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Getting a Religious Exemption to Providing 'Free' Birth Control Just Got Easier

Department of Health and Human Services officials claim the rule will not change coverage for "99.9 percent of women."

Frédéric Cirou/F. Cirou / Altopress/NewscomFrédéric Cirou/F. Cirou / Altopress/NewscomThe Trump administration is following through on promises to roll back the Affordable Care Act's contraception mandate, though health officials say the vast majority of insured women won't be affected.

This morning, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued a new rule regarding the mandate, which had stipulated that virtually all health insurance plans were to cover myriad forms of contraception, with no point-of-service costs passed on to patients. Ever since it was adopted, the mandate had been the site of a religious freedom fight, as employers with faith-based objections to birth control argued that they shouldn't be compelled to subsidize it.

Under the new interim rule, which takes effect immediately, a much wider group of employers will be eligible for religious exemptions from the mandate.

Previously, only churches, religious nonprofits, and closely held private companies could apply for exemptions. Under the revised rule, any nonprofit or for-profit employer, including academic institutions and publicly traded companies, can seek to opt out on moral grounds.

And whereas previously, exempted employers had to put up with an accomodation process under which insurers picked up the tab for employee birth control, this move is now optional.

HHS officials have told reporters that the rule will not change coverage for "99.9 percent of women." It's not clear that this is true—it assumes that only the entities currently suing over the rule will seek exemptions. In any event, "the new rule is almost certain to spark fresh litigation," notes The Washington Post.

Nicholas Bagley, a law professor at the University of Michigan, points out that "HHS can skip notice and comment [as it did here] only if it has 'good cause' to do so. 'Good cause' is a narrow exception, reserved for emergencies." Bagley says he doesn't think it will apply here, and he'd "bet a bunch of money that the courts won't think so either." So we'll see if the revised rule survives.

Photo Credit: Frédéric Cirou/F. Cirou / Altopress/Newscom

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  • SIV||

    Buy your own damned birth control.

  • Chipper Morning, Mean Girl||

    I would say SIV says that to all his dates. But, you know.

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    When you have no dates, saying it to everyone and saying it to none can both be true. Such is the magic of zero.

  • Hugh Akston||

    SIV has more dates than he can handle. But birth control is somewhat different for them, because it just means serving the fertilized eggs for breakfast the morning after.

  • BambiB||

    Kidding aside, he's right.

    If you ever read John Lott's research the subject (http://johnrlott.blogspot.com/2012/01/ womens-suffrage-and-size-of-government.html) you'd know that the women's vote is why all states and the federal government now run deficits and most are on an unsustainable financial course.

    The "I have a right to birth control" meme is just an extension of the female/socialist state. They have a right to keep their ankles together. If they want more birth control than that, they should buy it.

  • damikesc||

    I'd have no issue with birth control for a legitimate medical need (I know some do need it). It's not a long list of conditions that need it.

    But for its actual purpose, birth control's main purpose is to PREVENT proper function of the body. It shouldn't be insured at all.

    I told people for years that insurance companies didn't cover it because it provided no savings. When a woman decided she wanted a baby, the company was on the hook for the baby regardless. Only way, if I was an insurer, I'd consider covering it would be with implanted multiyear BC and I wouldn't cover removal for anything besides serious medical condition.

  • Tony||

    But please, employer, go ahead and lather me up with all your personal religious beliefs you want, for freedom.

  • Slimer||

    So work somewhere else

    Oh right, you think you own the job.

  • Tony||

    The employer is getting an exemption from the law that other employers don't get for the sole reason that he believes in stupid bulllshit. It is a special license from Big Government for employers to force employees to be victims of their religious beliefs.

    Also we don't throw all our rights away when we go to work, even though libertarians think that's how it should be.

  • Slimer||

    "The employer is getting an exemption from the law that other employers don't get for the sole reason that he believes in stupid bulllshit."

    Tony thinks the 1st Amendment is stupid bullshit.

    "Also we don't throw all our rights away when we go to work"

    Who said you do? I said work somewhere else. Making your employer do whatever you want isn't a right you have.

  • Tony||

    Nobody's forcing the employer to run his business either. Maybe he should find another vocation if he can't run a shop without following the law.

