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April 23rd, 2009
06:00 PM ET

Should 17-year-olds get "morning-after" pill without prescription?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

17-year-old girls will soon be able to buy the so-called morning-after pill without a doctor's prescription - and for that matter without their parents' knowledge or permission. The emergency contraceptive is currently available to women 18 and older, but the FDA says it will soon be available to 17-year-olds as well.

Plan B, also called the morning-after pill, is intended to prevent pregnancy after unprotected sex.

The agency decided to accept a recent ruling from a federal judge that lifts Bush-era restrictions limiting over-the-counter sales of Plan B to women. The judge also directed the FDA to determine whether all age restrictions should be lifted.

Plan B - or the morning after pill - is emergency contraception that contains a high dose of birth control drugs. It's a series of two pills; and if taken within 72 hours of unprotected sex, can reduce the chances of a pregnancy by almost 90 percent.

Women's groups say the decision is long overdue; and "a strong statement to American women that their health comes before politics." Supporters also say the pill is safe and effective and could help reduce the number of abortions and unwanted pregnancies.

But critics - many of them conservatives - say parents should be furious at this decision as it steps on their rights. Some also say the drug - which they liken to an abortion pill - will encourage promiscuity.

The debate over the morning-after pill has been going on for years. Critics of the FDA say the agency has refused to listen to scientists who have recommended that the drug be made available with no restrictions.

Here's my question to you: Should 17-year-olds be able to get the "morning-after" pill without a doctor's prescription?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Gregory from Washington writes:
Yep. The morning-after pill is a next-best-thing kind of contraception, and regardless of what religious types might tell you, the science of the matter is that conception and implantation has not yet occurred by the time the morning after rolls around. Equating OTC morning-after pills with drive-through abortions, as detractors are bound to do, is just plain incorrect.

Saddened reader from New Jersey writes:
Yes! It's better not to have a pregnant 17-year-old who isn't able to care for a child resulting from an unplanned pregnancy. We can't stop 17-year olds from having sex, but hopefully if they don't become pregnant, they'll stay in school and become contributing members of society, rather than unwed mothers living on welfare.

Mike writes:
Absolutely not! Conservatives are right; I am outraged at this as a parent! What's next? This is going to make it easier for kids to sneak and hide the things they are doing wrong. Maybe we should take away accountability all together and just load our kids’ book bags up with condoms and KY jelly… What a liberal joke and mockery of morality! This country's decision makers concern me.

Jill writes:
Yes! As a current high school teacher, I'm here to tell you that 17 year-olds are having sex, regardless of what their parents want to believe. Unfortunately, I have seen many promising students, male and female, lives' derailed by accidental pregnancies… Making this available only acknowledges a reality that teens are faced on a daily basis.

H. from Arizona writes:
Absolutely not. Where are the parents? This country has become nothing more than a sex-driven, drug-driven society. Where are the morals?

Tom from Texas writes:
My great-great-grandmother gave birth out of wedlock at age 17 in 1866. She may have liked the option rather than telling her German-born parents. That must have been an interesting discussion.


Filed under: Health • Health care
soundoff (233 Responses)
  1. Eddie in NC.

    like most of the questions polled we are going to be split, so consider this, no matter how we feel about this issue if a person makes one mistake there is no reason that we(society) should force them into another one so we can stick out our chest of holy-than -thoughness to make ourselfs feel good, while disregarding the welfare of "TWO" children.

    April 23, 2009 at 1:19 pm |
  2. Pam from Kansas City

    Jack, I think all parents cringe at the thought that their 17 year old daughter might be having sex without them knowing. But the truth is, it's happening. And unless we want an overpopulated U.S. and/or overpopulated jails from more Casey Anthony's who don't want to be moms, I do think it's necessary for the "morning after" pill to be readily available. ESPECIALLY for those 17 year olds who have conservative parents that will pressure them into keeping the baby if they do get pregnant. Plan B does not promote or encourage promiscuity any more than condoms do. It's the way you raise your children that matters people!

    April 23, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  3. Aaron D.

    I don't think that children should have the access to the drug because we would be sending out a message "OK now just in case you mess up you can fix it and do it again." We should learn from our mistakes and there should be a consequence for bad decisions that they make. It also makes it easer to hide what they have done. This no consequence response is the wrong message for kids!

    April 23, 2009 at 6:00 pm |
  4. Theresa in Atlanta

    If they're engaging in sex and are old enough to have a baby, then yes they should be able to control their own reproduction.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:00 pm |
  5. Erin in Texas

    I would rather see a seventeen-year-old girl take a pill that does nothing but induce menstruation than see her in an abortion clinic three months later. Seems to save time and grief all around, no?

    April 23, 2009 at 6:02 pm |
  6. john christopher - saskatchewan

    Pills...the little expensive gems separated from illegal drugs by a thin law and lobbyists. Pills never solve the problem, they mask the symptoms. Giving a morning after pill to a 17-year-old does not solve the problem. They better have more of a plan than that – like communicating with your children. Been there done that and now I'm formulating a plan for myself in that I will only take an alzheimer's pill if I need to remember what the hell that viagra tablet is for.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:04 pm |
  7. Karen - Missouri

    Simply put...yes

    April 23, 2009 at 6:04 pm |
  8. Jackie

    17 year olds should absolutely be able to get the morning after pill without a prescription. At 17, many girls are sexually active and mistakes do happen. This, like other contraceptives should be readily available. It will not promote careless sexual behavior, and in fact may lead to a decrease in teen pregnancies. Which would you rather see, teens with options or more unplanned teen pregnancies?

    Dallas, TX

    April 23, 2009 at 6:04 pm |
  9. israel biniam

    HMM Parents should be furious at the FDA's complete disregard of parental rights and the safety of minors, WHY? Now the minors will think yes we can have sex with out condom hoping that they will not get pregnant If taken within 72 hours of unprotected sex, it can reduce a woman's chances of pregnancy by as much as 89 percent o ya mark my work the HIV will be high in this country is they don’t take care of this. Do the FDA’s Law makers do they have children?

    April 23, 2009 at 6:05 pm |
  10. Rachel McConnell

    I think the most appropriate question should be, "Would you rather your seventeen-year-old daughter be pregnant?" Unfortunately, most seventeen-year-old girls wouldn't even know such a pill is available for them to use and use safely. Most people opposed to this fundamental civil right don't understand human anatomy/physiology, let alone respect women's rights in any capacity.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:06 pm |
  11. Frances Kelly

    Yes, of course - why is it only the girls who have to justify their sexual activities?

    AND, more to the point, it is George BUSH who should be prosecuted for the torture allowed under his presidency, not the people following orders.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:06 pm |
  12. Happy in Arizona

    Absolutely not. Where are the parents with their girls. This country has become nothing more than a sex driven, drug driven society. Where are the morals. Same for same sex marriage. This is not normal, not right. All I can say is we are living in a sick society

    April 23, 2009 at 6:07 pm |
  13. Christina

    Yes! The morning after pill is a form of birth control – It is a contraceptive, not an abortion medication. By making it readily available to more women, unwanted pregnancies and abortions can be reduced. It is ridiculous to call this an abortion pill when it can actually lower the number of abortions performed. 17 year old girls are mature enough to make decisions about their own bodies.

    Christina, NY

    April 23, 2009 at 6:09 pm |
  14. Pam

    Yes. I'm the mother of a 16-year-old girl and hope my daughter would discuss this with me before she felt the need to use it. But I don't want her possible discomfort to interfere with her access to this pill. So yes, 17-year-olds should get access.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:10 pm |
  15. Grit

    Yes. Yes. Yes. As a former 17 year old girl who was pregnant and had no idea until I miscarried, yes, yes, yes 17 year old's should have access to the morning after pill. Without question.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:10 pm |
  16. Duffy Ideal Ga

    Jack....They have the right at 17 to choose to have Sex , so they should have that right too. The parents seem to FORGET how their hormones were raging at that age. Abstinence? OH PLEASE!

    April 23, 2009 at 6:10 pm |
  17. Mark in NY

    Jack, I have two words for you..."Bristol" and "Palin".

    April 23, 2009 at 6:10 pm |
  18. Jennie From Cali

    I completely agree that 17 years should have that available to them. I also believe that minors should be able to have an abortion without parents consent. If we had to have parents consent, that is when teenagers would have back alley abortions and such. Girls and women should have the right to choose.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:10 pm |
  19. Lilarose in Bandon, Oregon

    Absolutely! In fact, any female who is menstruating and able to request these pills should be able to get them on demand.

    My gr-gr-gr grandmother had three kids by the time she was age 17. Did she have to ask her parents? And she was no different than many of her friends in those days. Early marriage, many babies.

    I am sure she would have had fewer kids if she could.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:10 pm |
  20. Ken in NC

    Only if not listening to mom the night before about dad.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:11 pm |
  21. Colleen Hespeler

    I believe that 17 year olds should have access to the morning after pill. It is not an issue of politics or religious views, but of women's health. 17 year olds are having sex, whether people like it or not, and should be allowed access to the same contraception that older women are.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:11 pm |
  22. Knows Enuff

    Yes and it's about time!

    April 23, 2009 at 6:11 pm |
  23. Connie

    If they told the truth and Casey Anthony had used the morning after pill and her mother knew she was pregnant and wouldn't let her get an abortion another baby (Caley) would not have gone through what she did. Girls are out making it with guys by age 12.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:11 pm |
  24. JC Weinberg

    Technically, Teens have been sexually active for thousands of years. You can't change that, but you can make it safer. By 17, I'd say, parents don't have the say to stop that kind of thing. What they should be doing in encouraging less drastic measures when it comes to preventing teen pregnancy. You know, like having safe sex to begin with.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:11 pm |
  25. patrick

    yes jack, the should be able to get the pill otherwise more americans will end up like bristol palin and her boy friend.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:11 pm |
  26. Shirley Mesquite

    Yes because they are having sex without their parents permission or a doctors prescription.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:11 pm |
  27. Willie From Weston, Florida

    Jack,

    Travesty I tell ya, Travesty!!! I am a democrat with a 15 year old daughter and I NEED TO KNOW WHAT SHE'S DURING THIS AGE PERIOD ALL THE TIME. I cannot and will not accept government backed regulations, laws and policies that essentially strip my parental prerogative to ensure I know where my child stands in all aspects of life. The morning after pill erases not only pregnancies, but to a large degree, it hides the guilt and moral failure that accompanies the individual as well. That's TOO much power for a 17 year old.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:11 pm |
  28. Melinda Lee

    YES YES YES!!!

