Depending on your point of view this was good day or a very bad day
If you are gay or are a woman living in the state of Florida, then today was a very bad day for you on many levels. In a Friday media dump the Trump Admiration took aim at the civil rights of the LBGT community and women nationwide with two sweeping moves.
However, if on the other hand, you are a member of the group who supported President Donald Trump’s pledge to his evangelical and other religious supporters then this was your best day in years.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions issued an order that undercuts protections for LGBT people nationwide. Sessions issued a sweeping directive to agencies Friday to do as much as possible to accommodate those who claim their religious freedoms are being violated.
Under the new policy, a claim of a violation of religious freedom would be enough to override concerns for the civil rights of LGBT people and anti-discrimination protections for women and others. The guidelines are so sweeping that experts on religious liberty are calling them a legal powder-keg that could prompt wide-ranging lawsuits against the government.
The Alliance Defending Freedom, a conservative Christian law firm, called it “a great day for religious freedom.” The Human Rights Campaign, a national LGBT-rights group, called the guidelines an “all-out assault” on civil rights and a “sweeping license to discriminate.”
But Florida could feel the change of the law in a very personal way. The Sunshine State is home to four of the nation’s top 20 LBGT metro populations. In a recent Gallup study, Jacksonville had the highest ranking of the Florida metro areas, coming in at No. 16. Miami ranked No. 17 with Orlando and Tampa in a tie for No. 20.
Time to check in on woman’s issue and again the state of Florida will be greatly impacted. President Trump is allowing more employers to opt out of providing no-cost birth control to women by claiming religious or moral objections, issuing new rules Friday that take another step in rolling back the Obama health care law.
The new policy was a long-anticipated revision to Affordable Care Act requirements that most companies cover birth control as preventive care for women, at no additional cost. That Obama-era requirement applies to all FDA-approved methods, including the morning-after pill, which some religious conservatives call an abortion drug, though scientists say it has no effect on women who are already pregnant.
As a result of the ACA, most women no longer pay for contraceptives. Several advocacy groups immediately announced plans to try to block the Trump administration rule.
The Trump administration estimated that some 200 employers who have already voiced objections to the Obama-era policy would qualify for the expanded opt-out and that 120,000 women would be affected.
“Such an exemption is no innovation, but instead, a return to common sense, long-standing federal practice, and peaceful coexistence between church and state,” Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo, the group’s president, said in a joint statement with Archbishop William E. Lori of Baltimore, head of its religious liberty committee.
However, for another view, a very large number of medical groups were instrumental in derailing Republican plans to repeal the Affordable Care Act expressed their dismay.
The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists said the new policy could reverse progress in lowering the nation’s rate of unintended pregnancies.
“HHS leaders under the current administration are focused on turning back the clock on women’s health,” said the organization’s president, Dr. Haywood Brown.
The new rules take effect right away.
The quotes in the story were from ASSOCIATED PRESS.