The ACLU jumps the shark

posted at 10:25 am on February 8, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

For many years, conservatives have considered the ACLU just another left-wing activist organization, cloaked in only the veneer of civil liberties.  Asked of their defense of the Constitution, more than a few conservatives would ask just when the ACLU bothers to fight for Second Amendment rights.  The ACLU protests this perception, pointing to a number of controversial clients they have defended and insist that their mission is only to preserve the civil liberties enshrined in the Bill of Rights and the rest of the US Constitution.

I think this puts the ACLU argument to rest once and for all:

The American Civil Liberty Union announced today that President Obama’s decision to mandate coverage for birth control does not violate religious liberty.

The ACLU’s Alicia Gay warns that the “powerful lobbying arm of the Catholic Church” mistakenly claims that the HHS contraception mandate violates their religious liberty.

Individuals who choose not to pay for employees’ contraceptives, the ACLU counters, are forcing their beliefs on their employees.

“The fundamental promise of religious liberty in this country doesn’t create a right to impose those views on others, including ignoring civil rights laws or denying critical health care,” Gay insists.

Er, who is imposing their beliefs on whom? Catholic employers don’t tell employees — either in church or in hospitals, clinics, or charities — that the use of contraception will end their employment.  As has been tediously pointed out by supporters of Barack Obama’s diktat, plenty of Catholics use contraception and still show up in church.  Plenty of them support abortion on demand, too.  But until now, no one has forced the Catholic Church to fund those actions, which is exactly what this mandate does.  It forces Catholics to pay for services and products for others even though they represent mortal sins in our faith.

The First Amendment is pretty clear on what the government can and cannot do in dictating the actions of religious organizations.  Heck, this should be so clear that even the ACLU should figure it out: “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.”  Dictating to Catholics that they have to fund contraception for their employees when our religion specifically prohibits it — including the use of abortifacients, which is equivalent to killing children in our faith — is prohibiting the free exercise of a core doctrine for Catholics (and many other Christian denominations as well), which is to defend the sanctity of human life.

Is that a “view” of Christians in general, and Catholics specifically?  Yes.  Are we “imposing” it by practicing our religion, including our outreach to the community through the provision of health care to the indigent and charitable works?  Not at all.  Those are voluntary associations, not mandated, unlike ObamaCare, which makes it impossible for the Catholic Church to avoid this mandate by simply ending employer-provided health insurance coverage.  If a religion cannot express its views and live by its tenets because “views” are not protected, then the religious freedom guaranteed by the First Amendment doesn’t exist at all.

Some have tried to claim that because the Catholic Church gets government funding through Medicaid and Medicare reimbursements, their First Amendment rights are no longer applicable.  Really?  Does the government have the right to censor AARP because it participates in Medicare Advantage? How about Social Security recipients? I’d love to see the ACLU brief supporting those arguments, although that may become a reality if Obama remains in office for a second term, based on the ACLU’s statements. Do government contractors lose their First Amendment rights to petition their government?  Considering the activities surrounding Solyndra investor George Kaiser and his frequent visits to the White House, the Obama administration doesn’t appear to think so, and the ACLU was curiously quiet if it believes that.

The rights in the Constitution are not granted to American citizens because the government decided to offer them beneficently at their discretion.  They exist in the document as a testament to our natural rights, part of our innate humanness, and are detailed in the Constitution as a bar to government’s overreach in trampling them.  If the ACLU can’t figure that much out, then not only have they jumped the shark, they’ve nuked the fridge and made themselves entirely irrelevant except for the elitist crowd that cheers on tyranny.  And that is exactly what has happened with this HHS mandate.

In my column for The Week, I point out that there will likely be a large political consequence for this action:

However, Catholics are not, by and large, social conservatives. Obama won the Catholic vote by nine points in 2008 (54 percent to 45 percent). Catholics accounted for a whopping 27 percent of the 2008 electorate. Purposefully alienating that voting bloc in an already-difficult election year risks flipping that vote substantially against Obama in November. Even for those Catholics who don’t agree with church teachings on contraception, the spectacle of a president dictating doctrine to bishops won’t endear them to Obama.

The national number just begins to tell the story. Catholics comprise even higher percentages of the vote in key swing states that Obama must win in order to get a second term. For instance, Obama won Pennsylvania in 2008 by 11 points while losing Catholics — a third of Pennsylvania’s electorate — by 4 percent. With Pennsylvania Catholics now hearing condemnations of Obama’s decision from their bishops, Obama may have put the Keystone State at serious risk. A Republican could win Pennsylvania for the first time since Ronald Reagan.

Florida is another example. Obama carried the Sunshine State by a narrow three-point margin in 2008. Catholics comprised 28 percent of that vote, and Obama only barely won among them, 50 percent to 49 percent. How many of those Catholics will cast another vote for Obama, especially since their own Sen. Marco Rubio — a Catholic himself — has now proposed a bill specifically revoking the new Obama rule and protecting choices of religious conscience? If more than a few switch from Obama to his Republican challenger, Obama will lose 29 electoral votes he can hardly spare.