    April 23, 2009 at 6:11 pm |
  29. John, Fort Collins, CO

    Pencils come with erasers; women should have the same opportunity if the feel they may have made a mistake. I don't see where age is a factor here; any woman old enough to have consensual sex is old enough to make that decision. For what it's worth a feeble opinion from a man who would never have to pay the same price as the potential mother.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:11 pm |
  30. Skywalker Payne, R.N.

    I worked in a Women's Clinic on the Navajo Reservation and gave many young women this birth control pill. Some had sex because they were drunk, some were taking birth control pills and missed a day, some were having sex and the condom broke. Many were under 17. In Arizona youth were able to access birth control, by law, without their parent's knowledge. However, they could not get an abortion. Yes, this pill should be available. Parents do not have control of their children once they begin having sex. If the child has the tools to prevent unwanted births they should be allowed to use them.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:12 pm |
  31. Scott

    I think this is a perfect thing to be available to all women under the age of 18 that are having sex. It's not just to say "Hey, don't worry, we can have sex. I'll just take the pill after." it's to provide that added protection that women, and also men would like. It would be great for those that are having sex using a condom. The condom can break. If it breaks the woman can take the pill and hopefully not have to worry. It's not just immature 17 year olds having unprotected sex that would be using this pill, it is also mature responsible 17 year olds that will use it.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:12 pm |
  32. CRISTINA

    Yes, and here is why: Laura and G.W. Bush were very surprised last year aftre hearing a report that their abstinence policies did not work, and that in fact the number of teenage pregancies have increased... These kids will have sex no matter what, so let them take the pills, heck... give them condoms and whatever they need, and maybe they will stay in school longer. Number of unwanted pregnancies will decrease, for sure. Thanks for bringing this up, Jack.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:12 pm |
  33. Elizabeth

    It's EMERGENCY contraception. What if a 17 year old is raped by her (step) father? Do these morons really think she'll ask her mother for permission to get Plan B?

    April 23, 2009 at 6:12 pm |
  34. Emmanuel Ogamdi Boca raton fl

    yes they should, sometimes girls make mistakes, and they should have a way out.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:12 pm |
  35. Matthew b

    Jack this has become a moral argument. Plan B is not the morning after pill and will not termintate a fetus. This is about women's privacy and safety. If conservitaves really want governent out of there lives why is this situation different?

    April 23, 2009 at 6:12 pm |
  36. Donna from Kansas

    Yes, this would cut down on abortions. Listen, these girls are having sex without their parents permission(I hope) so let them make the decision whether or not them are ready for a baby.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:12 pm |
  37. gwen caranchini

    Any parent who opposes the morning after pill on the grounds it interferes with their ability to "parent" their 17 year olds sex lives need look no further than Palin's daughter. Assuming that Palin did everything she could to parent her daughter to avoid premarital unprotected sex–it didn't get her very far. Her daughter followed in her mother's footsteps and had premarital unprotected sex which led to a child. IN Palin's case it was preceded by marriage; thank god the young man recognized shot gun weddings do nothing to promote good marriages.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:12 pm |
  38. Staks

    Should 17 year olds be allowed to buy condoms? What's the difference?
    -Staks
    DangerousTalk.net

    April 23, 2009 at 6:12 pm |
  39. Nick Roloson

    Of course we should allow it. This is a matter of principle. We live in a society of free choices and we emphasize the importance of responsibility when making those choices. There is no reason that a woman shouldn't be able to buy a drug that is beneficial to her health. As for the argument that we would be encouraging promisscuity; we already allow people of any age to buy a variety of drugs like cough suppressants over the counter that can be easily abused, should we ban those too?

    April 23, 2009 at 6:12 pm |
  40. Tenera - Florida

    We first need to talk to our young ladies and explain the importance of protecting themselves by using condoms, but if there is a situation where they think they may become pregnant than I see how this would be a good idea. I just hope that they do not use this as a birth control method on a regular basis.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:12 pm |
  41. Roya

    Jack,
    Absolutely. No matter what people believe, this issue comes down to cold hard cash. Us taxpayers have to help these young mothers support their babies if they don't have grandma's support. Having children without being able to support them with a good education and a JOB hurts more than just that child.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:12 pm |
  42. Jemmo

    Yes they should, they should actually drop the age limit down to 16. Let's be candor we all know they are sexually active; better to be proactive than reactive!!!!

    April 23, 2009 at 6:12 pm |
  43. Richard

    17 year olds should be able to get Plan B without parental consent as long as they can have sex without parental consent.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:12 pm |
  44. Derrel

    I can live without the prescriptions but without parent knowledge or permission? I understand that mistakes are made, but removing doctors AND parents from the equation pretty much takes out all accountability and responsibility for the actions of the kids.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:12 pm |
  45. Mike (in Sweden)

    Absolutely they should be able to buy the morning after pill without restriction. Moreover sexual education programs need to be beefed up to make sure that young people know that this is an option.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  46. Rick in BC, Canada

    Yes, Yes, Yes. My girlfriend and I were able to get this pill at our pharmacy with no prescription, after we discovered that my condom had broken during our previous night of love making. I guess we would have had to just cross our fingers if we did not have access to this pill. It should be available to everyone – no prescription.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  47. LOBO LOPEZ

    Absolutely. Unwanted pregnancies destroy young people's lives. Of course, parents should advise their children to abstain from sex, but many kids don't listen.... and for them the pill will save them the need for an abortion.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  48. Kathy O

    This pill is NOT an abortion pill. In fact, if the woman is already pregnant from a previous encounter and does not realize it, this pill will NOT disrupt that pregnancy. This pill is to PREVENT a pregnancy, not abort one. If Prolife advocates are really committed to reducing abortions, they should be jumping for joy today.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  49. Emily-worcester ma

    Yes. Example: Bristol Palin needed it!

    April 23, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  50. Joe

    Yes Jack, 110% they should. As a high school senior now I hear about unprotected sex all the time and you wouldn't believe some of the stories. Many kids are not concerned enough to find another way to get the pill (ie parents, friends) and decide to wait it out instead. If its readily available, it will be used. There increase in unprotected sex because of it will be minimal compared to the decrease of abortions and unwanted pregnancies.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  51. Ryan

    Jack,
    They absolutely should be able to get Plan B without a doctor's prescription. If two teens make an irresponsible choice by having unprotected sex, they should have the ability to make the responsible choice to rectify that situation discretely.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  52. Kevin D

    Yes, it should become available for 17 Y.O. without perscription. This will decrease unwanted pregnancies and will help young women to focus on creating a carreer.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  53. jack C

    Every state has varying ages of consent. If a state has an age of consent of 18, but allows a 17yr old to purchase plan B, then what exactly is the message here. Leave it up to the states

    April 23, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  54. Martha Montgomery

    Parents need not worry about loosing their "right" to control their teenage daughter's health choices. Thanks to the abstince-only sex sex education programs endorsed by the Bush administration over nearly a decade, most of these young women probably don't even know where babies really come from.
    -Martha in Pembroke Pines FL

    April 23, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  55. Tom

    Jack, if a child under 18 is irresponsible enough to get him or herself into sexual intercourse on their own, then they should be allowed a chance to be responsible enough to get themselves out!

    April 23, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  56. Tony, from Minnesota

    17-year-old girls should certainly be allowed (in law) to purchase such contraceptives. The social and financial repercussions unwanted pregnancies cause are often calamitous, and the moronic objections of the radically religious shouldn't be taken seriously. There are no real medical reasons to restrict the sale of these drugs, and most opposition to their distribution stems from illogical, irrelevant beliefs.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  57. Terik Ororke

    When are we as Americans going to admit that boys and girls as young as 13 are having sex? So then, what is to be done? Is a simple pill the answer–I think not. We indeed have a greater problem than American parents and the country simply chooses to ignore.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  58. Megan S

    All age restrictions on Plan B should be lifted. The availability of this drug will have no effect on promiscuity – teens will be teens. Anything that can lower the number of unwanted pregnancies is not only good for the parents, but good for the country in that we won't have to take care of the babies with our tax dollars. Limiting access to drugs like these will not help lower the number of unwanted pregnancies or abortions.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  59. Denise

    Of course they should. No matter what protection is used, accidents happen. Girls now days at 17 are far more sophisticated than their parents were. Let them make the choice about their future.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  60. Audrey Browne

    Yes!! Yes! Yes! This pill is long over due. The good that can come from the use of fhis drug in the light of a unwanted pregnancy is astronomical. I do not believe as a parent that I should be able to stand in the way of my daughters using this protection. I believe they should have a right to choose. If parents think that preaching abstinence is going to protect their child from pregnancy they are sadly mistaken.

    Audrey
    Myrtle Beach, SC

    April 23, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  61. Mike from Chicago

    Contraception does not encourage promiscuity. Being a 17-year-old encourages promiscuity. We need to stop imposing legislated morality on our kids and instead equip them with the information and the power to deal with the consequences of their bad decisions in safe and mature ways.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  62. Sarah Keith

    Absolutely, women and girls should be able to get the morning after pill!!!!! I am a 65 year old woman who remembers illegal abortions and parents today should talk about sex with their children not just say "abstain". Children will have sex and should not have to bear the burden of motherhood before they reach the age of consent.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  63. Surer Mohamed

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but the Morning After Pill is used AFTER unprotected sex, right? If that is so, the decision has already been made. If the pill is safe, and it should be because the FDA is approving it, then they should allow this decision to go through. The pill PREVENTS pregnancies, therefore it is totally different from an abortion.

    Surer Mohamed,
    London, Ontario, Canada

    April 23, 2009 at 6:14 pm |
  64. Andy Scott

    I do believe this pill should be available to all without any restrictions.

