Thursday, September 27, 2012

Religious Liberty Vs. Contraception Coverage

Kathryn Jean Lopez in the right-wing National Review is among those who believe that my religious liberty can infringe on your life.  Or rather, that employers should be able to decide which medical treatments the health insurance policy they offer their employees covers:

Friday morning, the U.S. District court in Detroit will hear a plea from the Weingartz Supply Company, a Michigan-based, family-owned business, and Legatus, a professional association of Catholic business leaders, for a preliminary injunction to protect them from the HHS mandate requiring employers to pay for insurance covering contraception, sterilization, and abortion-inducing drugs.

If they asked to be protected by some horrible forced feeding of contraceptives to themselves I'd have some sympathy.  But what they ask is to have the right to determine which services their workers' health insurance policies may cover, and that choice, they believe, should be  based not  on medical or economic concerns but on the private beliefs of the owners.

I'm waiting eagerly for a Christian Scientist firm to make a plea for the right to offer only health insurance policies which cover prayer and that's it.  The logic is identical, after all.

The gist of all this is an odd confusion about the rights to practice one's religion and the "rights" to force its consequences on people who may follow a completely different religion or none.  At the same time, religious scruples are privileged over other types of values.