From RH Reality Check: http://www.rhrealitycheck.org/article/2012/11/18/ohio-is-latest-battlefield-in-war-on-contraception
by Amanda Marcotte, RH Reality Check
November 18, 2012
This year’s UN Population Fund’s annual report reiterates the long-accepted fact that access to contraception is a basic human right, making women’s rights and women’s health at the center of development. The document reflects a growing worldwide understanding that, as bell hooks titled her famous book, feminism is for everybody. When women can control their birth spacing and family size, they and their families have more economic opportunities and can better provide for the children they do have. No duh, right?
Well, unfortunately, the anti-choice movement in the United States presents the biggest obstacle for getting our country to embrace this common sense understanding of the value of contraception. Yes, they are coming for your birth control.
The latest battle in the war on contraception is being fought in Ohio, where the House Health and Aging Committee approved a bill to be sent to the floor that would de-fund Planned Parenthood, as well as other family planning groups that provide affordable contraception and reproductive health care to the women of Ohio. So far, these attempts to de-fund family planning have failed in the courts, though Texas has won a victory in the Fifth Circuit and could very well be successful in dramatically reducing (and perhaps eventually eliminating) funding to clinics that help low-income women afford contraception.
Invariably, these attacks on contraception are rationalized by the politicians mounting them with claims that this is all about abortion, even though the groups in question do not use government funding to provide abortion. One of the reasons that these attacks have failed in court is because the laws usually violate non-discrimination clauses that disallow governments to punish groups for having different views on abortion—which, may I remind you, is legal and ruled a right by the Supreme Court—by taking their funding. But Ohio’s bill goes about it in a different way, by killing the competitive grant process, and instead giving the money to public health departments and federally qualified health centers before non-public family planning clinics, even though the latter are usually far better at dispensing the kind of personalized gynecological care women need to control their fertility.
Because of this, we can see the “pro-life” mask slipping further. Even though the word “abortion” gets tossed around a lot, this bill makes it clear that the biggest sin of Planned Parenthood and other family planning clinics, in anti-choice eyes, is that they help women have better sexual health and control their family sizes. They aren’t even trying to tie this to abortion anymore, but blatantly objecting to a model of providing reproductive health care that’s been proven to work, precisely because they don’t want it to work.
Continue reading at: http://www.rhrealitycheck.org/article/2012/11/18/ohio-is-latest-battlefield-in-war-on-contraception