  • Sevo||

    Tony|10.6.17 @ 3:56PM|#
    "Nobody's forcing the employer to run his business either. Maybe he should find another vocation if he can't run a shop without following the law."
    Lefty twit has never posted anything which is not dishonest in some form or other. It's all he knows, so I guess we should give him a break.
    .
    .
    .
    Naah!
    Fuck off.

  • Slimer||

    But the 1st Amendment is the law.

  • Slimer||

    "Nobody's forcing the employer to run his business either"

    No one has ever been forced to bake a cake against their will, and the 1st Amendment?

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    This highlights one of the many problems I see with the ACA. It puts too much power in the hands of a department overseen by the President. The President can get the department to change rules as the President sees fit. The rules could bounce between two points every 4 years. Free birth control under Obama. No free birth control under Trump. Who knows what the next President will want. That can be true with other things than just birth control.

  • damikesc||

    Or you can pay for your own healthcare. The employer doesn't really care what you do with your money.

    Why are you so opposed to people spending their OWN wages to pay for their birth control?

  • BambiB||

    The law should not exist in the first place.

  • C. S. P. Schofield||

    Tony, I know that a religious belief that birth control is a sin is silly. A lot of beliefs are silly; that electric cars are not an ecological disaster in the making, that government is competent to make judgements about Art, that Pepsi is better than Coke (or vice versa).

    Just because a belief is silly is not a good reason to force somebody to go against it.

    Or course the core issue here is the way the government has arranged that employers pretty much HAVE to provide health insurance. But that's been that way for so long that there probably isn't a way to go back without causing a great deal of misery.

  • Brandybuck||

    Don't foist your religious beliefs on me, but do do oh please do give me mah birth control!

    This isn't about religion, it's about wether or not private employers should be compelled to offer Cadillac health plans that cover absolutely everything sold in at the back counter of Rite-Aid. Where's mah free Sudafed dammit?!?!

    Okay fine, ladies' birth control is different from mens' control. Primary difference is that ladies' birth control comes in a bewildering variety of options, most of which should not require a presciption to begin with. So just get rid of the prescription requirements. Problem solved. Mandatory ObamaCare (praise be his holy name) coverage should only cover a contraceptive if medically necessary because none of the other 18 varieties of ladies' birth control apply for this particular patient.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    So just get rid of the prescription requirements. Problem solved.

    I want to see more of this.

  • Devastator||

    You need to look up "cadillac health plan", it's not what you think it is. Overall paying for birth control actually saves the government money because unwanted births and welfare cost government far far more. Sometimes you just have to be pragmatic. Now there's some fodder for some fucking retard to run with and use slippery slope to say I just justified Nazi death camps. Go ahead and hang yourself with all that slack I gave you, retard.

  • damikesc||

    You need to look up "cadillac health plan", it's not what you think it is. Overall paying for birth control actually saves the government money because unwanted births and welfare cost government far far more.

    Except when the woman decides "I want a baby", the insurer --- who has been paying for the birth control --- NOW gets to pay for the pregnancy also. Who in the world would agree to be paying money no matter what at all times?

  • Devastator||

    NO! you will pay 0.00000000001% of it, and there's nothing you can do about it.

  • Uncle Jay||

    RE: Getting a Religious Exemption to Providing 'Free' Birth Control Just Got Easier

    "The Trump administration is following through on promises to roll back the Affordable Care Act's contraception mandate...

    I thought Trump and the GOP were going to repeal Obamacare.
    I stand corrected.

  • Crusty Juggler - Lawbertarian||

    Thank you Daddy Gov, for granting me an exception!

  • WakaWaka||

    Not imposing a mandate on someone is 'daddy gov'?

  • Chipper Morning, Mean Girl||

    Did you just ask Crusty out?

  • WakaWaka||

    A 'mandate"?

  • Old Mexican's Speedos||

    "Providing". Yeah, I love how stealing from someone at gunpoint is construed as a voluntary act.

  • Lily Bulero||

    You need a notice-and-comment procedure to obey the Constitution?

    Or maybe Trump is setting this rule up to fail so he can tell those icky religious fundy types, "oh, well, I tried, now go and re-elect me because I'm not a Democrat."

  • Lily Bulero||

    To which the proper response would be, "well, I tried to go vote, but I forgot it was on Tuesday."

  • ||

    Good. What's right is right.

    It's no...

    /dons sunglasses....

    Fluke this was done.