    At any age, a women old enough to have a sexual relationship should be allowed to make her own choice if she wants to take the morning after pill.

    Andy

    April 23, 2009 at 6:14 pm |
  65. Tina

    We seem to think it is OK to send 18 year olds into the most dangerous military situations, around the world...and we think they are old enough to make some very serious decisions...with weapons.

    Why would we not give 17 year old young women the right to avoid bringing unwanted children into their lives. This is a personal decision and not the decision of their parents'. More children need to be wanted and loved and more young women need to have their decisions respected.

    The educational challenge is one of promoting birth control. Birth control needs to be widely available, easily obtained, and accompanied by a public education campaign directed to both young men and young women.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:14 pm |
  66. zumacrume

    Plan B should be available to all women without a prescription. Mandatory parental notification has increased the amount of unwanted pregnancies, and studies have shown that children produced from unwanted pregnancies perform poor in school and have unhealthy social and romantic relationships as they age. Availability of this medicine will be able to help those women who need it and avoid unwanted pregnancies.
    ~Nick, Long Island

    April 23, 2009 at 6:14 pm |
  67. Kathleen Richardson

    Dear Jack: Here's my question: If a minor girl experiences adverse side effects from this powerful form of "birth control," who is responsible for the consequences – the drug store or the girl's parents?

    April 23, 2009 at 6:14 pm |
  68. Duffy Ideal Ga

    Jack hope they come out with a pill that prevents AIDS too. The Morning after is too late to use PROTECTION!

    April 23, 2009 at 6:14 pm |
  69. ik mohammed

    i do not think that morning after pill should be made available without a doctors prescription because these individuals will easily be missed to follow up for routine checks importantly pap smears , std checks etc. The consequence of these will be more stds, and possibly cervical cancers.

    isa, canada

    April 23, 2009 at 6:14 pm |
  70. Sue Walters

    Does this mean parents WON'T be responsible for any medical or psychiatric expenses that could follow the giving of this drug to a minor? Why not just give the state financial responsibility for teenagers, if this is such a hot idea.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:14 pm |
  71. Willie From Weston, Florida

    Jack,

    Instead of the "MORNING AFTER" Pill, we need a "The Morning Before" Pill that helps avoid the morning after! If you are 17 and reading this...PLEASE talk to your parent first about anything and everything you do...this is not a cure for bad behavior!

    April 23, 2009 at 6:14 pm |
  72. charles igou

    yes 17 year old girls and Younger should be provided the pill if there is a chance of the young girl becoming pregnant due to un-safe sex. It is better to be safe than sorry [for ever.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:14 pm |
  73. Frank P.

    I believe seventeen year-olds should be able to get the morning after pill without a perscription. If they are mature enough to have sex and get pregnant they are obviously making their own decicions. Many people say that their parents should be informed if they are going to take the pill, but their parents should have played a bigger role in their life to trying to prevent their unwanted pregnancy like maybe playing a bigger role in their child's life.

    Frank of West Palm Beach

    April 23, 2009 at 6:14 pm |
  74. Pat Bluhm

    Definitely yes.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:14 pm |
  75. Cindy

    Without a doctor's prescription? Absolutely not. To do so would represent a huge step backward in the care of women. Any patient, minors included, can have medical issues that could be exacerbated by a particular medication, including this pill. Do we actually have to lose young lives before we see this as being more important than easy access to the drug? I won't even start on my rant about how this cuts parents out of the loop. Let's just focus on the medical issue, and all reasonable people, regardless of religious, ethical, or political beliefs, should be able to agree.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:14 pm |
  76. Chi-chi

    No. There are no studies showing the future harmful effects these pills can can on a female's body. Moreover, at age 17, a girl is not mature enough to understand the seriousness behind taking a pill as strong as the morning after-pill. This ruling will do nothing more but increase sexual encounters amongst under-aged females and continue misuse ofover the counter prescription drugs.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:15 pm |
  77. Natalie

    Yes, even though they do not need their parents permission, at least they are trying to protect themselves. Some are afraid to go to their parents and tell them that they are being sexually active. They should not be having sex at 17, but if they are, at least they are doing it in a safely manner.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:15 pm |
  78. Derrel

    I can live without the prescriptions but without parent knowledge or permission? I understand that mistakes are made, but removing doctors AND parents from the equation pretty much takes out all accountability and responsibility for the actions of the kids.

    Detroit, Mi

    April 23, 2009 at 6:15 pm |
  79. Pat

    A resounding YES! It is so refreshing to finally begin to see the United States of America move out of the era of the Puritans and the Puritan imposition of their version of suppressive morality which we all know never worked anyway.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:15 pm |
  80. Amber

    Absolutely. In fact, I agree with most scientists that say that there should be no restrictions on obtaining plan B, regardless of age or any other factor. A girl or women of any age can make the decision to have sex, to get herself on birth control, to get pregnant, to have a child, or to give up a child, without parental consent. This is the just the next step in the process, and a step that will help prevent abortions and unwanted pregnancies. It is a win-win situation for everyone; Conservatives are once again just sore losers. They are clinging to any semblance of a unifying philosophy, as they see the foundation of their party crumbling and cracked to the core. They claim they want less government intervention in private lives? Then get out of my uterus!

    April 23, 2009 at 6:15 pm |
  81. Indra

    Absolutely! I was raised in a very conservative home and still hold on to my religious beliefs and ideals – nothing is more important to me than my relationship with God.

    The issue of a 17-year old possibly being pregnant, however, should have NOTHING to do with religious beliefs. I bet the same comments we hear now are the same comments that went around when condoms were first introduced.

    I don't believe a 17-year old should be having sex, but if she chooses to she should be able to keep herself from getting pregnant. It's the responsible choice.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:15 pm |
  82. David in Florida

    Because this pill is available, a parent can't tell their 17 year old daughter not to have unprotected sex? Hello-give me a break!

    April 23, 2009 at 6:15 pm |
  83. Sarah

    Yes. No one can encourage promiscuity. God did that when she created heterosexuality. Thank god she made me a Lesbian!

    April 23, 2009 at 6:15 pm |
  84. ryan helton

    Row v. Wade established a woman's right to control her own body, and that right should be upheld, even in the face of her own parent's opposition. Parents should advocate responsible actions involving sex, but ultimately it is not their choice and not their body.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:15 pm |
  85. Anna Devore

    Of course. Get real. Teens planning to have sex will already have strategy. This will help young women caught up in the moment and if you don't understand this you don't understand human nature.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:15 pm |
  86. sharon goedkoop

    YES!!!!! As a social worker who works with the very troubled children born to children too young to recognize what they are taking on when they give birth to babies, I say, we need to prevent teen births. How about if all those who are opposed to birth control/abortion/morning after pills take a turn fostering and adopting the children born to these children?

    April 23, 2009 at 6:15 pm |
  87. Sue

    A resounding YES, Plan B — emergency contraception — should be available to 17 year olds and further all age restrictions should be lifted.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:15 pm |
  88. Sogolds

    Not everyone has a great relationship with their parents who knows, they may even get beaten or kicked out and it's better to prevent a pregnancy than not have enough financial or moral support and later be criticized for being a dumb young parent or take money from the government. By the time a person is 17 usually they are doing what they want anyway.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:15 pm |
  89. Rich Monk

    Hey Jack,
    If the morning after pill contributes to teen sex than it is more probable that a good steak dinner contributes to obesity!
    Suppressing knowledge to young women is a moral crime prepetrated by the cruel and selfish side of religion. Ever see a male dog hounding a female dog in heat? It is relentless. The male dog eventually gets what it wants. The human male is no different! And anybody who thinks different is a damn fool, and ignoramous.

    Rich Monk,
    Carlsbad, CA>

    April 23, 2009 at 6:15 pm |
  90. Chi-chi

    No. There are no studies showing the future harmful effects these pills can can on a female's body. Moreover, at age 17, a girl is not mature enough to understand the seriousness behind taking a pill as strong as the morning after-pill. This ruling will do nothing more but increase sexual encounters amongst under-aged females and continue misuse ofover the counter prescription drugs.

    Washington, DC

    April 23, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  91. Vicki Wall

    Since the age of consent is 16, then the morning after pill, all birth control pills, and abortions should be available with out parental consent as well. If they can legally have sex with anyone, of any age at 16, then the rest of the laws should catch up with the times. It is rather backward to allow 16 year olds to legally consent to sex, but forbid them access to effective ways to deal with pregnancy issues. We wonder why we have the highest illegitiment birth rate in the world. Conservative southern states are the highest in the country.

    Its time people accept the fact that kids have sex whether you like it or not.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  92. Annie, Atlanta

    Of course they should. I'm sick of this issue being political. It's personal and private. While we're at it, I think cops should take fire hoses a al 60s protester style to right to lifers outside abortion clinics. They are invading patient privacy in the worst way possible.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  93. Mike Page in South San Francisco, CA

    Morning after pill? What happened to the Bushies "abstinence" teaching? If that had worked, there wouldn't be any need for the MAP (morningafterpill).

    One thing for sure, the MAP beats some septic back alley abortion, or the fatal use of a coathanger by some poor desperate girl.

    Boys and girls are going to do what boys and girls have always done.
    I may be an old man now, but I was a boy once. I remember.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  94. Devon

    Phoenix, AZ

    Absolutely! People who call it an "abortion pill" do not understand how it works – it will NOT terminate an existing pregnancy. It simply does not allow a fertilized egg to attach to the uterine wall. People have long thought things like this will encourage promiscuity and bad choices, but this just keeps those who are going to make bad choices from procreating. To be honest, I would rather have 17 year olds having sex SAFELY and SMARTLY and RESPONSIBLY than fumbling around and accidentally getting pregnant.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  95. Jennifer

    I have 3 Daughters, and if they chose to have sex as teenagers it wouldn't be because of my lack of talking to them about it, and I would hope that they would make the decision to either be on birthcontrol already or go get plan B. I would rather my girls do that then become mothers before they even graduate high school. That said I do hope they would talk to me about it.. but if they are going to hide it at least the prevention is there..

