Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

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Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby sardia » Sat Nov 02, 2013 4:56 pm UTC

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/02/us/co ... tml?ref=us
The latest court ruling lines up with the majority of other court rulings regarding mandating contraception coverage violates the freedom of religion line.

I'm in line with the dissenting argument here, but the argument against mandating contraception have some merit because they're winning all the majority of the cases...Or it's because this court is missing 3 appointments because Obama has been cockblocked by the GOP for 5 years leaving the court with a composition that is more conservative than it ought to be. I wonder what the supreme court will say.

Again the issue of the poor vs the rich lurks in the background. You don't hear poor religious people demanding to be taken off contraception, because they can't afford to fight for it. Just another reason why the rich don't understand or remember what it's like to be poor.
Last edited by sardia on Sat Nov 02, 2013 7:09 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby Grop » Sat Nov 02, 2013 5:16 pm UTC

Bullshit freedom, bullshit religion, greedy greed.

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby ManaUser » Sat Nov 02, 2013 8:51 pm UTC

On the one hand, this is a particularly stupid point to get hung up on, from my perspective, but on the other I certainly agree with the court that this is a violation of individual freedoms.

Although the individual mandate is (rightly) the most hated part of the law, the employer mandate is pretty bad too. And silly! Getting health insurance through an employer is the worst way to go about it, since if you get seriously ill you won't be able to work anymore and will lose your coverage.

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby cerbie » Sun Nov 03, 2013 4:31 am UTC

The individual having a right to contraceptives in no way forces them to use them. If they do not wish to use them, that's their business, and their right, not their employer's. That is part of the reason for having such coverage be forced. If their employer has a big problem with that, they should not be offering health insurance. I don't see how offering health insurance is itself a practice of religion.

Disclaimer: the above should in no way be taken as a nod of approval for the ACA.
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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby Cleverbeans » Sun Nov 03, 2013 6:14 am UTC

Socialized health care - you're doing it wrong.
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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby dii » Sun Nov 03, 2013 8:47 am UTC

Cleverbeans wrote:Socialized health care - you're doing it wrong.


But socialism is evil, and if we give in to socialism, next it's the gays moving in next door and having premarital babies.

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby Derek » Sun Nov 03, 2013 9:55 am UTC

There are so many flagrant violations of individual liberty in The Affordable Care Act (lol, nice word filter), it's hard to separate this one from the rest. But in short, I agree with the court.

cerbie wrote:If their employer has a big problem with that, they should not be offering health insurance.

That's the catch, the employer does not have the choice to not offer insurance anymore.

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby Paul in Saudi » Sun Nov 03, 2013 2:06 pm UTC

I am not seeing it. It seems to me that the solution is to give the employee some sort of chit that can be exchanged for health insurance. The worker will then use the chit to buy whatever authorized insurance best fits their needs. If that includes blood-letting, so be it.

This way the company (the owner, whatever) is not buy condoms, but giving the worker money with which they can buy the condoms.

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby The Great Hippo » Sun Nov 03, 2013 6:05 pm UTC

Derek wrote:There are so many flagrant violations of individual liberty in The Affordable Care Act (lol, nice word filter), it's hard to separate this one from the rest. But in short, I agree with the court.
Could you name one individual liberty that the Affordable Care Act infringes upon?

Also, if you agree with the court, do you also agree it's the right of hospitals and pharmacies to deny people access to contraception on religious grounds? Even if those people require it to treat serious medical illnesses? In short, do you think it's okay to deny people access to medicine just because your religion tells you they shouldn't have access to that medicine?

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby Brace » Sun Nov 03, 2013 6:15 pm UTC

The mandate diminishes the ability of people to afford care on the open market though, so to subsequently deny any kind of care is to prioritize one person's freedoms over another's in a situation where they were artificially put at odds.
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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby The Great Hippo » Sun Nov 03, 2013 6:21 pm UTC

Brace wrote:The mandate diminishes the ability of people to afford care on the open market though, so to subsequently deny any kind of care is to prioritize one person's freedoms over another's in a situation where they were artificially put at odds.
It diminishes the ability of certain people to afford care on the open market; specifically, healthy people with no pre-existing conditions -- IE, the people who need comprehensive health insurance the least. The people who need health care the most probably can't get it on the open market -- you can't significantly diminish an ability that's already that close to non-existent.