  • Bearded Spock||

    What you did there, I have seen it.

    *golfclap*

  • Ken Shultz||

    "Ever since it was adopted, the mandate had been the site of a religious freedom fight, as employers with faith-based objections to birth control argued that they shouldn't be compelled to subsidize it."

    Someone should point out that this is one of the mandates that would have been repealed or replaced along with ObamaCare.

    Every Republican who ever voted against repeal or replace should be ashamed of themselves, and that includes Rand Paul.

  • BYODB||

    If you say this often enough, maybe one day it will become true.

  • Ken Shultz||

    What did I say that isn't true?

  • BYODB||

    The part where you say that Republicans that didn't vote for a nationalized healthcare plan should be ashamed, specifically, although you don't need to rehash that opinion with me. I've already read it a dozen times.

  • Ken Shultz||

    So you quip Goebbels at me--suggesting I'm lying--but the "lie" is a question of opinion, at worst?

    I get the sense that you don't always think about what you write before you write it.

  • BYODB||

    I didn't use the word lie, I think it's more like you're desperate to see silver linings. Don't get me wrong Ken, I'm not trying to bash you or make fun of you. I know a lot of people with the same views.

    We've done this dance already. In my opinion if it doesn't touch community rating or guaranteed issue our healthcare system is doomed. Since those are now sacred cows even to Republicans, well, should we be satisfied with nibbles around the edges when we already know for a fact that costs are going to explode while access degrades?

    I say no, you say yes. Opinions will vary. Either way, the end of the line is single payer for both Republicans and Democrats so it's a pretty pointless discussion. I find it bizarre that you choose to bash on guys like Rand instead of the McConnell's and Murkowski's of the Republican party. You should realize after the past 8 years on this website that parties that suggest nationalized healthcare, of any stripe, are generally not popular around these parts.

    The chances of incrementalism working vanished the second the ACA passed. You don't treat a missing arm with a Band-Aid, or at least not yet.

  • BYODB||

    Oh, and as an aside I actually didn't intend for that comment to mirror 'The Big Lie', it was supposed to be more in line with someone who repeats a mantra to themselves that doesn't reflect reality.

  • Azathoth!!||

    Every Republican who ever voted against repeal or replace should be ashamed of themselves, and that includes Rand Paul.

    Why? We voted for Paul because he supported REPEAL. Not 'repeal and replace'. We don't WANT 'repeal and replace'.

  • Mickey Rat||

    But, as a practical matter, what we are getting is no repeal at all, and that is effectively what Paul helped bring about.

  • Ken Shultz||

    +1

  • BYODB||

    That assumes a fact not in evidence, that being that any of the varied republican plans repealed the parts of the ACA that effectively doom our healthcare industry. None of those plans thus far have done anything about the worst bits, even if some of those plans had a few window trimmings that people like Ken think are incrementally a good idea.

    Effectively, what Republicans did is they threw some sand down on the ground and said that they built a dam. Simply put, it was a lie.

    If you want to blame someone for not repealing the ACA, perhaps you should look at Mitch McConnell and Trump.

  • Mickey Rat||

    What we know, by his actions, is that no repeal at all is the situation Paul could live with.

  • BYODB||

    And we also know, through Republican actions, that repeal will never appear in any way, shape or form because they have conceded that healthcare should in fact be nationalized they merely disagree very slightly on the extent.

    So...your point is Politicians shouldn't do what they say they're going to do. Well, congratulations, you have 99 other Senators to look to for that. As a matter of fact, after 8 years of being told they'll repeal the ACA I'm looking around for a single bill that actually did that yet I'm finding nothing.

    This entire line of thought just illustrates that no one of principle can be in Government according to your preferences. (Well, and reality. I have my doubts that anyone in government, Paul included, are particularly noble.)

  • Mickey Rat||

    I am judging Paul's actions, not by his intentions, but by their results. The theoretical bill that Paul was holding out for would never get Collins', Murkowski's or McCain's votes and the current Democrat caucus are not breaking ranks to repeal the ACA. It simply does not have the support required. So what Paul ended up voting for was to maintain the ACA with all its mandates.

  • BYODB||

    Correct, so you choose to bash the guy that was holding out for what we should generally agree is the preferred outcome instead of...bashing the people that made sure such a bill would never pass.

