Women’s rights threatened by a political bureaucracy
I am, by no means, a woman who cares to take birth control. I am personally not a fan of it because of the effects it has on my body and hormones. However, how I feel about taking the supplement only applies to me alone. Although I do not enjoy taking birth control for myself, I am very aware and understanding of the positive effects it has on numerous other women. Because science it critical to human survival, I am an advocate for proper medication and taking care of one’s health.
Birth control for women does so much more for their health than just prevent unwanted pregnancy and this is what many political leaders need to understand.
Recently, President Donald J. Trump and his administration issued a new regulation to employers to be able to refuse birth control pills that are covered by insurance for their employees. If the method of using birth control pills goes against any employer’s religion or beliefs, they now have that right to refuse the coverage. But I must wonder, does this notion not contradict the First Amendment of the Constitution for the United States? Yes, it does contradict. According to the Bill of Rights, the First Amendment protects its citizens to have freedom of speech, press, and religion, however, “Congress should make no law respecting an establishment of religion.” Also, being that we are a nation forged through the free democracy of separating church and state means, this is a “…principle that government must maintain an attitude of neutrality toward religion.”
Of course, this new rule issued by President Trump is by far no way a neutral agreement for the American people and especially for women.
Women in society have gone through a series of obstacles since the beginning of mankind. We have strived to give ourselves a voice in our communities and vouch that our gender is equal to that of a man. This new contraceptive mandate rollback is another way for women to be oppressed and not given their right to proper health. When President Trump and Congress postulate that everyone—“all Americans”—have a right to freedom, they clearly did not mean those Americans that can get pregnant. As I said birth control can do much more for women’s health than just stop reproduction.
Birth control has been known to alleviate endometriosis, which is tissue that grows outside of the uterus causing very painful cycles. Birth control relieves polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), which is a disease that causes serious hormonal imbalance and ironically enough infertility. Studies show birth control also helps lowers the risk of some terminal cancers for women. When it comes to saving lives through proper medication and treatment, can we really question factoring in religion?
The very basis of most religions is to value life and treat it has such, yet we allow women to suffer further with contradicting rules that do not protect their rights as well.
A friend of mine, Justin, has been married to the same woman for nearly five years now and he couldn’t be more in love than he was the first time they met. However, his wife had a confession to make prior to their marriage, she suffers from PCOS and moderate depression. Because of her PCOS, symptoms for her depression worsened during her cycle each month. Her mental health had taken its toll and her body couldn’t produce enough serotonin to balance out the hormones.
Justin could not bear to see his wife struggle with the pain any longer so they both visited a Gynecologist. Her doctor prescribed birth control assuring Justin and his wife that it would be a better alternative to anti-depressants because not only will it relieve her anxiety, it will efficiently stabilize her hormones relieving all PCOS symptoms. Justin confirms that the birth control has helped his wife’s condition tremendously as it would in many cases like hers.
When asked what this new birth control mandate means to Justin he replied, “I am extremely disappointed in our President to take away a woman’s right to substantial health. Fortunately, in my case, my wife and I can afford birth control pills without coverage, but in many other cases that extra expense could put a family out or lead the woman to suffer. In my opinion, it goes against civil rights.” Justin is one of many that feels the oppression of woman now more so than ever in the Millennial age.
If there is a difference to be made now is the time to appeal any law that risks all our human rights. We cannot condone a matter based on rebuttal heresy, but rather open our minds to the matter of what is right and just of the law despite all odds. We cannot say it is okay to cover the costs with insurance for a man to obtain sexual enhancement drugs but a woman cannot be covered to take care of her menstrual health.
Equality for all is vital to humanity. Let’s start a conversation about human rights together.