So right now—and for the next four years—women with serious medical conditions will be denied the comprehensive coverage they might need if they experience a complicated pregnancy.
Once again, women are denied rights that men have,
So, stop blaming the victims and trivializing what is a real issue for chronically ill women. Just because they're sick doesn't mean they've stopped being human and having human urges and feelings.
I get that bureaucrats in the insurance industry currently make the decisions, but as long as I pay my premiums, I can get good care.
This isn't your problem, which doesn't make you wrong, it just allows you to be removed from the underlying issue that has people worked up
Judah, you're explaining feminist history to ME??
You keep going on and on about how women CHOOSE to have sex, so what do they expect?
What I did say, and what I think just about everyone here but you gets is that this decision disregards a block of people who put Obama where he is.
also, just for fun, google "blaming the victim."
Why do you write off these women? I've asked you before and you haven't answered
I really am interested in your answer. Have you ever thought about it?
(And, please, I'm not talking about abortion rights as I've said a gazillion times. I'm talking about medically appropriate health care.)
Actually Judah, I AM an expert. Truly and for real.
When have I ever mentioned Obama, or advocated not supporting his presidency?
you are remarkably ill-informed. No offense or anything, but you are. For instance, in spite of what you say, abortions are actually very, very, very low-risk procedures.
Keeping in mind through all of this that the fucking abortion isn't exactly risk-free either.
And you seem to know very little about how limited birth control options can be, or what a success rate for a method translates into in numbers of pregnancies even among the most consistent users. Or of the very serious complications different methods can have.
And your assertion that women in these risk panels can just not have sex is.....bizarre. Truly it is.
I know you think my claiming expert status in this issue is out of line, but since I... close to an expert as SLOG gets on this one.
And as a clinician who works with women all day, every day, I am all about what public policy looks like at the individual level.
I lost dear friends in that time---I have some idea of what that might have been like for you.
I couldn't grok something fundamental about your posts--there was something puzzling about your insistence on talking about legal rights, about refusing to see this as a public health issue. I understand you better now.
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Very very bad decision.
1) They're not saying women can't have abortions. They're just saying they're not going to pay for them with that fund. There are various other ways to get cheap(er) abortions.
2) Except in certain cases (rape), women do have a choice about getting pregnant. Of course it would be disingenuous to suggest that any human being in the history of the world has exercised uniformly good judgment about sex, but it's not like a woman can just be walking down the street and be struck pregnant by god (and if she was, we probably wouldn't want her to terminate). This isn't breast cancer we're talking about. It's a procedure to mitigate the negative impact of something you don't have to do.
3) Of course, none of that matters when we're being self-righteous and uptight. By all means. Carry on.
Yeah, I applied that approach when I voted for Nader in 2000. I did it in Washington, so it didn't end up amounting to anything here, but if you think there's no difference between Obama and whoever the GOP fields, just remember 9/11, and think about what might have happened if we'd had anyone besides Bush in office.
*Well, not word for word, but you know what I mean.
Because...? And, before you answer, keep in mind that Bush used it as an excuse to legalize torture, overwrite the War Powers Act, and turn the entire rest of the world against us. Prosecuting the "war on terror" ineffectively -- which we don't actually know that Gore would have -- could hardly have been more destructive to our national interests.
Women are fifty-two percent of the electorate. Please explain to me how that qualifies them as a "vulnerable population".
When the Republicans can make them look immoral, you know they’re fucked.
Yes, and the post in question ends with, "I understand the politics at work here, but on a gut level—on a humane level—I wish that sacrificing women's health didn't translate into more votes for democrats."
Not some women, but women generally. And, unless Cienna is one of the sub-group you're talking about, her interest in this is certainly not the interest of a vulnerable sub-population; this is being presented as a women's issue, generally.
Being snide about someone else's perfectly reasonable inference just makes you look like a dick. You should try another approach.
my sister has limes disease and is therefor taking many drugs that would almost certainty cause either major, devastating birth defects or spontaneous abortion (i.e.. miscarriage), if she were to become pregnant. These drugs make it possible for her to attend school and hold down a job and maybe, someday be cured.
She is 22, in a relationship with a long term boyfriend, and takes every possible precaution against pregnancy, pills and condoms. But several of the drugs she is on lessen the effectiveness of the pill, and condoms are far from 100%.
your argument is specious and unhelpful.
Once again, women are denied rights that men have, and this time, in the name of crap midterm election politics.
That said, it still sucks - there are many scenarios where abortion is the more humane choice for the child.
