A Woman Said

What follows was part of a discussion on a well known “social media site”.  I copied it because I thought it said a lot about a great divide in our country, the one between two kinds of people, two generations, two different world views, two different cultures.  It was occasioned by the appearance of a cartoon showing the President of these Untied States wearing the clerical robes of a pope.  It was s satirical cartoon designed for strong reactions, and it got them.  People objected to the artist’s robing Obama as the Catholic Pontiff, commented on his support for abortion and his refusal to recognize the conscience rights of Catholics.  Someone, a young woman, wrote:

I find it disturbing, but I’m mostly offended by the commentary it represents. I don’t like Obama, but I don’t find him to be any more “tyrannical” or arrogant than any other President we’ve had. Calling him a Communist really just illuminates one’s complete misunderstanding of communism, and the equation of abortion with the Holocaust as well as the implication that requiring insurance to cover birth control is equal to abortion, just pisses me off.

And someone replied that while the Holocaust had destroyed a mere 6 million, the death toll from abortion was much higher than that.  They wanted to know why such a thing as that comparison “pissed her off”.  The lady said:

Because those Jews weren’t unborn fetuses whose existence required the cooperation of women whose bodies they’d be inhabiting, stressing, straining and whose lives they’d be massively impacting irreparably as a result…. I think people have a right to liberty and pursuit of happiness. I don’t think carrying unwanted pregnancies to term is part of either of those things.

This occasioned a criticism of the lady’s position on abortion and contraception as rights guaranteed by the Constitution and legitimate medical procedures necessary for good reproductive healthShe took issue:

Yeah… I disagree. People have a right to want to get off with a partner without getting pregnant as a result, and they also have a right to end pregnancies. You see – there’s a part of anyone’s moral compass that may say “well, in the event of rape – or in the event of medical complications – or in the event of abuse – or in the event of an accident…” well guess what – I don’t think the government should be sitting in a woman’s doctor’s office with her… and I don’t consider myself or anyone else an appropriate judge of when it’s “okay” and it’s not to abort an unwanted fetus – so in the interest of liberty, I’m going to excuse myself and the government acting on my behalf, and anyone else I have the power to excuse, of the right to decide when that woman may exercise her physical autonomy. She is a free being – if she chooses to allow a fetus to grow inside her, if she chooses to remove it – that’s entirely none of anybody else’s business. The moral consequences are hers alone, whatever they may be….  I think people have a right to liberty and pursuit of happiness. I don’t think carrying unwanted pregnancies to term is part of either of those things.

As for the requirement that private employer’s insurance policies cover contraception – I could go on at length about the necessity of hormonal birth control for many women (such as myself) for entirely NON-birth control related reasons (if I don’t take it, I get terrible cysts due to my endometriosis – cysts that may very well prevent me from getting pregnant in the future when I choose to) – but also that I don’t think an employer, whether or not it’s the Catholic church, should be making the medical decisions of its employees. Removing one area of coverage allows others to be chipped away at – and employers and insurance companies may find it in their interest to lower premiums by not covering many routine and/or necessary procedures they chose not to agree with for whatever reason.

Someone took issue with her position:

You need not go on at length about the necessity of hormonal treatments for many women. I am relying only on my memory, and anecdotes from a woman (my first mother-in-law, may she rest in peace) who worked for one of the doctors who developed such medications here, but I seem to recall that he and his colleagues were concerned to develop medications for those conditions…and to regulate the menstrual cycles of their patients who were having trouble conceiving. I got the distinct impression that this one doctor, at least, was dismayed at what has been made of his work, since. That is merely an impression, though.

That said, it would be heartless of me to seek to bar someone who needed an effective treatment from getting it, and I would think the same of anyone else who held that view, that they were heartless. However, I would give odds that the number of therapeutic uses to which those medications are put is far outweighed by the number of women who use them for what is thought by most of the world to be their only use. You and I do not agree that people have a” right to get off with a partner without getting pregnant as a result”, especially if the exercise of that “right” requires me…or any other person, or organization….whose religion and deeply held belief consider such a thing morally reprehensible. More than that, I am not alone in thinking that requiring persons who so believe to pay for the means to do so in however small a part is equally reprehensible. In such a case, my constitutional right to the free practice of my religion trumped the other” right” you champion so eloquently…until January 20.

Let me make myself clear, here. There is no right that I know to health care of any kind either enumerated in the constitution or to be found in the shadows of those rights enumerated…except for abortion from 1973, a procedure which I and many others consider homicide, now made legal and claimed as a right, and simply because it is performed by doctors in clinics and hospitals also recognized as a “therapeutic” procedure…an Orwellian mangling of language if ever there was one.

Finally, I’ll risk being possibly incorrect on your position about Obamacare, but I think I will be safe in concluding that whatever it is, your position and mine on the so called “mandate” and its subsequent amendment meet with your approval. If I am wrong you may chalk it up to my leaping to that conclusion from your assertion of a right to mutual getting off without the risk/threat of pregnancy.  Even though the exercise of that right requires the use of some forms of contraception for a perversion of their original purpose.

Time and space do not permit an exploration of why I would reject as immoral such things. Time and space do not allow, either, for a discussion which I think needs being had in this country about responsibilities and duties rather than rights; concepts which would seem to me to rule out such things as mutual getting off without the risk of pregnancy. Suffice to say the arguments would be framed within natural law principles, which I suppose you know well and reject. And, now, I retire.

And that is the way it rests.  Silence reigns, and no one is satisfied with anyone else.

