What the Contraception Debate is Really About

Mike Luckovich of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution explains:



About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the editor of Friendly Atheist, appears on the Atheist Voice channel on YouTube, and co-hosts the uniquely-named Friendly Atheist Podcast. You can read much more about him here.

  • http://chaoskeptic.blogspot.com Rev. Ouabache

    I expect to hear great wailing and gnashing of teeth over this one. Their letter to the editor page will be interesting for the next week or so.

    • StarStuff

      Pearl clutching onto the fainting couch.

  • gski

    I don’t know if I agree.  Contraception appears to control women because they have the greater burden regarding children.  But really, contraception controls both partners, to the extent that the male lives up to his responsibilities.  It seems that because reproduction is one of the natural drives, society is controlled to that extent.  Also it is a kind of test case, if those that which to control fail to do so, they lose a tremendous amount of power, which is what I think is the real issue.

    • Ibis3

      Even if men “live up to their responsibilities”, financially (rare) and
      otherwise (rarer still), it’s still women who have to be pregnant for nine months,
      give birth (still a dangerous process), breastfeed for about a year more.

      Controlling contraception controls a woman’s right to do what she wants with her own body. If it is unavailable, she can not have sex whenever she wants with whomever she wants without risking getting pregnant. Assuming limited access to abortion (even merely through sentiment and social stigma) as well, this interferes directly with a woman’s health, her finances, her education or career, prospects for future relationships with men etc. etc. It is the foundation upon which the freedoms women currently have and the ones they hope to gain are resting. With it we can be equal members of society, without it, all we can ever be are second-class citizens. That’s where the religious want us–under the thumb of men, treated as chattel, punished if we are “impure” or otherwise stray from the course laid out by their gods.

      • Patterrssonn

        You’d think this was a no-brainer

      • amycas

         It also directly interferes with her healthcare if she’s taking the birth control for other medical reasons, which, the majority of women do.

  • Miko

    This claim really doesn’t make any sense.

    Firstly, seeing as religious conservatives aren’t typically very good liars, it seems unlikely that they’d spend so much making “pro-life” arguments if they were actually only interested in controlling women. Secondly and more importantly, controlling access to contraception seems needless complicated if the goal is to control women.  Contraception is available from many sources and in many forms and so is hard to block.  On the other hand, mammograms require expensive equipment that is only available in a few centralized locations.  If the goal were really to control women (rather than the stated “pro-life” goals), it could be achieved much more efficiently by restricting access to mammograms rather than by restricting access to contraception.

    Not being religious or a conservative, I don’t approve of their “pro-life” goals, naturally. But I fail to see the benefit of pretending that their goals are something that they clearly aren’t.

    • Baby_Raptor

      Couple things you don’t take into consideration:

      1) The fact that this is largely based in religious arguments, and the religious texts are all about controlling women.

      2) Contraception being “widely available” is up for debate. And even if it is, they’re trying to make sure that doesn’t get used, either by passing laws that sneakily ban it or refusing education on the matter.

      3) The ways some of these laws treat women…Forced ultrasounds to make sure a woman understands that she’s pregnant, laws allowing doctors to straight up lie to patients if it might affect her decision…Those aren’t for the woman’s good, or for the fetus’. They’re just about control. 

    • Pen

      The primary purpose of most religions is societal control. The primary ways to do that are by controlling access to food and access to reproduction. Look at any deeply religious society and tell me, if that wen’t the case, why do they all demand such strict adherence to their own interpretation of sexual morality and modesty? Why do so many of them minimize the influence and independence of their female populations?

      This isn’t just restricted to humans either, it’s something nearly all primates do to one extent or another.

    • Kevin S.

      Since when are religious conservatives typically not good liars?

    • amycas

       They wouldn’t restrict access to mamograms, because those are for detecting breast cancer, and women need breasts to feed their many babies. Birth control access specifically allows women control over their sexuality.

  • Andrew Morgan

    The #1 reason I hate politics is because differences of opinion are never ascribed to the fact that reasonable people might disagree about policy but rather that your opponents harbor some hidden nefarious plot and their opinions are immediately out of bounds.

    “Oh, you want to ensure that women everywhere have convenient, cheap-or-free access to X,Y, and Z, no matter their age?  That’s just because you have a desire to see American society remade into the feminist vision you have in your head.”

