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If the new rule does infringe on religious freedom, which value should prevail: the...
Topic: Political ScienceIf the new rule does infringe on religious freedom, which value should prevail: the government’s interest in promoting women’s health or the individual’s interest in religious freedom?
Obama administration’s rule requiring employers to provide birth control as part of the mandated health coverage without a co-pay.
8 Answers | add yours
I am very conflicted on this issue, but I think that the individual's (though really, this is not about individuals but about institutions like the Catholic Church) interest in religious freedom must prevail here. The reason for this is that the damage done to religious freedom is greater than the damage done to the people who must pay for their contraceptives.
Not to minimize the importance of money, but money is surely less important than religious values. A person who has to pay money that they otherwise would not have to pay is not harmed as much as a person who has to violate their religious beliefs. Therefore, I think that when you balance the competing interests in this conflict, religious liberty is the more important.
Posted by pohnpei397 on March 3, 2012 at 12:37 PM (Answer #2)
High School Teacher
Posted by wannam on March 15, 2012 at 6:04 AM (Answer #3)
Middle School Teacher
I think that just because birth control is available does not mean people are required to use it. Even if someone works for a religious organization, that does not mean the employee is of the same religion. So the employee should not be forced to follow that religion's principles.
Posted by litteacher8 on March 15, 2012 at 7:31 AM (Answer #4)
High School Teacher
If we think of this as a health issue, it becomes difficult to see how any religion in America could muster a real objection.
As this is not a law seeking to mandate the use of contraceptives but instead to mandate certain insurance coverages, I again fail to see how any groups can claim to be offended.
Posted by e-martin on March 15, 2012 at 8:17 AM (Answer #5)
The response of #3 states the crucial problem here. There are religions that oppose blood transfusions, I believe, and for that matter, religions that oppose any medical treatment at all. Allowing any religion to dictate what should or should not be offered to employees who are not employed in an exclusively religious enterprise could result in people dying because transfusions were not covered or dying for lack of any medical treatment. This is a very slippery slope, and I do not think we should step one foot on it. The state has a compelling interest in the life and health of its people. Those who wish to place religious principles over life and health are free to make their own choices on this, but they should not be allowed to make those choices for others.
Posted by speamerfam on March 16, 2012 at 12:27 AM (Answer #6)
Many people, in many instances, have to pay for things they are morally opposed to. I support religious freedom, but as others have pointed out, where do we draw the line, and why do we privilege the Catholic church over religious sects who are opposed to clinical medical treatment in almost all cases by bowing to their concerns in this case? We wouldn't do the same for institutions run by Christian Scientists, I'm fairly certain.
Posted by rrteacher on March 16, 2012 at 3:44 AM (Answer #7)
Big Brother government is never beneficial to the freedom of the individual. When there is socialized medicine and other programs, problems emerge. Among them are the politicizing of these issues. The real fear is that people are losing their individual choices.
Posted by mwestwood on March 16, 2012 at 2:43 PM (Answer #8)
Why does the government have an "interest" in women's health? Shouldn't that be the concern of women, and not the government? By what right does the government assume this power?
In a free country, individuals should be free to choose religious practices, and should be free to choose contraception as one wishes, without government muddling the issues.
Posted by enotechris on March 21, 2012 at 5:17 AM (Answer #9)
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