    April 23, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  96. Ah Tung

    yes, they should be avail without doctor prescription, AND for free, BUT they need to go see a cousellor or social worker to obtain this. Because if they need this pill, that means they didn't use condoms, which means they could be at risk for STDs. So they need to be told of these risks in hopes that they choose better methods. I believe its better to teach them to make the right decisions/ decisions which works for them. BE SAFE.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  97. DC-African in Colorado

    It just came to my attention that republicans opposition to any progress is a sign of mentality that was first inserted into their minds by anti-American value groups.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  98. John Blair

    Yes, I'm all for making Plan B available to 17 year olds. Anything which hurts the Republican Party/Taliban USA is good for ALL Americans. The more Bu$h policies which are reversed the better. They may be the opposition but Republicans are NOT LOYAL. If I think the Democrats are going too far, I'll vote for the Greens.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  99. Dave

    Isn't it wonderful that the FDA has chosen to deal, realistically, with the reality of teenage life. I'm sure that the Palins would have welcomed this decision 2 years ago.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  100. Florence Cowan

    Absolutely YES! If teens are having sex "without" their parent's approval or concent, they should be able to purchase condoms, birth control and Plan B.
    Abstinence doesn't work – just ask Grandma Sarah Palin!

    April 23, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  101. Dee in Palm Coast FL

    Not only should 17-year-old girls be able to get the morning-after pill without a prescription, but so should ANY girl who is sexually active. And we ALL know that includes a wide variety of ages. At least those of us whose heads are above the sand know it.

    As for those who are against this on the basis of being "conservative", well, aren't their daughters all virgins anyway?

    So it shouldn't even come up in their family.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  102. Melinda

    If parents haven't done enough to instill values in their children that include their children talking to them in times of need, whats to stop them from having sex and getting pregnant? If this is the best that we can do to stop teen pregnancy, so be it. Kids who are old enough to watch rated R movies and watch the sexually overpowered television, then surely they are going to have sex, and surely they should be able to protect themselves from the "big change" that they're more than likely not ready for. All of these movies, tv shows, commercials, music, and video games that are sexually charged never show the aftermath of sex including pregnancy and STD's and if you don't talk to your kids about it, how else do you expect them to deal with it except behind your back?

    Melinda, 27, Yorktown VA

    April 23, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  103. Jill

    Yes! As a current high school teacher, I'm here to tell you that 17 year-olds are have sex, regardless of whatever their parents want to believe. Unfortunately, I have seen many promising students, male and female, lives' derailed by accidental pregnancies. Students leave to have children and rarely do they return. If your 17 year-old is not having sex, its because they have made a conscious decision not to; not because they don't "get it" or "can't." Making this available only acknowledges a reality that teens are faced on a daily basis.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  104. Ellen

    Absolutely! It can be nearly impossible to schedule a doctors appointment within the 72 hour period that the pill is effective. Conservatives like Ann Coulter are quick to point out that single mothers are at the root of the country's problems, yet they are unwilling to take measures that would prevent unwanted pregnancies.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  105. selena

    Yes. It is a form of birth control, not a method of abortion. It's time to think logically and not with our emotions.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  106. Michael

    Jack, I have a question. Has not having a doctors prescription prevented 17 year old girls, or any girl, from having unprotected sex?

    April 23, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  107. Wendy

    I live in Texas. If a 17 year old is arrested, they are not charged as a juvenile. They are charged as an adult. If a 17 year old can be criminally charged as an adult, then they should be able to make their own reproductive choices. I know that for many of my high school friends, having this opportunity would have prevented many unwanted pregnancies.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  108. Gerardo

    YESSS!, teens are going to have sex anyway, might as well try and save some tax payer money. NO child is ready to take care of another child adequately.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  109. Tom Warren

    Yes, plan B should be available to 17-year old girls (and youger girls). It may be parents' right to teach their children about sex, but many, many do not–and the US has one of the highest rates of teenage pregancy in the industrial world. How long are parents going to cling to the notion that if they don't talk to their children about sex, kids will just forget about having it. Wake up!

    April 23, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  110. Steven Johnson

    This is definitely a step in the right direction. A woman's choice whether or not to have a child must come before politics. The argument that this will increase sexual promiscuity is completely absurd. Being a teen myself, I understand that the consequences of sex are rarely considered before the act is committed. Teens are driven by their hormones and this fact will not change. The only thing that our society can do to decrease the negative effects of teen sex is to provide the proper avenues, so that females can the best decision for themselves.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  111. Iredia Olaye

    As a seventeen year old female, I believe that they selling of the morning after pill is a great idea. Teens are having sex and America has to accept it. Instead of ignoring it we need to embrace it by providing support and alternatives. The morning after pill will stop abortions and give teenage females more options. I know my body and at 17 I am mature enough to make decisions regrarding my body.
    If I am old enough to drive, I am old enough to buy the morning after pill!

    Iredia Olaye, New Jersey

    April 23, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  112. Samantha

    The availability of the morning after pill is long over due. I agree that it should be an over the counter drug. Too much regulation is in place by the FDA with regard to what drugs people choose take in this country. Hopefully, because it will be available in non-prescription form the cost will be less. Now, women have one more choice. I'm glad!

    April 23, 2009 at 6:17 pm |
  113. Nancy in North Bay, Ontario

    YES!
    In the ideal world, a young woman "in trouble" would sit down with her folks, and together they would work out what to do. But in too many real families, that sort of Golden Book solution just not going to happen. A frightened young woman who discovers to her horror that she is pregnant has enough to worry about without wondering whether her father is going to beat her to death or turn her out into the street.
    To those who are worried that this will encourage irresponsibility in young women, I'd like to ask why it's always been okay for the boys who did this to them to get a free pass.
    It's way past time for this sort of emergency help to be available!

    April 23, 2009 at 6:17 pm |
  114. Ash, Atlanta

    Isn't it a no brainer when you can prevent ruining two lives? Then they become everyone elses problem.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:17 pm |
  115. Amy Kathleen

    Parents have a responsibility to know what their children are doing. You can't require the government to ban sale of a product that has gone through the required drug testing, and been proven safe, because you don't want it to be legal for your kid to disobey you and use it! That is not the FDA's job. That's like saying it should be illegal for Pepsi to be sold to minors in most parts of Utah!
    Plan B is going to be way more expensive then condoms, so I find the idea that the ability to use it will lead to a spike in promiscuity. What it means is now, when a condom breaks, a 17 year old can legally purchase a drug to prevent an embryo from forming- whether her mother thinks she should be punished for her mistake by being forced to bear a child, or not.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:17 pm |
  116. Mike

    Absolutely not! Conservatives are right, I am outraged at this as a parent! What's next? This is going to make it easier for kids to sneak and hide the things they are doing wrong. Maybe we should take away accountability all together and just load our kids book bags up with condoms and KY jelly, then tell them to become porn stars because its ok. What a liberal joke and mockery of morality! This country's decision makers concern me....

    April 23, 2009 at 6:17 pm |
  117. witchnwtx

    Teenagers can buy all sorts of drugs over the counter now. Decongestants and laxatives and cough medicine are much more dangerous than Plan B. In the meantime, pregnancy can cause worse of medical problems than contraceptives. No parent wants their teen having sex or pregnant. If a teen is smart enough to get Plan B, should we let them make this decision? Part of growing up is learning from your mistakes and taking care of them.

    Susan
    San Antonio, TX

    April 23, 2009 at 6:17 pm |
  118. K.

    Jack, I think that this decision is long overdue. As a college student I have seen my fair share of my female peers who are fresh out of high school, still 17, and pregnant because they could not get the morning-after pill because they were embarassed or their parents forbade them. I also know that girls as young as 16 go to the free clinics around my area without the knowledge of their parents and are on birth control anyway. I think that this conservative thought process of abstinence just does not work it is time for a new approach. Maybe, education rather than abstinence? Plus, parents need to involve themselves in their children's lives so that they know what is going on in their lives so that we can cut down on teen pregnancies.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:17 pm |
  119. Hannah D

    If we want to allow & encourage children to have unprotected sex by giving PERMISSION to prevent unwanted babies, what about the increased healthcare costs TO EVERYONE when unprotected sex creates a society with increased STDs, HIV, AIDS, the accompanying psychological issues and the long-term ramifications of these diseases?
    I vote no.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:17 pm |
  120. Yuri

    Where to start; Teens have been having sex since the earth was flat. We, of the Great American Experiment have deemed sex bad, and the possibility that a dumb teen not wishing to push a baby carriage and be a lousy parent is even worse?
    Sex in teen life is impulsive, hormone and invincibility driven. Parenting is a deliberate daily job which requires years of commitment. If one's not committed, PLEASE TAKE THE MORNING AFTER PILL, and don't gestate just because you were/are horny. And the rest of you?
    Get over it! or better, YOU pay for that unwanted kid.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:17 pm |
  121. celeste handzel

    SIMPLY PUT -NO!!!!!!!

    April 23, 2009 at 6:17 pm |
  122. Sam

    I find it funny that no one is outrage that 17 year old are having sex, but upset that they are able to take the morning after pill. If it's ok for them to have sex it should be ok to take whatever they want.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:18 pm |
  123. Chris

    I'm tired of listening to people say that using counter measures for things like pregnancy will make teenagers want to have un-protected sex more often. People need to grasp reality that teenagers have sex, and I think that that allowing them to buy Plan-B over the counter will help reduce teen pregnancies and save a lot of young people from something that they are not ready for.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:18 pm |
  124. Jessica

    I know that things happen to young ladies and I'd rather give my daughter a pill, rather than have her go through a painful procedure. I know it would have saved a certain 17- year old's mother a lot of embarrassment. I am pro- choice because I believe there's a time and a place for everything we may not be able to stop them from having sex ,but we can sure stop them from being burdened by early parenthood.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:18 pm |
  125. Norman

    Yes, Yes, Yes! How dare anyone decide wether another should take a pregnancy to term. That is worse that the Taliban because the opponents should know better. The fear of sex by religionists is unnatrural,

    April 23, 2009 at 6:18 pm |
  126. Eileen

    Ten-year olds and younger ought to have access to this drug – requiring that a girl or woman risk becoming pregnant is obscene – as in cases of incest and rape – or whatever. We don't need more unwanted babies. I wish that all the holier-than-thou folks who are so concerned about all fetuses but don't give a damn about what happens to those fetuses when they are born would mind their own business and stop trying to legislate "morality". Not to mention – we have people in this country and on this planet who are starving to death, and we continue to use up the earth's resources – does anybody recall ZPG (zero population growth)?

