August 23, 2008

Misinformation

Why "The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants" Movie Might Make Young Girls Moms

Okay, so last night I was too tired to do the whole drinking and debauchery thing (because I had done it already that day with my co-workers in the afternoon), so I went to dinner and a movie with a good friend instead. Despite the average age between us being 23, we still chose to see The Sisterhood of The Traveling Pants. Despite the regular cultural insensitivities found in Hollywood (eg. I really don't think Turkish music sounds like that or Turkish dancing looks like what they portrayed), the movie was cute. My friend and I enjoyed it. There was also a lot of eye candy, which was nice.

The problem I had with this movie, however, was that an entire subplot sent the entirely wrong message to young girls who might see this film. It has the potential to give VERY wrong ideas to them about sex and birth control! So, watch out! SPOILERS AHEAD!

Tibi, the NYU film student who is supposed to be all alternative and dark and twisty, has a pregnancy scare after losing her virginity at the reasonably mature age of 19 to her boyfriend of ten months. They even use a condom. The Catch? The condom breaks. Fortunately, however, they realize RIGHT away. I mean, right after the act itself. So, you're asking, WHAT THE FUCKING IS THE PROBLEM? Just go out and get the freakin' morning after pill! You are in New York City, for crying out loud! They definitely have it there! But no, this girl who seemingly has no problem with the concept of birth control never even mentions Plan B. It doesn't occur to Tibi, or for some reason she never articulates, she just doesn't think of it as an option. Instead, she waits for her period of an entire stressful month that sees her so on edge she screws up her summer job and even breaks up with her fabulous boyfriend (before reuniting with him towards the film's end). While this story-line might have worked twenty years ago, it's laughable today....

I don't want young girls to see this movie and think they should act like Tibi. I don't want them to think that PLAN B, for whatever reason, is invisible in this film because it just isn't an option. I don't want them to think that it's something they shouldn't even TRY to get a hold of, something they shouldn't even BOTHER considering. It's a safe over-the-counter drug that has NOTHING to do with abortion. It just increases your already reasonably high chance of NOT conceiving in a given month to 100%.

So, I understand if PLAN B is still too controversial with all those socially conservative morons who don't get why it's not abortion, and therefore featuring it prominently might hurt the box-office revenue of this Hollywood film, but then don't have the pregnancy scare storyline at all! The subplot that unfolded in this film was nothing short of socially irresponsible. It will no doubt probably cause at least a few young girls to wonder when they have pregnancy scares of their own, why DIDN'T Tibi think about Plan B? I guess it's not an option for me, either...This is especially possible in a climate of Abstinence Only Education in the US, where if girls know about Plan B at all, there is a good chance they've been fed bullshit about it being like abortion (which I must emphasize again, it is NOT!),and more bullshit about abortion itself being inherently wrong!

With such poor approaches to pregnancy prevention, those chicks will soon become The Sisterhood of the Maternity Pants! Why must American cinema be so silly? Oh, I guess it's because it's a reflection of American culture and politics, which have become VERY silly, too....

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