Men Should Not Control Our Uteruses
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Men Should Not Control Our Uteruses

If congress bans abortions, will men be required to have vasectomies?

As we all know, Donald Trump is our President-elect. No matter how you feel about it, there's an issue that seriously needs to be talked about, especially in regards to women and their reproductive rights.

Let me just say first, men should not be able to control what women do with their bodies.

Trump plans on repealing Obamacare. I get it, Obamacare does have some crappy aspects (I get that paying over $1,000 for healthcare per year, and for some per month, out of pocket isn't ideal). However, Obamacare has made it possible for many women, even young women under 18, to access birth control at an extremely affordable rate.

A lot of women (including myself), cannot afford to pay $50 a month for birth control (yes, it really can get that expensive), and because of this, we should not be forced into having children before we're ready.

The arguments of "oh, just use a condom," or "just close your legs and be abstinent" are not valid anymore. Condoms fail, even if used correctly. Abstinence works unless someone is violated without consent. Nothing is fool-proof, birth control isn't even 100 percent effective, however it is still the best alternative (when used correctly).

Now, it won't be within the first day Trump is officially in office for this to happen. But it has women freaking out everywhere. Women all over social media even report that they're rushing to get a form of birth control that lasts longer than Trump will be in office, like an IUD.

However, this isn't the only thing that the men of congress want to take away from people who actually have the uteruses in question.


Trump also mentioned he wants to defund Planned Parenthood and overturn Roe v. Wade. While initially in his campaign he wanted to ban abortions completely, he has since retracted his statement and said he'll leave it up to the state to decide the laws and punishments on abortions.

For all you "pro-lifers" out there, I definitely feel you. Most of you voted for Trump because Hillary was totally for late-term abortions, meaning that she wanted abortions to be legal in all 50 states during or after the second trimester.

However, Hillary actually doesn't necessarily support late-term abortions, she only feels that women should have the option if they could justify why. And the "why" really comes to the mother and the baby's health.

Donald Trump made a comment during a debate about how "babies are ripped from the womb during the 9th month," which actually doesn't happen. If a doctor determines a baby is able to live outside of the womb, usually after 24-26 weeks, then the baby will be birthed no problem.

If the mother decides she doesn't see herself fit, she goes through the adoption process right there.

However, 90 percent of abortions take place before 12 weeks, 1.5 percent happen after 20 weeks, and the majority are before 24 weeks. A lot of late-term abortions happen because the mother's health is in danger, or the baby will be born with an abnormality that could leave it in pain for as long as it will survive.

Roe v. Wade even states that abortions should be legal under these circumstances, yet many states make it extremely difficult for a woman to have an abortion even if her health is in danger.

A study shows that women often waited until their second trimester for abortions because they were unsure they were pregnant or could not afford the cost of one, or had to drive three hours or more to their nearest clinic to receive one.

Forty-one states have abortion restrictions currently, and they're changing every so often. Many states have a law stating that women are not allowed to have an abortion after six weeks, when a fetal heartbeat can be detected.

Many women, even those who are ready to be mothers or get pregnant and are able to care for a baby, don't even know they're pregnant until six weeks or later.

Babies are huge responsibilities, and many young women get pregnant during their time away in college. Some get abortions, some don't, but why do people without uteruses get to say what we get to do?

Finding out you're pregnant is a scary thing for someone who isn't ready, and why should the government force women to be ready when they really aren't?

Really though, it comes down to this: if the government wants to make birth control harder to come by, and ban abortions, the least they could do is expand our schools' sex education.

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How The 2016 Election Ruined My Freshman Year

When can we stop fighting?

Freshman year of college is a time to move out of the house, make new friends and share your views in an educated setting. My first semester of college in fall of 2016 was anything but.

I was able to move out of the house and make a few good friends. However, I found that within the college setting sharing opinions and views was not peaceful at all. It was more of yelling and provoking others from opposite political parties.

