HHS Moves to Define Contraception as Abortion


Read the full text of the leaked HHS proposal here (PDF).

In a spectacular act of complicity with the religious right, the
Department of Health and Human Services Monday released a proposal that
allows any federal grant recipient to obstruct a woman’s access to
contraception. In order to do this, the Department is attempting to
redefine many forms of contraception, the birth control 40% of
Americans use, as abortion. Doing so protects extremists under the
Weldon and Church amendments. Those laws prohibit federal grant
recipients from requiring employees to help provide or refer for
abortion services. The "Definitions" section of the HHS proposal states,

Abortion: An abortion is the termination of a pregnancy. There
are two commonly held views on the question of when a pregnancy
begins. Some consider a pregnancy to begin at conception (that is, the
fertilization of the egg by the sperm), while others consider it to
begin with implantation (when the embryo implants in the lining of the
uterus). A 2001 Zogby International American Values poll revealed that
49% of Americans believe that human life begins at conception.
Presumably many who hold this belief think that any action that
destroys human life after conception is the termination of a pregnancy,
and so would be included in their definition of the term "abortion."
Those who believe pregnancy begins at implantation believe the term
"abortion" only includes the destruction of a human being after it has
implanted in the lining of the uterus.


The proposal continues,

 

Both definitions of pregnancy
inform medical practice. Some medical authorities, like the American
Medical Association and the British Medical Association, have defined
the term "established pregnancy" as occurring after implantation. Other
medical authorities present different definitions. Stedman’s Medical
Dictionary, for example, defines pregnancy as "[t]he state of a female
after conception and until the termination of the gestation."
Dorland’s Medical Dictionary defines pregnancy, in relevant part, as
"the condition of having a developing embryo or fetus in the body,
after union of an oocyte and spermatozoon.


Up until now, the federal government followed the definition of
pregnancy accepted by the American Medical Association and our nation’s
pregnancy experts, the American College of Obstetricians and
Gynecologists, which is: pregnancy begins at implantation. With this
proposal, however, HHS is dismissing medical experts and opting instead
to accept a definition of pregnancy based on polling data. It now
claims that pregnancy begins at some biologically unknowable moment
(there’s no test to determine if a woman’s egg has been fertilized).
Under these new standards there would be no way for a woman to prove
she’s not pregnant. Thus, any woman could be denied contraception under
HHS’ new science.

The other rarely discussed issue here is whether hormonal contraception even does
what the religious right claims. There is no scientific evidence that
hormonal methods of birth control can prevent a fertilized egg from
implanting in the womb. This argument is the basis upon which the
religious right hopes to include the 40% of the birth control methods
Americans use, such as the pill, the patch, the shot, the ring, the
IUD, and emergency contraception, under the classification "abortion."
Even the "pro-life" movement’s most respected physicians cautioned the
movement about making these claims. In 1999, the physicians–who, like
the movement at large, define pregnancy as beginning at fertilization–
released an open letter to
community stating: "Recently, some special interest groups have
claimed, without providing any scientific rationale, that some methods
of contraception may have an abortifacient effect…The ‘hormonal
contraception is abortifacient’ theory is not established fact. It is
speculation, and the discussion presented here suggests it is
error…if a family, weighing all the factors affecting their own
circumstances, decides to use this modality, we are confident that they
are not using an abortifacient."

As the HHS proposal proves, the absence of fact or evidence does
not slow anti-abortion movement attempts to classify hormonal
contraception as abortion. With HHS’ proposal they have struck gold.
Anyone working for a federal clinic, or a health center that receives
federal funding–even in the form of Medicaid–and would like to
prevent a woman from accessing most prescription birth control methods
has federal protection to do so. As the HHS proposal details,

Because the statutes that would be enforced through this regulation seek, in part, to
protect individuals and institutions from suffering discrimination on
the basis of conscience, the conscience of the individual or
institution should be paramount in determining what constitutes abortion
,
within the bounds of reason. As discussed above, both definitions of
pregnancy are reasonable and used within the scientific and medical
community. The Department proposes, then, to allow individuals and
institutions to adhere to their own views and adopt a definition of
abortion that encompasses both views of abortion. (emphasis mine)


So HHS proposes that anyone can enforce his or her own definition
of abortion "within the bounds of reason." And, it would seem the
bounds are pretty far flung. Most dangerously, perhaps, this new rule
establishes a legal precedent that may eventually be used as a basis
for banning the most popular forms of birth control along with what is,
in fact, abortion.

We have more on this story in our feature series Contra-bortion? 

Or you can see all of our extensive coverage on the proposed HHS regulations.

Like this story? Your $10 tax-deductible contribution helps support our research, reporting, and analysis.

  • invalid-0

    Daily it seems that Big Brother (bolstered by the religious right) strives to take decisions away from citizens and put them into the hands of politicians AND the American people let them. Orwell envisioned the Big Brother of 1984 appearing in Europe but instead, the state once known for its progressive and positive perspective has morphed into a monster bent on reducing its citizenry to idle consumers incapable of independent decision-making.

  • scott-swenson

    Cristina,

    Brilliant as always. The "spectacular act of complicity with the religious right" that you describe the Bush Administration proposing is breathtaking, but as you know and have written, not at all unexpected for anyone who has been paying attention to what has really been happening in the "pro-life" movement.

     

    The question now is, will Americans get this yet, that the far-right has really used the issue of one medical procedure, abortion, to mask an agenda that seeks to redefine not only reproductive health and women’s rights, but all sexual relations, based on their singular definition of what is right or wrong.

     

    This is a sure sign the lame-duck Bush Presidency is ready to make a break for the exits, as they start proposing things like this they wouldn’t have had the audacity to do earlier, now hoping people are so distracted they will not notice. It is also a sign that the far-right sees the hand-writing on the wall in this election and recognizes it won’t have access to power like this again, perhaps for a generation if ever, so they are doing a smash-and-grab, trying to steal whatever policies they can get before their beloved President leaves town, they lose their plum jobs close to power, and are once again seen as the 17-20 percent of the electorate they really are.

     

    Are these really the values of the vast majority of Americans? Or those of an increasingly nutty fringe that cannot recognize the advances for women, families and children, the economy, and our culture, brought about through the ability to plan families.

    Be the change you seek,

    Scott Swenson, Editor

    • invalid-0

      I just hope you all channel your frustration and outrage about this issue to vote for Obama and encourage others to do so.
      I was today at a meeting with what I thought were progressive people, and several of them were still considering voting for McCain/Palin who are ultra pro-life.

  • invalid-0

    And, the irony is, today, Bush said we were “smart enough” to cut back on driving without Washington’s interference….

  • invalid-0

    Catholic anti-contraception advocates have labeled some “artificial” birth control methods as “abortificient”, since the methods may directly or indirectly result in the nonimplantation of fertilized eggs, even if the methods act primarily by preventing ovulation or fertilization and nonimplantation is rare.

    However, by this definition, the “natural” birth control methods permitted by Catholics are also abortificient, and, probably, more abortificient than many or most “artificial” methods. The “rhythm” methods consist of confining sexual activity to the periods of the month when the woman’s uterine lining has not developed, and therefore is much less likely to allow implantation. Ovulation usually occurs timed with development of the lining, but, when it does not, rhythm-permitted fertilization will usually result in a nonimplanted egg.

    The other “natural” method commonly used is lactation. Lactation inhibits ovulation and the monthly development of the lining of the uterus, and can be extended over many years from a birth, providing extended birth control. Hormonal birth control mimics this method, and functions similarly. But lactation is not completely effective in preventing ovulation, and becomes less effective with time, and the lack of a fully developed uterine lining would then make implantation unlikely; the method is intrinsically “abortificient”.

    In contrast, the dosages applied in hormonal birth control can be developed to prevent ovulation with near certainty, and maintained at that level. Nonimplantation of fertilized eggs would then be very rare; the method would then be much less “abortificient” than “natural” birth control. Most artificial birth control methods, of course, do not affect
    implantation at all.

    • invalid-0

      My friend,
      I must inform you that your information is inaccurate. First off, the “rhythm method” is severely flawed and no longer utilized. The “Catholic” methods of “birth control” promoted today (Natural Family Planning or NFP) do serve as effective methods of planning a family.

      This isn’t the time/place for a discussion of how NFP works –I’ll leave that up to you to correct yourself :), but I’ll note that NFP is not only highly effective at accurately planning fertile periods (thus allowing a married couple the opportunity to achieve a pregnancy), practicing NFP is strongly correlated with improved communication between spouses, lower rates of infidelity and divorce, and provides a married couple a powerful aid for planning the course/development of their family.

      It is difficult to argue for modern contraceptives in light of the many negative physical consequences associated with their use. For a moment, please disregard the arguments using God or religious beliefs that many have attempted to post; I believe the increased risks of life-threatening blood clots, bone loss, frequent and substantial bleeding, heart attack, stroke, breast/cervical cancers, and death scream a much louder warning. You can argue the moral implications of using birth control or not, but you cannot argue against the number of deaths associated with birth control use each year (ignoring the number of deaths by abortion that may have occurred due to using artificial contraceptives). Moral implications could be strong factors encouraging or discouraging contraceptive use; however, the negative physical effects are much more *tangible* and serve as highly undesirable consequences of our human desire for sex outside the protective bounds of a committed, faithful marriage relationship.

      Sincerely,
      Clint—Abstinence Education Lifestyle Instructor

  • invalid-0

    so sperm and egg cells have more rights than people?

    • invalid-0

      I was just thinking that. That and what next? Are they going to say that women can’t menstruate and men can’t ejaculate because it’s killing half a baby?

      And where are these fanatics when the unwanted baby is born? Where are they when the person cannot feed the child and they are given up for adoption after the adoption-desirable infant stage? Why do they find it okay to KILL doctors yet cry abortion is murder?

      Or what about the fact that a fetus is the same for all animals up until the late stage of the pregnancy?

      If you want and planned for a child, that’s a beautiful thing. If you don’t and tried not to have a child but still wanted to have the normal, natural, healthy experience of sex (get over it people, we’re human and it’s part of life) pregnancy isn’t a “punishment”. Are you in the dark ages? People should have the right to prevent it with any form they see fit and or have an abortion if that is what they need. No matter my personal belief I will not tell anyone they can’t have control over their own bodies.

      I think if we, as Americans, stopped being so puritanical and ridiculous about sex and talked openly about it in schools and society, and taught people about how to be safe and healthy about it, we’d have less of these bullshit discussions.

    • amanda-marcotte

      More rights than women.  Who aren’t "people" in the sense that men are.

  • invalid-0

    This is just one more reason why we must not elect John McCain President. These people are nuts and won’t stop till they have total control over our bodies. Enough is enough and hopefully we can save this sinking ship that is America. Thanks for bringing this to our attention.

  • invalid-0

    Scott,

    I find it ironic that the quote you display in your on-line signature, “Be the change you seek”, was from Ghandi who was an avid “pro-life” advocate.

