Just yesterday, Reich Gesundheitsminister Kathleen Sebelius explained her diktat forcing religious organizations to provide contraception and abortion-inducing drugs this way: “virtually all American women” use contraceptives at some time or other, and “we have a large body of medical evidence showing it has significant benefits for their health, as well as the health of their children.” (“Kathleen Sebelius: Contraception rule respects religion”).
But considering that the purpose of contraception is to prevent the birth of children, I’m not sure what Sebelius has in mind for how it benefits the preventees’ health. Nor do I get how abortion-inducing drugs are beneficial to the health of their users’ children, when the object of the “preventive treatment” is to prevent them surviving.
Okay, I’m being unfairly ironic at Sebelius’s expense when I pretend I don’t know what benefits she has in mind from universal free birth control. I know she means that preventing births protects mommy’s sanity, which makes her a much better mommy to the one or two little skypers she actually wants.
Indeed, Sebelius’s whole explanation expands on her theme that contraception, including “morning-after” drugs that work by getting rid of an already-conceived baby – fall within the broad meaning of “preventive services,” like “Vaccinations for children,” and “cancer screenings for adults.” As a public policy, “pregnancy” thus ranks as a malady on the order of breast cancer or polio, best headed off before it can take hold.
Maybe Komen can come up with a ribbon for that.
Sebelius also wants us to understand that, in addition to being all but universally used by women, birth control is also “very expensive,” a situation that “puts it out of reach for many women whose health plans don't cover it.” Don’t ask how something expensively out of reach is universally used. She may as well be talking about cell phones.
Today, President Obama’s campaign adviser David Axelrod is talking about compromise, in hopes of tempering some of the outrage among (some) Catholics, too many of whom can be counted on to vote for Obama again. Towards this end, the White House now thinks it can strike a balance between the HHS diktat and freedom of religion. Says Axelrod: “We certainly don’t want to abridge anyone’s religious freedoms, so we’re going to look for a way to move forward that both provides women with the preventative care that they need and respects the prerogatives of religious institutions.” (“White House May Look to Compromise on Contraception Decision”).
This captures the whole bent scheme in a few words. “We don’t want to abridge anyone’s religious freedoms”? According to the Supreme Law of the Land, (and no, that isn’t a reference to Roe v. Wade), abridging someone’s religious freedom is prohibited absolutely. Why talk about not wanting to do it unless you believe you can do it if you really wanted to?
The Republic is now facing a situation in which a fundamental First Amendment right is being balanced against – not a comparable fundamental right – and not even a Congressional act – but a decision handed down by an unelected cabinet member.
And now, as I expected it would, the media has finally had time to deploy the stories about the widespread use of birth control by Catholics in spite of Church teaching. Not to mention all the Catholics who “support the contraception mandate generally.” That’s 58% of Catholics, according to the Washington Post’s “On Faith” blog. (“Catholics support White House contraception mandate”).
Really? Do that many informed, practicing (Mass-attending) Catholics actually support the idea that Catholic hospitals should be forced to provide Plan B pills for free? You have to be extra careful when you see numbers like those. The same writer who gave us that number also says this: “While Catholic Church teaching proscribes the use of artificial birth control to avoid conception, 98 percent of Catholics use contraception, according to separate surveys.” If 98% of all Catholics are using contraception, that only leaves 1.5 million who aren’t using it. The 98% also has to include all children, older people, widows, widowers, and most religious and priests.
And speaking of children, are we really supposed to believe that all the babies baptized as Catholics every year are being produced by only 2% of the Catholics not hip enough to be practicing “preventive health care”?
Clearly that 98% is total bullshit. It’s only there to bend your mind.