03 March 2012

Birth Control is Not a Right

So Rush Limbaugh satirized Sandra Fluke, a Georgetown University Law Student, who is advocating in favor of the Obama Administration policy that mandates employers who provide health insurance also provide coverage for contraceptives and abortifacients. I have yet to hear or read Limbaugh's remarks, or Ms. Fluke's for that matter.

What I can say, is that when my wife and I were Ms. Fluke's age, we were also living on graduate student stipends. We took care of our own birth control costs, and never thought to ask the University to help us with them. Because we assumed that birth control was not our right - it was our responsibility. Birth control is considered a right by people whose ideology confuses license with liberty.

On the other hand, the real issue is not graduate students, but the working poor. When you are bringing in such low wages that you have to count pennies, then maybe you do need a little help to make ends meet. Maybe the government should win this one. But Catholic and some other religious institutions have moral objections to birth control. At least let them have a means test, so that they will only be compelled to provide such coverage to those whom they pay wages too low to afford it.

That will at least provide those institutions a way to opt out of providing coverage for birth control by raising the wages of those lowest on the pay scale, and letting them make their own choices as to how to spend their own money.


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