Letters to the Editor

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CONTRACEPTION: Don’t give in to extremists

Letter by Laura H. Vaughn, Tacoma on Feb. 17, 2012 at 1:13 pm | 67 Comments »
February 23, 2012 11:35 am

The Catholic Church cried foul when faced with paying for mandatory birth control coverage for women employed in its many hospitals and other institutions. It claims that paying for Catholics and non-Catholics alike violates religious freedom.

I believe religious organizations should not be exempt from supporting their female employees in the same manner as for-profit companies, hospitals and universities. President Obama should not have backed down from his original position.

Having done so, has only given rise to more religious groups and right-wing conservatives leaping into the fray, yelling and screaming that they want no part of women’s health care programs.

Hopefully they will take into consideration the new New York Times/CBS News poll that indicates most Americans, including a majority of Catholics, support requiring religiously affiliated institutions to provide contraception coverage.

The First Amendment rightly required the “wall of separation between church and state” envisioned by Thomas Jefferson. That “wall” supposedly precludes government from favoring or disfavoring one view of religion over another.

Tax-exempt, nonprofit mega-churches, hospitals and universities are supposedly restricted from lobbing and politics. Did the huge tax breaks they enjoy just appear like religious miracles?

There is intense lobbying by religious groups and right-wing conservatives bent on imposing their will on women by restricting their rights. Today the religious rallying cry is to deny women birth control coverage. What will women have to do next to satisfy other religious extremists? Wear burkas?

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