The Seattle Times editorial, "Birth control is part of health care," reprinted in the Feb. 10 Record-Courier, had serious omissions and misstatements. The recent proposed revisions to the Affordable Care Act's "contraceptive" mandate includes coverage for abortifacient drugs such as Plan B and ella, IUDs and sterilization, as well as "birth control benefits and contraceptives."
Many individual Americans and organizations consider some or all of these immoral and contrary to their deeply held religious beliefs. They should not be coerced by law to pay for these "services."
The services are not free; the government has mandated insurers to pay for them. They will pass the cost on to consumers, including those with moral and religious objections. Further, the revision does not exempt "nonprofit religious organizations -- such as universities, charities and hospitals," from the mandate. The government's own explanation of the revision (see cciio.com.gov) states, "... this proposal would not expand the universe of employer plans that would qualify for the exemption beyond that which was intended in the 2012 final rules."
Finally, the revisions explicitly exclude "secular employers who have private religious objections." But the Constitution guarantees the free exercise of religion to all individuals. One does not forfeit this right just because one employs others. Those who wish to avail themselves of these "services" are free to pay for them either directly or through insurers who freely choose to cover them.
Forcing insurers, organizations or individuals to pay for them in violation of their consciences is tyrannical and unconstitutional.
Raymond J. Adamek, Kent