Sharpton: Obama needs to dictate to the Catholic Church to maintain separation of church and state, or something

posted at 11:10 am on February 6, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

Someone has a very confused idea about the separation of church and state, and surprisingly, it’s the Reverend in this Morning Joe panel today. Working off of Peggy Noonan’s Wall Street Journal column from Saturday, Al Sharpton argues that Barack Obama had to dictate to the Catholic Church to violate its religious tenets in order to … preserve the separation of church and state?

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Rev. Al Sharpton: No, I think you have to have the reverse argument, and that is if I want to seek employment and have employment in a church but that I disagree with the dogma and theology of the church, do I have the right to be protected by law? And I think that what the Obama administration is saying that you do not have to follow the tenets of a church organization to be an employee of a church.

Scarborough: Do you think this is a good decision?

Sharpton: If we are going to have a separation of church and state, we’re going to have a separation of church and state. Whether I would personally agree with the decision or not, the question is do I have a right to make that law?

This is an absurd perversion of the concept of separation of church and state.  When Thomas Jefferson wrote that (it’s not found in American law), he meant that the church should not dictate to the State on law — and that the state should not dictate to the church on doctrine. Jefferson wanted to avoid establishing a state religion run by Parliament that had the power to manipulate the spiritual for the sake of the secular. That is exactly what Obama proposes to do in this case: dictate to the Catholic Church and its organizations that its doctrine on contraception, abortion, and sterilization are incorrect and force them to fund those practices that violate their most deeply held beliefs on the sanctity of life, all to satisfy Obama’s political needs.

Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski aren’t buying Sharpton’s spin:

Mika Brzezinski: Obviously they’re getting money from the government. Having said that, the Catholic religion believes certain things; they believe it to be fact. And so you’re asking them not to be Catholic if you impose these regulations on them.

Scarborough: You have a lot of Catholics who are pro-choice who were offended by this decision…The very idea that a centralized government, a centralized state can reach out and tell the church…Kathleen Parker put it this way “You have to forfeit your most fundamental beliefs or face prohibitive penalties or close hospitals, schools, charities, etc…” I must say it’s a staggering, staggering decision by HHS…[to Mika] You’re a Catholic. What are your thoughts?

Brzezinski: I think it’s wrong; I agree with you. And I think it was an overstep.

The Catholic Church’s hospitals get money from the government, but only for caring for the otherwise indigent.  If that’s the basis of the intervention, then Catholic hospitals will likely close their doors.  The bishops will not allow for abortions and sterilizations that violate the very mission on which those hospitals are based — the protection and promotion of sacred human life.  That will only make matters worse for the poor, and also for the government that would have to fill the very large gap left by the closing of hundreds of hospitals and clinics.

If one disagrees with the Catholic Church’s doctrine on the sanctity of human life, then they don’t need to work for their institutions, as Scarborough says later in the segment.  Otherwise, they can buy their own abortions, contraception, and sterilization.  Catholics who see these as deep sins should not be forced to underwrite them through their own church (it’s bad enough that we’re doing so through the government), and especially not based on an elitist diktat from a government that is supposed to stay out of church business.


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When people ran from the afflicted, like the lepers, it was the Catholics who sought them out and ministered to them…when Aids began killing off the “untouchables” it was the Catholics who set up the first hospitals to minister and heal them…everyone else denied them.
I am not Catholic, but throughout the ages, the Catholics have sought out the “least among us” and have ministered, healed, fed, cared for them when everyone else turned their back out of fear, distrust, irrational beliefs, ignorance.
And now, because they value the sanctity of life, whether unborn, born with affliction, or “diseased”, the state thinks they know better.

All human life, to a Catholic, is precious, a God given gift to us, sometimes for us to care for, and other times for that precious life to care for us…a relationship of sanctity, built out of the love of Jesus Christ. And no state should interfere with that bond, it is separate from the earthly secular life that drives governments to control our freedom to worship life over government rule.

right2bright on February 6, 2012 at 1:36 PM

When the Church was silient on Nancy Pelosi and some of her friends, who always cross themselves in public…I’m silent in defending the Church.

KOOLAID2 on February 6, 2012 at 1:38 PM

‘but resist we much’

Seven Percent Solution on February 6, 2012 at 1:39 PM

A bit of both. A group that indoctrinates children is in some sense a cult in the negative sense. In spite of my opinion about that institution I respect their constitutional rights.

Annar on February 6, 2012 at 1:31 PM

So your family is a cult…every religion is a cult…every school is a cult? Boy Scouts/Girl Scouts a cult? You certainly have a broad brush…

right2bright on February 6, 2012 at 1:40 PM

KOOLAID2 on February 6, 2012 at 1:38 PM

Much like the Mormon church and Romney, when Mitt was promoting abortion?

right2bright on February 6, 2012 at 1:41 PM

KOOLAID2 on February 6, 2012 at 1:38 PM

The woman takes communion for crying out loud….you’d think she’d burst into flames!

Tim_CA on February 6, 2012 at 1:42 PM

That is exactly what Obama proposes to do in this case: dictate to the Catholic Church and its organizations that its doctrine on contraception, abortion, and sterilization are incorrect and force them to fund those practices that violate their most deeply held beliefs on the sanctity of life,


Why is this always framed as a Catholic issue?
If Obooba tells employers of any faith to hand out contraceptives to employees, and that faith doesn’t approve of contraception, they will drop their employees’ heal insurance and force them onto the state exchanges.

