Saturday, May 19, 2012

Whose Expense?


I'd like to respond by saying, "No, you can't deny citizens of their religious freedom and pretend it's about women's 'basic rights.' If you like birth control, buy it and use it. Having the right to birth control doesn't mean you can force others to pay for it - especially when they are deeply, morally opposed to it." - CA Rhoades 

Take for example, the right to bear arms. American citizens have the RIGHT to own guns. But does that mean the GOVERNMENT is the one who provides the money for people to access them? Of course not. If you want to own a gun, you go to a shop, get a permit and buy one with your own hard-earned cash. That's your right. 

Lots of folks in our country think guns are terrible things and they believe society would be better off without them. They have a right to believe that! It is THEIR right to oppose guns, just like it's YOUR right to own one. Now, would you ever expect someone who is deeply opposed to guns to pay for yours? Of course not, that would be a ridiculous infringement upon his personal beliefs. 
Compare this scenario with the right to birth control. Catholics are in no way trying to step on a woman's RIGHT to use birth control. She can use birth control all she wants! That's her choice, that's her right. But it's also her expense. Having a right to something does not mean it should be handed to you for free, especially not on the dime of someone who deeply opposes it. 

Like guns? Great, go buy one. That's your right. Don't like guns? Great, don't own one. 
But for the love of sanity, don't force someone who abhors guns to pay for yours. 
The same goes for birth control. 



  1. It's not a free handout when I pay for my insurance and when I pay for my co-pay. Even under the new federal insurance scheme (aka "Obamacare") they are not "free". We pay for them via our insurance charges.

    I probably wouldn't fight for my right to access birth control (as paid for by MY insurance payments - and let me tell you, they aren't cheap), if it wasn't a given that men should have their erectile dysfunction medication covered. There are lots of medical reasons for hormonal birth control apart from preventing pregnancy. There are few, if any, reasons for ED medication that aren't "recreational".

    Take away the right for a man to have sex regardless of his medical condition, and then we can talk about taking away my right to control my body.

  2. I definitely see what you're saying. I mean, we all learned in Econ 101 that there's no such thing as a free lunch! Of course under the Obamacare plan, the cost of birth control is not wiped away. Somebody has to pay the cost. But forcing people who are opposed to birth control (as a means of preventing pregnancy, not when used for medical conditions), to also be included in the payment plan doesn't seem right, does it?

    I wish Obama were more sensitive to just how serious of a moral issue this is for certain groups, such as Catholics. If he were, he could have done a number of things to amend his health bill. He could have written a clause that ACTUALLY exempts religious institutions from participating in insurance plans which offer birth control. Or he could have made it so that employees covered under their insurance plans can have access to birth control IF and only if it is needed for a medical issue, not for preventing pregnancy. Neither of those solutions are perfect, of course, but they at least address the concerns of Catholics in a way that is respectful, rather than just blindly trampling over our beliefs.

    This plan of his is also a terrible idea on an economic level. Like you said, birth control isn't free. Someone has to pay for it. And now he's adding an even greater cost to Americans nationwide, even those who have never, and will never use birth control. Given the current economic climate, it's not a wise choice on his part to be heaping extra costs on top of taxpayers like this.

  3. CA, great article, I love your logic. I want to offer one comment as food for thought. I like the term 'right' has been used rather loosely these days. But I would not claim that women have the right to use contraception. Women don't have the right to have abortions either. Anything the government says is a "right" may or may not be an actually human right, all of which come from God. But I do believe that you already know this. I just think the language can get confused at times when we speak with terms loosely. Because someone could make the case that you believe using contraception is morally legitimate, a "right". Perhaps if you can expound on that, that would help. Tell Rocky i say what's up!

  4. Great post, boy do we need to really pray for our president!

  5. This is in response to Liz’s comment – “There are lots of medical reasons for hormonal birth control apart from preventing pregnancy.” While this may be true you are only treating the symptoms NOT the problem. I encourage anyone who feels they need birth control for medical reasons to visit a NaPro doctor.

    1. The birth control bill was originally created to relieve period symptoms, not stop pregnancy. Do you also have an issue with heart medication, which has been found to cause erections?

  6. Ryan - thanks for your comment! Yes, I am definitely there with you on things like contraception and abortion not being a "right" but I chose to use that word in this post because it's the language of the Obama quote I cited. Discussing the moral ins and outs of contraception is a whole other post in and of itself. But in order to get my point across in this post, I had to stick to the language Obama used for simplicity's sake :)
    And Rocky says what up yourself!

  7. I understand what you are saying, but I think this argument takes you down a slippery slope...

    You say it isn't right to force people opposed to birth control to have to pay into an insurance plan that provides contraception. However, when you pay into an insurance plan--unless the insurance company is a religious organization, too--your money goes to the company for them to use at their discretion. Your money might go to a member's contraception. It might go toward paying someone's salary. It might line the pocket of a fat cat CEO. Quite honestly, you can't know exactly where that money goes. Do you think a religious organization--say a large Catholic school like Notre Dame--researches every single thing about an insurance provider before choosing that provider? Doubtful. The money that its members pay simply goes to the provider and is used for whatever the provider deems important.

    If you think that this is still an issue, however--that your money MIGHT contribute to someone else using birth control--I'd like to bring up a larger issue. We are all, presumably, paying federal taxes. Those federal monies go toward a plethora of things, including education, social programs, and even a war. Now, if I am a pacifist (and I am), what should I do about this? I don't want any of my money going to a war I don't believe in. Should I petition the government to stop taxing me? Do my religious beliefs protect me from paying money that has the potential to be used to kill others?

    The answer, of course, is no--I still must pay my taxes. The benefits of paying taxes--public schools, roads, student loans, etc.--are what I receive for paying into the system. If this isn't enough for me, well, tough. I still have to pay taxes. Similarly, if you pay into an insurance provider, you receive benefits like health care at a lower cost. However, if you don't want to pay into an insurance plan that has the potential for providing contraception to someone else, you DO have the option to pick different insurance. Your religious beliefs and practice can dictate YOUR choice of insurance.


  8. CA your awesome. Thanks.

  9. We live in a pluralistic society. My taxes frequently go to wars I abhor, programs I feel are objectionable, and fund many things that I find morally questionable. But I don't get to decide for the entire nation what our laws or policy will be on the basis of my beliefs, because we have a representative system of government that requires that we be bigger than any one constituency.

    Personally, I'm glad that my daughter will not have to consult the Catholic Church before making healthcare decisions, but I certainly support the right of the vocal minority of Catholics who hold this hardline position to make their case against common sense as best they can and see how many are persuaded. Then, when a majority of our elected representatives vote for Catholic teaching to become law, I'll have no problem with it. Best of luck.

  10. I love this! I also disagree that birth control is a 'basic right'.

  11. it does seam right, yo have no right to deny sombody there basic needs because you are opposed, obama didnt make it so its "free' he just made it so its required in insurence plans, just like it should be. you cant force your religion on people who have there own belifes, you dont like birth control dont use it, but that doesnt mean you can exempt it from your employees insurence policy that they paid for

  12. The thing about this though is that your tax dollars are paying for things like Viagra and penis pumps in Medicare, and there is no commotion about that. Yet when women wish to use birth control, often for medical reasons or because their bodies/incomes cannot afford to have a child, there is a riot.


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