Oklahoma State Senate Bill: Employers Ain't Gotta Insure Contraceptives Because Women Are Meant To Be Mommies
Oh, hey, here's a new twist on an old story! You already know how having to pay for insurance coverage for birth control is a violation of an employer's sacred right to tell employees how to live, but a genius state Senator in Oklahoma, Clark Jolley (R-Not All That Jolly) has just placed himself in the race for Wonkette Legislative Shitmuffin of the Year by introducing yet another bill that that would allow employers to opt out of covering slut pills.
The opt-out isn't a new idea, but the justification is truly novel: Jolley says he introduced the bill at the request of a constituent, Dr. Dominic Pedulla, of Oklahoma City. Pedulla is a cardiologist, but bills himself as "a natural family planning medical consultant and women's health researcher" and contends that contraception "suppresses and disables" women's true nature:
"Part of their identity is the potential to be a mother," Pedulla said. "They are being asked to suppress and radically contradict part of their own identity, and if that wasn't bad enough, they are being asked to poison their bodies."
We know we are somewhat stepping on the line of regular commenter Callyson here, but, Oh, for fuck's sake.
Dr. Pedulla complained to Sen. Jolley after he found that all small group health plans in Oklahoma required coverage for contraception and sterilization. Rather than pointing out to Pedulla that the insurance plans did not require that he personally get sterilized, despite the obvious benefits to the state and humanity, Jolley instead said, hey, you know what? People with dumb religious convictions should be allowed to make their employees suffer for them! So he introduced this idiotic bill, which passed the Senate Business and Commerce Committee without debate last week, and will now go to the full state Senate.
In a masterful stroke of Wingnut Logic, Pedulla presented as evidence the argument that "Studies show that women using contraceptives consider pregnancy more unwanted than wanted," which is clearly a result of The Pill making ladies think crazy anti-pregnancy thoughts, not merely the sort of thing that a person who already doesn't want to have a baby might say.
Critics of the legislation pointed out that women who have a harder time getting access to birth control are probablyu more likely to experience unwanted pregnancies and thus seek abortions, and then, realizing that they were saying this in goddamned Oklahoma, decided to just drink and pound their heads against their desks.