What’s Sneaking in Under the Radar?
Boy, Did Bart Stupak Get Duped!
The media has been brimming with reports on the conflict between President Barak Obama and the President of the USCCB (United States Council of Catholic Bishops), Archbishop Cardinal-elect Timothy Dolan. The issue involves recent ObamaCare regulations that threaten first amendment rights of Catholics, and of numerous other religious groups.
- The main players are imposing.
- Coverage is sensational.
- The issues are important:
Freedom of religion
Redefinition of rights and of essentials
The players are imposing
President Obama’s administration announced in August 2011 that the now-mandatory ObamaCare would contain regulations requiring the provision of free birth-control/abortifacient drug services by all employers.
The President of the USCCB, Archbishop Dolan, objected in September 2011, calling the regulation an “unprecedented attack on religious freedom” and urging that it be rescinded. Catholic institutions could not be forced to provide morning-after pills and contraceptives to their employees. This would constitute a violation of conscience. For the first time in history, the USCCB formed an Ad Hoc Committee for Religious Liberty, to respond to six specific attacks on religious freedom in the United States since June 2011.
On October 4th, 2011, President Obama, ignoring the objections of the Catholic Bishops, bragged at a DNC fundraiser about the inclusion of contraception in ObamaCare regulations, quipping “Darn tooting!,” a slang expression for “damn right,” derived from a 1928 Laurel & Hardy silent comedy short, You’re Darn Tootin’.
The President of the USCCB Dolan met with President Obama in November 2011, explaining to Obama the Catholic Church’s objections to the regulation.
On January 20, 2012, it became clear that the Obama administration was not planning to satisfy the Catholic Bishops’ concerns. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced that the regulations would go forward. Catholic hospitals, universities and charitable organizations would have to comply by August 1, 2013. The appeal by Catholic Bishops for a religious exemption was denied.
The USCCB made the next move: mobilizing Catholics to pressure their elected representatives to restore 1st amendment rights to Catholics. An appeal went out February 5th, 2012 to all Catholics in the United States, to fast, to pray and to approach their legislators opposing this violation of religious freedom. Catholic parishes in the U.S. heard letters from their Bishop on February 5th.
The USCCB website summarized the concerns of the Bishops of the United States and suggested courses of action for interested citizens (including non-Catholics) . The site has been swamped with response, often requiring more than one attempt to access the site.
Locally, Madison’s Cathedral Parish’s Rector Monsignor Holmes explained the background for the religious freedom violation. Cllick here for mp3 of Msgr. Holmes’ talk.
Bishop Morlino of Madison appealed to Catholics to act in protection of our religious freedoms – click here for Bishop Morlino’s letter to all Diocese of Madison Catholics.
In response to the USCCB action, the White House published a set of false and misleading claims about the ObamaCare regulation on the White House blog, attempting to deny the Bishops’ claims (Feb 2, 2012).
An example of misleading White House claims:
“No individual will be forced to buy or use contraception.”
However, the truth misrepresented by the White House is that women who have ethical objections to contraception will be forced to pay for contraception use by others through their higher premiums, since contraception is mandated to be free of charge. Even Tylenol does not enjoy this special status.
The USCCB issued a response to the White House blog to set the record straight on Feb 4, 2012, containing clarifications on all White House misleading claims.
This Affects a Lot More Than Just Catholics
Cardinal-elect Dolan is not just representing Catholics (25% of America) in this serious matter; he is representing all religious Americans (80%), as well as all who wish to maintain Judeo-Christian moral values (numerous supporters of Judeo-Christian values are not religious people, but support the common sense embodied by the Ten Commandments).
The Catholic Church is in a unique position to lead this battle, because the Catholic Church has a centralized organization and numerous members. They are uniquely situated to demand justice for religious America (80% of us). Few other religions have the centralized structure to be able to do this.
People of all faiths should join in this call to prayer, fasting and civic action.
