Why We Can’t Have Nice Things: The Maternity Care Edition

Verily, there are assholes and they walk among us (boldface mine):

As the health care bill that was to become known as Obamacare was making its way through Congress in 2009, Senator Jon Kyl, Republican of Arizona, sought to block the requirement that health insurers cover a minimum set of health benefits determined by the federal government.

I don’t need maternity care,” said Senator Kyl, who retired from the Senate last year at the age of 70. “Requiring that on my insurance policy is something that I don’t need and will make the policy more expensive.”

One could go on and on about how we all benefit from maternity care for all mothers: it will lower healthcare costs, their children will be healthier, reducing future economic costs, and so on. But really, the only response should be:

What the hell is wrong with you? Who opposes healthy babies? Just how goddamn selfish are you?

(And it’s probably worth noting that Kyl takes the standard conservative ‘pro-life’ position, namely the sanctity of life begins at conception and ends at child birth).

If you prefer a more classy version, there’s Eduardo Porter:

Pregnant women, across the country and anywhere along the income spectrum, will for the first time have guaranteed access to health insurance offering a minimum standard of care that will help keep their babies alive.

Keep babies alive. You have to be one mean son-of-a-bitch to oppose that, especially in the U.S. where are infant mortality rate is disgustingly high for a developed country. Mind you, Kyl was not some crank living on a remote compound. He was an elected Republican official. His views are not a bug, but a feature. Figuratively and literally, he represents conservative thought (such as it is).

And the congregation responds: This is yet another reason why we can’t have nice things.

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8 Responses to Why We Can’t Have Nice Things: The Maternity Care Edition

  1. Renee Ellmers is quite the piece of work too I see.
    http://www.salon.com/2013/10/31/republicans_want_to_make_women_pay_more_for_insurance_again/
    Apparently she thinks that 32 year old single men are incapable of getting any women pregnant, for one thing.

    For another thing, all these people seem to be confused about how insurance works.

    My mother has been driving a car for almost 60 years, and the only accident she ever had was when another car slipped down an icy hill and collided with her car. But she still has to have car insurance.

    And you don’t get a subscription to Playboy then complain that it costs so much because of the nude photos of women when you just want to read the articles. LOL

    The markets in the economy are full of one thing subsidizing another.
    Grocery stores carry cat food, when for reasons I don’t understand, most people don’t actually have pet cats.
    My public library carries books I couldn’t imagine wanting to read.
    Taxes pay to pave roads I’d never have a reason to drive on. (Well, unless you’re in Pennsylvania, where they don’t really bother paving much anymore.)
    My web host offers all kinds of apps & services I have absolutely no reason or desire to use.
    The list goes on & on.

    This argument about maternity coverage is total B.S. clueless nonsense.
    And I’m speaking as a middle-aged woman who’s never been pregnant.

  2. Adriana says:

    Serious question here; why do discussions about maternal health always have to come back to the health of the new babies only?I mean, that’s very important, but it isn’t the whole picture.

    I was listening to an On Point episode on the radio, and a researcher was talking about studies of women from cultures with a tradition of good postpartum care. In this case, it was mostly Latinas, whos’ female relatives would come and take care of them and their homes and families for a few weeks after they gave birth. They were far less likely to have postpartum depression, among other things. The study was a study about the women, not the babies, but the interviewer kept asking if there was any proof that it benefited the children. Aside from the fact that not having a depressed mother will generally benefit the kids, why the fuck isn’t it considered worthwhile for something to only benefit mothers?!

    • YES! That’s such an important point. Thank you for adding this!

      Jared Diamond is one that talks about this sort of thing.

      And I think it shouldn’t go without mentioning that people concerned about mothers “getting back to work” (ie: supporting themselves) should want this sort of thing.
      But it’s like a contradiction, like everything else.
      They’re worried about the unborn babies. They’re maybe worried a little about the babies. But they’re VERY concerned that those mothers get back to work! So one would think they’d be in favour of health care that would help with that!

  3. kaleberg says:

    He may not have needed maternity care, but I’ll bet his mom did. I assume the people making this argument against paying for maternity care were cauldron born.

  4. Newcastle says:

    The stupidity of the statement is that the idiot is not paying for maternity coverage on himself. Insurance rates are determined by the costs of providing coverage and since the costs of labor and delivery for men is ZERO it adds exactly zero to the cost of the coverage. Actuaries are just a wee bit smarter than that.

  5. sophiasusnow says:

    It makes sense that people who chose certain lifestyles should be responsible for the health costs associated with those choices. http://insuranceexchangehq.com/ohio-medicaid-expansion-taking-place/
    The utter dominance of Ivy League graduates as Presidential appointees and kid-gloves treatment of multi-billionaire Wall Street scofflaws who further ruined so many lives of ordinary Americans.

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