As we recently told you, the Air Force woke up from a spending binge with a bad hangover and no sign of the computer system they spent over a billion dollars on. Not to be outdone, the navy woke up with a bad hangover — and pregnant.
The Stars and Stripes tells the tale of woe and morning sickness:
Facing a staggering 74 percent unintended pregnancy rate, the Navy has launched a family planning awareness and information campaign.
We know what that means: they’ll have lots of mandatory death-by-powerpoint briefings, the Armed Forces network will put “don’t get knocked up” PSAs in the rotation with the usual “stop beating your wife” PSAs, and the problem won’t get any better.
Actually, maybe the public service announcements worked, and when sailors stopped beating their sailor wives, next thing you know….
The Navy’s peer-mentoring program Coalition of Sailors Against Destructive Decisions is holding informational sessions on family planning throughout January covering topics that include parental leave, operational deferment and the best forms of birth control.
Nearly three-fourths of all Navy pregnancies were unplanned, according to a recent parenthood survey conducted by the service. Of those, only 31 percent of the couples were using birth control at the time they conceived. With pregnancies involving enlisted servicewomen, 70 percent of the fathers were also in the military.
You might wonder why the Navy is so keen on pregnancy prevention. They’re not. This is a shot across the baby bump. as it were, for the next Administration initiative: abortion benefits for military servicewomen and wives (the NDAA authorizes abortion, but only for rape and incest cases. Extending this benefit to all servicewomen and all service spouses is a major DOD priority — much higher than, say, fighting the war). Let’s hear the next talking head tut-tut over the veritable monsoon of dropping infants:
“It is a very high number,” said Eleanor Schwarz, director of the Women’s Health Services Research Unit at the University of Pittsburgh. “It probably does point to a need to try to improve the situation.”
Of course, the “Women’s Health Services Reseatch Unit” promotes birth control and abortion. A couple months ago, Schwarz was promoting mandatory reporting of womens’ contraceptive decisions as a way to promote mandatory contraception counseling.
In the military, mandatory has another ring entirely.
As part of the awareness campaign, the Navy is highlighting the impact unplanned pregnancy can have on a servicemember’s career. A pregnant sailor can be disqualified from a sea duty position needed for career advancement. An unexpected spike in personal and financial responsibilities can also “jeopardize operational mission readiness,” and disrupt careers, according to the Navy news release on the awareness campaign.
Is there any way the Navy, or any service, could implement this without pressuring women on birth control, and, once the Administration has secured it as a benefit for the troops and their families, abortion?
As guys we’re neutral on the whole abortion thing, and we’re generally in favor of birth control. We just think the decision ought to be made by the woman, not her (or her husband’s) commanding officer.
And the idea that pregnant women are the Navy’s biggest problem… if anyone in the Navy spaces in the E Ring believes that, he’s gone full retard and needs to go to the one room on USS Boat where the Marines hold the key. Every single woman in the Navy could get knocked up tonight and take to her bed with complications tomorrow, and it wouldn’t hit the service as hard as budgetary reality is going to.
Yet they’re planning for Case A and not Case B.