As I have not blogged lately I decided to start 2012 off with a low controversy issue. Let’s start off with a few definitions:
Pro-Choice is defined by the Oxford Dictionary as those advocating legalized abortion.
Pro-life is defined by the Oxford Dictionary as those opposing abortion.
Abortion is defined by the Oxford Dictionary as the deliberate termination of a human pregnancy.
Choice is defined by the Oxford Dictionary as a range of possibilities from which one or more may be chosen.
This week the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius issued a statement detailing the requirement that employers are required to provide insurance coverage including contraceptive drugs including abortion drugs.
The rule will require most health insurance plans to cover preventive services for women including recommended contraceptive services without charging a co-pay, co-insurance or a deductible. Beginning August 1, 2012, most new and renewed health plans will be required to cover these services without cost sharing for women across the country.
Nonprofit employers who, based on religious beliefs, do not currently provide contraceptive coverage in their insurance plan, will be provided an additional year, until August 1, 2013, to comply with the new law. This additional year will allow these organizations more time and flexibility to adapt to this new rule.
The entire statement can be found at http://hhs.gov/news/press/2012pres/01/20120120a.html.
If you are a Pro-Life employer you are understandably upset as the rule would require you to pay for something that you oppose on potentially both moral and religious grounds. If you are Pro-Choice I would think that you would be concerned as it is a clear move by the government to do away with Choice. In this rule they are requiring everyone to either obey the law in violation of their personal belief (religious, moral, etc.) or to violate the law and face the consequences. If the issue is truly one for the women whom it impacts — as espoused by Pro-Choice proponents then why is this decision a government issue which requires those who do not agree to pay for that decision.
The issue of pro-choice v. pro-life is one that is so fundamental to most people that a discussion on it will generally end with whether you consider the embryo to be a baby or not. The issue of paying for terminating the life of a baby is not one that should be forced upon anyone or mandated by the government.
The statement by Secretary Sebelius that an additional year will allow these organizations more time and flexibility to adapt to this new rule is ridiculous. Who is the government to give a person or group a year to adapt to a rule that violates their very moral and/or religious beliefs?
For the purpose of this discussion, I don’t care if you are pro-choice or pro-life. This is an issue of pro freedom from government interference in your life. The very thing that pro-choice advocates claim to have fought to achieve they are now conceding and welcoming because they see it as a benefit to them.