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Thread: Republican Health Care Plan Could End Insurance Coverage for Abortion

  1. #1
    Beastly Fido Roxxsmom's Avatar
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    Republican Health Care Plan Could End Insurance Coverage for Abortion

    In a nutshell, under their proposed plan, people couldn't use their tax credits to purchase insurance plans that cover abortion. This could compel insurance companies to drop abortion coverage from all their plans, since people purchasing insurance plans will want to use their tax credits. This would also create a problem for liberal states such as CA, which require insurance plans to provide abortion coverage.

    The law, if passed, would all but make it impossible for Californians to use the new tax credits to buy health insurance.

    “States would be faced with this choice: Do we get rid of our abortion coverage requirement, or deny state residents all the tax credits?” said Gretchen Borchelt, the vice president for reproductive rights and health at the National Women’s Law Center. “It’s putting states in a really terrible position.”
    Note that the ACA already offered a compromise measure that allowed individual states to bar plans that provide for abortion via the ACA marketplace, and 25 states have done so. Ten of these states go even further and ban privately purchased insurance plans from covering abortion as well.

    I'm guessing that more court cases will ensue if the GOP health care plan passes in its current form.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/10/h...t&pgtype=Blogs

    This is yet another frustrating example of how the GOP, without overturning Roe, is seeking to make life more difficult for women who do not wish to carry their pregnancies to term. Even early abortions cost hundreds of dollars, which is beyond the means of many women. Add to the difficulty the fact that contraceptives have gotten more expensive in recent years and that the GOP also champions the right of employers and insurers to deny contraceptive coverage.

    I personally don't think access to a service that has such potential impact on a woman's health, life, and well being should be left up to the vagaries of a state's internal politics, but this certainly belies the claim that the GOP is the party of small government and state rights.
    Last edited by Roxxsmom; 03-12-2017 at 07:54 AM.
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    practical experience, FTW MaeZe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roxxsmom View Post
    ...
    This is yet another frustrating example of how the GOP, without overturning Roe, is seeking to make life more difficult for women who do not wish to carry their pregnancies to term.
    And for the most part just blowing dog whistles for a small base of reliable one-issue GOP voters.
    Last edited by MaeZe; 03-12-2017 at 07:53 AM.

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    Beastly Fido Roxxsmom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MaeZe View Post
    And for the most part just blowing dog whistles for a small base of reliable one-issue GOP voters.
    I don't know about that. This appears to be in earnest and something that could have a real effect on the lives of women in the 25 states that do currently allow exchange-purchased plans to cover abortion (not to mention ones like my own state that require it) if it passes in its current form.

    I think we have to consider the possibility that the whole anti choice thing isn't just a strategy to get socially conservative religious voters on board with the GOP. In fact, it's possible that the anti choice position of the protestant right was manufactured by politicians and power-hungry religious leaders to begin with. It's possible that (to put it colloquially), the tale is wagging the dog now and many right-wing politicians have (again, to put it colloquially) begun to drink their own kool aid.

    What I don't know how often this conviction is from a widespread and genuine belief these days that a blastocyst is fully human, or whether it's really an attack on a woman's right to have sex (since we still have a pretty powerful double standard in our culture), or whether it's a more calculated attempt to keep patriarchy intact.

    It likely varies. Though it's interesting to note that abortion was not uniformly opposed by fundamentalist Protestantism until politicians started telling them it should be.
    Last edited by Roxxsmom; 03-12-2017 at 08:57 AM.
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    practical experience, FTW MaeZe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roxxsmom View Post
    I don't know about that. This appears to be in earnest and something that could have a real effect on the lives of women in the 25 states that do currently allow exchange-purchased plans to cover abortion (not to mention ones like my own state that require it) if it passes in its current form.

    I think we have to consider the possibility that the whole anti choice thing isn't just a strategy to get socially conservative religious voters on board with the GOP, but something that many of these GOP politicians really do believe in themselves. What I don't know how often this conviction is from a genuine belief that a blastocyst is fully human, or whether it's really an attack on a woman's right to have sex, or whether it's a more calculated attempt to keep patriarchy intact.

