Like so many in the Fox News supported "pro-life" community, Martha MacCallum is "horrified" by the availability of emergency contraception because it makes it "too easy" for slutty sluts to "end a pregnancy" - an assertion that is, scientifically speaking, not true as the pill prevents ovulation. Now that an OMG Reagan appointed judge has ruled that Plan B be made available, over the counter, to women of all ages, the anti-choice community is freaking out. The FDA, which is appealing the ruling, has lowered the minimum age, for accessing the drug, from 17 to 15. So not surprisingly, its media mouthpiece is on board with this patented "outrage." Yesterday, alleged "news" anchor, Martha MacCallum allowed Fox doctor Manny Alvarez to dominate the "fair & balanced" discussion with his histrionics about this "political" ruling. And not surprisingly, she agreed with him!
MacCallum framed the requisite Fox "controversy" by citing her upcoming discussion as being about the "hot and serious topic over the controversy surrounding over the counter sales of Plan B to (she scrunched up her pretty face) people as young as 15." She quoted Fox's Dr. Manny Alvarez who wrote that "this decision is an example of how our health care is broken and no one is really watching what's going on it seems that this administration changes when there is a hard decision to make." Fair & balanced Martha didn't tell the viewers that Obama's HHS administration had set policy which required that girls under 17, seeking to buy Plan B, would need a prescription - a policy overturned by the judge.
Jehmu Greene said she was glad that there are no longer obstacles in getting the drug and that the FDA should be applauded for choosing science over politics. MacCallum whined that parents "are not included in this equation" because "this means that a 15 year old can walk into a pharmacy and do something to dramatically change what's going on in your body." (Right, and they can buy Tylenol and cough syrup, too)
Dr. Manny started the rant which earned him plaudits from Rush Limbaugh. He claimed that "politics are getting their nose into health care." He wanted to know "when is a 15 year old child a woman, give me a break..." He bounced up and down as he shouted about how it's his and his wife's responsibility "to bring that to fruition, not the federal government, not the president, not anybody else." He continued to bray about how "some judge in NY questions that, everybody runs for the hills, nobody wants to make the hard decisions...and now it's 15 years." He expressed dismay over the new age limit, asked "what's gonna happen," and predicted that "soon, somebody is going to make the argument that it should be when they're born, come on." Martha murmured "yeah." He shouted about side effects that he's going to be "telling the American public" about.
MacCallum said that she has read warnings on allergy medications for my kids. Alvarez held up the prescription warning sheet which was the standard size for a prescription and said that a 15 year old can't understand the potential side effects. (Course if they get good sex education, which is opposed by the right wing for whom Fox serves as a mouthpiece, they would learn about that.)
Greene retorted that not all 15 year olds have involved parents and that the over the counter availability is a benefit for all women. MacCallum was "scared" that jr. high school students will tell each other not to worry about it, Greene said that research shows that teens understand that this is not a replacement for ongoing birth control. Alvarez screamed that there is "overwhelming evidence" that college women sometimes use emergency contraception as their routine method of birth control. He blithered that "it becomes a habit." MacCallum asked about long lasting implications when girls decide to have a baby. Alvarez agreed but did admit that there shouldn't be a problem "if used properly" by those "with adult attitudes" but not 15. Neither Dr. Manny nor MacCallum mentioned that the medication is very expensive.
"Truth Out" has a brilliant analysis of the propaganda used in a Fox News website article about Plan B. Some of the "propaganda devices," used to spread misinformation and propaganda, were utilized in MacCallum's discussion: "Assertion" - college women use Plan B as birth control. "Cognitive Bias" - Greene's comments were sandwiched between Alvarez's long statements. "Red Herring" - Questions were asked about whether 15 year old girls can understand the risks. And, of course, "Bad Science" - fear mongering about side effects which, according to extensive research, do not pose a problem. Pregnancy carries far more risk.
As the Columbia Journalism Review stated, in deconstructing Alvarez's recent fear mongering article about Plan B, "a physician tows the party line on Plan B and science takes a hit." Fox News, "fair & balanced" as always!