-- under the thumb of the state. Wesley Smith on Obama's assault on religion:
Even more telling: Despite much screaming from opponents, the Department of Health and Human Services has refused to broaden the religious exemption in the final rule — forcing religiously founded organizations to violate their parent church’s teachings, a frontal assault on the freedom of faiths to operate institutional outreach organizations consistent with their beliefs. If this rule stands, it won’t end there. If Catholic organizations can be compelled by federal diktat to violate their religious tenets, so can other religious organizations in different contexts.Read the rest.
James Capretta on why the Obama administration's slap in the face of religious freedom was inevitable:
The central purpose of Obamacare — and the reason it was and is so strenuously opposed by so many Americans — is to transfer all of the critical decisions about how American health care operates to the federal government. Despite what the president contends, it is a federal takeover. The federal bureaucracy is now in the driver’s seat.Read the whole thing. And if you're so inclined, pray that the bishops remain strong and refuse to be placated by a weak "broadening" if and when that happens.
And, with the federal government now calling all of the shots, it is a foregone conclusion that a decidedly secularist and utilitarian point of view will be pervasive in everything that is done. It is simply beyond the capacity of the modern federal government to even consider arguments questioning the wisdom of governmental policies promoting free and abundant contraception. Indeed, it is an article of faith in the modern bureaucratic context that pushing such “prevention” measures onto the American public is one more step on the long march to a more just and humane society.
This is the environment in which we live. The hard truth is that the federal government cannot be trusted today with these kinds of decisions, and there’s no prospect of that changing anytime soon. That’s a big reason why Obamacare should never have been allowed to pass in the first place. Just the sight of Catholic leaders’ being forced to go begging before federal officials ought to be enough to convince most Americans that handing over so much power over such sensitive matters to the federal government was a terrible, terrible mistake. [. . .]
It is possible that the Obama administration will pull a political stunt later this year and broaden the exemption to curry favor with some gullible voters just before the election. But even if that were to happen, the real lesson of this episode should not be lost on anyone. Obamacare has handed over immense power to a federal government that is essentially hostile to religious sentiments. That’s a very dangerous state of affairs. Job number one must be to reverse course and replace Obamacare with a program more consistent with our Constitution and values.
Related: "Audacity of despair"
Also see Politicaljunkie Mom's "To Hell With Catholics"
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