Hundreds Protest Obama's Birth Control Plan

The rally aimed to show opposition to a plan that would require employers to offer birth control as part of their employees' medical coverage.


Residents protested an Obama-backed plan to force employers to offer birth control to their employees as part of their medical plans.

The rally started at noon Friday at and lasted about an hour. It included speeches -- and one folk guitar performance -- by local activists.

To see a photo gallery, click here.

The crowd gathered to oppose a mandate from the Department of Health and Human Services advocated by President Barack Obama that would require all employers -- even religiously affiliated organizations -- to offer insurance that includes birth control.

"Our land needs saving, dear ones," said Father Josiah Trenham of St. Andrew Orthodox Church in Riverside to hundreds of people crowded around the white gazebo in the park.

The mandate is part of an "evil" plan to subvert Christian society, the priest told the crowd. "A small secular elite have worked to silence (Christians)," he said.

Many in the crowd feared the plan would force employers -- even churches -- to offer abortions to their employees through their health plans.

"I'm Catholic, and I feel attacked by the Obama administration," said George Marquez, a father of six from Moreno Valley. "We've never had a president try to push his agenda on us, on faith -- the constitution clearly states there's a separation between church and state."

Some birth control methods, such as the morning-after pill, are immoral, some said.

"The morning-after pill, that really bothers me," said Cathie Poullath, a mother of 10 from Temecula.

Poullath was born in Iraq to Chaldean Catholic parents. She fled in 1969 after her father was arrested and imprisoned for more than two years because of his religion, she said.

She sees the mandate as a step toward the tyranny she escaped in her youth. "It breaks my heart. I feel like we're going backwards," she said.

Some in the crowd feared their tax money would go to paying for abortions under the new mandate.

"We don't want to be forced to pay for something we don't believe in," said Jennifer Martin, a mother of six from Huntington Beach. "We believe children are children at conception."

The event was organized by the Pro-Life Action League and Citizens for a Pro-Life Society as part of a nation-wide effort to put pressure on the administration to rescind the mandate.