    “Oh, you want to restrict access to contraception even though the government routinely requires people to provide services they find objectionable?  Well, you must be a religious nutjob that can’t bear to see women successful in life.”

    One of these days I will hear a public official say “I think my opponents and I just disagree on what the role of government is in this context” and my mind will explode.

    • Coyotenose

       Often that’s true, but we have centuries of evidence that these people are following a philosophy that is quite overt about controlling women. Few of them consciously realize this, thanks to the magic of compartmentalization, but it is still what is occurring.

  • Cortex_Returns

    Hey, this isn’t about atheism! More Feminist Agenda taking over this blog that was only ever supposed to be about friendship and atheism!

    • amycas

      lol, yeah, and it’s also only supposed to be authored by Hemant Mehta! Who are all these other authors on the other posts?!

  • Nordog

    The only real debate in America about the Catholic Church and contraception is whether or not the government can force the Church to pay for someone else’s contraception.

    Actually, the debate is of even more broad a scope than that: Can the federal government force anyone to participate in a given economic activity?

    I predict that with the SCOTUS finally rules on the individual mandate in ObamaCare the mandate will be found unconsitutional.

    A more apt cartoon would have Obama confessing to the priest, “The HHS contraception mandate is about controlling the Church.”

    • Hippychik

      The church isn’t paying for anything. The insurance cimpanies have to pay for it.

      • Miss_Beara

        These people tend to say things like “the taxpayer/church shouldn’t have to pay for sexually promiscuous women!” completely ignoring the fact that the taxpayers/church pay for nothing. Purposefully ignorant perhaps? All that is, is shaming women for their sexuality.

        I am sick and fucking tired of the assaults by the religious right and the Catholic church on women’s reproductive rights. It is completely about wanting to control women. Our bodies are no one else’s but our own. 

        Many women take contraception for other health issues. Of course these people do not care whatsoever about that. 

        • Nordog6561

          “I am sick and fucking tired of the assaults by the religious right and the Catholic church on women’s reproductive rights.”

          No, you’re just sick.  It is a sickness born of your bigotry.

          Taxpayers/church pay for nothing?  That IS the type of statement that issues from a fevered mind.

          Assault on reproductive rights?  Really?  If you want condoms, birth control pills, abortions, you are free to buy them.

          Only in the sick twisted mind of a narcissistic bigot does my refusal to pay for your sterile sex products and services equate to an assault.

          Talk about victim complex.

          • Miss_Beara

            “No, you’re just sick.  It is a sickness born of your bigotry.”

            “Taxpayers/church pay for nothing?  That IS the type of statement that issues from a fevered mind.”

            LOL. So now I am a bigot and have a “fevered mind” because I am tired of attacks on women’s reproductive rights? I guess you are not paying attention to what is happening in Kansas, Arizona and other states.

            You can believe whatever the heck you want. You have shown in plenty of posts that you have a problem with women, their sexuality and their reproductive choices.

            You also do not seem to care that plenty of women use the pill for other conditions. But you and many others see it as “sterile sex products” which is complete ignorance.

            You can believe all you want that the church/taxpayers pay for contraception. Doesn’t make it true. 

            • Nordog6561

              No, you’re not a bigot because you are tired of attacks on women’s reproductive rights.  You’re a bigot because you think refusing to pay for your contraception is an attack on a woman’s reproductive rights.

              It doesn’t help you that you are ignorant of the fact that the Church does not have a problem with prescriptions of contraceptive drugs for non-contraceptive uses.  So yes, this isn’t about an attack, it isn’t about the Church standing in the way of non-contraceptive usage of contraceptive drugs.

              It is about sterile sex supplies and abortion for when those supplies fail in their purpose.

              It is about your hysterical and paranoid bigotry that sees the Church as an assailant because it refuses to pay for your sterile sex supplies.

              It doesn’t matter that you may not like the term “sterile sex supplies” but that IS what we are talking about, id est contraceptives qua contraceptives and NOT as used for some other purpose.

              “You have shown in plenty of posts that you have a problem with women, their sexuality and their reproductive choices.”

