As Slate's Matt Yglesias points out, conservatives are already mobilizing to get people to opt out of the Affordable Care Act (dubbed "ObamaCare"). That's because the success of the health care exchanges hinges on getting a lot of young healthy people into the marketplace. As such, one of the prime targets for the anti-Affordable Care Act groups, including Generation Opportunity, which is funded by the Republican financiers Koch Brothers, are young women.
They have this super-creepy ad that shows a woman coming into her doctor's office for a routine gynecological exam. The doctor says, with disdain, "I see you chose to sign up for ObamaCare." The patient replies, "Yeah, it's actually my first time here." As the young women dons a gown and shimmies down to the end of the exam table, the doctor exits the room and a clown-like (and we all know clowns are the scariest creatures, ever!) appears in her place. "Don't let the government play doctor. Opt out of ObamaCare," the ad concludes.
Hopefully most people watching this ad will smell its stink and realize a pap smear—regardless of what type of insurance you're covered by—is relatively the same (uncomfortable, albeit clown-free) process. Signing up for the Health Insurance Marketplace during the open enrollment period, which runs from Oct 1 to March 31, will not prompt a creepy Uncle Sam to perform your medical exam. It will, however, provide the uninsured with access to important gynecological healthcare.
Sadly, messages spreading this harmful misinformation are only going to get more common as the exchanges open for business next month. Generation Opportunity is even planning a college tour this fall to persuade co-eds that it's better to go without insurance than sign-up for affordable health coverage. Of course, the exact opposite is true. If the woman in the ad above really was entering a women's health clinic for the first time, her ability to finally get an exam so important—especially for sexually active college students—that doctors recommend getting them once a year, is a huge victory—and shows why we should absolutely let the government "play doctor".
(For more information about how you can sign-up for insurance under the Affordable Care Act, visit: http://www.getcoveredamerica.org.)