    Gandhi expressed these views in a book which he personally wrote called Birth Control: The Right Way and the Wrong Way (Ahmedabad: Navajivan Press, 1959). Gandhi wrote:

    “It seems to be clear as daylight that abortion would be a crime.”

  • invalid-0

    I have not found ANYTHING about this on an nuetral site (or even the HHS site)… why is this? Scare tactics by the writer of the blog? Is this proposal even accurate, or did someone take a few words out of context and is trying to create an uproar?

    In other words… SOURCE PLEASE.

  • invalid-0

    Gandhi wrote lots of religious nonsense. He also wanted to ban cow slaughter and turn India into vegetarian teetotaller(non-drinking) country.
    Thankfully India as a secular country not only permits but subtly promotes abortion(to control population explosion). In India there are virtually no restrictions on abortion apart from age of foetus.

    • invalid-0

      Not meaning to offend but India doesn’t know what to do with sewage much less the people. Nice people as a whole, very low crime I hear as they are very serious about “Karma”.
      And another thing, even if they “ban” abortion they will do what they did before it was legal, and call it a D&C or a theraputic abortion (back in the 30′s and 40′s)
      Most people who support abortion is because they haven’t had one. Try it sometime, let it haunt you for the rest of your life. There are times when they are necessary, very true, but the majority that are done because “ya got caught”… We all need to take responsibility for ourselves. Women are so damn desperate for a man, I see it all the time. We need to take care of ourselves and our psyche and be healthy inside and out. By the way taking the pill is unhealthy, messes up your hormones no matter what anyone says. Don’t believe the FDA. Too many deaths from drugs today. Stay Healthy & Happy Everyone, no matter what your religion is.

      • http://www.cedarriverclinics.org/ invalid-0

        I and the majority of my coworkers at a reproductive health clinic *have* had abortions. And we support a woman’s right to choose, without judgement and with as little restriction as possible. None of us, to my knowledge, are “haunted” by the decisions we have made or the work we do. In fact, we are proud to help women exercise their right to choose, even when it is a hard decision to make. We never seek to influence her decision or perform an abortion when the woman is unsure. And we sleep very, very well at night.

        • invalid-0

          The problem with the few women who are
          haunted by their decision to have an abortion
          is they want to haunt the rest of us,
          who made a responsible decision. Grow up,
          move on, and deal with it!

      • invalid-0

        You seem a little off the subject here with
        India and Ghandi, women are desperate for a man,
        pill is unhealthy. The issue is that the Bush
        Administration is using their Evangelical ideas
        to influence policy, and it is just down
        right wrong, and I myself am a Born again
        Christian. I would never want to hve an abortion,
        but I would not want to deny another woman
        the choice. Men are still the major policy makers
        in American Govt. If men were raped, became
        pregnant, were underpaid, were discriminated
        against in the work……..you better believe
        abortions and birth control would be
        protected rights of the individual.

      • invalid-0

        My Youth, Reader’s Digest Version:

        I was an upper-middle-class caucasian girl. I had an allowance of $80/month, which covered spending money and a generous contribution to my kiddie-savings account.

        I was raped multiple times by a family friend as a young teen. I did not report these attacks, because I was a naive middle school student, and the man made threats against my younger sister. I was denied birthcontrol until the age of 15, when an older friend provided it to me. It was too late. I became pregnant by my attacker, and underwent an abortion. I have a common blood condition, which makes the risk of clotting a real problem during a pregnancy. However, I would have elected to have an abortion without this added incentive. My abortion was not late-term.

        My pregnancy is a result of both my attacker’s talent for psychological torture, my failure to alert authorities, and my lack of access to birth control.

        Despite complications in my private life, I continued to work hard in school, work part-time at a local grocery store, compete in dance meets, play the saxophone in the marching band, and win top awards on the school debate team. I went to college on a full academic scholarship. I graduated at the top of my class and with over 230 volunteer hours. Now I am attending law school, also on an academic scholarship.

        One thing you may find missing: I don’t have bad dreams. I don’t rock myself to sleep in the fetal position.

        I have a cup of tea while studying, pull the covers back, set my alarm, and doze off just like everyone else. Sorry to disappoint you, but I am a well-adjusted young woman. I could have died from that pregnancy. I would have missed a great deal of school. My GPA would have fallen, and I may not have been able to attend the university I went to. My aspirations were more important and comforting to me than continuing the genetic line of a violent, sickly, and sexually deviant man.

        My life is better because I had an abortion. My life is back on the track it would have been on without the obstruction of a sick old man.

        If I were to be in the same situation now, I would not have been allowed to have that abortion, because my parents’ consent would have been required (and denied).

        The laws in my state regarding parental consent changed after my first year of college. My father voted for this addendum. My mother did not, because I explained exactly what that would have meant to me, my hopes, and my dreams. She has had a change of heart. Although my father loves me and is proud of my accomplishments, he believes that the choice I made was his to make.

        I believe it was mine, and mine alone.

      • invalid-0

        You state:
        “Most people who support abortion is because they haven’t had one.”

        That is a very sweeping and ignorant statement.

        And “ya got caught” is like saying it is a woman’s fault.
        Last I checked it takes 2 to copulate and thus possibly reproduce.

        And here are my words:
        I have had a Legal Abortion and that at the age of 15.
        I know I would not have been a good parent period at that age.
        I dealt with it and all the myriad of feelings you have from an abortion because it certainly is a emotional thing. And I was and still am at peace with that decision. I am Pro-Choice all the way.

        They do have counselling for those who have had an abortion.

        I am *not* for the use of abortion as birth control.

        I am a radical feminist and pro-choice for All the women’s sakes, including my 3 daughters.

        I am in a monogamous marriage and my husband had a vasectomy. We are mutually glad we still had That Choice.

        If I were ever to get pregnant at my age (mid 40′s) & with my health conditions I’d have an abortion because I know that I cannot carry a child and it or I be healthy.
        My Choice. Powerful words that.

        I am not hiding under Anon & am not concerned if this offends. As I prefer honesty and open-ness.

        You certainly do not seem to hold the people of India in high regard with your remark on sewage and their beliefs in Karma. You come across as condescending to others not “you” or like you IMHO.

        A disregard for cultures is as bad as a disregard for human rights IMHO.
        Abortion is to me amongst Human Rights.

  • invalid-0

    Why is it that this opinion by the HHS is all about words and not about actual reality? Maybe it is lawyers vs scientists, but more likely they are just revealing their intellectual roots by playing the same sort of word games creationists (and theologians) so love.

    It really shouldn’t matter at all whether we call the blocking of implantation ‘abortion’ or not. By going off into the various possible definitions of pregnancy they are just avoiding addressing the actual issue at hand. Does an unimplanted zygote reasonably constitute a being/person who a reasonable medical resource provider could object to harming on ethical grounds.

    Of course, IMO it is entirely unreasonable to hold such a view. The number of naturally occuring incidents of failed implantation is almost certainly staggeringly high. Just as the early term miscarriage rate is very high. Only by totally ignoring how pregnancy happens in reality can someone maintain the delusion that fertilization (and even implantation) confers some highly special status.

    Anyway, tripe like this opinion from HHS reveals itself clearly by not directly addressing the central issue at hand. Appealing to polling data (where the public at large is worse than ignorant, they are actively mis-informed) is another sign of dishonesty. Nothing quite like spreading mis-information and then appealing to the ‘wisdom of crowds’ to support your erroneous position… Iraq War anyone?

  • invalid-0

    So if I have a moral objection to doing my job, my employer should still have to pay me? Where does this principle end?

  • invalid-0

    Gandhi also drank his own urine. (He thought it was a healthful practice.) I will refrain from suggesting that you go and do likewise, Anonymous.

  • invalid-0

    Yeah, that’s the ticket. “I have a moral objection. I have the right to sit this [insert onerous task here] out.”

  • invalid-0

    This is just another act of the petty criminal absconded in our failing nation’s executive-office for the past 8 terrible years.

    Not content to have brought the nation to its very knees already, this adolescent marauder will do all he deems possible to further set the US back into the stone age.

  • http://www.homelanddecency.com invalid-0

    My wife and I found these idiots so annoying that we wrote a political satire “The Department of Homeland Decency: Decency Rules and Regulations Manual” to make fun of them. It shows what happens when religious nuts get too much power. The book is available everywhere. http://www.homelanddecency.com

  • http://momsspeakup.com/ invalid-0

    I used it as a source and quoted (with cite source) some of your points in my own article for our blogzine’s readers.

    I read all 39 pages and am amazed. It more or less institutionalizes religion as the basis of health care decisions. That’s not medicine, that’s Scientology.

    My largest concern is that there is no provision protecting PATIENT RIGHTS, only health care provider *individual* rights. Who will provide the LEGAL care the patient wants?

    My article is at:
    Moms Speak Up

  • brady-swenson

    At the top of this post you will find the full text of the leaked HHS proposal – it is the primary source. But the story has been picked up just about everywhere else. But to quickly name a couple, I think it broke in the New York Times and I saw a segment on MSNBC last night. The reason you are not finding it on the HHS website is because the proposal was not yet intended for public consumption – as is stated in the PDF document linked above – it was leaked by an objector in HHS prior to becoming an official proposed rule change.

  • invalid-0

    Great idea.

  • invalid-0

    I would like to know how his precious daughters have stayed prego-free for their adult lives. What a jerk.

  • invalid-0

    Lactation only prevents ovulation in cases where access to fats and other nutrients is restricted – it shouldn’t be depended on by anyone in the US.

    Also, hormonal birth control works by telling the body (via synthetic hormones) that it has already ovulated, not by telling it that its lactating. Otherwise, drippy boobs would be a more common side effect.

    You’re correct, however, in that most artificial bc doesn’t affect implantation.

    • invalid-0

      Lactation prevents ovulation in cases where it is used regularly without bottle feedings and while nursing continues through the night, even with a healthy, well fed women. Myself and multiple other women I know have had a long term lack of menses due to lactation. Other women I know have still gotten their periods, but generally because they did not follow ‘the rules’ (just like with the pill)

  • invalid-0

    If pharmacists can deny me access to birth control, will they also deny men erectile disfunction meds? Why do they get meds allowing them to have sex whenever they want but I can’t protect myself from them? I though religion and state were supposed to be two separate things. Why does a religion I don’t subscribe to seem to think they need to control my life anyway?

  • scott-swenson

    Or even how he and Laura just had the one set of twins. Did they only have sex once and just got lucky? Before any changes are made by politicians to birth control — they should be forced to divulge which — if any — birth control they’re families have used.


    Be the change you seek,

    Scott Swenson, Editor

  • invalid-0

    I read through this article, as well as the NYTimes article and watched the clips I could find on MSNBC, and have to say that sounds pretty horrifying.
    Sadly, the last time I wrote to my Congress person on reproductive rights I received a snippy email back about how he doesn’t have time to listen to the biased ramblings of a fringe group. You know, like WOMEN. >:\

    • invalid-0

      Are you also “represented” by Jim Bunning?