The damage won’t be limited to Catholics, either, or voters of faith in general. Republicans have long painted Obama as a radical executive inclined to rule by diktat rather than govern by the rule of law. Obama’s mild personal demeanor has helped him deflect this criticism, but forcing Christians to violate their conscience in order to fit his own worldview provides the GOP a great deal of evidence for their argument.

Rick Santorum hit this last theme in his victory speech from Missouri. Expect it to become a prominent attack in the general election, even if the Obama administration backs down this week.


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The ACLU (Anti-Christian Liberties Union) has just shown their idiocy again. This organization is straight out of the pits of hell in my view.

jfs756 on February 8, 2012 at 10:29 AM

The American Communist Liberals Union never had a shark TO jump.

wildcat72 on February 8, 2012 at 10:30 AM

What a bunch of maroons

cmsinaz on February 8, 2012 at 10:31 AM

Yeah they jumped the shark tank on a tricycle, but hey what do you expect from the ACLU?

Scout703 on February 8, 2012 at 10:32 AM

Just compare the liberal´s view on abortion vs unions.
Abortions: right to chose.
Unions: no right to chose.
Makes sense? Not so much!

gullxn on February 8, 2012 at 10:33 AM

The American Civil Liberty Union announced today that President Obama’s decision to mandate coverage for birth control does not violate religious liberty.
==========================

Oops!
*****

ObamaCare’s Great Awakening
HHS tells religious believers to go to hell. The public notices.
Feb 8 2012
***********

The political furor over President Obama’s birth-control mandate continues to grow, even among those for whom contraception poses no moral qualms, and one needn’t be a theologian to understand why. The country is being exposed to the raw political control that is the core of the Obama health-care plan, and Americans are seeing clearly for the first time how this will violate pluralism and liberty.

***
In late January the Health and Human Services Department required almost all insurance plans to cover contraceptive and sterilization methods, including the morning-after pill. The decision came after passionate lobbying by religious groups and liberals from the likes of Planned Parenthood, amid government promises of compromise.

U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius
In the end, Planned Parenthood won. HHS chose to draw the rule’s conscience exceptions for “religious employers” so narrowly that they will not be extended to religious charities, universities, schools, hospitals, soup kitchens, homeless shelters and other institutions that oppose contraception as a matter of religious belief.
(more…..)
============

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204369404577209112780407698.html?mod=googlenews_wsj

canopfor on February 8, 2012 at 6:47 AM

canopfor on February 8, 2012 at 10:33 AM

People are purposefully “missing the point” to deflect blame from Obama, you see the exact same argument made everywhere.

Mord on February 8, 2012 at 10:33 AM

The ACLU (Anti-Christian Liberties Union) has just shown their idiocy again. This organization is straight out of the pits of hell in my view.

jfs756 on February 8, 2012 at 10:29 AM

What did you expect from an organization founded by ardent militant communists whose sole objective is and always has been the destruction of Free Capitalist America and it’s replacement with a Marxist Utopia?

SWalker on February 8, 2012 at 10:35 AM

Wow. That is positively Orwellian language coming from the ACLU.

rockmom on February 8, 2012 at 10:36 AM

O/T,more legal snafu’s!
_______________________

US Supreme Court rejects Ohio’s request to allow execution to proceed over judge’s objection

Submitted 4 mins ago
http://www.breakingnews.com/
=============================

canopfor on February 8, 2012 at 10:37 AM

In my column for The Week, I point out that there will likely be a large political consequence for this action:

it’ll be devastating, i’m sure.

sesquipedalian on February 8, 2012 at 10:37 AM

Some have tried to claim that because the Catholic Church gets government funding through Medicaid and Medicare reimbursements, their First Amendment rights are no longer applicable.

It is important to point out that the jug-eared idiot’s administration does not make this distinction when demanding that contraceptives are a right. Obama and HHS simply say that religious institutions must provide birth control without any reference to the idea that government funding has to be present to make it mandatory. The opt out would be to not offer health coverage at all for employees.

Happy Nomad on February 8, 2012 at 10:38 AM

ACLU = CODE PINK

SDarchitect on February 8, 2012 at 10:38 AM

The RCC has a ministerial exemption. They are looking for a bigger exemption which covers secular employees in non-ministerial occupations.

OptionsTrader on February 8, 2012 at 10:38 AM

The ACLU is the shark. And it jumps often.

platypus on February 8, 2012 at 10:38 AM

The ACLU has always believed the State overrides everything else, even the Constitution. Most, if not all the lawsuits they file seek to put the State in control of the individual. Only when the Consitution agrees with their agenda, do they agree with the Constitution.

