Pay for People’s Contraception? No Thanks!

July 25, 2011

Embracing Life

Chocolates in the bath keep me sane. I don’t expect the good people of America to pay for my Godivas in order to ensure my mental health, and I wouldn’t want the chocolatiers in Belgium mandated to ship boxes of their smooth truffles to my house lest I go cuckoo. I will pay for this little habit myself, thank you very much.

Jogging keeps me healthy. I don’t expect the good people of America to pay for my running shoes in order to ensure I stay fit, and I wouldn’t want Nike commanded to ship boxes of their Zoom Vomero footwear to my home to make sure I keep exercising. It’s only logical that I should pay for these myself and keep “hitting the road” because that’s what is best for me.

Granted, these habits aren’t controversial, but some activities are– and I definitely don’t want to pay for those! It would weigh heavy on my conscience if I did. It’s outrageous that folks in Washington want to make all of us pay for things that I think individuals should be responsible for themselves (or forego all together!) Do you want to purchase somebody else’s surgical sterilization, prescription birth control, breast-pump rentals, annual wellness exams and HIV tests?

Where is accountability and personal responsibility? Have they flown out the window?

The Catholic News Agency/EWTN News reported, “The health care legislation that was passed in 2010 directed the Obama administration to create a list of preventive services for women that all new health care plans must cover without deductibles or co-payments. In response, a committee of the National Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Medicine (IOM) drafted non-binding guidelines in a year-long review conducted at the request of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.”

Photo courtesy of CNA/EWTN

Cardinal Daniel DiNardo (Chairman of the Committee on Pro-Life Activities of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops) Speaks Out:

“I strongly oppose the Institute of Medicine’s recommendation that the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) mandate coverage of three particular practices in almost all private health plans: surgical sterilization; all FDA-approved birth control (including the IUD, “morning-after” pills, and the abortion-inducing drug Ella); and ‘education and counseling’ promoting these among all ‘women of reproductive capacity.’

“The considerable cost of these practices will be paid by all who participate in health coverage, employers and employees alike, including those who conscientiously object to Planned Parenthood’s agenda.

“Without sufficient legal protection for rights of conscience, such a mandate would force all men, women and children to carry health coverage that violates the deeply-held moral and religious convictions of many.  This new threat to conscience makes it especially critical for Congress to pass the “Respect for Rights of Conscience Act” introduced by Reps. Jeff Fortenberry and Dan Boren (HR 1179). I am writing to all members of Congress to urge their co-sponsorship.”

Cardinal DiNardo also stated that the Institute of Medicine committee may recommend mandatory coverage for surgical abortions, if such a mandate were not prevented by law. “Planned Parenthood is ‘celebrating’ the report, and if the HHS implements its recommendations it will violate the ‘deeply-held moral and religious convictions of many.’ ” (CNA/EWTN News)

I am one of those people whose deeply-held moral and religious convictions would be violated if this is implemented; I would be grappling with my conscience continuously because these practices do not embrace life.

Cardinal DiNardo stated in his July 19 news release, “‘The IOM missed an opportunity to promote better health care for women that is life-affirming and truly compassionate.  I once again urge the Department of Health and Human Services to focus on the need of all Americans, including immigrants and the poor, for basic life-saving health coverage – not on mandating controversial elective practices in ways that undermine the good of women and children, the consciences of employers, employees and health plan providers, and the common good.”

Instead of paying for women’s contraception and abortions, I think the Cardinal is correct–Americans would rather their money go toward an indisputable good…Heck, maybe even chocolates and sneakers! Seems like a better “choice” to me.




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About Kathy Schneeman

After graduating from The College of St. Thomas, I taught at Nativity in St. Paul until our oldest was just about born in the classroom (What a great lesson on life that would have been for my students!) I then became a stay-at-home-mom while teaching religious education classes and working very part time at UST. Recently, I served as the Archdiocese's Life Coordinator in the Office for Marriage, Family and Life until twins arrived (I was almost 43!) When I have a few minutes of quiet time, I like to run, eat chocolates, scones and Mexican food (that's why I run), read, and have a beverage with my husband at night. We have a whopping nine kids (yes...same husband and same wife; we get that question a lot!) and we attend St. Joseph's in West St. Paul--where we first met when we were in grade school.

View all posts by Kathy Schneeman