Oklahoma Republicans: still silly about abortion.

The GOP has been all about creationism and abortion since getting body slammed in the last election.  Now Oklahoma is trying to throw some Obamacare into the mix (with a side of abortion, so not a huge departure).

Employers in Oklahoma could opt not to include contraceptives and abortions in employee insurance plans under a measure that secured passage by a Senate committee Thursday.

The measure, Senate Bill 452 by Sen. Clark Jolley, R-Edmond, passed the Senate Business and Commerce Committee by a vote of 9-0 with no debate and now heads to the full Senate.

“Notwithstanding any other provision of state or federal law, no employer shall be required to provide or pay for any benefit or service related to abortion or contraception through the provision of health insurance to his or her employees,” the bill says.

Under the federal Affordable Health Care Act, employee group insurance plans are required to cover contraception unless the business offering the benefit meets the conditions of being a religious organization, said Mike Rhoades, Oklahoma Insurance Department deputy commissioner of life and health insurance.

I’m not sure they understand how federal laws work.  If states can just vote not to abide by federal law, then that kind of nullifies the point of federal law.  Now, the federal government can elect not to enforce the law (like they are doing with pot in Colorado or with DOMA), but I doubt the Obama DoJ will do anything other than look at this legislation and say “Cute, you appealed to your base, but employers in your state are still getting fined.”

Then again, at the risk of riling conservatives, maybe they won’t.  Although Obama has nothing to lose, as he can’t get re-elected, and the country is largely pro-choice anyway.

Jolley said the measure is the result of a request from a constituent, Dr. Dominic Pedulla, an Oklahoma City cardiologist who describes himself as a natural family planning medical consultant and women’s health researcher.

Pedulla says he is morally against contraception and abortion. He said he had to give up his small group health plan because the only plans available in the state required coverage for contraception and sterilization. He and his family were on the plan and had to find more expensive insurance elsewhere.

“Every small group plan forces you to choose those options,” Pedulla said.

Women are worse off with contraception because it suppresses and disables who they are, Pedulla said.

Disables who they are?  Oh fuck this guy.  If you’re going to tell a woman she wants a child, even when she insists she doesn’t, you might as well tell her that her favorite food is brussels sprouts when she insists it’s pizza.  Individuals decide who they are, not pretentious doctors who think they have the ear of god.  If a woman doesn’t want a child, that’s who she is.  Women are not just meaty incubators.

“Part of their identity is the potential to be a mother,” Pedulla said. “They are being asked to suppress and radically contradict part of their own identity, and if that wasn’t bad enough, they are being asked to poison their bodies.”

The hell?  That’s like saying oxygen dependency is part of my identity, just because I’m born with it.  On that note, people born with physical disabilities, based on this guy’s logic, is part of their identity.  Guess what – the way we want to be has more to do with our identity than the way we were born.  If I could live without my dependency on oxygen, I would.  If people born with disabilities could erase them, they would.  And if a woman doesn’t want to have a child, or if she doesn’t even want the potential to bear a child, that’s her identity.

And poisoning their body?  How so?  Ever seen what happens to a woman’s body when she’s carrying a baby?  That’s some fucking poison right there.

Anybody who disguises their desire to control other people, to make another person conform their pursuit of happiness to your standards, all while pretending to look out for them is an asshole at best, religious at worst.

About JT Eberhard

When not defending the planet from inevitable apocalypse at the rotting hands of the undead, JT is a writer and public speaker about atheism, gay rights, and more. He spent two and a half years with the Secular Student Alliance as their first high school organizer. During that time he built the SSA’s high school program and oversaw the development of groups nationwide. JT is also the co-founder of the popular Skepticon conference and served as the events lead organizer during its first three years.

  • Glodson

    I’m not sure they understand how federal laws work. If states can just vote not to abide by federal law, then that kind of nullifies the point of federal law.

    Yea… State Nullification has been rejected by the Supreme Court. It is not a power granted to the states. We pretty much had a war over the idea, then a series of decisions during the 1950′s over the whole Civil Rights thing. They either know this and don’t care, or they don’t understand this. Either way, it is a stupid waste of time.

    Pedulla says he is morally against contraception and abortion. He said he had to give up his small group health plan because the only plans available in the state required coverage for contraception and sterilization. He and his family were on the plan and had to find more expensive insurance elsewhere.

    What an asshole.

  • Kat

    “Part of their identity is the potential to be a mother.”

    So, besides all the other stupid here, what about women who can’t have children, even without contraception? Do they have no identity? What the hell?

    • Glodson

      That about covers it. That’s what I got out of it myself. I guess menopause is when women really die a death having lost their ability to produce more children. And women who us contraception to stop having children, or to wait until she’s ready to have a child, are just half-women. Part women.

      I wonder how he feels about vasectomies.

    • http://gamesgirlsgods.blogspot.com/ M

      I guess, being a woman with no children, I don’t count as a for-real person yet. I have no identity or value as a human being other than “potential incubator”. I have no thoughts, dreams, desires, or goals, just a uterus for popping out real people (boys) and future incubators (girls). I’m poisoning myself with …. well, with the same hormones I’d have in my body if I were pregnant, actually, just in lower doses, because that’s how hormonal birth control works.

      What an asshole.

    • ArachneS

      Not only that, but what about the other parts of my body? My nervous system has the ability to make me feel pain, if I suppress that function of my body am I denying part of who I am? If I need to have my leg amputated, am I rejecting that part of my potential is to be a marathon runner?

      I don’t think they can get it into their heads that a part of a woman’s body isn’t the entirety of her person. I am not my uterus. If anything I would say I am my mind, you mess with that and then I will say you are ruining my personal identity.

  • Loqi

    They are being asked to suppress and radically contradict part of their own identity, and if that wasn’t bad enough, they are being asked to poison their bodies.

    People are asking women to use contraception? On top of all the other things wrong with this statement, does he actually think that contraception is being forced on them and that they don’t have a choice?
    Also, I want someone to ask him what he thinks about gay rights and reversion therapy. I bet he’s all in favor of suppressing and contradicting part of their own identities.

    • drax

      This. It is a recurring argument that I hear. They are conflating the required availability of birth control and abortion as a mandate to use birth control and have abortions. In the words of KMFDM – “If you don’t want an abortion don’t get one!”

  • Ryan

    “Now, the federal government can elect not to enforce the law (like they are doing with pot in Colorado or with DOMA)”
    No, they are choosing not to DEFEND the DOMA law in court. They are most certainly still *enforcing* it, though.
    Also, I keep hearing more about Obama’s DOJ being the most aggressive on marijuana ever, so I’m not so sure of your other example, either.

  • Aegis

    It speaks volumes that this guy’s notion of ‘who a woman is’ is based with such focus around her role as an incubator. That attitude alone qualifies him for four or five kicks in the balls.


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