Americans Don’t Understand What Contraception Mandates Do

A new Pew poll has shown that two-thirds of Americans (including Catholics) believe that all employers should cover contraception.

But five months ago, when asked the question in a different way, 53% of Americans judged the contraception mandate “unfair.” They did not think the government should shut down ministries like the Little Sisters of the Poor for not providing BC.

Crux explains the dichotomy by saying that Americans want to have their cake and eat it too:

“Phrase the debate over the mandates as a yes or no to the desirability of people being able to get birth control, in other words, and the answer in America is basically pre-destined to be “yes.” Phrase it as a yes or no to the Little Sisters being able to do their thing without being hampered by the state, on the other hand, and the answer once again is likely to be “yes.”

There is more to unpack here than just how phrasing can change polling data (although that’s important to know). The polls additionally reveal:

-that there is a widespread “ho-hum-contraception-is-the-norm” view in America…despite the way it has reduced the weight and beauty of sex, and harmed women’s health and emotional lives;

-and widespread ignorance about what these kinds of mandates can do, if enacted.

That is why it is so important for women to speak for themselves–not only about their dissatisfaction with contraception as the new norm, but also about the consequences of government’s involvement with contraception. While most people admire the Little Sisters and other religious nonprofits, they simply don’t know how contraception mandates affect these ministries. I would bet that more and more people could be persuaded to stand with the Little Sisters, if only we would tell them what’s at stake.

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