    April 23, 2009 at 6:18 pm |
  127. charles igou

    Yes! 17 year old girls and younger should have access to the morning after pill if there is a chance that the young girl may be pregnant. It is better to be safe than sorry for ever.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:18 pm |
  128. Carole Syse from Wisconsin

    As with all sexual protection, there needs to be more education and conversation. Men/boys may feel condomns are unnecessary with the availability of this pill for women/girls. There is no singular protection solution. Parents should discuss ALL options with both sexes, instead of depending on females to take care of the solution. I do agree that there's always a danger in providing something like this to a young person, but isn't it more dangerous to provide nothing at all?

    April 23, 2009 at 6:18 pm |
  129. Larry

    Finally! I never understood how the Bush administration could justify blocking Plan B. I almost looks like their intent was to "punish promiscuity." Let's stop legislating morality. I predict that abortion rates will plummet. Anti-abortion conservatives should be pleased.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:18 pm |
  130. Cassie

    I don't think that seventeen year old females should be able to use plan B without seeing a doctor first becaue it would only be abuse to constantly take it over and over again. Abstinence is the only effective plan.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:18 pm |
  131. Michelle

    Yes. The government has no place in telling anyone what they can and can't do with/put into their own body.

    If the parents can't be so understanding so as not to shame the girl into secrecy, then she will have to look out for her own future as any mature adult does and make that decision for herself.

    Sometimes parents don't raise their children to be good adults, but rather to be obedient. It's a recipe for disaster.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:18 pm |
  132. Margaret

    Yes, it should be available to all ages. If they are having sex then they should be able to have the responsibility for deciding if they are going to have a child. Remember that we are human and that we all make mistakes. As for "promoting promiscuity", aren't they allready having sex so whats to be stopped?

    April 23, 2009 at 6:18 pm |
  133. Karen, Pittsburgh, PA

    Honestly Jack I don't know what is happening in this world. Wall street screws up and gets our money, car manufacturers are getting bailed out, the Speaker of the House, well, let's just not go there, and now 17 year olds are going to have sex and an abortion. Am I the only one sane person living on this planet, going to work, paying my bills, paying taxes, and having others profit from my honestly?

    April 23, 2009 at 6:19 pm |
  134. JoAnn in Cleveland

    Yes! 17-year olds are having sex without parental permission or doctors' prescriptions. If they aren't preventing pregnancy in the heat of the moment, then allow them a second chance with the morning after pill.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:19 pm |
  135. Judy E.

    Hello, Jack. You handsome devil! If Aids and STD's haven't given pause to those who ARE promiscuous, this pill certainly won't! The Far Right, that is usually Far Wrong, seems to want more unwanted babies that they're unwillingly to adopt. Take care handsome! Really, you're a good guy and you have common sense.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:19 pm |
  136. Mark n Nebraska

    Jack,
    Have we degraded as a nation to this pathetic point now where we teach responsibility to our kids, we expect it from adults, but we allow women (and men) to be irresponsible about creating a life, and destroying it without an ounce of responsibility taken? This pill makes it an afterthought and easy way out of irresponsible behavior in the first place. How truly sad.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:19 pm |
  137. Doug

    Considering they could go die for their country at 18 ....... sure, what the heck, let 'em get the M.A.P. with out the doc's ok. (NJ)

    April 23, 2009 at 6:19 pm |
  138. Nassim

    As a physician, I approve of the use of plan B, even in the absence of a prescription. Responsible use of Plan B can drastically reduce the incidence of unwanted teen pregnancies. Empowering teenagers to make responsible decisions even when they haven't behaved in a responsible fashion can prevent the landslide of consequences that may follow: prematurity, medical complications, and Medicaid dependance just to name a few.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:19 pm |
  139. Alethia Barnes

    Yes! The federal government has said children are able to make decisions about themselves at the age of nine. Fact -Young people are sexually active.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:19 pm |
  140. Loretta

    Yes. In fact, the morning after pill should be available to everyone, just like condoms. This is an extra layer of protection that we have kept from young women, and it is time stop the nonsense.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:19 pm |
  141. judy c

    Jack, sometimes the authoritarian parents who shout the loudest about "parental control" are the last ones who should be considered. Whether it's access to Plan B or an abortion, the need for either could quite possibly be because a father, grandfather, uncle, or older brother committed RAPE. These girls are threatened with a myriad of horrific measures if they "tell", so how, in God's name, are they going to obtain permission?

    April 23, 2009 at 6:19 pm |
  142. Kate Robins

    Plan B needs an educational component. Patients need to understand what they're taking, risks, if it's compatible with other drugs they may be taking, or medical conditions or allergies. Kids don't do this much with illicit drugs and dealers of illegal drugs don't care. This is FDA approved. Should the minors be accountable for the risk?

    April 23, 2009 at 6:19 pm |
  143. Betty in Syracuse

    Do parents give permission to 17 yr olds to have unprotected sex? It's too late if the 17 yr old is looking for the morning after pill. The pill isn't any more dangerous than theactivity that was engaged in, or the propect of an unwanted pregnany.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:19 pm |
  144. mark

    Jack its to bad they didn't worry about exporting all of our jobs to other countries as much as the morning after pill I wonder if some of the parents of some of these polititions didn't miss the boat when they didn't take the pill of course they never had such a pill back then and if they did they sure didn't make it available to the public kinda like our gongress doesn't make much of anything public there doing I wonder if they could come up with a pill for all of them to take to tell the truth once in a while to the american people

    April 23, 2009 at 6:19 pm |
  145. The Rev. Dr. Jens Bargmann

    The so-called "Morning-After-Pill" can obviously result in an abortion, the only difference to other abortions being that the woman does not know, if she has aborted or not. Human life begins at the moment of conception, and every way to intentionally end a pregnancy before the birth of the child, not matter how early or late in the pregancy, kills an inncocent human life. When will we finally understand that? How can a country like America that otherwise understands that it is the duty of the strong to protect the weak, kill its weakest and not go collectively insane over it? Or do we go insane?

    April 23, 2009 at 6:20 pm |
  146. Betty Jacobsma

    Do people who object to teens having access to the morning after pill believe it is better for a teen who does not want a child to be forced to have one than to be given access to preventing a pregnancy? Those who complain that these pills are too dangerous obviously do not realized that carrying and delivering a newborn is MUCH more dangerous in terms of both mortality and morbidity for the female than taking the morning after pills or than having an abortion.
    The purpose of making these pills more available is to avoid unwanted pregnancies and to avoid abortions.
    Betty
    New Port Richey, FL

    April 23, 2009 at 6:20 pm |
  147. Chad from Los Angeles, CA

    Yes, especially in my neighborhood. Mothers walking up and down the streets with 2-5 kids in tow. Why do we keep having kids when we can’t even afford transportation?

    We need a new law that if you can’t afford a car, then you can’t have any children. One child per car you can afford!

    April 23, 2009 at 6:20 pm |
  148. Melanie

    No, I think that you can have an abortion, have a baby, have adoption-but no morning after pills, no birth control pills. Birth control pills are reported as virtually harmless and so are the patch; yet the research, which is rarely reported on shows otherwise. And now the extreme dollop to end all dollops to top this hormone cake craziness: the morning after pill. Metabolic disorders are rising fast; obesity is an epidemic and we are the trusting idiots to anything the pharmeceutical industry sells us. Please just have the abortion.......

    April 23, 2009 at 6:20 pm |
  149. Claudia, Cedar City, Utah

    Absolutely. All women should have the right to the pill regardless of age. Keep in mind that many parents are not receptive nor understanding of girls who find themselves with an unwanted pregnancy. Shouldn't our freedoms be available to all Americans???

    April 23, 2009 at 6:20 pm |
  150. james sloan

    Dear Jack, Asyou already know parents have no rights when it comes to our children. As a parent of 7 children [5 here and 2 in thailand] and 5 grandchildren, I learned early on to keep the gov. out of my ability to raise my family. If you are in control of your children , it should not matter. Jim Sloan phoenixville Pa

    April 23, 2009 at 6:21 pm |
  151. Allen G

    A 17 yr old has the right to make an informed choice on life threatening surgery. A pregnancy is a life altering event. It is absolutely correct for the person who is directly affected by the consequences to have the final say. This is a civil rights issue. The religious arguments against contraception are irrelevant and should be ignored.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:21 pm |
  152. Bryan

    Those who opposes the morning after pill do so while utterly ignoring the benefits it provides. The pill will prevent unwanted pregnancies thus preventing not only abortions but child welfare costs from rising, both of which are a plus for the conservative ideology. It never ceases to amaze me that people still use the argument that birth control will "increase promiscuity." First off being 17 will increase the likelihood that you will want to have sex, which anyone whose remembers high school can attest. Secondly if you are concerned about you child having sex, maybe you should remember it is your job to teach them the consequences of promiscuous behavior. Don't people ever think that parental influence may matter more than the availability of contraceptives?