Otherwise, yeah -- denying care under these conditions seems like a dick move. At the very least, it's contrary to what the Affordable Care Act is trying to accomplish (getting everyone access to affordable health care).

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby skeptical scientist » Sun Nov 03, 2013 6:48 pm UTC

Where do you draw the line?
  • Some religions prohibit virtually all medical care (e.g. Christian Science). Does requiring employers to provide health insurance violate their freedom of religion?
  • Some religions prohibit blood transfusions (e.g. Jehovah's Witness). Does requiring employers to provide health insurance which covers blood transfusions violate their freedom of religion?
  • Most religions prohibit suicide. Does requiring employers to provide health insurance which covers doctor-assisted suicide violate their freedom of religion?

Freedom of religion is not absolute. To take an extreme example, if Aztecs were around today, they couldn't get away with human sacrifice on the basis of freedom of religion. In cases where freedom of religion of one group conflicts with the welfare of another group, the courts must do a balancing act to determine which laws are justified and which violate freedom of religion. It seems clear to me that requiring religious employers to pay for coverage that they are morally opposed to does, in fact, violate their freedom of religion. Despite this, it seems perfectly reasonable to require employers to provide health insurance to their employees, Christian Scientists be damned! However, I don't think it's reasonable to require employers to include coverage for doctor-assisted suicide in their employee health-care plans, and I don't see any clear place to draw the line between those extremes.
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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby K-R » Sun Nov 03, 2013 6:55 pm UTC

skeptical scientist wrote:it seems perfectly reasonable to require employers to provide health insurance to their employees

Why?

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby The Great Hippo » Sun Nov 03, 2013 7:06 pm UTC

skeptical scientist wrote:Some religions prohibit blood transfusions (e.g. Jehovah's Witness). Does requiring employers to provide health insurance which covers blood transfusions violate their freedom of religion?
I forgot about this one; it's a pretty great example of why we should not allow people's religion to inform our medical policies, and why it's sometimes perfectly acceptable for government mandates to violate one's religious prohibitions.

Imagine a Jehovah Witness hospital. Imagine how happy we'd be when they started killing people in the ER because they couldn't perform a simple medical procedure on account of a religious prohibition.

Don't go into medicine if you practice a religion that prohibits medicine; don't go into business if you practice a religion that prohibits providing for your employees' safety and health.
K-R wrote:Why?
Because who else would provide health insurance?

It's the employer's duty to provide the employee with financial compensation for their work; if the financial compensation the employer provides is insufficient for the employee to pursue health coverage, how else can the employee acquire health coverage? Either employers need to offer enough money for their employees to have health coverage -- or they need to provide that health coverage themselves.

Either that, or it should be the government's duty. Either way, people need health coverage -- and insurance companies aren't apparently in the business of providing it.
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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby K-R » Sun Nov 03, 2013 7:11 pm UTC

The Great Hippo wrote:Because who else would provide health insurance?

Health insurance companies. That is, after all, what they're for.

Either way, people need health coverage

Why?

and insurance companies aren't in the business of providing it.

That seems to be a bit more of a problem than everything else, then.

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby The Great Hippo » Sun Nov 03, 2013 7:14 pm UTC

K-R wrote:Why?
Because if you get cancer without health coverage, you either die of cancer or go bankrupt trying to survive.

My father-in-law knows a lady who has a brain tumor; because it's not immediately threatening her life -- and she doesn't have insurance -- she can't get it treated. Unless she gets in a car accident and they happen to discover the brain tumor in the ER, where they'll be forced to treat it. Which is actually one solution she's seriously considering.
K-R wrote:That seems to be a bit more of a problem than everything else, then.
And that's the direction the Affordable Care Act moves in -- trying to attack the problem by pushing insurance companies to make themselves more affordable and offer coverage, using employer mandates to fill in the gaps, etc.