It’s as unjust for force me to hand out contraceptives as it is to force a RC hospital to do so.

Akzed on February 6, 2012 at 1:47 PM

This HHS ruling has broader significance than the immediate concern among Catholics that they will be forced to subsidize something that is against their teaching.

Note that the ruling is based on the difference between what is properly part of a church and what is merely affiliated with a church. This ruling specifically claims that Catholic hospitals are not part of the Church. The same ruling can be interpreted to say that Notre Dame University (or any other Catholic school) is also not part of the Church, but merely affiliated with it.

If the government can decide to treat parts of a church differently, then they are very close to defining what is an allowable church function and what isn’t. And, oh by the way, if the government decides something isn’t really part of a church, then they can tax it and regulate it as much as they want, thereby changing the very reason for its exitence.

Trashhauler on February 6, 2012 at 1:48 PM

LYING Scumbags- these ah@les can give unions all the waivers they need- but when it comes to Catholics- Uh- uh …. well no sorry can’t do that.
This coming from Food Stamp- Waiver Maobama, whom seems to be able to do anything he wants.
.

One word obie ! ——– W-A-I-V-E-R-S

FlaMurph on February 6, 2012 at 1:49 PM

Why is this always framed as a Catholic issue? If Obooba tells employers of any faith to hand out contraceptives to employees, and that faith doesn’t approve of contraception, they will drop their employees’ heal insurance and force them onto the state exchanges.

It’s as unjust for force me to hand out contraceptives as it is to force a RC hospital to do so.

Akzed on February 6, 2012 at 1:47 PM

looks like you just agreed with Ed and most of the people posting on this thread….most of us know this isn’t just a “catholic Issue”

Tim_CA on February 6, 2012 at 1:51 PM

His resignation from office arrest and conviction would be a great first step toward economic recovery. The majority of Americans are sick of his condescension, his policies, his racist bigotry, and his incompetence. Obama is “the most disastrous president in our history.”

This is the most corrupt, incompetent, dangerous tyrannical administration in American history.

Brushjumper on February 6, 2012 at 1:34 PM

Cleombrotus on February 6, 2012 at 1:51 PM

1879 Reynolds v. United States

“Laws are made for the government of actions, and while they cannot interfere with mere religious belief and opinion, they may with practices.”

Catholics can have religious belief all day long about the sanctity of life, but the government has already asserted that it can interfere with the practice of those beliefs.

Sebastian on February 6, 2012 at 1:52 PM

When the Church was silient on Nancy Pelosi and some of her friends, who always cross themselves in public…I’m silent in defending the Church.

KOOLAID2 on February 6, 2012 at 1:38 PM

Except that the church wasn’t silent. Many bishops spoke against it (in fact there have been many articles in HA about bishops speaking out), and many of the faithful (who are also the church)have and are speaking out, including many right here in HA. I am not sure who you think “the church is”. It is in fact composes of the hierarchy, the clergy and the laity, past and present, here and in heaven. The cases you are talking about are under the purview of these politicians’ ordinary bishops, they are the ones who would take action about the likes of Pelosi, and their actions would first and foremost be guided by pastoral, not political, concerns. There is nothing the majority of Catholics, including the vast majority of bishops can do about it.

neuquenguy on February 6, 2012 at 1:57 PM

Why is this always framed as a Catholic issue?

Akzed on February 6, 2012 at 1:47 PM

First they came for the Catholics . . .

Mangy Scot on February 6, 2012 at 1:59 PM

Republicans/conservatives have tied themselves up in yet another of the slippiest slippery slopes ever.

The gov (taxpayers) shouldn’t be forced to fund any charities/churches/hospitals/etc… Let the taxpayers donate as they wish. Get the gov completely out of this mess.

Because yes, when the gov doles out confiscated tax dollars, the taxpayers should have a voice and control over how its spent. And yes, this should apply to anyone receiving gov money. Let’s start with drug testing welfare recipients, those receiving unemployment benefits, etc… Life should be difficult if you are recieving funds, and yes, all your rights should be stripped away if you are living of confiscated money.

I suppose conservatives will love being even more neck deep in political drama and desperate spin when they want to have a say in how 1000′s of Mosques/Islamic “charities”/non-profits are being run, where the money is going, and how their “community outreach/education/services” are being implemented, etc..

nottakingsides on February 6, 2012 at 2:01 PM

This coming from Food Stamp- Waiver Maobama, whom seems to be able to do anything he wants.

FlaMurph on February 6, 2012 at 1:49 PM

If you think so now, wait until his lame-duck term, the sky is the limit, the constitution, congress, the courts, and the american people all be da%%ed.

neuquenguy on February 6, 2012 at 2:06 PM

The gov (taxpayers) shouldn’t be forced to fund any charities/churches/hospitals/etc… Let the taxpayers donate as they wish. Get the gov completely out of this mess.

nottakingsides on February 6, 2012 at 2:01 PM

The quicker you discover that “The Government” and “Taxpayers” are two seperate entities with (often) conflicting goals….the more it will make sense to you…..but thanks for the long post.

Tim_CA on February 6, 2012 at 2:07 PM

nottakingsides on February 6, 2012 at 2:01 PM

This has nothing to do with organizations taking tax dollars, this mandate applies whether they do or not.

neuquenguy on February 6, 2012 at 2:09 PM

The quicker you discover that “The Government” and “Taxpayers” are two seperate entities with (often) conflicting goals….the more it will make sense to you…..but thanks for the long post.