              This is a bald faced lie.  Though I do have a problem with abortion which you likely like to dress up all pretty with the euphamism “reproductive choices.”  Abortion is not a reproductive choice.  It is the killing a human child.

              “You can believe all you want that the church/taxpayers pay for contraception. Doesn’t make it true.”

              You can believe all you want about picking condoms from the condom tree while riding your unicorn up on the Big Rock Candy Mountain.  Doesn’t make it true.

              But in a way you are right.  As of today the Church is not paying for contraception.  And when the SCOTUS sends ObamaCare and the individual mandate to the shit hole in which it belongs, no one will be forced to do so.

              Any wagers on the SCOTUS vote?  I’m on record for an at least 6 to 3 vote against ObamaCare.  And then you will still be right: The Church will not be paying for contraceptives.

              • amycas

                 “sterile sex supplies”

                you do realize that the majority of women use the b/c pill for medical reasons other than birth control, right? That means, it doesn’t qualify as “sex supplies.” Seriously, you’re acting like we’re making you pay for vibrators and sex-swings or something. Don’t be ridiculous.

          • amycas

             “If you want condoms, birth control pills, abortions, you are free to buy them.”

            I’m not free to buy them. I work part time so I don’t qualify for my job’s health insurance and I can’t get private insurance because it’s too expensive. I’m a student, but I just switched to a community college and they don’t have a comprehensive health system like the university did. The cheapest birth control I can get right now is condoms, so that’s what I use. I really need the b/c pills for birth control and other medical reasons, but I can’t afford them. Even if I had health insurance, if it didn’t cover b/c pills I wouldn’t be able to afford them.

            Oh and btw, you’re taxes are already paying for b/c pills. I used to be under my dad’s insurance. He works for the government and gets insurance through the government, and my b/c pills were paid for through that. They also pay for medically needed abortions.

            Also, b/c pills are not “sterile sex products.” Holy crap, you need to go learn something about women’s health.

            • Nordog6561

              “Oh and btw, you’re taxes are already paying for b/c pills. I used to be under my dad’s insurance. He works for the government and gets insurance through the government, and my b/c pills were paid for through that. They also pay for medically needed abortions.

              Also, b/c pills are not “sterile sex products.” Holy crap, you need to go learn something about women’s health.”

              To the first point here I would say, “So what?  Taxes pay for many things many people don’t like.  That’s still different from the government telling my what I must buy with my own money.  It is the demented liberal mind that decides that since it cannot discern between tax revenues and personal wealth that everything must be considered either belonging to the governement or subsidized by the government.

              To the second point, b/c pills, when used a b/c pills are by defiinition sterile sex supplies.  Holy crap, you need to learn something about word meanings and reality.

        • amycas

           It also ignores the fact that maybe I DO want to help pay for women’s birth-control and I feel the most efficient way for me to do that is to have some of my tax money go toward women’s health care vie insurance subsidies or places like Planned Parenthood.

    • Baby_Raptor

      There’s plenty of Constitutional precedence for the mandate. 

      And your comparison is laughable. Are you projecting or just letting your martyr complex show?

      • Nordog

        “There’s plenty of Constitutional precedence for the mandate.”

        Actually, that’s absolutely false.  Never in the history of the country has the federal government mandated that private citizens must enter into contracts with other private concerns.

        There is no precedence for that.

        • MV

          Exactly why does it matter that the mandate is with a private party?  The government mandates that citizens do many things that have economic cost.  For instance, if I have a job, I pay SS/medicare/medicaid taxes.  No choice there.

          States mandate proof of financial responsibility when operating cars (aka, insurance for most people).  Yes, it’s not the federal government but I don’t see why that makes a significant difference. 

          Finally, no one is required to buy health insurance.  You can choose to pay a tax instead.  And if you want to use the argument that my examples are limited, so is the insurance “mandate”. It only applies to the portions of the population who are under age 65 and not “poor”.

          • amycas

             It’s also a mandate that is being incorporated into the pre-existing regulatory framework for health care (which is a broadly followed guideline for introducing regulations for interstate commerce). Health care was determined decades ago to be interstate commerce and could therefore be regulated by the federal government.

            • Nordog6561

              Health care is interstate commerce, though it is ironic that laws preventing the purchasing of health care insurance across state lines means that health care insurance is NOT interstate commerce.

