Trump Administration Set To Defend Birth Control Rules That Pit Religion Against Women’s Health

By Jordan Smith

ALICIA BAKER GREW up in a deeply religious family. Her parents were leaders in their congregation. They took Baker and her sister on mission trips and instilled in them the importance of faith in action, a principle around which Baker has organized her life. She went to Christian schools and attended seminary, where she received her master’s degree. In 2015, she moved from California to Indianapolis to take a job with a church-affiliated nonprofit. And it wasn’t long afterward that she met Josh; the two fell in love and decided they should marry.

In anticipation of their nuptials, Baker, 28, knew she needed to be on birth control. The couple plans to have children, she says, but they’re not quite ready to take that step. Baker is still adjusting to life in the Midwest, the couple just bought their first house, and she still has graduate school loans to pay off. “We’re so excited to have kids one day,” she told The Intercept. “But right now it would be irresponsible for us to try to pursue that.”

Baker had been on birth control pills once for medical reasons, but the hormones had caused her problems. So when she was ready to start birth control as a means of family planning, she decided she should go with the copper intrauterine device, one of the most effective forms of long-acting reversible birth control on the market and the only one that does not use hormones. The IUD she chose is a small T-shaped piece of soft plastic wrapped with copper, which is toxic to sperm and thus prevents fertilization. “It looked like the best fit for me,” Baker said.

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