Letter to the Editor: Values and this city

Editor:

Regarding the column, (“Sex and this City,” Jan. 27) by Cara Wieser, I hope to clarify several errors in her statements.

Referring to a bill that allows insurers to offer contraceptives, she writes, “Supporting the bill wouldnt affect the church (LDS)-its members don’t receive coverage now, and they wouldn’t if the bill passed.”

Wieser should have clarified that the bill could only affect employees of the church. If the bill passed, then members of the church could obtain birth control through a health-care provider.

This is important, since many LDS families use contraceptives. It should be clarified that the LDS church has no established doctrine on contraceptives. It teaches celibacy before marriage, and sincere planning after marriage.

Second, Wieser refers to legislators keeping contraceptives difficult and costly to obtain. This is simply a scare tactic. Simple research reveals that low-income individuals can get IUDs (a female contraceptive) for the cost of a donation at Planned Parenthood.

At Costco, a box of 44 Trojan condoms costs $10.99. That is just 25 cents per condom. These methods of birth control are neither costly nor difficult to obtain.

Lastly, Wieser claims the legislators are “first and foremost acting as members of a religious organization, not as public servants.” The statement cheapens the election process in which citizens cast their votes for those who will defend their values.

I hope we can reach a point where we can distinguish between the roles of values and religion in government. Opposition to birth control is a value, and so is support of homosexual marriage. Religion in government refers to laws requiring citizens to adhere to certain theological doctrines.

No government body in this case is taking away the right to bear contraceptives. Legislators are fulfilling their roles as public servants by representing the values of their constituency. Wieser’s article would have been more effective had she defined how the bill could be beneficial to the state.

Instead, she agonizes over the plurality of LDS legislators.

Mormons and other conservative residents of the state need not apologize for their plurality, and neither should their elected officials.

Kyle Tait

Senior, Accounting