Emergency Rations

Along with canned goods, bottled water, and first aid kits, it looks like the ladies of the federal government might want to add contraception to the list of things they’re stockpiling in the bunker.

On Sept. 13, OPM officials announced the launch of a faith-based health insurance program for federal workers in Illinois. Operated by OSF Health, which is run by the Sisters of the Third Order of St. Francis, the plan specifically will prohibit payment for contraceptives, abortions, sterilization or artificial insemination.

Call me crazy, but if you don’t “believe” in those things, wouldn’t you avoid participating in them? Do insurance companies get to legislate your faith-based medical choices? Why is it that organizations that insist on not paying for abortion also insist on not paying for contraception?

“This is, in effect, a kind of backdoor way to try to limit this [coverage] down the road, to try to get family planning services out of the program” Martinez said. “You shouldn’t be designing government health programs based on religious doctrine.”

I’m a watchdog over precendent these days, and establishing a plan like this as a “choice” means that it’s okay for insurance providers to establish faith-based exclusions. Combine this with the FDA eyeballing RU-486, and new justices soon to be on the bench, and we’re looking at the bad old days all over again.

The ACLU and Planned Parenthood are two good places to send money right about now.

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