    April 23, 2009 at 6:21 pm |
  153. Ginny

    Jack, as someone who has experienced them all – giving up a child for adoption at age 17, an abortion (with my then-future-, now-ex husband) single parenthood and finally a solid marriage of 25 yrs. and parent of three grown children, I have some perspective. (By the way, I don't regret either of the first two – that's not the point of this.) If this pill had been available to me back then, it would not have changed my sex habits. But it would have been much easier on my body. Not to mention school.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:21 pm |
  154. Lu Strayer

    Yes, If a teen age lad can have unprotected sex without parental permission, a teen age lassy should be able to use a morning after pill without parental permission as well.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:21 pm |
  155. Marius

    In 75% of the States in America the age of sexual consent is 16 years of age. If 16 year-olds are adult enough to make the decision about whether or not to have sex they are adult enough to decide if they want a child. It seems to me that families should be angrier about the age of sexual consent being 16 than about lowering the age for getting the Morning After Pill without a prescription.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:21 pm |
  156. David, NY

    This is one of those issues where you have to look at both sides of the story, would you rather babies be born into families that can't support them, and end up in orphanages? or would you like to give teen girls the idea that having unprotected sex Is ok? and raise the number of cases of HIV and other STD's? I don't know jack, this one's a doozy.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:21 pm |
  157. joyce cross

    i am a greatgrandmother so i feel fully qualified to answere this question, living now with four generations. any age sexually active female should be able to receive the morning after pill. along with that , should come information on reliable birth control methods.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:21 pm |
  158. Rachael

    As a young woman myself, I understand that not all girls can approach their parents about needing the morning after pill. If the parents have not prevented the teen from having sex in the first place, why should they have a say in the morning after pill which will prevent the issue of their teenage daughter getting pregnant? Ultimately if the girl thinks shes mature enough to have sex, then she shouldn't be stopped from making the responsible decision of getting Plan B if her first measure of contraception fails.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:21 pm |
  159. Nathan Columbus, Ohio

    Irresponsible sex leads to irresponsible child bearing. This is just another way to encourage irresponsibility in our global society. Guess its better than late term abortion though.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:22 pm |
  160. Connie

    Yes the way I see it our prisons are full of people that should of never been born

    April 23, 2009 at 6:22 pm |
  161. Charlie Thompson

    Yes, seventeen year olds (and younger) should be able to buy the "morning after" pill without a doctor's perscription. To opt otherwise, it seems to me, exemplifies the mood theory (where ignorance is mistaken for moral or ethical conscientiusness). To permit such purshases does not diminish a parent's 'right' to set a moral tone for their children. It merely mitigates otherswise irresponsible towards their children. Nor does it lead to sexual promiscurity. What it leads to is less unplanned/unplanned births.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:22 pm |
  162. Doug Schiffer

    The Morning After Pill should be available to all, without any restrictions. "abstainence only" sex education has been an abject failure. We shouldn't allow that failure to destroy more children's lives – regardless of the political leanings of their parents.

    It seems to be the nature of Conservatives to be angry with the world – mainly because their worldview doesn't mesh with the way things really are.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:22 pm |
  163. KT Long

    6:20p.m. 4/23/2009

    In answer to your question-–No,No,No,No. My reasoning is not due to moral or ethical or theological or philosophical but rather medico-legal.
    The child could have a hemorrhage or if she's unlucky enough to be pregnant and having an ectopic pregnancy then she's putting a chemical timebomb into her body--death can ensue. Her parents could be helpful to her even if she finds herself in this trouble and get her to see an MD who can counsel her and treat her with proper medical care and surveillance. Anything other than that is sheer medical maltreatment and the drug company can be open to multi-zillion dollar law suits. Also, this poor child can bleed out and die or have some sort of other catastrophic adverse drug reaction to this medication depending upon her own particular sensitivity and biochemical makeup. Thx, KT Long, Freehold, NJ

    April 23, 2009 at 6:22 pm |
  164. Vera Sims

    I am a mother who has raised two daughters and when they were 17 and about to graduate high school, I discussed if they needed birth control. My daughters are now grown and no babies until they were married.. We do not believe in abortion, so as not to need one, use contraceptives. I truly believe that a 17 yr old who is having sex should have the option of taking the new version of the birth control pill. I do not understand why the parents need to be advised. Are they aware that their daughter is already having sex? I doubt it. Sarah Palin's daughter was this age and did not tell her mother that she was sexually active.
    Who are these people who keep their heads in the sand about teenagers and sex.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:22 pm |
  165. Harry

    Yes. It's about time people wake up. The conservatives have their heads in the sand.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:23 pm |
  166. Amy Yadav

    I absolutely think that the morning after pill should be made available to all teenage girls without a prescription. In a perfect world teenagers would wait until adults to begin sexual activity, but since we know this isn't happening, these girls should have a safe and private method for taking responsibility. The pills need to be available over the counter in order to make the pill available within the 72 hours needed in order for it to be effective. It would prevent many unwanted pregnancies and abortions and those who oppose abortion should welcome Plan B for this reason alone! Teenage sexual activity is a very sensitive topic for most families and each family handles these issues differently. For many young women an unwanted pregnancy could feel like a death sentence.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:23 pm |
  167. Marius from Toronto, Canada

    In 75% of the States in America the age of sexual consent is 16 years of age. If 16 year-olds are adult enough to make the decision about whether or not to have sex they are adult enough to decide if they want a child. It seems to me that families should be angrier about the age of sexual consent being 16 than about lowering the age for getting the Morning After Pill without a prescription.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:23 pm |
  168. Vlada

    Good decision and I hope the age restrictions will be lifted as well. Fear of pregnancy rarely stops girls from having sex. Education does that. And until (if ever) we can convince our girls to avoid having unprotected sex, we must allow them to at least avoid unwanted pregnancy. I am a mother of a teenage girl and I am all for it. I hope my daughter will tell me if she is sexually active, but just in case she chooses not to, I want her to be educated on what she can do in order not to ruin her life by getting pregnant. Both of us are pro-choice and having an abortion is a much more difficult choice than taking a pill that prevents an unwanted pregnancy. And I am sure, having this option WILL NOT make girls more promiscuous.
    Vlada
    TX

    April 23, 2009 at 6:23 pm |
  169. Sue Settles

    Yes. The morning after pill should be available to any woman or child who has sex and would like to prevent a pregnancy that is unwanted. I included the term "'child" because legally in my state a female under the age of 18 is a child. Reducing the number of pregnancies by children in America could go a long way towards reducing the numbers of children that are cared by persons other than their parents. I have worked in the child welfare field for over 34 years and I have witnessed first hand the serious social problems surrounding children who have children. We need to wake up and look at the statistics surrounding 12, 13, 14, 15, 16,&17 year old children who are giving birth every year and make a concentrated effort to promote pregnancy prevention programs that are more realistic than abstinence only.....that would include making the "morning after pill" available as a last resort after either an unwanted or impulsive sexual act could lead to an unwanted child.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:23 pm |
  170. Elizabeth, Charleston, SC

    17 year olds should be allowed to get the morning-after pill without a prescription. Also, those younger who need it should be allowed the same privilege. We don't need any more unwanted pregnancies, abortions, or unwanted children taken care of by taxpayer money.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:23 pm |
  171. glenn , southeast-texas

    this is a moderated comment . the issue is the behavior of children under 18 years of age . there's no pregnancy-correct ? so it boils down to some child taking some pills to prevent pregnancy and to skirt the fact she engaged in activity not approved by her parents . we're dealing with judgment errors that become progressively worse the younger the child . it makes no difference if she's 18 years or 12 years ! the worse outcome is probably some gut trouble , menstrual irregularity , and possibly headaches . after a few of those episodes , she'll probably catch on . ultimately--it's a parental problem-if she doesn't wise up . Glenn–Southeast , Texas

    April 23, 2009 at 6:23 pm |
  172. Carole Lindsey

    Of course, Hopefully, the wider availability of the drug will lead to fewer abortions.

    The fear of the right that the pill will lead to promiscuity, is ludicrous.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:23 pm |
  173. Robb

    Jack,

    I think it's perfectly acceptible that 17 year olds have access to Plan B. Please note this message comes from a registered Republican.

    My thoughts on this area based on:
    1) There is a strong effort by the religious right to support the pro life movement.
    2) There is a strong difference between the faith of spirituality and the business of religion.
    3) IMO, the focus of religion to thwart this effort outlines the conflict of the spirital (love all) against the religious (business of distressed people in pews).
    4) The success of Plan B potentially weakens the successful business model of many pro-life activists and religion as business endeavors.

    In short, the doctrine of our religions were written when the world was largely agrarian and large families were desired. In our society the opposite is true and the best example of this is Octomom. Where are the pro-life folks supporting Ms. Sulemon in her pro-life effort?

    In closing, if there is anything we can do to mitigate society paying to raise unwanted children through a flawed welfare system, then by all we have a responsibility to act.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:24 pm |
  174. Bo

    I believe in a woman's right of choice; however, should we really be giving teenagers the "morning-after" pill when they are being strip searched for ibuprofen. How can we expect our kids to make responsible choices when they have these adults as "role models"?

    April 23, 2009 at 6:24 pm |
  175. nounou, Florida

    If you ask me as a pharmacist . The age for buying Plan B without an Rx should be reduced to 16 years old female . The restriction should be to sale to female only with a proper ID...to avoid access to rapists....

    April 23, 2009 at 6:24 pm |
  176. shirley

    In the majority of the states in this country, a 17yo is considered an adult and can be inprisoned for life without parol, so why should those same individual not have the right to decide what happens to their bodies

    April 23, 2009 at 6:24 pm |
  177. Samuel from Lagos, Nigeria

    i think this underscores the height to which the US govt is determined to degrade moral values.
    You are simply telling the already promiscous teens to fire on at rocket speed since they can cover up their deeds with abortion using tax payers money of govt backed pills.

    well i think the US should be getting ready for sexual crisis.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:24 pm |
  178. -

    They shouldn't. But, is that the appropriate question? I think the real question is whether or not judges should be legislating.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:25 pm |
  179. SHERIN K

    I believe this decision will do a great deal of good, i also believe that all age restrictions should be removed. We are citizens of a democracy and it is important to remember that moral dilemmas and politics should never interfere with health issues, else we are no different from countries that adopt strict religious codes to govern their population and inevitably women's health becomes inconsequential to the state.
    In defending parents rights, we often ignore the rights of the child to protect herself. Pregnancy is a life altering event and the person involved should have every right to decide and not the parent.
    I applaud this decision and cannot wait to live in a more progressive America.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:25 pm |
  180. Christina

    Matthew b., Plan B IS the morning after pill. You are right that it does not terminate a fetus.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:25 pm |
  181. David

    Seventeen year olds have the 'right' to have sex. Many of them exercise that right. They also have the 'right' to prevent pregnancy, even retroactively.