  • invalid-0

    By logical extension of the HHS proposal, and it is just a proposal to rule changes, those who feel medical treatment contravenes “gods will” should not be descriminated against when they let you die in the emergency room from some disease or accident. This kind of thinking is crazy and it needs to be placed in this context. I personally think it’s great they are showing their hand finally. It has always been about control of reproduction not the right of unborn. We are but livestock (sheep) and who are we to decide our fates.

  • invalid-0

    Well, men drive. Women make birth control decisions.

    Right?

  • invalid-0

    Many people forget that birth control is also used to control a woman’s cycle . . . kind of like how Levitra and Viagara are actually used to control heart conditions. There is an important alternate use for this medication whic would ultimately hurt those women who eventually want to reproduce to regulate their bodies . . .

    • invalid-0

      I see a bit of both sides of this. I do not believe in abortion, but I also need birth control because I have pcod (Poly Cystic Ovarian Disease.) A genetic disease that affects women and is one of the leading reasons for infertility in the us.

      I’m not saying that nothing should be done about this. Men will be just as furious as women. Though I don’t think we need to be slandering Christians for this. It seems that everyone can blame the Christians for their troubles. Politicians are blinded by power, and if they can find an escape goat for their troubles they’ll use it. Like the Germans blaming their troubles on the jews, it seems we’re heading in the same direction. Not in such extremes, but that’s not to say Christians are getting spit upon for things that some of them didn’t even do. Instead of blaming the matter on Christians, as humans shouldn’t we take this matter and deal with it logically? One person said to the other this, do you agree with them or disagree?

      Just as our forefathers wanted, for us not to bring religion into political matters of mortal problems. Those who founded the country were Protestants, Catholics, and I would assume maybe a couple Atheists. Still our country shouldn’t be ruled by one religious factor, or it’ll turn into the bloody wars that Britain had when ever they tried to turn from a Catholic ruler to a Protestant Ruler, and visa versa. That’s why in our country we’re lucky enough to be able to have our own religion. As it is our right shouldn’t it be our obligation to be the best representatives of our own religion? Shouldn’t we show some responsibility and give each other a little breathing room?

      Then there’s the matter of the birth control. Since birth control is used mostly as a contraceptive, it’s being miss used. If a girl of 15 doesn’t have a medical reason to use birth control, but her mother wants her to take it anyway. Would you approve of that? Instead of teaching your children self respect and the power of saying no, should we just say, “Hey here’s to no babies pill, go out and have fun with all that sex!” How’re girls going to respect themselves when they’re older and become women?

      It’s the same thing for the morning after pill. “Oh you had lots of sex last night and didn’t use a condom, well it’s we have this magic pill.” That’s not going to teach them the pride in being able to push back and say no I can wait. Pills aren’t 100% anyway.

      Still at the same time, if your daughter at 15 is having paralyzing cramps, and can’t barely stay in school because of them. Then a doctor needs to investigate the problem, and a doctors say, “Well I just don’t know.” Should never be good enough. The doctors answer should never be, “It could be this or this, but here’s this until we find out.” That’s their excuse to start saying, “Well I’m going to try and wean as much money out of you as possible, and I’m gonna be a bit lazy about my real answer.”

      I’m not saying that all doctors are like this, but some are. Though birth control can be used for great medical reasons, it can also be used for rather useless ones as well.

      I believe that yes we shouldn’t have to lose our contraceptives all together, but I doubt the government would allow that in the first place. Still I think this is trying to talk about the promiscuity of our own country. In the matters of keeping ones legs crossed our country isn’t doing so well. Men and women a like.

      Men have no excuse and women have no excuse. A college kid thinks it’s ok to rape the drunk girl on her couch, because he has a hard on and he’s plastered. Of course that’s ok right? No one will know everyone else is drunk. A young man can drink a few beers and still have enough conscience about him to know about his moral values. Women want to blame the pressure that they’re under to have sex with men.

      A boyfriend continually insists with his girlfriend that they should make love, because she’d let them if she really loves him. It’s of course her fault that they can’t be closer in the relationship. A woman as sexual urges just like men do. Still if a man’s trying to push it on his girl or pull some lame move like saying that they should break it off because he just can’t get close unless he’s had sex with a woman. He’s not worth any womans time. A woman should not make a man a priority when he makes her an option.

      Still this is all about excuses. Of course it’s not your fault, you have this marvelous excuse. If you look at all the excuses, they all turn out being rather lame. It all ends up with, “Wow… I’m kind of an idiot aren’t I?” That’s not to say that people can’t make mistakes, just don’t look through your file of excuses to keep on making the same one in different ways. If sex was bad the first time, maybe you shouldn’t do it anymore.

      We’ve really become a country of people that want to make excuses for ourselves. Because it can’t be our own faults. I threw the vase at the door because my boyfriend slept with his ex. Well that’s one way to get rid of your anger, but now you not only no longer have a pricey vase, but you have a mess to clean up too.

      Truthfully in the eyes of the world, we look like a rather pathetic country. Some countries send the young men here so that they can have all the sex they want before going back to get married. Almost all the attacks brought upon our own country are because they think we’re weak. That’s not to say they are pardoned for their actions. We’ve shown them we are a country united, the question is, why can’t we remain such a blindingly powerful image? Instead of blaming politicians for our problems why don’t we look at our problems square in the eye and conquer them one by one? Instead of giving an excuse care from our excuse cabinet, and look at only half the problem. Anyone can talk, but lets be some real Americans and puts some Action in with ours words? Lets let the government know in anyway shape or form how we feel about these matters. Read up, research everything. It is our public right to question our government. Instead of whining lets do something real! Our government is bendable so we can change it anyway we need to! So lets bend the hell out of it until EVERYONE is satisfied with an appropriate answer! Something that will appease both sides of this problem, instead of one side giving in to the other!

      • invalid-0

        It’s not all Christians,per se just a small percentage who want their personal religious beliefs put into law and shoved down everyone’s throats. As the saying goes “Lord, please protect me from (some of) your followers.”

        Then there’s the matter of the birth control. Since birth control is used mostly as a contraceptive, it’s being miss used. If a girl of 15 doesn’t have a medical reason to use birth control, but her mother wants her to take it anyway. Would you approve of that? Instead of teaching your children self respect and the power of saying no, should we just say, “Hey here’s to no babies pill, go out and have fun with all that sex!” How’re girls going to respect themselves when they’re older and become women?

        Now,here is the first bogus part of your post. Absolutely NO evidence has been found to prove use of birth control promotes promiscuity. Teens have a lot of peer pressure to have sex, some girls think if they have a baby they’ll have “something to love”, “if it’s really love, I won’t get pregnant”, yadda,yadda,yadda. Self respect means you think enough of yourself to use protection. Ten years after that 15 year old girl starts using birth control, she’s more likely to think “I’m glad Mom insisted I learn to use birth control “just in case” the pressure to have premarital sex became too much. Now I’m a college graduate and have a great job; while those girls who didn’t use BC because they bought the anti-contraception movements lies are high school dropouts with no education,no decent job and no future. Just a lot of kids they struggle to take care of.”

        It’s the same thing for the morning after pill. “Oh you had lots of sex last night and didn’t use a condom, well it’s we have this magic pill.” That’s not going to teach them the pride in being able to push back and say no I can wait. Pills aren’t 100% anyway.

        Bogus again. Not even the “morning after” pill has been proven to increase promiscuity. Even if the Pill isn’t 100%, it’s still better than hoping no pregnancy will result. Plus, it’s helped a lot of rape survivors. “That creep’s assault was horrible, but with the evidence from the rape kit, I hope he’ll soon be behind bars. Thank God for emergency contraception, now I know I won’t get pregnant because of what that jerk did.”

        Still at the same time, if your daughter at 15 is having paralyzing cramps, and can’t barely stay in school because of them. Then a doctor needs to investigate the problem, and a doctors say, “Well I just don’t know.” Should never be good enough. The doctors answer should never be, “It could be this or this, but here’s this until we find out.” That’s their excuse to start saying, “Well I’m going to try and wean as much money out of you as possible, and I’m gonna be a bit lazy about my real answer.”

        Supposition. You don’t know better than the doctors who prescribe BC.

        I’m not saying that all doctors are like this, but some are. Though birth control can be used for great medical reasons, it can also be used for rather useless ones as well.

        Bogus again. What evidence do you have to back that up?

        I believe that yes we shouldn’t have to lose our contraceptives all together, but I doubt the government would allow that in the first place. Still I think this is trying to talk about the promiscuity of our own country. In the matters of keeping ones legs crossed our country isn’t doing so well. Men and women a like.

        Telling people not to have sex is ridiculous at best, and insulting at worst. What consenting adults do in the privacy of their bedrooms – even if they boink all night – isn’t any of your damn business.

        Truthfully in the eyes of the world, we look like a rather pathetic country. Some countries send the young men here so that they can have all the sex they want before going back to get married.

        Where do you get this crap? If you look at the the attitudes other countries have towards sex, you will see they have very healthy ones. Unlike our rather schizoid views. We are turning out a generation of kids ignorant about sex due to abstinence only sex ed; yetour own administration cuts funding for programs aimed at reducing teen pregnancy. Sex is idealized as this beautiful thing everyone must wait to be married before having;yet we tune in TW shows, rush to see movies, and read magazines that use sex to push a story along or sell products.

      • invalid-0

        Why do you equate waiting for sex as some form of ultimate virtue or a definition of respect for oneself as a woman?

        We are all sexual beings regardless of your personal feelings that premarital sex = lack of respect for one’s body. Sex is fun, it’s a bonding between partners, married or otherwise. A joy of the modern age is the freedom from constant pregnancy, early death, and crippling poverty that come with uncontrolled birth.

      • invalid-0

        I find it interesting you profess to be on “both sides” and argue that Catholics or Christians are not to be blamed for these idiotic policies. And then you go on to criticize us for being a country of sexually loose men and women, because we do not wait until marriage (a religious ritual) to have sex with someone. I would argue that in this case, you are using your religious views (no sex before marriage) to judge me, and tell me that because I use birth control strictly for contraceptive purposes I should not be allowed to take it, by LAW. This makes the law line up with your religious views, am I right? So what part of this shows me that the Christians are not the ones to blame for pushing these oppressive policies on me?

        I also encourage you to explore how the puritanical mentality about sex has affected the behaviors of this country. The “taboo” nature of sex combined with the proliferation of it in movies, tv and ads makes us totally schitzo as a country and results in dangerous and irresponsible sexual behavior. Think of it like the way we treat alcohol in this country – None until you’re 21!! sure you could go to Iraq and die before then, but it’s so dangerous you can’t have it until we think you’re old enough! In countries where alcohol is less demonized and the drinking ages are lower, there are MUCH lower rates of binge drinking, drunk driving, and alcohol-related deaths because people are exposed to it as an early age and learn to be responsible. If sex were discussed openly as part of human nature, would we have kids experimenting unsafely and at such a young age? I doubt it. With the mystery removed, it doesn’t become something we’re so perversely obsessed by.