    It likely varies. Though it's interesting to note that abortion was not uniformly opposed by fundamentalist Protestantism until politicians started telling them it should be.
    If it weren't for Karl Rove's play book (court one-issue voters was high on the tactic list), I could believe that. And maybe it's a mix, people like Pence and others certainly sound sincere when they profess their beliefs. I think that CNN op-ed is right on. It's akin to the constant repetition of the mantra that Obamacare was the bane of humanity. Of course it wasn't but that constant drumbeat has an effect.

    I mean no disrespect to people who have taken on the pro-life cause, I get it that to them abortion is murder. What I don't understand is why a law against abortion is the only means they seem to have taken up to prevent abortions. We know it didn't work, there's history that is clear on that. So why not take up the cause of making abortion safe legal and rare? This is where the op-ed you've linked to makes sense to me.
    Televangelist Jerry Falwell spearheaded the reversal of opinion on abortion in the late 1970s, leading his Moral Majority activist group into close political alliance with Catholic organizations against the sexual revolution.

    In contrast to evangelicals, Catholics had mobilized against abortion immediately after Roe v. Wade. Drawing on mid-19th century Church doctrines, organizations like the National Right to Life Committee insisted a right to life exists from the moment of conception.
    I despise Jerry Falwell and what he and his minions have done to split this country apart.

    But I digress and don't want to get started on Falwell. I don't dismiss the patriarchy theories. I recall from decades ago reading (or hearing?) that you could match the employment stats to oppression of women. When jobs were hard to come by, social pressures oppose birth control. It made sense, but it also seems a tad too conspiracy theoryish now, or.... maybe not.


    Bottom line, this has to stop.

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    Nasty Woman AW Moderator regdog's Avatar
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    The continuation of the Republican's war on women. Now they are not even trying to be subtle. It is only a woman's right to have sex to procreate, so long as she is married. After all she knows upon entering a marriage that she is to be a host.So said one Oklahoma politician and the problem is their is a rising tide in this country that is endorsing that ideology.

    Every day more legislation is created that takes another piece of women's autonomy over their own bodies.


    Look at the ruling in the very publicized rape cases we have discussed here. Rapists being given light sentences as not to ruin their futures. The victims being vilified and blamed for drinking. Men are entitled to sex, women are there to be used.


    We all now perfectly well everyone of those 25 states will cover erectile dysfunction drugs and there will be no inquiries whether the men getting those prescriptions are married and faithful to their spouse.
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    Beastly Fido Roxxsmom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MaeZe View Post
    When jobs were hard to come by, social pressures oppose birth control. It made sense, but it also seems a tad too conspiracy theoryish now, or.... maybe not.


    Bottom line, this has to stop.
    It doesn't have to be a conscious association for many people.

    I think there are a lot of men (and some women too) who are uncomfortable with women not needing men. The "deal" for most of our history (in western culture, at least) is that a woman cleaves unto her man and pledges her sexuality, identity, and children to him. In return he provides for her and "protects" her. Men get more money, power and status out of this deal, overall, but the lucky women who marry "good providers" who are also decent human beings get to be taken care of and loved (that there have always been a vast number of unlucky women seems to be forgotten when people talk about the good old days).

    While things are still far from equal, it's now possible for many women, at least, to live life on their own terms--to control when and whether to have children, and to be the sole provider for their kids--or to be equal partners within their marriages (and for marriages to be between two women now as well). It's hard work to be a single mom, but the number of women who have risen admirably to the challenge puts the lie to the long-held notion that the double standard reflects some kind of biological imperative and that women need men.

    So if men can't control women's reproduction or dominate the family units, how can they still be desired and relevant to women? Well, one answer is to be decent, reliable human beings and partners to women, and good fathers to the kids they have together. This works for many men, but it makes others feel rather insecure (especially if they don't like being reliable and treating the women in their lives as partners and not subordinates).
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    It sickens me.

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    Beastly Fido Roxxsmom's Avatar
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    What I don't know is how to bridge this divide, which seems to be one of the most polarizing and divisive of issues these days, and one where Americans are pretty close to evenly divided.

    Regardless of where anti-choice feelings come from, I don't think they're terribly amenable to logic. For that matter, I know that much of my pro-choice stance derives from my own feelings about the importance of bodily autonomy and the right to plan one's life as one chooses. That's not logical either, and I've heard coldly rational counter arguments against anything I could say about why being forced to be pregnant would be a horror for me (and for at least some other women too). But those arguments don't change my feelings.

