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Letters | BIRTH CONTROL: CONSCIENCE AND CONTROVERSY

Brown lauded for defending religious freedom

RE YVONNE Abraham’s Feb. 16 Metro column “Blunt words for Brown’’ : While the polarizing issue of birth control has been the catalyst for a reinvigorated debate over health care reform, the debate is really about freedom of conscience, and our nation’s tradition of not forcing people to violate their faith to satisfy a government mandate.

I applaud Senator Scott Brown for defending religious freedom. The senator’s position is consistent with his support for Christian Science constituents who also have concerns that the law’s mandate runs contrary to what has long worked for them and their families.

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Brown is trying to ensure that the law does not discriminate on the basis of religion. The law’s religious exemptions have the government picking and choosing which faiths will be exempt. I don’t think that’s what the Founders had in mind.

For Christian Scientists, it makes no sense that the spiritual care we rely on is covered by health insurance for members of Congress and is accommodated under the federal tax code, but not under this law. Health care reform was meant to provide insurance that works for all Americans, but instead it discriminates against certain religious faiths.

We’re not asking for special treatment, just fair treatment. What Brown is fighting for is the opportunity to purchase coverage that is consistent with our beliefs.

Katie Martin

Newburyport

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