Saturday, March 3, 2012
Sandra Fluke, Discussing Why Contraceptives Matter to Women's Health
Over the last few days, Rush Limbaugh's decision to call Sandra Fluke a prostitute has received a lot of news coverage. Sadly, Limbaugh's entirely inaccurate representation of Fluke seem to be getting a lot more press than Fluke's actual remarks - even some of Fluke's defenders haven't done their homework. Which is why I am posting her video. And why I'm not providing any links to his comments - he's enough press.
Whatever you may think about this issue, please really consider this law student's account of how actual, living women - many of whom need birth control prescriptions for reasons unrelated to pregnancy - are currently prevented from receiving those prescriptions, even though they are paying for their own insurance. Her account is specifically about Georgetown University, but she includes some examples of women who are in even worse positions. While Georgetown allows the insurance company (remember - students are paying the insurance on their own, un-subsidized by Georgetown) to cover birth control prescriptions that are unrelated to pregnancy, some women are turned away simply because the insurance company believes they and their doctors are lying. And women who have insurance affiliated with other religious institutions sometimes have no health exemption for problems like ovarian cysts.
So yes - yes, there are issues of religious liberty to consider. I recognize that. But this is also a question of women's health, and it's also a question of personal liberty - if a woman pays for unsubsidized insurance, shouldn't she have a voice in what is covered?
So when Limbaugh tries to characterize her plea as a request "to be paid to have sex," he not only treats her with no respect as an individual - he also reveals just how little he thinks of a woman's basic rights.