9 responses to “A Woman Said

  1. Stepping out from the pro-choice pro-life debate for a moment, I’d suggest that we all focus for a moment on the word “routine”. To me that means, “ordinary and predictable”. And, are we talking about “insurance”? Where a bunch of folks with the same random risk profile pool their premiums to be paid out when that fire, flood, or tornado hits. Here we have a lady arguing that we, as a society, should “insure” “oil changes for our cars.” Where is the random disaster in an “oil change”? Went to aa Jiffy Lube / Oil Well / or some such place last week. In and out for under $100 in ½ hour. Now envision if it was insured. Call 1-800-thrid world country, file a report, yada yada. No way that was going to cost under $100 and less than ½ hour. In principle, it’s the same. Forcing “insurance companies” into the position of paying for “routine” stuff is just wrong. So, if this is NOT about “insurance”, then it must be about “politics”, propaganda, and manipulation. So this circles us back t the pro-life pro-choice debate. Because it’s OBVIOUSLY NOT about “insurance”. imho. ymmv.

  2. One notes the vulgarity of the pro-abortion woman; “getting it off” is simply a milder version of the well-known words descriptive of copulation. I wonder if her mother, or her grandmothers, would use such language about the copulation and the “fetus” [not the baby] that resulted in her.
    Hers is the philosophy of the brothel. The attitude is saddening; but it does express the sickness we should be praying to root out: that of the aborters – the women and the medical people – who have inoculated themselves against seeing the horror of their desires and actions.

    • Vulgarity it is, to be sure. But, vulgarity has become the King’s English, lately. You use the word “inoculated” correctly, Gabriel. I remember reading of the “inoculations’ resorted to by the guards and henchmen in the Nazi extermination camps. One cannot live long with oneself seeing, doing and thinking those things

  3. The Obama administration is being accused of imposing government regulations on Religions ignoring their Religious beliefs. In effect, telling them how to practice their Religion. Once again, NO one is saying that anyone has to use contraception, sterilization or abortion, if they don’t choose to. However, to try to prevent someone who chooses to avail themselves of those legal proceedures is doing exactly what the Obama administration of doing, imposing their beliefs on people who don’t believe their way. That is dictatorial and wrong. Let all those without sin cast the first stone. No one is telling any religion how they must practice their religion. However, there are differences between churches and hospitals. If I go to your church, then you teach me what your religion has to say. If I go to your hospital and ask to be treated, understanding that you will charge me for the treatment, you shouldn’t impose restrctions on that treatment based on your religious beliefs. That’s imposing your beliefs on those who do not believe the way you do. That is why there is a, de Facto, separation of church and state.

    • Hello Joe,
      In a recent column in National Review (someone sent it to me. I don’t read it) James Lileks writes about the thing you misidentify as an attempt by believers to force people out of getting medications they need which the government will provide for them. I quote at length because I couldn’t say it better:
      ” Let’s imagine a dockworker in 1948. He’s got a hot date with a fast chippy, but, y’know, like they told him in the army, the last thing a fella needs is a dose of the drip. So he goes to his boss, who’s in the office talking on the phone. “Give me a dollar out of petty cash,” the worker says. “I need to buy some French letters.” The employer might have regarded the worker with some confusion: “I must have misunderstood. For what purpose do you require the loan?” “I need some rubbers and it’s not a loan.”
      This would have been unthinkable. But, we’ve moved forward. We’ve grown! Now it’s assumed that your employer will defer the cost of zygote determent, because fertility is a pre-existing condition. What’s more, free birth control protects women from the adverse of a strange, mysterious situation which affects millions every year: sudden-sex syndrome. We don’t fully understand how it works, or what the causes might be, but apparently there’s nothing you can do about it. All of a sudden you’re just having sex! There’s not a moment to exercise free will or consider the consequences; it;s just like being struck by lightning, and lightning doesn’t call you for days afterwards, either.
      Hence the panic over letting employers decline to provide the tools to cope with sudden sex syndrome. They have to! Mommy make the man give me my pills.
      All of the people who wanted government out of their bedroom insist not only taht it take a seat in the corner but that it bring in business and make it leave its wallet on the nightstand.”

      There are legitimate medical conditions which are offered some relief by medications which have come to be used overwhelmingly for their contraceptive and abortifacient qualities. For those purposes the people using them should not demand that they are paid for by their employers if the employers faith forbids them to aid in such things, nor should the government order it since it violates a constitutionally guaranteed right. I would not, nor I think would anyone else object to a case by case review of the matter and an authorization of insurance premium payments to cover treatment for the few cases of legitimate medical need. THAT is definitely NOT what the HHS mandate is ordering, nor the so-called accommodation which is the same thing in theory and practice.
      We’ve been around this before, Joe, and i cannot understand your failure to see the situation as it really is.

  4. Peter,
    It’s simple. If I wanted to avail myself of a legal medical proceedure that’s covered by my medical insurance from a medical facility, I don’t want a medical facility telling me that I can’t have the proceedure I have chosen because it violates the religious beliefs of the ownership of the medical facility. If the hospital was run by Christian Scientists, which would never happen, and needed a blood transfusion, I don’t wnat them to deny me that proceedure. No one is asking anyone else to pay for the proceedure but me through my insurance and I’m the one making the decision to have the proceedure with my medically advised consent. I can’t understand why you can’t see that what you are advocating is imposing your beliefs on those who do not believe your way.
    I grant you your emphatic beliefs, and I applaud your decision to not want to use contraception or want to be sterilized or want your wife or daughter or the women closest to you to have an abortion. So please do not use contraception or get sterilized or encourage a woman to get an abortion. However, we were created with free will and if another human being makes a decision of their own, that should be between that soul and their maker. He who is without sin, let him cast the first stone. This is a matter of conscience, let it stay there. If you want to legislate conscience, then you are assuming rights that are not yousr but only God Almighty’s.

  5. Pingback: POLITICAL: The debate is really NOT about “insurance” « Reinke Faces Life

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