LifeSiteNews (LSN). “My concerns about the
pill from the get-go, so that’s a long time, have
been its association with clotting disorders,
heart disease, bone loss, muscle loss, the
disruption of the reproductive health of women in
terms of disrupting how their fertility unfolds,
and the recovery of fertility when they come off
of the pill,” she said. About NFP she
said, “I felt that every woman should
have that particular knowledge about her body,
that it was critical for her sense of self and
well-being.” For Matus, NFP is
“pro-choice.”  The pill has served
for several decades as an icon of “women’s
liberation,” but Matus told LSN that
she believes it is NFP that actually promotes
women’s freedom. “If I’m taking a pill that
requires no knowledge of how my reproductive
system works, and actually suppresses the true
nature of how my reproductive system works, that
takes me away from knowing my body,” she
said.  “If I experience my menstrual
cycle month after month after month over many
years, I start to learn about myself.”
“A lot of women have these experiences but
don’t know how to translate them, make sense of
them,” she continued, “so fertility
awareness and natural family planning helps women
make sense of these experiences, by making sense
of them they become less frightening, and then we
can begin to honour and respect them.” Not
only does a woman gain crucial knowledge about
her own body through NFP, said Matus, but
“there’s usually a much more respectful
attitude that’s taken with respect to sexual
choices. I like that. It’s a very interesting
thing.” JHW promotes their method as a way
of both avoiding pregnancy as well as achieving
pregnancy, just as other NFP methods, such as
NaProTechnology, have done.  Because of the
“holistic health practices” that JHW
advocates, explained Matus, they have helped
numerous couples conceive who had been
unsuccessful with the aid of infertility
treatments. Despite its documented effectiveness, both for
preventing and achieving pregnancy, as well as
the growing evidence documenting the health
dangers of contraceptive drugs, NFP continues to
be largely scorned by the medical community.
Matus said that, “for the most
part, [the medical community] is
suspicious.”  “There’s a fear that
women wouldn’t know how to do this, or that their
partner wouldn’t cooperate,” she explained,
“which are very real fears. But also there’s
a lack of knowledge and education in the medical
community about this.” While Catholics have
led the field in developing and promoting natural
family planning methods, recognition of their
many benefits is becoming increasingly more
mainstream, as Canada’s major media have pointed out
in recent months. “[NFP] should
appeal to all women,” said Fr. Joe
Hattie, O.M.I., spiritual director for WOOMB
Canada, in response to questions about the
movement of NFP into the mainstream,
“because they all have the right to a better
understanding of their own reproductive gifts,
grounded in the very fact of their
femininity.” “If they’re going to use
good stewardship of the gifts of their fertility,
then they have the right to a good education and
a good management of that fertility, in harmony
with natural law and God’s plan for them,”
he said. “The Catholic Church doesn’t have a
monopoly, we might say, on the science,”
continued Fr. Hattie, who is also the director of
marriage and family for the Archdiocese of
Halifax.  “With [NFP], the Church has
put science at the service of women’s health and
marriage.  So, if others are using that to
help couples, to help women better understand
themselves and to take better stewardship of
their fertility, in harmony with natural law,
then that’s good.”

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