Roundup: Anti-Choicers and Deceit

Anti-choicers thrive on deceit to further their agenda. A look at crisis pregnancy centers who are forced to tell the truth, and unpacking the myths about health care reform.

Anti-choicers thrive on deceit to further their agenda. First, a look at the crisis pregnancy centers in New York City, who might soon be required to tell the truth about their services. Catholic News Agency reports:

Councilmember Jessica Lappin, primary sponsor of the bill introduced Oct. 12, said crisis pregnancy centers are “anti-choice centers masquerading as health clinics.”

The Manhattan Democrat charges that the centers are not licensed medical facilities and generally do not have a licensed medical staff on site.

“They have staff or volunteers who have an agenda that they are trying to push,” she said.

Lappin’s bill would require centers to disclose whether they provide abortions, contraception or referrals for these procedures and services.

Centers that do not offer such services or have licensed medical personnel on site would be required to post that information at their facilities’ entrances as well as in waiting rooms and in advertisements. The new ordinance would impose fines ranging from $250 to $2,500 for violations.

Lappin charged that many crisis pregnancy centers are “set up purposely across the street from Planned Parenthood or in the same building as those clinics to try and confuse women and draw them in.”

But that’s the crisis pregnancy center business model! Deceive, manipulate, shame. Repeat. How will they react to having to disclose the truth on their front door?

Its president, Chris Slattery, called the proposal an “outrageous attack on the First Amendment rights of law-abiding, helpful resource centers.”

He said that EMC has saved over 38,000 women from abortions in the last 25 years. Because of this, Slattery thought, the New York City Council will “particularly focus its slanderous accusations against us.”

“We serve the abortion-bound clients they want to stop us from reaching.”

Sounds like he’ll keep fighting to save women from themselves.

And second in the lies and mistruths category today, we have the right-wing and anti-choice assertion that the new health care reform law is “the largest expansion of taxpayer-funded abortions in decades.” The Washington Post attempted to clarify, but how did they really do in their response?

In the state-based exchanges that the law creates, people without employer-based coverage will be able to buy private insurance using a combination of their own money and federal subsidies that most will receive based on their income level. Drafters of the law attempted to assuage both sides of the abortion debate through a compromise that ended up pleasing neither.

Insurers are allowed to include abortion coverage in their exchange plans, but everyone who buys such a plan must make two separate premium payments: one covering the bulk of the policy and another, far smaller one, as little as $1 per month, for the plan’s abortion coverage. Any federal subsidies can be applied only to the first payment.

Antiabortion groups complain that the arrangement amounts to little more than an accounting gimmick. Unless plans that accept federally subsidized customers are barred from covering abortion, they say, the government will effectively be using at least some tax dollars to fund abortions.

To reassure them, Obama issued an executive order immediately after the law’s passage affirming his commitment to prevent federal funds from being used to pay for abortions. But the advocates complain that the order merely calls for compliance with the two-payment rule and is an “empty gesture.” Meanwhile, abortion-rights supporters worry that in practice few if any plans on the exchanges will end up offering abortion coverage because insurers will find the two-payment rule cumbersome and consumers will consider it bizarre and objectionable. They also note that the law allows states to prohibit plans on their exchanges from offering abortion coverage, an exception that could affect large numbers of women.

Hmm, it sounds as if the federal government is making every effort to not pay for abortion, yet allow people to not lose the coverage they already have.

Mini-Roundup: Parents are starting to think Glee is a little too racy for their kids.

Oct 20

Oct 19