I think the better solution would be a model similar to what Canada or other countries did -- single-payer systems -- but I'm not an expert on this subject, so it's hard for me to say with any real certainty.

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby K-R » Sun Nov 03, 2013 7:22 pm UTC

The Great Hippo wrote:Because if you get cancer without health coverage, you either die of cancer or go bankrupt trying to survive.

This seems more related to medical costs and life being a rather uncaring sort of thing than anything directly related to health insurance. It is, after all, insurance, not a discount card.

pushing insurance companies to make themselves more affordable

So when you say they're not in the business of providing insurance, what you actually meant was that they are in the business of providing insurance, as opposed to being a charity?

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby The Great Hippo » Sun Nov 03, 2013 7:26 pm UTC

K-R wrote:This seems more related to medical costs and life being a rather uncaring sort of thing than anything directly related to health insurance. It is, after all, insurance, not a discount card.
Right; this is a bug in reality. But since we can't patch reality, we're going to fix it by patching what we can -- specifically, the way health care works.
K-R wrote:So when you say they're not in the business of providing insurance, what you actually meant was that they are in the business of providing insurance, as opposed to being a charity?
No. I mean precisely what I said. Health insurance companies have entire departments dedicated to finding ways to void your coverage in the event of you becoming ill -- by doing things like voiding your policy because you failed to disclose a medical history of acne.

Insurance companies are not in the business of providing insurance; they are in the business of taking your money and doing everything in their power to deny your coverage when you need it most.

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby Tyndmyr » Sun Nov 03, 2013 8:01 pm UTC

cerbie wrote:The individual having a right to contraceptives in no way forces them to use them. If they do not wish to use them, that's their business, and their right, not their employer's. That is part of the reason for having such coverage be forced. If their employer has a big problem with that, they should not be offering health insurance. I don't see how offering health insurance is itself a practice of religion.

Disclaimer: the above should in no way be taken as a nod of approval for the ACA.


No, but it does force them to partake in a plan where they are paying for them. A religion that bans booze generally also frowns on buying booze for others. Same, same.

I don't really claim to understand WHY religions have such a problem with birth control, but then, I'm an atheist. Clearly, I'm not really seeing things from their PoV overall.

Economically, this is causing problems...not the birth control in general, but the list of mandated coverage items. As it grows, costs are associated with it...and lots of policies aren't being grandfathered under the ACA due to the very tight restrictions for that, and thus, if you have a non-grandfathered policy that doesn't cover all mandated stuff, well...that's gonna be canceled. This is fairly counterproductive, but it's an economic problem, not a religious one.

Derek wrote:
cerbie wrote:If their employer has a big problem with that, they should not be offering health insurance.

That's the catch, the employer does not have the choice to not offer insurance anymore.


Sure they can. They can pay the fine(sometimes cheaper, but situational), or they can have less than fifty full time workers. This can be accomplished by dropping them to part time, or just not hiring past 49. There's a few ways to dodge it.

That said, your point still stands, since for many decently sized companies, it is essentially "you have to do this or pay the fine".

Paul in Saudi wrote:I am not seeing it. It seems to me that the solution is to give the employee some sort of chit that can be exchanged for health insurance. The worker will then use the chit to buy whatever authorized insurance best fits their needs. If that includes blood-letting, so be it.

This way the company (the owner, whatever) is not buy condoms, but giving the worker money with which they can buy the condoms.


Alternative systems are mostly illegal now. A few companies used to just pay all bills up front. These bennies were really hard to find, but really nice. Had a friend who was on one, and going to an insurance scheme with a copay and what not has left him displeased.

The Great Hippo wrote:
Brace wrote:The mandate diminishes the ability of people to afford care on the open market though, so to subsequently deny any kind of care is to prioritize one person's freedoms over another's in a situation where they were artificially put at odds.
It diminishes the ability of certain people to afford care on the open market; specifically, healthy people with no pre-existing conditions -- IE, the people who need comprehensive health insurance the least. The people who need health care the most probably can't get it on the open market -- you can't significantly diminish an ability that's already that close to non-existent.