What I find amusing sometimes and downright scary at other times, is the way they spin their arguments. As in this case they think the State should be able to dictate the tenets of any and all religions, that the State should be the final arbiter of the divinity of Christ, the significance of Passover, or what can be consumed as food during Ramadan.

gasmeterguy on February 8, 2012 at 10:38 AM

Individuals who choose not to pay for employees’ contraceptives, the ACLU counters, are forcing their beliefs on their employees.

Are the employees being forced to work there? No? Then the only beliefs being forced are those of the government.

RadClown on February 8, 2012 at 10:39 AM

Very well said Mr. Morrissey.

AndAero on February 8, 2012 at 10:41 AM

WTF…???

Ragspierre on February 8, 2012 at 10:42 AM

This is what happens when you elect a Marxist. Just wait for the 2nd term.

faraway on February 8, 2012 at 10:42 AM

What am I missing here? If someone can’t afford birth control they can skip right over to the already federally funded local Planned Parenthood and get it cheap, free, whatever. There is no need to mandate any insurance cover it for free, much less the Catholic Church.

ctmom on February 8, 2012 at 10:43 AM

The RCC has a ministerial exemption. They are looking for a bigger exemption which covers secular employees in non-ministerial occupations.

OptionsTrader on February 8, 2012 at 10:38 AM

You’re totally on the wrong side of this one sport. Even Obama administration is trying to figure out a way to walk back away from this debacle. They screwed up royally and they’re going to lose big.

PackerBronco on February 8, 2012 at 10:44 AM

Aw come on… Big Sister Bertha knows better’n you.

/s

Logus on February 8, 2012 at 10:46 AM

Only now does the Obamassiah and Her Highness of Health Care realize how big a pile they’ve stepped into. The fun part is going to see how they weasel their way out.

GarandFan on February 8, 2012 at 10:47 AM

You know things are getting way out of whack when I’m forced to take a strong stand for the Catholic Church.

mankai on February 8, 2012 at 10:48 AM

Obamaism is the new religion. Big government socialism with a taint of communism and a dash of Chrislim (Christian and Muslim)beliefs.

albill on February 8, 2012 at 10:48 AM

Stupid Mom here, but what “critical health care” is provided by birth control? I’ve been hearing that argument all week, and no one has countered it, so I’m starting to wonder if I’m just too stupid to get it.

Last time I checked, birth control, like the pill or inserts, only served one purpose – preventing pregnancy. IUDs are designed to prevent implantation of a fertilized egg, so they don’t prevent pregnancy, they just prevent a pregnancy from going beyond a couple of weeks. Even a tubal ligation or vasectomy only have one purpose – prevention of pregnancy.

So what “critical health care” issue is denied when employers refuse to provide insurance coverage for birth control?

KimS on February 8, 2012 at 10:48 AM

Not paying for an elective drug or device is not “imposing a view”.

I wonder what would happen if the government was requiring CAIR to buy alcohol or pork for its employees? It could happen under the left’s interpretation of the Commerce Clause ya know.

forest on February 8, 2012 at 10:50 AM

They are going to hang on the ‘woman’s rights for contraception and abortion’. Just think back to the Komen Controversy.

Nope contraception and abortion supersede all other rights and amendments. Ever hear of Roe V Wade? /sarc off..

uhangtight on February 8, 2012 at 10:50 AM

You’re totally on the wrong side of this one sport. Even Obama administration is trying to figure out a way to walk back away from this debacle. They screwed up royally and they’re going to lose big.

PackerBronco on February 8, 2012 at 10:44 AM

Political backpedalling isn’t evidence of a Constitutional issue. If the RCC is politicking for a broader exemption then that’s the way DC works, especially in an election year.

OptionsTrader on February 8, 2012 at 10:50 AM

Then they came for the Catholics,
and I didn’t speak out because I was Protestant.

Lost in Jersey on February 8, 2012 at 10:51 AM

Looks like Evangelicals are the best hope for the Catholic Church.

http://publicreligion.org/site/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/BC-Employers-Religion1.png

mankai on February 8, 2012 at 10:51 AM

So according to the ACLU dolt, I can walk into a Mosque, eating a pork sandwhich, while saying a Hail Mary… and they cannot do anything because they would force their religion on me???

It’s one thing to be on the wrong side of an issue – a whole different ball of wax to be an idiot on the wrong side of an issue.