Martha L. Bridges March 24, 2012 at 04:22 PM
This government doesn’t want to get rid of the Catholic Church or any other religious organization. This president and his administration are not anti-religion, but are simply trying to defend Americans from the raging forces of fundamentalist religious groups that would use our laws to force their narrow views down the public’s throats. Astute political observers note that some of these religious groups desire to use our laws to further their own believes. Never has that been made clearer than by the misinformation being floated about this issue of funding birth control. The churches are looking to reinforce their positions and tighten their strangle hold on the American public by introducing laws that control women’s access to healthcare and curtail their rights to choose what they can and can’t do with their own bodies. In short, they are trying to make women second class citizens. Religious groups want to increase the disparities in our current tax code to their advantage, and it is time to consider changes to both old and new laws that give them controls over women and to change the tax codes that provide them with monetary advantages. But few public figures have the courage to confront this issue, and demand that we stop subsidizing ALL religious groups with their long standing tax exemptions. Americans are guaranteed both Freedom of Religion and FREEDOM FROM RELIGION. Why should the taxpayers subsidize any religion with tax exemptions?
LBV Collins March 24, 2012 at 04:40 PM
I wholeheartedly agree, Martha.
Justne March 24, 2012 at 04:49 PM
Again though, there is a big difference between "forcing your will" on someone and just simply refusing to pay for a service the employee can get for a low-cost somewhere else.
watchingthings March 24, 2012 at 05:28 PM
If you cant afford a condom, dont stick it in... Lazy fools
SPB March 24, 2012 at 05:37 PM
@ Justne, I understand the nuances of your position, though I feel the major flaw in your argument is that you can't just end at birth control if religious institutions get to pick and choose what they provide for their employees. Suppose the precedent is set and now employees at Christian Science churches are denied chemotherapy or blood transfusions because their employers do not believe in modern medicine. Its the same argument, yet people will die for it. Heck, even the same thing goes to birth control. It helps a whole lot of people for specific medical issues where the purpose of the pill is used in a context other than family planning. Just as there is nuance in your argument, there is nuance in the uses of birth control. For example, my girlfriend is anemic and requires the pill to regulate her lady time (the most scientific term I know). Without it she gets sick. There are many other conditions out there where the actual birth control aspect is secondary. So if you are denying a very specific medically necessary treatment for people, then you are saying that your disagreement with the morality of the pill outweighs the health needs of some of your fellow Americans. You can't just pick and choose who gets it, so either everyone that works for the catholic church gets access, or people suffer. Now what do you think was more important to Jesus; the sexual practices of others, or ending the suffering of God's children?
T March 24, 2012 at 05:44 PM
The Catholic Church wants to use this as an argument that these employees it doesn't want to cover are employees of the "church". But these employees work for a hospital or school. These two forms of BUSINESS should be treated as such. If a religion operates a fast food place should it be under the same laws for their church? UH NO. That would be a business so treat it as one. If religion wants to do business, other than getting donations from its members, treat that as business not religion or church. Better yet, tax every freaking dollar taken in by EVERY religion. They could then show on a return what they donate back to others as a write off. Have they not noticed that here in California we are forced by state law to but auto insurance or wear a helmet when we ride motorcycles? Heck what about your auto loan company telling you that your auto insurance has to have a deductable no higher than what they say? See that is the cost of doing business and a school or hospital is a BUSINESS. Providing insurance with birth control is part of doing good business. And remember that the insured person is still paying for their own birth control under the insurance not the tax payers.
Tonto March 24, 2012 at 10:10 PM
Well, the Catholics have kicked Oblamer square in the arse and he ain't gonna win this one. This holy quran thumper has messed with the wrong religion :)
David Shisler March 24, 2012 at 10:28 PM
To me its about freedom, freedom to choose. I don't like the Government getting into a churches beliefs and dictating. Whats next, they'll be telling me what a can and can not eat, or have in my refrigerator. The Government is slowly taking our freedoms away, they say for our own good of course. You have freedom of choice, you don't like the churches teaching, don't go there.
Lynn March 24, 2012 at 10:32 PM
Absolutely!! Couldn't agree with you more Tina.
DMA March 25, 2012 at 04:07 AM
Very nicely stated. I hope more folks read your post. You did a good job of outlining the main points. I don't think it's going to change the rabids' minds, but that would have been asking too much anyway.
Winchester Collection March 25, 2012 at 05:34 AM
