While sexually-active people in the United States still rely heavily upon men sticking their penises in colored bags and women finding a way to ovulate as few times a year as possible, Indonesians are working on a new method sure to create a new era of oopsies and panicked mornings-after: a male birth control pill.
Head of Indonesia’s state-run National Family Planning Coordination Board, Sugiri Syarief, says that this baby could be ready to roll at the end of the year, but will more likely be available in early 2012.
The ingredient causing this stir – a shrub called “gandarusa,” which native men on the island of Papua chew the gandarusa leaves as a method of population control. Indonesian scientists have picked up where the natives left off – and are confident that they can move this drug to the next level. Research actually began on gandarusa in 1988 and trials began in the 1990s, said Syarief.
The best part? “There are no side effects,” Syarief says. According to a government study on gandarusa, it acts on an enzyme in sperm that helps them get to and into the ovum. Basically, it demotivates your swimmers.
The underlying reason as to why The West has not come up with a pill seems to be intimately-related to the pharmaceutical industry. For more on that side of things, read Global Post’s article (linked below).
But for Indonesia, population control is the main drive for a new male contraception. “We can’t just give men two choices: vasectomy or condoms,” says Syarief. In Indonesia, the poor do the most procreating, contributing to a 1.3% annual population increase. In order to help the poor – frankly, there needs to be less of them.
Their words, not mine.
Will a male birth control pill be an option in the United States anytime soon? And is American society ready to trust the man with taking a pill?
Sauce: Global Post