Obamacare: Fights Religious Beliefs, But Hurts Women
Religion & Liberty Online

Obamacare: Fights Religious Beliefs, But Hurts Women

Helen Alvare, law professor at George Mason University and co-founder of Women Speak For Themselves, writes in USA Today that Obamacare hurts women. Alvare says that the White House, while posing as the protector of “women and families,” in fact degrades women:

The White House stance assumes that women care far more about free access to contraceptives, or their sex lives, than about religious freedom, or allowing businesses to have a conscience. This view of women is degrading. It treats women as one-dimensional victims needing the protection of government-as-big-brother.

Alvare points out that many of the businesses affected by Obamacare’s over-reaching and expensive health care mandates are owned…by women. In fact, more than 10 million women in the U.S. own businesses. According to Alvare, ” Crushing businesses with fines-particularly businesses with women owners-hurts women, rather than helping them.”

Alvare knows that women (in fact, all of us) benefit from job creation, the types of jobs created by Hobby Lobby, which is currently suing the government regarding the HHS mandate. Why is this important to women?

There are thousands of women whose lives are better and whose families are stronger and more secure because of those jobs. Crushing Hobby Lobby just because of its owners religious beliefs would hurt these women, not help them. The last thing our economy needs, and the last thing American families need, is the government shrinking the already too-small pool of available jobs.

Alvare discounts the White House claim that women’s health is somehow at risk if employers are not forced to provided contraceptives and abortificacients to all employees.

That is, to say the least, a highly dubious claim. Women get sick and die, for the most part, of things like heart attacks, strokes and cancer. Their long list of ailments rarely calls for free contraceptives to solve a health problem. In fact, as Judge Janice Rogers Brown recently noted, there are credible medical sources (like the World Health Organization) who now classify some hormonal contraceptives as carcinogens. Americans spend millions of dollars a year to buy chicken and meat that have not been pumped full of synthetic hormones-precisely because they fear the associated medical risks.

But even if the government is right about how we all need easy access to contraceptives all the time, there can be no serious argument that the only way to provide us with our pills is to force unwilling employers to pay for them. Contraceptives are widely available and cheap. And for those who cannot afford them, the government already spends millions of dollars per year providing them for free. With the Obamacare exchanges now open, if the federal government thinks more women need or want this insurance coverage, it now runs a marketplace in which they can get it.

Liberty, Alvare says, is what women need, not Big Brother. And what true feminist wants Big Brother looking over her shoulder anyway?

Read “Obamacare attacks religion, but hurts women” at USA Today.

[product sku=1103]

Elise Hilton

Communications Specialist at Acton Institute. M.A. in World Religions.