Odie1941 on February 8, 2012 at 10:51 AM

This whole issue confuses me – don’t various insurance policies cover different things now? I know my policy has sucky to nonexistent dental benefits – other peoples’policies cover lots of stuff. My policy has better prescription coverage than some I know of. Isn’t that why employers/employees review what policies are available – see what provides the most coverage for the dollar? Why did bc/abortion become something different that required uniform treatment that nothing else did?

katiejane on February 8, 2012 at 10:52 AM

Ed, sorry if this offends, but members of the Roman Catholic church have voted mainly “left” for decades. Catholics bought into the “social gospel” fifty years ago and sadly, this decision is the result. Reference Matthew 6:24 and the parallel passage:

“No servant can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon.” Luke 16:13

Seems that most Catholics have determined they prefer to serve the political left and it’s now coming back to bite them. And it’s going to force them to decide whether or not they believe what they say or whether they are willing to prostitute the faith. I’m not calling anyone names by pointing out an historical fact, but the archbishop who would become known as Pius Xll was the one who signed an agreement with the Third Reich allowing the Church to continue functioning. It won’t surprise me to see a similar deal worked out here.

oldleprechaun on February 8, 2012 at 10:52 AM

A Republican could win Pennsylvania for the first time since Ronald Reagan.

Very minor correction, Ed: Bush Sr. won Penn in 1988. As to the substance of your article, no disagreement from me whatsoever.

jwolf on February 8, 2012 at 10:52 AM

“Our government teaches the whole people by its example. If the government becomes the lawbreaker, it breeds contempt for law; it invites every man to become a law unto himself; it invites anarchy.” — Louis D. Brandeis

J_Crater on February 8, 2012 at 10:53 AM

Reminds of the National Organization of Women contorting itself to say Dollar Bill Clintons picadillos were ok by them.

Deafdog on February 8, 2012 at 10:53 AM

Then they came for the Catholics,
and I didn’t speak out because I was Protestant.

Lost in Jersey on February 8, 2012 at 10:51 AM

A. See:

Looks like Evangelicals are the best hope for the Catholic Church.

http://publicreligion.org/site/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/BC-Employers-Religion1.png

mankai on February 8, 2012 at 10:51 AM

You’re welcome.

B. In light of the Ustaše and where Jewish ghettos and the wearing of yellow markers started… this is a particularly bad analogy.

mankai on February 8, 2012 at 10:54 AM

We need to change their call letters to the word hamr got the hammer for! Instead of A C L U…call them… the F**K U 2!

KOOLAID2 on February 8, 2012 at 10:55 AM

The American Civil Liberty Union announced today that President Obama’s decision to mandate coverage for birth control does not violate religious liberty.

Someone at the ACLU can say that with a straight face?

JetBoy on February 8, 2012 at 10:55 AM

The Catholic Church in the US needs to study the example of the Church in Cuba. El jefe maximo allows the Church to exist, so long as it sticks to holding Mass and does nothing to question the dictatorship of the proletariat.

US Catholics just need to accept the new reality that state trumps church here now. Obama will permit Catholics to believe whatever they want in private, so long as they do not attempt to practice it. The constitutional doctrine of separation of church and state must be upheld, after all.

/sarcasm

//not Catholic

MidniteRambler on February 8, 2012 at 10:57 AM

The ACLU (Anti-Christian Liberties Union) has just shown their idiocy again. This organization is straight out of the pits of hell in my view.

jfs756 on February 8, 2012 at 10:29 AM

How do we get them back…to where they belong?

KOOLAID2 on February 8, 2012 at 10:58 AM

Ah, once again, a teachable moment for those of you who don’t understand the difference between libertarians and conservatives. Here we have a libertarian group (albeit a liberal one) ignoring natural law (i.e. that with which we were “endowed by our creator”) in favor of their interpretation of the Constitution.

Knott Buyinit on February 8, 2012 at 11:00 AM

as a professional courtesy, the shark stepped aside and let them pass…

Dannyp8262 on February 8, 2012 at 11:00 AM

Er, who is imposing their beliefs on whom? Catholic employers don’t tell employees — either in church or in hospitals, clinics, or charities — that the use of contraception will end their employment.

When the progressives created the “work benefits” solution mid century, they changed the meaning of the term ” a job”.

Now benefits “are” the job and they cannot be unwoven. So if you threaten the benefit…you threaten the job.

See how the progressives work?

katy on February 8, 2012 at 11:02 AM

Political backpedalling isn’t evidence of a Constitutional issue. If the RCC is politicking for a broader exemption then that’s the way DC works, especially in an election year.

OptionsTrader on February 8, 2012 at 10:50 AM

I would offer you a dollar to go buy yourself a clue. But at that rate and given your level of cluelessness on this issue, I couldn’t afford it.

The basic consitutional issue here is that the government is trying force the Catholic Church to purchase a product that is fundamentally against their religious beliefs. As I pointed out on other threads to you, the Church’s right to practice their religious beliefs can only be overturned by an appeal to another competing constitutional right. Since there is no constitutional right to have someone else pay for your contraceptions and your abortions, you have nothing.

PackerBronco on February 8, 2012 at 11:03 AM

Catholics put him in office and helped to pass Obamacare … call it Catholic Karma.

Karmi on February 8, 2012 at 11:04 AM

The ACLU does some good work…

Just as you’d expect from a Trotsky-esque front group holding on to their big lie.

