Isn't That Convenient

The Church Lady, politics, and Notre Dame? Must be Health Insurance Issues With Dave!

The client was adamant. He didn’t want birth control covered and he didn’t want abortion. And because he had over 50 employees and because the year was 1991, I could get his group health insurance policy issued to his specifications. Was this a decision based upon his values and personal religious beliefs? Not hardly. The elimination of these benefits reduced his premium. He was not concerned about the needs of his female employees. The spouses and children of his male employees were not his problem. His daughter-in-laws could afford birth control pills and his granddaughters were still in elementary school.

If that same conversation were held today, his request would be couched with religious overtones. But truth be told, he would have pretended to have been Catholic if it would have saved him 2 percent.

The Sunday Plain Dealer had a half dozen letters to the editor about the recent lawsuit. A group of 43 Catholic organizations including the archdioceses of New York and Washington, the University of Notre Dame and Catholic University of America, are suing to block requirements of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act to provide birth control, IUD’s, and the morning after pill. The letters feature Catholics defining Catholicism, Catholics attacking anyone out of step with the current Pope, and Catholics clarifying their belief that theirs is the only true version of Christianity.

As a non-Catholic, non-Christian, I have the opportunity to observe what appears to be a lot of heat, but very little light.

The fun part of this is that the PPACA does not guarantee these benefits, just the fight.

Free Preventive Care, no copays, deductibles, or coinsurance, is a key element of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. It is the Obama administration and Kathleeen Sebelius, the Secretary of Health and Human Services, who chose to define birth control pills, IUDs, and the morning after pill as part of Preventive Care. That was a deliberate choice.

But when it comes to the PPACA, almost everyone is pro-choice. The Democrats chose to ignore the parts they don’t like. Republicans choose to ignore the parts that they once endorsed or created.

Are there people truly offended by the birth control provision or the individual mandate? Of course. But like my client of 20 years ago, much of this appears to be convenient agitation. They don’t want to implement the program and this is the excuse du jour. There are costs involved with any improvement in access to care or treatment.  n our system, it will be the employers who will bear that burden.  There are also some Americans who will disagree with this President no matter what. Some of those people are now, for the first times in their lives, rooting for Notre Dame.

Will the Supreme Court drop-kick the individual mandate? Will the Catholic Church have its day in court? Your guess is as good as mine.

I still contend that none of this really matters.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

marie harmon May 29, 2012 at 02:16 PM
Interesting comments. There will always be a "veil of conscience" causing people who are not directly effected by an event to refuse to even consider a change for themselves. We need more women representing us as they are most effected by this issue and many men are basically not interested. Civil rights bills would not have passed if there werenot a voter registeration of minorities.
Dave Cunix May 31, 2012 at 01:00 PM
I don’t believe that places of worship, churches, synagogues, or mosques are required to violate their religious tenets. This is about the universities, hospitals, etc… Many of these organizations not only employ people of all religions (or people with no religious affiliation), but much of their funding comes from local, state, and federal funding. Again, my point is about the Convenience of the moral outrage about the birth control issue or the individual mandate. Someone like Newt Gingrich would have been just as offended if the individual mandate, which he has long championed, had not been included in this bill. I don’t doubt that there are people of good will who view these or other issues seriously. Sadly, they are not the loudest voices fighting the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.


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