Otherwise, yeah -- denying care under these conditions seems like a dick move. At the very least, it's contrary to what the Affordable Care Act is trying to accomplish (getting everyone access to affordable health care).


Well, technically, the medical device tax is gonna hurt a lot of people. It's gonna cost some jobs. It's gonna raise costs. That translates to more people with difficulty paying for medical care. Not all of those people will necessarily be healthy.

Both that and the mandate are portions that could be argued to be pretty harmful...but it's difficult to conceive of this plan without these things or something like them. Costs are incurred by the other bits, after all.

Either way, people need health coverage


No, people need health care. Insurance is merely one mechanism, albeit sometimes a handy one, to pay for it. Insurance should not be equated with care, though.

The Great Hippo wrote:
K-R wrote:This seems more related to medical costs and life being a rather uncaring sort of thing than anything directly related to health insurance. It is, after all, insurance, not a discount card.
Right; this is a bug in reality. But since we can't patch reality, we're going to fix it by patching what we can -- specifically, the way health care works.


Yeah, but this doesn't actually fix rising medical expenses at all. There's a pretty finite amount of hospitals and doctors, those are still gonna be providing roughly the same quantity of care...only now there's more admin costs on top of that.

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby The Great Hippo » Sun Nov 03, 2013 8:09 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:No, people need health care. Insurance is merely one mechanism, albeit sometimes a handy one, to pay for it. Insurance should not be equated with care, though.
Sure, which is why I'd much rather see a single-payer system.
Tyndmyr wrote:Yeah, but this doesn't actually fix rising medical expenses at all. There's a pretty finite amount of hospitals and doctors, those are still gonna be providing roughly the same quantity of care...only now there's more admin costs on top of that.
Which is why a single-payer system would be ideal; however, I doubt health insurance companies would be okay with us reducing them to near-obsolescence.

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby skeptical scientist » Sun Nov 03, 2013 9:04 pm UTC

K-R wrote:
skeptical scientist wrote:it seems perfectly reasonable to require employers to provide health insurance to their employees

Why?

I mainly meant it doesn't seem to me to have any first-amendment issues. It is often more expensive and difficult to get health insurance if it's not through your employer. One way of trying to address that situation is a law requiring employers to provide health coverage, even if there are some employers who have religious issues with providing medical coverage and others who would simply prefer not to provide medical coverage. Whether you think such a law is a good idea or not, do you agree that it doesn't seem problematic on first-amendment grounds?

I don't really want to derail this thread into debates over who should provide health coverage and whether health insurance companies are good or bad, and would prefer to discuss the freedom-of-religion issues.
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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby cerbie » Mon Nov 04, 2013 2:42 am UTC

Cleverbeans wrote:Socialized health care - you're doing it wrong.
We're trying to stick to corporate welfare, because we don't want to turn into pinko commies. Our politicians admitting that countries they like to demonize for socialism might have made a handful of OK decisions would be too much shame for them to bear.

Derek wrote:
cerbie wrote:If their employer has a big problem with that, they should not be offering health insurance.

That's the catch, the employer does not have the choice to not offer insurance anymore.
I was under the impression they simply had a larger penalty (compared to individuals), if they chose not to offer it. Is that not correct?
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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby morriswalters » Mon Nov 04, 2013 11:41 am UTC

I think that the employer doesn't have to offer health care at all, butand if they do it must meet the legal minimum policy coverage.

K-R wrote:This seems more related to medical costs and life being a rather uncaring sort of thing than anything directly related to health insurance. It is, after all, insurance, not a discount card.
I thought the idea that insurance could spread the cost of care over a lifetime, rather than as a spike of expenses at specific instances in time. Coverage for very expensive treatments, like cancer care for instance, can be paid for because the risk, while universal, won't be realized for some groups of persons, making that money paid for those who didn't need it available for those who do need it. Since you deal with aggregates you don't need to know the specifics of who will get what, when.