Ragspierre on February 8, 2012 at 11:05 AM

The ACLU (Anti-Christian Liberties Union) has just shown their idiocy again. This organization is straight out of the pits of hell in my view.

jfs756 on February 8, 2012 at 10:29 AM

How do we get them back…to where they belong?

KOOLAID2 on February 8, 2012 at 10:58 AM

Maybe it’s lack of sleep and/or too much coffee, but I just had a mental image of the Geico pig doing the street luge right back into the flaming pit. Wee, wee, wee – all the way home…

affenhauer on February 8, 2012 at 11:06 AM

This seems to be an issue that has united conservatives. I’ve been quite discouraged lately reading the comments posted to HA articles. There seems to be a streak of religious bigotry a mile wide running through some of the anti-Romney posts. It is heartening to see that Christians of all denominations can see this action for what it truly is: A threat to constitutional guarantees of religious liberty.

Thank God we can all come together to oppose oppression, even if we aren’t personally affected. Even many who actually disagree with the Catholic Church on the issue of contraception see the threat here and have joined the battle. Thank God.

rogaineguy on February 8, 2012 at 11:07 AM

If the Catholic Church had walked in to a convenience store and murdered the cashier in a failed robbery attempt, then the ACLU would have their back.

ironbill on February 8, 2012 at 11:07 AM

First the Catholic church, then who knows what. This is nothng more than Obama’s War on the Church.

This sums it up: http://themorningspew.com/2012/02/07/obamas-war-on-the-church/

bloggless on February 8, 2012 at 11:11 AM

As I pointed out on other threads to you, the Church’s right to practice their religious beliefs can only be overturned by an appeal to another competing constitutional right. Since there is no constitutional right to have someone else pay for your contraceptions and your abortions, you have nothing.

PackerBronco on February 8, 2012 at 11:03 AM

The 1st Amendment protections for religious belief doesn’t extend to all corporate operations. If a religious believer wants to operate hospitals and universities it has to abide by secular laws.

OptionsTrader on February 8, 2012 at 11:11 AM

One out of every 472 cases they take, they’re on the right side. Cut ‘em some slack.

/

mankai on February 8, 2012 at 11:11 AM

So according to the ACLU dolt, I can walk into a Mosque, eating a pork sandwhich, while saying a Hail Mary… and they cannot do anything because they would force their religion on me???

It’s one thing to be on the wrong side of an issue – a whole different ball of wax to be an idiot on the wrong side of an issue.

Odie1941 on February 8, 2012 at 10:51 AM

Actually, what they really mean is that the government can force the mosque’s Iman to provide your pork sandwiches and Hail Mary prayer cards. If he doesn’t he is “forcing his beliefs on you”.

If you don’t eat you will wither and die, and if you don’t pray your soul will wither and die, so it’s healthcare, right?

Lily on February 8, 2012 at 11:13 AM

mankai on February 8, 2012 at 10:54 AM

A. I am Evangelical but you’re too quick to even consider that was a possibility.

This has been presented by the media as Catholics against the government when it is clearly an affront to all religious freedom. You’ve let yourself be fooled into viewing Catholics as hypocrites who deserve what they get. Niemöller’s warning was specifically not to let that happen, even if it was a group of radicalized Catholic fascists who started the persecution.

Thanks for missing the entire point though.

Lost in Jersey on February 8, 2012 at 11:13 AM

However, Catholics are not, by and large, social conservatives. Obama won the Catholic vote by nine points in 2008 (54 percent to 45 percent). Catholics accounted for a whopping 27 percent of the 2008 electorate. – Ed

Perhaps an interesting study and poll re: those who are post Vatican II “catholics” and Traditional Roman Catholics who know where to attend a Church that still celebrates the Tridentine Mass would be illuminating.
BTW – New Age Catholicism = Liberation Theology.
Check out any “Newman Center”.
That might help explain why so many “catholics” are liberals.

~(Ä)~

Karl Magnus on February 8, 2012 at 11:14 AM

Catholics put him in office and helped to pass Obamacare … call it Catholic Karma.

Karmi on February 8, 2012 at 11:04 AM

Not this Catholic…

JetBoy on February 8, 2012 at 11:17 AM

For many years, conservatives have considered the ACLU just another left-wing activist organization, cloaked in only the veneer of civil liberties.

Speak for yourself, Mr. Morrissey. For many years I have regarded the members of the ACLU as enemies of my country. The only thing that keeps me from treating them as such is the laws of this nation that they so clearly regard with destructive contempt.

M240H on February 8, 2012 at 11:18 AM

Seems that most Catholics have determined they prefer to serve the political left and it’s now coming back to bite them. And it’s going to force them to decide whether or not they believe what they say or whether they are willing to prostitute the faith. I’m not calling anyone names by pointing out an historical fact, but the archbishop who would become known as Pius Xll was the one who signed an agreement with the Third Reich allowing the Church to continue functioning. It won’t surprise me to see a similar deal worked out here.

oldleprechaun on February 8, 2012 at 10:52 AM

I recently heard on the radio, something I’d only previously heard stated by an Irish, Catholic friend from the Boston area. Most Catholics consider themselves Democrats first, because they don’t get paid to go to Mass, but they do get paid to vote.