    I note that neither one of you appear to lay any blame at the feet of so-called Moderate Republicans or Democrats. You only bad mouth Paul. That says a lot, in my view.

    It's ok, I still think Ken makes great points most of the time. We'll just have to agree to disagree here.

  • Mickey Rat||

    Paul was the subject. I have criticized McCain for his disingenuousness and recognize the Collins and Murkowski might as well be Democrats on these sorts of issues

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Technically, Republicans have not voted for straight repeal since Trump has been President so not voting for repeal and replace with garbage is not really a shaming event.

  • Ken Shultz||

    Rand Paul and the other Republicans who either voted against striking this portion of ObamaCare in the replace or repeal bills (among other things), shouldn't be ashamed of themselves--because although this section and many other turd sandwiches would have been stricken in all the bills under consideration, the repeal itself was no true Scotsman?

    That does not compute.

  • BYODB||

    Like the Republican party, you have shifted the goal posts on what is meant by repeal. Sorry, Ken, but it's true.

  • BYODB||

    Look, I think we can all agree that women don't have enough agency to make choices for themselves and they're basically children so we really need to provide things like birth control to them so their silly 'choices' don't impact the rest of us.


    /Progressive Feminist

  • Glide||

    "Hands off my birth control!"

    *takes hands off your birth control*

    "No leave your wallet though!"

  • loveconstitution1789||

    After ObamaCare passed and taxpayers had to pay for female birth control, I would advocate that women should buy men's condoms too since that is birth control too.

    Quivering lips is what I usually got. The idea that men's birth control would be as important as women's birth control never enters these lefties minds. If taxpayers pay for one they should pay for both men and women.

    Of course, taxpayers should not be paying for any government health care schemes. Just saying.

  • Brandybuck||

    The problem is that SOME ladies' birth control needs a prescription. Some of it actually does, like that eugenics one they give the feeble where they implant hormone capsules under the skin. (Seriously, still commonly prescribed to those with mental disabilities issues, one of the last vestiges of eugenics). But most of them should not need any prescriptions of any kind. So just make this stuff over the counter and the problem is solved.

  • BYODB||

    I think that the reason why they implant those is more along the lines of they're afraid that since the person doesn't really reason that well, if at all, than it will protect them from becoming accidentally pregnant since they have no concept of what that means. Sex is fun, even for retards, but they're not as able to figure out what the consequences might be or to frankly figure out how to use them. Obviously, that's one area where the individual case needs to be reviewed and let us not forget most of them don't have their own power of attorney or other standard things you would expect of an autonomous human.

    For the record, that's the same type of BC my fiancé uses and it's pretty bad ass, and no it doesn't last 'forever'. If it were eugenics related, we'd just go in there and cut some shit out like we did during that wonderfully progressive period of time when people with that type of disability were actually rendered sterile.

  • Mickey Rat||

    Shorter Bagley: "Ratchets only turn in one direction."

  • loveconstitution1789||

    At this point, Trump has done more to roll back government than I can remember without looking up all the specific things. Canceling Obama EOs and rolling back regulation is really all trump can do as president and at least he is doing that.

    RINOs in Congress are the ones holding up straight repeal of ObamaCare, tax reform, massive cuts to federal budget, etc.

  • Stalwart Sam||

    Agreed. I'm more than happy to take this win.

  • Tony||

    Didn't realize making government smaller meant filling the void with Jeebus.

  • Texasmotiv||

    Your argumentation style is quite impressive. Saying something so stupid it's hard to even parse where the logic in your dribbling non-sequitur even branched from how a working brain would have reasoned.

  • Tony||

    Just trying to figure out how a sop to religious fundamentalists = smaller government.

  • Slimer||

    I'm sure you are.

  • Stalwart Sam||

    Sop? I'm being sopped to?

  • XM||

    An employer who doesn't want to provide birth control to his or her employee for religious reasons - oh no, we're Saudi Arabia. But you're right in a way, religion shouldn't be a factor, no one should be forced to pay for someone's contraception.

    And some of these "fundies" don't morally object to paying for condoms or birth control pills. They don't like providing those abortion pills.

  • Sevo||

    Tony|10.6.17 @ 3:38PM|#
    "Just trying to figure out how a sop to religious fundamentalists = smaller government."

    Don't bother asshole; you're too fucking stupid to understand it if it was explained to you.
    Just fuck off.

