While the noise about the Catholic bishops’ attack on insurance coverage for contraception has diminished, this will continue to be an issue in the Presidential election. The following comments that I made last month are still fully relevant and are worth repeating.
The religious right and other critics continue to misconstrue the President's agenda. The controversy over contraception and religion is only the latest attempt.
As a Catholic woman, I feel strongly that the anti-choice zealots are promoting religious discrimination in the name of religious freedom. Why should anyone be denied health care coverage that everyone else gets — just because their employer has a religious objection? Religious freedom does not mean the freedom to discriminate or oppress. As a fierce supporter of women's rights — and a lifelong Catholic — I support the no cost option for contraception the Affordable Care Act provides because it is the right thing to do. I'm not alone.
While the attacks on President Obama may be political, they are also a part of a larger Republican war on women's rights. Contraception is a key element of preventative health care for women, and assuring access to preventive care for women is one battle we must not lose.
Suggesting the President is ordering the Catholic Church, its followers, or anyone else to use contraception is nonsense. No one will be required to use contraception. And churches and houses of worship will continue to be exempt from the requirement to offer insurance that covers contraception.
The President has a strong record of leading with his values and his faith. All of us — fair-minded men and women alike — must support the President by making our opinions heard now, and in November with our VOTE!
What you can do now:
- Speak out. Support women's health and women's rights in letters to the editor, letters or emails to elected officials, and wherever else the issue comes up. Visit Express yourself on our website for addresses. And leave a comment on the SarasotaDems Facebook page!
- Protect your right to vote! Sign up to Vote by Mail at www.srqelections.com . It's easy, avoids Election Day hassles, and helps guarantee that your vote will be counted
In the end, it will be your vote that matters most for the future of women's rights and for America. Join me in standing up for what is right.