The Sandra Fluke brouhaha seems to be dying down; but I would be remiss if I didn’t make two key points about this ridiculous controversy:
First, Sandra Fluke is no fluke. Instead, she is part and parcel of an elaborate left-wing campaign to bait and smear the Right, change the subject, and protect and reelect Obama. And no, this doesn’t mean there is a conspiracy; it simply means there is a strategy.
Contraception, after all, has never been at issue. Americans enjoy free and easy access to contraception; and there is absolutely no one in American politics — including Rick Santorum — who proposes that this change in any way.
What is very much at issue, however — and this is my second point — is religious liberty and individual conscience. That is, will religious institutions (such as the Catholic Church) be forced by the state to prescribe contraception when the longstanding tenants of their faith demand otherwise?
Everything in the American political tradition tells us that the answer to that question is an obvious and resounding no. Our Constitution, after all, expressly protects the free exercise of religion. Problem is the Obama administration disagrees and thus has been trying to force its will upon religious folk.
But rather than debate in good faith, fairly and squarely, the issue of religious liberty, Obama and his minions have decided to create an elaborate sideshow to distract the American people.
Thus we hear about the wholly fictitious “right-wing war on women’s health.” Though in reality, it would be far more accurate to talk of a “left-wing war on religion.”
In any case, do they really think the American people — and American women especially — are that stupid?
Why, apparently they do! And some polling suggests that, as Abraham Lincoln put it, you can, indeed, fool some of the people some of the time. Indeed, according to Politico, a new Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll finds that,
Obama has gained support among white and suburban women. In both groups, the president is up to a 45 percent approval rating from 40 percent in December. Overall among women, approval for the president rose to 54 percent versus 40 percent disapproval. In December, both his overall approval and disapproval among women were 47 percent.
But Lincoln also said that you cannot fool all of the people all of the time. And so, I have got to believe that as women (and men) learn the truth about what Obama is proposing — which is to crush individual conscience and steamroll religious liberty — that they will recoil in anger and refuse to be played for fools. We will see.
UPDATE: Robert Stacy McCain has been covering this issue well, with his characteristic wit, verve and flair. “Since we can’t call Sandra Fluke a ‘slut,’ he asks, “would ‘lying liberal bitch’ be OK?”
Far be it from me to stoop to name-calling as a substitute for argument, but this question is not merely rhetorical. It seems that Sandra Fluke — who is receiving media Martyr of the Month beatification as the Matthew Shepard of ”reproductive rights” — stands accused of makin’ stuff up.
Stacy picks up on a story by the Weekly Standard’s John McCormack, who actually did some real reporting on the cost of contraception. McCormack found that, Fluke to the contrary notwithstanding, birth control pills don’t cost a student $1,000 a year. Instead,
Birth control pills can be purchased for as low as $9 per month at a pharmacy near Georgetown’s campus. According to an employee at the pharmacy in Washington, D.C.’s Target store, the pharmacy sells birth control pills — the generic versions of Ortho Tri-Cyclen and Ortho-Cyclen — for $9 per month.
“That’s the price without insurance,” the Target employee said. Nine dollars is less than the price of two beers at a Georgetown bar.
As Stacy says, “WHOA! … Give that man a Pulitzer Prize for investigative journalism.” Or at least charge the rest of the media with professional malpractice.