    The only difference I can see is that my position involves a horror of something being done to my body and life, while the other position involves a horror of what someone else might do with their body (and with the second body growing within it) and life.
    Last edited by Roxxsmom; 03-13-2017 at 07:53 AM.
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    practical experience, FTW tiggs's Avatar
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    Re:anti-choice -- I think it ties in with the current "Natalism" movement.

    It's an unbridgeable divide, IMO.
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    I'm pro-choice but I think insurance should be allowed to choose if it's going to cover abortions. Like many surgeries, most abortions are elective and most insurances don't cover elective surgeries.

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    practical experience, FTW MaeZe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by silverrose77 View Post
    I'm pro-choice but I think insurance should be allowed to choose if it's going to cover abortions. Like many surgeries, most abortions are elective and most insurances don't cover elective surgeries.
    And when it is not elective but politics has interfered with one's medical coverage.....

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    practical experience, FTW MaeZe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tiggs View Post
    Re:anti-choice -- I think it ties in with the current "Natalism" movement.

    It's an unbridgeable divide, IMO.
    The narrative needs to change from outlawing abortion to making abortion rare. Defunding Planned Parenthood because a small fraction of their services include providing abortion fails to put the emphasis on how many abortions they actually prevent.

    As for Natalism, not sure how big that movement is though it has been a theme with the white nationalists for a while.

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    practical experience, FTW tiggs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MaeZe View Post
    The narrative needs to change from outlawing abortion to making abortion rare. Defunding Planned Parenthood because a small fraction of their services include providing abortion fails to put the emphasis on how many abortions they actually prevent.
    I entirely agree. It's totally logical that anyone concerned with abortion should want to minimize the number that occur -- even if their longer term goal was to stop them, altogether.

    That the narrative isn't that, is what make me think that Natalism is tied into all this.
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    Nasty Woman AW Moderator regdog's Avatar
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    The idea of making abortion a rarity is a great idea, but there are two problems with that.

    First, it would mean proper education regarding sexual reproduction and the availability of free or low cost birth control to women and teenage girls, as well as men and teen boys. Too many men believe birth control is the women's responsibility. As one Republican Representative said, "Why should men pay health insurance premiums that cover prenatal care. Men don't get pregnant."

    Second, it isn't really about ending abortion but punishing and controlling women. Unmarried women who have sex are sluts and must be slut shamed. She is a dirty, irresponsible creature who must be punished for spreading her legs.

    Married women have no right to even think about abortion, they agrees upon marriage to become hosts for their husbands. Her body is his to control and use for his sexual needs and reproduction.


    There has not been a political discussion or hearing about any male health procedure being regulated or outlawed, nor has their been one discussion, hearing or legal challenge to the availability of or insurance coverage of erectile dysfunction drugs.
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    All the nopes. lizmonster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by regdog View Post
    First, it would mean proper education regarding sexual reproduction and the availability of free or low cost birth control to women and teenage girls, as well as men and teen boys.
    Vasectomies at age 12, just like a regular vaccination. Problem solved.

    Funny how nobody ever suggests anything like that.
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    All about that action, boss. ElaineA's Avatar
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    I heard just yesterday, last year (when women had excellent access to contraceptives under ACA) the number of abortions was the lowest since Roe. There is a direct correlation, although everyone here is right, that's entirely beside the point.

    By the way, that piece I heard the abortion number in was on NPR, about the push to make BCPs available OTC. (Link to the interview and companion article here) OB/GYNS have been in favor of this for at least 5 years, when they issued a policy statement. Now a new study of outcomes has given more backing to their position. Of course, with Trump's people in charge at the FDA, the likelihood of that happening is low, but someday...
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    practical experience, FTW MaeZe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by regdog View Post
    The idea of making abortion a rarity is a great idea, but there are two problems with that.

    First, it would mean proper education regarding sexual reproduction and the availability of free or low cost birth control to women and teenage girls, as well as men and teen boys. Too many men believe birth control is the women's responsibility. As one Republican Representative said, "Why should men pay health insurance premiums that cover prenatal care. Men don't get pregnant."

    Second, it isn't really about ending abortion but punishing and controlling women. Unmarried women who have sex are sluts and must be slut shamed. She is a dirty, irresponsible creature who must be punished for spreading her legs.

