Let’s talk about sex, safe sex

As you may have noticed — whether through posters, tables or even on our own front page — it’s Safer Sex Week. So, while you’re wandering around campus, pick up some free condoms, learn about some STDs and let’s talk about sex, baby.

Since we’re talking about safe sex, we’d like to discuss something that’s been tossed around as a new way to have safe sex: male birth control pills.

The introduction of the possibility of male birth control pills is significant for two reasons: it would help make the responsibility of birth control equal among sexes, and it would offer a more stimulating form of birth control for both partners — since a condom would not necessarily be required.

Of course, the idea of men taking birth control still seems to be a tad taboo. Even here at The Jambar office, we can’t reach a consensus on the issue, although most of us are in favor of it.

One of the big arguments against men using their own birth control is that some men aren’t willing to mess with their own hormones or are unsure of the side effects. The male birth control pills would increase testosterone in order to decrease sperm count.

And according to a 2009 study in the Journal of Endocrinology, the pill demonstrated at 95 percent effectiveness rate against pregnancy.

To flip that argument, women have been taking birth control pills that mess with their hormones since the 1960s. Man-made estrogen and progestin in birth control pills work together to prevent ovulation — which hasn’t been a big deal.

Males should take their part of the responsibility for contraceptives. If it’s OK for women to use man-made hormones to alter their body to do something unnatural, then it should be OK for men, too.


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