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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Birth control debate rages on

Unless you've been hiding under a rock, you know that there's been a debate about birth control being a part of healt care plans. And the Catholic church has a problem with providing birth control through heath care plans as do their hospitals. What is a real moral and ethical dilemma for Catholic Church leadership is not being protrayed with the care and concern.

There is a real question for some other kinds of organizations which are Catholic-run, such as hospitals which do not qualify as religious organizations.

I sent this letter to someone about it. I'm not sure he will get it. Tell me if you think it sounds logical:

Ah, I see, so the law is just that one must provide prescription contraception, not abortions.  Many Christian organizations haven't got nearly the issue of the Catholic no birth control mandate. They do encourage natural methods-and personally being someone with a chemical sensitivity, I think those natural methods are of some value to a couple who is very good at communicating with each other and very patient and/or sensitive to chemical/hormonal birth control methods. I remember an Evangelical friend of mine talking about what birth control was acceptable as she was planning her wedding because she felt that life begins at conception and would use a pill that stop ovulation but not another kind that prevents implantation of a fertilized egg. So, no IUDs, no to certain pills and yes to others, barrier methods are ok, etc. I saw this as a very thoughtful process that this person was engaged in and that she was very concerned. I could still see this being a really big issue for people who believe that life begins at conception, so the opt-out is very important. While some of these religious leaders say some stupid things, some of them are really thinking about ethical issues which are sincere matters for them.

And yes, it's a real problem for a Catholic hospital. They have essentially been mandated by laws not to discriminate in hiring (though I experienced discrimination when I applied to positions at Catholic schools) and now have a problem being told they can't opt out on the birth control issue. I think their dilemma is being downplayed and ridiculed. They deserve some measure of compassion as concerned people who don't want to kill what they think are real human beings and not just be portrayed as sexist brutes who want to oppress women and force religion on the masses.

And just so we are clear, here, this is what the religious exemption law looks like in the books in California. Please look into applicable laws in your state's code books. We have ours online at http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/calaw.html

Cal. Insurance Code § 10123.196 and Cal. Health & Safety Code § 1367.25 (1999) require certain health insurance policies that already cover prescription drugs to provide coverage for prescription contraceptive methods approved by the FDA. Religious employers can request health insurance plans without coverage of approved contraceptive methods that are contrary to the employer’s religious tenants. (AB 39)
If you are interested in reading more about methods of birth control, I found this site to be balanced and helpful in discussion of side effects and how the method works in the body.  http://site.themarriagebed.com/biology/birth-control
Thanks for reading! Please leave a comment! (Thanks also for lurking. I don't allow anonymous comments. SavvySingleChristian@yahoo.com)

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