We pick up the tab for other people’s ‘fun’

T. Gamble

T. Gamble

I’m increasingly amused by the newest arguments over contraceptives. As everyone knows, the president has ordered insurance companies must provide contraceptive coverage for anyone being insured by an employer.

Somehow, this particular order has now been construed as conservatives not in favor of contraceptives versus liberals who are in favor of contraceptives. As far as I can tell, I have not heard a single person who says they are not in favor of people using contraceptives. What I have heard, however, is some people feel it should not be their responsibility to pay for other people to have contraceptives, which is an entirely different subject.

Thinking about this subject, I first must determine why people use contraceptives. It seems the answer to this question is fairly simple. They do not wish to have children.

Now, there is only one way to become pregnant and that is by having sex. There are only two reasons to have sex. They either have sex to have children or they have sex for pleasure.

For purposes of this discussion, there is no need to discuss those who are having sex for children because they aren’t using contraceptives. That leaves us with only those people who have sex for fun.

Those having sex for fun believe I, as a taxpayer, should pay for their contraceptives while they’re having fun. Now, you may say the president has ordered the insurance companies to provide coverage so it is not the taxpayer who is paying. That would be incorrect because the insurance company will need to raise premiums on all insurance polices to cover the additional cost of adding contraceptives. So, I either pay a direct tax if the government makes me pay for contraceptives or I pay an indirect tax by paying more for my insurance.

My problem is why should I be paying for someone else to have fun? I am now 52 years old and have yet to have anyone ask if I would like to join in on the fun. I’m pretty sure even if asked, my wife would not allow me to consider such an offer.

I am still scratching my head trying to figure out why it is my responsibility — or anyone else’s — to provide contraceptives for someone who has decided to have fun. If I decide to have fun by going to Wild Adventures, I must have the money necessary to buy the ticket to enjoy the park. I don’t ask anyone else to pay for the ticket when I enter the park.

I decided to check to see if providing contraceptives is so expensive for the average person such that me or the government should be paying for this service. I surfed several Internet sites and found that one can purchase a 36-pack of condoms for $19.79. This 36 pack is what is known commonly as a lifetime supply of condoms for the average married couple.

Based on that price, it would cost $197.90 a year for someone to have risk-free sex 360 days of the year. I assume most people are not enjoying sex every day of the year and will decide to take at least five holidays during the year for a rest period. One hundred and 97 dollars and 90 cents a year is 54 cents a day. If you can’t afford 54 cents a day, you probably do not need to take a chance.

I’m pretty sure if it fails and you cannot afford to pay 54 cents a day, you will be asking me to pay for the baby once it’s born. Either way I’m on the hook for your fun and I still have not been invited to the party.

Have we as a country lost all sense of self responsibility?

I suspect one would be hard pressed to find anyone in the America who could not pay 54 cents a day to provide protection. If they could not come up with 54 cents, I’m willing to bet that a change in lifestyle could easily harness the additional 54 cents.

Think about it for a moment. Everyone has choices. You could forego your morning coffee and then have enough money to buy three days’ worth of protection. You could forego three cigarettes and have enough for a day’s protection. You could forego a few minutes on your cell phone and have enough money for a few days of protection. One could forego buying a lottery ticket, or new sneakers, or a hundred other items.

All I’m saying is this ridiculous argument that someone is against contraceptives is just that, ridiculous. What I’m against is being forced to pay for other people’s fun and other people’s decisions.

Contact columnist T. Gamble at t@colliergamble.com.


Abytaxpayer 3 years, 9 months ago

Side Note. Anyone can walk into the DoCo Health Dept and receive a little brown bag full of condoms for FREE so there is No excuse except lack of personal responsibility.


southwestga 3 years, 9 months ago

Actually, Santorum has declared himself against contraception - that it interferes with nature.


gsujd 3 years, 9 months ago

From the tone of your article, I suspect that it is intended to be humor. However, in case it is intended as a serious opinion, there are a couple of facts you should consider.

  1. People are going to have sex (for fun, as you say) whether or not they have contraception.

  2. Providing that contraception is much less expensive than providing care for the babies that will be born if the contraception is not available.

Rick Santorum (and the Catholic church) has declared himself to be against contraception, making these two points relevant.


waltspecht 3 years, 9 months ago

Personal Responsibility is the clue. Until folks accept that, and don't look to the Taxpayer to take up their slack, this Country is headed downhill. Who the heck oaid for contriception before the pill. Most Males wallets had a contraceptice device in them, because they didn't want to make a lifetime committement if they got lucky. Then there was the idea of Free Love, we're still paying for that. Society has come to accept too much it formally didn't accept. Some folks believe they should be able to have as many children as they want, and others should pay to raise them. Need I remind anyone about Octo-Mom?


TrixibelleBento 3 years, 9 months ago

I'm all for NO ONE having fun. That was a joke.

I would be even happier if we as taxpayers would fund sterilization to those who cannot deal with the consequences of fun.

Contraception has been readily available forever and there's no excuse why there's still so many illigitimate children.


tywebb 3 years, 9 months ago

one child out of wedlock = forced sterilization for mother and father


Outtahere 3 years, 9 months ago

That's harsh. Just one? Wow, that is soooo not right!!! I don't care if I have two babies out of wedlock, you can't FORCE sterilization on me!!!! To end this epidemic of babies having babies and expecting a free ride because of it will not happen because of forced sterilization. It could start by stricker guidelines on these programs. Instead of FORCING sterilization, just quit writing checks! There should be MUCH strickter guidelines and investigators making sure no one is commiting fraud. If they are, then prosecute and ensure that person never gets assistance again!


Engineer 3 years, 9 months ago

Now this is an interesting issue. If the author is strictly referring to condoms, then I would be inclined to agree with him, that the individual should pay for that on their own. However, in the case of birth control pills, it is a complicated issue. While yes, it is used as contraception, it also has legitimate medical uses. The most well known two uses are helping women control their cycle (for women having random periods) and the second major example, for women who suffer from recurrent ovarian cysts. Essentially in the second case, the birth control is used as a treatment to prevent the formation of these cysts. In the long term, it is cheaper to prevent the cysts, rather than allow them to form and have to be surgically removed or possibly become cancerous.
So the problem then becomes, do you want to stop a woman who needs access to the medication for legitimate medical reasons? Perhaps another way for social conservatives to look at this issue is that they shouldn't be looking at the pill as the cause of the immortality, but instead the immortality as the cause for the pill (in regards to contraception uses).


Outtahere 3 years, 9 months ago

Thank You!!!! This guy never even concidered those points!! What does he know anyway; contraception is for a woman (unless he is talking about condoms and I don't think he is)? He is the type of guy that complains about talking care of illegitimate kids AND about helping to prevent it. I would rather pay for contraception than for pre-natal care, the birth of a child, and pretty much taking care of it for years to come (including the mother)! But... I guess everyone is not as insightful as you!


agirl_25 3 years, 9 months ago

When we were stationed in Germany in the 60's one of the biggest immigration waves was because of the Wirtschaftswunder ("economic miracle") in that country and there was a shortage of laborers there so they had to import them. Many workers were allowed to immigrate from India and Pakistan. I read about a movement to try to curb population growth in those two countries and as an incentive the groups involved were offering free transistor radios to the men who volunteered to get a vasectomy. Many of the men from India and Pakistan came to Germany and I have never seen so many with transistor radios stuck to their heads. Do you think if we promised an APPLE I-pod and a 5-year subscription to one of the MP3 download markets we could encourage birth control here in the USA? Just a thought.


atina3438 3 years, 9 months ago

Yes, this country has lost its sense of responsibility - from the ground up!!


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