I figured there was nothing to be done; the 2016 presidential election was completely insane in every way. Scandals on both major sides resulted in mobs of people both defending and insulting each candidate.

I assumed once the election was over, people would eventually calm down. Obviously, I assumed wrong.

After Donald Trump won the Electoral College, but not the popular vote, protests broke out all over campus. It was hard to make any new friends, because it seemed as if instead of asking, "How are you?" people asked, "Who did you vote for?". No matter what you answered, people would be against you.

Many were terrified and upset while others were overjoyed. Protesters protested in the library mall of campus while others criticized them. Hillary supporters would yell at Trump supporters and vice versa.

Protests are a great way to express your opinion, but the tension was so high it made it hard to focus on what I was at college to do: study and learn. It was easy to ignore at first, but it became a distraction having to weave past protesters on my way to class.

Eventually, the crowds cleared but hostility remained. I was beyond frustrated. Acquaintances denounced potential friendships depending on who I voted for or who I didn't vote for.

I heard "I don't respect anyone who voted for ____" from both conservatives and liberals. I did not want to place myself in a category. Everyone was angry at everyone, and there was nothing to be done about it. It finally calmed down for a while but flared up again after Trump's Inauguration.

I honestly was excited for college to share ideas and learn about others' viewpoints, but now I can see that as long as Trump remains president, both sides will continue criticizing each other. If Trump serves all four years, I will be graduating college when he ends his term in office.

My college life started off rocky, and it seems I will not be able to share ideas and differing viewpoints with anyone during this experience in my life without people getting into a screaming match.

College is supposed to be a place where you can make new friends and learn new ideas while being respectful, but this election put a serious block on that in my opinion.

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Five Ways to Remember to Take Your Pill

Because babies aren't fun in college.

I can remember the lyrics to every single middle school jam without fail, yet I still struggle to remember the important things in life, like taking the pill regularly. I've forgotten to take my birth control way too often, even when I was extremely sexually active in a relationship. One, if you forget to take your pill enough times, you could get your period. So, it's possible that if you are lazy af about taking the pill, you can have TWO PERIODS A MONTH. Two periods means double the cramps, double the nausea, and double every other oh-so-lovely part of getting your period. Yeah, no thanks.

And two, BABIES. Don't even get me started on pregnancy scares. I've had more than my fair share of them, and it's just not worth it.

So here are five ways to remember to take your pill.

Schedule a daily reminder on your phone calendar. This is a no-brainer for some people, because the majority of us have our phones glued to us throughout the day. This might not work for some, like myself, who treats the reminder button similarly to their morning alarm's snooze button. My number one frenemy.

Email yourself. Subject line: TAKE PILL!!! NO BABIES!! I'm slightly embarrassed that I use email to keep track of far too many tasks that I have to do. Whatever, it works.

Carry in your backpack. Or satchel/purse/tote/whatever that thing is that you lug around everywhere. This way, it's literally always with you. I keep mine in the front mesh pouch so I have a visual reminder to take it at 12:10 p.m. during lunch or class everyday. Speaking of, taking birth control in public really shouldn't be taboo. You might receive a few funny faces when you whip it out in the middle of lecture, but honestly people should be commending you for taking control of your reproductive health.

Note: It also shouldn't be assumed that everyone who takes the pill is sleeping around, because there are a number of uses for birth control. I've used it at three different points in my life for Accutane, amenorrhea, and yes, now sex.

Keep with your toothbrush. This, of course, is assuming you value your hygiene, which for the sake of everyone around you, I really hope you do. You've already nailed that one down into your daily routine, why not also add the pill?

Keep next to your bed. I used to keep my pill pack next to my bed so that I took it every night before I fell asleep. This way my boyfriend also held me accountable before we did the deed *worry free.*

Here are some other fun facts about your bff bc. If used perfectly, the pill is 99 percent effective, but with "typical use", only 91 percent effective. Each additional missed pill reduces the effectiveness rate. Miss two days in a row and you'll need to use another form of birth control for the next week.

