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March 12, 2012 at 4:00 PM

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Contraception and the war against women

Sandra Fluke’s spotlight

Editor, The Seattle Times:

War against women? How about being intellectually honest? [“War against women,” Opinion, March 9.]

There is no “war against women” in the context of health care. The Seattle Times editorial board is framing the issue dishonestly to make people think this is a serious issue.

The fact is, contraception should not be required by any health-care insurance. The fact is President Obama does not have the power to require any of this. That is the job of the Congress.

Women want to be empowered? Then buy your own contraception. The public shouldn’t be required to pay for many things that the government requires insurance companies to pay.

The government mandating insurance companies to pay for frivolous services is a big reason that health-care insurance is so expensive.

And make no mistake, (or purposely leave out the fact) that Sandra Fluke is a longtime activist for this issue.

She put herself in the spotlight and deserves the scrutiny and criticism she gets.

Women will vote all right. I am betting women are smarter than The Seattle Times thinks and The Times will be seriously disappointed in the results of the next election.

— Christopher Van Auken, Buckley

Free contraception is not a women’s right

In the March 9 editorial “War against women” The Seattle Times erroneously characterizes Rush Limbaugh’s “inappropriate” labeling of Sandra Fluke as a “ridiculous shadow war on women and their health-care rights.”

I don’t know a time in my 90-plus years when women have had a right to free contraception, except the two natural kinds: abstinence and “rhythm.”

The whole issue, as raised by activist Fluke, is whether people buying health insurance should have to pay for other people’s contraception as a right.

She claims that her three-year cost of contraception is $3,000, and should be covered under her health insurance.

Will someone please tell me why free contraception is a woman’s right?

One final thought: If Fluke’s claim of $3,000 over three years is valid, that’s $1,000 a year! She must be active enough to merit Rush’s label.

— Maurice E. Marler, Renton

There is a lack of understanding

The recent congressional panel on birth control conducted by Rep. Darrell Issa clearly demonstrated that the voices of women in this country do not matter to legislators trying to limit access to family-planning services [“Politics again plays tough with women’s bodies,” NWTuesday, March 6].

It saddens me that the testimony of Sandra Fluke, an articulate and rational voice for a generation of American women, was only heard at an unofficial hearing after-the-fact.

Rush Limbaugh’s attack on Fluke was sexist and uneducated. His comments revealed his total lack of understanding in that he believes there is a correlation between Fluke’s sexual activity and her ability to pay for and utilize birth control.

To Limbaugh I respond with this: One of my best friends, a recent college graduate (with honors) was in a committed, healthy relationship with her boyfriend of two years when she fractured her hand and was forced to quit her job. Uninsured and unable to pay the exorbitant cost of her contraceptive, my friend became pregnant.

She made the personal and important choice to have an abortion. She is successful and happy today. Had anyone in the government stood up for her right to basic contraceptive coverage, the abortion would have been unnecessary. But, please, continue to ignore your culpability in the matter.

I celebrate the fundamental truth in Jay Inslee’s assertion that it is “beyond reason that women are still forced to battle for something as basic as contraception in the year 2012.”

— Sophie DeWitt, Tacoma

Oppression and bullying

The recent editorials, articles and letters regarding oppression and bullying of women have generated more heat than light. The issue was never denial of contraception but rather who would be forced to pay for yet another mandate. And, if we want to address bullying in our society we should start with our president, the bully-in-chief.

How else would one characterize his attempt to force Catholic organizations to purchase products that are incompatible with their religious tenets?

— John Prueitt, Seattle

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Hm. Our insurance premiums shouldn't pay for a woman's contraception, because that's... MORE
I'm more than happy to pay for another woman's contraception with increased premiums. T... MORE
For sure this debate has highlighted how woefully ignorant people (mostly men) are... MORE

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