              But let’s let that slide for now and consider health care insurance to be insteratate commerce.

              The mandate is focused on those who do not buy health insurance.

              In other words, the interstate commerce clause is being invoked for non-activity.

              By virtue of NOT participating in commerce you, (YOU, not your activity, but YOU) fall under the commerce clause.

              These are not hard distinctions here.  I would think the brightest among us could pick up on that.

              • amycas

                Health care is interstate commerce, because health care crosses state lines (such as your pharmaceuticals and other medical supplies).

                “The mandate is focused on those who do not buy health insurance.”

                Yeah, and the car insurance mandate is focused on those who do not buy car insurance. Who’dathunkit?

                “By virtue of NOT participating in commerce you, (YOU, not your activity, but YOU) fall under the commerce clause.”

                Don’t be disingenuous. Everybody uses health care, even if they don’t buy health insurance. The problem is that %99 of those who use health care without insurance can’t pay for it. So the mandate is for those who use medical care, but then don’t (usually can’t) pay for it. If they buy health insurance, then they are paying into the system.

                Also, people with health insurance are more likely to go to the doctor when problems first arise instead of waiting until it’s too late. That means diseases and cancers are detected early. Early detection saves costs and time in the long run. It also means that people are healthier. Healthier people don’t need to go to the doctor as often, so they can spend their money on goods (which helps the economy) instead of on another doctor’s visit. Healthier people don’t miss work or school as often, so they are more productive. This is why most companies already include preventative healthcare (including the b/c pill for women) in their employee insurance policies.

                All of this could be solved of course if we just had single payer. Everybody pays into the same system through taxes and then everybody is covered. If you have more money and wish to buy supplemental coverage then you can (a la the British system). Same healthcare, roughly the same costs, and nobody goes bankrupt from a broken arm.

    • http://twitter.com/Buffy2q Buffy

       The federal government forces us to subsidize the Catholic Church, along with every other church in this country.  These churches don’t pay any taxes of any sort so the rest of us foot the bill.   Furthermore whenever they run an organization like a group home, an adoption agency or a shelter for homeless people they get piles of taxpayer funding.  It’s about time they all stop screeching about what “their” money is spent on as most of it isn’t “their” money at all. 

      • Nordog

        Buffy, I don’t know what your political leanings are.

        Yet, your statement here fits well with a far left view of property.  Id est, it belongs to the governement first.

        Money directly subsidizing shelters, homes, etc. are done under a contractual basis with non-profit entities, many of which are churches.  These are contracts to provied a service.

        The tax exempt status of churches on the other hand is a case in which churches keep money that is already theirs.  The mind set that holds that keeping your own money is a subsidy from the governement is a leftist socialist mindset.

        And of course we all know that the problem with leftism is sooner or later you run out of other people’s money.

        In any event, there are two inter related issues here:

        1) The individual mandate in general
        2) The HHS contraceptive mandate

        Now I know many atheists hate the church and so they love the idea that “the man” is sticking it to the church with the HHS mandate.

        Yet, this is a shortsighted view to take.

        The unprecedented action of forcing individual private citizens, EVEN atheist citizens, to purchase a product or service with their own money against their will is completely unconstitutional.

        The constitution enumerates the powers of the federal governement specifically, and limits those powers purposely.

        The role of the consitution is to give the government enough power to function, but no more.

        If the mandate stands (I predict it will not; at least a 6 to 3 vote against at SCOTUS) then there really is no limit on the federal government and what it can tell private citizens they can do in their private lives.

        As I’ve said before, American atheists should be very frightened of such power.  After all, atheists are far outnumbered.  Do you really want a governement with unchecked power to make life a shit hole for minorities, or those who just happened to be unpopluar at the moment?

        That’s what the mandate does.

        The Catholic Church’s fight against the mandate is really doing atheists a favor.  But too many atheists hate the Church and especially hate the Church’s take on contraception.  So these people let their schadenfreude cloud their view of the situation.

        • MV

           The government already has a history of making the country an unpleasant place for minorities throughout its history.  It did it with the help of the churches.  And with Libertarian ideals (we really did have limited federal government prior to WW2).  Improvements came when the power of the federal government increased and Libertarian ideals waned.