So as a handy reminder, "miss one, make it up. Miss two, back it up." By back it up, we're talking alternative contraception options. I'm lucky that my college provides free Plan B, but I know that's not the case for every campus. There are also other forms of contraceptives out on the market, so figure out what works best for you, and use it. College is stressful enough without having the prospect of a baby on your mind.

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All About My IUD

It's never been so 'in.'

Birth control is a common topic for students. Yes, you should always use condoms, but it's nice to have a safety net in case circumstances prevent condoms from being used successfully (i.e. it breaks, you're too drunk, etc...).

Pregnancy is something that is not extremely appealing to college students (both girls and boys), so why not protect yourself against it temporarily? The most talked-about types of birth control are the pill, the shot, the bar, and the IUD. Every girl has her own preference, and most find one that works the best for her. This is the story of how I found mine.

During the summer leading into my senior year, I decided to get an IUD inserted. A lot of my friends discouraged me from getting an IUD, recommending the pill instead.

But I really didn't like the idea of carrying pills around with me everywhere, having to take them at the same time every day, and remembering to take them in general. I also didn't like that the pill would mess with my period and create side effects like it does for some of my friends.

For some reason, the idea of having a small piece of plastic filled with hormones in my uterus for three years did not phase me. I liked the idea that my gyno could put an IUD in and leave it for a long time before it had to be switched out. There'd be no reason to stress about getting a shot every month or having a scar on my arm. I wouldn't have to worry about becoming pregnant, and I'd feel safe and protected in the bedroom.

I had my appointment that December. It was slightly nerve-wracking, but I trusted that my doctor knew what she was doing. I had never been to the gyno before, so the speculum was a bit terrifying at first. Other than that, the five-minute process was not very painful- just some discomfort and pinching during the actual insertion, but I tried to relax my muscles and mind as much as I could to ease the uncomfortableness. The side effects afterwards were far more annoying.

I've never had such painful cramping and long periods, but both are starting to fade now. I'm supposed to not even get my period at all in the next few months! That's a bonus, but I'm still gonna take pregnancy tests every once in a while, just to be sure.

Over all, I can't complain about my IUD. It works, it's convenient, and I don't even notice that it's there. Sex without a condom is not the smartest thing ever, but if your partner doesn't have an STD, the IUD is reliable for preventing pregnancy. What guy would turn down raw sex? Getting my IUD was a lot easier with my mom by my side. She was very supportive about me going on birth control.

Although I decided I wanted to be on birth control before I was sexually active, she was relieved when I came to her and said that it would be in my best interest to get one ASAP. I recognize that some moms are not as laid-back about their daughters going on birth control, but teenagers and college students have sex, and it's best if it's protected sex. If you're debating getting on birth control, definitely consider getting an IUD. I strongly recommend it!

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Bernie Supporters React to Hillary Endorsement

What does this mean for Bernie fans?

Despite previously stating he would campaign through to the Democratic convention, Bernie Sanders finally threw in the towel yesterday and publicly endorsed Hillary Clinton as the Democratic nominee.

In his thirty minute speech, Sanders pledged, "I intend to do everything I can to make certain she will be the next president of the United States."

As to be expected, given this raucous campaign year, Sanders' decision to back Clinton has been met with widespread, mixed responses.

For many, Bernie's eventual support for Hillary was to be expected. She was leading in delegates and has numerous credentials and experience to her name as former Secretary of State.

One sophomore I interviewed said she began supporting Hillary over Bernie after he lost the state of Ohio in the primaries. "It became clear to me that his chances of winning a general election weren't high enough, especially with an opponent as scary as Trump."


The push to defeat Trump was clearly at the forefront of Sanders' decision to join forces with Clinton. He repeatedly mentioned the need to join together as a party and celebrate the diversity of our country, values he feels Clinton would uphold.

"In these stressful times for our country, this election must be about bringing our people together, not dividing us up. While Donald Trump is busy insulting Mexicans, Muslims, women, African Americans and veterans, Hillary Clinton understands that our diversity is one of our greatest strengths."

