The Edmond Sun

March 1, 2013

Senate bill potentially denies women’s rights

Mark Lash
Special to The Sun

EDMOND — To the Editor:

Once again, our state Legislature is moving toward passage of another bill that will not stand up to a court challenge because it is contrary to federal law. It also follows the pattern of many of these failed laws in that it attempts to limit the choices women have in our state.

The bill (SB 452) states in part, “Not withstanding any other provision of state or federal law, no employer shall be required to provide or pay for any benefit or service related to abortion or contraception through the provision of health insurance to his or her employees.”

The sponsor of this bill is Clark Jolley who happens to be my state senator. Jolley says that measure is the result of a request from a constituent, Dr. Dominic Pedulla, who is morally against abortion and contraceptives.

A newspaper quotes Dr. Pedulla as saying, “Women are worse off with contraception because it suppresses and disables who they are. Part of their identity is the potential to be a mother.”

Apparently, Jolley agrees with Dr. Pedulla since he is sponsoring this bill.

I do not think it is up to Jolley, Dr. Pedulla, or the state Legislature to deny women access to the full range of available and legal medical services.

Federal law is already clear on this matter and that should be the end of this debate. For our state Legislature to pass yet another law that will be struck down by the courts is ludicrous and a waste of precious resources when there are so many pressing issues that need to be addressed by the Legislature.

If you think that Jolley and the state Legislature should determine the identity of women in our state and restrict their access to legal medical services then say nothing. If, however, you do not think that should be their role then I would encourage you to contact Sen. Jolley at 521-5622 or jolley@oksenate.gov.



Mark Lash

Edmond