        • http://twitter.com/Buffy2q Buffy

           The Catholic fight against the mandate isn’t doing anybody a favor.  It’s only serving to provide religious organizations more privilege–as if they need it.  They want the right to arbitrarily use their “religious beliefs” to disobey laws secular organizations and businesses must follow.  Their employees are the ones who get shafted.

          Whether we like it or not, our system is set up so that unless we’re independently wealthy we have to get our insurance through our employer.  Now religious zealots want to use their religious whims to put barriers in place.  Of course they won’t give up any of the taxpayer funding they’re getting from the very people they’re harming with their policies.

          You whine about the prospect about a government with “unchecked power” but you’re supporting the prospect of religious groups and individuals with unchecked power.   How is that any better? 

          Say my organization is taken over by a Catholic group.  Next thing I know the hormonal contraceptives I take to control my debilitating cramps are no longer covered under my health insurance, and I can’t cover my wife under my policy because that would violate my employers “religious beliefs”.   Or say I move and have to get a new job.  I search for months and finally get one–but the boss is a Christian Scientist.  His beliefs say that you should pray for God to heal you so if you want humans to help you then you must pay for that yourself because it would violate the boss’ religious beliefs to force him to pay for health insurance for his employees. 

          Do we let Scientologists refuse to cover mental health services?  Do we allow employers to refuse coverage to gay people entirely because their religion says gay people are sinners?  What about someone who says he’ll pay for a clergy person to pray or even do an exorcism but nothing else because sickness is caused by demons? 

          Where do we draw the line on peoples “religious beliefs” being allowed to dictate what health care employees will be provided access to under company insurance plans? And why should employees be held hostage to the religious whims of their employers? 

          All we’re asking is that when religious groups choose to operate businesses or organizations, which involves taking secular tax money and hiring secular employees, that they obey the same laws that other organizations and businesses are subject to. It’s a matter of consistency and fairness to all.  

          • Nordog

            “The Catholic fight against the mandate isn’t doing anybody a favor.  It’s only serving to provide religious organizations more privilege–as if they need it.  They want the right to arbitrarily use their “religious beliefs” to disobey laws secular organizations and businesses must follow.  Their employees are the ones who get shafted.”

            But, in your bigotry against the Church you miss the larger point.  You mention secular laws organizations and business must follow.  The point is that, constitutionally speaking, the federal governement at the national level in the USA has no business telling seculuar or sectarian organizatons and business that they MUST provide health care or otherwise purchase a product.

            In what must only be some type of fevered ecclesiaphobia, you wrote, “…but you’re supporting the prospect of religious groups and individuals with unchecked power.”

            That’s just crazy talk.

            Let’s put it this way…

            There are many posts here at this blog about the Freedom From Religion Foundation.  I typically don’t read those postings; I’m just not interested.

            However, it has been my presumption that the organization holds as a principle that “freedom of religion” must necessarily include the freedom to have no religion.  Thus, Freedom FROM Religion.

            Personally this position makes perfect sense to me.  To be free, especially in matters of faith, it is necessary to be free to live a life without faith and without state coercion regarding the lack of faith.

            Yet, the individual mandate is an attack on personal freedom.  But it is important to note that this particular attack is on all people.  It simply is not the case that U. S. constitutional law allows for such an over reach of national federal power.

            I predict, again, at least 6 votes against the mandate when SCOTUS finally rules.  I will not be surprise if even Kagan and the Wise Latina vote against it and there’s a unanimous vote.

            But back to FFRF.

            An attack on the freedom of religion, as the HHS contraceptive mandate most certainly is, is by necessity an attack on freedom FROM religion.

            While I’m not surprised that some people (like you apparently) are too busy enjoying the Church being under the gun so to speak, I would think that the FFRF would see this as a problem for atheists as well.

            One group for whom this attack is not a problem is comprised of those individuals who don’t like Amercian constitutionalism and have no problem seeing it gutted.

            Others just see it as an opportunity to publish fatuous cartoons.

            In the end ObamaCare is going down anyway.

            • http://twitter.com/Buffy2q Buffy

              The problem is that in your attempt to see this as OMG RELIGION HATERS!!!   WE’RE SOOOOOOO PERSECUTED!!!! You’re missing the point. 

