Blogging a Dead Horse

john blumenthal

john blumenthal
January 05
john_blumenthal (On Twitter)
Curmudgeon. Formidable braggart. Comedy writer. Eight books, 2 movies. Former associate editor at Playboy Magazine. Movies include "Short Time," (major flop), and "Blue Streak" (huge hit, no idea why.) Last three novels were "What's Wrong With Dorfman?" (St. Martin's Press), "Millard Fillmore, Mon Amour," (St. Martin's Press) and "Three and a Half Virgins" (Finalist, International Book Awards.) Latest book -- a spoof of romance novels called "Passing Wind of Love."


MARCH 27, 2012 11:22AM

Why Aren't Men More Outraged by the Oral Contraception Issue

Rate: 53 Flag

For those men who take for granted the concept of oral contraception, let's pretend that it's 1958 and there's no pill. What were your contraceptive options back then?


First, there was the prophylactic. A disease preventative, yes, but also an exasperating hassle.


Back in 1958, just buying a package of condoms was unpleasant because you first had to endure the disapproving scowls of practically everybody standing behind you in line, not to mention the lewd chuckles from the pharmacy clerk.


Then, when the time came for you to actually use the damn thing, you cursed the folks at Trojan because you had to spend 15 minutes fumbling in the dark to rip it out of its secure little tea bag package before the mood subsided or she fell asleep or, to paraphrase Groucho Marx, you were suddenly faced with the humiliating prospect of having to shoot pool with a rope.   



Then there were diaphragms, those little rubber thingies that kept slipping out of her hands like oily yarmulkes every three seconds while you quietly growled in frustration at the seemingly interminable delay.


For some guys, there was early withdrawal, which was not the kind you performed at a bank, and often didn't work anyway because your idea of early wasn't early enough.


Abstention? Forget it. Abstention is something Congressmen do when they don't know which way to vote. Or a method that the Palin family pretends to use.


There were gooey spermicides (which didn't really work) and the rhythm method (which didn't work either, even if you were a good dancer). 


IUDs, though invented in the 1920s, became an option, although they were so complicated, your lady love needed a degree in engineering and an owner's manual to figure out what went where.


If you used nothing, you had nine kids.


Abortion was not an option.


Sounds like the 15th Century, doesn't it? It wasn't. It was only 50-some years ago. In the late 1950s, nobody took the pill. By 1962, 1.2 million women were on it. In 1963, it was 2.3 million; by 1964, 25 percent of all couples in American used oral contraception. And the rest is history.


History, that for some perverse and incomprehensible reason, the Republican Party seems intent on reversing. Republican men in particular. And their wives are okay with this?




If I were Roy Blunt's wife, I'd make him sleep in the garage forever.


If I were Rick Santorum's wife, I'd lace his Viagra with arsenic.


If I were Rush Limbaugh's wife, I'd do something unspeakable to him and not in the good sense.


And when Rush calls Sandra Fluke a slut, isn't he really calling your womenfolk sluts too? Shouldn't you beat him up for that? What happened to chivalry?


On top of that, do you really want some repressed guy in a lab coat probing your lady's private parts for absolutely no good reason whatsoever?


So here's the question, guys: Why is this considered a "women's issue"? Sure, it's about privacy and self-determination and a woman's right to control her own body -- and all men should appreciate and respect that. But in a different and perhaps more superficial way, it's also about our bodies. Sex and spontaneity make excellent, ahem, bedfellows. Fatherhood is great but not if you don't want children.


Do you seriously want to go back to the Stone Age?


Not surprisingly, polls show that a huge majority of women are really really pissed off about this nonsense. Duh.


The question is, why aren't you?        




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Funny thing when it comes to contraception nobody mentions the invisible elephant in the bedroom. Not being snarky with GOP metaphors here, but when my wife's pap smears started going weird and her gynecologist advised she drop the pill, we had long soul searching talks about having a kid and in the end I took responsibility for my body - I got a vasectomy. My question is why has that option been conspicuously absent from damn near everything I've read about this phony election year bruhaha?
And where is Big Pharma? There's a lot of money in contraception. That's one reason I suspect this is more posturing than any move toward policy-making.
Point taken. No joke.

I've been so pissed for so long at the right's increasingly rabid reactionary positions that this seemed just one more item to add to the list. I guess I need a reminder that even in the midst of disasters during a typhoon, the tidal wave coming at you is more important than your flooded basement. [Warning: metaphors may be stretched beyond capacity.]

That said, having been conceived by a couple of college kids in the late '50s, I might not be here if oral contraception had arrived sooner. Timing is everything.
I live in Idaho and beyond lip service, chivalry is not the norm existent with Republican men. What I find astonishing is their thinking I'd ever date or have a relationship with anyone so willing to toss me under the bus.

