In Mark Steyn’s column cited in the previous post, that astute commentator reminds that contraception is not at the crux of the current controversy, but choice:
Glenn Reynolds, the Instapundit, distills the current hysteria thus: “It’s as if we passed a law requiring mosques to sell bacon and then, when people objected, responded by saying ‘What’s wrong with bacon? You’re trying to ban bacon!!!!’”
. . . .
People are free to buy bacon, and free to buy condoms. But the state has no compelling interest to force either down your throat.
Emphasis added. It’s not just conservatives who get it. As John McCormack reports in the Weekly Standard, even moderates are on board:
Scott Brown, the moderate Massachusetts Republican senator who is up for reelection this fall, went on the offensive against the mandate in a series of interviews last week. He framed the issue as an assault on religious freedom that was a result of the national takeover of the health care system.
“This latest mandate under government-controlled health care is one reason why I campaigned and voted against Obamacare in the first place,” Brown wrote in an op-ed for the Boston Herald. “It operates by broad dictation from Washington, showing no respect for the judgment, needs, or rights of individual Americans and the states. And it opens the door to endless abuses of power such as this latest mandate.”
Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire, Brown’s fellow freshman Republican senator from the Northeast, is also an outspoken opponent. “This is not a women’s rights issue,” she said at a press conference in the Capitol. “This is a religious liberty issue, and it can apply to all faiths. And I’ve heard from my constituents, who are deeply, deeply concerned about this. We need to respect the rights of conscience for all religions.” The entire Republican party appears to be united behind some legislative proposal to reverse Obama’s mandate.
Let us hope more Republicans can summarize the issue as smartly and succinctly as have Steyn, Brown and Ayotte. It’s not a women’s rights issues; it’s a freedom issue.