  • Texasmotiv||

    The government forcing fewer things on people is smaller government. In what way is this bigger government?

    The imposition was forcing someone to but something they find morally reprehensible. Like if the government regulated you to buy all your employees a bible.

  • Tony||

    But only things people find morally reprehensible for certain specific reasons, such as invisible sky fairies speak to them. I can't find stop signs morally reprehensible and stop obeying them, right?

  • Slimer||

    Feel free to amend the Constitution. Until then, you're just kvetching.

  • Tony||

    The constitution has only permitted very specific instances where religious people don't have to obey the laws everyone else has to. Keep electing more republicans and that'll change.

  • Texasmotiv||

    A stop sign is a little different than being forced to provide something to you.

    Jewish delis aren't forced to serve you pork. If you made someone put that into the law it wouldn't be right either. I understand you don't believe in their religion. You are not in good faith looking at the other side of this. They are not violating someones rights by not paying for their pills. Thy are simply asking not to be a part of something they don't believe in.

  • Tony||

    Because we're talking about by-definition irrational beliefs, I can't figure out where we draw the line. In the past it was drawn to allow very small, specific exemptions for quaint little radical isolationists like the Amish. I don't want to invoke a slippery slope, but we're dealing with theocrats here.

  • Slimer||

    But you're not the arbiter of what is and is not rational so your opinion doesn't matter at all

  • Tony||

    "You don't get birth control because an invisible sky being said so, although I'm not exactly sure when and where" is not a hard call.

  • Slimer||

    And you're still not the arbiter of that.

  • BYODB||

    You're a lying cunt, women can buy their own damn birth control just like men buy their own fucking condoms.

    Jesus Christ, it's not like women are unemployed popping out babies at home. They have their own money and agency to buy the things they want.

    Make no mistake, Birth Control isn't medically necessarily it just lets people have sex consequence free without any planning whatsoever. Let us also not pretend that hormone pills are the only form of birth control in existence. Finally, and this is the big one, it's also not 100% effective.

  • damikesc||

    "You don't get birth control because an invisible sky being said so, although I'm not exactly sure when and where" is not a hard call.

    You are aware that literally zero employers forbid anybody from getting birth control.

    The issue is making the employer pay for it as a benefit.

    The employee is paid to work. They can use that pay to, you know, pay for birth control.

  • Sevo||

    Tony|10.6.17 @ 4:07PM|#
    "Because we're talking about by-definition irrational beliefs, I can't figure out where we draw the line."

    Don't bother asshole; you're too fucking stupid to understand it if it was explained to you.
    Just fuck off.

  • Texasmotiv||

    Theocracy is an odd word to use when we are talking about people making decisions about their businesses that they own.

    As soon as there is a push to ban contraceptives completely then I'll be right next to you, tony, opposing that. But it's not some new thing that Catholics don't believe in birth control. How do you think there are so many of them?

  • Tony||

    And I believe that the Catholic attitudes toward family planning constitutes one of the great global horrors of the last millennium. I don't think priests should get to touch children either. Being religious is not a free ticket to disobey the law. These exemptions should be very narrow, and Trump is broadening them for reasons of pandering. And we all know if the benefits being taken away were going to men, nobody would tolerate it.

  • Slimer||

    "And I believe"

    This is,what you keep missing. The 1st Amendment doesn't care what you believe.

  • Tony||

    Apparently it does so long as it's about birth control.

  • Slimer||

    No Tony, you. Not society. You personally.

  • damikesc||

    And I believe that the Catholic attitudes toward family planning constitutes one of the great global horrors of the last millennium.

    Tony|10.6.17 @ 4:07PM|#
    "Because we're talking about by-definition irrational beliefs, I can't figure out where we draw the line."

    At least you're consistent, Sparky.

  • BYODB||

    Shorter Tony: I'm against religion in all of it's forms, except for those beliefs of my own that mirror the same reliance on faith over reason. Those are totes kosher.

  • Lester224||

    On a practical level no-copay (it's not free because you pay for insurance) birth control results in fewer pregnancies and eventually lower insurance rates. It has a similar impact to no-copay annual physicals, no-copay statins for high-cholesterol (in most insurance plans) etc. If you agree that there should be no medications or devices with no-copay, then the stance that no-copay birth control shouldn't exist makes sense. If you think statins should be no-copay but birth-control should always have a co-pay, then you have some kind of religious issue with birth-control or you just don't think sex without pregnancy should be allowed. Both statins and birth-control prevent costly health conditions (heart attacks and pregnancy).

