The Catholic Church and Contraception
It’s clear that Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan of New York does not like the requirement that health care insurance should cover contraception (“Archdiocese Pays for Health Plan That Covers Birth Control,” news article, May 27). It is equally clear that contraceptive coverage can be part of insurance for employees of Catholic institutions with no harm to anyone’s religious liberty.
Cardinal Dolan and his brother bishops argue that the contraceptive requirement impinges on the Catholic hierarchy’s religious freedom. In making their case, however, the bishops insist on the right to impose their religious beliefs on the population at large.
We know that most Catholics disagree with the hierarchy on contraception and that many use it to plan their families. But the bishops are pleading with the courts to be allowed to ride roughshod over everybody’s religious freedom and be given the right to impose their beliefs through judicial diktat.
The courts should instead protect individual rights and real religious liberty. This includes protecting the freedom of employees, no matter where they work, to have access to a similar menu of health care services as others can.
It’s time that the United States bishops stopped their charade of religious-freedom claims and followed their leader, whose diocese has been providing contraceptive coverage to its employees for years.
Executive Vice President
Catholics for Choice
Washington, May 28, 2013
This letter was originally published by the New York Times.