Domestic partner benefits are fair

Posted: Monday, November 24, 2003

Recently our city decided to extend health benefits to "domestic partners." This move created quite a stir. Many have claimed this is immoral, while others claim it is a waste of their "taxpayers" money. Truth be told, it is neither. These individuals have a right to their opinion, but that is all it is, their opinion.

In my opinion, I don't think I should be paying additional costs in insurance premiums to help offset the increasing cost of prescribed medication. I am not taking pills. Why should I pay for it? I shouldn't have to pay the costs associated with heart disease, smoking, drug addiction, prenatal health care ... the list goes on. But I do. Why? So that I can maintain affordable coverage for myself and my family. Some day I may need some of the services that I currently do not require. Because of this, I gladly pay the costs involved; I want to provide for the security and protection of myself and my loved ones.

In light of this, how can I, or anyone else, dictate to a gainfully and lawfully employed city employee whether they can or cannot apply for benefits for their loved ones in their own homes?

Whining about the "morality" of this situation is absolutely oxymoronic. Wasn't it Christ that said "love one another" and "judge not lest ye be judged?" Where is the morality in condemning someone for having different beliefs?

This new city policy does not force anyone to be immoral. It does not break family values. It is not preventing any current traditional family from continuing in their time-honored beliefs. It is merely allowing city employees who do not share such beliefs to enjoy the same benefits all other city employees enjoy.

The City and Borough is not a Christian church. It is not religiously affiliated in any way. Save your self-righteous opinions for your own church meetings and allow those who don't believe what you believe to live in peace, much as they have done for you.

I applaud the city for its sense of fairness and equal compensation.

Patrick McGonegal

Juneau



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