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Fluke Flak Fallout

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Last month, Sandra Fluke told a committee of Congressional Democrats that she and other Georgetown law school women are being treated unfairly because they have to pay up to  $3,000 out of their own pockets for birth control during law school. Her testimony was being offered in support of Obama’s healthcare mandate requiring “free” birth control coverage for everyone. The following week Rush Limbaugh referred to Ms. Fluke as a “slut” based on her apparent contention that others should pay the high cost of birth control for her and other female law students. Limbaugh subsequently apologized for choosing “the wrong words in my analogy of the situation,” but not before the media condemned his comment as a hateful attack on women’s reproductive rights, and Obama telephoned Ms. Fluke to tell her that her parents should be proud that she is supporting the concerns of women.

By defining this issue as a “women’s rights” struggle, Democrats and their media allies have once again proven that they have mastered the art of obfuscation through propaganda. Why is a law that forces every taxpayer to subsidize other people’s sex choices a women’s rights issue? Let’s be honest, this has nothing to do with women’s rights. Obama’s healthcare law does not expand or restrict any person’s right to buy or use contraception. What it changes is who must pay for that choice. This is about forcing every solvent taxpayer to pay for the choices of those who believe that “free” birth control benefits should be a “right.”

Obama and his allies are employing an old Saul Alinsky-style community organizing tactic designed to vilify their opponents and shift the public discourse away from the real issues. Limbaugh’s statements gave them the opportunity to transform a gross governmental invasion of personal and religious liberty into a woman’s rights argument. The left’s fake outrage at Limbaugh’s “attack on women” should be compared to and measured by their non-reaction to the many offensive “slut” comments that David Letterman and other liberals made about Sarah Palin and her family.

The essential message of Sandra Fluke’s testimony is: “We f**k, you pay.” She and her fellow students apparently want to make sex choices that others will be forced by law to support financially. Somehow Ms. Fluke and those on the left have come to believe that “free sex” is now a basic right that all financially solvent citizens should be required to underwrite with their tax dollars and government mandated insurance. Those who disagree are accused of attacking “women’s reproductive rights.”  Wouldn’t it be more accurate and honest to call the alleged rights “women’s sex rights,” since the point of contraception is to have sex without reproduction? No one is trying to limit the right to have children, and what those on the left really want is not reproduction, but sex without reproduction. If Fluke and her friends want to have sex 10 times a day no one really cares, but why should we be forced to buy her condoms? Obama’s contention that government mandated birth control coverage is a women’s right issue is true only if requiring others to pay for a woman’s sex choices has somehow become a woman’s right.

The real issue is not “reproductive justice”, “women’s rights”, or restricting access to contraception, but whether every employer and working individual should be forced to buy birth control insurance coverage for themselves and others. To Obama and other Democrats the answer is obviously “yes”, because birth control “benefits” will then be deemed a universal legal “right” that must be provided to everyone. However, if some are allowed to opt out of the mandate, it weakens the argument that “free” contraception is a “right” that must be provided regardless of the individual’s willingness or ability to pay for it. By making  “free” contraception a “right” the law shifts the financial burden for birth control from those who want the benefit to those with the money to pay for it.

If free birth control is a basic “woman’s right,” what’s next? These same law students also, no doubt, have trouble paying for the high cost of gas and groceries. By their logic shouldn’t we also subsidize their even more basic “right” to “free” food and transportation? When people’s wants and needs become “rights,” we will have moved from a free society to socialist totalitarianism.

These alleged woman’s rights issues are being pushed forward by the left to confuse the public and divert attention from the real purpose of the law. At bottom, Obama’s healthcare mandate is just another way to redistribute wealth and expand government’s power over the individual.

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