  • WakaWaka||

    I'm old enough to remember when libertarians were opposed to government mandates. Now, seems like libertarians have become rabid culture warriors and are totes fine with big government (so long as it's 'woke')

  • Mickey Rat||

    The question is not about should this be done, but must this be done backed up by a threat of government force.

  • Texasmotiv||

    If it were a net gain profit-wise I'm sure some actuary would have noticed it and in a free market insurance companies would offer the coverage. The problem comes when you start stripping away choices. It may be a net gain for the insurer is some cases but not others or the actuarial data could change over time as demographics and risk pools change resulting in the coverage being sub-optimal. Once it is regulated to be that way it removes the choice to tailor plans to customers in ways that would reduce costs.

    Removing this particular regulation isn't going to fix much other than it will remove the conditions causing people to sue the government for infringing on religious liberty as we have seen since these regulations started cropping up. There are still so many things in the way of these markets working apart from this that it's insane. In the end this is a temporary hat tip to the religious demographic, it can be undone as easily as the regulation it replaced. It's yet another pointless and senseless skirmish in the never ending culture war.

  • BYODB||

    Does birth control on my insurance plan have those effects when I'm not a female or married? Doubtful.

  • damikesc||

    Both statins and birth-control prevent costly health conditions (heart attacks and pregnancy)

    Except statins keep the body performing properly while birth control prevents that.

    Like it or not, pregnancy is the body working properly.

    And the pill has not led to a decrease in unwanted pregnancy by any study I've seen.

  • Tony||

    And the civilized world looks at us and wonders why on earth we'd carve a special exemption from the law for kooks who think birth control is a sin.

    Is this really what shrinking government looks like? Throw a kook a bone every now and then?

    Government agents in sunglasses sizing people up: "Hey, you look like a fucking insane person. I think you deserve an exemption to the law everyone else has to follow."

  • Bearded Spock||

    Time to take a break, Tony. Your comments are becoming more ridiculous than usual.

  • Mickey Rat||

    Does it ever occur to you that maybe this is not a matter that should be subject to a law?

    In fact, maybe you would not run into these problems if your side remembers that freedom of religion is something the government is supposed to be bound to respect and therefore should not be making laws that touch upon it.

  • Tony||

    But if you work for Hobby Lobby you get someone else's religion imposed on you.

  • Mickey Rat||

    I do not think that anyone is forced to work for Hobby Lobby, therefore "imposed" is a dishonest way to describe the situation.

  • Tony||

    Nobody is forced to own a Hobby Lobby either. People generally have to obey laws in a civilized society. You don't have to like the law that requires employers to provide birth control coverage, but that doesn't mean you have to endorse giving a special exemption from the law to religious employers. This stuff used to be contained to like the Amish. How far do we go allowing people to claim religious exemptions from following the law?

  • Slimer||

    "People generally have to obey laws in a civilized society."

    Except the 1st Amendment I guess.

  • Tony||

    This action is a slap in the face of the 1st Amendment. It's obviously and brazenly the favoring of one specific religious belief over others.

  • Slimer||

    Feel free to take that case to court then.

  • Tony||

    The ACLU is on it already.

  • Slimer||

    No, they really aren't.

  • GeneralWeygand||

    A-C-L-U You defend Hitler too....

  • Mickey Rat||

    The 1st Amendment is a law the goverment must follow. If the government does not follow the law, why should any citzen consider themselves bound to follow the law?

  • Sevo||

    Tony|10.6.17 @ 3:53PM|#
    "But if you work for Hobby Lobby you get someone else's religion imposed on you."

    Yeah, I noticed the guy with the gun forcing people to fill out employment applications last time I saw one.
    Fucking imbecile.

  • Tony||

    Also you don't have to defend something just because Trump does it.

  • Mickey Rat||

    I defend it because it is something that should be done to correct the violation of the Bill of Rights imposed by the Obama adminstration and tge congressional Democrats. That Trump is the one doing it is incidental, it is simply his job to correct his predecessorr's excesses.

  • Texasmotiv||

    You mean like forcing Gov buildings to include gender fluid bathrooms?

  • Tony||

    It's all culture war all the way down, isn't it?

