The incendiary organizer behind the ‘Unplanned Pregnancy March’ finally agreed to an interview to discuss her motivations. The first march she hosted in Philadelphia was a fantastic success, boasting close to a thousand women, most of them in various stages of their different trimesters, i.e. pregnant. Besides water, an eclectic assortment of foods was made available to the women as they marched. Dill pickles, jalapeño bagels drizzled with caramelized onions, and Sour Patch Kids were catered in abundance to satiate the pregnant women’s bizarre and inexplicable dietary cravings. As the marchers ate they chanted phrases to the effect of “Birth control is shady! We don’t want these babies!”
The Unplanned Pregnancy March was spurred ahead by Marsha Yustic, 41, a self-described pro-choice feminist whom holds a Master’s in Statistics from the University of Pennsylvania. In her interview, Yustic declared, “The companies selling birth control have lied to the public. Their lies affect anyone who’s having sex and using a contraceptive method.”
“It’s basic probability,” Yustic explained. “Planned Parenthood’s website puts the pill’s real-life effectiveness at 91%. That’s calculated using the ‘Pearl Index’. But the 91% that companies and their sources report is false. Percentages calculated based on the Pearl Index are like rolling a hundred different six-sided die at once and recording their results. The results from those hundred different die may show that overall there’s a one in six chance you roll a three. But, as any cee-lo expert will tell you, that 1/6 probability completely changes when you try to roll the number three two times in a row.”
Noticing her interviewer was confused, Yustic explained further. “If you’re on the pill, there’s probably a 91% chance you won’t get pregnant any singular time you have sex. But when you want to be not pregnant twice in row, your odds change. Using a basic principle of probability, that first-time sex’s 91% chance decreases to [an] 82.81% [chance of not getting pregnant] for second-time sex. And then that chance goes down to 75.36% for third-time sex. It’s crazy. If you’re on the pill and have sex 100 times in one year, which is a conservative estimate for horny teens or a new couple of almost any age, the odds of you not getting pregnant 100 times in a row are 00.00802%. That’s if he’s ejaculating inside you, of course. I don’t know how these companies have gotten away with their lies. And as a statistician, I don’t get why these probabilities apply to a Fire Bet in craps in any given casino but not to contraceptive marketing.”
Therefore and thus, the Unplanned Pregnancy March was born. That first march in Philadelphia inspired more marches in Cincinnati, New York City, and Los Angeles. Companies that specialize in contraception like Trojan and Allergan (the creator of birth control pill Lo Loestrin® Fe) grew worried, sending out tweets to remind their buyers how to properly put on a condom. They also tweeted suggestions that help women take the pill at the same time every day, like cell phone alarms and paranoid boyfriends. Yustic urged unwillingly pregnant women to call these companies’ executive offices as often as possible and voice their grievances. “Tell them why you’re pregnant, and tell them it’s their fault!” she shouted at one of the demonstrations. Then, much to contraceptive companies’ relief, Wilhelmina Jot stepped forward to correct Marsha Yustic’s statistical miscalculations.
Jot, 43, has a PhD in Statistics from Brown University. She called Yustic’s conclusions on birth control’s probabilities “well-intentioned hogwash.” Attempting to bring her findings into the public eye, Jot announced on CNN that “The Pearl Index of a particular birth control’s effectiveness is calculated from case studies of one hundred couples over the course of a year. The 91% effectiveness figure Marsha Yustic is criticizing is calculated from the unwanted pregnancies that occur in those one hundred couples having consistent sex for one full year. The 91% is not calculated on a one-time-sex to one-time-sex basis. The contraceptive companies are telling the truth.”
Out of gratitude for her factual defense, Trojan sent Jot enough free condoms to last the rest of her life. However, Jot’s efforts to dispel Yustic’s false facts with the truth had little to no effect on the Unplanned Pregnancy Marchers’ commitment to their cause. With their momentum already at a fever pitch, Yustic and her hordes of pregnant women continued to seek justice, marching and vomiting from morning sickness in city streets across the country.
In a follow-up interview to hear Yustic’s comment on Jot’s data, Yustic said, “Jot may be right. I may be right. Who knows? What nobody can deny is there’s millions of women using one form of contraception or another, and thousands of them are having unplanned pregnancies. Facts aside, are we as a nation going to sit back and allow corporations to get away with lying to us? Never!” Yustic raised her fist and put her other arm around a pregnant teen whose stomach was just barely showing. She then turned around to lead a crowd in chanting “False percentages / fertilized our eggs!”
Eventually admitting defeat in the face of national unrest, Allergan, Trojan, and even the barely-purchased Lifestyle condom company released a series of abortion coupons in an agreement with Planned Parenthood. Yustic was overjoyed. “These coupons give significant discounts on abortions,” she said. “Now these women and girls can get the abortions they deserved all along. As a matter of fact, I’m gonna go get an abortion myself. I think I’ve earned it. Thanks to me, it’s affordable and in vogue.” Yustic tossed what looked like a daily birth control pill wheel into a trashcan right after she’d said her goodbyes to the interviewers, shouting, “We are the nine percent!” into the horizon.