What Else Can We Cut Besides Cost …
Dr. J. Stephen Jones, “Why are we suddenly having an explosion in guys asking for vasectomies?” They looked at their statistics and realized the uptick started around November as the economic crisis deepened. October went down in the history books as one of Wall Street’s worst months. The Cleveland Clinic has seen a 50 percent increase in vasectomies, an outpatient surgery that is the cheapest form of permanent birth control. Vasectomies are less invasive and cheaper than tubal ligation, which involves blocking, tieing or cutting a woman’s fallopian tubes to prevent pregnancy.
Jones was told by patients that they were getting vasectomies because they were losing their jobs and health insurance, or concerned about being out of work soon.
“They realize they don’t have the financial security long-term with what’s going on,” Jones said. “Several of them have mentioned, ‘We can’t afford to have any more children in this economy.’ My perception is that it’s more of the concept of raising children in an uncertain economic future.”
Much like Jones, Dr. Marc Goldstein, surgeon-in-chief of male reproductive medicine and surgery at the Cornell Institute for Reproductive Medicine in New York, saw a 48 percent increase in vasectomy consultations compared with the same time last year.
“I have never seen anything like this,” said Goldstein, a urologist for the last 30 years. “When things started to go south in the stock market, then the vasectomy consults went north.”
Half of Goldstein’s New York patients work in the financial sector. New patients filed into his office in November.
“I think the situation of finance and the economy is the major reason,” Goldstein said. “Some of them have mentioned that, ‘It cost $30,000 a year to put my kids in private school and I can’t afford to have another one.’ It’s never the sole reason, but it’s certainly a contributing factor.”
During the vasectomy, the doctor cuts the two vas deferens, which are the tubes carrying sperm from the testicles to become semen. After the procedure, men can still have sex, but their semen does not contain sperm and therefore they can no longer father children.
“Some folks will postpone having kids,” he said. “If you had a vasectomy, you’ve made a bigger decision that you’re never going to have another child.”
When people stop having children, it implies a loss of confidence in their future employment prospects.
It’s too early to tell whether this recession has crimped the birth rate, Carl Haub, a demographer with the Population Reference Bureau, said.
At this point, most of the evidence of increased vasectomies has been anecdotal from practicing urologists, because there is no national registry for sterilizations.
This appears to be a most practical response to the economic downswing. With all the breaking news about fertility clinic extravaganzas, it appears that common sense is coming to at least a few people. The cost of having children is an important consideration for everyone. Beyond pure sexual pleasure, the consequences are seldom considered, life is actually created! Babies don’t just happen! Babies grow into children who must be financially supported through sickness and health and education. You are married to your children and responsible for them until they can support themselves. If you can’t support yourself, you can’t support anyone else. This is where responsibility for your actions becomes a critical part of your life. The passion of the moment has consequences. Responsibility does not impair pleasure, responsibility makes it more gratifying.
One has to wonder why a jobless, welfare recipient has the gall to artificially create eight more children. Then proudly announce she plans to support a total of fourteen children, with no resources except notoriety. If the Bush Administration can try to legislate morality, why can’t the Obama Administration legislate responsibility? Wow! You know the Republicans would label that as Socialism. Republicans, however, are quite willing to embrace Theocracy while engaging in their own sexual misconduct…
Chris Hedges (“Are We Breeding Ourselves to Extinction?“) and Betsy Hartmann (“Stop the Tired Overpopulation Hysteria“) reprise an argument that has raged for decades. Hedges identifies “overpopulation” as the root cause of climate change and other environmental problems and calls for “vigorous population control.” Hartmann dismisses population growth as a cause of environmental harm and reminds us of the shameful history of top-down population-control programs.