The Catholic Church v. Obama

The Catholic Church v. Obama

obama-vs-catholicsLast Thursday, President Obama decided that he couldn’t handle the political heat from his attack on Freedom of Religion and did his best to compromise with the Catholic Church over the health care mandate.  Unfortunately, his attempt at compromise wasn’t good enough and the Catholic Church has not relented, although the Church is thanking the President for opening a dialogue.  It is my opinion that President Obama should be forced to completely cave on the issue and the Catholic Church as well as all other religions should unite to achieve this end.

This column has already written about this controversy twice.  The first was my article:  Obama Administration Attacks Freedom of Religion.  The second was by my partner, Kevin Rush:  Barack Obama’s Contraceptive Mandate Violates Multiple Constitutional Rights.

This whole affair started with the passage of the Affordable Health Care Act in 2009.  Apparently, the now immortal words of former Speaker and still idiot Nancy Pelosi, “we have to pass the bill to know what’s in it,” have proven themselves true again.  Buried deep in the bill is a mandate that all providers of health insurance must make sure the policy provides for contraception and abortion free of charge to the insured.  Unfortunately for the Obama Administration and his Department of Health and Human Services, there is no religious exemption for these two mandates.  For those of you that have been living with your head in the sand for most of your life, the Catholic Church and many other Christian religions have a fundamental problem with both contraception and abortion.  In fact, to practicing Catholics both are forbidden.

That doesn’t mean that all Catholics follow the dogma of their religion.  In fact, a recent poll shows that 58% of Catholics practice contraception.  Of course, the pro-Obama lobby on this issue has decided to use this poll as evidence that the Obama Administration should not back down.  But, that is missing the point entirely.  The issue here is plain and simple, “Can the government mandate what a religious organization can or cannot do, especially, when the religion’s dogma specifically says otherwise?”  Whether some members of the Catholic Church are imperfect and ignore their dogma is irrelevant.

Again, a little education is in order.  The First Amendment to our Constitution states, whether liberals want to accept it or not; “Congress shall make no law respecting the establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof . . . .”  By mandating that the Catholic Church offer its employees health insurance that includes Contraception and Abortion, Congress has clearly violated this portion of the Constitution.  It is interesting to note that liberals and the ACLU throw this Amendment out whenever they want to use it such as to eliminate school prayer and/or to allow atheists to do whatever they want to undermine the Judeo/Christian background of this country.  It also should be noted that this is another mandate that makes the Affordable Health Care Act unconstitutional.

President Obama’s compromise last week, if one wants to call it that, is just not good enough as the Catholic bishops are still arguing.  Forcing insurance companies to offer contraception and abortion coverage free of charge to the Church’s employees and to thereby not charge the Catholic Church directly is ridiculous.  You are still forcing the Catholic Church to offer it whether they are paying for it not.  In fact, they actually will be paying for it regardless.  The charges will just be indirect instead of direct as the insurance companies are not going to cut into their profit margins in order to allow the Obama Administration to save face on this issue.

Archbishop Jose GomezArchbishop Jose Gomez of the diocese of California states in quite well in his February 9, 2012 letter:

“AsI have said, the issues at stake go far beyond the morality of contraception.  This government mandate threatens the basic character of our society and puts ever American’s freedom at risk.  America was founded to be a diverse society with many layers of institutions and affiliations. . . . In the founders’ vision of civil society, churches and religious agencies held a special place.  They believed religion was essential for democracy to flourish because religion instills the values and virtues people need for self-government.  That’s why the First Amendment protects churches and individuals from the government meddling in what they believe, or in how they express and live out those beliefs.  That’s also why the government has always felt comfortable providing funding for Church charities and ministries that serve the common good of all Americans.”

The remainder of Archbishop Gomez’s article goes on to state that this is just one step towards government controlling our lives completely.  He eventually writes:  “This new mandate moves us closer to what Pope Benedict XVI warned against in his first encyclical, Deus Caritas Est (“God is Love”):  “The state which would provide everything, absorbing everything into itself . . a state which regulates and controls everything.””

And, that is exactly what is at stake here.  As Archbishop Gomez says this is not just about morality and the Freedom of Religion, this is about the state trying to control our lives.  It is another battle in the war against the far left’s attempt to turn the United States into a socialist or dare I say it communist country.  And, for that reason alone no one should back down this time.

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12 Responses to "The Catholic Church v. Obama"

  1. >>It is my opinion that President Obama should be forced to completely cave on the issue and the Catholic Church as well as all other religions should unite to achieve this end.

