Birth control control

So, what's missing from this panel of experts who testified before Congress about contraception?
Male religious leaders testify on February 22 before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform
A few women, perhaps?

While a second panel did include two women invited by the Republicans, the atmospherics of inviting only men to the first panel were intriguing, to say the least.

While the Republicans continue to try to frame their attempts to limit contraception as "religious freedom," it seems that it is another instance of politics trumping the common good. In fact, one of my primary reasons for making birth control, abortion and homosexuality private matters is that they are so easily made into political issues, devoid of moral sense, common sense or economic sense.

The Devil, that "divider," must be howling with glee.

I have no problem with citizens being informed by the moral teachings if their particular religious tradition. But when the adherents of one particular strand of a particular tradition attempt to impose their will on the rest of us, it's time to raise our our collective hands and say "No."

There is no religious consensus about the start of human life, neither today nor historically. Extreme conservatives and the extremely careful try to define it as starting at conception. This may be true. But the fact that this definition is based on a theology of the person -- not on scientific data available to everyone -- should make us extremely wary of accepting it.

The Founders, products of the Enlightenment, were mostly allergic to allowing priests and ministers rule in America. They knew what happened when a church had state support. Citizens were taxed to pay the ministers of a sect they did not belong to or believe in. The state's police power was used to prevent members of other sects from preaching or converting. Evangelizers were be harassed, fined and imprisoned.

This is not hypothetical: it occurred in the American colonies prior to the Revolution.

Now, we see the minority party flirting -- in the name of the Founders! -- with a situation that would have raised the hackles of those same Founders.

The creeping insertion of religion into politics is a virus that must be exterminated. We must unconditionally oppose any attempt to make America a theocracy. Why? Because once God's laws become the basis of our democracy, the next question will be, whose God? And whose interpretation
of his laws? And that is the end of civilization.

I would rather be ruled by a moral-minded, common sense atheist than a fundamentalist believer any day.