  • Texasmotiv||

    I support people being able to express their first amendment rights whether that means not being forced to shave their beard in prison, not having to purchase contraception for someone, building as many different gender bathrooms as they want.

    I don't support the law forcing that on people. And I support allowing people to opt out of such laws that cause an undue burden on them.

  • Tony||

    To normal people birth control is part of the healthcare package, and an important one. It's important for society that it be widely available.

    This action sends a signal that a specific type of religious belief from a specific religion gets an exemption from the law because half of Republicans' political strategy is to pander to Christians. It's an anti-first-amendment act because it favors one type of religious belief.

  • Sevo||

    Tony|10.6.17 @ 4:15PM|#
    "To normal people birth control is part of the healthcare package, and an important one. It's important for society that it be widely available."

    We've seen all sorts of mangled logic from the lefty asshole, but this is a new one:
    "Appeal to stupid".
    Fuck off.

  • Tony||

    Normal is what everyone else is and you are not.

  • Slimer||

    I'm surprised there are still bigots like you who say "Normal "

  • BYODB||

    This just in: Tony hates Transgendered folks because they are less than one percent of one percent of the population and thus they are considered Abby Normal.

  • Slimer||

    "And the civilized world looks at us and"

    Immigrates.

  • Stalwart Sam||

    Ha! Good one!

  • XM||

    To be fair, the "civilized" society that exists in Tony's mind (like Sweden or something) doesn't immigrate to America as much. More than half the immigrants come from Mexico and South America. Puerto Rico was so civilized that only 30% of their national guard reported for duty after the hurricane.

  • Tony||

    Yes, obviously I was excluding Catholic countries, but didn't want to say it out loud.

  • Slimer||

    "Yes, obviously I was excluding Catholic countries,"

    Spain isn't the civilized world? Italy?

    Wtf?

  • Sevo||

    Remember how commie kid 'selected' a few commies to show that 'commies' were not all murderous thugs and then said 'commies' were good?
    Well, commie kid has nothing on Tony in the cherry-picking event.

  • Episteme||

    And...now he's simply resorting the 17th century antipopery?

  • Stalwart Sam||

    A fair point, but that was a good zinger. As for me, I know too much history to fall for the "civilized world" line, which has been invoked for everything and anything including bigotry.

  • Stalwart Sam||

    Replying to XM, of course and not Tony.

  • Peryno||

    Damn fine posting right there.

  • Sevo||

    Tony|10.6.17 @ 3:26PM|#
    "And the civilized world looks at us and wonders why on earth we'd carve a special exemption from the law for kooks who think birth control is a sin."

    The civilized world looks at you and wonders; 'how did anyone get so fucking stupid?'

  • ||

    'Civilized world'. Lol.

  • Old Mexican's Speedos||

    Re: Tony,

    And the civilized world looks at us and wonders why on earth we'd carve a special exemption from the law for kooks who think birth control is a sin.


    I have to wonder exactly why would you think forcing people to buy other people stuff is to be considered the hallmark of a civilized society.

    A kook may think whatever he or she wants, but just because YOU think birth control is a "necessity" does not mean your beliefs become justification enough to compel kooks to pay for someone else's birth control.

    "... I think you deserve an exemption to the law everyone else has to follow"


    I understand you're arguing against the exception but you're apply clumsy circular thinking when justifying the requirement "because the law says so."

  • damikesc||

    And the civilized world looks at us and wonders why on earth we'd carve a special exemption from the law for kooks who think birth control is a sin.

    When it mattered, the "civilized world" had no real problems with the Holocaust.

    Just as a reminder.

  • MayneDeWayne||

    You got a job? Buy your own birth control.

  • Magnitogorsk||

    Whether or not there is debate over a "religious exemption" to a law is a pretty good test of whether the law is bullshit in the first place. We would never even entertain the idea of a religious exemption for assault or theft. It's always things like using the wrong drug, wearing the wrong clothing, or arbitrary mandates like this

  • Robespierre Josef Stalin||

    I usually agree with Tony but here I differ. Douchebag fundamentalist CEOs shouldn't be required to provide for birth control. And the unfortunate employees in these shitty companies should form a Union and picket douchebag fundamentalist CEO's house on a daily basis-- alongside feminist affinity groups. Good luck firing them douchebag fundamentalist CEO.