Excellent post. Thank you for saying this.
I am pissed off. I find this ridiculous, offensive, oppressive, regressive - any nasty term you can think of. The right has lost their damn mind. They don't like the way things are today and want to take us back in history to where things were more to their liking. Good God.
Well, shortly after my daughter was born--even more of an "accident" than my son, I went and had a vasectomy. That was 28 years ago. I knew that was a better solution.
As for the rest of it--the real issue comes back to the governmental intrusion into what is totally none of government's business. The question of when a business can opt out of providing coverage for contraception is one which will eventually come before the courts because it is an interesting question of balancing privacy rights, the 1st amendment, the ability of business to conduct its own business and the rights of individuals who are employed by those businesses.
You've done it again,'s nice here in VA where our Govenor and AG are trying to run us pell mell back into the 19th century - a couple of good, Catholic boys who have sex whenever they want and let their wives carry the consequences. Womens' rights? Just what are those again?
It's not a women's issue, it's an issue between those who claim to be defenders of family values, while doing everything in their power to destroy families by electing corporatists and amateur theologists to government office -- between them, and those of us who wish we'd let the South secede when we had the chance.

As for Republican wives, they ought to take a clue from Lorena Bobbitt -- that's one sure method of birth control. Wonder what the Pope's position on that is? Hell, he shouldn't care, he's supposedly not using his appendage except to piss, and he could always sit down like a woman. Say, how about turning the Papal throne into a porty-potty?

Note: I suspect Rush's wife (as Whitey Shafer wrote: I love you little darlin' Number Four) would need a magnifying glass and tweezers.
I am none of the above's wives and I still want to castrate them all.
I am none of the above's wives and I still want to castrate them all.
I tried taking the condoms orally but they tasted awful. Then I had my wife swallow it (the condom you perverts) but then we had another kid. I came tot he conclusion that oral contraceptives were a failure. Fortunately, we are both old enough that we don't need the contraceptives anymore. To bad we are now to tired for sex.
Thanks, John. There are times when I wonder if the whole world's gone insane, then you write this. As the one in my family who took care of "things," the pill allowed Mr. Man to finish college and get a job before we multiplied. He is probably hoping Gingrich gets elected. Oh, there I go again.
Let's see . . . a standing cock has no conscience?

That's the best I could do. Anyway, thumbs up, new favorite!

Bravo! The day that we will really know that women are equal in this country is the day that everyone realizes that this is not just a women's issue. It is an issue for both men and women.

I said the very same thing to a certain former writer here on the day he posted something on this topic, and when he finally realized he was wrong, he deleted his post. That was right before he deleted his account.
Thank you for this, Blu.
You make a great points with a sense of humor.

But the Garage is TOO good for Blunt. It's too good for all the rest of those assholes, too. But I kind of want them to realize it on the wednesday after election day after experiencing the Electoral equivalent of World War III that female voters are more dangerous than the males.

but enthusiastically rated for being a guy with his head on straight.
Drugstore? didn't you guys have gas stations?
Hi Mr.Blumenthal,
It's always a pleasure to encounter your ideas, here they are not lopsided as they are mere opinions. It is one of the hardest arguments to have with a man, why? you might ask and you should. Because you of all people who have written amazingly clever and witty pieces on very serious submects, and this is as serious as it gets. Sex is serious business, but we in our enlightened sense of what is right by our standards of what is correct in todays society. People have forgotten about forget chivalry, forget about political correctedness, but do remember that it is a God given right to choose how and why we have sex in the first place.
I by no means are holier than thou, but I do know sex si a very precarious art, I say art because there are no end in the alibies that come out of pre-mature sex, fictionalized accounts of what went on, what could go on, what didn't go on, and yet we have many children in our realm with no fathers, or people that weren't planning to become parents, is now part of the preliminary equation. The sense of American and European sex ellicits the very young I mean 10 and then some age groups to consider sex with some very high authroity. Parent's try as they may to keep the subject at bay, know it's a matter of time before trying on condoms will be the least of thier worries. Then you have the flip side, those that are quite prudent over the idea of the school teaching children about sex, and adding in the condum. Then you have the after school set, which is the most precarious of the bunch if you ask me. Where does all of this get us? Love American Style, may have been a sit-com back in the day, but to think of people not seriously sitting down and biting down on the idea of how innocent mistakes create many other innocent mistakes as well. One of the saddest would be the girl who must consider giving her child up for adoption because her guy dosen't want to be a young father, and a millieou of other stories that focus on young teens that are becoming parents at a scarry rate. I beg that men must think this old fashioned stuff over once or twice, as to why? When the right answer comes about, then it will definitely be one of those "oh" moments.
I'd guess that Rush's wife has no problem at all. There's the pool boy, the chauffeur, the masseuse, the pizza man, the gardener, the........