              Nobody is attacking religion or religious people/groups.  They’re merely asking religious *businesses* and *organizations* to follow the same rules and regulations every other business and organization must follow.  Instead religious organizations want to demand special rights, thereby denying that “religious freedom” you hold so precious, for everyone but themselves.   If the Catholic Church can deny me or at the very least put in place barriers to anything of which they disapprove, *my* religious freedoms are being denied. 

              You seem to  think “my religious beliefs” should be an anything-goes exemption to allow people to disobey any law they choose.  How does that protect anybody’s freedom except the person who is wielding it–against everybody else?  And what does it lead to, except chaos? 

              As to “Obamacare”, I’d much rather have a single-payer system like Medicare funded by our tax dollars.  Then we wouldn’t have to worry about all of this garbage with employers trying to deny us access based on their arbitrary whims, or losing coverage if we change jobs/become unemployed.  We also wouldn’t have to worry about people being denied insurance because they actually will use it (i.e., “pre-existing conditions”).    It’s outrageous that in a so-called first-world nation we still have such a backwards means of getting health care to our citizens.   

              But we have what we have.  And our government forces us to pay taxes.  It makes us subsidize churches to the tune of 71 billion dollars per year ( http://bit.ly/KHPxBW) .  It can put us (at least our men) in uniform and send us overseas to kill and be killed.  It can take our land from us through “imminent domain”.  It can stick us in prisons for life.   So in the grand scheme of things the idea of having us buy health insurance really isn’t all that outrageous. 

              • Nordog

                “They’re merely asking religious *businesses* and *organizations* to follow the same rules and regulations every other business and organization must follow.”

                You have a tenuous grasp of reality, at best.  Three examples demonstrating this tenuous grasp (but not limited to these) are…

                First, “They’re” not asking.  It is not a request.  It is a mandate.

                Second, “[T]he same rules” as you properly call them are not precedented.  You act as if this is something that has been going on for some time and we just now have gotten around to including Chruches.  Not so.  The individual mandate of ObamaCare is new, it is unconstitutional, and it is necessarily tyrannical for all citizens.

                Third,  I’m not crying out or whining about persecution.  I’m trying to get you and others to see how this is bad for YOU.

                Fourth, “If the Catholic Church can deny me or at the very least put in place barriers to anything of which they disapprove, *my* religious freedoms are being denied. ”  And just exactly how is the Catholic Churc doing that?  Patrolling the condum aisle at Rite Aid pharmacy?  This is paranoia at its finest.  Evidently you are one of those whacked out soicialist liberals who has such a grandious sense of entitlement that you cry “oppression” when ever someone refuses to buy you what you think you need.

                Fifth, the last paragraph of your last post is apparently offered as justification for the mandate.  You see a justification, I see the slippery slope we’ve been sliding down for years.  You see a good thing.  I see a progressive and effective assault on limited representational governement.

                Why don’t you just admit it.  You don’t like the American system of consitutional representative government and want the government to provide for you from womb to tomb.

                You’re like that cartoon character “Julia” from Obama’s PowerPoint presentation.  You’re married to the state.

                Try for just a minute and put aside your anti Catholic bigotry are realize that this is not about Catholics or Christians in general being targeted.  It’s about tearing down what little is left that prevents the Leviathan of the State from running your life.  It’s about you.

                But then again, perhaps that’s what you want.

                • http://twitter.com/Buffy2q Buffy

                  You can’t tell the difference between the individual mandate and contraception coverage.   There’s really no point in trying to get it through your head as you keep conflating the two, when they’re two entirely different matters.  I’m giving up before you give me a migraine.

                • Nordog

                  There are two mandates.  The general mandate of ObamaCare that all need to buy insurance (roughly speaking) and the HHS mandate that all policies must contain contraception.

                  The later is a subset, so to speak, of the former.  They are both constitutional overreaches on the part of the national federal government.

                  Migraine?  Perhaps you can force some Christians to pay for your Tylenol and convince them that it’s all part of making them play by the rules.  Or some such whacky liberal twaddle like that.

                • amycas

                  The contraception mandate is actually incorporated into the larger mandate to provide preventative health services for women though.