        I also welcome you to explain to me why we should not talk about or educate our children about sex. To me, and I’m sure many non-Christians, it seems like something you’re not supposed to do because “we said so”. Could it perhaps be a moral code drawn up by the early patriarchs of the church to ensure that males could be sure of the children they fathered with their wives? Almost everything religous once had a social or political function…many of which have become outdated (do not wear mixed fibers…stone the adulterous, etc). Educate me as to why religious laws that dictate sexual behavior are still “correct” and how other countries benefit from enforcing these laws.

        How about you live your life the way you see fit and refrain from judging people who live differently…isn’t that one of Jesus’ teachings?

        Also, it’s not “escape goat”. It’s scapegoat…although that did give me a smile.

      • invalid-0

        I first had sex at 17; I happened to be in love with and want to make a deeper commitment to a man I’d been seeing exclusively for two and a half years. Why are you assuming I don’t respect myself? Maybe for you, there’s pride in saying no, but don’t assume that applies to the rest of us.

      • invalid-0

        Screw you, Kris.

        First, not everyone believes that having sex before marriage is a Great Tragedy. According to a recent study by the Guttmacher Institute, 95% of Americans have sex before they get married. You’re telling 250+ million people that their personal choice to have sex is Wrong and that therefore their taking responsibility for their reproduction (by using contraceptives, which 98% of Americans also do at some point)is therefore Immoral and a Cop Out?

        What’s more immoral, to use birth control or to bring an unwanted, unloved child into the world? Gee, let me think here.

        Second, what, are my husband and I not supposed to have sex because we neither want nor can afford children at this point? Are we taking the easy way out because I use hormonal contraception, use condoms when the occasion warrants, and have a stockpile of Plan B for when when we think that other contraception methods might have failed?

        Excuse me, but your personal squickiness with sex outside of marriage has and should have no bearing upon the availability of contraception to those who don’t share your views.
        /end rant

  • invalid-0

    This item was mentioned in my local rag, The Vancouver Sun, (British Columbia), today (Wed., July 16). It was just a short snippet, a couple of column inches, but it was there and the details were similar to what we read here.

    One difference though is that HHS is not mentioned, rather, the article refers to “a Bush administration memo that defines several widely used contraception methods as abortion and protects the right of medical providers to offer them.”

    It’s got sources, in other words. Seems real.

  • invalid-0

    Since HHS has now determined that it cannot be proved that a woman was not pregnant, and IRS regulations say that if you lose a child in a given year you can claim a dependent deduction, it follows that all women are eligible for 12 child exemptions per year or $39,600. How will this administration square these numbers?

  • invalid-0

    Institutions have a “conscience”? Who knew? Next these “individuals or institutions” will decide the woman doesn’t have the right to say “no” in the first place.

  • invalid-0

    And any female going through ‘that time of the month’ aborted an egg that should have been fertilized and performed an illegal abortion upon herself.

  • invalid-0

    Is this the US and are we in the 21st century? This proposal is yet another betrayal by this administration. There are several other secretive changes that were made under this administration that negatively effect women’s health by refusing some needed health care to women on Medicare and Medicade. Are women once again second class citizens? Yes, it effects women the most, does that make it ok? We women have men in our lives too.

    • invalid-0

      Which God? The Pro-Abortion one or Obama?

  • invalid-0

    Of course lactation as a birth control method is not an option for people who have not had nor do not ever have the intention of having a child.
    As far as I know that is still a right left to women. Or is that right not an option for Catholic women?

  • http://fredtopeka.wordpress.com invalid-0

    This part of the definition:

    “any of the various procedures — including the prescription, dispensing and administration of any drug or the performance of any procedure or any other action — that results in the termination of the life of a human being in utero between conception and natural birth, whether before or after implantation.”

    also might get rid of miscarriages, since any miscarriage could be because of some action.

  • invalid-0

    This came up in the 2004 election when one of the networks found a “document” and it turned out to be an internet fraud. I don’t trust it. Even if it came from HHS, how do we know they’re not playing games?

  • invalid-0

    following up on JohnL’s comment, b/c there is no test for fertilization, any sexually active woman of child producing age could be pregnant during a few days a month an not know. hence, they could argue that a woman shouldn’t be allowed to, say, drink or smoke or do anything else that might risk the pregnancy during that time. best to keep women inside, protected from what they might unknowingly do to themselves and their unborn blastula.

    • invalid-0

      Best just to keep them sedated from age 13 to age 49. Then you don’t have to worry about them doing dangerous stuff. *sarcasm*

  • invalid-0

    Or as McCain might say, “Where is that marvelous ape?”

  • invalid-0

    I would put more stock in your comment if you at least had the courage not to be anonymous.

  • invalid-0

    We can talk about this all day and not affect a thing. What can we do to prevent this from happening–other than with our vote in September?

  • scott-swenson

    No need to see irony where there is none. It is possible to have respect for a person and not agree with everything they do, or expect them to conform to your beliefs either. It is also possible to acknowledge the historical context in which a person lived and not presume that their beliefs, or even my own, would translate into different cultures and moments in time.


    Be the change you seek,

    Scott Swenson, Editor

  • invalid-0

    Maybe George Bush, Sr should have used more birth control and saved us all!

  • invalid-0

    Don’t we have Freedom of Religion? And therefore, should we then NOT be forced to follow a “specific” Religion’s oppression?
    Sounds like a Constitutional violation to me.

    Why are all these freaks so obsessed with controlling complete strangers. Why don’t they use their time constructively by volunteering at children’s shelters and help those who are in our realm who really need love, attention and motivation? Instead they waste their time prancing around clinics with their stupid signs.
    Hypocrits.

  • invalid-0

    There is a big difference between a draft NPRM and a final regulation. Where is the proof that this draft is an actual copy of an HHS leaked document? Furthermore, this draft has more to do with the conscience clause than any of the material that you have printed here.

  • invalid-0

    Who flagged this person’s comment. I’m guessing that person didn’t get sarcasm. *rolls eyes*

  • invalid-0

    That you have any evidence that this is an actual NPRM text that has been through the clearance process or (OMG) been printed in the Federal Register? Or is this just another one of your gasper pieces that has had no verification or vetting and could as easily as anything else be the vaporous pantings of someone who can use the formatting functions in Word?

    Never mind the fact that you are applying your very own special interpretation of the text which (surprise) supports your own over-hyped version of “Big Brother”.

    Sheesh. Take a course in Critical Thinking and get back to me, OK?

  • http://www.scarleteen.com invalid-0

    When something like this is fraudulent, I think we’d generally expect a denial from the feds, no?

    That doesn’t appear to be what’s happening: http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/presidentbush/2008/07/abortion-draft.html

  • invalid-0

    A better proposal would entail that any entity receiving Health and Human Services funding must require all medical personnel to sign a statement that they will not discriminate against women by denying them birth-control treatment.

  • invalid-0

    All in all, abortion and everything else we do is an individual,PRIVATE decision that should be left alone. I resent having my pocket picked to fund any stranger’s choice. Keep the governmnet the hell out of what we do in our bedrooms or with whom we make contractual agreements. These laws and definitions are meant to add another stratum of distraction in a system so tied up in turbulence and pretense. I guess every age has a Tower of Babel.

    Rose

  • invalid-0

    A male ejaculates? Is it safe to say a few abortions are simultaneously occurring? How is it different? Or is that the ‘sacred feminine’ thing?

  • invalid-0

    But you’re not allowed to ejaculate outside of a vagina, it’s wrong.

  • invalid-0

    HHS Secretary Mike Leavitt
    Office Phone: 202-690-7000
    Email: mike.leavitt@hhs.gov
    Fax: 202-690-7203
    Correspondence Secretary: 202-690-6392
    (Anyone outside of the DC/metro area can call 877-696-6775 toll-free and ask to be transferred to the Secretary’s office.)

  • invalid-0

    Many would have you believe that this means that the govt is restricting the rights of a woman to have contraception. In fact, the way I read it, this does the opposite.

    Yes, the wording shows that any federal grant recipient can choose their stance. What’s good about this is that for every organization that chooses to restrict access, there will be organizations that choose to GRANT access.

    It’s up to those organizations that take a more open stance to ensure that there is available access for women to visit their organizations.

    Women want the right to choose when it comes to contraception and abortion. This wording also gives organizations the right to choose.

    We cannot have choice for women and then not allow choice for organizations. That would be a very two-faced stance. Everyone should be granted the right to choice.

  • invalid-0

    I was wondering the exact same thing.

  • invalid-0

    I take birth control for exactly this reason. If I don’t take it, my periods become very close together and I end up losing entirely too much blood for my health.

    It’s amazing how anti-choice groups DON’T consider this in their campaigning…could it be because they’re not women and not medical professionals? Probably.

    • invalid-0

      I have three friends with the exact same issue. One would have periods that would last 16 days at a time!

  • scott-swenson

    Kathy K.,

    The organizations that would rather adhere to their own personal views should not apply for federal grants from a government that must adhere to principles of pluralism. The federal government has no role in imposing any one belief over another, but in a pluralistic democracy must make space within the law for a range of beliefs to be respected. More importantly, there are such things as medical facts and provable science. The government does not have the right to redefine contraception based on ideology, which is what is being proposed.

    The choice is for people who have beliefs that are different to practice those themselves, and not try to use our democracy to infringe on the rights of others. Your right to believe that contraception is wrong does not trump someone who believes it is right from getting that contraception from an organization that receives federal grants.


    Be the change you seek,

    Scott Swenson, Editor

  • invalid-0

    The thing is, though, is that the women this regulation will effect don’t have a choice – they’re on Medicaid and Medicare, or are uninsured and receiving care via a safety net provider. Heck, I have employer-paid health insurance and I just found out that my coverage just doesn’t happen to cover birth control. Luckily, I’m able to use my prescription coverage to pay a portion of the cost of my Nuva Rings. I’d rather have an IUD, but I can’t afford the $1000+ uncovered cost. And I hold a bachelor’s degree and a stable, well-paying, white-collar job.

    When grantees receive public $$, or when pharmacists and the like must hold a state-issued license to practice, that’s a tax-payer supported privilege, NOT a right. The state is a secular entity that must not allow any religious belief to intrude on its policy-making. If certain individuals’ beliefs prohibit them from doing what a job requires, they must, in good conscience, seek other employment. Alternatively, they can choose to render unto Caesar that which is Caesar’s. They don’t seem to have a problem paying taxes that support a life-ending war.

    This is merely misogyny and bigotry shielded by a bogus claim of “religious rights.” This kind of dishonest discrimination isn’t being publicized. Kathy, I’d like to know why these pious bigots aren’t proudly proclaiming their retrograde beliefs with clear signage and the like. Risk of profit loss? Desire to prosyletize and humiliate women? Too busy getting off on the idea of indirectly contributing to an unwanted pregnancy? Very telling.

