An Ounce Of Prevention

If the reaction and rhetoric surrounding this week’s Hobby Lobby decision by the U.S. Supreme Court is any indication, the political, philosophical, and intellectual divide in this nation may just be beyond repair. From some suggesting terrorist acts like burning down Hobby Lobby stores to the pervasive distortion of facts surrounding the case, the rage exhibited by those opposed to the decision has been as disgusting as it has been revealing of a prevalence of hate, ignorance, and blatant narcissism. And much has already been written about all of that. To me, however, there’s been underlying elements of this case that have been largely ignored but are very important aspects of the debate, and to one of the key pillars of ObamaCare itself.

One of the positive (I use that term cautiously) philosophical concepts contained in ObamaCare is that “preventative care” is key to reducing health care costs in America. I don’t think anyone can disagree with that idea — conceptually. Obviously, if we as Americans take better care of ourselves — eat better, exercise, have regular check-ups, etc. — we can improve, in general, our overall health and, in doing so, theoretically, reduce health care costs.

Of course, the two fundamental questions surrounding that concept are — just how far should the government be able to go in "assisting" us in better taking care of ourselves (think NYC’s ban on Big Gulps), and, perhaps less obviously, what exactly is "preventative care" in the first place?

Which brings us to the HHS mandate on birth control. In ObamaCare, Congress tasked HHS with adopting regulations providing for “preventative care.” While most of us when presented with the concept of “preventative care” probably think of trying to prevent things like obesity, heart disease, cancer, diabetes and the like, the progressive left thinks pregnancy. For many (yes, many, not a handful) in the progressive movement, pregnancy is a disease, no different than cancer or diabetes. One doesn’t "get pregnant," one is afflicted with pregnancy. It is why Planned Parenthood used its $1 billion in influence to help write the HHS mandate in the first place. Pregnancy isn't seen by Planned Parenthood and its progressive minions as the beautiful and incredible gift of bringing new life into the world, it's seen as a cancer to be blotted out and "prevented" whenever possible.

That alone is enough to make those of us who actually celebrate new human beings coming into the world shudder.

Further is the reality that while ObamaCare includes in its mandates on paying for preventative care the ability to end or prevent new life, it does not include mandates on paying for drugs for those living who actually suffer from disease.

Each year, my wife and I pay hundreds and hundreds of dollars in co-pays for medicines she has to take because she suffers from heart disease and other ailments as a result of leukemia and two heart attacks experienced several years ago. Frankly, I have no problem paying those co-pays. I have a job, it includes health insurance, and part of having insurance includes the reality that we have the responsibility to pay part of the cost of medicine. I do so gladly. Medicines help keep her alive.

So when I then hear the Sandra Flukes of the world, the media types who worship her and the politicians who cower to her whining about wanting me to also pay for her birth control – her birth control! – either through insurance or government benefit, while they don’t give a rip about the millions of Americans having to pay for medicines to stay alive, I’m sorry, but I have no patience and absolutely no sympathy.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I don’t believe the government should be involved in either case, whether it be birth control or heart disease. Our health care is our responsibility as individuals; it isn’t the responsibility of the national collective. You want birth control — get out of your parent’s basement, get a job and pay for it. Go to work someplace that provides for it. I have the responsibility of providing health insurance for my family and for the associated costs of our health care. I happily do so. I don't expect nor would I demand your help.

By elevating birth control above the life-saving drugs that millions of Americans depend on the progressive left reveals itself to be entirely void of true compassion, and driven primarily by sexual narcissism. Beyond protecting religious freedom, perhaps the most important thing the Supreme Court did this week is reveal that fact.