The reason that the future exchange plans are less restrictive is that the privately-administered plans that cover abortion have to separate the costs of any abortion coverage from any other services that receive federal subsidy (including, and especially, the subsidies that will be provided to individuals to buy plans on the exchange).
Further, insurance companies are under no obligation to offer abortion coverage in the exchanges, and I presume even if they did, they could refuse to offer abortion coverage to high-risk patients.
So, yes, the Hyde Amendment is stupid and it sucks. But Obama didn't write the Hyde Amendment. Talk to the fuckers in Congress who keep attaching it to budgetary bills.
Conservatives say "Jump!" Obama says "how high?"
Conservatives think "Jump"
Obama says "how high? how many times?"
Obama just jumping all on his own like
a kangaroo on crack......
Nothing in your comment actually contradicts the elements of my argument. If pregnancy would put your sister's life at risk, she has the option of just not having the kinds of sex that can get her pregnant. Or she can use an IUD. Or she can use condoms and rhythm. And so on.
Your claim that my arguments are specious and unhelpful would carry more weight if you actually addressed my arguments in some meaningful way.
Your comparison is inapposite. Abortion is not the same thing, medically or socially as viagra. Nor is the issue under discussion about whether or not women can get the procedure at all, as you seem to suggest with the line, "men who aren't married getting Viagra". It's not about whether women can get abortions. It's about whether the government will pay for them.
And that line is just silly. Women and men are biologically different -- of course medical treatments for them and the payment schedules for such are going to be different.
That said, women do have rights that men don't. Like, for example, the right not to sign up for the draft, or be drafted into combat. But, again, that's not really what we're talking about here.
People, Do you think Bush solely masterminded EVERYTHING for 8 years? NO, you don't. Please do not assume that everything that comes out of the government is Obama's fault.
Don't be like those baiting fox news assholes, Pretend your better than that.
also @41, totally agree, it's not one man, it's the whole system
That said, there are a lot of people who consider abortion murder. Some, I'm sure, have ulterior fundamentalist motives, but for many of them it's a sincere belief. Disagree with their arguments all you want, but I don't see how it's justifiable to pay for abortions with their tax money. No one likes having someone else's morality imposed on them, right?
Because you've wrapped up the entire argument with your keen and incisive commentary? Okeydokey.
Judah, this is really a public health issue. The women in these risk pools shouldn't be pregnant. They have cancer, or rheumatoid arthritis, or sickle cell disease. And yep, they can use contraception, but even IUDs and tubal ligations fail. And so why should they have to jump through hoops to get a medically appropriate procedure that's available for the rest of the population? News flash: you don't check your sexuality at the door to the cancer ward.
Are there any abortion providers out there besides me who have had to use the "life of the mother" exception? I'm wondering how strictly the access is enforced, how many people have to sign off, how long approval takes, etc. The two states where I've worked haven't made it a big burden to get the exception, but I've heard that in other states the mother has to be in imminent danger of death, that preservation of her health wasn't good enough to get the procedure covered. (and don't even get me started on states where the paperwork itself is part of the harassment of abortion providers, e.g., Pennsylvania)
Right, and that's terrible. So why would you be in favor of something similar happening to someone else? I suppose "I have to pay for things I'm deeply and fundamentally opposed to, so you should too" isn't the worst reason in the world, but it doesn't strike me as especially compelling either.
By the way, this was my argument against massive government involvement in healthcare. Beneficial as it may be, it also gives the Republicans unprecedented power to limit the availability of procedures they find immoral. I mean, what did everyone think was going to happen? It'd be nice if the Democrats weren't so spineless, but either way, they're not going to be in charge forever.
And lest we forget, the women covered by this new ruling are PAYING for their insurance, not getting it free. Why shouldn't they be covered?
Because in real life, they have about the same abortion rate as everyone else.
They say one thing, and do another.
Here's the ACLU's action item on this, if you feel like messaging Obama and the HHS.
@46 "And yep, they can use contraception, but even IUDs and tubal ligations fail."
Over 99% effective is nothing to sneeze at, and if you, say, combine an IUD, condoms, and a hormonal BC -- well, probabilities were never my strong suit, but those are great odds.
Personally, I've never had a BC failure, but I've seen them in patients with IUDs, vasectomies, pills, and so forth. Hell, even women with documented ovarian failure have a 5-10% spontaneous pregnancy rate. So, stop blaming the victims and trivializing what is a real issue for chronically ill women. Just because they're sick doesn't mean they've stopped being human and having human urges and feelings. Why can't they get covered for an appropriate medical procedure, particularly when they are PAYING for their insurance?