The coverage is sensational
- Top U.S. Catholic Bishop: ‘Administration is on Wrong Side of the Constitution Again’ – CNS News 1-23-12
- ObamaCare and Religious Freedom – Wall Street Journal 1-25-12
- Conscience Protection – USCCB website
- Stand Up For Religious Liberty and Rights of Conscience – Madison Catholic Herald 1-26-12
- Obama Plays His Catholic Allies for Fools – Washington Post 1-30-12
- Bishop: Obama Administration is Telling Catholics ‘To Hell With You’ – CNS news 1-30-12
- Catholic Church vs Obama in Election Year Showdown –ABC 1-30-12
- Catholics Hear Anti-Obama Letter in Church – CBS – 1-30-12
- Catholics: Hold Obama Accountable for Conscience Violations -LifeNews.com 1-30-12
- Obama Sandbags the Archbishop – Crisis Magazine –1-31-12
- The First Amendment and ObamaCare – Redstate.com 1-31-12
- Catholic Bishops Reject Obama’s Surrender Terms – Investors.com 2-1-12
- Battle Brews Between Catholic Church and Obama Administration – News9.com 2-1-12
- Pelosi Vows to Stand With Obama Against Catholic Church – CNS news Feb 2, 2012
- Obama Ruling Requires Catholic Institutions to Violate Church Teaching – Washington Post 2-2-12
- Catholic Church’s Unfair Attack Against Obama – Boston Globe Editorial 2-2-12
- President Obama vs the Catholic Church – FoxNews - 2/2/12
- Rubio Introduces Bill to Protect Church Organizations Against Obama’s Mandate – 2-3-12
- USCCB: White House Misrepresents its Own Contraceptive Mandate – 2-4-12
- Will the HHS Contraception Mandate Derail Obama’s Chance of Re-Election? National Catholic Register 2-5-12
- Catholic outcry over Obama administration’s birth control decision could be factor in presidential race – Fox News 2-7-12
- Weekly Standard: ObamaCare vs. the Catholics – NPR 2-7-12
- Memo to Obama: You’ve Got a Problem – CatholicVote.org. 2-7-12
- Military Chaplains Told Not to Read Criticism of Contraceptive Mandate in Mass -Fox News 2-7-12
The issues are important:
Freedom of religion;
The main issue involved here is crucial: Can a government require an individual to act contrary to their conscience?
Could the Obama administration require Jewish organizations to serve pork if the Secretary of Health and Human Services decided that pork was an important part of a healthy diet?
These analogies sound outrageous; but requiring a religious Christian, Muslim, or Jew to provide morning-after pills to others, and thereby to promote both promiscuity and the killing of pre-born human beings, is every bit as outrageous as forcing Jews to serve pork or forcing nuns to wear bikinis.
The next step in this chilling drama would be to require all medical personnel to participate in abortions, regardless of religious belief. Then American doctors and nurses who are religious (80% of them) would be punished by law or would lose their jobs for refusing to participate in abortions, just as Catholic institutions will be penalized or will be closed down if they refuse to provide morning-after pills to employees of Catholic hospitals, schools and charities.
Catholic Charities in Boston have already been forced to end their adoption services because of their inability to place children with gay couples, as required state law.
The First Amendment
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
The government of the United States can make no law compelling Catholic citizens to do what they consider to be immoral. It is hard to imagine how President Obama hoped to get around this.
Yet the White House stated on Jan 31, 2011 that there is “no Constitutional Rights issue” in forcing Catholics to act against their faith. The White House went even further on Feb 6, 2012 , stating that women “deserve” to have the Catholic Church buy them sterilization, contraceptives and abortifacients.
Re-Defining Rights and Essentials
In the rush to cover the primary issue, religious freedom, one additional issue seems to be neglected by the press – it is important to point out that the Obama Administration has embarked on categorizing free birth control/abortion as “medically necessary to ensure women’s health and well-being,” as an essential, and as a “right.” The National Institute of Medicine produced a report July 19, 2012, suggesting the expansion of “clinical preventative services” for women in ObamaCare to include such services.