I suspect that the last time Rush had an erection was when he spilled pepper in his lap and it sneezed.....!
Hilarious Statement of the Year: "Fatherhood is great but not if you don't want children." I love that you wrote this post, John. I remember how many guys, my husband included, took the responsibility to heart and had vasectomies. I called that pure love.

a very good question, indeed
Who is taking away birth control? This is a silly premise fabricated to create an issue long ago resolved. So Santorum does not believe in BC. SO !!!!
Never heard Rush or Hannitty speak out against it. I do not know anyone who is adamant about forcing people to stop using BC.
Target sells them for 9 bucks a cycle without insurance, you want sex , put down the Latte twice a week and you can bang away. Fluke's premise was a joke and we still do not know how she got in front of congress yet Nora Dunn (Obama connection) is now representing her.
Most Conservatives I know advocate liberals use as much BC as possible !!!!:->
Women should be outraged, and their menfolk as well. These Neanderthals are obnoxious, hypocritical and dangerous throwbacks.

But all due respect, John, all of what you say is why I had a vastectomy before I was 30. I've never once regretted it, if only because it put the onus for birth control squarely where it belonged: On me.
Yes, more that half of "religious" Americans either believe--or pretend to believe--in an Inquisition ideology. Looking at the laws they are proposing and what a woman has to do before she gets an abortion, I am waiting for a law that says "a woman must experience an anal red hot iron rod before an abortion."

I think the rest of us are outraged, but most are confused; as in, "I can't believe this sh*t." Hilarious, blu. R
it's outrageous, sure, this 'fundamentalist' attempt to return us
to the 50's & even further back.

i am still naive politically enough to feel that it will fade away,
this awkward attempt by these nutballs to
turn back time.

What i find odd is how our fundamentalist fellow citizens
share so many qualities with our supposed ENEMY,
the muslim fundamentalists...
they hate our freedom,
said GWB.

So we have devolved into a society that reverses
women's, and you goddamn right, men's...freedom.....

odd how history works its ways..............................
Excellent post, John. I've been wondering the same thing.
Yes, exactly! The exact title of your post has been on my mind for weeks! Why aren't more men upset about this - It takes two, and for my money, both men and women should be screaming mad. And yet, all I heard was Rush calling that brave woman a skank.

Glad to hear somebody else out there is wondering the same thing!
It would be interesting to see some polling---because you ask a really good question.

Maybe it's a couple reasons. First, the assault on the vulnerable is so overwhelming, that outrage gets buried.

And maybe its that part of this assault's goal is to divide us so that we lose any sense of connection to each other.

Because you are of course right---this is everyone's problem.
Of course, condoms were a hassle...but so was doing it in a 61 Sunbeam Alpine roadster. Ah, but it was worth the effort. ( I am not sure she had sex with me or the gear shift lever) R
Personally, to answer your question, I think men still see pregnancy as a woman's problem. What else could it be? There are way more single Mom's these days. Deadbeat Dad's abound. The comment sections in my local papers are adamant that if I get pregnant it's my own darn fault, not theirs. Conservative men want the power and making women be scared of sex is a way that they do it.
Great piece. I actually wrote about this, and including an invitation to use colored condoms, for MinnPost (online news source here in Minneapolis/St. Paul). Why aren't more men concerned? Why indeed. You bring up great points.
It's about time someone asked that question besides me.
Loved the Groucho line blu. It's similar to that "pushing a string" expression. Anyway, you've made an excellent point humorously. Kudos.
My husband is outraged. When we (well...he...because I would have rallied for a third kid) decided we were done, he signed up very happily for a vasectomy.

My dad had a vasectomy (and I have vivid memories of the event -- he got drunk on Strawberry Hill and passed out in my Nannie's bathroom). Among my group of girlfriends, the majority of spouses have been snipped because we understand that that within a healthy adult relationship, partners want to have sex without producing a soul-sucking, finance-sucking, bodily-fluid sucking infant EVERY TIME. And a loving male partner, upon witnessing his female partner breathe -- hoo-hoo-hoo and push-push-push -- realizes it's his turn to sit on a bag of ice for a couple of days.

