Surprise! Catholics and Evangelicals Use Birth Control Too
Not surprising, but putting it out there for the folks who think that there’s actually some sort of legitimate debate about contraception in the the United States — it’s really only fringe anti-choicers who oppose birth control. And yet those fringe anti-choicers seem to be calling the shots right now when it comes to Planned Parenthood funding? Anyway: Religious women use birth control. Shocking!
Contraceptive use by Catholics and Evangelicals—including those who attend religious services most frequently—is the norm, according to a new Guttmacher report. This finding confirms that policies making contraceptives more affordable and easier to use reflect the needs and desires of the vast majority of U.S. women and their partners, regardless of their religious beliefs.
“In real-life America, contraceptive use and strong religious beliefs are highly compatible,” says Rachel K. Jones, the report’s lead author. “Most sexually active women who do not want to become pregnant practice contraception, and most use highly effective methods like sterilization, the pill, or the IUD. This is true for Evangelicals and Mainline Protestants, and it is true for Catholics, despite the Catholic hierarchy’s strenuous opposition to contraception.”
Women of all sorts of belief systems can agree on one thing: It is not awesome to have a baby when you really don’t want a baby. Also:
* Among all women who have had sex, 99% have ever used a contraceptive method other than natural family planning. This figure is virtually the same among Catholic women (98%).
* Among sexually active women of all denominations who do not want to become pregnant, 69% are using a highly effective method (i.e., sterilization, the pill or another hormonal method, or the IUD).
* Some 68% of Catholic women use a highly effective method, compared with 73% of Mainline Protestants and 74% of Evangelicals.
* Only 2% of Catholic women rely on natural family planning; this is true even among Catholic women who attend church once a month or more.
* More than four in 10 Evangelicals rely on male or female sterilization, a figure that is higher than among the other religious groups.
Yay, we all love birth control!