Liberal Orthodoxy

I am about to offend some liberals probably. Fair warning.

When I see the news about the debate over the Obama care law mandating that religious organizations are required to offer contraception coverage in their health care plans, I do not see liberals caring about people. I see liberals demanding government enforced adherence to an orthodox ideology.

I am going to offend liberals further by quoting from a David Harsanyi article (the one that inspired this post) at reason.com.

At some point, contraception was transformed from a — and I hope my Catholic friends will excuse the wording — godsend to those wanting to avoid unwanted pregnancy to a “public health” concern to a moral societal imperative that must be mandated, lest we abandon our daughters, science, decency, “choice” and freedom.

[…]

How does coercion become “choice”? I ran across a headline on the website of the left-wing think tank ThinkProgress that illustrates the awkward logic of this assertion: “Missouri Legislature Approves Bill Allowing Employers To Deny Access To Birth Control.”

So far as I know, no one but a pharmacist can actually deny someone access to birth control. Religious employers saying “we will not pay for it” does not bar the employee from access to birth control. An employer not buying you a car does not deny you access to automobiles. An employer not buying you shoes does not deny you access to shoes.

But there is this notion that somehow not having Catholic organizations pay for contraception is denying women access to contraception. Somehow we are to protect women by taking a legitimate and reasonable choice away from other people. This sort of liberal authoritarian paternalism is just as bad as the conservative kind that seeks to protect people by preventing gay marriage. And it stems just as much from orthodoxy.

I am not against contraception. I am in favor of women having it available. What I do not favor is forcing religious organizations opposed to it to pay for it.

And just to so you know, those programs where the government hands out money to religious organizations, I am opposed to that. I believe separation of church and state is a good idea.

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