I've been reading the defense of this policy that drew a swift and sure response from a body of people that normally don't agree on anything, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. This policy declares that the government shall decide which tenets of your faith you may follow and which you must abandon. This policy declares that the government shall tell you the limits of how you shall practice your faith --i.e. you may decide for yourself it is morally wrong, but you must purchase it for your neighbor. If it is morally wrong in my eyes, then it is morally wrong for me to aid and albeit you in an action. This policy declares that it shall deem what is tolerated by the state. Nothing else is permitted. Think I overstate?
Does anyone believe if this is allowed to pass that we shall not be made to provide additional services we deem morally wrong after the election? Like actual abortion? We'll get the same smarmy worthy of a 6th grader line, Don't like an abortion, don't have one. But pay for someone else. That's like saying, don't like drunk drivers? Don't drive drunk. But pay for that chronic alcoholic's next round and hand him the keys.
Having read Sebelius's article in USAToday and others on Real Clear Politics, I wanted to do a bit of fact checking.
From Sebelius: "The religious exemption in the administration's rule is the same as the exemption in Oregon, New York and California. Of the 28 states that currently require contraception to be covered by insurance, eight have no religious exemption at all."
Note: That means 22 states don't require contraception to be covered by insurance and of the 28 that do, 20 have religious exemptions. 42 States don't demand religious organizations violate their core beliefs by purchasing products they deem immoral. That's a fairly solid majority of State policies you're overriding Kathleen via bureaucratic fiat. This is an argument for a sweeping new policy?
I started by wondering, what do the Church institutions in those 8 states do. Do they already violate their stated purpose and the Church's teachings? In some cases, regrettably, yes. And that was the nose of the camel. I began with New York, one of the three states mentioned by Sebelius.
"Indeed, New York passed the Women’s Health and Wellness Act in 2002, requiring health plans to cover contraception and other services aimed at women, including mammography, cervical cancer screenings and bone density exams.
The New York law, which has its own religious exemption, was upheld after several court challenges. In 2007, the U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear the case. At the time, church-related institutions were considering whether to drop prescription drug benefits as a way to circumvent the law."
There IS a religious exemption in New York. How inconvenient a truth. But it's limited. The Diocese of Syracuse schools uses self insurance to get around the prescription benefit issue and is exempt from the law itself.
The states which have no religious exemptions simply have limited religious exemptions that are extremely narrow, and which in most cases require hospitals to provide prescriptions.
That is the end goal.
I haven't discovered why, but I have a pretty good guess.