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Conscience Magazine

Mean Spirit Unites Attacks on Reproductive Rights

February 19, 2014

The Catholic hierarchy’s entrenched position against abortion is well-known, but others are getting in on the antichoice act. The Pennsylvania General Assembly is so opposed to abortion that it is not possible for a woman using the new Federal Health Exchange to buy a policy that includes coverage for abortion—even with her own money. A mean spirit is at work in preventing women from obtaining insurance coverage for the unknowable, such as an unexpected medical emergency that disrupts a pregnancy.

Last fall, more than 100 professors at the renowned Loyola Marymount University—run by Pope Francis’ order, the Jesuits—successfully petitioned the board of directors to offer abortion coverage in the school’s health insurance plan. It was more than the conservatives could tolerate and the board relented. Nonetheless, the faculty of a Catholic university was brave enough to stand up for the right to comprehensive insurance coverage. But Matt Baker, the chairman of the House Health Committee and a Baptist, has petitioned the Pennsylvania General Assembly to stand for something other than women’s reproductive health needs.

Pennsylvania Religious Coalition for Reproductive Justice
Gwynedd, Penn.