New York City Parents Elated About Morning-After Pill For 11-Year-Olds

“It’s just a wonderful feeling knowing my government cares enough about our children to provide them with the emergency birth control I didn’t have access to when I was in 6th grade.”     —  Linda “Sunny” Rothchild, NYC

NEW YORK – New York City mayoral candidate, Christine Quinn, says she’s open to allowing middle-school girls as young as eleven to receive the morning-after contraceptive pill, also known as “Plan B.”

“This is a really important option we need to make accessible,” Quinn said.  “I understand it can make some people uncomfortable. We need to recognize the reality of what’s happening in children’s lives and give them what they need to make the right choices and protect themselves.”

Manhattan residents, Dylan and Epiphany Klanker, were delighted to learn Christine Quinn supports making the morning-after pill available for middle-school students. Their eldest daughter, Brittany, who turned eleven last week, is starting 6th grade this year. For her birthday the Klankers threw a big sleepover party at the Upper West Side brownstone they inherited from Dylan’s grandfather. As they’ve done for all Brittany’s sleepovers since she turned ten, the Klankers provided pizza from Chuck E Cheese and a large fishbowl filled with condoms. Sleeping arrangements are left to the discretion of the children.

Christine Quinn

“After Brittany was born my husband and I became advocates for women’s rights,” Epiphany said. “As teenagers in the early 80’s we didn’t have access to free condoms at school let alone the morning-after pill. Back then, when a 13-year-old got pregnant an abortion was impossible without parental consent. We were determined to ensure our little girl’s precious teen years weren’t shattered by the same draconian laws that destroyed our childhoods.”

The Klankers, who own and operate two non-profit sustainable shoe stores in Soho and Westchester, don’t believe a woman’s control over her body should be diminished because of age.

“I’ve raised my daughter to understand that her body doesn’t belong to a bunch of old white men,” Dylan said. “My wife and I are kind of hoping Brittany is a lesbian so she won’t have to deal with men at all. But if she is straight we’re doing what we can to spark her interest in men of color and undocumented immigrants.”

Sandi Lowenstein Washington is a waitress who lives in Crown Heights with her 12-year-old daughter, Afrodytee. She’s enthusiastic about the idea of free contraception at school.

“I joke around with my 12-year-old daughter that I’m too young to be a grandmother. But then, I am only 28! If she wants to get pregnant she can wait until I get older,” Sandi laughed. “I don’t make a big salary, so the idea that my little baby girl can get morning-after pills at school for free is a huge help. And it’s not going to hurt if she can bring a few extra home for mom, too.”

Ethan C.H. Bartholomew, a Columbia University professor whose new book, Empowerment Through Conformity, arrives in bookstores next month, is quite excited about government supplying middle-school students with morning-after pills.

“For healthy self-esteem it’s imperative that a young woman have control over her body. Leaving the decision up to parents is barbaric. Who are they to decide what age is appropriate for their daughters to make their own decisions? And why stop at eleven? I’ve met many precocious 10-year-olds who have the wherewithal to make their own choices about their bodies. In a university funded study I conducted several years ago I was able to show conclusively that the younger a woman begins experimenting with her body the more popular she becomes, which invariably leads to higher self-esteem.”

Results from a Huffington Post survey last week at a South Bronx middle-school concurs with Professor Bartholomew’s research. An overwhelming percentage of male students surveyed said they would admire and respect female classmates who took advantage of the morning-after pill and think less of the girls who chose not to.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Comments are closed.