Picking up the tab for women's health care [Letter]

November 13, 2013

Susan Reimer's column claiming that women should not be charged more than men for insurance because "that's how insurance works" is absurd ("Splitting the health care tab with the guys," Nov. 11). That is not how insurance works. I totaled two cars within a month of each other, and my premiums skyrocketed — as they should have. I don't remember Ms. Reimer ever writing an article making the case that high-risk drivers shouldn't be charged higher premiums "because that's how insurance works." Those people who insist on building houses along the coast who live in areas that are annually pummeled by hurricanes, they get charged more in insurance because of the risk they take. I don't remember Ms. Reimer ever writing an article proclaiming the injustice of their high premiums and offering to pay more so those poor people with their multi-million dollar homes didn't get hit with high premiums because "that's how insurance works." In fact, I live in a pretty nice neighborhood and have a house full of stuff I need to insure, but I doubt Ms. Reimer would offer to lower my insurance premiums by forcing the people with modest houses and little worth to pay more "because that's how insurance works." No, this is just Ms. Reimer's little attempt to salvage something from a health care bill that has been nothing but an abject failure from the get-go.

While I agree there are times when health care costs women are typically forced to bear the burden of, such as abortions, should be split with men. After all, some guy got the woman pregnant and probably skipped out. That's fair. But women do go to the doctor far more than men, and forcing men to pay the same is exactly like forcing the little old lady who has never had an accident to pay the same auto insurance as the guy who routinely wrecks his car. If you're going to insist that men share the costs of all those women who run to the psychiatrist because "they don't know what's wrong, they just don't feel right," then I think it's fair to ask women to share men's bar tabs because that's where we go to get psychiatric help when they're driving us crazy.

Fred Pasek, Frederick

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