The phrase "blaming the victim" comes from a cultural dialogue, 30 years ago, about how society treats rape victims. It is notable for describing a situation in which there was both blame, and a victim. A woman who has sex and who gets pregnant in spite of her use of contraceptives that she knows might fail is not a victim, and pointing out that she took a calculated risk and lost is not blaming her. Especially not if the thing she lost is a subsidized abortion. Not the right to an abortion, mind you -- just the subsidy.
Every political issue has people who can't see the forest for the trees: gun rights advocates who claim that requiring trigger locks deprives them of a vital constitutional right, and so on. The frustrating thing about arguing with people like that is that they're not arguing the point -- they're arguing the issue. Right now, you're one of those and there's basically no point in getting into it with you.
Having insurance means people who are neither you nor your doctor get involved in your medical decisions. If it's private insurance, the people getting involved in your medical decisions are bureaucrats. If it's public insurance, the people getting involved in your medical decisions are politicians (and government bureaucrats). The alternative is to pay for it yourself. That alternative is still open to the women affected by this issue. It's disingenuous to suggest that this case of interference is crossing some kind of sacred ethical line.
Uh. Ha-ha? You're kidding, right? Trial lawyers make millions of dollars every year forcing insurance companies to meet their obligations to their customers. Paying your premiums is hardly a guarantee that you'll get what you paid for. And insurance companies do make ideologically-motivated decisions about who gets treatment and what kind of treatment they get. Ask an AIDS patient from the early '80s. Oh, wait, you can't -- they're all dead.
So... my opinion doesn't count because I'm supposedly looking at the question too intellectually? Interesting. And you say you stopped calling yourself a Republican?
My mother has bad case of multiple sclerosis and pretty much raised the three of us by herself. During one of the brief periods my mother remarried, she got pregnant with twins in her mid forties. Our family completely relied on the state and government for income. If she had had those babies, she would have died. Luckily, the government funded her abortion (even though she wanted the kids, she didn't want to leave us). Now this is no longer possible due to some right wing controlling religious bigots. This is not okay. I am not religious, I don't believe that life started at conception, and neither did my mother. Why should these already sick, poor women have to pay for something they should get because they woul DIE otherwise. I'm just glad that my mother is going through menopause.
Actually Judah, I was referencing William Ryan's book, circa 1970, called Blaming the Victim, which explores our cultural bias which lays the fault of poverty on the poor, and blames the powerless for their lack of power. In this case you are blaming women for having chronic medical problems and suggesting that maybe they just shouldn't be putting themselves at risk of pregnancy by having sex.
You keep going on and on about how women CHOOSE to have sex, so what do they expect? and they should pay the piper. People have sex and birth control fails and these women have medical problems that put them at risk in pregnancy. Excuse me, but abortion is a medical procedure, perfectly appropriate in these cases for prevention of complications of pregnancy, and these women are paying for medical insurance. The care should NOT be denied on ideological grounds.
Do we withhold cancer treatment from smokers because, hey! they should have known better? Do we tell HIV-infected drug users that they need to suck it up and pay for their own cocktails because it's their own fault they got the virus? Do we refuse Viagra to men who have the health habits that put them at the risk of ED (obesity, smoking)? No and no and no!
Once again, these women are the ones for whom pregnancy might be risky. They're diabetic, they have cancer, their health might be compromised by pregnancy (which, hello?, I do know a thing or two about, since I do high-risk OB care). If they choose to take on those risks and continue the pregnancy, fine, but why should an abortion be something they to pay for out-of-pocket?
But one in three American women (that's one in six Americans) has had an abortion. This is not marginal or rare. These are hardly unique situations. These women are our mothers, our sisters, our daughters, and our wives.
Study after study shows that the majority of Americans support abortion rights. Americans are fair-minded people, in general. So why is the administration caving on as aspect of this issue that isn't even "choice"-related? Reproductive care IS health care. This (abortions for women who have good medical reasons to seek them) is health care at its most basic.
No. I was telling you why the phrase you were using was loaded and inappropriate. Not that I don't find your incredulous tone about me explaining feminist history to YOU kind of funny.
No, I don't. What I keep saying is that there are a bunch of ways to reduce the likelihood of pregnancy and that if you can't use one, you can probably use another and that, short of that, if a woman can't afford an abortion and getting pregnant MIGHT KILL HER, it might be a good idea not to have sex. There are plenty of medical conditions and economic circumstances that make having sex a bad idea. This is, evidently, one of them.