That pretty much applied to the part of West Virginia that was my childhood home. It wasn’t so much the church, but the United Mine Workers. They paid for votes, and also “paid back” anyone publicly denouncing Democrats.

The biggest problem with this whole deal is that unless it gets reported truthfully, to most of the country it never happened.

TugboatPhil on February 8, 2012 at 11:20 AM

The 1st Amendment protections for religious belief doesn’t extend to all corporate operations. If a religious believer wants to operate hospitals and universities it has to abide by secular laws.

OptionsTrader on February 8, 2012 at 11:11 AM

Sigh. Here we go again. Your sole argument is that the Church has to obey secular laws. Yes, that’s true; but only to the extent that such laws are consititutional WHICH IS WHAT THIS WHOLE ARGUMENT IS ABOUT.

So go for it Sport. Give us the consitutional argument that anyone has a constitutional right to force another person to pay for their contraceptions and abortions. I’d love to hear that rationale.

PackerBronco on February 8, 2012 at 11:20 AM

Their true colors show even in their haste to issue a statement of support. The ACLU is more interested in supporting those “human rights” – the same kinds of entitlements that Justice Ginsburg likes in her preferred constitutions – than those old-fashioned civil liberties.

Drained Brain on February 8, 2012 at 11:22 AM

Gary Johnson hardest hit.

MeatHeadinCA on February 8, 2012 at 11:26 AM

rogaineguy on February 8, 2012 at 11:07 AM

Yes.

I’m not Catholic, I am not deeply religious, and I disagree with many of the Catholic Church’s beliefs, but the left’s attempts to trample religious faith through government fiat are deeply troubling.

A Jewish, atheist, or Southern Baptist business owner who has no problem with 0bama dictating to the Cathlolic Church is not thinking this through. If 0bama establishes the precedent that the state can meddle in Catholic charities, that makes meddling with private property owners that much easier to justify.

We must all hang together, or we will surely all hang separately.

MidniteRambler on February 8, 2012 at 11:27 AM

If we get mandated killing of babies, then mandated euthanasia is right around the corner for our seniors. The death panels will be working overtime.

buckeyerich on February 8, 2012 at 11:27 AM

Time to call a Catholic FATWA against the ACLU.

timberline on February 8, 2012 at 11:27 AM

The 1st Amendment protections for religious belief doesn’t extend to all corporate operations. If a religious believer wants to operate hospitals and universities it has to abide by secular laws.

OptionsTrader on February 8, 2012 at 11:11 AM

Sorry, my understanding is that laws are subordinate to the Constitution and its amendments. Where they intersect and conflict, the law loses.

Try again.

BuckeyeSam on February 8, 2012 at 11:30 AM

You bastards haven’t bought me a car. You’re interfering with my right to travel freely.

morganfrost on February 8, 2012 at 11:31 AM

There are a large number of people here including the ACLU who CLEARLY do NOT understand separation of chucrh and state according to the Constitution OR USSC rulings.

The very fact that Federal government is mandating forcing others to pay for their contraception and abortions is a violation of Constitutional rights IMO. It’s difficult to argue abortion rights as the USSC has already declared that legal. My supposition is that Obama is doing this so that we may re-visit Roe V Wade through PCAPA.

It wasn’t enough that it became a right to murder the unborn. Now the argument is that everyone is required to be complicit in the act.

This is why the Founding Fathers used a Constitutional Republic as the framework for this once formerly great country. We have reduced it to mob rule aka Democracy.

DevilsPrinciple on February 8, 2012 at 11:31 AM

***

We must all hang together, or we will surely all hang separately.

MidniteRambler on February 8, 2012 at 11:27 AM

Exactly.

BuckeyeSam on February 8, 2012 at 11:31 AM

The church needs to relearn a lesson.

Lay with the devil and you get the devil’s due or at least he gets his due.

The church wholeheartedly approved the seed of the hammer and sickle, authoritarian Obamacare.

Now they’re outraged the President is authoritarian?

Maybe the freedom party is a better choice.

Speakup on February 8, 2012 at 11:32 AM

Unions: no right to chose.
Makes sense? Not so much!

gullxn on February 8, 2012 at 10:33 AM

you have a right not to join a union shop dont you?

svs22422 on February 8, 2012 at 11:33 AM

So go for it Sport. Give us the consitutional argument that anyone has a constitutional right to force another person to pay for their contraceptions and abortions. I’d love to hear that rationale.

PackerBronco on February 8, 2012 at 11:20 AM

The RCC doesn’t get an exemption because of their belief about contraception anymore than Scientologists get to opt out of antidepressents. ObamaCare will hopefully be overturned because the individual mandate (along with other aspects of the law) is unConstitutional regardless of which religious belief an individual holds.

