Sunday, April 25, 2010

Busybody on a global level

(name tags of four children in front, from left: Philippines, Hawaii, [Puerto] Rico, Cuba)

Yet another demonstration of cultural imperialism.

Yesterday Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke (D-N.Y.) introduced the Global Sexual and Reproductive Health Act of 2010. In a statement from Rep. Clarke’s office the act “seeks to strengthen and expand the U.S. government’s current program on international family planning and reproductive health into a more comprehensive sexual and reproductive health program.”


“By revising existing legislation to meet current international standards, we can establish an integrated, progressive model for delivering more efficient and effective sexual and reproductive health services across the globe.”

This reminds me of something that Steven Mosher, president of the Population Research Institute, stated recently as groups such as the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), United States Agency for Int'l Dev't (USAID) and Int'l Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) continue to assume and/or assert that millions and millions of women in developing nations want and need contraception -- when it's clean water and basic health care that are sorely needed.

"The existing programs of family planning are imposing Western views on people who have a different view of life and very different desires for family size," [Steven Mosher] said. The approach taken by such groups as UNFPA and Planned Parenthood is "contraceptive imperialism," according to Mosher, "exporting the mentality of Manhattan ... or Hollywood to relatively innocent, untouched corners of the world."

If the Philippines elects a leader from one of the presidential candidates who profess support for the Reproductive Health bill (HB 5043), then this cultural imperialism will very easily take place. And our leaders will sell our country, along with our values and people, wholeheartedly to the global conquerors.

1 comment:

sparks said...

Reproductive Health and many countries' commitment to legislate for RH is a result of the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) in 1994. The ICPD is a sort of global pact with key principles to which participating countries (including the Philippines) commit.

True, one might call it a cultural paradigm of sorts, one that equates human well-being with a woman's greater control of her fertility. It is individual and choice-centric rather than coercive or top-down.

I do not think it is quite accurate to put the blame only on the US or to claim that is is a case of cultural imperialism. The US government under Bush was dominated by conservatives - hence the drying up of US funding for the support of RH.

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