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Plan B: contraception or abortifacient? 

Universities across the country are grappling with how to function in a post-Roe America where thousands of their students are immersed in hook-up culture, inevitably leading to unexpected and “unwelcome” pregnancies. Their solution? Abortion by vending machine.

Thirty-nine colleges in 17 states now offer “emergency contraceptive” pills on their campuses in vending machines for easy access, and countless others are considering doing the same. Three of those 39 colleges reside in Washington State. In fact, Washington is leading the abortion-by-vending-machine charge, with our legislature devoting $200,000 to “establish [Plan B] vending machines on additional college campuses statewide.” Washington is the only state to allot for the distribution of Plan B in their state budget. This is disgraceful. 

Proponents of the vending machine at Washington State University say it has been “hugely successful” selling “more than 1,000 doses of emergency contraception since October, averaging about 130 boxes per month.”

The path colleges and universities are headed down is a dangerous one. Here’s why:

While many don’t consider Plan B anything more than a contraceptive, the truth is that Plan B has an abortifacient capacity. By preventing the attachment of a fertilized egg (an embryo) to the uterus, Plan B is ending the life created the moment a sperm cell and egg unite. 

“Women should know that right on the box, it’s explained Plan B can prevent a new life from implanting in the womb,” President of Students for Life Kristan Hawkins writes. Such life-ending properties need to be understood by the young women sold the drugs, along with better information on the effects of repeated doses of a mega hormone cocktail that can ‘turn your hormones upside down.’ Even proponents of it acknowledge a lack of thorough testing.”

In December 2022, the FDA released updated information about emergency contraception pills, saying it was no longer true that Plan B pills could prevent implantation of a fertilized egg, and that scientific evidence does not show it’s possible. 

But we know that the medical community has a long history of re-defining key pregnancy terms to make abortion more culturally acceptable – such as the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, an infamously pro-abortion organization, re-defining conception in the 1960s to mean implantation, rather than fertilization, when biologists have long-held the latter to be scientifically accurate. Even in 2011, a study found that most OB/GYNs agree life begins at fertilization, and a 2019 study found that 96% of biologists say the same.

This redefinition of Plan B’s function is no different. The medical community is denying the reality of pregnancy and life in order to push a “guilt-free” abortion agenda.

“If Plan B is taken five to two days before egg release is due to happen, the interference with the LH signal prevents a woman from releasing an egg, no fertilization happens, and no embryo is formed,” Dr. Donna Harrison of the American Association of Pro-Life Obstetricians and Gynecologists explains. In this case, Plan B would act as a contraceptive, not an abortifacient. However, if an emergency contraceptive is taken during the “two-day window in which embryos can form but positive pregnancy tests don’t occur,” studies show it “has a likely embryocidal effect in stopping pregnancy.” This is abortion.

If life begins at fertilization – and we strongly hold that it does – then any device or pill that would prevent the implantation of that fertilized egg is ending a viable human life and qualifies as an abortifacient. 

“Morning after” pills are not a casual solution to pregnancy or a morally acceptable answer to avoiding abortions – they are abortions. The pro-abortion movement is skillfully and subtly redefining what pregnancy, conception, and life have been understood to mean for decades, if not centuries. We must be on guard against this shift in terminology and refuse to cave to their language. Life begins at the moment of fertilization.

“And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” – John 8:32

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