by Nathan A. Cherry, 02/13/2012
Martinsburg, WV – Over the last several days we have been trying to make sure you are well informed on the current battle in Washington, D.C. over the religious freedoms and convictions of millions of Americans. I’m talking about the insurance mandate of the Obama administration demanding every employer, including religious employers, offer contraception, sterilization, and abortifacients to employees. This mandate clearly violates the religious convictions and conscience protections afforded to citizens by the 1st amendment.
In about a week’s time Obama went from refusing to compromise on this issue to honor the Constitutional rights of citizens to deciding – most likely in order to gain favor with voters – that a compromise was in order. (If I had his poll numbers and dreadful popularity numbers I would be desperate to gain favor with people as well.)
The problem with the “compromise” is that it’s not really a comprise that solves the problem. As I wrote in an earlier blog, according to Lifenews.com;
“The revised Obama mandate will make religious groups contract with insurers to offer birth control and the potentially abortion-causing drugs to women at no cost. The revised mandate will have religious employers refer women to their insurance company for coverage that still violates their moral and religious beliefs. Under this plan, every insurance company will be obligated to provide coverage at no cost.”
As anyone with a high school education in business and economics knows there is nothing free in this world, the cost must be accounted for somewhere. So while the Obama administration is assuming we are all stupid enough to believe this is a compromise, we clearly understand that this will only raise premiums on everyone in order to offset the cost of these services. In other words, this “compromise” continues to violate the religious convictions and 1st amendment rights of anyone opposed to offering – or subsidizing – these services in insurance plans.
I’m not the only one that understands this is not a “compromise” we can accept and this is not a fight we can afford to lose. This could be, if unchallenged, just the first step in eliminating the freedoms and liberties we hold sacred. Below is a wide variety of articles from around the country on this issue and the reactions of many of our nation’s top pro-life and pro-family leaders to the so-called “compromise.”
I highly encourage you to take a few moments and scan these articles. They will solidify the urgency of this issue for you and equip you to speak truth in your conversations with others.
“Focus’ Jim Daly Reserving Final Judgment on Obama Contraception Announcement” – Daley made clear that he, and many others are still unsure of how safe our religious convictions and conscience protections truly are. Daley said: “As an unapologetically, unswervingly pro-life organization, we disagree strongly with the Obama administration that free access to drugs that can cause abortions makes women or society healthier or safer. Today’s announcement seems to be an acknowledgement by the White House that it went too far in disregarding the deeply held values, and constitutionally protected conscience rights, of religious organizations and individuals. Still, we are not convinced this tweak to the proposed policy, when analyzed at a level deeper than simple sound bites, truly addresses the religious-liberty concerns that have been raised.”
“Americans United for Life says Obama Administration’s Strained Health Care Policy Pronouncement ‘Turns Roe on its Head’” – Americans United for Life does not support the attempt to force people into participating in Obama’s abortion inducing drug mandate: “It is clear that Americans need Congress to step in to protect their rights of conscience under the law and to end their forced participation in President Obama’s abortion-inducing drug mandate.”
“What Compromise? This Policy Leaves Religious Liberty in Peril and Planned Parenthood Smiling” – Albert Mohler, president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary says that this compromise doesn’t solve the issue for those with a true conscience objection: “What does this resolve? Well, to state the matter bluntly, nothing. At the end of the day, this “compromise” will resolve the issue only for those whose conscience can be resolved by an accounting maneuver.”
“The Catholic Tribe Closes Ranks Against Obama’s Intrusion” – Maggie Gallagher shows the Catholic position on this issue and explains how deeply upset Catholics are with the mandate (though this isn’t just a Catholic issue): “Obama’s decision to use Obamacare to force Catholic hospitals, schools, universities and charities to fund abortion pills, contraception and sterilization constitutes a deep betrayal of his staunch allies…”
“State AGs threaten to sue over birth-control mandate” – At least three states’ attorneys general (so far) have said they would sue the Obama administration in order to see the insurance mandate repealed/overturned: “Not only is the proposed contraceptive coverage mandate for religious employers bad policy, it is unconstitutional…It conflicts with the most basic elements of the freedoms of religion, speech and association, as provided under the First Amendment.”
As you can see, this is not a simple matter that we are willing to ignore. This is a fundamental fight to preserve our religious liberty that we must be willing to engage. If we refuse to engage this issue it will only lead to attempts to further restrict and regulate the freedoms we are Christians and citizens hold dear.
About Nathan Cherry
Nathan Cherry is the chief editor and blogger for the Engage Family Minute blog, the official blog of the FPCWV. He serves also as the Regional Development Coordinator as a liaison to the pastor's of West Virginia. He is a pro-life, pro-traditional marriage, pro-religious freedom conservative. He is also a husband, father, pastor, author, musician, and follower of Jesus Christ.