For those of us who are firmly in the pro-choice camp – that is, who believe that the woman’s choice reigns supreme when it comes to her own body – the election of Barack Obama was quite a blow. We were paying attention to the way he claimed women should consult a committee (of men, of course) before she made her choice about her own reproductive status. We noticed that he did not pick a new HHS secretary for quite some time after his inauguration, which meant that Bush’s “conscience rule” has been in effect since the end of last year – and although the 30-day comment period expires today, the right-wing fundiegelicals seem to be the only ones commenting. They are screaming to the high heavens that Obama should not roll back the rule because they feel otherwise they will be “discriminated against.”
I have news for the meme-meisters of the evangelical movement. The government telling my doctor or pharmacist that they don’t have to inform me of all of my options regarding my own body, or that they have the right to deny me health care or birth control is discriminatory TOWARDS ME. This “conscience rule” keeps women in the dark, and prevents them from getting medical procedures and prescriptions that they paid for. To meddle in the lives of women and their loved ones to this degree is an inexcusable use of government power.
Besides, in order to prove discrimination, wouldn’t these “Christian” doctors have to prove some kind of harm was caused by rolling back the rule? Believe me, they do not want to play this game. The harm endured by a woman who is forced to bear her rapist’s baby, or bear any unwanted child, is lifelong. The “harm” endured by a doctor or pharmacist who is “forced” to do his or her job, the job for which he or she is paid, is simply non-existent; and here’s why.
When I am in a situation that troubles my conscience, I get out of that situation as soon as I can. When I take a job that starts to trouble my conscience, I quit. I would expect a medical professional who has such tender feelings and strong principles to hold him or herself to that same standard – especially one who claims to belong to a “moral majority.” Since the doctors who are protesting this rollback don’t seem willing to take this step, it seems pretty clear that the rightwingers are simply using this latest meme to further the same old agenda: to continue to maintain their control over womens’ bodies. Is anyone surprised?
It is almost laughable to see how the fundiegelicals, over and over, take the very tactic they are using – discriminating against a woman because she wants to control her own body – and loudly insist that it is being used against them. It would be truly laughable…if it didn’t work every single time.
So be forewarned, ladies and gentlemen who believe in a woman’s right to choose her own reproductive fate. With Barack Obama in the White House – the man who is expanding Bush’s faith-based initiatives and forwarding his 3 a.m. phone calls to his Dial-a-Pastor line – – the separation between church and state is becoming more and more blurred. We haven’t had a friend in the White House since 2000.
We still don’t.
And it stinks.