    Married women have no right to even think about abortion, they agrees upon marriage to become hosts for their husbands. Her body is his to control and use for his sexual needs and reproduction.


    There has not been a political discussion or hearing about any male health procedure being regulated or outlawed, nor has their been one discussion, hearing or legal challenge to the availability of or insurance coverage of erectile dysfunction drugs.
    I don't disagree with your post, it's where we are now. We've been losing the spin game for decades.

    Step one, recognize the spin. Step two, expose it for what it is, dishonest incessant repetitive talking points. Step three, redesign the progressive narrative. Step four, hammer away at the redesigned (and still honest) progressive narrative.

    It's not an easy task, especially when the Democrats don't seem to get it like the GOP does. Take for example "the ACA is in a death spiral" talking point. The slogan goes out then gets repeated over and over.

    Turns out the ACA is not in a death spiral, even with Trump telling the IRS not to pursue people who didn't sign up for insurance.

    Jan: Fact check: Obamacare is not in a "death spiral"

    Three days ago: Obamacare Isn’t in a ‘Death Spiral.’ (Its Replacement Probably Won’t Be Either.)

    Are we hearing the news media push back on the death spiral lie? Not nearly enough. Some letters to the editors might help. Are we hearing the Democratic legislators and spokespersons push back? Not in an effective (repetitive, persistent) way. I don't get it, why they don't pick up talking points messages like the GOP does. Perhaps some letters and phone calls are in order.

    Here's another example: Progressives adopted the talking point, "make abortion safe, legal and rare." That message works for the pro-choice crowd. But the 'rare' message is lost on the pro-life crowd. A better message might be, "laws don't stop abortions, birth control does: support Planned Parentlhood."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Roxxsmom View Post
    In fact, it's possible that the anti choice position of the protestant right was manufactured by politicians and power-hungry religious leaders to begin with.
    Notably, Dr. Jerry Falwell and his Moral Majority, during the 1970s. Falwell's eponymous son, president of the amusingly-named Liberty University, established by his father, is now a major advisor to the Pres on education issues. He's a blatantly homophobic Biblical creationist who wants to do away with public education altogether and have all education run through churches.

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  19. #19
    Beastly Fido Roxxsmom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MaeZe View Post
    Step three, redesign the progressive narrative. Step four, hammer away at the redesigned (and still honest) progressive narrative.

    It's not an easy task, especially when the Democrats don't seem to get it like the GOP does.
    This is definitely true. I don't know why the left has been bad at coming up with sound bytes that stick. Is the difference because the causes and issues the left embraces don't lend themselves well to this kind of thing overall, or is it because the temperament of most of the leaders and thinkers on the left is more inclined to longer, more thought-out debate and discussion (which is lost on most people).

    Here's another example: Progressives adopted the talking point, "make abortion safe, legal and rare." That message works for the pro-choice crowd. But the 'rare' message is lost on the pro-life crowd. A better message might be, "laws don't stop abortions, birth control does: support Planned Parentlhood."
    This might be an improvement, though I'm not sure even this would get through. One can make the argument that laws don't prevent murder or rape, after all, and few seriously suggest that these crimes be legalized. It certainly won't matter to those whose motives are more about controlling women than about preventing something they find distasteful at a visceral level. What is interesting is that relatively few anti-choice people want to see women who have abortions imprisoned (even Trump had to walk that one back), which suggests to me that in their hearts of hearts, most people don't think it's really murder. Of course, women do go to prison for having abortions in some countries, and it's happened in the US.

    What I don't know is the numbers: which people fall into which category. Sometimes it feels like there's a pretty unbridgeable gap on this, and on many other, issues. Better talking points wouldn't hurt, though.
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    practical experience, FTW MaeZe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roxxsmom View Post
    ...
    This might be an improvement, though I'm not sure even this would get through. One can make the argument that laws don't prevent murder or rape, after all, and few seriously suggest that these crimes be legalized. It certainly won't matter to those whose motives are more about controlling women than about preventing something they find distasteful at a visceral level. What is interesting is that relatively few anti-choice people want to see women who have abortions imprisoned (even Trump had to walk that one back), which suggests to me that in their hearts of hearts, most people don't think it's really murder. Of course, women do go to prison for having abortions in some countries, and it's happened in the US.