    Then you’re an idiot. Why would you be rooting for religions against the U.S., which was founded on a principle of separation FROM the tyranny of religion? Why not move to a theocracy if you want to be under religious rule that much?

    He already relented and said that people don’t have to get their damn birth control from the company itself if it’s a religious organization. Everybody freakin’ wins! What the hell more do you people want?

    Christ!

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    1. you are a certifiable nut. Did you even read the article. And, by the way, who are “you people?” Sounds to me like some level of stereotyping.

      It’s very simple and all religions seem to be uniting with the Catholic Church. This is a clear violation of the Freedom of Religion.

      Oh, and by the way, I have supported the Freedom of Religion of all religions, including muslim and atheist. Have you? Or, are you like most liberals, you only follow the Bill of Rights when it suits your ultimate goal?

      Reply
  2. >>you are a certifiable nut. Did you even read the article.

    Yes. And as par for the course for this site, you don’t know what you’re talking about. Basically whenever something happens that isn’t 100% in your favor, you cry and scream and whine that your rights are being trampled. Once you can actually explain how allowing an employee of a Catholic-run institution to have their birth control covered by their health insurance is impinging on freedom of religion, THEN you can whine. Till then, not so much.

    >>And, by the way, who are “you people?” Sounds to me like some level of stereotyping.

    “You people” who write for this site and your ilk, which is to say, you reactionary Tea Partying chowderheads who gleefully regurgitate anything Sean Hannity tells you as the gospel. It’s not stereotyping. You folks are legion.

    >>It’s very simple and all religions seem to be uniting with the Catholic Church. This is a clear violation of the Freedom of Religion.

    Uh, no. Do you even know the wording of the amendment with regard to freedom of religion? Can you type it right here without looking? It’s ONE SIMPLE SENTENCE. This I gotta see.

    >>Oh, and by the way, I have supported the Freedom of Religion of all religions, including muslim and atheist.

    Wowie! Good for you! Even muslim and atheist? You’re okay with that? So you don’t think they should be jailed for it? That. Is. AWESOME. Gold star for you!

    >>Have you?

    Have I been supportive of the notion of Freedom of Religion, which says that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…”? Yes.

    Very different thing from saying that religions should be able to dictate the rules about what should be covered in the health insurance by the companies they own. Dontcha think?

    >>Or, are you like most liberals, you only follow the Bill of Rights when it suits your ultimate goal?

    Since YOU are the one saying that you think the President should cave to the Catholic Church, it’s really YOU whose patriotism we should be concerned about. Again, I’ll ask: If you think religion should be running things, why not move to a theocracy. This here is called “AMERICA.” Separation of church and state, and all that.

    Try reading the Constitution. It’s filled with all sorts of useful nuggets!

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  3. You are right, Frank, and Spaceghost and a lot of others don’t get it. Most people don’t understand that this issue is not about birth control. It is about religious freedom. It is about the first amendment. It is about the government forcing a religious organization to provide something that is contrary to their faith.
    The catholic church is not preventing any of their employees from using birth control under ANY penalty; such as, you will be fired if we catch you using birth control. You have a CHOICE to do what you want. In the same vein, The catholic church, under the first amendment, should be under no obligation to provide something that goes against their teachings.
    It saddens and frustrates me when I read that a majority, including Catholics, are with the Obama administration on this mandate. Evidently, they haven’t thought this through. It seems that because they don’t like the churches teaching on abortion and birth control they hope that, through the government, this will change or shut down the church’s voice. They don’t see that even though the church teaches this, they are not FORCING you to follow it. But they want to weaken the church and religion through FORCE. This is against the 1st amendment.
    If the church fires someone, catholic or not, because they sought out birth control on their own, I will be the first standing up for their rights to make their own choice.
    And to Spaceghost: So you think Muslims and Atheists should be jailed? For What? This is NOT about Theocracy. This IS about the separation of Church and State.
    Ron Paul 2012

    Reply
    1. >>Most people don’t understand that this issue is not about birth control. It is about religious freedom. It is about the first amendment.

      Linda, since Frank was stumped, I’ll put it over to you. Right here is the ENTIRETY of what the 1st amendment says about religion:

      “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;”

      Seriously, that’s it. If you care to explain to me how enabling employees of religion-owned institutions to have their birth control covered by their health plan either establishes a religion or prohibits the free exercise of religion, have at it. I’ll be right here.

      >>The catholic church, under the first amendment, should be under no obligation to provide something that goes against their teachings.