How on earth did the morning-after pill get promoted to such a degree of indispensability as to be guaranteed to be available and to be free?
Government guarantees few free commodities; most commodities guaranteed by government are intangible and do not involve a product: life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness. They are freedoms to do something, not freedoms that entitle citizens to a product.
In the United States, citizens are not even entitled to basics such as food, shelter or clothing, unless they work for them. Unemployment benefits and old age pensions are not available to those who have not worked. Unemployment benefits also run out after a period of time. The “work” which qualifies a citizen for receiving these “benefits” is quite specific; housewives, for example, cannot collect unemployment. Note also, that unemployment and old age pensions are called “benefits;” they are not called “rights.”
Health plans also do not guarantee patients many essentials. They never cover “over-the-counter” drugs like aspirin or Tylenol, and they require co-pays for essential drugs like insulin, without which some patients would die.
The Morning-After Pill = Essential?
So HOW ON EARTH did the morning-after pill get promoted to the status of something that all must receive FREE, and that Catholics, who disagree with morality of the medication, MUST pay for and must provide the morning-after pill for others? What is the next step, universally available free hemlock, and requiring Churches to dispense it?
One More Danger
In addition to conscience violation, there is another inherent danger in government-guaranteed free tangible commodities like morning after pills for all. The danger lies in paying for the commodities.
Taxing the rich at a rate of 100% (yes, 100%, which would leave them with an income of zero) would not generate enough money to pay our national deficit and our national debt in the United States. See Taxing the Rich. We simply do not have enough rich citizens in the United States to cover all the things the present administration wants to provide. We cannot even pay our present bills, so how can we add morning-after pills to the list of free items/services available to everyone?
Even if we had sufficient wealth to pay for the free items, how would we justify guaranteeing a right to the morning-after pill before we guarantee a right to aspirin, insulin, food, shelter or clothing?
Has the Obama Administration has gone mad?
Is There a Hidden Agenda?
Has the Obama Administration has gone mad?
Or, perhaps, does the Obama Administration have a hidden agenda?
One could speculate whether the Obama Administration floated an obvious violation of the First Amendment in order to obscure the redefinition of rights and essentials. As we all scramble to defend the First Amendment religious rights, Obama has succeeded in sneaking abortion into ObamaCare, and in establishing abortion as a right and as an essential.
“Special” Tactics Being Used?
President Obama, along with numerous other Democrats like Hillary Clinton, has often been accused of being a follower of Saul
Alinsky, a radical activist of the 1960’s who developed tactics for advancing a radical agenda against the wishes of an American majority. Alinsky developed a way to outsmart democracy and to railroad radical agenda in “under the radar. “ The use of intentional scandals for distraction, together with the use of lies and dirty tactics to advance one’s purpose, are all part of the Alinsky tactics that Obama has been accused of using. These tactics were used by Democrats and unions in Madison last year. Newt Gingrich has recently been accusing Obama of using Alinsky tactics. Just last week, the White House press secretary dodged a question about whether President Obama was deeply influenced by Saul Alinsky.
It is quite likely that President Obama has used religious freedom violations to distract attention from the abortion agenda that is being inserted into ObamaCare regulations.
Remember Bart Stupak? The Pro-Life Democrat from Michigan who opposed the inclusion of abortion in ObamaCare? The guy who caved at the last minute and allowed ObamaCare to go through? He supposedly caved because Obama promised to sign an Executive Order that purported to bar federal funding of abortion through ObamaCare.
What ever happened to that promise? Now ObamaCare not only includes abortion coverage, but will require Catholics to pay for and provide abortifacients!