Tim_CA on February 6, 2012 at 2:07 PM

Interesting point.

Esthier on February 6, 2012 at 2:09 PM

nottakingsides on February 6, 2012 at 2:01 PM

1. I agree that charities should not be funded by the government.

2. This has nothing to do with government funding. It’s a mandate regardless of whether or not you take government money and will not go away if these hospitals stop taking tax payer dollars to care for poorer people.

Esthier on February 6, 2012 at 2:10 PM

KOOLAID2 on February 6, 2012 at 1:38 PM

The woman takes communion for crying out loud….you’d think she’d burst into flames!
Tim_CA on February 6, 2012 at 1:42 PM

Her time’s coming.

listens2glenn on February 6, 2012 at 2:20 PM

listens2glenn on February 6, 2012 at 2:20 PM

We’ll all know her time is coming when she actually starts walking the Catholic walk…

affenhauer on February 6, 2012 at 2:28 PM

We’ll all know her time is coming when she actually starts walking the Catholic walk…

affenhauer on February 6, 2012 at 2:28 PM

LMAO.

Sad but true (can you reserve a confessional for two to three weeks?).

Tim_CA on February 6, 2012 at 2:30 PM

Sad but true (can you reserve a confessional for two to three weeks?).

Tim_CA on February 6, 2012 at 2:30 PM

Dunno – last time I went I was in there for over an hour. They probably will have to run the priests in shifts when her time comes…

affenhauer on February 6, 2012 at 2:39 PM

For a non-Catholic, you articulate the basic tenets of Catholicism better than most Catholics do. Right on…right2bright !!

monalisa on February 6, 2012 at 2:39 PM

Her time’s coming.

listens2glenn on February 6, 2012 at 2:20 PM

Do you think she’d act like she does if she really believed in God’s judgment? Maybe she thinks she’s above God’s judgment. Do they have botox in hell?

swinia sutki on February 6, 2012 at 2:40 PM

FlaMurph on February 6, 2012 at 1:49 PM

It’s a too mportant issue to just come up with a temporary fix and give the chatolic charities a waiver…sure, as a first step he should have done just that, but my understanding is thatthese waivers expire at some point and this whole thing needs a permanent fix…but hey, meanwhile rest assured that Barry started to go to church again these days, he has to be seen as deeply religious and pious after he just assaulted the religious freedoms in this country…his image makers might have gotten that a tad wrong though,who the heck believes this man for a sec that he actually have any religious inclinations…

jimver on February 6, 2012 at 2:43 PM

Has, not have..

jimver on February 6, 2012 at 2:44 PM

What if the Government Ordered the Human Rights Campaign to Cover Conversion Therapy for Gays?

Primusprimer on February 6, 2012 at 2:42 PM

I don’t know. But isn’t that the danger of forcing companies to cover elective medicine? If “separation of church and state” means that no company can make these things inaccessible to us by not covering it, then shouldn’t something like that be covered? Clearly some people see a reason to use those services.

Esthier on February 6, 2012 at 2:46 PM

Life should be difficult if you are recieving funds, and yes, all your rights should be stripped away if you are living of confiscated money. nottakingsides on February 6, 2012 at 2:01 PM

Wow, that doesn’t leave many rights.

So lemme get this straight: if someone’s on food stamps, the government should be able to shoot her? I mean, ’cause she’d have no rights and all in your dystopia.

Akzed on February 6, 2012 at 2:48 PM

This is an absurd perversion of…

…whatever topic is dribbling from Sharpton’s piehole. He’s a doubletalk-aholic and he’s never been very good at it.

infidel4life on February 6, 2012 at 2:57 PM

I think the syphilis is in it’s advanced stage with Rev Al.

jukin3 on February 6, 2012 at 3:11 PM

Why is this always framed as a Catholic issue?

Akzed on February 6, 2012 at 1:47 PM

That likely is what our dictator thinks of when he angrily visualizes the “typical white person.”

viking01 on February 6, 2012 at 3:11 PM

jimver on February 6, 2012 at 2:43 PM

.
Agree. Permanence needed.
But Oblamer has decided to be arbiter general of America- and while exempting his crony donor union pals, et. al, from the scourge obiecare, he has shown he can devise a work around to his crap samich HC. His absence to do so here clearly shows he wants to attack the Catholic church and its outreach, and force his ideology here.
.
Rs can only hope the oblamer Catholics ‘come home” in Nov.

FlaMurph on February 6, 2012 at 3:20 PM

Sharpton is also the guy who said “the American public overwhelmingly voted for socialism when they voted for Barack Obama.” Sharpton is just a shill for Obama.

Gladtobehere on February 6, 2012 at 3:25 PM

Sharpton can’t articulate a coherent sentence. The problem is that folks in the Obama administration think exactly what @RevAl is trying to say: the only way to get religion out of government is by government control of every religious idea it can squash.

bteacher99 on February 6, 2012 at 3:28 PM

I’ve heard that upwards of 1/3 of the US medical hospital and clinic system is Catholic, and that Catholic medical services services more poor and uninsured than any other system, and much more than any state or federal system. Anyone have actual statistics on this?

telmah on February 6, 2012 at 3:32 PM

The gov (taxpayers) shouldn’t be forced to fund any charities/churches/hospitals/etc… Let the taxpayers donate as they wish. Get the gov completely out of this mess.

nottakingsides on February 6, 2012 at 2:01 PM

And Planned Parenthood ? Should taxpayers subsidize abortions and extortion artists, too ?