  • invalid-0

    Sweet! Now I know what to do if I need some extra cash. *rolls eyes*

  • invalid-0

    I think one of the scariest parts is this is based on “that 49% of Americans believe that human life begins at conception.

    Isn’t this supposed to be a democracy based on the will of the majority?

  • invalid-0

    All of the Comments on this page are great. It is wonderful that this issue impact people. I personally am against this memo, and I am strongly against the government telling me when I can or cannot start my family. Women are not cattle and decisions based on their health should not be made by bureaucrats. And, just to rant,,, If you are an anti-choice person, you should also be in opposition to all wars and the death penalty.

  • invalid-0

    I can only guess that introducing Sharia law will be next. Maybe if we’re all covered in burqas and not allowed to be around men who aren’t relatives (or have any other rights) we’ll be *safe*.

  • invalid-0

    Yes, I agree that it seems like Big Brother is taking away a lot of our decisions, but I disagree that it is bolstered by the religious right (I assume you are mostly referring to conservative christians). Many Christians have had many of their rights taken away as well, and many more are being targeted (homeschooling being one). So please don’t blame the “fanatical Christians” for taking away your opportunity to manage your life the way you want. Politicians as a whole (including democratic and republican) are doing that.

    • invalid-0

      Homeschooling is a Conservative Christian right? Wow. I guess my Atheist Libertarian best friend who homeschools her 3 children and my Agnostic Democratic sister-in-law who homeschools her 5 kids weren’t aware of that!

  • scott-swenson

    Lynn NoE,

    I certainly understand your perspective, but when it comes to health care, I’d hope that there would be an even higher standard than majority rule, science. We should all hope that our personal health and safety is not subject to the whims of politics, though clearly that’s just been a hope for far too long.


    Be the change you seek,

    Scott Swenson, Editor

  • scott-swenson

    Allison, you say "conscience clause" as if that is something that should be supported. The proof that this is even being considered within a (small d) democratic government is shocking enough. There is ample evidence from this administration to believe they are promoting this. On all of these issues, see today’s piece from former Food and Drug Administration Assistant Commissioner for Women’s Health, Susan Wood.

    Be the change you seek,

    Scott Swenson, Editor

  • invalid-0

    When it comes to those types of percentages on polls there is normally a margin of 2-12% undecided. Also they have a margin of error up to I think +/- 7%, I apologize it has been a while since I was in Statistics, so my information here is probably bogus. Hey at least I am honest.

  • invalid-0

    Personally, I tend more towards advising towards adoption, but if a female chooses abortion, it is her choice. As a male I am fundamentally flawed on the pro-choice/life debate. Btw I also believe that the herd of the world needs to be thinned out anyway and I support wars that have reasons behind them… such as taking over areas with high amounts of resources and using those resources to supply a nation with cheaper resources, also I support the death penalty, actually as one comedian said, ” I support death week.”

  • invalid-0

    If contraception that prevents implantation is redefined as abortion, and abortion is made illegal–then condoms could also be made illegal. A condom prevents fertilization and therefore prevents implantation. This new rule, if adopted will inevitably lead to tremendous increases in HIV and other STD transmissions, and a huge increase in unwanted children. They will not all find loving homes. This proposed rule is a disaster which will lead to tremendous human suffering, tremendous increased demand for food to feed all the unplanned children, and tremendous increased demand for healthcare for all the children and for all the infected people who would have been protected from infection if they had legal access to condoms.

  • invalid-0

    I am not sure if everyone is aware that Health Care workers have ALWAYS had the “right to refuse.” At hire, a form is filled out that asks if you object to participating in any procedures based on religious and/or any other view. This is most important for abortions, withdrawl of life support and administration of blood products. All of which can cause morale objection. If you state that you do not wish to participate in the procedure, you are not required to. This is a personal decision.

    I can see the fear that this bill is preparing to make a “legal leap” in determining when conception acutually occurs and I can also see that this is a bill that protects worker’s rights. I would like to read the acutal verbage to determine for myself (it seems difficult to get my hands on with all the opinions).

    IMHO it appears to be allowing institutions to make individual decisions about when conception begins and then provide guidelines for employee protection when they wish to not participate in “an institutuionally decided procedure.”

    Now, tack on that these programs ARE federally funded. Did you know that there are so many regulations to receiving a federal grant that they need to know the RACE and SEX of every person involved? This is part of the discrimination act (EOE).

    As a health care professional I see it as nothing more that enforcing a worker’s right. I do not see how this could limit access to care, destroy birth control, abolish abortion, or any of the other fears.

    Maybe I am not so much into the conspiracy theory that the government is out to destroy life as we have MADE it…

  • invalid-0

    Really? Seriously? Outlaw Condoms?

    I think many people need to put on their “thinking caps” here and think about it.

    I do not see this as outlawing ANYTHING and the assumption that it will just makes people CRAZY…Just like silly statements like this.

  • invalid-0

    I am not sure that anyone on this board has ever been present at an “ethics board meeting.” To say that personal or ideological views MUST NOT infringe on institution policy is IMPOSSIBLE for the medical field.

    Induvidual decisions are made for these reasons. All of us believe something different. Should we then have a “pro-choice hospital, pro-life hospital, muslim, jewish, catholic etc.?” Then you may only attend the place that you KNOW conforms to your set of beliefs. Catholics (of which I am) do not wholly agree on birth control, the death penalty, etc. But, it is still an organization I belong to because I believe in many other parts of the church.

    It is the JOB of a health care institution to provide care to everyone based on a set of mission statements. There is not an organization in this world that is “black and white” and requesting them all to be could certainly leave all the femanists and pro-choicers out in the cold along with the conservatists and pro-lifers.

    The lines must be drawn in the MIDDLE of the road to make an honest attempt to accommodate every given situation with the highest regard and respect for the individual!

  • invalid-0

    I suggest everyone read the proposal. This blogger is distorting what the true intent behind the proposal is- protecting those in the health care system who morally opose certain practices. It’s 32 pages, but if you go to page 16, you’ll see the definition that was quoted. Read past that and it will explain the reasoning behind using a broad definition for this “rule”. The HHA does not seem to be trying to define contraception as abortion, but are merely trying to protect those who are morally opposed to administering and/or prescribing it from being forced to do so.

  • invalid-0

    their samples are often too small to be very relevant. An example is a Badger Poll about teaching creationism in schools. The Pro-ID crowd got really excited about this because a majority of respondants wanted to see intelligent design/creationism (they are basically the same thing) taught in public schools. But in small print at the bottom of the newspaper article, the sample size was only about 852 adults in one particular area of Wisconsin.
    So my stance is, you are likely to get similar results to most polls by sacrificing a goat and interpreting its steaming entrails.

  • http://www.rhrealitycheck.org/comment/reply/7707 invalid-0

    I am a 28 year old woman who up until 2 years ago, never took birth control or believed in it. Yet, when I found out I have massive ovarian cyst, my doctor recommended the pill. The ovarian cysts were causing my horomone levels to be so off balance, which in turn caused me to get extreme menstrual cycles twice a month, once, or sometimes not at all. My menstrual cycles would make me so sick for the first day or two, that I could not move, would throw up, and have to call into work. Try telling your employer, once a month that you can’t come into work because you have your period….ya, doesn’t really work. I don’t think no one really ever knows how bad some women experience it. And trust me, I have a very high pain tolerence.

    I went through several doctors to find out what the problem was, as well as several trails of natural and medicinal drugs, home remedies, such as hot pads, working out, drinking milk, eating this or that…the usual “Dr. Mom” kind of stuff, before even attempting birth control. I felt like a guinie pig.

    Since I have been on birth control, my horomone levels have evened out, my ovarian cysts are smaller, and deteriate on their own(so I don’t worry about them exploding), and I am not severly sick(which allows me to work straight through the year). So, let me ask you this, if you take this away from me, or raise the cost for those who need it…how are you helping those who are really using it for medical purposes?? Where are, OUR rights? Do you have a back up solution to fix my medical problem? Because if you do, I’d be glad to try it, and see if it works just as effectively….

  • invalid-0

    … or just from a woman’s perspective? This news is huge, but it’s nowhere to be found on the front pages of Yahoo, New York Times, etc.
    I’m another one of the many women who needed the pill to regulate my hormones and prevent the irregular and super heavy cycles I had since I was a child. I was unable to move without throwing up for a day or two, then for another week or more ‘just’ in terrible pain and losing more blood than I could replace each month. Anemia and other problems developed. My grades dropped. Men would be cranky, too, if that happened to them, especially if they were told it’s in their head, or that they were harming fetuses in they attempts at relief.
    “Women’s” issues are more important than all the front page items in today’s news. There are slightly more women than men in America, so why don’t we dominate the system? Instead we have infantilized today’s girls and act like they are too stupid to look after themselves, but that their main purpose is to be sexy. Seems like in the media both men and women are just torn down and insulted.

  • invalid-0

    Then why, when they’re finally pinned down for an explanation of their motives, do they always resort to saying that it’s against God’s will?

  • invalid-0

    Okay, Anonymous, suppose you’re right. Taking away my rights has nothing to do with the Christian right. Then whose fault is it? The big corporations don’t care about my body, they just care about money. The only people lobbying for less contraceptive use and no abortions are the right-wing Christians. The rest of us don’t give a crap. And it’s Christian views being foisted off on the rest of us. You don’t see the Hindu or Buddhist perspective on the issue very often, now do you? You need to pull your head out from under the covers and wake up. This is a religious issue, and YOUR religion is the one heading it. I know for sure MY religion doesn’t care what I do with my body.

  • invalid-0

    health care providers who hide behind religion to avoid doing their jobs? Calling this a proposal to protect refuseniks is simply distracting the public from a simple fact “Conscience clauses” are just a fancy name to shield those who engage in medical discrimination. (It’s called “framing and caging”) That is neither professional or ethical.

  • invalid-0

    I also take birth control to regulate my cycle and alleviate the debilitating pain that comes for about 3 days each month. Without BC I’d be forced to bear this pain while at work, teaching, or take sick days I desperately need to save for real illnesses. Since doctor’s don’t take my pain seriously and continue to prescribe ibuprofin, which doesn’t work (and besides I can get it over the counter whenever I want – I pay the doc to give me something I CAN’T already get in every local pharmacy and convenience store) BC is really my main method of pain control. Why do these government officials want me in pain? I’m not even having sex! And even if I were, it’s none of the government’s damn business what I’m doing with my own body.

  • invalid-0

    It is funny that you chose to reference big brother here, when actually, this action by the HHS is giving people More choice not less. Your perspective seems to be that choice is okay, as long as it agrees with your choice.

    The article loosly defines ‘contraception’ and includes methods like the morning after pill that some people consider abortion. It also describes pregnancy in an indeterminate way. Neither one of these positions is a line in the sand, so I would think you would agree to let people follow their consciences rather than a Big Brother mandate from the State which agrees with the most extreme pro abortion position.

