“Religious freedom was a founding principle of our republic…We now have unelected agencies of the government bullying the citizenry on a daily basis, even in our most private decisions.”, Susan Bryan, Hendersonville, N.C.
Supreme Court’s Conscience Exception on Abortifacients
Religious freedom was a founding principle of our republic; these three women somehow believe that access to free contraceptives trumps that constitutional right of religious liberty.
Regarding your editorial on the Supreme Court’s Burwell v. Hobby Lobby decision “Religious Liberty Affirmed” (July 1): Nancy Pelosi, Patty Murray and Ruth Bader Ginsburg should all take a step back and rethink their positions on this decision. Religious freedom was a founding principle of our republic; these three women somehow believe that access to free contraceptives trumps that constitutional right of religious liberty. My husband and I provided our own birth control for decades and never considered that we had a “constitutional right” that required an employer or the government to provide it for us. We now have unelected agencies of the government bullying the citizenry on a daily basis, even in our most private decisions.
By the way, I’m surprised we haven’t seen men lining up for their free contraceptive devices under ObamaCare’s birth-control mandate or is this exclusively a women’s prerogative? Is this the start of the “war on men”?
In the U.S., only one class of prescription drugs must be covered by insurers without a copay or deductible. Only one favored group of insureds uses these medications: women. For any other drugs, every insured person must pay a deductible or copay. Isn’t this a “disparate impact,” treating one group differently than another? Where is Eric Holder when we need him? If there is a “war on women,” they seem to be winning it big time.
At the University of Notre Dame in 2009 President Obama promised a “sensible conscience clause” for ObamaCare, yet the White House inserted a mandate crafted by Planned Parenthood to cover abortifacients two years after the health law passed. Hundreds of thousands of citizens, including every Catholic bishop in the U.S., demanded the mandate be rescinded, but to no avail. The Blunt amendment (supported by three Senate Democrats) later tried to restore the two-century conscience protection but failed.
I think it is important to first ask ourselves if we understand the ruling. The fact is it really had nothing to do with contraception but rather with upholding the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (signed into law by President Clinton in ’93). It is also important to note that there are 20 contraceptives offered under the Affordable Care Act, and out of the 20 there were only four that Hobby Lobby objected to because they can cause the abortion of fertilized embryos. So the employees of Hobby Lobby still have 16 contraceptives to choose from.
Glen Ellyn, Ill.
Employers do not belong in the health-care business. Let employers give employees the amount paid on their behalf for health insurance, and let employees choose their own plans. This is possible now that the Affordable Care Act eliminated the pre-existing conditions barrier. Whether individuals want thir insurance to cover birth control and abortion will be between them and their insurance company—as it should be. Eliminating the massive tax breaks associated with the existing system will be an added bonus.
What has corrupted the debate over this issue is that we have abandoned the principle of individual responsibility and have transformed the idea of medical insurance into a concept of free medical care.
Stanley Spatz, M.D.