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February 09, 2012


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Blogger Brian wrote: "So why should the Obama administration, or anyone else, take seriously the freak-out of religious fundamentalists over its decision to require faith-based organizations which employ members of the general public to cover a standard set of preventive services, including contraception, in their health insurance plans?"

--Because they take it seriously whether we do or not. Religious freedom is a Constitutional right.

To me, most religion is unbelievable. The Pope and Catholic ritual appear absurd, comical, even bizarre. When it comes to religion, I even find myself agreeing with Bill Mahr who I disagree with on the majority other things.

But, I think privately owned faith-based organizations should be able to set the standards and policies they want within their own businesses or management. If you don't want to accept their insurance coverage and views on contraception, don't work for them.

The government shouldn't be meddling in this stuff.Why do people want government controlling every facet of their lives? This is the way tyranny sets in.

I want to be left alone.

tucson, I'm fine with people, or religious organizations, wanting to be left alone. But here's the problem:

Society is interconnected. If a Catholic hospital, college, or whatever accepts taxpayer funding, and has tax-exempt status, and employs people of all sorts of faiths, then it needs to be bound by laws that apply to everybody else.

What a church does privately is, mostly, up to the church. Once it takes taxpayer money though (Medicare, Medicaid, college loans, etc.) it should be bound by laws that apply to everybody else.

Should I be able to reduce my taxes by the amount I don't want to pay for the military budget? Wouldn't it be absurd if every individual could invoke his/her own "conscience clause" and say, "This law doesn't apply to me because it offends my moral sensibilities."

Take a look at this Mother Jones piece. The guy makes some great points on this subject:


I wrote on this today too and said what I'd say here but it'd turn this into a blog http://rainydaythings.blogspot.com/2012/02/social-issues-to-determine-election.html Naturally I agree with you. This is nuts! but it's how it's going in this country right now. Ironic is all I can say.

So ... the lying ass politicians are all for supporting the Catholic position on birth control? But not the Catholic position on executions? Can you say 'hypocrisy'?

Jim, you're right: hopefully the Republicans now will embrace doing away with the death penalty. This post lists some other social issues on the Catholic agenda that the GOP isn't big on.

Blogger Brian wrote: "What a church does privately is, mostly, up to the church. Once it takes taxpayer money though (Medicare, Medicaid, college loans, etc.) it should be bound by laws that apply to everybody else."

--Yep. This is true. You can't accept public money and not expect to play by their rules.

Re: Death Penalty... There are some people that are too dangerous to be kept alive. Hannibal Lecter is a fiction in name only.

Free exercise of one's faith requires the state to maintain its distance and not overtly favor one set of sectarian values over another. Freedom of religion is a coin with two sides: free exercise and separation of church and state. The bonking repugs want to split that coin; which to do so would make a mockery of the provision.

This entire debate is the best argument I can think of for a single payer system.

You go into the Salem Clinic. Your physician is a devout Roman Catholic. You ask her for a prescription for birth control or a morning after pill. Let's say you attend the same church and you are RC. She has to prescribe the contraceptive.

Now, imagine that you work at the University of Portland. You are not RC. Your insurance is provided by your employer, the UofP. You go into (1) Salem clinic, and though you can get the prescription, it is not covered by your insurance, or (2) you go into a clinic run by the Church and they refuse to give you the prescription.

However you slice it, your wish for contraception will be denied or cost you in order to insure some have their concept of the free exercise of religion.

I once wrote that this issue was one side of a two sided coin. Now I think it is the same side of the same coin. Let me explain:

The Church opposes how contraception is paid for. They argue that their faith is being compromised by such a decision. YET: they argue that birth control should be banned as a matter of public policy.

The tenet they see being trampled is the same tenet they choose to impose on the rest of us.

I have no argument with the standards they impose on their communicants; I do when they seek to impose that tenet on me.

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