Wednesday, July 9, 2014
Fresh Perspective on Hobby Lobby Issue
You might be thinking,"So what's new? This was a horrible anti-women SCOTUS decision." Well, this blog concerns discussing/debating the issue with conservative/religious Republicans or anybody else parroting GOP anti-contraception nonsense.
Source: Dailykos.com Here's a digest version of the editorial:
When debating this issue, the core element is mutual responsibility; the fundamental value behind all Judeo-Christian religions. Not personal responsibility.
Those supporting Hobby Lobby might argue,"It's a woman's choice whether she has sex or not. Because it's her choice, I shouldn't pay for it."
But women and men are being "responsible" when they use birth control. They're actively taking responsibility to avoid unwanted pregnancies. What could be more responsible? Get the other person to explain why they view something as "irresponsible."
Compared to Europe, the U.S. has one of the highest rates of unplanned pregnancies largely because we haven't had universal coverage for birth control. And all you have to do is talk about sex as something normal and natural. Are they suggesting people shouldn't have sex? What if they're married?
Ah, but they insist,"why should I have to pay for it?"
The simplest answer is: you don't. Insurance pays for it. We pay for insurance because we believe in mutual responsibility. With the passage of the ACA, we believe in this principle as a country. This is why we are a nation "of the people, by the people, and for the people." In other words, it's not just about you. You reap the benefits, you pay it forward. Any and all health insurance premiums involve a pool of people paying forward for the benefit of the group as a whole. You don't buy a flu policy or a cancer policy.
In a study from 2010 of over 9,000 women in St. Louis, MO, the women were given free FDA-approved birth control for 3 years. The end results were that abortions were less than one third the national average. You might say,"well, there shouldn't have been any abortions if they were doing things correctly." That's as may be, but the fact remains that fewer unwanted pregnancies means fewer abortions. There were only 6.3 births per 1,000 girls aged 15-19 in the study, compared to the national rate of 34.3 births per 1,000 teen girls.
Nearly half the 6 million pregnancies that occur each year are unintended, and about 43% of them end in abortion.
There's no way for religious people to get around the fact that Jesus believed in mutual responsibility. Examples: the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:25-37), dining with Zacchaeus (Luke 19:1-10) and healing the centurion's servant (Matthew 8:5-13).
Other possible questions for discussion:
What part of your religion are you not allowed to practice? If you don't want to use birth control, you are free to not use it. What you are not free to do is impose your religion on others.
What makes your religion better than others?
Why are women held responsible for pregnancy? Isn't it a 50/50 proposition?
Insurance also pays for bypass surgery resulting (partly) from poor dietary habits. It also pays for a motorcycle rider who ends up in a vegetative state from refusing to wear a helmet. It pays for the person who breaks their leg during skiing. As insurance customers, we don't get to say,"I don't want my premiums paying for stupid people or for people leading what I consider is an immoral lifestyle."