    What I don't know is the numbers: which people fall into which category. Sometimes it feels like there's a pretty unbridgeable gap on this, and on many other, issues. Better talking points wouldn't hurt, though.
    You were asking if the left doesn't over think it?

    Yes, yes they do.

    Laws do prevent crimes, of course they do. But we are talking about abortion here, not crime. That's part of the message, redirect thinking about abortion as a crime and encourage thinking about it in a different framework.

    I don't claim to be the Madison Ave guru or have Frank Luntz' skills. My skills are observation and thinking about how to frame messages differently than I see them framed when they are clearly ineffective promoting my POV and unfortunately effective promoting POVs I find abhorrent.

    By all means, let's brainstorm this. But we have to start changing the narrative.

  21. #21
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin silverrose77's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MaeZe View Post
    And when it is not elective but politics has interfered with one's medical coverage.....
    I don't think the government belongs in healthcare the same way I don't think they belong in employment. When you purchase healthcare, the contract is between you and your insurance carrier. If they don't want to provide elective abortions, they shouldn't be forced too. On the same token, they shouldn't be able to deny a medically necessary abortion the same way they can't deny other medically necessary surgeries. (coming from someone who had the D&C procedure after my daughter was born and STILL had to yell at the insurance company. Note for anyone with BCBS - if they deny you, you have to call back 3 times before they finally clear the claim to be paid. PSA).

  22. #22
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin silverrose77's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MaeZe View Post
    You were asking if the left doesn't over think it?

    .
    Everyone overthinks everything in this day and age. Schools spent too much time making us weigh options and not enough time teaching us to close our eyes and leap.

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    New kid...seven years ago! DancingMaenid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MaeZe View Post
    .
    Here's another example: Progressives adopted the talking point, "make abortion safe, legal and rare." That message works for the pro-choice crowd. But the 'rare' message is lost on the pro-life crowd. A better message might be, "laws don't stop abortions, birth control does: support Planned Parentlhood."
    I definitely agree with that, but I also think there comes a point where we need to drop the spin and say, "You know what? Abortions will always happen and we're okay with that being an option."

    Because the thing is, birth control will never fully remove the need for abortion. It doesn't protect against circumstances where a planned pregnancy has to be terminated due to health reasons or fetal defects, for example, or cases where birth control fails.

    I think at some level, trying to compromise with people who are anti-choice is going to fail, because there are people who believe that abortion is always wrong without exception or who know that Planned Parenthood provides birth control, prenatal care, and other health services but think women should just...magically find somewhere else to go. There are also anti-choice people who are fundamentally against women having sexual agency and the choice to control their reproductive abilities.

    So while I'm certainly on board with reducing the need for abortion by supporting birth control access, and I'm on board with using that as a way to reach people who are uncomfortable with abortion but not extremely anti-choice, I'm also willing to say that I think abortion can be a good choice and that I don't see it as being automatically "worse" than any of the alternatives.
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    practical experience, FTW MaeZe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by silverrose77 View Post
    ...(coming from someone who had the D&C procedure after my daughter was born and STILL had to yell at the insurance company. Note for anyone with BCBS - if they deny you, you have to call back 3 times before they finally clear the claim to be paid. PSA).
    Which suggests that governmental regulations on insurance companies might have a place in society.

  25. #25
    practical experience, FTW MaeZe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DancingMaenid View Post
    I definitely agree with that, but I also think there comes a point where we need to drop the spin and say, "You know what? Abortions will always happen and we're okay with that being an option."

    Because the thing is, birth control will never fully remove the need for abortion. It doesn't protect against circumstances where a planned pregnancy has to be terminated due to health reasons or fetal defects, for example, or cases where birth control fails.

    I think at some level, trying to compromise with people who are anti-choice is going to fail, because there are people who believe that abortion is always wrong without exception or who know that Planned Parenthood provides birth control, prenatal care, and other health services but think women should just...magically find somewhere else to go. There are also anti-choice people who are fundamentally against women having sexual agency and the choice to control their reproductive abilities.

    So while I'm certainly on board with reducing the need for abortion by supporting birth control access, and I'm on board with using that as a way to reach people who are uncomfortable with abortion but not extremely anti-choice, I'm also willing to say that I think abortion can be a good choice and that I don't see it as being automatically "worse" than any of the alternatives.
    Reframing one's position is not spin, nor is it compromise.

    You might find some of George Lakoff's work on framing worth a read.

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