Oh, I get it. I just think it's bullshit. I think it's a relatively uncommon problem that affects a relatively small number of women and that it's being blown up into an issue for all women and all abortion rights advocates everywhere because some people on the left are stupid enough to want to conflate the right to have an abortion with the right to have the government pay for it. It's a bad idea on its face, and a bullshit argument in any event, and it will end up costing the Democrats more than it gains them.
@64 -- Private insurers do, actually, do most of the things you mention. They raise premiums or reduce coverage for smokers, they don't pay for viagra, they have pre-existing condition policies that cut out big swaths of people -- mostly poor people who live with environmental factors that increase their risk of certain kinds of illnesses. And, again, in the early '80s, it was extremely difficult for AIDS patients to get various treatments associated with their illness.
That turns out to be exactly what you were saying. Wow. Just wow.
(also, just for fun, google "blaming the victim." The first two references are the Willian Ryan and his ideas. We don't see anything about rape until the third entry---your idea that the phrase only references rape is odd, and possibly unique to you)
Why do you write off these women? I've asked you before and you haven't answered: do you think your sexuality dies when you get a chronic illness? Do you think someone is less human because they're sick? You don't seem to think they're less human if they're convicted of breaking the law. Why the difference?
You keep telling me this is a just(!) a constitutional issue, but it's really a healthcare issue. This is not about choice, it's about what is needed to maintain health for these women. Why do you insist that their sexual lives and their health are trivial?
The issue under discussion here isn't abortions generally. It's abortions for women in a certain risk pool, somewhere between women whose lives are obviously in danger as a result of their pregnancy and women who are in no danger -- an increased risk pool, that still falls short of clear risk.
Yeah, that sounds really fun. I'll do that.
I'm not writing anyone off. That's how you're choosing to interpret my statements, so I'm disinclined to get into an argument with you about why I'm doing something I'm not doing so that you can show me how wrong I am about the thing I'm not saying. Otherwise, against my better judgment, I'll spell this out for you: prison rape is unconstitutional because the Eighth Amendment prohibits cruel and unusual punishment; actually building a prison system that enables and condones prison rape violates that prohibition. The right to an abortion is protected (and this point is extremely debatable) by the "penumbral" right of privacy. That's the right to have one, not the right to have it paid for. The right to have it paid for is a creature of statute, and can be taken away as easily as anything else the government gives you -- road funding or public schools or any of the rest of it. It doesn't address a constitutional right. It addresses money.
There. That was a nice long paragraph. I'm sure there are fifteen or twenty things in there you can misunderstand and mischaracterize. Knock yourself out.
do you think your sexuality dies when you get a chronic illness?
I really am interested in your answer. Have you ever thought about it?
(And, please, I'm not talking about abortion rights as I've said a gazillion times. I'm talking about medically appropriate health care.)
Yeah, I suppose I might have thought about the question once or twice during the four years I nursed my father until he died of AIDS when I was 17. But never mind all that. Please, tell me more of your views about illness and sexuality, and what sort of measures are reasonable to expect from someone who might die from sex. I want to know what you think, because you're obviously such a fucking expert.
That phrase doesn't mean anything. Like, seriously -- nothing. So basically, you're talking about your opinion. Guess how relevant that is.
I'm sorry about your dad. Now I understand you way better. Seriously, I do.
Imagine if your dad had access to a really great AIDS cocktail that could have saved his life, and he had finally gotten insurance to pay for it. And imagine that he had some other medical problem that threw him out of the protocol, a treatable problem, but one that had to be addressed or he couldn't get the drugs he needed. And suppose no one would give him that treatment under his new insurance, for arbitrary reasons having nothing to do with him or his illness, but just because. He could buy it, but you guys were broke from paying for all the other stuff, and it was a real hardship, meaning you (Judah) or he might do without food, or something. And you had very limited resources to tap, and limited time to tap them.....
Wouldn't you be outraged? Why are you not outraged now?
No, you're not. You might be some kind of professional, and you might even be good at your job, but you're not an expert and your tone-deaf responses to this issue and your pathetic, "now imagine..." scenario prove that, at least to my satisfaction.