DevilsPrinciple on February 6, 2012 at 3:36 PM

But if the Messiah tells the Catholic Church they have to do something, isn’t that sort of like ‘direction from the head office’? Any other President and crazy old mixed up Joe would have a point, but Al’s right. If it is coming from God himself, shouldn’t the church fall into line? The founding fathers never anticipated that God, himself, would some day be president.

PorchDawg on February 6, 2012 at 3:36 PM

He’s a doubletalk-aholic and he’s never been very good at it.

infidel4life on February 6, 2012 at 2:57 PM

That’s what makes him so infuriating yet so much fun…..he’s just such a friggin’ transparent foolish, self-serving, racialist panderer….that you’re amazed he’s never called on it!

Tim_CA on February 6, 2012 at 3:37 PM

Sharpton is also the guy who said “the American public overwhelmingly voted for socialism when they voted for Barack Obama.” Sharpton is just a shill for Obama.

Gladtobehere on February 6, 2012 at 3:25 PM

Yeah, but Sharpton was right: the American public did vote for socialism when they voted for Barack Obama. Then-Senator Obama’s (necessarily brief) voting record in the Senate was to the left of Bernie Sanders, the only (self-identified) socialist in the Senate. Any literate person who bothered to read anything at all about the political beliefs or biography of Barack Obama would know he is just a little to the right of Che Guevera on the political spectrum. To his credit, the President has only half-heartedly attempted to disguise his far-Left, socialist leanings. According to Marxist dialectic, capitalism inevitably transitions to socialism, and from there to the proletarian glories awaiting us in Communist Utopia. I would imagine Obama sees himself as a kind of shepherd, nudging us along the trail.

It’s odd to me when Left-wing pundits take umbrage when President Obama is described or identified as a socialist, as if the only time the socialist label may be applied is when a person says he or she is a socialist.

Me, I apply the duck test: walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, it’s a duck. President Obama is most definitely a socialist duck.

troyriser_gopftw on February 6, 2012 at 3:40 PM

If the government can decide to treat parts of a church differently, then they are very close to defining what is an allowable church function and what isn’t. And, oh by the way, if the government decides something isn’t really part of a church, then they can tax it and regulate it as much as they want, thereby changing the very reason for its exitence.

Trashhauler on February 6, 2012 at 1:48 PM

Which of course raises the question: what use is a guarantee of freedom of religion if the government gets to redefine religion at will?

In effect, the government can regulate any religious belief or practice we have by simply declaring it to be non-religious.

And don’t think for a second that they wouldn’t do exactly that in order to claim the power to regulate all education.

tom on February 6, 2012 at 3:40 PM

I agree. I loved that show too!

ted c on February 6, 2012 at 1:32 PM

me too!

Dr. Demento on February 6, 2012 at 3:40 PM

Okay, so we have religious faith and health care. Add to this list economies and the free market and you pretty much have a fairly complete tally of subjects that the President has absolutely no understanding of. And yet, like most liberals, this does not stop him from having very strong opinions on the subjects and a deep seated desire to control them.

I wonder if they keep the cockpit door locked on Marine One just so Barack won’t come in thinking he can fly the helicopter.

PorchDawg on February 6, 2012 at 3:48 PM

It’ll be interesting to see how our Catholic leaders react to Obama’s direction.

Professional Catholics such as our bishops and priests have already volunteered to serve in a strict top down governmental system – the Catholic Church. Which may go a bit to explain how such personalities might not chafe too much to a top down secular system such as the Obama administration.

Additionally, professional Catholics make their living off of the collected offerings of the lay people. They don’t have to worry about making a mortgage. And often there is a line of parishioners with gifts. The socialist model works for these professionals in the church setting, so its not too hard to see how many may gravitate toward the democratic party.

Or, perhaps the issue of life may snap our religious leaders out of their spell. I guess we’ll see.

shinty on February 6, 2012 at 3:50 PM

Black churches have always preached politics from the pulpit. They even hold voter drives after church, and in the church! This guy is a racist hypocrite and parasite…………..

Ever heard a REV Wright sermon?

vietvet68 on February 6, 2012 at 3:51 PM

This is clearly evidence of an incontrovertible consensus that this Administration is the cause of “Climate Change”

J_Crater on February 6, 2012 at 4:05 PM

It’s easy to say “if you don’t like it, don’t work there,” unless you’re a nurse and the only job opening is at a Catholic hospital. If the Catholic church is going to operate secular institutions, they should abide by secular laws, not the other way around.

The advancement and application of medicine depends on a scientific aversion to dogma of any kind; we can’t afford, as a society, to surrender that principle to any religion.

RightOFLeft on February 6, 2012 at 4:08 PM

RightOFLeft on February 6, 2012 at 4:08 PM

.
and THAT’s the purpose of a “Planned Parenthood” and the plethora of abortion clinics. Advancement of medicine and access has nothing to do with eliminating the Catholic Church Hospital institutions that have existed for 100 years. You liberals would call this “union-busting”

FlaMurph on February 6, 2012 at 4:18 PM

David French on NRO just now posted a piece worth reading.