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby leady » Mon Nov 04, 2013 4:22 pm UTC

morriswalters wrote:I thought the idea that insurance could spread the cost of care over a lifetime, rather than as a spike of expenses at specific instances in time. Coverage for very expensive treatments, like cancer care for instance, can be paid for because the risk, while universal, won't be realized for some groups of persons, making that money paid for those who didn't need it available for those who do need it. Since you deal with aggregates you don't need to know the specifics of who will get what, when.


yes and no but more no

insurance is for managing risk and is far more successful at managing risks that stay within a reasonable bound.

insurance is good for generalising based on seemingly unfair factors and very bad if applied as forced equalisation

insurance is pretty bad for managing escalating risks with time (i.e. healthcare or even litiguous car insurance escalations)

Insurance just isn't insurance if its covering known fixed costs such as monthly physicals etc

Insurance really really isn't insurance if it can be enacted at the point of getting sick

All in all I think for healthcare you need a combination of incidentals out of pocket, catastrophic for the unexpected & healthcare pension pot to cover age

Both the NHS and ACA are miles away from this model

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby morriswalters » Mon Nov 04, 2013 4:44 pm UTC

leady wrote:Insurance just isn't insurance if its covering known fixed costs such as monthly physicals etc
Why? Insurance is a bet that the person offering it can provide the payout, if the bet is lost. If properly priced, why is there a limit to what it can cover? Assuming that everybody is in the game.

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby sardia » Mon Nov 04, 2013 4:54 pm UTC

leady wrote:
morriswalters wrote:I thought the idea that insurance could spread the cost of care over a lifetime, rather than as a spike of expenses at specific instances in time. Coverage for very expensive treatments, like cancer care for instance, can be paid for because the risk, while universal, won't be realized for some groups of persons, making that money paid for those who didn't need it available for those who do need it. Since you deal with aggregates you don't need to know the specifics of who will get what, when.


yes and no but more no

insurance is for managing risk and is far more successful at managing risks that stay within a reasonable bound.

insurance is good for generalising based on seemingly unfair factors and very bad if applied as forced equalisation

insurance is pretty bad for managing escalating risks with time (i.e. healthcare or even litiguous car insurance escalations)

Insurance just isn't insurance if its covering known fixed costs such as monthly physicals etc

Insurance really really isn't insurance if it can be enacted at the point of getting sick

All in all I think for healthcare you need a combination of incidentals out of pocket, catastrophic for the unexpected & healthcare pension pot to cover age

Both the NHS and ACA are miles away from this model

How do the countries with socialized healthcare handle this? How is this different from before the ACA act passed? What's so special about old people that we need to cover age?

What I don't get is why they are offended for spending money that leads to contraceptives, but they are ok with spending money on taxes that lead to contraceptives. But, considering how hard they tried imposing their religious values on us, maybe they are being consistent. Consistently tyrannical, just because they speak to some alien ghost spirit, they think they can trample all over our rights.

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby davidstarlingm » Mon Nov 04, 2013 5:31 pm UTC

I totally don't think a requirement to provide contraception violates freedom of religion for religious businesses. That being said, I think I understand one possible thought process for people who argue it does.

It's a common belief in the pro-life movement that the Morning After Pill is a "soft" abortifacient -- that its typical function is to prevent a developing embryo from successfully implanting in the uterine wall. Now, scientifically, this is hogwash....but the studies to definitively prove this have only been recently released, and there's still a lot of confusion and ambiguity. Some folks even think the Morning After Pill is the same as RU486. I had to educate my dad on this subject just the other day -- he honestly thought the Morning After Pill was the same thing as a chemical abortion.

For the hard-line pro-lifers out there, abortion isn't wrong because their religion says so; it's wrong because it's murder, and it's murder because their religion says so (there are also hard-liners who think it's murder apart from religious justification). That's the tricky part: if it was just an issue of forbidden actions, like blood transfusions and Jehovah's Witnesses, that would be one thing....but it's an issue of definition, and that's what's hard to get around. Jehovah's Witnesses say blood transfusions are wrong for them, but the hardline prolifers say that abortion is murder, and murder is wrong for everybody.

