The Quivering of Your Loins

We saw the movie “Juno” last night. Unfortunately, it’s one in a series of feel good films (see “Knocked Up”, “Saved!”) in which our key players fail to use any form of birth control, find out 2 months in they are pregnant, and then decide to have the child. I am not sure I understand it. A year ago a Times article pointed out, under the current policy, teen pregnancies between the ages of 15-19 rose 3%, the first such rise since 1991. Does this mean teenagers are unaware of contraception? Does an ‘abstinence only’ policy have anything to do with this rise? What does it mean that these films match the trend in the rise of teen pregnancy? An excerpt from the Guttmacher Institute shows that we are pitifully behind other industrialized nations, having both higher birth and abortion rates, than Sweden, France, Canada, and Great Britain.  We’re somewhere in the ballpark of Indonesia, South Africa, and Brazil.  And it doesn’t appear our situation is improving.  Surely, we can all agree that we want fewer abortions and fewer teenage pregnancies?  But sadly these past two terms have been ahistorical in nature.  And we do seem mired in it, with our inability to agree on things as a nation, we’ll just have to stick with Liberia and our “standard” units of measurement.