There's no way I would look twice at a man who thought birth control was "women's business."
Thank you, thank you for this. Just the right humor. And the right message.
This is a very thoughtful and well-written piece.
This is a very thoughtful and well-written piece.
Once upon a time there was a brain scan study which concluded that when men viewed pictures of beautiful women, the part of the brain which lit up was that of "tool use". What? Men objectifying women? Say it aint so!
But seriously, for many men, and in some situations, women -such as myself - are guilty of this as well. We see a someone who can be "useful" to us (a handyman? A sugardaddy? A blowjob in the back alley?) and we think "how much trouble is this going to be for me to get what I want?" If the person in your life has a "purpose" by which you measure their value, they are not a person--they are a tool.
Good post. And it's good to see all the male comments here.
I've read this several times. Very very funny.
The thought of me being a Dad at 15 scared me enough but I don't think I ever thought about it back then. My Redhead wife always used......NO! She scares me too. Politicians fuck themselves, who cares.......o/e
Well said, John! I think there are a lot of men who are outraged. Maybe they're just standing back because the ladies are doing such a good job here.
So where's O'Really? when we need her?
Great post John. Thanks for this. I guess there is one advantage to being 62!
O'Really married a penguin named Steve. They live in Boca Raton.
they should be.

excellent piece, john b.
Just thinking of Rush Limbaugh having sex works better than condoms or any other methods of birth control.
I just can't figure it out...

The self same men who are dead set against straight women having the pill are dead set against the mere idea of a couple of lesbians having children.

I guess they are just confused, huh?
Who are the guys against women having the pill.
If conservatives are racists,don't want to pay their fare share and do not want abortions then show me a few that are trying to stop BC.
Tilting at windmills.
Sign me up! I can multitask, too. I'll join the committee to peck Limpbaugh to within an inch of his...wait, that's all he's got! I'll join other committees, too. I can become joiner for this issue.
Thank you! My husband and sons are totally pissed off about this, too, because it insults my daughter and I and every other woman! Why are conservative men so hung up on the virgin/whore model of women? As if there are no in-betweens? How do they think they were conceived? Do they believe the stork brought them, or maybe they were found under the cabbage patch? They need to get their heads out of their *sses, and the women who vote for them do, too! R
Excellent piece, John, and certainly a sentiment I agree with. However, the quip, " shooting pool with a rope," came from George Burns at age 90, not Groucho. The full quote is, "Sex at my age is like shooting pool with a rope."
What is absolutely galling is this utterly inane thread of attack from the rigorously self-righteous religious right, who attempt to smoke screen the issue of Freedom with -- somehow -- the true expression of religion. (Now, I know the Repubs rivaled Chris Angel with their disappearing of act of how Healthcare reform will ruin our society;
but this tidy tune of falling into bed with Santorum's backers, with these evangelicals, et al, lying there spread out like some awful B movie on very late Friday night's, with the plot points wrapping freedom of religion, its expression and how ObamaScare will uproot your last bit of freedom, is the most ridiculous notion this country has ever experienced.) The Big Church is now campaigning, blindly, for whichever Republican is eager -- and stupid enough -- to wrap themselves in our flag, and while this fandango would take the athletic skills of Michael Jordan, to also find the gold & white flag of Rome itself, wrapping this neatly about themselves like a noble Roman would, to embolden the masses to refute this corruption of our freedom being scuttled away. Do these people have any connection with our Earthly reality? Or has Newt offered them Frequent Flyer Mileage double points to go to Mars?
Contraception? Where is that in their Constitution?
@Jeff: I bow to your expertise, but there seems to be some confusion on the Net about the origin of that quote.
How is opposing the requirement that insurance pay for contraception deductible free tantamount to wanting to ban contraception?

Why not go back to the way it was way back in 2011? Contraceptive coverage not being a government mandate, and it being legal and fairly cheap.

Besides the nutcase Santorum, nobody (not even the Catholic Bishops) is suggesting that contraception should be banned.
Agree with all the comments here and great post john.

I think these guys Santorum and others think birth control pills are akin to Viagra. The women who take them everyday are therefore sluts. That is how dumb they are... i think i thought this myself but Bill Maher had a great riff on this too. R
Keep your dress down and your panties up!
nice, laughed throughout...did anyone ever really use the word "prophylactic"?? ...I never regret stopping by ~
Great piece, Blu!
As for the people who claim nobody wants to ban birth control...The Arizona legislature just passed a law stating life begins two weeks BEFORE conception. The intention is to make any form of birth control illegal. Guess a whole lot of right wing religious zealots will need to resort to their own hand! A huge thanks to all the men who can see the absurdity in this! (Even if you just do it to get laid!)
Yes indeed, the current abstinence crusade is not only bizarre, it's also entirely sexist since its proponents apparently have no problem whatsoever with Viagra and, as jmac1949 points out, vasectomies. This shows that it has nothing whatsoever to do with "morality," au contraire! And as women are forced to put up with endless hassle, men will likely continue to seek and find what they're looking for elsewhere.

As for that rope and pool remark - I'll never get that one out of my head from now on...

With women on the job, males are redundant. The question is whether those women will vote, and in what numbers. I made up my mind a long time ago, but this isn't the only issue that led to my decision. For this to be the ONLY issue of concern makes me wonder just how gullible the middle class is--male and female.
I'm afraid the answer to your question is simply "Because men don't get pregnant and they are not often treated as second class citizens either." Thanks for asking, though.