I’m with French on this one. I’m Protestant, but you can count me as a Catholic while this is going on. We hang together or we hang separately.

troyriser_gopftw on February 6, 2012 at 4:24 PM

It’s easy to say “if you don’t like it, don’t work there,” unless you’re a nurse and the only job opening is at a Catholic hospital. If the Catholic church is going to operate secular institutions, they should abide by secular laws, not the other way around.

Pardon me but healing and feeding the poor and sick are commands of Christ and therefore hardly secular. But apparently, like Obooba, you want to define our religion for us.

The advancement and application of medicine depends on a scientific aversion to dogma of any kind; we can’t afford, as a society, to surrender that principle to any religion. RightOFLeft on February 6, 2012 at 4:08 PM

My gosh. So a Christian can’t be a lab tech, nurse, or doctor? Is that what you mean?

Akzed on February 6, 2012 at 4:25 PM

Catholic hospitals will likely close their doors. The bishops will not allow for abortions and sterilizations that violate the very mission on which those hospitals are based — the protection and promotion of sacred human life.

Is there a new Catholic Church that will stand up to liberal politicians and take action? Because I’ve never seen the existing Catholic Church do such.

RJL on February 6, 2012 at 4:29 PM

RightOFLeft on February 6, 2012 at 4:08 PM

Taking care of the sick is one of those items that make up Pure and undefiled Religion. It’s a command to believers. For the Catholics and other Denominations that run Hospitals it mean the Hospitals are just as sacred as the Church.

chemman on February 6, 2012 at 4:34 PM

Yeah, but Sharpton was right: the American public did vote for socialism when they voted for Barack Obama…

Me, I apply the duck test: walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, it’s a duck. President Obama is most definitely a socialist duck.

troyriser_gopftw on February 6, 2012 at 3:40 PM

Yes, if anyone spent some time on the internet in 2008, they could find information that showed Obama was a socialist. However, those who called Obama a socialist were called raaacist and then attacked by the media, e.g., remember Joe the Plumber. Many independents voted thinking Obama was some kind of moderate left-of-center Democrat who was being smeared by Bush-type Republicans. It was the most remarkable example of media brainwashing or group denial that I’ve ever seen. There are still many Democrats who swear that Obama is not a socialist, and opposition to Obama is part of a “vast right-wing conspiracy” consisting of the Koch brothers, Fox News, and raaacist websites like Hotair.

Gladtobehere on February 6, 2012 at 4:35 PM

2. This has nothing to do with government funding. It’s a mandate regardless of whether or not you take government money and will not go away if these hospitals stop taking tax payer dollars to care for poorer people.

Esthier on February 6, 2012 at 2:10 PM

If you know, was it a mandate that certain Hospitals care for poorer people? I wonder if they had a choice in that.

bluefox on February 6, 2012 at 4:35 PM

Catholic hospitals will likely close their doors. The bishops will not allow for abortions and sterilizations that violate the very mission on which those hospitals are based — the protection and promotion of sacred human life.

Stop. Stop! The same bishops who commune the Pelosis and Kennedys and Bidens etc who vote for funding for Planned Barrenhood? Them?

Maybe this is their wake-up call since they seem to be responding to this latest outrage in a cohesively Christian way, but don’t judge how they might react to this based on past performance. That’s purdy funny.

Akzed on February 6, 2012 at 4:35 PM

The advancement and application of medicine depends on a scientific aversion to dogma of any kind; we can’t afford, as a society, to surrender that principle to any religion. RightOFLeft on February 6, 2012 at 4:08 PM

Nonsense! Faith in an individual’s religion of choice is more important and healing than all your scientific approaches to the human condition.

lhuffman34 on February 6, 2012 at 4:38 PM

Surprised you didn’t explore Sharpton’s bizarre notion that “what the Obama administration is saying that you do not have to follow the tenets of a church organization to be an employee of a church.” That literally made me LOL.

To believe that the POTUS (acting as pseudo-judiciary) can force a church to employ non-believers is possibly more ridiculous than the rest of what he said. Even the Supreme Court has (unanimously) permitted a church to ignore the American with Disabilities Act (which is a notoriously difficult law to avoid when violations are claimed) in Hosanna-Tabor Evangelical Lutheran Church and School v. EEOC.

Does Sharpton truly believe that the government can force him to hire Satanists and provide coverage of ritual abortions? He is an odd duck.

Crispian on February 6, 2012 at 4:46 PM

Taking care of the sick is one of those items that make up Pure and undefiled Religion. It’s a command to believers. For the Catholics and other Denominations that run Hospitals it mean the Hospitals are just as sacred as the Church.

chemman on February 6, 2012 at 4:34 PM

If caring for the sick is a command for Catholics, they should care for the sick. That means providing the full range of modern medical treatments, including things like contraception that promote public health.

RightOFLeft on February 6, 2012 at 4:50 PM

My gosh. So a Christian can’t be a lab tech, nurse, or doctor? Is that what you mean?

Akzed on February 6, 2012 at 4:25 PM

Can a Rabbi work at a pig farm? I suppose he could, but he’d have to make some compromises with the strictest doctrines of his religion. Medicine is a secular institution — and there’s a compelling government interest to keep it that way.

RightOFLeft on February 6, 2012 at 4:53 PM

After a couple of fire hose “treatments” at the Barack Obama Hospital for the Criminally Insane, the Rev’runt Sharpton is gonna wish that old Catholic hospital for the mentally ill down the road was still open.