                • amycas

                  If the government can mandate that people who drive cars must have car insurance, then the government can mandate that people who use the medical system (which is everyone) must have health insurance. If our system is set up so the only feasible way for the vast majority of citizens to have health insurance is through their employer, then it follows that the government must mandate that employers provide health insurance. If it’s then demonstrated that those insurance companies are denying coverage for services that most people use and is generally a cost saving and life saving service, then the government can mandate that they cover that service.

                • Nordog6561

                  amycas,

                  But the governement does not mandate that I have car insurance.  And I DON’T have car insurance.  It is reasonable that if one is to drive a car one be made to cover the liability of hurting others.  Thus the laws requiring insurance to OWN and OPERATE a car on the public roads.

                  In the ObamaCare version, everyone is forced to have insurance by virtue of being alive.  Don’t forget that this mandate is being fought for by invocation of the commerce clause.

                  And as I’ve said before (sorry for sounding like Obama) if the governement can force you to buy something by virtue that your breathing and living falls under the commerce clause, then there is nothing the government can force you to do.

                  It’s still going to go down to defeat when the SCOTUS rules next month.

                • amycas

                   “If the government can mandate that people who drive cars must have car insurance”

                  That’s what I said. Read the clause in the middle. I clearly stated that the government mandates that PEOPLE WHO DRIVE CARS must have car insurance.

                  “Thus the laws requiring insurance to OWN and OPERATE a car on the public roads.”

                  That’s what you said, which is the same thing that I said. Next time, read what I freaking wrote. You post did not address anything I said because you assume that I meant everybody (regardless of if they own and operate a vehicle) must own car insurance, and everybody (regardless of whether or not they use it) must have health care. We’ve established that I didn’t say the latter, now let’s look at the former:

                  In the case of healthcare–everybody uses it. Everybody at some point in their life goes to a doctor and that has be paid for somehow. Those who don’t have any insurance tend to not pay (usually because they can’t). So if everybody buys health insurance, then everybody is paying into the system.

            • amycas

              Ever heard of OSHA? There’s plenty of stuff the federal government forces companies to buy for the health and welfare of the employees.

        • Coyotenose

           The mindset that not paying into societal functions that benefit you is just “keeping your own money” rather than what it actually is, “stealing from everyone else” is a self-absorbed, sociopathic mindset.

          • Nordog

            Now THAT is the seed of communism.

            • amycas

              So, I guess you don’t pay property taxes that build roads and keep schools open, because you just want to “keep your own money,” right? Obviously paying into a system that benefits you would just be communism.

        • amycas

           “The tax exempt status of churches on the other hand is a case in which
          churches keep money that is already theirs.  The mind set that holds
          that keeping your own money is a subsidy from the governement is a
          leftist socialist mindset.”

          Money from property taxes goes to thing like roads, infrastructure, poison control, police and fire departments, and other services which the church benefits from without having to pay those taxes. So no, it’s not like keeping money that already theirs, it’s like not paying into the system that affords them the niceties of our modern society.

    • amycas

       Except the church won’t be paying for contraception. When your job offers insurance, it functions as part of your compensation for work, basically like extended salary. Also, you typically pay into your health insurance as well, it’s just easier and cheaper to do it through an employer. Now, since it’s compensation for work, as part of your salary, and employers can’t tell you how to spend the money they give you for work, they also shouldn’t be allowed to tell you how to use the health insurance (which you also pay into) that they are giving you for work.

      • Nordog6561

        ROFL!

        Yeah right, the church pays for the insurance that provides the contraception, but the church doesn’t pay for the contraception.

        The condoms grow on trees up on the Big Rock Candy Mountain.

        Does your unicorn have a name?

        • amycas

           No, employees pay into their own insurance plan. Companies are just able to give a discounted price to their employees (it’s like buying in bulk).

          Here’s another idea: the church pays the employee’s salary, can the church then dictate that the employee not use that money to buy condoms??

          It seems I already said all of this though, so rather than repeat myself, if you don’t read what I write again, I’ll just tell you to go back to my original post.

          • Nordog6561

            “This isn’t about buying condoms and you know it. It’s about the b/c pill, which a majority of women take for medical reasons other than birth control.”

            Which the Catholic Church has no problem with.

