Take this pill or don’t get paid


The new method aimed at preventing children being born into welfare dependent families has emerged.  The proposal is this: take the Oral Contraceptive Pill (OCP) or don’t get paid.  Welfare systems these days can be so good that they allow people to have children for a living at the cost of the tax payer, those of us who endure the hardships of work day after day, to have our hard earned cash taken and given to those who choose not to.

In any society- human, animal, insect; each member of the community has their place and has a role to play.  For example, people need doctors and that is the service I provide, Doctors need lawyers and lawyers need mechanics and the cycle continues.  We all contribute something.  But what about those who don’t? We as a society have decided that we should help those in ‘need’ (I might add at this point that this discussion does not include those who are legitimately unable to work).  But we have gone too far and it has now become an expectation that if you don’t work the taxpayers will feed you, house you and care for children (however many you wish to have).  Should people on welfare be ‘allowed’ to have children?

The short answer is of course, yes.  You cannot prevent someone from choosing to engage in intercourse, nor can you deny them their choice to have a child.  But you can deny them taxpayer money for that child.  The grey area then becomes, what about the child?  Is it fair that the child should have to go without basic human rights like food and shelter because of parental decisions? Well, no.  Then is it fair that the taxpayers should have to fund the many children of the unemployed? No.  Then how do we solve this?

The government wants to instil a policy that would restrict welfare payments to those taking the OCP.  My first concern with this policy is regarding how any such program could possibly be monitored?  My second concern is the side effects from the pill, such as increased risk of deep vein thrombosis and the possible deadly consequences and a woman’s choice between feeding her children or risking those complications.  My third issue is that this only applies to women; unemployed men would be unrestricted in their procreation and would still receive their welfare.

Don’t get me wrong.  I am just as tired as the next person paying for everyone else’s children.  We have developed into a society where the less educated seem to be procreating at an astounding rate, while the highly educated procreate thoughtfully.  This is not good from a societal or evolutionary view point.  So what is the solution?

My belief has always been that so much can be solved with something as simple as education.  We are not taught about the basics of living life in the classroom, about raising an infant, about how difficult it might be to survive on welfare, about money and bills, about safe sex, about how to manage relationships, about decent jobs that don’t require you to be an academic, about societal structure.  We seem to learn all of this once we have already made our choices, like being pregnant at 16, then we must just learn as we go and struggle through a life path we may not have chosen had we been fully educated about the consequences.  But there is no going back.

A forced oral contraceptive pill is one step in the right direction.  We have stepped from fixing the problem of welfare dependent families to attempting to prevent it.  But I believe we need to take it a step further, we need to step back once more and start looking at education as the key to prevention.  This is particularly true for children who do not have a family to show them the way, to break the cycle.

Put simply, as tempting as it sounds, we cannot force any group of society to take a drug and risk its side effects or choose to go without.  But we can educate, something so simple, and then allow people to make more informed decisions about their future.  It’s a start anyway.

–  The Doctor

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