October 10 2012

"This is Personal" - This is Paternalistic

Hadley Heath

The other day on Facebook I stumbled upon a new group called "This is Personal."  The Facebook ad drew me in, saying, "Click like if you believe birth control should be a woman's decision - not a politician's."  Absolutely! Who could disagree with that?  But I knew better than to brainlessly click "like."  I wanted to know what this campaign was really all about.  I clicked and was disappointed (of course) to find yet another big-government front group trying to fear-monger women into thinking their birth control is getting taken away.

As long as I can remember, birth control in the U.S. has been a woman's decision.  American women can get a prescription from their doctor for the pill (or other forms of contraception), or simply buy condoms at the pharmacy.  No one is forced to take contraception in the U.S., and no one is banned from doing so.  We are free.  We do have that choice.  Who's trying to change that?

Well, no one.  But statists and central planners on the Left would like for birth control to be paid for and not by the people consuming it, but by others (like employers, taxpayers, etc.)   ObamaCare (or the Affordable Care Act) includes provisions that require states and the federal government to determine what kind of treatments and services constitute "minimum essential" coverage as mandated by the government.  This - especially the HHS mandate - puts politicians in charge of what's in my health insurance coverage and gives them reign over decisions regarding what types of birth control are included.  Excuse me, but I thought we were trying to keep politicians out of birth control.  

Also on the homepage, the group bemoans the mandate in eight states to have a medically unnecessary ultrasound in order to end a pregnancy.  And not one inch from this box, in another box they celebrate and push for mandates that require coverage for contraception and another box with a mandate to cover maternity care.  And mandates that pharmacists sell drugs they don't believe in.  And mandates that employers subsidize those drugs.  So please, don't pretend to be for freedom and choices when you oppose the economic choices of so many.  

I just got a letter in the mail a couple of weeks ago from my insurance company to tell me that I'm now enrolled for maternity coverage.  I didn't ask for this, don't want it, and don't want to pay for it.  But I have it now.  Because it's mandated.  What's empowering about that?  Nothing.  In fact, it's insulting.  My government officials don't think I'm responsible enough to avoid an unexpected pregnancy.  And clearly the folks at "This is Personal" think I'm not able to provide for my own health needs.

I would definitely click "like" if the "This is Personal" campaign was really about keeping politicians out of health care.  But it isn't.  It's about infusing the system with more costly mandates and further removing individual responsibility and choice from our lives.  Health care should be personal.  But sadly, with campaigns like this pushing for bigger and bigger government intervention via ObamaCare, health care is going to become a lot less personal, and a lot more paternalistic.

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