The Rev’runt Sharpton calls himself a “Baptist minister,” but is apparently self-ordained. Preached a sermon in Brooklyn at age four, high school, a couple of years in a local college and dropped out. Once arranged tours for James Brown. But no theological education or ordination.

Actually, Barry Soetoro and his ghouls want the churches completely out of medical care. I mean, Mengle would not have been able to sew twins together while working at the Vatican Sick Bay Clinic.

Horace on February 6, 2012 at 4:54 PM

including things like contraception that promote public health.

RightOFLeft on February 6, 2012 at 4:50 PM

How? Married couples in a committed marriage don’t need them. Underage children don’t need them. So, how do they promote public health?

Oh, that’s right. Condoms protect men who stick “It” into the fecal elimination canal of other men from getting nasty disease as a result of their nasty acts.

And, of course, abortion is another great public health promoter. “Why, that baby could get older and give some one a cold or something. Kill it! Kill it!”

You’re a sad waste of a conceptive moment back in your earliest days of “yute.”

Horace on February 6, 2012 at 5:00 PM

Does Sharpton truly believe that the government can force him to hire Satanists and provide coverage of ritual abortions? He is an odd duck.

Crispian on February 6, 2012 at 4:46 PM

That’s a bridge too far for Sharpton to even think about crossing. Why they even asked his opinion is beyond me. His opinion is always political. Constitutional/Bill of Rights issues are out of his range.

This is a Constitutional/Bill of Rights issue in my opinion.

bluefox on February 6, 2012 at 5:02 PM

This is a Constitutional/Bill of Rights issue in my opinion.

bluefox on February 6, 2012 at 5:02 PM

Definitely. But we circle back to the same problem. Does the GOP have the political will to run with this? Will we hear about this during the next few rounds of bloodletting from the candidates?

Gingrich, Santorum & Romney (wrote that in no particular order) can waste a few rounds of political ammo to make the case that this is a amazing amount of arrogance on the part of the Executive Branch to actually try to usurp power from not only a private organization but a religious one at that.

BlaxPac on February 6, 2012 at 5:10 PM

including things like contraception that promote public health.

RightOFLeft on February 6, 2012 at 4:50 PM

Contraceptives do not promote public health. They break, spread disease and are not reliable to prevent pregnancy if that is one’s use for them.

It is not the vehicle or procedure used that is the issue; it the mandate that is in error. Besides this mandate is about much more than contraceptives. Trying to force the Catholic Church and other Religious Organizations to practice what Planned Parenthood does is trying to destroy their faith. Bow down in other words. You have no rights except what we the state allow. That’s what this is about.

Oh, and if you agree with this, then you need to change your name to “left of left”.

bluefox on February 6, 2012 at 5:11 PM

tom on February 6, 2012 at 3:40 PM

Thank you, thank you, and may the saints bless and keep you for saying “raise the question” instead of “beg the question.”

UnrepentantCurmudgeon on February 6, 2012 at 5:16 PM

Does Sharpton truly believe that the government can force him to hire Satanists and provide coverage of ritual abortions? He is an odd duck.

Yes, and that is true even early in the day before he gets tired and the dementia truly starts to take hold.

UnrepentantCurmudgeon on February 6, 2012 at 5:18 PM

If caring for the sick is a command for Catholics, they should care for the sick. That means providing the full range of modern medical treatments, including things like contraception that promote public health.

RightOFLeft on February 6, 2012 at 4:50 PM

And that would include third trimester abortions? As a physician I’m puzzled that conceptus termination procedures are practically the only on-demand medical services available to interrupt a physiologic process that is not subject to question. That, obviously, has nothing to do with “caring for the sick.”

dgstock1947 on February 6, 2012 at 5:20 PM

bluefox on February 6, 2012 at 5:02 PM
Definitely. But we circle back to the same problem. Does the GOP have the political will to run with this? Will we hear about this during the next few rounds of bloodletting from the candidates?

Gingrich, Santorum & Romney (wrote that in no particular order) can waste a few rounds of political ammo to make the case that this is a amazing amount of arrogance on the part of the Executive Branch to actually try to usurp power from not only a private organization but a religious one at that.

BlaxPac on February 6, 2012 at 5:10 PM

I’ve thot a lot about this issue since last week when a thread was up(1/31/12) I think Newt would bring it up, since he already said a war on religion was being waged. Gov. Perry was the first to say it. Romney & Santorum may also, since it’s a hot topic now. The GOP? No, they are all silent as a church mouse and have been since 2008:-) They’ve been the go along get along gang. GAGA..

I have seen no one from in Congress to take any action against what has been going on in this Country. The States have done so much more and are suffering for it.

Sarah has been speaking out just as she’s always done and that is much more than elected Congressperson’s have done.

I’m concerned about this Obamacare in that it appears that it’s open ended and they add whatever they want, whenever. Should ask those House and Senate members that voted for it. But I repeat myself as I spent several months trying to get them not to pass it.

bluefox on February 6, 2012 at 5:25 PM

dgstock1947 on February 6, 2012 at 5:20 PM

Amen Doctor!

bluefox on February 6, 2012 at 5:31 PM

Rs can only hope the oblamer Catholics ‘come home” in Nov.