    The policy actually grants more freedom rather than less as you propose, and your proposal would result in Less rather than more.

    • invalid-0

      To Anonymous:

      I work in a Title X family planning clinic. More freedom? More choice? You are simply in denial about the reality of the current scene in reproductive health and how the current administration has systematically, for the past 8 years, chipped away at accessibility, choice and reproductive rights.

      Significant funding cuts for comprehensive family planning services, combined with increases in abstinence only funding, and now the proposed HHS changes that will allow employees to make or affect patient choice is simply NOT OKAY!

      FYI, the Morning After Pill works exactly the same way as oral contraceptives, the patch, the vaginal ring and the shot … so the new HHS proposal would jeaopardize all those methods … not just MAP.

      How about a new program that takes the focus off with lots of funding that promotes vasectomy for sexually active men. I wonder how that would go over with regard to choice! It would certainly eliminate the debate about when life starts … no sperm, no fertilization!!!

      • invalid-0

        I completely agree with you. Women are always the ones who are victimized when it comes to family planning and contraceptives but yet men are encouraged to have sex with all these Cialis and Viagra commercials. It is absolutely ridiculous! Men are just as responsible for pregnancy as women are. There should be funding for vasectomy for men, why not? Birth control and pregnancy prevention is a responsible move to make upon sexually active individuals. It is not a choice that should reside with anyone other than the individual. McCain hasn’t even claimed a position on this (so we know where he is probably at), Obama already signed the letter against this move. http://www.moveon.org/r?r=4042&id=13467-9513891-s8qZKBx&t=5

        Let’s make sure this Bush shit doesn’t continue, vote Obama

    • invalid-0

      No this action gives people less choice. Mandate from the state that allows the most extreme pro-abortion position gives far more freedom. No one is forcing you to have abortion, you can follow whatever methods of birth control, abortion (or lack thereof) that your conscience dictates. This action puts the choice in the hands of an intermediary who decides whether you actions are birth control or abortion and thus whether you deserve finacial support or not.

    • invalid-0

      More like double-speak! Allowing health care workers, researchers, policy-makers, medicare- and medicaid-workers to control MY choice by forcing their beliefs on ME, is not increasing MY choices. It is taking away my right to make decisions and chooices affecting my body and my life and giving it to someone who is only at most tangentially connected to my life. When did it become OK for your beliefs to control my life?

    • invalid-0

      Isn’t it odd that the only conscience Anonymous has considered is the one that only effects the life of another. The only opinion that matters is the “care givers”. After all, the patient is only some woman. Obviously not a true christian, who is paying for a service, dependent on the “care giver” who will probably get paid by some insurance company anyway and has no motivation to do anything other than sanctimoniously sit there and collect money for denying service. May God protect us from his followers.

    • invalid-0

      Isn’t it odd that the only conscience Anonymous has considered is the one that only effects the life of another. The only opinion that matters is the “care giver”. After all, the patient is only some woman. Obviously not a true christian, who is paying for a service, dependent on the “care giver” who will probably get paid by some insurance company anyway and has no motivation to do anything other than sanctimoniously sit there and collect money for denying service. May God protect us from his followers.

  • invalid-0

    ‘splaining to do. How exactly does allowing certain health care workers to hide behind religion to excuse medical discrimination equal “more choice”?

    The article loosly defines ‘contraception’ and includes methods like the morning after pill that some people consider abortion.

    There is the “weasal words”, . What some people (like the Bush Regime and its anti-choice base) think is irrelevent. Medical science doesn’t define contraception as abortion. This proposal is religious/political idealogy masquerading as medical fact.

    It also describes pregnancy in an indeterminate way. Neither one of these positions is a line in the sand, so I would think you would agree to let people follow their consciences rather than a Big Brother mandate .

    Another problem with “conscience clauses” is they allow one person have the power to deny another medical procedures or medication they need. This proposal seems to be saying the “conscience” of an anti-abortion nurse, or an anti-contraception pharmacist is somehow sacrosanct as opposed to the conscience of the patient.

    • invalid-0

      Don’t let all this political BS fool you!!!!! Providers of health care are trained to be “nonjudgemental” and to put their own beliefs aside and keep them in check when giving/allowing the patient to make their own autonomous decisions about their health and bodies. This is what the majority of health care providers learn to do!

      I’ve been in the field for almost 30 years and it standard operating procedure that providers are NOT suppose to IMPOSE thier own morals onto their clients. Again, we are trained that this is wrong and can be detrimental to a patient!!! Understand this big government and the rest of the world too!!! For the sake of the patient, we are constantly reminded to keep our values out of the way of the patient’s – whom generally knows what is best for them over what we think is right for them.

      We are suppose to be culturally sensitive and we have a choice where we work and what we do in the world of health care —- if health care providers (nurse, pharmacist, doctor) can’t agree with providing contraception – then they need to remove themselves from that situation and go find something else to do if they can’t live with letting the patient have something they personally wouldn’t want.

      There is NO REASON why patients should be burdened with someone elses value system aka: religious view. There is no place for this in the patient:provider relationship – NONE! Providers can get fired or sued over that kind of crap.

      As a health care provider you accept this when you get into the field, then you decide if you are going to work in an area where your own personal ideology conflicts with the care you MUST provide. IF you can’t take the heat – get out of the kitchen.

      This is POLITICAL and it is RELIGOUS based argument and as such really has NO BUSINESS IN the public receiving good HEALTH CARE. The government needs to stay out of it!!!!

      I believe in God, I support and provide contraception, and until every woman/man has easy acces to birth control (which they do not now)-then I am forced to believe a patient has the right to choice because she/he has been denied access to prevention of pregnancy in the first place. And NO other health care provider has the right to tell me what I can and cannot do because of their beliefs.
      By the way – I lean conservative – but this topic is so freakin’ ridiculous that it’s unbelievably wrong.

      • invalid-0

        Well said!! Could you imagine if a doctor refused medical care to a patient because of a personal ideology?? Lawsuits, loss of license, the whole nine yards. But somehow if that ideology happens to be against birth control, that is ok to project onto patients? It makes me so upset and fed up with this administration AND the lack of outrage from the population! As our government creeps towards a religious regime, the lack of action is startling.

      • invalid-0

        then I am forced to believe a patient has the right to choice because she/he has been denied access to prevention of pregnancy in the first place.

        Every woman has access to prevention. It’s called abstinence except in the case of rape (obviously). Don’t get me wrong, this ‘rule change’ is totally absurd. I do not support it in any way. However, women and men DO have an ultimate option. Abstinence. I know it’s wishful thinking to believe that people would actually commit to this alternative; still it remains the simplest way. Tubal ligation and vasectomy are other alternatives that prevent conception from even being a possibility.

        I personally am a woman who is completely against abortion with the exception of extreme medical necessity such as loss of life for my self or child and incest. Fortunately I never had to face any of this. I do not see rape as an appropriate excuse for abortion. The opportunity to turn tragedy into joy for another family through adoption can be a great salve for the raped soul. Note, I said “CAN BE” not will be or is.

        This doesn’t mean that I agree that contraception is the same as abortion. That’s just stupid. I have a tubal and I have a close female relative who was healed by the child she gave up for adoption as a result of being raped. I can not claim that tragedy as my own. I do not know what an abortion feels like nor can I speak for those who do. I have been against abortion since I heard that such a thing existed, somewhere around 4th grade. And not as a result of my familial beliefs either. I learned later in life that my mother had had 2 abortions one before I was born and one after me. That was her choice as it is yours. It is not right for me. I do not presume to tell you what to do with your body. I am simply telling you what is right to me for my body.

        This is my right. Neither do I need nor expect you to agree with me. I’m sure some of you will proceed to ‘bash’ me anyway because I disagree with “woman’s rights”. That wouldn’t be true. Women are equal to men and equally responsible for what they do to and with their bodies but only to the point that it does not come across another human’s right to existence. But that’s fine, bash away. It’s your choice and freedom. For now. Some day it may not be if proposals such as these are allowed to exist and continue.

        Where this ‘rule change’ is concerned, has anyone pointed out the ABSOLUTE guarantee that our population WILL explode uncontrollably and the medicaid/DHS/WIC programs will completely founder under the weight of this growth? Do they not realize that this will inevitably lead to federally enforced vasectomy and tubal ligations (most likely after the third child? Do they not realize that they are headed down a road very similar to China’s issues with overpopulation where we will be limited to 2 children then 1 child per family. Or worse it could lead to being required to submit a credit check and work history to be ‘approved’ to have a child? To the point where a child will become a ‘luxury item’ rather than a life and experience to be cherished?

        Or is that the plan?

      • invalid-0

        I just have one question for you – if health care workers are trained to be “nonjudgmental” why have I been denied birth control pills (that I need for endometriosis) at three different pharmacies in central PA? PA has a law stating that pharmacists can choose whether or not to dispense birth control. Two of the three times the prescription was ready, but the pharmacist asked to “verify my address”. Once I verified my address (which was my mailing address at a small, liberal arts college), I was told that I could not have my prescription. I told them I needed the prescription for a medically documented disease and I was told that I could appeal the decision – it should take 4-6 weeks! Obviously, that would be up to a month and a half that my future fertility could be threatened by endometriosis! I had to go to the campus clinic and get the wrong brand of birth control pill just so I had something – resulting in stomach cramps, headaches, and bad mood swings. If the politicians want to bring God into this decision, why should I suffer for a disease that God gave me, and that God helped people create a cure for, just because a pharmacist believed I was going to go out and sleep with every guy on campus (or something like that!). If this “rule change” is allowed I assume this discrimination (which I finally got away from by driving 45 minutes to the nearest city to pick up my prescription) would be widespread in the US. I wish that health care providers were actually nonjudgmental, but since humans as a race cannot be nonjudgmental, I’m going to have to say many health care providers will be tempted to bring their personal beliefs into the situation.

  • scott-swenson

    Speaking of Big Brother, the anonymous commenter above provides an excellent example of Orwell’s Newspeak, where “choice” becomes anything but.


    Be the change you seek,

    Scott Swenson, Editor

  • http://missivesfromthefrontallobe.blogspot.com invalid-0

    So by that logic, 51% of the population of Earth has an abortion every month .

  • http://missivesfromthefrontallobe.blogspot.com invalid-0

    HERE’S AN IDEA

    MEN: Go have a wank. According to the HHS, you will be aborting 51 million babies.

  • invalid-0

    “”This blogger is distorting what the true intent behind the proposal is- protecting those in the health care system who morally opose certain practices.””

    If those people cannot perform their jobs to the fullest extent then they need to get new jobs. It was their decision to enter into the career in which they practice. If I were to tell my company that I could not perform a certain task due to my religious beliefs I would be told to leave. Health care professionals are no different. The laws and the laws and if you don’t like them, go elsewhere.

