Because it just won't stop. You'd think that the graphic images and language in my last post would have put these issues to bed (pun intended). But no. The inexplicable controversy surrounding birth control and state mandated, yet medically unnecessary, 'transvaginal ultrasounds' (touted as "empowering" women to make better decisions) continues to march forward unabated -- with no end in sight. This time in Arizona. So let's up the ante and get started. The New York Times reports:
"The bill would allow ALL employers with religious and moral objections to birth control to refuse to provide coverage for that purpose through their health plans. Those employers would still have to provide coverage for contraception drugs for other medical reasons but could make women seeking reimbursements explain why they needed it."  [my emphasis] 
In other words, if women are seeking to use birth control to prevent pregnancy, any employer could deny that coverage. Which makes me develop facial tics. If, on the other hand, a woman is on birth control for any other reason (ovarian cancer prevention, PMS relief, clearer skin, etc), she would need to document her case and present it to her employer for possible approval. "Hi Boss, even though I'm in a committed relationship, I've never had a lustful thought in my life. I'm only using the pill to avoid having the emotions of Godzilla five days out of every month. Besides, I'm in sales, and we both know how prospective clients hate zits on adults. Is that ok with you?" Two words: AWK-ward. And humiliating. And it had better be downright unconstitutional. 

But here's the deal -- sans any and all political satire and hyperbole for once, I simply cannot reconcile why a Viagra prescription would ever be covered (and it currently is) for a single/divorced/widowed man without imposing the same exact "moral and religious objections" that women have been penalized (err, "empowered") with. Most religions prohibit masturbation and pre-marital sex, yes? Of course they do. And if anyone claims "medical reasons", I demand an excruciatingly detailed examination -- complete with anal probing, catheters, and psychological testing -- documenting why an unmarried man would ever have any use for an erection based on "moral and religious" grounds. There are none. And the moral outrage should have reached the stratosphere by now.

But things get more complicated when a man is married. Because we then need to make sure that any married man taking Viagra is using it solely for the purposes of procreation. And? Procreating with his own wife. As Rick Santorum reminds us, even for married couples, "contraception is not's a license to do things in the sexual realm that is counter to how things are supposed to be". Many religious institutions subscribe to this view as well. Sorry gentlemen, but Viagra certainly sounds a helluva lot like one of those "slut licenses" until it can be proven that non-lustful motivations are involved. But how?
Remember in grade school when you needed a note from your mom? For like everything? Yeah, kinda like that. Except a married man wouldn't need a note from his mom -- because, well that's kinda creepy -- but a note from his wife would substitute nicely. This isn't about government intrusion into our bedrooms and a blatant violation of privacy, it's all about "empowerment" that enables men to make better decisions by treating them like children: 

Note From Wife for Viagra

The New York Times concludes with:
"The current bill is supported by Catholic bishops and social conservatives as A WAY to promote religious freedom."  [my emphasis] 
Note to Catholic bishops: Not everyone is Catholic. Note to social conservatives: Not everyone is Evangelical. Notes to Catholics and Evangelicals on some conveniently overlooked facts: Jehovah's Witnesses don't believe in blood transfusions, Scientologists vehemently oppose psychiatry, Christian Science rejects medicine in favor of prayer, Shamanism eschews doctors, and -- wait for it --  there are still atheists and agnostics running amok who probably spent their public high school years stuffing Mormons into lockers. So when one "way" to promote religious freedom includes legislating your self-righteous and holier-than-thou "morals" to the exclusion of everyone else not in your congregation, expect many of us to balk. Because there are no words, other than these:  


Side Note:  I recently started my own business and have several full-time positions open. As for health care coverage? No worries, you will be fully covered with only a couple minor exceptions. Remember, none of this is discrimination, it's simply an expression of my religious freedom (as one "way"). You see, personally, I have a moral objection to preventing or treating prostate cancer. I just don't see the benefit since it doesn't affect me in any way. Oh, and circumcision? Not good since I'm a Gentile. So in the event you submit an application, I'd highly recommend finding your foreskin if it's been missing. Otherwise, a written explanation detailing circumcision circumstances that may have been out of your control will suffice. In fact, now that I think of it, I'll take that note from your mom after all. 

Next Up:  Empowering Women Through Chastity Belts: When Bayer Runs Out of Aspirin.

Stay tuned.