My dad got sick in 1982. If you think I never had to stand by and watch the federal government say, sometimes in as many words, "Well, AIDS only kills gay men and junkies, so we're not going to spend any money providing care or trying to find a cure," you're an idiot. I understand the scenario you're describing perfectly, and I'm telling you that your moral math on the subject is self-serving and wrong. The Obama presidency is saving lives. It's repairing American relations abroad, it's getting funding for programs at home that will keep today's children from becoming tomorrow's criminals. And he's protecting the rights of women, GLBTQ people, and ethnic and religious minorities. He may not be doing it as quickly and effectively as we'd all like, but he's working on it. And undercutting that presidency because of a break in funding for a procedure to treat a preventable illness (dangerous pregnancy) for a minority of women who are in a risk category for pregnancies that falls short of a clear threat to the mother's life is a bad call. Only a small percentage of women meet those criteria, and only a small percentage of those women won't have friends or family who can loan them the money or a credit card or whatever to cover the bills and get the procedure that will save their lives. And of that tiny tiny minority, I'm reasonably confident that someone somewhere can afford to backstop for them. Maybe state government, maybe private money -- whatever. Keeping in mind through all of this that the fucking abortion isn't exactly risk-free either.
I have no illusions about Obama not being a political sell-out, but I was convinced when I voted for him in the primary, and I remain convinced, that he is as far to the left as we can get on most issues that matter. Pushing points like this one won't push Obama to the left, or get us another president who goes farther to the left. What it'll do is, it'll keep Democrats home in November 2012, and hand this county back to the people who gave us Bush. And we'll see what abortion rights look like under whoever the fuck that president turns out to be.
That's my position on this. It's a reasonably informed position based on a broad historical and political perspective. You don't agree with it? Fine. But for the love of god, stop trying to convince yourself that the only reason I don't agree with you is because I'm too thick to recognize how smart you are, and how much you know.
One thing that is continually surprising to me about the way you write is your assumption you know all about reproductive care for women when you are remarkably ill-informed. No offense or anything, but you are. For instance, in spite of what you say, abortions are actually very, very, very low-risk procedures. Compared to the statistically much more frequent and more severe complications of pregnancy and delivery, they are several orders of magnitude less risky. And you seem to know very little about how limited birth control options can be, or what a success rate for a method translates into in numbers of pregnancies even among the most consistent users. Or of the very serious complications different methods can have. And your assertion that women in these risk panels can just not have sex is.....bizarre. Truly it is. (I know you think my claiming expert status in this issue is out of line, but since I prescribe contraception, deliver babies, do abortions, and care for chronically ill women pregnant and not, including counseling them about sexual issues related to their illnesses, I'm as close to an expert as SLOG gets on this one....)
Obviously I offended you in talking about AIDS. I am sorry. I am substantially older than you --- I was in medical school when your dad got sick. That first wave was horrible. We didn't know what we were dealing with at first, and the response of the Reagan administration (which you characterize quite accurately) was despicable. (I will never, as long as I live, forget that in the middle of all that horror that idiot was trying to dismantle the CDC). I lost dear friends in that time---I have some idea of what that might have been like for you.
If you were interested in a conversation, I would talk to you about your stance on legal rights for the prison population (which I share, btw), I could point out that the constitution gives me the right to counsel, but that my access to counsel if I can't pay is a less secure right. I could then draw a parallel to abortion access, but I don't think you can have a conversation about this.
And I will sign off here. I couldn't grok something fundamental about your posts--there was something puzzling about your insistence on talking about legal rights, about refusing to see this as a public health issue. I understand you better now.
The entry all these comments are about is about how the Obama administration did this for political reasons. Try to keep up.
Then you said:
What I actually said was:
"Very very very low risk" (whatever the fuck that means) is not risk-free. Additionally, if a patient has a health condition that makes pregnancy risky, it seems to me that some of those conditions might also make an abortion riskier than it otherwise would be. Meanwhile, since you totally misquoted the thing I'm supposedly ill-informed about, please provide another example of an assertion I've made about women's health that's ill-informed. Oh wait, you can't, because you're "signing off".
You have no basis for any of those claims. None. I didn't quote any numbers about the effectiveness of any method of birth control, nor have I posted anything claiming to be an exhaustive list of available methods, nor have I made claims or denials about complications that may result from using a certain method or methods of birth control.
Again, not an iota of supporting anything on your assertion. Just your special magical status as an expert. Of course, I've seen plenty of people take significant breaks from sex -- sometimes for years at a time -- when they or their partners became HIV+. But never mind all that. Some educated idiot on the internet told me that nobody can ever stop having sex, so I must have imagined it.
None of that makes you an expert on human sexuality. It makes you a qualified expert on certain aspects of human sexual biology. There's a difference, and the difference is significant to this discussion.
Uh-huh. Boy, that sounds vaguely familiar... oh wait. There it is. Waaaaay back up at @54 where I said you couldn't see the forest for the trees, that you weren't arguing the point, you were arguing the issue, and there was no point in getting into this with you. You sure proved me wrong on that one.
No, I'm reasonably confident that you don't. But keep asserting that you do. That's really working for me.
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