However, this choice to form a coalition has left numerous Sanders' supporters feeling betrayed as they took to the Senator's Facebook Campaign Page to voice their concerns and distrust with the Hillary as the nominee.

The decision could potentially backfire on the Democratic party, as many have stated they would prefer to write in Sanders as their nominee rather than vote Trump or Hillary.

"I'm Bernie or Bust... I think people need to vote for something rather than against something," said Marie Clark, a New Hampshire Sanders' supporter.


The amount of time and dedication - both physical and emotional - that individuals had put into backing Sanders was clearly evident. As lamented by Jessica Watrous Boyer of Rhode Island, "You chose her over us.... Truly shocked and saddened by this."

The refusal to vote for Hillary among Democrats isn't universal. As stated by a senior at Oberlin, "I knew this was coming, but I'm still disappointed. I'll definitely vote for Hillary this fall, but I wish that I both trusted and connected with her as I did Sanders. I think doing more research will help."

Current events also play into the decision to research. As stated by another sophomore, "after some of the incidents this year related to gun violence, it became really important to me that my president took a stance for gun control."

As the saying goes, when one door closes another one opens. Now that it's been narrowed down to Trump and Clinton, it's the perfect time to learn more about their agendas and hold them accountable to the current pressing issues that matter most to us going into this election.


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Trump v. Hillary: What Does That Mean For Us?

Trillary Hump would not be trill.

With Sanders' delegate count still trailing, it looks like November will pan out to be a showdown between Trump and Hillary.

So what does this mean for Bernie Sanders' supporters? What does this mean for college students, many of whom feel the prospect of Trump or Hillary is a compounded nightmare in itself ( i.e. this picture)?

Regardless of your views, you have to admit that's pretty terrifying...

When I asked several students (admittedly, mostly liberal) about the implications of a Trump v. Clinton battle sans Sanders, most immediately jumped to discussing a Trump victory.

"Honestly, two things could pan out if Trump wins: either the US is going to go through a VERY rough four years with a crazy and unpredictable President, in which case not only college students, but everyone, will be in trouble, or Trump could actually make a decent President."

A pretty stark contrast. One student flat out said "I refuse to acknowledge Trump."

Harsh words, but also reasonable considering last year even The Huffington Post said they would only be covering Trump as entertainment news, not political: "Our reason is simple: Trump's campaign is a sideshow. We won't take the bait."

Just goes to show how much can happen in a short time! Maybe Sanders still has a chance after all.


Maybe... but not likely. Interestingly, most of the students I interviewed actually supported Hillary over Sanders, differing from the youth norm in this campaign.

"First of all, I love Hillary. People often criticize her but fail to understand many of the weaknesses of Bernie Sanders. He makes empty promises that are neither practical nor possible to deliver... Hillary has more experience and is the best of the options available."

Another student admitted that Clinton's biggest challenge will be "getting college students to show up and vote for her... an area where she has struggled in both this primary and in 2008 against Obama."

The enthusiasm for Sanders has mirrored the youth vote that surged for Obama in 2008, causing some to even request his re-election.

"I voted for Sanders in the primary, and would only vote for Hillary because I don't even want to imagine having Trump as President. Honestly, can we just have Obama for a third term?"


Even if it were constitutional for Obama to run again, he said he wouldn't do it. Can't say I blame the guy.

Will not having an option deter many youth from voting? We consistently have the lowest turnout as a demographic, but this election could be determined by the youth vote - if we decide to show up.

"If students - a demographic that typically supports Democrats - fail to vote in the elections, they will be helping Trump. The stakes are incredibly high, even if Sanders is not in the race."

Keep in mind, this is more than just a vote for the next president. As stated by one student at Sacramento City College, "There's a lot of big issues that are going to be on the ballot, and if you don't vote because you don't like the candidates, then you're leaving a lot of power on the table."

Whether you're a diehard Trump or Hillary fan, or plan to vote for "the lesser of two evils," our vote matters.