Anyway, based on this string of logic, it's easy to see why religious and misinformed (or even nonreligious but still misinformed) people would balk at the idea that corporations would be required to cover birth control....because if some "birth control" is thought to be a chemical abortion, then that's tantamount to requiring people to pay for abortions.

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby sam_i_am » Mon Nov 04, 2013 5:36 pm UTC

There are plenty of reasons to be opposed to forcing insurance plans to cover specific things such as contraception. But freedom of religion isn't one of them.

Requiring contraception to be covered by insurance violates the freedom of Catholic's religion no more than laws against murder violate the religion of Aztecs.

Plainly and simply, religion is not an excuse to violate the law as you see fit.

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby The Great Hippo » Mon Nov 04, 2013 5:49 pm UTC

I do not think the morning after pill is something that that would be covered by an insurance plan anyway; I'm fairly certain it's an over the counter medication. It would be kind of like a doctor prescribing Tylenol for a headache -- it could happen, but you're more likely to just go buy it yourself.

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby sardia » Mon Nov 04, 2013 5:54 pm UTC

Davidstar, aren't you ignoring the faction that is against contraception due to a religious fatwa issued by the Christian mullahs centuries ago? It was their ploy to overrun the enemy by breeding like rabbits.

Seriously though, being against contraception isn't solely an abortion arguemnt. The US is an outlier in that it disregards orders from the Pope that you are to not use birth control.

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby davidstarlingm » Mon Nov 04, 2013 6:06 pm UTC

Even the more-conservative recently-retired Pope Benedict said that sex with a condom is better than sex without a condom if you're already sinning. Basically, the sin of trying to prevent procreation isn't as serious as the sin of not respecting your partner enough to keep them safe.

But yeah, hormonal methods are right out because Oh me yarm wommens who can haz the sex without the babiez are too powerful and also scary.

Yes, in the Ancient Near East kids represented financial security in your old age as well as free labor while you were still young, and so someone with a lot of kids was considered blessed. This does not mean that unhinged, unrestrictedly constant breeding is the most bestest thing evar.

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Nov 04, 2013 6:25 pm UTC

sam_i_am wrote:There are plenty of reasons to be opposed to forcing insurance plans to cover specific things such as contraception. But freedom of religion isn't one of them.

Requiring contraception to be covered by insurance violates the freedom of Catholic's religion no more than laws against murder violate the religion of Aztecs.

Plainly and simply, religion is not an excuse to violate the law as you see fit.


"Being against contraception" and "murder" do not appear to be terribly interchangeable. The argument of "this can't be violating freedom, because it's the LAW" also does not seem terribly sound. Yes, laws can violate freedoms. Laws have gotten ditched for that before. The fact that it's a law is a poor reason for the law's existance. I mean, that's circular.

Now, while I'm not personally a big fan of religion's anti-contraception stance, I have to admit that it has been around for a while, so it's not a made-up objection. I also have to agree that forcing someone to pay for something their religion says is wrong....kind of goes against freedom of religion. And, in the end, I don't see a compelling reason why this right is outweighed by other rights. So...yeah, they've got a legitimate case. It isn't the case I would use against The Affordable Care Act, but it seems to have some validity.

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby mike-l » Mon Nov 04, 2013 6:52 pm UTC

sardia wrote:How do the countries with socialized healthcare handle this?


leady wrote:insurance is for managing risk and is far more successful at managing risks that stay within a reasonable bound.

As long as it's spread amongst a large enough pool of people who's risks are relatively independent, then there's no issue.

insurance is good for generalising based on seemingly unfair factors and very bad if applied as forced equalisation
Not sure what this is getting it. If you're suggesting that mandated insurance is somehow a wealth transfer, then sure it is, only because poorer people tend to get sick more.

insurance is pretty bad for managing escalating risks with time (i.e. healthcare or even litiguous car insurance escalations)
There's no mathematical basis for this statement.

Insurance just isn't insurance if its covering known fixed costs such as monthly physicals etc
Sure, if everyone being insured has those same fixed costs. If they don't, and the incidents of those fixed costs is relatively random, then insurance still works great.

