There is an amendment to the Global Gag Rule before congress right now. The Gag Rule is where the United States has decided to withhold money from International organizations like The Red Cross if they fund contraceptives or reserve the right to say the word "abortion" to any of their patients.
Ever wonder how Africa developed such an extreme AIDS problem or why there are so many starving orphans in poverty stricken countries? Global Gag Rule.
It's hypocritical and undemocratic for the United States to make a moral judgement about abortion and contraceptives for every country on planet earth. Sounds more like a hegemony than a democracy to me. We end up paying for the Global Gag Rule through other funding, like feeding their orphans anyway, so it's really rather like shooting ourselves in the foot.
Plus, any and all global restrictions on any kind of contraceptive information is anti-girl and anti-woman. Because it's not abortions the U.S. is refusing to pay for it's reproductive information we are refusing to pay for. Where's the democratic ideal of freedom of speech in that? Hence the word Gag in the Rule.
Right now before congress there is an issue that gets all convoluted. It's an amendment to a foreign operations appropriation bill called the Stupak-Smith amendment. The issue has nothing to do with pro-choice or pro-life camps because abortion is not at stake - only contraceptives.
In America, whether you are pro-life or not you most likely appreciate your access to condoms and birth control pills. Especially, if you feel your family is perfectly complete as it is, but perhaps have 10 or 20 more childbearing years in you. Well, imagine you had no access to these simple contraceptives because you had no money or some foreign country, like the U.S., forbade the distribution of them. If I was that girl or woman I would wonder why the U.S. wanted to ruin my life by forcing me to have more children than I could afford to care for.
No matter what your stance on Row vs. Wade, surely you can see the difference between abortion and contraceptives. Globally, millions of girls and women are in a precariously unempowered position by being denied access to birth control.
You can participate in empowering girls and women all over the world by following this link to write your representative. The letter provided encourages law makers to ease the Global Gag Rule to allow the distribution of contraceptives by voting NO on the Stupak-Smith Foreign Ops Amendment.