    Conservatives and the right-to-life groups believe the fetus has 'rights' and is a 'person' at the moment of conception.. then at what point do they LOSE these rights since they don't seem to get any say until they are older than 17?

    April 23, 2009 at 6:25 pm |
  182. John

    Plan B and all other forms of birth control/abortion that allows a sperm and an egg to unite should be illegal. If you spent as much time covering the virtues of abstenance as you do promoting birth control/abortion, we may not need those options in the first place.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:25 pm |
  183. Cindy

    People seem to be commenting on the morality of teen sex, rather than the medical issues raised by an effort to eliminate doctors from the equation. If it's a drug, it should be prescribed by a doctor, no matter what the patient's age, sexual experience, personal motivations, etc.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:25 pm |
  184. Mary Jean Collins

    Absolutely the pill should be available to 17 years old. If she needs the pill it ought to be available to her. You cannot force young women to have children they are not prepared to care for without drastic results for her and society.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:26 pm |
  185. Chris

    Absolutely, sexually active adolescents need to have access to the pill because accidents do happen especially in an increasingly "sexually active" generation. What's the average age a person loses their virginity? I think it's around 17.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:26 pm |
  186. allison

    Yes, 17 year old girls should absolutely be able to get the morning after pill without a doctors prescription, way to go FDA! The morning after pill is a safety precaution as another contraceptive. As much as parents either don't want to face it or actually are naive enough not to realize it 17 year old kids (and younger) are having consensual unprotected sex. Rather than scorn them, they should be well educated and informed on the wide variety of contraceptives. Sex is among us, and instead of increasing the already high number of unintended pregnancies, kids should have as many options, access, and availability provided to them to have safe sex and prevent them from getting pregnant.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:26 pm |
  187. Stuart

    Thank God the current administration is allowing the US to incrementally catch up with the rest of the civilized world. I'm guessing conservative parents don't understand if their daughter needs to take the Plan B pill, their little house probably isn't in the order they think it is.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:26 pm |
  188. maria, california

    Absolutely! If they are old enough to have sex they are old enough for birth control. I am sick of paying for healthcare and social services for women who shouldn't have kids and can't pay for them. Birth control should be readily available for all and should be free to those that need it. It is way cheaper and safer then the alternatives.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:27 pm |
  189. shelly

    Jack,
    Please beleive that almost none of the women at the age of 17 would inform their parents that they had sex the night before. Someone who beleives that the same young women should let them know that they have made a decision about their own future, and what type of contraception they have decided to use is only fooling themseleves. Every young lady should have as many chooses as the health system can provide.

    Shelly, Ohio

    April 23, 2009 at 6:27 pm |
  190. Gary Sloan

    Jack...This is indeed a difficult one! The promiscuity issue always, the abortion issue and the condom issue. always seems to come up. If the conservatives do not want any of the aforementioned, maybe they should lock-up their sons and daughters until they are 21. At 58-years of age, I do not believe anything is going to stop our youth from engaging in sexual activities, which I do not support by the way. I would simply hope and pray that parents did their very best to discuss ALL sexually related issues so as to avoid "early sex" and subsequently, unwanted pregnancies. But as a last resort, I believe it is a better alternative than 17-year olds getting pregnant. I certainly feel for the parents regarding this sensitive subject.

    Gary
    Lexington,KY

    April 23, 2009 at 6:28 pm |
  191. Terri - Tulsa

    This is lunacy! 17-year olds have to get a doctor's prescription for drugs, period. Because they are still minors, their parents must also be informed that they are receiving any prescriptions. You can't change the law for one drug! If they are sexually active, they need to be honest with their parents and get on some sort of birth control, legally. If it is a case of unconsentual sex, it should be reported and their parents will find out anyway. If we legalize giving them this drug without a prescription, what is next???

    April 23, 2009 at 6:28 pm |
  192. Mio

    Is there a Night Before Self-Control pill?

    April 23, 2009 at 6:28 pm |
  193. connie, pennsylvania

    This "steps on parents rights?" What an antiquated comment. Just like believing "abstinence only" is the only way to go. B/c we find out time and time again....teens find "another" way to go!
    I had a freind who refused to "allow" her 17 yr. old daughter to be on the pill, b/c it "gave her a license to have sex." 6 months later, the daughter was PG.
    Guess she didn't need that "license" after all!

    It is ridiculous to believe that this pill, will increase sex.
    What it does is... after a young couple does a stupid thing, and has unprotected sex, it give them an option.....when the "romance" has passed, and reality sinks in!
    17 or 18?? Parents "rights" of a 17 yrs old?
    one year does not make a difference in being an immature, uneducated, usually below poverty level, " teen parent".
    This is a no brainer, for less abortions, and more unwanted teen pregnancy!

    April 23, 2009 at 6:28 pm |
  194. Lauren Allmayer

    Jack,

    Not all of us come from families with parents who take responsibility for their children's health care or well being. In fact, there are thousands of women under the age of 18 who have parents that do not support them or even care about what they are doing. These young women should have full access to pregnancy prevention, including Plan B, if they so choose, because they are already living as adults and should be able to choose when to have a family. We may not think of it, but policy such as age restrictions or prescription restrictions make birth control methods inaccessible to young women who live in communities who do not support them in mind, body, and spirit. ALL birth control methods, and the education to go with it, should be easily accessible to every man and woman of reproductive age in the country.

    Lauren Allmayer
    Ypsilanti, Mi

    April 23, 2009 at 6:28 pm |
  195. Julia Smith

    Jack,
    It's about options. At 17, young women today have a lot of freedom. And at 17 we all make stupid decisions and choices. I don't think that she should be held hostage to a a bad decision when in many cases in less than 9 months she could probably make the decision for herself...

    April 23, 2009 at 6:28 pm |
  196. Brad, WI

    In this country we are pretty good at avoiding responsibility for our actions and teaching our next generation to do the same. The thing is...the consequences eventually find us one way or another. So this I believe is another step on a bad path that will eventually catch up to us.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:28 pm |
  197. sean - dublin ,ireland.

    YES, Then the government could save on welfare spending, and there prams/ buggys would'nt be blocking up the shopping centre on a saturday afternoon. from sean ,dublin ireland

    April 23, 2009 at 6:28 pm |
  198. dameon,

    Jack

    Unfortunately it probably will encourage promiscuity even further in our teens at the same time there will be less unwed mothers. the availability of this drug could affect a number of areas in our society.
    Most unwanted pregnancies lead to broken homes that lead to broken children that lead to crime, unproductive citizens, etc,etc,.. So which would u prefer.

    pittsburgh, pa

    April 23, 2009 at 6:29 pm |
  199. Jaclyn

    It seems as if the majority of people against the morning after pill are also against gays being able to adopt, welfare, and teaching adequate sex education. The teens that are having sex are going to have sex no matter what. We shouldn't be teaching that having a baby is "punishment" for your actions. Not all parents know what is right for their children. We should at least give the option and let the rest play out.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:30 pm |
  200. Tom Catchings

    A prescription should be required only in those instances where a prescription was required for the sex. Let's be serious – few of today's teen girls have morals and most are having sex , many as young as 13. Most mothers have no idea that their daughters are having sex and these would be the first to blame the pill on promiscuity. Let's make the pill easily available to all ages and cut down on abortion, welfare, foodstamps, etc,

    April 23, 2009 at 6:30 pm |
  201. Becky Morton

    The morning after pill should be made available to young women 17 yrs of age and over , and could be life-saving let alone a psychiatric form of healing depending on the circumstances of the choice [which believe me is not easy for this young woman!]. By this time parents have laid the groundwork for their siblings to know right from wrong, and be in charge of their bodies/including what is best for their overall health. No choice is easy, but sometime, somewhere, and in some circumstances we must trust our youth no matter how difficult the decision. At 17 it is their decision to make right and sometimes wrong decisions, but still the decisions are theirs' ; and parents need to realize this. Hopefully parents of today have not been careless in their own lives and have taught their children how precious life is, and passed this on. We can only pray.

    Becky P, – MA

    April 23, 2009 at 6:30 pm |
  202. Warren Allen

    So, you're not old enough to get married without your parents' consent, but you're free to tamper with your reproductive system by ingesting some drug with unknown effects? Not comment on right or wrong, but just observing that politics is ridiculously absurd.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:30 pm |
  203. cooper

    I thought disease control and pregnancy was the need for protection.
    So throw out the protection and bring in the fix-it. So whats the fix for the many diseases of unprotected sex. This sounds like the Pope is in charge.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:31 pm |
  204. Jayati Jenkins

    The real question is – whether parents can be honest with themselves about their children and about their own past behavior. If they can be so bold as to face the fact that neither they, nor their children are perfect; then the question need not be asked. If there is open dialogue between parents and children, then the child will discuss their pregnancy concerns with their parents and together, they will come up with a solution. They'll discuss the dangers of unprotected sex and about their feelings regarding an unborn fetus. If such dialogue is not possible, for whatever reason, then thank God this pill will be made available to our young-adult daughters.

    Talk to your children people! Don't leave it to the government to parent your child!

    April 23, 2009 at 6:32 pm |
  205. Nathan

    Jack, Why is it that the conservatives of this country are always looking for a way to prevent any liberal agenda designed to prevent more abortions? It's about time the right begins to understand that the left shares their sentiment that abortion isn't necessarily the best option. At least the liberals are advocating alternatives to abortion, they only thing the conservatives constantly preach is abstinence. While abstinence may work for some, others might require a combination of sex education and abstinence education. How can one possibly expect to eradicate a problem without putting forth any viable solutions?

    Nathan from San Diego.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:32 pm |
  206. Isabelle

    There are many girls that don't talk to a parent or guardian because they are scared, so I think that if the pill is available many girls will be safer. However, JUST the pill won't do, as a 17 year old myself I know that I need to take other safety measures.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:33 pm |
  207. Sue Settles

    Just checked. In Oklahoma in 2007, there were 2,386 live births to children under the age of 18 with 93 of these to girls age 14 and under. Oklahoma population is 3.5 Million.....roughly the same size as San Diego County. Wonder how many of these girls would have like to have had a "morning after pill" available when they needed it.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:33 pm |
  208. Bill, Upper New York State

    Question: Has unwanted teen pregnancies gone up in recent years? Answer: YES. Question: Will the taxpayers end up shouldering most of the resulting costs? Answer: YES. With two YES answers, it's time to go to Plan B!