OptionsTrader on February 8, 2012 at 11:33 AM

Time to call a Catholic FATWA against the ACLU.

timberline on February 8, 2012 at 11:27 AM

Why? It was Obama’s brilliant idea.

MeatHeadinCA on February 8, 2012 at 11:33 AM

If a religious believer wants to operate hospitals and universities it has to abide by secular laws.

But secular law cannot compel that a religious believer act against conscience, dope.

That is the thrust of the First Amendment on the issue of religion.

This isn’t a close question. If you knew jack-spit about history, you’d see that. Even in times of extreme national emergency, we have carved out a conscientious objector status to protect people.

Ragspierre on February 8, 2012 at 11:34 AM

If someone can’t afford birth control they can skip right over to the already federally funded local Planned Parenthood and get it cheap, free, whatever

Or even better… they can stop having sex!

crazy_legs on February 8, 2012 at 11:34 AM

I want to know when contraception somehow evolved into “critical health care”.

Looking back, I can’t remember ever having a single job where this “critical health care” was provided to me free as part of my insurance package. But I never worked for a religious institution or had a 6 figure salary.

Oxymoron on February 8, 2012 at 11:34 AM

It is important to point out that the jug-eared idiot’s administration does not make this distinction when demanding that contraceptives are a right. Obama and HHS simply say that religious institutions must provide birth control without any reference to the idea that government funding has to be present to make it mandatory. The opt out would be to not offer health coverage at all for employees.

Happy Nomad on February 8, 2012 at 10:38 AM

Unfortunately, by opting out of health coverage, the Catholic institutions will be subject to heavy fines just for standing up for their religious principles. I really hope Obama doesn’t give in until November. By this time, most Catholics, heritics or not, will rally around this cause and dump this jugeared bum back into the gutter where he belongs. Let him go back to Chicago and be an activist in the ghetto from which he came.

timberline on February 8, 2012 at 11:34 AM

My employer paid health plan does not cover Laser eye surgery. I believe the government should mandate coverage of all laser eye surgery because I dont feel that my employer should be able to dictate their biased preference for corrective lenses. I demand my right of freedom from glasses and contacts!!!

AverageJoe on February 8, 2012 at 11:35 AM

The RCC doesn’t get an exemption because of their belief about contraception anymore than Scientologists get to opt out of antidepressents.

You’re right. Neither religious organization should be forced to cover something that is against their religious beliefs.

MeatHeadinCA on February 8, 2012 at 11:36 AM

What am I missing here? If someone can’t afford birth control they can skip right over to the already federally funded local Planned Parenthood and get it cheap, free, whatever. There is no need to mandate any insurance cover it for free, much less the Catholic Church.

ctmom on February 8, 2012 at 10:43 AM

To expand from Kathleen Parker’s article. It’s not just expecting the Catholic church to condone adultery. It’s expecting them to pay for the hotel room. This is wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong. If you want contraception covered by your insurance, work for a non-Catholic employer. If you want to work for a Catholic employer, pay for your own contraceptiion or go to a clinic.

An additional huge false premise that is creeping into the liberal viewpoint is that people are not capable of doing something is personal as obtaining their own birth control. The state (via an insurance mandate) must do it for them.

If the people give in on this issue-will we next be required to pay for euthanizing the elderly?

talkingpoints on February 8, 2012 at 11:38 AM

It will be interesting to see how the Hispanic Catholic’s respond to this issue. A very devout culture, they voted for my president in droves last time. Since then Hispanic unemployment and poverty have increased. Now this? New Mexico my swing back into the Republican camp.

DumboTheAvenger on February 8, 2012 at 11:38 AM

Or even better… they can stop having sex!

crazy_legs on February 8, 2012 at 11:34 AM

Amen, brother. Sex is not required to stay alive. It is not a disease. It is an option to living. By indulging, one needs to be responsible for the consequences. Like I always say: Fro every responsibility there is a privilege, and for every privilege there is a responsibility. If you take the privilege, you must take the responsibility.

timberline on February 8, 2012 at 11:39 AM

So what “critical health care” issue is denied when employers refuse to provide insurance coverage for birth control?

KimS on February 8, 2012 at 10:48 AM

Yes, indeed. And aren’t birth control pharms being sued big time right now for the side effects of their pills and inserts? Don’t we listen to 30 seconds of disclaimers in every ad for birth control methods?

It’s rather like punching a hole into the head of a 8 month baby still in the womb—supposedly for the “health” of the mother. Really? Since when and in what circumstances is it a safe thing to give birth to a dead baby?

There’s a war on Christianity and a war against Jews in Israel. This administration thinks sharia law is swell, but Catholics who protect life can just suck it up?

Thank you Newt for bringing this war on Relgion into the debate and I do believe either Santorum and Gingrich will fight to protect religious freedom and liberty and tradition.

