Political Flavors

Why “Condoms Are Cheaper” Doesn’t Make Sense

Posted in Editorials on March 2nd, 2012

Craig Bannister and other conservatives who have seen their “Religious Liberty” argument about why health insurance companies should not be mandated to cover contraception fail are turning to an argument that degrades all sexually active women. But at the heart of it is that “condoms are cheaper.”

This is a very strange argument to make on the surface. Women shouldn’t demand that their insurance cover the birth control, even though it’s a woman-controlled method with many secondary health benefits because another, cheaper, male controlled method is less expensive. When you really compare prices, if that was the only thing that mattered when choosing a form of contraception, most women be using diaphragms – because they would be even less costly in the long run. There’s nothing wrong with diaphragms, or condoms or the pill, of course, but is ludicrous to say that everyone should just use the cheapest method because it’s cheapest. Who would support an amendment stating that medicare and medicaid could only supply generic drugs?

People must be able to choose the contraceptive method that is the easiest to use and most comfortable for their lifestyle – because that method is the one they will most often use correctly and consistently – the key to preventing unplanned pregnancy. No method – not even abstinence – works if you don’t use it every time.

That’s is irrelevant to the GOP, however. The needs of individual women, and individual poor women at that are unimportant to them. This idea that women are not a monolith does not occur to them, which is why this argument seems clever to them and also why they ask mind numbingly stupid questions like “What Are Women For?

So as the argument gets even uglier, it’s important to remember that we are arguing with people who have no respect for women’s autonomy or individuality. And that’s misogyny.

2 Responses to “Why “Condoms Are Cheaper” Doesn’t Make Sense”

  1. Sheri Says:

    I think that the debate should not just be about why health insurance companies don’t cover the pill, but why they don’t cover condoms too!!
    I believe there are actually many more positive things about condoms than the pill. Personally, I really dislike the pill and think that even though it is a “woman controlled” method of contraception, I find it wrong that women are asked to manipulate their hormones to prevent pregnancy. Yes there are medical benefits to the pill, but there are also risks. And the pill does not prevent STDs. So yes, a man has to put on a condom for it to work, but to say that is not a “woman controlled” method is just wrong. Can’t a woman can decide if she is going to have sex with a man who refuses to wear a condom. If she doesn’t have a choice, that is called rape, and the pill will protect you from pregnancy, but not protect you from any STDs the rapist may have. So if health insurance companies are going to cover the pill, they should cover ALL forms of birth control as well.

  2. MissCherryPi Says:

    I agree that they should be covered. Right now the rule making process is still going on, so that could happen. The regulations are kind of unclear right now – but I think that you could get them covered with a prescription. If a person has a Health Savings Account, they are covered, and lots of places have them available for free, like Planned Parenthood, and even the city of New York!

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