If you’re out at the big birthday celebration

A Republican state senator in Alaska really doesn’t think much of women.

He wants the state to provide free pregnancy tests in bars.

Kelly envisions the government contracting with a nonprofit to make the tests widely available at places that serve alcohol. As he explains, “So if you’re drinking, if you’re out at the big birthday celebration and you’re kind of like, ‘Gee, I wonder if I…?’ You can just go in the bathroom and there should be a plastic, Plexiglas bowl in there, and that’s part of the public relations campaign, too. You’re going to have some kind of card on there with a message.” 

The interviewer asked Kelly whether he would also support offering state-funded birth control in bars. Alaska does not accept federal money from the government’s Medicaid expansion, which would fund contraception, and state Sen. Fred Dyson (R-Eagle River) recently spoke out against it, declaring that if people can afford lattes, they can afford birth control. In response to the birth control question posed by Anchorage Daily News, Kelly said he wouldn’t support it:

No, because the thinking is a little opposite. This assumes that if you know, you’ll act responsibly. Birth control is for people who don’t necessarily want to act responsibly.

What? Using birth control is not acting responsibly? It’s irresponsible to use birth control? It’s responsible to refrain from using birth control, regardless of whether or not you actually want to conceive?

Nope, I can’t get that to make sense, no matter how I turn it and hold it up to the light.


  1. mastmaker says

    The thinking seems to be loud and clear. Sex = bad.

    However, it is hard to imagine that these persons are going without sex all this time. So, the (unspoken) thinking seems to be: My sex = ok, all others’ sex = bad.

    They conclude (without enough reason) that their religion forbids (at least non-procreative) sex and then they run around trying to legislate that position on to the rest of the world. F*#k these ‘god’s messengers’!

  2. Al Dente says

    state Sen. Fred Dyson (R-Eagle River) recently spoke out against it, declaring that if people can afford lattes, they can afford birth control.

    The people who can afford lattes make too much money to qualify for Medicare.

  3. iknklast says

    Lattes? Cheap compared to birth control. Though I suppose if you drank lattes every day, it might add, it still isn’t likely it would add up to the cost of birth control. Unless lattes cost way more in Alaska, and birth control way less, than in Nebraska (where I live, and since it rhymes with Alaska…)

    As for responsible, these folks think responsible people abstain from sex until marriage, at which time women have sex when, and only when, the husband wants it. I grew up in their world. My parents would no more have allowed me to have birth control as a teen than they would have allowed me to drink cyanide. They considered them equally dangerous.

    Why it isn’t dangerous to let a teenage girl run around without birth control I never understood. Even if all girls were like me and had no boyfriends until their 20s, there are all sorts of sexual predators out there who do all sorts of nasty things to women, and my parents were not among that lunatic fringe that believes you cannot get pregnant from rape. Their lunacy was a bit more restrained.

  4. octopod says

    Well, I’m not sure the idea itself is a bad one. Free pregnancy tests in public places? Seems pretty useful. (Not even just bars; not sure why bars specifically.)

  5. Trebuchet says

    The thinking seems to be loud and clear. Sex = bad.

    That’s incomplete. It should be “Sex is bad, if you’re female, and not trying to produce multiple children for your lord and master.

  6. notyet says

    @5 Octopod. Pretty sure it was a bit of standard Republican slut shaming. As in,”You whores go out and get drunk and knocked up one week and the next week you are out drinking and damaging that precious little unborn child.” Because obviously, any woman who drinks can’t remember how many guys she had sex with last week. These assholes make me twice as angry when I realize that half of them are out looking for exactly “that” girl. Last week, Senator Richard Ross proposed a bill to require that any woman going through a divorce, obtain permission from a judge to date or have sex. The article did not mention if he thought that the penalty for breaking this law should include stoning.

  7. Gordon Willis says

    Birth control is for people who don’t necessarily want to act responsibly.

    It’s not necessarily, Ophelia. You know, people who don’t necessarily want. Does anybody want not necessarily? Oh no, sorry, I missed the responsibly. How profoundly stupid of me. People who are not necessarily responsible. Of course, that explains everything. How stupid of me to find it completely incomprehensible. Perhaps it’s a let-out phrase, as in “I never said ‘people who don’t want to act responsibly ’ ”, whatever he thinks “responsibly” means. So he probably doesn’t mean anything in particular, but he certainly means it very positively (being in his way a businessman?).

    I suppose this is a self-consciously modified knee-jerk, such as you have after the first half-dozen words. “Birth-control — isn’t that about having sex without being married? Yuk. Definitely not necessarily responsible at all. But finding out whether you’re pregnant, now…”.

    Irrelevant complaint: I’m not really getting used to you wierd people having bathrooms in “bars” (or airports or anywhere really except at home). I hope this strange fashion will stay very firmly in America. Thankfully, we don’t yet have them in British pubs, but I suppose only time will tell. Is “toilet” really a rude word, and if so, is that because it’s British or because it’s, well, you know, it’s — well, you know, it’s not necessarilyyou know…? Don’t answer this.

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