            “No, employees pay into their own insurance plan. Companies are just able to give a discounted price to their employees (it’s like buying in bulk).”

            Many Church organizations ARE their own insurance companies; they are self insured.

            “Here’s another idea: the church pays the employee’s salary, can the church then dictate that the employee not use that money to birth control??”

            The Church cannot, and does not desire to dictate or otherwise control how any employee spends his or her salary, contrary to the paranoid ramblings of those who insist the evil Church wants to control women’s bodies.

  • http://twitter.com/Buffy2q Buffy

    That’s it exactly, not that they’ll ever admit it.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_6OE7LEYELE4MZTVXGZUSVTBFUI julie

    I really doubt that this is how they think of this debate, but it definitely amounts to controlling women in the end. To them, they’re just adhering to what they believe to be moral, and trying to force that on other people, since they know their morals are the correct morals.
    Still, they remain oblivious to the fact that their moral guide was based off of ancient misogynist beliefs, rather than the will of a perfect God. To Christians, the debate is about whether or not unmarried women should be able to have sex without consequences. To Catholics specifically, it is about whether anyone should be able to have sex without consequences. They probably think of it as For Your Own Good. They have enough excuses about the moral issues that they’ll never have to admit to themselves what the debate is really about.

    • http://northierthanthou.com/ northierthanthou

       I think you are right that folks behind these debates don’t think of it as an exercise in control, but I also think that is because they have developed such a strong sense of entitlement that control goes without saying in their minds, or at least it should.

      • RupertPupkin

        Hahahahahahahahaha, so the ones who oppose the government’s attempts to force religious institutions to purchase contraception are the people with a stronge sent of entitlement in this debate? It’s the other way around. 

        • RupertPupkin

          In the above post, I accidentally I misspelled the word strong as “stronge”.

          • Coyotenose

             Don’t worry about typos and grammatical errors if people can still understand what you wrote. A lot of folks text comments on mobile devices. Just sacrifice a goat to Tpyos and all will be forgiven.

        • Coyotenose

           Do you think religious institutions should be exempt from paying taxes for roads, police, fire departments, etc.?

          No?

          They’d be freeloading?

          A functional society requires that everyone pay in if anyone does?

          Huh. Imagine that.

          ———–

          “I am able to see that in a free society, the government shouldn’t be
          able to force private individuals or groups to violate their
          consciences.”

          It goes against my Libertarian conscience to be forced to spend money on roads for other peoples’ use. Ta da!

          ————

          You also appear to be completely ignorant of the Right’s longstanding attempts to destroy sex education, inhibit contraception, and control the bodies and lives of women. This is very important: OUR CRITICISMS DO NOT OCCUR IN A VACUUM.

    • RupertPupkin

      I don’t believe in any God at all, yet mysteriously, I am able to see that in a free society, the government shouldn’t be able to force private individuals or groups to violate their consciences.  Imagine that.  

      Claiming this is about controlling women is absolutely ridiculous.  If the Catholic Church doesn’t want to foot the bill for your birth control you can, imagine this,  pay for it yourself. What a shocking concept, I know.  

       Freedom of religion is the very first thing mentioned in the Bill of Rights.  I don’t recall reading any amendments mentioning an inalienable right to have someone else pay for your diaphragms in the Constitution. 

  • http://northierthanthou.com/ northierthanthou

    This one hits the nail on the head.

  • Brett

    just not accurate on this one Mike.  Keep trying to bully religion, this has never worked in history. You want like a world with no civilization or religion, trust me.

    • Coyotenose

      Given that you don’t seem to know the difference between civilization and religion, it isn’t really surprising that you imagine you have any idea what a world without religion would be like.

  • RupertPupkin

    What a ridiculous cartoon.  Sorry, but trying to mask your left-wing political agenda behind atheism is pretty transparent here. What that cartoon should have is an agent of the government walking into the confessional and telling the priest “The Contraception debate’s about controlling you”.

  • RupertPupkin

    Why is that so many atheists  are willing to throw freedom of religion or conscience (or assembly, or speech) out the window when it involves religious institutions?  A quick perusal of the comment sections reveals that many of the atheists here seem to believe the so-called separation of church and state is a one way street. The hypocrisy is simply breathtaking.   


CLOSE | X

HIDE | X