Insurance really really isn't insurance if it can be enacted at the point of getting sick
Hence the individual mandate, and in socialized insurance everyone is enrolled from birth, so not an issue.

All in all I think for healthcare you need a combination of incidentals out of pocket, catastrophic for the unexpected & healthcare pension pot to cover age
That's pretty much your standard plan with a deductible. Part of your premium goes towards future costs of ageing, it just isn't displayed broken down for you. However, deductibles generally encourage poor people not to seek treatment, until the problem becomes much more expensive to fix. They also discourage frivolous use. I'd like to see a study showing which one actually costs more.



On the topic of the contraception mandate, I'm shocked that any court ruled this way, and I suspect that when it does go to the higher courts the law will be upheld. I see a requirement to purchase health benefits for your employees as no more right violating than a requirement to pay your employees, or give them breaks.

Also, not that it's in any way required for the argument, but since birth control is vastly cheaper than pregnancy and subsequent medical care for the child, it's usually cheaper to buy a plan that covers birth control than one that doesn't, so the argument isn't even 'I'm being forced to pay for something I don't agree with' (which is still a stupid argument)
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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby cphite » Mon Nov 04, 2013 7:33 pm UTC

The Great Hippo wrote:
K-R wrote:Why?
Because who else would provide health insurance?


Millions of people buy their insurance individually; in fact, that's one of the biggest things that The Affordable Care Act does is force people (or at least, coerce people) who don't have employer-based insurance to buy it on their own. So given that that option is available, why should employers be required to provide it at all?

It's the employer's duty to provide the employee with financial compensation for their work; if the financial compensation the employer provides is insufficient for the employee to pursue health coverage, how else can the employee acquire health coverage? Either employers need to offer enough money for their employees to have health coverage -- or they need to provide that health coverage themselves.


Everyone needs a place to live; does that mean that if someone can't afford their rent, their employer should be required to cover that too? Why is the responsibility of an employer to make sure an employee has health coverage?

Either that, or it should be the government's duty. Either way, people need health coverage -- and insurance companies aren't apparently in the business of providing it.


People need homes every bit as much as they need health coverage; arguably more so. Why is it the duty of the government or business to provide one and not the other?

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby sardia » Mon Nov 04, 2013 7:37 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:
sam_i_am wrote:There are plenty of reasons to be opposed to forcing insurance plans to cover specific things such as contraception. But freedom of religion isn't one of them.

Requiring contraception to be covered by insurance violates the freedom of Catholic's religion no more than laws against murder violate the religion of Aztecs.

Plainly and simply, religion is not an excuse to violate the law as you see fit.


"Being against contraception" and "murder" do not appear to be terribly interchangeable. The argument of "this can't be violating freedom, because it's the LAW" also does not seem terribly sound. Yes, laws can violate freedoms. Laws have gotten ditched for that before. The fact that it's a law is a poor reason for the law's existance. I mean, that's circular.

Now, while I'm not personally a big fan of religion's anti-contraception stance, I have to admit that it has been around for a while, so it's not a made-up objection. I also have to agree that forcing someone to pay for something their religion says is wrong....kind of goes against freedom of religion. And, in the end, I don't see a compelling reason why this right is outweighed by other rights. So...yeah, they've got a legitimate case. It isn't the case I would use against The Affordable Care Act, but it seems to have some validity.

This isn't a 1-off case though, nor is this district particularly conservative. There is a mitigating factor, (this district court should have had 3 more democratic judges on it, which would have tilted it in favor of contraception. Losing this case in SCOTUS would be pretty hard on poor women, they have to spend money and/or time to get something that men can get for free. (Men get boner pills and condoms without controversy; mostly due to the sexist nature of society/religion/conservatives). Does anybody know what the key issue is? Is it a test of rights violated vs the cost? Or is it a cut and dried test that you cannot violate religious freedoms?

PS http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/04/busin ... es.html?hp
Millions get free or nearly free healthcare.
Bronze plans aren't heavily advertised becaused it leads to more people like Leady. If you pay the minimum, it drains the pool of valuable cash, raising premiums for everyone else.

