While many members of the GOP are trying to convince us that we are engaged in a “war against religion”, the truth is that we are engaged in a war against women.
President Obama’s health care plan requires employers who provide insurance to cover birth control with no co-pay. This makes IUDs and birth control pills much more affordable for low income women. The only employer exemption is for churches and other places of worship whose primary purpose is to impart religious beliefs. Religiously affiliated groups, such as hospitals, are not exempt because their primary purpose is to provide health care not to impart religious beliefs. This is what the GOP has called the war against religion. Now, if someone is personally opposed to birth control for religious purposes, there is certainly not going to be any pressure for them to use it. But for a woman who happens to work for a religiously affiliated hospital, her insurance must cover her birth control, if she chooses to use it. Surely we can all understand that controlling how many times and when she gives birth is a priority for all women. Survey after survey has shown that 85 – 89% of Catholic women use or have used birth control, even though the Church prohibits it. A recent survey reported that 98% of Catholic women said birth control is their business, not the business of the church.
GOP hopeful Rick Santorum would like to ban sex education and instruction about contraception from schools. He voted against funding pregnancy prevention programs for teens and voted for the “family cap” and “illegitimacy cap” which would have financially penalized low income women for having too many children and penalized states for children born out of wedlock. How does one justify wanting to financially penalize women for having children, and then promote taking away birth control? He has repeated said that birth control is wrong and should not be “allowed”.
Can’t we all agree that the best way to reduce the number of abortions in this country is to promote sex education and teach teens and young adults how to prevent unwanted pregnancies? I believe we should promote abstinence along with information about pregnancy prevention. Teaching abstinence alone doesn’t work. Sarah Palin promoted abstinence to her children and now has an out of wedlock grandchild. Bristol Palin has said that she was on the pill, but didn’t take it regularly. A little education goes a long way.
This is far from being a war on religion. We are all free to follow any religion we choose, or no religion at all. This is nothing but a blatant attempt by so called religious men to control the lives of all American women.
We won’t allow it.