  • invalid-0

    I’m really surprised at this. I love how they’re saying its God’s will. Everyone likes to define their god’s will in their own way. It’s ridiculous.

  • invalid-0

    left them all to die in a little white toilet paper. I have been doing that for the past 15 years. You could have repopulated the earth million time with all the kids that I killed. counting all those kids would make me a mass-mass-mass murderer and the only thing that keeps me happy (aside ejaculating, I mean) is that i know that all those fucked up right wing people are even worst. However, instead of admitting that they like sex, like me, they come up with all their stupid rules to blame women and oppress them. The saddest thing is that some women are actually supporting them. This country is so fucked up that its scary.

    • invalid-0

      This guy should be the poster child for this blog! He sums them up perfectly!

  • mellankelly1

    Most people who support abortion is because they haven’t had one.  Try it sometime, let it haunt you for the rest of your life.

    Where ever did you get that idea?  Every woman that I know who has had an abortion (myself included) all agree that abortion is, and should always remain, a personal and private matter between a woman, her loved ones and her doctor (regardless of how she feels about her personal decision to terminate her pregnancy).  I don’t regret my decision and I cannot understand the implications of statements such as yours that I should feel remorse or be haunted by my decision to end my pregnancy.  I made the right decision for me and I’d do it again under the same circumstances.  I will be forever thankful that I was born into a country where abortion was a safe and legal option for me.

    There are times when they are necessary, very true, but the majority that are done because "ya got caught"… We all need to take responsibility for ourselves

    Deciding to terminate ones pregnancy is every bit as responsible as deciding to gestate ones pregnancy.  Simply because you disagree with one choice does not make that choice any less responsible than the other.  And really… "ya got caught"?  What does that even mean.  Got caught doing what?  Having sex?  Where are you obtaining your information?  What type of source lists one of the reasons for unplanned pregnancies as "ya got caught"?  Studies done have reflected that over half of all unplanned pregnancies occur in women who were using some form of contraception in the month that they became pregnant.  How could these women become pregnant while using birth control? 

    • Not following instructions for use of contraceptive correctly.
    • Inconsistent use of contraceptive.
    • Condoms broken during sex.
    • Use of antibiotics or other drugs or herbs with oral contraceptive birth control pills.
    • Believing that you can’t get pregnant on your period, or that it’s not your fertile period and feeling that it is safe "just this one time."

    By the way taking the pill is unhealthy, messes up your hormones no matter what anyone says

    Millions of women would beg to differ and each woman is entitled to her own opinion.  But most certainly one should not use an opinion as a reason to deny another woman all of her options.

    • invalid-0

      Thank you for your comment. I’m glad I’m not alone here.

  • invalid-0

    This is dumb. In order for you to abort a child you must first conceive a child…how can you abort a child if you are on birth control.

    • invalid-0

      Once the egg is fertilized, that is a “newly conceived child” and the woman must be prevented from accessing any and all hormonal birth control which would prevent implantation.

  • invalid-0

    what this seems to omit or avoid is that most oral contraception prevents ovulation, which means that there’s no egg even in question. the debate about fertalization/impantation is totally freaking pointless.

    to me, this is just another wrench in the gears of effective public policy- a way to distract the general public from the real issue of under-funding and classism in american health care for women.

  • invalid-0

    This is an outrage. I believe individual women should be allowed to decide for themself what is morally best for them. It is not for my birth control provided to decide what is “morally correct” for me. It is only their job to determine what is medically correct for me. They have absolutely no right to refuse treatment for moral reasons.

    All I really want to know is who I need to write to prevent the government from allowing someone to refuse to give me birth control based on their personal/religious beliefs.

    If you know who I need to e-mail, write, or call please e-mail me: ShakinHeadToToe@yahoo.com

  • invalid-0

    I cannot believe our government is actually considering this. Teenage pregnancy is on the rise for the first time in 15 years (I believe because of abstinent only education) and our response is to take away birth control options from women? For years I fought with horrible cramps that kept me in bed. Finally my doctor put me on birth control (long before I became sexually active) and finally I was able to lead a normal life. After college and graduate school my husband and I decided we were ready to be parents and I am the proud mother of an adorable little boy. Unfortunately during my pregnancy I learned that I had a rare genetic disorder that my pregnancy triggered and caused horrendous headaches and caused me to go blind. After a couple of surgeries I have most of my vision back but I know that if I get pregnant again I could loose my vision permanently. Because of this I am very careful about my birth control. I am a Christian and have a close relationship with God and I can’t imagine that he/she would ever want me to be forced to follow someone else’s decision about whether or not I can protect myself from pregnancy. The fact that McCain has refused to comment on this is very disturbing to me. We can not allow another man to take office who will continue to take away the rights of women. Teach your kids self respect so that they will respect themselves enough to not have sex until they are truly ready, but also so that when they are ready they can and will choose to be responsible.

  • invalid-0

    I don’t really care if 4.9%, 49%, or 99% of Americans believe pregnancy begins at conception. The fact that they believe it doesn’t make them right.

    Somewhere around half of all fertilized eggs naturally fail to implant and are washed out during the woman’s period. Maybe I should be having a funeral for my pads, just in case.

    This is just asinine. The Bush administration has gone beyond pro-”life” into pro-stupidity. Maybe everyone at HHS just needs to get laid, and then they wouldn’t be so grumpy about the fact that most other people do it.

  • invalid-0

    I can understand in a way both sides but when a woman who is pregnant talks about her own body, she has to take into consideration that there is another person also there. The baby has their own body too. A pregnant woman does not have control over the baby’s movements. The blood type can be totally different to the point that the medical system developed medicine because of the RH factor that could affect the development of antibodies that could affect future pregnancies for that couple.

    When the women in Texas drowned her 5 children years ago people were outraged but if she had 5 abortions over seven years people would say that was her right — the outcome would be the same those children would be dead –what’s the difference?

    This is not a religious right issue this is a human being issue and how many of us walking around were “unplanned pregnancy” and if you were do you think your mother had the right to kill you?

  • invalid-0

    First, no born person has a right to use my body against my will. I cannot be forced to donate blood. I cannot be forced to donate a kidney. Even after death, if I did not wish to donate my organs, they cannot be taken out of my dead body. Why then, should a zygote/embryo/fetus have more rights over me than a born person has?

    Second, the difference is that the Yates children were indisputably alive and sentient people when their mother murdered them. Fetuses don’t feel pain until the third trimester. (When abortions are exceedingly rare, and occur for grave reasons such as risk of maternal death or severe fetal deformities). If science had any answers as to when a fetus becomes a person (is ensoulled, whatever), we wouldn’t still be having this debate. As it is, when a ball of human cells with the potential to become a human actually effects that transformation is a matter of personal belief, and as such, the government should butt out.

    Finally, had my mother aborted me, I wouldn’t be here. So? This old question is about as much to the point as asking if once ancestor had done X instead of Y, and would you still be here? It’s pointless. The world would continue if your great-grandfather immigrated to Illinois instead of Minnesota; the world would continue if your mother aborted you instead of carried to term. Seriously, what’s the point of such existential terror at the thought of one’s nonexistence?

    (w00t! I figured out some HTML! There is hope!)

  • invalid-0

    But wait, if people who have a moral aversion to being party to killing people can withhold services that might lead to death without losing their jobs, then car sales people can refuse to sell cars, and gun salespeople can refuse to sell guns, and fast food sales people can refuse to sell fast food… and they can all keep their jobs on moral grounds. What a great precedent! People will just have to find jobs that they object to performing, get them and then get paid for doing nothing. I can hardly wait to be a part of this America.

  • invalid-0

    What’s really the matter? Did the cost of millions of women’s birth control and abortions actually become greater than then poppin’ out a kid?? No way!!

    More seriously, I wonder if a few large health insurance companies are promising to pad Bush’s retirement fund if he can get their costs of reproductive health down by changing the lingo “contraceptives” to “abortions.” This gives the insurance companies an opt out for covering certain medications and procedures, does it not?

    If I were in the last leg of my office stay, I certainly would be looking for my next sugar daddy, so to speak.

    Just a thought…

  • mellankelly1

    The opportunity to turn tragedy into joy for another family through adoption can be a great salve for the raped soul. Note, I said "CAN BE" not will be or is

    Following that absurd notion with the disclaimer that you said "can be" doesn’t suddenly make it a sensible claim.  I never know quite the right words to express my dismay at the complete lack of empathy and total dismissal of what would be in the best interest of each individual woman who becomes pregnant as a result of rape.  Punishing a woman for her ability to become pregnant against her will by forcing her to put her health (mental and physical) and quite possibly her life in danger so that she can produce children for the infertile is unconscionable.  I just can’t believe that a person would think it, let alone write it… it must be the whole anonymity of the Internet thing. 

    I personally am a woman who is completely against abortion with the exception of extreme medical necessity such as loss of life for my self or child and incest.

    I am confused… first, why would abortion be acceptable to you in the case of incest?  Why is that embryo any different than the embryo from rape or consensual sex?  And why, if the life of the embryo/fetus is as important as the life of any person, would it be acceptable to kill it in order to save your own life?  Sounds like your stance on abortion doesn’t have to do with the moral status of the embryo/fetus at all… am I mistaken?  Please explain how these embryo/fetus are different depending upon the circumstances surrounding the sex.

  • invalid-0

    For now. Some day it may not be if proposals such as these are allowed to exist and continue.

    Where this ‘rule change’ is concerned, has anyone pointed out the ABSOLUTE guarantee that our population WILL explode uncontrollably and the medicaid/DHS/WIC programs will completely founder under the weight of this growth? Do they not realize that this will inevitably lead to federally enforced vasectomy and tubal ligations (most likely after the third child? Do they not realize that they are headed down a road very similar to China’s issues with overpopulation where we will be limited to 2 children then 1 child per family. Or worse it could lead to being required to submit a credit check and work history to be ‘approved’ to have a child? To the point where a child will become a ‘luxury item’ rather than a life and experience to be cherished?

    Or is that the plan?

    Probably not. Because the Bush Regime (er, Administration) isn’t real big on the planning department. Indeed, the past eight years has shown us a president who is rather oblivious to the impact of his policies. But I feel he was more concerned with pleasing his supporters among the extremist anti-choice lobby. You are not the first-and you won’t be the last-proliver who thinks these proposed regs are extremely stupid.

  • http://www.republicofdave.com invalid-0

    I’m all for abortion. It’s an essential service in any functional society.

    But don’t healthcare workers have as much right to practice their religious beliefs as women do to get an abortion?

    It’s just as unreasonable for the government to force someone to violate their beliefs as it is to force someone to bear an unwanted child.

    I think many people here are losing sight of the basic issue of individual liberty in the frenzy of concern over the possibility that abortion might be restircted.

    Dave
    http://www.republicofdave.com

  • invalid-0

    “But don’t healthcare workers have as much right to practice their religious beliefs as women do to get an abortion?”

