Contraception Compromises Continue
Sandra Fluke weighs to this lastest leg of the controversy:
What else has happened? How could the President compromise any more? Its hard to imagine.
WASHINGTON — The Obama administration on Friday proposed yet another compromise to address strenuous objections from religious organizations about a policy requiring health insurance plans to provide free contraceptives, but the change did not end the political furor or legal fight over the issue.
The proposal could expand the number of groups that do not need to pay directly for birth control coverage, encompassing not only churches and other religious organizations, but also some religiously affiliated hospitals, universities and social service agencies. Health insurance companies would pay for the coverage.
The latest proposed change is the third in the last 15 months, all announced on Fridays, as President Obama has struggled to balance women’s rights, health care and religious liberty. Legal experts said the fight could end up in the Supreme Court.
Kathleen Sebelius, the secretary of health and human services, said the proposal would guarantee free coverage of birth control “while respecting religious concerns.”
But Kyle Duncan, the general counsel of the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty in Washington, which is representing employers in eight lawsuits, said the litigation would continue. “Today’s proposed rule does nothing to protect the religious freedom of millions of Americans,” Mr. Duncan said.
One might think that this proposal would silence the whiners. Think again. How many more times is President Obama going to try to compromise with people who simply define compromise as giving them their own way? The only way to silence these people is to totally do away with any birth control being provided as insurance coverage. That just isn’t going to happen.
More from the New York Times explaining how far the president is willing to go:
Under the new proposal, churches and nonprofit religious organizations that object to providing birth control coverage on religious grounds would not have to pay for it.
Female employees could get free contraceptive coverage through a separate plan that would be provided by a health insurer. Institutions objecting to the coverage would not pay for the contraceptives.
Insurance companies would bear the cost of providing the separate coverage, with the possibility of recouping the costs through lower health care expenses resulting in part from fewer births.
It really is time for the lunatic fringe to SDASTFU. Religions must understand that they cannot impose their will on others. This even newer plan simply does not compromise anyone.
Contraception is not open to debate. This is the year 2013. Women will never have equality until they control their own reproduction. Critics might tell women to pay for it themselves. That is fine for middle class women. However, those living on the edge between poverty and being comfortably middle class often find the cost of contraception very much of a burden. With the average rx of birth control pills costing upwards of $50 for a month’s dosage, families can find that $50 going for other things, especially in tight times. How many of us can remember a critical $50 in our lives? Those hard times often come when you are at the height of your reproductive life.
Do we want our employer deciding what medicine we can take or what coverage we can get? What if you work for a Jehova’s Witness. Should that employer be legally deny you blood transfusion coverage? What about a strict Christian Scientist who doesn’t believe in innoculations? Should those be denied? Americans would think those suggestions absurd.
At what point do the religious fanatics need to be told to shove it? Actually, it isn’t all religious fanatics doing the talking. Religious groups like churches were given an exemption in the first place. This is all political and basically ‘anti-Obama’ bitching, moaning and groaning. The religious folks shouldn’t take full blame on this.
Meanwhile, no one is denying anyone their religious rights. No one is forcing anyone to take contraception or pay for contraception. You can be as backward as you want to be. You don’t even have to pay for someone else living in the 21st century. With separate coverage and insurance companies paying, the anti-contraception folks have just run out of road. Now they will just look stupid.
E.J. Dionne has the final word on this compromise in his op-ed.