Keep Birth Control Coverage in All Insurance Plans

I am a Florida Republican, and I disagree with Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Florida). Sen. Rubio said (and his press office published an excerpt):

“This is about whether the government of the United States should have the power to go in and tell a faith-based organization that they have to pay for something that they teach their members shouldn’t be doing.”

I believe in the Affordable Care Act and in the concept of providing a standard for insurance coverage. I believe that insurance coverage should, as a matter of course, provide birth control options. They always cover pregnancy.

When I first got married, I was on The Pill. My husband’s insurance through work didn’t cover it. That really annoyed me.  They covered pregnancy and childbirth. They provided the children with pediatric care. The company offered an individual plan and a family plan, meaning my husband and I paid the same as the guy with a wife and seven kids. Completely unfair.

Pregnancy and childbirth costs thousands of dollars. If you have insurance, the company probably covers a lot of the costs (meaning I pay more for my insurance; even in an individual or couples plan, because I’m a woman, they assume I’ll someday get pregnant). That’s not counting the over-the-counter vitamins, maternity clothes, and baby paraphernalia. Then, you have to pay for the kid for the next 18 years. Or more. Food, clothes, health care (my tax dollars already support the children of thousands of people through state programs like Florida’s HealthyKids), toys, games, cell phones, etcetera, etcetera, and so forth.

The Pill costs less than $30 a month, last I checked.

I’ve spent at least half an hour searching for trustworthy statistics on deaths caused by various methods of birth control vs. deaths caused by complications of pregnancy or childbirth. I can’t find any simple breakdown on a website that I trust not to skew the stats. I found that in 2009, just under a thousand women in the U.S. died from causes related to pregnancy and childbirth (Centers for Disease Control). Worldwide, in 2008, 358,o00 women’s deaths are related to pregnancy or childbirth. (World Health Organization).

Plus, consider this. It’s something no one likes to talk about, but medical advances mean that every year, doctors are saving or prolonging the lives of hundreds, if not thousands, of babies who a hundred years ago would have died. We pussyfoot around because no parent wants to hear that there’s something “wrong” with their child. They’re “differently abled.” They’re “special.” We’re not supposed to talk about “normal” children because being sick or “slow” or unable to walk or talk or feed themselves IS normal for those kids. I feel bad for the parents and the children who live with this. Sometimes the children whose lives are saved do go on to lead normal, productive lives. But to everyone who says that God doesn’t approve of abortions because it’s “killing babies,” how do you know that it’s not God’s will for the premature or genetically defective or physically handicapped baby to die? Because in those cases, it seems perfectly acceptable to use the knowledge and tools developed by science to defy natural selection and biological deficiencies.

By the same token, every Christian woman who has in vitro fertilization or takes a special pill trying to get pregnant is also defying the will of God. Because if He wanted you to have a baby, it would happen naturally.

Back to Sen. Rubio:

“I think the vast majority of Americans, whether on the left or the right, will tell you that the government of the United States should not have the power to be able to go in and tell a church based organization that they must pay for something that that faith teaches their members not to do.”

Sorry, Senator, I guess I’m in the minority, because I think it’s perfectly acceptable to insist that employers and organizations that offer health insurance should have to comply with the new national standards. Because of the low cost of birth control versus the high cost of pregnancy, childbirth, and pediatric care, I don’t think that eliminating birth control options will save these organizations a lot of money. Having the option doesn’t mean having to use the option. Prescription plans cover a plethora of medications for treating a variety of conditions, from acne to varicella-zoster virus. The decision to use those drugs ultimately rests on the patients, because if the doctor prescribes something I choose not to take, I don’t ever have to go to the pharmacy.

Sen. Rubio: “It’s that simple, and if the answer is yes, then this government can reach all kinds of other absurd results.”

An example of extremism and several types of faulty logic, this sort of statement is designed to discourage any kind of free thought. You can almost see the thought process of the senator (or his speech writer): What if some of the people reading this don’t see requiring birth control coverage as a problem? How can we get them on our side? We’ll convince them that if this rule stands, then the very fabric of freedom will be destroyed! That’ll do it!

One of the things that frustrates me so much about Republican politics today is that the arguments are so hypocritical. The Party says government should stay out of our lives. Oh, but gay marriage shouldn’t be legal. Abortion shouldn’t be legal. Don’t waste billions on that high-speed-rail project when you could spend it on mine instead.

I’m grateful for President Obama, because I believe he is doing what is best for America. Things would be even better if Republicans would take their fingers out of their ears, their feet out of their mouths, and start using common sense to make this country a better place for everyone.

About Taminar

When I grow up, I want to make movies and write books. Now in my 50s, I wonder if I'll ever really accomplish the dreams of my youth. I have made two short films, one for a college film-making class, the other for an MTV-sponsored contest. I have written short plays that have been produced, and a few short stories and reviews that have been published. I also perform and direct for community theatre. My working life has included stints in local TV news, public relations, retail management and cashier, and for a couple of years, I made the rides go at Walt Disney World. I have two cats and a husband.
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