A judge has thrown a shoe the book at the Bush-era FDA’s restrictions on emergency contraception, ruling that the agency must scrap its policy of preventing young women under 18 from buying Plan B over the counter. He gave the administration 30 days to make the change, snarling — rightly — that the “political considerations, delays and implausible justifications” (not to mention whispers of teen sex cults!) tripping up the approval process for Plan B in general had stinkety-stank to high heaven. Rawk.
As Ellen Goodman wrote in 2005 of the redonkulous restriction: “What no one dared suggest is that just maybe teenagers should have the easiest, not the hardest access to Plan B. Aren’t the youngest precisely those who should be most protected from pregnancy? Or do we still think that motherhood should be the punishment for sex?” And: “If teenagers also need Plan B it’s because Plan A — abstinence — fails more often than condoms. Too many teenagers end up pregnant, facing Plan C: abortion or motherhood. In the name of protection, we are leaving teenagers far too vulnerable.” Now, one hopes, no more.