  • Tony||

    Where is the line drawn? Can Christian Scientist employers claim an exception to providing healthcare coverage at all?

    Obviously I believe that healthcare via employment is a stupid way of delivering healthcare, and if we did it differently this debate would be moot.

  • Texasmotiv||

    I agree wholeheartedly with your second statement. Also if we did not decide to force religious business owners to buy coverage that include contraceptives then we wouldn't have these conflicts either. This is a fun new culture war battlefield since the ACA.

  • Robespierre Josef Stalin||

    I'm with you. Let's put health insurance companies on the ash heap of history.

  • Sevo||

    "Let's put health insurance companies on the ash heap of history."

    No, they provide a service. Let's put idiotic marxists and governments on the ash heap, idiotic marxist.

  • Mickey Rat||

    No it would not be moot as there are still the mandates on individuals.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    The concept of a government mandate to purchase a commercial product from evil corporations seems to be outside the scope in believing that corporations are evil.

  • Robespierre Josef Stalin||

    When you have an incredibly wasteful system for providing health insurance I would say the unfortunate answer is yes. The solution to me is good old fashioned collective action to change these companies or to put them out of business.

  • Mickey Rat||

    Yes, they should be able to. Of course, even under ACA they can, because employers are not required to provide health insurance. The government only micromanages if the employer decides to provide health insurance.

  • Tony||

    Fair point but we're only here because this stupid system is how most Americans get healthcare coverage. The birth control mandate was meant to ensure that this type of healthcare is cheaply available because for some reason it's often overlooked or disparaged as vital healthcare by people with penises who have all the power.

  • Slimer||

    That's probably because it isn't vital healthcare, except in a tiny fraction of the cases. And it's utterly affordable.

  • Tony||

    Tiny fraction? So you're ignoring the major one. If you were at risk of a human spontaneously emerging from your gut, you'd consider it pretty vital.

    Let me guess "Just don't be sluts!"

    What's most annoying is that we never talk about the really real subject, which is men still wanting to control what women do with their bodies. It's just barely dressed up in constitutional drag.

  • Mickey Rat||

    "Spontaneous" does not mean what you seem to think it means. There is a known cause and effect.

    I am sorry. That last bit is just silly.

  • Tony||

    "Just don't be sluts!"

  • Mickey Rat||

    If not considering the potential consequences of your actions is being a "slut", then yeah.

  • Tony||

    So not only are women burdened with the consequences in a way that men are not, they should be forced to pay extra for the privilege, and probably punched in the eye if they get mouthy.

  • Mickey Rat||

    Every adult is ultimately responsible for themselves and their own actions. to treat someone otherwise is to infantilize them.

  • damikesc||

    Tiny fraction? So you're ignoring the major one. If you were at risk of a human spontaneously emerging from your gut, you'd consider it pretty vital.

    It's what most people call basic biology.

    You act as if pregnancy is some illness. It's not. It's your body behaving the way it was designed.

  • Mickey Rat||

    And this system developed because of the perverse incentives toward employee renumeration created by FDR's version of War Socialism and the tax code ever since.

  • Tony||

    And the only reason it can't be changed is because of the industry that likes having so many captive customers.

  • Mickey Rat||

    But it is you who are arguing for a captive audience, one way or the other.

    Check your premises.

  • damikesc||

    The birth control mandate was meant to ensure that this type of healthcare is cheaply available

    $9 a month hardly seems expensive.

  • damikesc||

    Where is the line drawn? Can Christian Scientist employers claim an exception to providing healthcare coverage at all?

    An employer is always free to offer no health insurance whatsoever,

  • ||

    Oh, there's a surprise. Lefty commie shithead assumes CEO's are evil and that the proletariat should protest to have things forcefully given to them.

    Eat shit.

  • damikesc||

    I usually agree with Tony but here I differ. Douchebag fundamentalist CEOs shouldn't be required to provide for birth control. And the unfortunate employees in these shitty companies should form a Union and picket douchebag fundamentalist CEO's house on a daily basis-- alongside feminist affinity groups. Good luck firing them douchebag fundamentalist CEO.?

    It's traditionally that hard to find replacement labor. Unless the government blocks it, of course.

  • Haha, charade you are||

    Good. Now repeal more regulations to let them go OTC with generic options, truly granting woman available access to affordable contraceptives.

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