Friday, February 10, 2012
The Founders of our beloved Republic were by and large religious men who acknowledged the role of divine providence in the miracle of their achieving independence in a free land of their own.
But they were also men who had come from a place racked with war and religious bigotry because of the institution of state religions, so they wisely included as one of our primary freedoms the edict that Congress would make no laws respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.
The establishment and free exercise clauses, as they're known, were not intended to 'make a wall between church and state' as Thomas Jefferson's famous letter is frequently misinterpreted, but to keep America's governing classes from making laws elevating one religion over another and making it the official state religion, as the Church of England was.
President Obama's new Health and Human Services diktat requiring Catholic institutions to purchase healthcare for their employees that includes birth control, sterilization and abortion drugs and operations is a huge and egregious violation and dilution of these First Amendment rights. It is little different from requiring Muslim establishments to buy from companies producing pork products and alcohol.
It degrades freedom of practice to freedom to worship, and they are two very different things.
And once again, we see this president bypassing Congress and flouting the Constitution using the mechanisms of the executive order, the regulatory shibboleth and the appointed cabinet officer and czar.
When President Obama first came out with this policy,he expected it would simply be implemented without any fuss, which gives you a clue as to the personality of the man we allowed into the White House.
Another clue to who this president is and how he really views America and its people is that, after seeing the outcry from people of all faiths, he expected them to accept an 'accommodation' giving them the appearance of granting them back some of the rights they already own outright by lying to them that it will be the insurance companies who will be required to provide these products and services 'for free'.
President Obama continues to think that everyone is stupid except him. Catholic institutions will still be mandated to pay insurance premiums under ObamaCare no matter what. If insurance companies are forced to provide birth control, sterilization and abortions as a part of these policies it won't be 'for free' but will simply be rolled into the overall cost of the premiums - which these Catholic institutions will be paying anyway.
What the president is doing is demanding that both insurers and insured play a game of Let's Pretend that the cost of the policies is really higher than it is - because it includes these 'free' items. President Obama simply demands that people on both ends of this legally mandated transaction simply lie about it.
I admit to getting a small amount of malicious amusement out of this, because a lot of the Catholic hierarchy and many Catholics in America largely supported ObamaCare after getting assurances from this President that of course, he wouldn't expect them to have to fund things like abortions. They should have known that a president whose position on abortion has consistently been even more radical the NARAL's would lie to them with a smile. You have to wonder what former congressman Bart Stupak, a Catholic who provided the final votes on ObamaCare thinks of his decision now. He delivered the bloc of anti-abortion Democrats in exchange for a worthless executive order from Obama promising that no federal funds from ObamaCare would go to pay for funding abortions. Just as I wrote back then, the 'Executive order' might as well have been written in disappearing ink.
President Obama's cynical and deceitful 'accommodation' has just one purpose. It is yet another lie designed to give divide Catholics and to give permission to those Catholics who wanted to vote for President Obama anyway a little cover.
Thankfully, most of America's Catholic Bishops seem to understand what an assault this is on their faith and have rejected President Obama's cynical ploy.
It's up to their co-religionists and the Church to remind Catholics who once again take this president at his word of Bart Stupak and all the other untruths used to bring us to this point. If President Obama is re-elected, he will cheerfully trash this accommodation just as he's trashed the others.
The Democrats are composed of various self interest groups, many with interests and issues that are opposed to each other. But the one group no Democrat has ever gone against and survived for very long is the abortion lobby.
The simple reason for that is because abortion on demand is a sacrament for the Left and thus not just a part of President Obama's ideology. It's a vital part of a new secular religious doctrine, a state church, and thus establishment of religion as well as a trashing of free practice not just for Catholics but for all faiths, who will be subordinate to the new Leftist pantheism just as they always have been under all statist regimes. Make no mistake.. that is exactly what President Obama is putting in place, and neutering the First Amendment is an important and necessary step in that process.
This goes far beyond the question of abortion or birth control or the Catholic Church. It sets a precedent for gutting the entire First Amendment if it's successful.
It's the horrendous tip of a hidden iceberg designed to sink our freedoms.