Obama Administration Opposes Religious Freedom

The Department of Human of Health and Human Services came out with a statement today, January 20, 2012, regarding a decision for which Obama is ultimately, and should be held responsible, which requires employers to include contraception in their health insurance plans, removing the exemption for organizations opposed to contraception on account of religious convictions. Instead, they are to be allowed an extra year before they are forced to include contraception in their plans — until August 1, 2013, instead of just till August 1, 2012.

It is said that "This decision was made after very careful consideration, including the important concerns some have raised about religious liberty. I believe this proposal strikes the appropriate balance between respecting religious freedom and increasing access to important preventive services." This looks like a case of extreme mental reservation. It seems probable that Obama did not want his opposition to religious freedom to have all its consequences this year, because he knew he would then not be re-elected, and is hoping that the decision and postponement of enforcement will please the left, without alienating Catholics, other Christians and believers all too much.

Bishop Timothy Dolan, the president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic bishops, expressed his and the U.S. bishops' opposition to the mandate. "The Obama administration has now drawn an unprecedented line in the sand," he stated. "The Catholic bishops are committed to working with our fellow Americans to reform the law and change this unjust regulation."

I don't know what the bishops will be seeking, but I wonder whether it might be most prudent not to seek to have the unjust decision repealed immediately, but to deal with it in such as to see to it that the issue ensures that Obama is not re-elected, and that it is repealed by the next president (or recognized by the supreme court as gravely contrary to the first amendment).

2 thoughts on “Obama Administration Opposes Religious Freedom”

  1. First, having the option of using contraception in an medical insurance policy is not the same as using it. Having said this, you must know that a super-majority of American Catholics use contraception and do not consider it evil but responsible.
    Second, if Obama were not to be re-elected, greater evil would be visited upon the American people than if a Republican were elected (sic). Richard McCormick SJ writes,
    "the rule of Christian reason, if we are governed by the ordo bonorum, is to choose the lesser evil. This general statement is, it would seem beyond debate; for the only alternative is that in conflict situations we should choose the greater evil, which is patently absurd." (Ambiguity in Moral Choice, p. 76)
    As an American Catholic, I would rather have the option of contraception in my health policy, to which non-Catholics are presumably members, than the lies, poverty, despair, and class-warfare that would continue to exist under a far-right Republican administration.

    1. The issue is not whether using contraception is right or wrong. What is at issue is the fact that many people and organizations are opposed in conscience to contraception, and that Obama would attempt to force people to violate their conscience, a manifest attack on religious freedom, and a breaking of his promises to uphold such judgments of conscious in health care, and to support religious concerns and liberty.

      You speak of "lies, poverty, despair, and class-warfare". Aside from despair, which I'm not sure fundamentally altered much long-term one way or the other with Obama, these problems seem all to have increased with Obama: according to data of the U.S. Census Bureau, poverty has climbed since Obama took office (one may argue that this was due to economic changes for which he was unresponsible, but the question remains, is there any real evidence that his policies tend toward decreasing poverty?); Obama has deceived people on many major issues, including precisely his promise to support religious liberty in general and conscious protections in particular; his rhetoric and polemic tends to instigate class-warfare of rich against poor.

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