Birth Control, Catholic Employees and Cut The Crap

For crying out loud … Christian hysterics across the land are wringing their hands because they might be required to provide access to contraception under the health insurance offered to their employees. They had a one year exemption to figure it out and now they are crying “religious persecution” and typical bullshit.

From Feministing:

President Obama has made it clear that he supports women’s access to contraception and it is a part of the health reform law for a reason. It’s clear that the Catholic groups are out of touch with actual Catholics who overwhelmingly support the new provision and access to contraception. The one year grace period was built in to allow for a smooth transition. Don’t be distracted by all the kicking and screaming religious groups are doing since last month’s announcement, seriously everyone…take a breath. The meaning of Axelrod’s quote may not have been crystal clear but the end result is the administration is holding firm to the original position: access to contraception for all women.

Listen …it is not new.

In reality, the mandate is modeled on existing rules in six statesexempts houses of worship and other religious nonprofits that primarily employ and serve people of faith, and offers employers a transitional period of one year to determine how best to comply with the rule.

It’s also nothing new. Twenty-eight states already require organizations that offer prescription insurance to cover contraception and since 98 percent of Catholic women use birth control, many Catholic institutions offer the benefit to their employees. For instance, a Georgetown University spokesperson told ThinkProgress yesterday that employees “have access to health insurance plans offered and designed by national providers to a national pool. These plans include coverage for birth control.”

Similarly, an informal survey conducted by Our Sunday Visitor found that many Catholic colleges have purchased insurance plans that provide contraception benefits

Listen again … I worked for the Catholic Church in 1995 and 1996 as a lay employee for a Catholic mission group (nuns.) We had health insurance and I was able to get birth control without a problem. Yes, I was having sex at the ripe old age of 25 while Catholic. Look how that turned out. Oh …

There are plenty of exemptions, there are consequences to being in business as a faith based organization and this is so not a big deal. Except for women whose lives depend upon their ability to make their OWN choices with regard to their reproductive health.

Here’s a thoughtful post from Ms. by the daughter of a Catholic employee who had to make sure her daughters had good reproductive health choices out of her own pocket.