Birth control serves many purposes. Some woman need it as hormone control and balance. Any ways If you oppose Birth control, do not oppose abortion and if you oppose abortion and Birth control please support welfare. Where do we realy want to stop it. The pullout method doesn't work!!!! get with it people!!!!!!!
Winchester Collection March 25, 2012 at 05:39 AM
You think that everyone is responsible enough when the moment arises. Lets give everyone a choice to be responsible the woman uses the pill and the guy concurrently uses a condom. Double coverage and each party is responsible for his/her security.
Winchester Collection March 25, 2012 at 05:42 AM
how about just skipping Birth control and handing out the Welfare to supoort these families of 13.
Mr. Logical March 25, 2012 at 06:37 AM
I wonder if Michelle knew about his birth control plan before this article was printed?
Mr. Logical March 25, 2012 at 06:41 AM
I'm 100% pro-life, I support birth control and I believe helping people in need through welfare programs is the right thing to do. Debate.
Galactic Cannibal March 25, 2012 at 06:45 PM
China is facing a very serious problem about 40 years from now. Their one child per couple will not balance the need to pay and support their massive aging population ,, as a result of the one child law. Birth control is common sense, but it has logistic negative consequences that need to be understood and managed. As in the CHINA example. Remember the guy who said " Go forth and multiply" back in the age of ignorance, suspicion and poverty...About 2000 years ago. I believe the INDIANS in the Sub-continent still do that ,with their 1.2 billion population. And most certainty the tribal societies in the vast continent of Africa do it. Suggest we all plant trees and reduce egg fertilization to meet the needs to sustain a healthy balance in the age group populations.
watchingthings March 25, 2012 at 10:38 PM
I need my gas bill payed for because I heated my home to 80 for a month... It felt great like an orgasm. I need you to pay for it now because I was dumb. Debate...
John March 26, 2012 at 02:32 AM
Let non-Christians choose to go with alternate plans that allow procedures such as abortions and sterilization. This way Christians are not forced to comply with goverment mandates that go against their beliefs which is also unconstitutional.
John March 26, 2012 at 02:40 AM
Most "poor people" don't pay taxes either. Separation of church and state does not mean that one must be a heathen to be in government, although that's what has happened since Christians were told to stay out of government. Now look at the mess this country is in.
DMA March 26, 2012 at 05:42 AM
John, When were Christians told to stay out of government? There are almost no atheists in Congress (either at the National level or state level.) It's almost a requirement to be Christian to be elected. All other religions are brought up as a possible reason not to vote for someone. Any time there is a candidate who is Jewish, Muslim, Mormon, atheist, even Catholic (though not to the same extreme) the topic is brought up and disected to see whether their beliefs and values are sufficiently in step with their constituents. There have been some statements made here that, while I don't agree with them, I can understand them. I can see that this topic threatens your beliefs, but don't start throwing out arguments that aren't based in any kind of fact at all. They're just inflammatory and ignorant.
John March 26, 2012 at 07:22 AM
To DMA who wrote: " I can see that this topic threatens your beliefs, but don't start throwing out arguments that aren't based in any kind of fact at all. They're just inflammatory and ignorant." Youch. I must have hit a nerve. Now who is calling the kettle black? The truth is that liberals with little or no morals whatsoever have taken over government. Just open your eyes and see that homosexuals from San Francisco and Los Angeles now control Sacramento, ie. SB48 which will indoctrinate our school children on the merits of homosexuality. Ditto with support for abortion, the baby killer. Real Christians do not support such immorality which history shows has destroyed previously great civilizations. Wish it were true that Christians represented us in Sacramento and Washington D.C. but the facts prove otherwise.
LBV Collins March 26, 2012 at 02:05 PM
Hi John. DMA is correct: Politicians frequently must pass the “Christian litmus test” to be elected. Heck, why do you think the ultraconservatives keep claiming that Obama is a Muslim? I also suspect that whomever you’re getting your info from isn’t telling you the truth. To claim that liberals have “little or no morals whatsoever” just simply isn’t true. And to claim that “SB48… will indoctrinate our school children on the merits of homosexuality” shows you haven’t read SB48, which actually states that "Instruction in social sciences shall include the early history of California and a study of the role and contributions of both men and women, Native Americans, African Americans, Mexican Americans, Asian Americans, Pacific Islanders, European Americans, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Americans, persons with disabilities, and members of other ethnic and cultural groups, to the economic, political, and social development of California and the United States of America, with particular emphasis on portraying the role of these groups in contemporary society."
LBV Collins March 26, 2012 at 02:08 PM