FlaMurph on February 6, 2012 at 3:20 PM

oh, they will…a lot of them anyways…meanwhile Barry might convert to Catholicism, who knows, to show that he doesn’t have anything against the Catholics in particular…

jimver on February 6, 2012 at 5:40 PM

Do American Catholics still care that much about this kind of thing?

Crispian on February 6, 2012 at 5:43 PM

Do American Catholics still care that much about this kind of thing?

Crispian on February 6, 2012 at 5:43 PM

About what “kind of thing?” That thing called “losing your religious liberty?” Which, by the way, also applies to you, if you belong to a particular church or even no church. Even atheists should be concerned; the government might force you to believe in them, instead of being free not to believe in God.

In short, you betcha I care!

PatriotGal2257 on February 6, 2012 at 5:56 PM

Do American Catholics still care that much about this kind of thing?

Crispian on February 6, 2012 at 5:43 PM

You mean, do American Catholics still care about a federal government that acts as though it has the right to dictate to employers what kind of health insurance coverage they provide or that they must provide health insurance at all? Do they still care about a federal government that acts as though it has the right to dictate to individuals what kind of health insurance coverage they must carry or that they must carry health insurance at all? Do American Catholics still care about a federal government that sidesteps Constitutional guarantees when it finds them inconvenient and tries to force the religious to act in ways contrary to their doctrines and beliefs? Is that what you meant??

SukieTawdry on February 6, 2012 at 5:57 PM

Do they have botox in hell?

swinia sutki on February 6, 2012 at 2:40 PM

Heh.

Tim_CA on February 6, 2012 at 6:02 PM

Nincompoop is an “N” word

moochy on February 6, 2012 at 6:12 PM

I was right – Obama is a dictator. Isnt that why Rev Al wants him to dictate? The Rev is pathetic. He does Africa Americans about as much good as someone appearing in black face that imitates Obama.

iam7545 on February 6, 2012 at 6:15 PM

I’m concerned about this Obamacare in that it appears that it’s open ended and they add whatever they want, whenever. Should ask those House and Senate members that voted for it. But I repeat myself as I spent several months trying to get them not to pass it.

bluefox on February 6, 2012 at 5:25 PM

Indeed, the Dems knew that if they got this trojan horse through they would be able to make their wildest dreams come through on it’s back, this is why Pelosi said you had to pass it to know what is in it, this is why they were willing to sacrifice a couple of election cycles for it.
Unfortunatelly I don’t expect Romney to do much about it. He is not only the author of Obamacare’s Daddy, but he also has dictated mandates just like this against catholic institutions in MA.

neuquenguy on February 6, 2012 at 6:27 PM

For a non-Catholic, you articulate the basic tenets of Catholicism better than most Catholics do. Right on…right2bright !!

monalisa on February 6, 2012 at 2:39 PM

Luther was a Catholic…
It is “pro-choice” for all these liberals, until someone like the Catholic Church exercises their choice…then it becomes “only my choice”.
What pathetic creatures secular humanists are…the sanctity of life is just a political pawn to them.
Historians will shake their head in disbelief many decades from now, wondering how the obvious, a human life, can be so easily destroyed without a hesitation of guilt.

right2bright on February 6, 2012 at 6:40 PM

neuquenguy on February 6, 2012 at 6:27 PM

The conservative Heritage Foundation was the model for Massachussetts health care. Liberals corrupted parts of it with veto overrides, but what don’t they corrupt?

As for Romney, he indicated that rape victims must be offered Plan B, that is all. I think that is a reasonable balance between the rights of the crime victim and the rights of the church. This deals with a crime that puts a woman in further danger. (Yes a forced pregnancy is dangerous to a woman, women still die or are seriously injured from complications even today, not to mention all the psychological damage to her and others)

scotash on February 6, 2012 at 6:54 PM

right2bright on February 6, 2012 at 1:36 PM

Thank you.

catquilt on February 6, 2012 at 6:59 PM

“It took Obama’s Administration to get 100% of the US Bishops to agree. Even the Pope can’t do that.” — Marcel LeJeune (h/t Michael Liccione)

This!

catquilt on February 6, 2012 at 7:04 PM

Unfortunatelly I don’t expect Romney to do much about it. He is not only the author of Obamacare’s Daddy, but he also has dictated mandates just like this against catholic institutions in MA.

neuquenguy on February 6, 2012 at 6:27 PM

I agree. If we don’t take the Senate and add to the House and most importantly elect a new Speaker, nothing will be done in my opinion.
We won’t even know we have a change of the Presidency, LOL

I’ve read a lot of Romney’s record and some other info about his advisor’s lobbying for Freddie Mac.

We need a mean President, LOL Newt will take every bit of power from Washington that he can. He’s proved that and that’s why it’s ABN:-) When so many factions hate you, one must look to see why. What have you done to deserve this? Hmmmm

Mark Levin is getting all over Romney for attacking Santorum, LOL

bluefox on February 6, 2012 at 7:11 PM

As for Romney, he indicated that rape victims must be offered Plan B, that is all. I think that is a reasonable balance between the rights of the crime victim and the rights of the church.

scotash on February 6, 2012 at 6:54 PM

Which from a Catholic perspective it is at least as bad as Obama’s mandate on contraception, it is actually worse because it puts Catholics in direct material collaboration with an abortion since it requires them to actually administer the plan B, not just pay for it.
Whether we agree on the good/evil of abortion or not, still the fact remains that Obama and Mitt are equivalent in this issue of forcing Catholics to violate their conscience.
Thankfully the MA legislation gave Catholic hospitals a way out, but not thanks to Romney.

neuquenguy on February 6, 2012 at 7:12 PM

This is not just about contraception and abortion. Many nursing homes are also Catholic. End of life care will be the next target.

monalisa on February 6, 2012 at 7:29 PM

If you think so now, wait until his lame-duck term, the sky is the limit, the constitution, congress, the courts, and the american people all be da%%ed.

neuquenguy on February 6, 2012 at 2:06 PM

I was hoping that this IS his lame-duck term…

Jack Slade on February 6, 2012 at 7:30 PM

If caring for the sick is a command for Catholics, they should care for the sick. That means providing the full range of modern medical treatments, including things like contraception that promote public health.

