The high price paid in terms of religious liberty, personal health, and marital happiness
In a clear violation of the First Amendment, Barack Obama – who should know better as a former senior lecturer in constitutional law – continues to try and force all Catholic nonprofits to provide their employees with so-called “modern methods of birth control.” Even the largely abortifacient Morning After Pill is included. It is “preventative health care,” his administration claims, and must be “free” for the asking.
The American bishops have rejected this unlawful mandate and have asked Congress to pass a law rescinding it. Their position is that the mandate violates the deeply held religious beliefs of all Catholics. As the head of a pro-life Catholic apostolate, I would add that it is also a direct assault on our own God-given mission: to protect and defend innocent unborn life.
You see, the pill – along with all its injectable and implantable counterparts – is a really nasty piece of work.
First of all, it is potentially abortifacient, which is a fancy way of saying that it kills unborn children. Most American women simply don’t know that the pill they swallow with their morning orange juice can cause early-term abortions. They don’t know that, while on the pill, they (1) may still ovulate, (2) may still conceive a child, and (3) may then abort that child. This is one of the ways that the pill works.
This hard truth would probably give even Sandra Fluke pause – remember, she was the law school student who complained to a committee of the U.S. Senate that Georgetown University wouldn’t give her “free” birth control –if she knew about it. Not that I necessarily blame her for her ignorance. How many American women, including Catholics, have been sold a bill of goods where contraception is concerned? You can’t give your “informed consent” if you are not informed in the first place.
“The pill is not a warm little fuzzy harmless object,” one doctor noted to me. “It causes significant harm to women. As a practicing physician, I see the fallout every day – young women with early breast cancer, cervical cancer, blood clots in their legs, strokes, Human Papillomavirus (HPV). But women aren’t told. Informed consent provisions are widely violated.”
We warn elderly ladies about the dangers of Hormone Replacement Therapy. We avoid hormone-laced beef. We insist that athletes stay away from steroids, and charge them with a crime if they use them anyway. And then we turn around hand out powerful, steroid-based drugs to young women like Sandra Fluke, deceiving them into thinking that taking megadoses of these powerful drugs to chemically disable their reproductive systems is completely harmless. How could it be?
How many women know that tens of thousands of Norplant users became ill after having the hormone-laden capsules implanted under their skin? Over 50,000 women filed lawsuits against Norplant’s manufacturer and some also sued their own doctors for failure to adequately disclose the type and severity of Norplant’s adverse side effects. How many women know that popular contraceptive pills, the patch, the ring, injectables, implants and IUDs have also been the subject of class action lawsuits because of the harm they have caused women?
Those who claim that birth control is simply “preventative care,” like those in the Obama administration, are deceiving the public. As any doctor can tell you, true preventative care in the area of reproductive health involves examining patients for diseases of the reproductive system, performing breast exams looking for breast cancer, doing pap smears looking for cervical cancer, and referring for mammograms and ordering colonoscopies.