It continues... "The state board and any governing board shall not adopt any textbooks or other instructional materials for use in the public schools that contain any matter reflecting adversely upon persons on the basis of race or ethnicity, gender, religion, disability, nationality, sexual orientation..." [1] The purpose of SB48 is to prevent discrimination and bigotry from dictating what goes into our children’s history books. In other words, if a homosexual makes a significant contribution to society, you can’t dismiss their contribution because they happen to be gay… or Black, or Mexican, or female, or Muslim, etc. And why is it that those who call themselves “Real Christians” preach hate and intolerance towards those deemed different, instead of following Jesus’ teachings of love and acceptance? The answer is simple: They’re not *real* Christians… not true followers of Christ’s teachings and philosophy. Let me ask you this: Do you think Jesus Christ would oppose SB48? Do you think he would consider “liberals” immoral because they want to help the less fortunate in our society? And the big question: If Jesus were alive today and living in America, do you think he would consider himself Republican, or Democrat? 1. http://leginfo.ca.gov/pub/11-12/bill/sen/sb_0001-0050/sb_48_bill_20110714_chaptered.html
John March 26, 2012 at 04:11 PM
Unfortunately, LBV Collins is sadly misinformed. First Jesus Christ would of course, be an Independent but he would lean Republican. Why? He would find it offensive that Democrats support homosexual marriage and abortion instead of "good family values" of the G.O.P. It is well-known that Liberals lack the good moral principles taught by Christianity, ie. Christians do not "hate" homosexuals. Christians hate the "sin" of homosexuality. Liberals "spin" the truth to turn facts into lies. Second, Senate Bill 48 will indoctrinate school children as young as kindergarten on gay, lesbian, and transexual accomplishments in history. Why teach history with a focus on sexual orientation? This bill was written by homosexual legislators and supported by liberal legislators. Now every California school district AND private AND home-school child must by law, be exposed to homosexuality. I say let parents deal with this sensitive issue not school bureaucrats.
Stanley March 26, 2012 at 06:58 PM
This was just the far-right using pro-lifers to protest at an anti-Obama rally. And they're hypocrites: if they really are anti-abortion why aren't they protesting outside abortion clinics? There are 3,300 abortions performed each day in the US, or 1.2 million per year.
LBV Collins March 26, 2012 at 07:10 PM
Well, John, I’m not convinced that Christ would be an Independent with Republican leanings. He strikes me as a radical, more likely to sit among the Occupy Wall Street folks protesting how our laws unfairly favor the ultra-wealthy at the expense of 99% of Americans. Would you agree? Regarding Liberals and homosexual marriage: Liberals don’t support it inasmuch as they support the equal rights of all American minorities… and gays are a minority. And as for your obvious homophobia, I have NEVER heard anyone provide a sound, reasonable argument why homosexual behavior is “bad” and how it will destroy our society if we endorse it through legislation. All I EVER hear as an argument is your inane “hate the sin, not the sinner” blather. (Hate the sin, not the sinner... One of the stupidest justifications for hating someone.) Please explain just how your “hate the sin, not the sinner” morality manifests itself in reality. Does it mean you’ll leave gays alone, knowing that God will judge them when they stand before Him? Does it mean that you’ll follow Christ’s teachings and love and embrace them as your brother, regardless of their sin? Or does it mean you’ll take it upon yourself to punish them by passing laws that deny them the rights that you and I enjoy as heterosexuals? BTW: I don’t believe you when you say you don’t hate gays, that you just hate their behavior. Sorry John, I’m not buying it.
LBV Collins March 26, 2012 at 07:17 PM
Regarding SB48: Can you do me a favor and go find some of those “Dr. Seuss Teaches Homosexuality to Kindergarteners” books? I’d like to see your proof of what teachers are required to demonstrate during “Gay Show-and-Tell.” You are obviously ignorant of human sexuality as demonstrated by your statement that SB 48 will “indoctrinate school children as young as kindergarten on gay, lesbian, and transsexual accomplishments in history.” That statement suggests your belief is built on the misunderstanding that homosexuality is a choice. That position, of course, implies that heterosexuality is a choice, too. Well, I don’t know about you, John, but my heterosexual instincts were never a “choice.” I was born a man who finds women sexually desirable... and I have always been this way. If you’re making the argument that homosexuality is a choice (and you are making that argument when you say homosexuality is a sinful choice), then you have to believe that your heterosexuality is a choice, too. So tell me, John: Is your heterosexuality a choice? Are you struggling with sinful homosexual desires? You must be, if you think sexual orientation is a choice. But if, like me, you have never struggled with homosexual desires—if you were born straight—then you can’t make the argument that homosexuality is a sinful choice. The only reasonable conclusion is that your sexuality was no more a choice than the color of your eyes. It’s what God blessed you with.
Winchester Collection March 26, 2012 at 09:14 PM
Thanks for the great example as to what science brings to quality of life!
Winchester Collection March 26, 2012 at 09:20 PM
Reply to Mr Logical; Very congruent ideology.... Great example to live by Thanks!!!!
twg March 27, 2012 at 06:32 AM
I thought I left the religious nuts behind when I moved out of Bakersfield! Apparently not...


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