    –Not if it interferes with their patient’s wishes. Access to care could be construed as a fundamental civil liberty, and as such, a medical practitioner denying me care violates the separation of church and state, period.

    Practitioners are there to provide proper care to their patients, NOT to preach their beliefs. By your logic doctors would be able to force Christian Scientists to be operated on if their religious beliefs require them to help others regardless of what the other wishes.

  • invalid-0

    “The other rarely discussed issue here is whether hormonal contraception even does what the religious right claims. There is no scientific evidence that hormonal methods of birth control can prevent a fertilized egg from implanting in the womb.”

    Okay folks lets all get out our package inserts for The Pill or just Google one! Gues what??? The package inserts say they change the lining of the uterus to prevent implantation!!!! So who’s lying???? I’m thinking it’s not the pharmaceutical companies. And, I think the religious right didn’t make it up.

    Amanda
    (one of those totally wacky right-wingers who loves God and babies!)

  • invalid-0

    Wait, my hormonal contraceptives trigger my period due to a lack of hormone that I was taking 3 weeks out of the month. The same type of hormone that the little zygote (baby) starts producing once the cells divide. Thus, not all hormonal contraceptives kill babies! I think some one needs to go back to science class on some of this.

    Granted, I skip over all those nasty hormones that actually cause an egg to pop out of my ovaries, as well as preventing sperm to get that far….

  • invalid-0

    there is a choice. If you do not agree with contraception, GET A DIFFERENT JOB. Don’t hide behind your “right to work”. You don’t have a “right” to work. You earn a job. If you don’t agree with Haliburton’s practices, you quit and go elsewhere, right? If your job description reads: provide comprehensive contraceptive health care/counseling to patients, the organization has a right to require you to do just that. That is what they are paying you to do. and you have a right to go work elsewhere if you don’t agree. this sneaky bit of politics is designed to break down women’s health care rights, not to protect someone’s “religious or moral rights” what a bunch of bull. wake up America, the next abuse could be in YOUR court.

  • invalid-0

    I just wonder… if W. Bush’s God has been talking to the man again.

  • invalid-0

    i am a 28 year old monogamous female.

    i do not want my own children. ever.

    this may be because i was ill as a child and do not want to ever be sick or hospitalized again, but regardless of the reason, i don’t want them.

    i have been refused tubal ligation since i was 20. this is because i’m young and have not had children. if i had, the operation would be no problem.

    I AM NOT ALLOWED NOT TO HAVE CHILDREN.

    so, i have to use birth control. and if that fails, my only choice is abortion.

    I SHOULD NOT BE A MOTHER. I SHOULD NOT BE PREGNANT EVER.

  • invalid-0

    You are right on Mary Mcgloin! This stuff reads like something from a science fiction novel like Fahrenheit 451.
    Bush should have been impeached months ago they have been systematically tearing this country apart and every time I think, well it’s almost over what else can they do. I read something new like this and I feel like it will never end. November can not come soon enough for me.

  • invalid-0

    This proposal is not taking away from a womens rights. If a man and a woman lay down together then getting pregnant is a possiblity. There is not a contreception today that 100 percent prevents pregnancy. So every women knows before she lays down with that man that she has a chance of getting pregnant. It is her right to make the decision to lay down or not. It should not be her right to abort that child after laying with that man. I’m not talking about rape issues. That is another story.

  • mellankelly1

    I’m not talking about rape issues. That is another story.

    Why?  Is it because being anti-abortion has less to do with the moral or physical characteristics of the embryo/fetus and more to do with the circumstances surrounding the intercourse?  Please describe the ways in which the fertilized egg that was the result of rape is different from the fertilized egg that was the result of consensual sex.  I’ll be waiting.

  • invalid-0

    This proposal makes me sick! Where is the seperation between church and state? People shouldn’t forget that women in many states weren’t allowed to obtain birth control without their husband’s permission up until the 1960s! This proposal is trying to take away a woman’s right to control her own reproductive organs. Disgusting!

    “The price of apathy towards public affairs is to be ruled by evil men.”
    - Plato

  • invalid-0

    While I am greatly disturbed by this redefinition I am even more disturbed by the misinformation being distributed regarding this law and its implications. The redefinition as i read it defines abortion as anything that interferes with the pregnancy from the moment of conception until birth. Birth control pills DO NOT INTERFERE with this process. They prevent ovulation and thus there is no egg to fertilize nor pregnancy to abort at any stage. The mere suggestion that women who take oral contraceptives are having monthly abortions is ridiculous and an abuse of power by an organization designed to protect public health and promote health knowledge.

  • invalid-0

    May I choose not to rent them an apartment?

    I am a policeman who thinks black people are the spawn of Satan.

    Can I choose to stand by while a black person is beaten or robbed?

    When does this nonsense end?

  • invalid-0

    I have a female friend that is taking birth control because, if she were to become pregnant, her health would be in substantial danger.
    What about the people who are at an elevated risk of serious medical complications?
    Are we supposed to force those people to “take their chances”?

    Bullshit.
    And what about sexually active young adults.
    Women who are in college?
    Women who are financially unstable as it is?
    Women who bottom line, are not ready for motherhood?
    When did HHS get the right to decide our reproductive schedules?

  • invalid-0

    If a man and a woman lay down together then getting pregnant is a possiblity.

    Haha. I think it takes a BIT more than that.

    There is not a contreception today that 100 percent prevents pregnancy.

    They sure can come close, though! the kind i’m using is 99.9% effective. been having sex for 15 years with no babies yet!

    It should not be her right to abort that child after laying with that man

    You don’t abort a CHILD, you abort a PREGNANCY.

    ok based on this comment i think you need some better sex education. maybe read more on this site, do some googling, learn!

  • invalid-0

    “Tubal ligation and vasectomy are other alternatives that prevent conception from even being a possibility.”

    I just want to note that this law will allow doctors to refuse to preform sterilizations also.

  • invalid-0

    Would these same guidelines be acceptable if the issue was blood transfusions? Is it okay for an EMT who has a moral objection to blood transfusions to refuse to participate in that act? (what, you say no one with that objection would be an EMT? Not today maybe, but if they could STOP them, how many would be willing to sign up?)

    Also, I shudder to think that Universal Health Care looms in our future. Is this ground work for that?

    I do think that since most FEDERALLY FUNDED health care are for the poor, the disabled, the old and the very young…this will have an unwanted impact.

    Please do remember that most Christians in this country do not support anti-choice activists.

  • invalid-0

    I’ve got a whole new take on the “life” debate. After watching the Repugs in action for the last 8 years, my conclusion is that we pro-choicers should start calling their movement – Pro-Birth. It’s obvious that these fundamentalist Christians have no respect for actual life. Repugs vote AGAINST ANY legislation that might improve LIFE,
    i.e. children’s health care
    minimum wage
    family leave
    affirmative action
    support for public schools
    teaching of REAL science in schools
    enforcement of the Voting Rights Act
    funding for special education,ETC.ETC.
    AND FOR that which ends already-born life:
    i.e. death penalty and hidden guns to kill the born with

  • invalid-0

    I wonder how pro-life they will be if a test to determine sexual orientation is ever developed?

  • http://www.rhrealitycheck.org/comment/reply/7707 invalid-0

    Basically, ignoring the abortion issue, it boils down to, can I as a single female/ married female have access to a birth control method that actually works for me.
    My niece takes the pill to help with her debilitating pain and to prevent periods that lasted up to two weeks, rendering her anemic.
    Yes, I think she is sexually active, but that is her choice. I was on the pill for years, never had a problem with it and the only time I got an STD, I thought I was in a monogamous relationship.
    I had an abortion at the age of 18. (Yes the condom broke). At that time and circumstance, I could not have supported a child and myself and due to personal issues, no way I would have felt safe giving a baby up for adoption. Given the same circumstances, I would have to do the same thing.
    As far as choice, I had a friend who got pregnant even though she was using condoms and spermicid. Seems her partner wanted to marry, so he poked holes in the condoms. A co-worker whose mom forced her to a back-ally abortionist before it was legal. The result, she no longer has a choice either.
    So, until an actual born man can have a child, I believe my body, my choice.
    For those of you who are old enough to remember can you say “Soylent Green”? I can see us in a few years, like China now, only allowed to have a certain number of children, but until that happens, expect an upswing in babies being flushed down toilets and abused and beaten to death children.
    Huh, which would I rather see? An early abortion (and a late one if the mother’s life is in danger), or a fully formed baby being killed, beaten, tortured, starved or flushed.
    I agree, this type of unwanted child SHOULD be given up for adoption, but for some reason, they rarely are.

  • http://www.rhrealitycheck.org/blog/2008/07/15/hhs-moves-define-contraception-abortion invalid-0

    Basically, ignoring the abortion issue, it boils down to, can I as a single female/ married female have access to a birth control method that actually works for me.
    My niece takes the pill to help with her debilitating pain and to prevent periods that lasted up to two weeks, rendering her anemic.
    Yes, I think she is sexually active, but that is her choice. I was on the pill for years, never had a problem with it and the only time I got an STD, I thought I was in a monogamous relationship.
    I had an abortion at the age of 18. (Yes the condom broke). At that time and circumstance, I could not have supported a child and myself and due to personal issues, no way I would have felt safe giving a baby up for adoption. Given the same circumstances, I would have to do the same thing.
    As far as choice, I had a friend who got pregnant even though she was using condoms and spermicid. Seems her partner wanted to marry, so he poked holes in the condoms. A co-worker whose mom forced her to a back-ally abortionist before it was legal. The result, she no longer has a choice either.
    So, until an actual born man can have a child, I believe my body, my choice.
    For those of you who are old enough to remember can you say “Soylent Green”? I can see us in a few years, like China now, only allowed to have a certain number of children, but until that happens, expect an upswing in babies being flushed down toilets and abused and beaten to death children.
    Huh, which would I rather see? An early abortion (and a late one if the mother’s life is in danger), or a fully formed baby being killed, beaten, tortured, starved or flushed.
    I agree, this type of unwanted child SHOULD be given up for adoption, but for some reason, they rarely are.

  • invalid-0

    So I am imagining this:

    That abortion is redefined, in turn, the stage is set for a conservative to overturn Roe v. Wade. So in effect, contraceptives are outlawed along with abortion? Downright scary that we might be moving back in time in such a way.

    I wholeheartedly believe that there must be some social action to speak against this monster called government.

    What to do.

  • http://bigjohnsfishing.com invalid-0

    Health workers should be alowed to have a choice. BUT, when they do not tell patients in advance the alternatives they are actually in violation of the Hippocratic oath. I have no issues with peoples religious or ideological positions. My problem is when the try to force those positions on other people. This is the issue. If you have religious issues then work at a religious centric clinic. Such clinics should be forced to announce their conservative leanings so that those that do not want that type of service can go elsewhere. Ideology has no place in health care. but, if reality is, that ideology is in health care to stay then potential patients should be advised and allowed to make their own choice