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby Heisenberg » Mon Nov 04, 2013 7:51 pm UTC

The Great Hippo wrote:
K-R wrote:So when you say they're not in the business of providing insurance, what you actually meant was that they are in the business of providing insurance, as opposed to being a charity?
No. I mean precisely what I said. Health insurance companies have entire departments dedicated to finding ways to void your coverage in the event of you becoming ill -- by doing things like voiding your policy because you failed to disclose a medical history of acne.

Insurance companies are not in the business of providing insurance; they are in the business of taking your money and doing everything in their power to deny your coverage when you need it most.
And the reason that health insurers are the only companies that screw their customers and still make money is that the tax break basically forces us all to buy through our employers. If, say, Toyota repossessed a thousand cars because owners didn't fill out their paperwork correctly, many people would stop buying Toyotas. However, if United Healthcare does it, many people have no other option, because their employer provides the plan at a steep discount thanks to a tax break instituted decades ago, and they'd have to find a new job to find a comparable plan with a different provider.
The Great Hippo wrote:It's the employer's duty to provide the employee with financial compensation for their work; if the financial compensation the employer provides is insufficient for the employee to pursue health coverage, how else can the employee acquire health coverage? Either employers need to offer enough money for their employees to have health coverage -- or they need to provide that health coverage themselves.
The tax break is the only advantage to employer health coverage. If that tax break was eliminated, or extended to individuals or other groups buying health coverage, then employer bought health care would become obsolete, people could pick their own health insurers, insurers who treated their clients like shit would have fewer clients, and people wouldn't lose their insurance when they lost their jobs.

Employer-based coverage is a pretty terrible idea, and it's only the norm now because of a deal struck by corporations, unions, and the government a long time ago.

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby sardia » Mon Nov 04, 2013 8:38 pm UTC

As great as letting the free market decide how much you should pay when you're hanging on by a thread is, we could just as easily decide to have the government provide for the general welfare, and eliminate the idea of paying for insurance all together. Just have the government provide healthcare paid through general taxes. Because I said it is easy and better for us, it must be so. Right Heisenberg?

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby davidstarlingm » Mon Nov 04, 2013 9:51 pm UTC

sardia wrote:Losing this case in SCOTUS would be pretty hard on poor women, they have to spend money and/or time to get something that men can get for free. (Men get boner pills and condoms without controversy; mostly due to the sexist nature of society/religion/conservatives).

Don't quote me on this, but I seem to recall at least one instance of legislation being introduced to make it illegal to purchase Viagra without a marriage license.

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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby DSenette » Mon Nov 04, 2013 10:09 pm UTC

davidstarlingm wrote:
sardia wrote:Losing this case in SCOTUS would be pretty hard on poor women, they have to spend money and/or time to get something that men can get for free. (Men get boner pills and condoms without controversy; mostly due to the sexist nature of society/religion/conservatives).

Don't quote me on this, but I seem to recall at least one instance of legislation being introduced to make it illegal to purchase Viagra without a marriage license.

which was presented by a woman legislator, quite possibly for the sole purpose of pointing out the douchebaggery in the male dominated legislature(s) of our country. (assuming we're talking about the same thing...which...i'm pretty sure we are)
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Re: Contraception Violates Freedom of Religion

Postby The Great Hippo » Mon Nov 04, 2013 10:11 pm UTC

cphite wrote:Millions of people buy their insurance individually; in fact, that's one of the biggest things that The Affordable Care Act does is force people (or at least, coerce people) who don't have employer-based insurance to buy it on their own. So given that that option is available, why should employers be required to provide it at all?
The Affordable Care Act is a crude attempt by the government to make healthcare affordable; ie, you can see it as the government trying to provide healthcare for its citizens (and using employers as part of the solution). If you'd rather the government just make healthcare available to everyone without relying on the employer, I'm right with you.

People need homes every bit as much as they need health coverage; arguably more so. Why is it the duty of the government or business to provide one and not the other?
Governments do provide housing, albeit sometimes suboptimally.

At some point in western history, civilized society decided it was the duty of its participants to provide for those who cannot provide for themselves. I guess you didn't get that memo?


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