      They weren’t even BEFORE the compromise, but they sure as hell aren’t AFTER the compromise. The Catholic Church isn’t being obligated to provide anybody with anything that goes against their teachings, but even if they were…

      Let’s suppose that there were a religion that was against health care altogether. (Hm, you know what? THERE IS.) And let’s suppose that they owned an institution such as a hospital or a university. So by your logic, none of the employees of said hospital or university should have to be provided with health coverage, regardless of THEIR religion, merely because health care is against the teachings of the religion that owns it. Seem fair?

      Okay, then let’s further suppose that you worked at a company for 20 years, that was then BOUGHT OUT by such a religion. By your logic, the company would now be entirely within its rights to take away the health coverage of you and all the other employees. Again: Seem fair? Answer with a straight face please.

      >>And to Spaceghost: So you think Muslims and Atheists should be jailed? For What? This is NOT about Theocracy. This IS about the separation of Church and State.

      Oh, I get it. You’re an idiot. I was being SARCASTIC in response to Frank’s bragging that he supports Freedom of Religion. Meaning that if you DON’T support Freedom of Religion, that means you think there should be laws against certain religions (or atheism), i.e., people should be jailed for such practices. Meaning it’s really not all that much to brag about, ya know?

      >>But they want to weaken the church and religion through FORCE. This is against the 1st amendment.

      Please, if you take nothing else away from this page, read that single sentence excerpt from the 1st amendment, commit it to memory, and do your best to comprehend it. That way, you’ll never get it so completely wrong again.

      You’re welcome.

      Reply
  4. Well put Frank. I also find it fascinating that rather than intelligently dialogue, certain individuals prefer to demean, insult and degrade when they disagree on an issue whether they be conservative or liberal. But the most frightening comment made by Spaceghost was “Why would you be rooting for religions against the U.S.?” That statement implies that morality is best determined by government and not religion. Unfortunately in many cases where governments ban or distort religions to suit their policies, greater evils arise. Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia are prime examples. And yes Spaceghost, religions have also committed horrors because whether it be totalitaran governments or totalitarian religions behind it all is man – samll, petty, evil man. I can’t help but believe the founders of our nation understood this because they designed a government of checks and balances to prevent one man or group of people from gaining power to the detriment of people. But the founders also felt it critical for our system of government to allow people to worship their faith of choice without the intrusion of government.

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  5. >>Spaceghost was “Why would you be rooting for religions against the U.S.?” That statement implies that morality is best determined by government and not religion.

    Uh, no, it doesn’t. It implies that this country is run by a secular government and not a religion, so to be rooting for a religion to over-power a decision by the government is to really miss the point of the whole thing. How you say…”Duh?”

    >>But the founders also felt it critical for our system of government to allow people to worship their faith of choice without the intrusion of government.

    Which I STILL have yet to hear how having religion-owned institutions’ health coverage include birth control for their employees infringes upon. I mean, seriously, show me one example of how a Catholic will be less able to practice Catholicism as a result of Catholic hospitals’ and schools’ employee health coverage including birth control. Just ONE.

    Or if you can’t do that (and good luck!), alternatively you can show me how this is any different from a hypothetical religion that doesn’t believe in minimum wage being exempted from having to pay the employees of its institutions minimum wage.

    You understand that “freedom of religion” doesn’t mean that religions are free to do whatever the hell they want and are exempt from any laws they want to be exempt from, right?

    Reply
    1. I find it humorous that people like CondomWearing”Catholic” and “Father” Ted usually resort to mockery of the religion when it comes to their internet names. They have already lost half of the battle and they don’t even know it.

      Reply
  6. Thanks, condom. Naturally this site is too chintzy to have those kind of features. Hell, it doesn’t even spell-check their headlines, or fix them so that an end-quotation mark doesn’t get its own line. But you can find my comments on several of the other columns right now, as pretty much everyone here is equally silly. It’s become sort of a hobby.

    Reply
    1. Indeed, this is a fantastic site and resource. Thank you Spaceghost for the intelligent dialogue, and thank you Frank for setting up a space where we can see how ridiculous your arguments appear. Bookmarked (btw – I’m an atheist liberal-ish European male, if that helps with any future replies). Toodle Pip!

      Reply
  7. Incidentally, the most entertaining conversation right now is probably on Michael Fell’s thread about the “Progressive War on Christianity”, wherein the author is holding up a blatantly anti-abortion website as a greater source of credibility and non-bias than Factcheck.org. It’s all kinds of special.

    Reply

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