Remember Obama promising that there would be no abortion in ObamaCare? In the YouTube video, President Obama reverses his position totally and repeatedly, depending on his audience. As though unaware that he is filmed and that the films could be compared. A President who has an iPhone should be aware of the potential for comparison of his speeches on YouTube. Now, as it turns out, abortion is more than covered in ObamaCare. All of Obama’s previous promises and Executive Orders were lies. This man does not seem to feel bound by his word or by telling the truth.
Is the Obama Philosophy internally consistent?
Already the Obama administration has introduced a very dangerous and negative perspective into our national thinking: we will not let the bottom half of Americans, who don’t pay taxes, to be “taken advantage of” by the top half of Americans, who “don’t pay their fair share.” Think about that; the lack of logic is astounding. If the top half of Americans are supporting not only themselves but also the bottom half of Americans, how is it that they can be accused of “not paying their fair share?” Obama’s contradictions are not limited to his blatant lies, but these contradictions pervade his entire philosophy.
Even those collecting “benefits” must realize that it would be more enjoyable for them to have an income much larger than government-provided “benefits.” If they vote for a “benefit” society, the “half” of America paying the bills will continue to shrink. Ergo, the benefits will shrink. If the benefit-ees ever did break out into becoming benefit-ers, they would be taxed to death, so why bother? This is the recipe for spiraling into depression – both economic and mental.
Violation of the Constitution
The Obama administration, in its efforts to force the top half of Americans to subsidize the bottom half of Americans and to redistribute the wealth, is recklessly violating the Constitution of the United States. The number of violations is growing by the day, as appointed judges reverse the voice of democracy, and as new executive powers are invented.
The recent violations of freedom of religion and of conscience are not the only violations occurring. Numerous additional items are being railroaded in “under the radar,” even as this latest Conscience Protection scandal goes on.
- Obama has just appointed a new chief of staff , who is an expert on executive powers, and who is expected to help Obama advance his agenda without congressional approval.
- Obama is continuing to use recess appointments to circumvent the need for congressional approval of his appointees.
- The constitutionality of Obama’s use of Czars has also been questioned. NewsMax 1-31-12
The Forgotten Man
As the Obama administration tramples religious rights, property rights, and Constitutional checks and balances, the citizens of the United States, the voters, are forgotten.
The majority who want fiscal responsibility are forgotten.
The majority who oppose federal funding of abortion are forgotten.
The majority who are religious (80%) are forgotten.
The majority who define marriage as one man and one woman are forgotten.
The majority of America has become the Forgotten Man.
This dilemma is expressed in an art piece, The Forgotten Man. The painter expresses shock at the direction our country is heading. It shows a despondent “common man” sitting on a bench, and behind him are all the previous Presidents of the United States. The Constitution and the dollar, ripped and wrinkled, are strewn on the ground, one piece lying firmly under Barack Obama’s foot. James Madison stoops, gesturing with alarm at the Constitution under Barak Obama’s foot. George Washington, Abraham Lincoln and Ronald Reagan look pleadingly at Barak Obama, sympathetically indicating toward the depressed common man. Barak’s back is turned, his arms are defiantly crossed. He looks unmoved.
This piece of art can be viewed at the artist’s website, complete with explanations of each figure scrolled over.
President Obama Has Sold Us Out:
The Obama administration’s demand for free access to unlimited sexual expression unfettered by any consequences is about as realistic and possible as a demand for free access to unlimited gluttony, accompanied by free unlimited liposuction at the expense of those who do not participate in the excess. Or a demand for free access to unlimited money, with immunity from prosecution for theft.
What ever gave people the idea that sexuality is not subject to moderation, responsibility and common sense, as are all our other appetites and capabilities?
Opponents of religious values should realize that they are the extremists, that the majority of Americans (80%) are religious, 2/3 support abstinence before marriage, and 2/3 oppose federal funding of abortion.
Join the Catholics:
Become politically active
Santorum is Only GOP Candidate Beating Obama, Rasmussen Daily Poll Finds – CNS News 2-6-12