Portia46 on February 8, 2012 at 11:39 AM

Ah, once again, a teachable moment for those of you who don’t understand the difference between libertarians and conservatives. Here we have a libertarian group (albeit a liberal one) ignoring natural law (i.e. that with which we were “endowed by our creator”) in favor of their interpretation of the Constitution.

Knott Buyinit on February 8, 2012 at 11:00 AM

The ACLU is not a libertarian organization (although they do play one on TV). Libertarians believe in “negative liberty” (i.e. you have the right to be free of government interference). The ACLU and the rest of the left believe in “positive liberty” (i.e. you have the right to have the government force other people to provide you with certain benefits). Also, IIRC, the ACLU has repeatedly refused to defend 2nd Amendment rights, which tips their communist hand.

sadarj on February 8, 2012 at 11:40 AM

Time to call a Catholic FATWA against the ACLU.

timberline on February 8, 2012 at 11:27 AM

Why? It was Obama’s brilliant idea.

MeatHeadinCA on February 8, 2012 at 11:33 AM

It’s easier to pick on the ACLU. Threatening THE ONE is not only treason punishable by death, it is also a mortal sin. I know because Obama told me so, and I must obey.

timberline on February 8, 2012 at 11:43 AM

The RCC doesn’t get an exemption because of their belief about contraception anymore than Scientologists get to opt out of antidepressents. ObamaCare will hopefully be overturned because the individual mandate (along with other aspects of the law) is unConstitutional regardless of which religious belief an individual holds.

OptionsTrader on February 8, 2012 at 11:33 AM

I ran your response through the semantic analyzer and it can out as: “The Church has to obey the law.”

In other words, youre just repeating yourself. You have nothing.

PackerBronco on February 8, 2012 at 11:46 AM

It’s easier to pick on the ACLU. Threatening THE ONE is not only treason punishable by death, it is also a mortal sin. I know because Obama told me so, and I must obey.

timberline on February 8, 2012 at 11:43 AM

Well, I didn’t know we were proposing violence.

At any rate, this whole RCC thing is just further proof of the claim that many on the right have been making. Obama is not for protecting individual/religious rights. Now will the majority of Catholics wake up? Nope.

MeatHeadinCA on February 8, 2012 at 11:47 AM

What if my Muslim employer won’t pay for my bacon and beer? Is it religious discrimination if he makes me use my own money to buy those things?

CJ on February 8, 2012 at 11:50 AM

You’re right. Neither religious organization should be forced to cover something that is against their religious beliefs.

MeatHeadinCA on February 8, 2012 at 11:36 AM

Are there any laws which that logic doesn’t apply to? Since the 1st Amendment applies to individual belief and not church organizations, it is any business owner who would be able to invoke religious objections when choosing not to comply with a law.

OptionsTrader on February 8, 2012 at 11:50 AM

It’s too late for Obama to backpeddle. This is a dictatorial overreach which has already happened. It’s out there, like a poot in an elevator. One can’t attack something as fundamental to our culture as religious freedom and then treat that attack like it was merely a trial balloon. It speaks to the mindset of the one who did it, and makes a statement which can’t be taken back.

Murf76 on February 8, 2012 at 11:54 AM

If the people give in on this issue-will we next be required to pay for euthanizing the elderly?

talkingpoints on February 8, 2012 at 11:38 AM

Yeah, but it will be a two-for-one when you pay for me. I’ll be 71 pretty soon, so I’m preparing for this. When I go, I’m taking the euthanizer with me.

Yoop on February 8, 2012 at 11:55 AM

You bastards haven’t bought me a car. You’re interfering with my right to travel freely.

morganfrost on February 8, 2012 at 11:31 AM

That’s what the high-speed rail is all about…

affenhauer on February 8, 2012 at 11:57 AM

Are there any laws which that logic doesn’t apply to? Since the 1st Amendment applies to individual belief and not church organizations, it is any business owner who would be able to invoke religious objections when choosing not to comply with a law.

OptionsTrader on February 8, 2012 at 11:50 AM

Now we’re getting somewhere.

But still, if I want to take your approach, which is to look at the law and precedents set and ignore the text of the Constitution, I would conclude that SCOTUS would be able to distinguish between the Catholic Church and an unaligned Pastafarian.

MeatHeadinCA on February 8, 2012 at 11:57 AM

Since the 1st Amendment applies to individual belief and not church organizations, it is any business owner who would be able to invoke religious objections when choosing not to comply with a law.

What authority do you use for that proposition?

Ragspierre on February 8, 2012 at 11:58 AM

Dictating to Catholics that they have to fund contraception for their employees when our religion specifically prohibits it — including the use of abortifacients, which is equivalent to killing children in our faith — is prohibiting the free exercise of a core doctrine for Catholics (and many other Christian denominations as well), which is to defend the sanctity of human life.

Very strong work, Edward…++

ted c on February 8, 2012 at 11:59 AM

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