The "great" state of Arizona is at it again. Hot on the heels of their famously racist "Papers Please" immigration law, state legislators are considering a "Tell me about your Vagina" anti-contraception law that promises to be just as reasonable.
If the new senate bill passes, Arizona women will be forced to share private information about their reproductive health with employers in order to qualify for certain sections of their insurance coverage. The bill essentially gives all businesses the option to exclude contraceptives from company health insurance plans unless women can prove that they are taking them for "legitimate" medical reasons.
Think of it as a mini version of the federal Blunt Amendment that failed miserably in the U.S. Senate last month. The Blunt Amendment died partly due to the political backlash from women, but largely because all thinking people understood that it was a pretty terrible idea.
Enter the Grand Canyon State.
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Unwilling to let any bad idea go to waste, Arizona revived the plan, adding just enough wiggle room to ram it through their backward state legislature.
Supporters of the law, including Governor Jan Brewer who famously wagged her finger in the face of the President of the United States, argue that these sexual disclosures are essential to preserving the religious liberty of Arizona employers.
Translation: Women don't know what's good for them, and employers shouldn't have to subsidize their sluttery.
The legislation appeared in the form of House Bill 2625 (PDF), which was quickly passed by the Arizona state house and moved to the senate where it now awaits an up or down vote.
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The bill stops short of actually placing the state government directly inside your vagina, as was the case with a recent anti-abortion bill in Virginia supported by Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell. Instead, Arizona just wants to hear the dirty details: where your vagina's been hanging out? How it's been feeling lately?
You know, typical first date stuff.
The ACLU has already stepped in and issued a statement on the misogynist bill: "As strongly as the ACLU has protected people's rights to their religious beliefs, express those beliefs and practice those beliefs, we feel the bill goes beyond guaranteeing protections for religious liberties and into allowing an employer to prioritize his religious beliefs over the beliefs, needs, interests of his employees, particularly his female employees."
Fortunately, the inmates running the asylum that is the Arizona government won't get to have the final say on this one. If the legislation passes the state senate, President Obama's Justice Department will still have the authority to come in and tear it to shreds for violating federal law.