RightOFLeft on February 6, 2012 at 4:50 PM

Pregnancy may be a lot of things but a sickness it isn’t.

As an Evangelical finally the Catholic Church hierarchy is starting to speak out as some of their flock have been for years.

BullShooterAsInElk on February 6, 2012 at 8:06 PM

This whole separation of Church and State started with Roger Williams and the Baptist on Rhode Island. The Colonies wanted to have an official state church, The American Church of England or the Congregational Church, assuming that churches could not survive without government subsides. The Baptists on the other hand had left England for this very reason, not wanting the government involved in the church and said that they could support themselves and refused to take any government money, under penalty of law. Several Baptist were thrown in jail for operating churches in other states and not accepting government money. That was the showdown that caused Jefferson to write about the separation of church and state. Not that the church should not be allowed to be involved in the public sector, but that the government was not to be funding and dictating what the church did. Baptists believed that if your church couldn’t make it without government funding, then maybe you had the wrong church. As history has shown for the past 200 odd years, churches in this country can do very well without the government and they in fact flourish without intrusion.

flytier on February 6, 2012 at 8:25 PM

Medicine is a secular institution — and there’s a compelling government interest to keep it that way.
RightOFLeft on February 6, 2012 at 4:53 PM

On what basis do you claim “secular status” for the field of medicine?
Our medical technology and capability wouldn’t be any better than that of a Third World country, if it wasn’t for God.

listens2glenn on February 6, 2012 at 8:25 PM

RightOFLeft on February 6, 2012 at 4:50 PM

While I am for the use of contraceptives, I am NOT going to concede that the use of contraceptives qualifies “as promoting public health.”
It is an insult to a person’s intelligence to even ATTEMPT to make that claim.

listens2glenn on February 6, 2012 at 8:32 PM

flytier on February 6, 2012 at 8:25 PM

Well said.
But worth noting is that Baptists weren’t the only ‘religious sect’ that fled England on that account.

listens2glenn on February 6, 2012 at 8:36 PM

This deals with a crime that puts a woman in further danger. (Yes a forced pregnancy is dangerous to a woman, women still die or are seriously injured from complications even today, not to mention all the psychological damage to her and others)

scotash on February 6, 2012 at 6:54 PM

absolutely correct…

jimver on February 6, 2012 at 9:34 PM

Brzezinski: I think it was an overstep.

Forget the constitution or the fact that religious freedom is one of the most basic rights declared by the founders … this is just “an overstep”. Obama is ok to ignore the constitution, piss on it, run roughshod over religious freedom any way he chooses, as long as he doesn’t over-step.

Liberalism is a mental disorder.

Jaibones on February 6, 2012 at 9:48 PM

Nancy Scarborough: Do you think this is a good decision?

Normal American Man: When were you first diagnosed as clinically mentally retarded, Al?

Jaibones on February 6, 2012 at 9:49 PM

I’m concerned about this Obamacare in that it appears that it’s open ended and they add whatever they want, whenever. Should ask those House and Senate members that voted for it. But I repeat myself as I spent several months trying to get them not to pass it.

bluefox on February 6, 2012 at 5:25 PM

As long as at least one side of the Congress is being held by the Dems regardless of who’s in the White House and short of a national revolt via lawsuits against the Federal government, Obamacare is for all intent permanent.

I also agree. The current leadership is becoming more willing to acquiescent and not hold the line for nearly anything the more Conservative members of the party want.

I’m not talking about drifting off into Libertarian land, but at least, damnit find one issue and fight to the end. Even if it means losing some power somewhere, take a stand….or take a seat and let us that are willing to fight FIGHT.

BlaxPac on February 6, 2012 at 10:19 PM

When the Church was silient on Nancy Pelosi and some of her friends, who always cross themselves in public…I’m silent in defending the Church.

KOOLAID2 on February 6, 2012 at 1:38 PM

Are you deaf? The Church has been anything but silent about it.

But there is a problem. When someone gets in the communion line, the Priest, Deacon, or Eucharistic Minister has no way of knowing if they are qualified to receive it or not. For all they know, the person may have just confessed their sins, resolved to change their life, and received absolution from another Priest.

It’s not so black and white as you believe. The Church is in the business of winning souls to Christ, including long-time sinners. You don’t win many back if you publicly humiliate them on a whim.

Adjoran on February 7, 2012 at 2:05 AM

A hospital funded by foreign religious sources opens up in Dearborn. On of the rules of the hospital is that no women may work as surgeons, citing religious grounds. Does the government have the authority to step in? Does a female employee directly affected by this law have the right to sue?

NorthernCross on February 7, 2012 at 5:33 AM

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