    April 23, 2009 at 6:34 pm |
  209. Gary Sloan

    Why are all my comments awaiting moderation? That is ridiculous. My morning after comments were very sensitive!

    April 23, 2009 at 6:34 pm |
  210. Warren Allen

    From Chicago, Illinois

    So, a 17-year old girl can't get married without her parent's consent, but they can ingest some drug with untold effects? No comment on right or wrong, just observing that politics is ridiculously absurd.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:34 pm |
  211. Samuel from Lagos, Nigeria

    how would Obama like his daughter to walk up to him and tell him she do been having sex?

    he should re-think his actions.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:35 pm |
  212. jeff,,, Virginia

    Jack, to be honest, if parents were to really take charge of there children, there concern should not be there about the morning after pill,If we as parents, which i am a parent of three, 36,which waited until he married @ 30 to consider children, 22,which is in service and wanting to have a good career to marry and have children,,, but both I can see have been aware of the situations of having children before marriage, the one 5, and l have but the youngest have been talk to and concerns and reciprocation's of sex are truly noted in our life as caring parents, now I know what I'm talking about I was 17 and my wife 15 when she got pregnant, well I'm 50+ now, so I have learned, to Talk to my children, that's the POINT!!!! The parent that complain's cant seem to make the POINT to there children it seems!!!

    April 23, 2009 at 6:35 pm |
  213. Gayle

    Jack, Yes, yes,yes... I have never even heard of a group that raises or supports, in any useful way, all of those unwanted children that are the result of young human beings engaging in the most natural aspect of their bodies. Should our youth think about the consquences beforehand? Of course, but they also should not have to be penalized for the rest of their lives for being young, clueless and curious.
    Until those opposed to this practice take full responsibility for the result of unwanted pregnancies, they should keep their own counsel.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:36 pm |
  214. Michael Whittemore

    As a very wise lady has said in the past (Judge Judy), I own the air you breathe. If you are 17 you are not able to enter into any legal contract, and therefore you have no right to receive a prescription drug in your body without my permission.

    Michael Whittemore
    Costa Rica

    April 23, 2009 at 6:36 pm |
  215. Janet Davis

    No, absolutely NOT. As a woman I am troubled that certain "Women's Groups" say this is long overdue & I myself personally want to know what "Women's Groups" are being quoted. At the age of 17 you are still officially considered a minor & a decision with such a dramatic effect need not be taken lightly OR made alone. Parents deserve the right to know their child is contemplating needing this drug so if anything, they can assist their child in making more sound birth control decisions in the future. I am pro-choice & of course believe in a woman's right to choose, a WOMAN'S right, not a girl's right. I also am a staunch believer that kids need to be throughly educated about birth control & pregnancy BEFORE it becomes such a dire issue as this. At 18, you become an adult in the eyes of the law so not much can be done to take this choice out of the hands of those past the age of "adulthood" but we can stop minors from abusing it. We need to teach our CHILDREN about reproductive health rather than giving them free reign to try & make sense of this alone. No matter how "mature" a 17 yr old looks on the outside, inside she's still a kid. Parents, WAKE UP & do your JOB before Pandora's box is opened. Your children deserve better than this.
    Janet D.
    Huntsville, AL

    April 23, 2009 at 6:37 pm |
  216. Danielle

    Hey Jack, Why should a seventeen year old girl need the morning after pill anyway? I’m a fifteen year old girl and why would I want to mess up my life with irresponsible sex or sex in the first place. There’s always going to be that chances of getting pregnant, so what are they thinking. If these people are that scared of the consequences of their own actions than don’t do it in the first place.

    Danielle

    Westfield Pa

    April 23, 2009 at 6:38 pm |
  217. Mary White

    NO, NO, NO!!! I am so tired of judges running everything in this country. Girls under 17 should be under their parents' guidance and preparing for college. In my day, a guy was lucky to get a kiss on a date!!! The money for the manufacture of those pills should be spent on developing cures for diseases like multiples sclerosis.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:39 pm |
  218. pete

    It may help cut down on new kids

    April 23, 2009 at 6:39 pm |
  219. janice rupert

    yes...any female should have access to the morning after pill.

    Other lethal drugs are on the street that nobody wants to clean up...but this.... please! Everyone of us makes mistakes along the way. Not to pay the price would be compassionate.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:41 pm |
  220. Miss Lead

    Either it is the "morning after" pill or "the nine month" unwanted pregnancy.

    Miss Lead
    APO (Overseas)

    April 23, 2009 at 6:42 pm |
  221. Dennis

    Of course. I don't advocate 17 year old's having sex, but its the 21st century and they have sex whether you want to accept it or not. I'm 51 years old and I had sex at 15. Lets give these kids the tools they need to keep them from being teenage Moms and possibly ruining there lives.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:42 pm |
  222. Missy M

    In the end, this will do little to impact teen pregnancy rates. Plan B does not protect against STDs so anyone engaging in intimate activities needs to use a condom anyway to protect from disease and pregnancy. This is just another feel-good measure that makes little impact in the lives of most Americans. Gosh, Heaven forbid we actually encourage teens to to think before they act anyway!

    Missy M, Phoenix, Ariz.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:42 pm |
  223. Christine Smajda PA-S

    The Plan B emergency contraceptive is NOT an "abortion pill", hence the categorical identity of being a CONTRACEPTIVE, definition: An agent that prevents conception.
    ABORTION, definition: Expulsion from the uterus of an embryo or fetus before the age of viability.
    If the conception takes place even though this contraceptive is taken, the product of conception is not expulsed, nor does it endanger the pregnancy.

    At 17 years of age and even much younger, women can go to a clinic and get these services without parental consent. We ALL have rights to medical privacy. These young women can get REAL abortions (pharmacological and surgical) with out parental consent as well.

    So, lets get our priorities straight. Part of a parent's role is to prepare their child for the real world and teach them how to be responsible. Maybe if teens were properly educated at home instead of leaving it up to "health class", they would have a better understanding of these serious situations, thus enabling them to make logical decisions based on knowledge instead of fear.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:43 pm |
  224. Ted

    Think about it...3 .. 4..5 pills a week .How much do they cost. Fake pills sold on the street. Girls dying. Lawsuits. Boys buying them for there girl friends..Wake up mom and dads. Do you care..

    April 23, 2009 at 6:45 pm |
  225. Douglas J. Aldrich

    Yes.Our young people are going to have sex and we can not stop
    them. If the pill will stop a pregnancy I say pass out the pills and hope
    for the best.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:47 pm |
  226. Gary

    Jack, I wish this level of pharmacology was available back in the 1970's when my girlfriend and I had experienced a "wardrobe malfunction"... Neither of us was prepared or competent enough to handle parenthood at that time and we are both convinced to this day that it would probably have resulted in a nightmarish hell for that child, had it not been for a spontaneous and natural termination of the pregnancy. As we all know, "bad stuff can happen to good people" and these things don't care to age discriminate. Blessed be the "wanted child" for they shall know the beauty of abundance!

    April 23, 2009 at 6:48 pm |
  227. William Young

    Jack
    Who raises these young people and who is responsible for these people? Why does everyone want to usurp the authority of the parents yet still hold the parents responsible for anything these young people do.
    Bill from Boring

    April 23, 2009 at 6:51 pm |
  228. Patricia Durrant

    Let's not forget that circumstances alter cases,ie; the female that is being abused by a family member. They need to be protected from more than just an unwanted pregnancy. We really need to grow up in this country.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:56 pm |
  229. Amy

    I remember hearing a group of teenage girls talking about how to perform an abortion on themselves in a school rest room. The procedures they were discussing were dangerous and potentially fatal. That was in 1968. How quickly people forget that young girls used to risk death rather than having to tell their parents they were pregnant. It would be great if all children could talk to their parents about sex, but that's not reality. Girls are raped by their boyfriends or family members more often than we in a civilized society want to believe. Even when the sex is not rape, let's face it – teenagers aren't known their optimal judgment, and punishing them by forcing them to have an abortion or a child is cruel. For the men and religious people who campaign against birth control and abortion for women of any age, you have no right to impose your sexist/religious views on other people. Our jails are full of grown up unwanted children.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:57 pm |
  230. Brian Toews

    Reading these posts I cannot beileve what I am seeing. All of you so "in favor" of passing out the Plan B pill more than likely DO NOT have children so I am having trouble figuring out why your opinion is relevant at ALL? Bottom line, parents need to maintain an honest banter with their children about sexuality & pregnancy, no matter how uncomfortable they or their kids are over it. Parents turning the other cheek & pretending this "won't happen to them" are the reason kids have NO idea about birth control. It's time to have that uncomfortable talk everybody, get your daughters on birth control & give your sons condoms along with a serious discussion that they don't work if left in your wallet & that if they are true men they won't ask the girl to not use them. It is within all of our grasps to make a difference here, all we have to do now is have that uncomfortable talk & mean it. It's hard, I did it with my 12 yr old & while it embarrassed us both she now knows how to protect herself & is protecting herself, that's all I want. Time to take off those rose-colored glasses & get down to business.
    Brian T
    Huntsville, AL

    April 23, 2009 at 6:58 pm |
  231. Dee, New York

    Tom from Texas wouldn't be around if his grandmother had taken the pill back in 1866. I wonder what he thinks of that.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:58 pm |
  232. David A Whitaker

    Jack we can pay now or later, because young kids going to have sex anyway. Those parents that think their kids are not having, please get a life.
    Martinsburg, WV

    April 23, 2009 at 6:59 pm |
  233. Bryan in Colorado

    Yes they should have access to the pill in order to be able to have sex and not produce std's and unwanted pregnancy. Kind of like what we teach adults. We always tell teens to be responsible and then tell them they can't have the tools to do so.

    April 23, 2009 at 7:00 pm |