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Posts Tagged ‘nationalized health care’

What’s wrong with being a woman?  A woman who is pro-woman no matter our differences?  A woman who doesn’t have to compete with or “one up” a man?  Who appreciates her noble and irreplaceable role?  Who understands that men need women to help them be better men?  Who knows how to build up rather than tear down?  Who does not feel demeaned by the titles of “Mrs., “Mother,” or “Grandmother?”

What’s wrong with being a woman who thinks conservatively?  Who isn’t impressed or foolishly flattered by utopian ideas?  Who keeps herself informed and engages in dialogue?  Who isn’t ashamed to live her life, face each circumstance, and treat other people in ways that flow from her Christian faith – the only worldview that gives her hope?

What’s wrong with being a woman who has never celebrated legalized abortion?  Who doesn’t believe that a woman’s rights are greater than a child’s?  Who recognizes that abortion has only devalued every other human life?  Who agrees with Mary Harnard, staff counsel at Americans United for Life, that abortion is “anti-woman?”  (You can read her article at http://www.aul.org/2012/03/the-anti-woman-world-of-roe/print/ )

What’s wrong with being a woman who doesn’t agree with the worldview, business, and strong-arming tactics of Planned Parenthood?  Who doesn’t want to fund with her tax-dollars an organization that sexualizes girls and then stands ready as the largest profiteering-provider of abortions in the nation?  Who doesn’t appreciate the fact that PP (who does not give mammograms but does mammography referrals) would assault Susan G. Komen when they determined that PP doesn’t really have anything to do with fighting breast cancer and so decided not to grant them 1% ($680,000) of their annual grants?  What’s wrong with being a woman who questions why the $1 billion-in-revenue-monolith PP, in collaboration with Moveon.org, would become so “vile and vicious” against Komen and its donors?  (“The Abortion Empire Strikes Back,” an interview with Komen’s former senior vice president Karen Handel, WORLD, March 24, 2012)

What’s wrong with being a woman who believes that human life is the greatest natural resource of any thriving nation?  Who believes every human life is created by God?  Who finds something perverse in a national health care plan that sees human life as a debit entry on a balance sheet?  Who wonders why Kathleen Sebelius would want to be the “secretary of human prevention” or insist that “poor” and “mostly black and brown” women receive free contraception and abortion-causing drugs?  (Do I hear the whisper of eugenics?)

What’s wrong with being a woman who dares to ask: Why are so many women “anti-woman?”  More girl babies than boy babies are aborted around the world.  Girls mentored to be sexually-free are seldom told their female anatomy is more susceptible to bacteria and infections.  Girls assured that abortion is a “right” are rarely asked if they’d like to listen to the heartbeat of their unborn child or watch that baby on the ultrasound screen.  Young women told that children inconvenience relationships, careers, and success too often become older women longing for the sounds of grandchildren.

Why are so many women “anti-woman?”  Why do they find little value in teaching their daughters the skills for making a home… a nest for husband and children?  Why do they give them license to unrestrained emotions?  Dress them to be temptresses?  Make them physically, psychologically, and spiritually more vulnerable?

Is the National Organization of Women (NOW) pro or anti-woman?  Are women’s studies classes on university campuses pro or anti-women?  Are Congresswomen and women justices on the Supreme Court pro or anti-women?  When Elisabeth Hasselbeck, Dana Perino, Sarah Palin, Michele Bachman, S.E. Cupp, Laura Ingraham, Condoleezza Rice, Michelle Malkin, and other conservative-thinking women are called all manner of hateful names by Keith Olbermann, Ed Schultz, Bill Maher and other crude un-gentlemen, do liberal-thinking women come to the defense of their sisters?

Why are so many women anti-woman?  What’s wrong with being a woman who is o.k. with being a woman?  Who doesn’t doubt her value?   Who can  re-adjust plans to welcome an “unexpected” child?   Who delights in making a home no matter the size of the house?  Who speaks well of good men?

Women who believe in the vitality and hopefulness of being a wife, mother, grandmother, and encourager of all that is female are just exactly what this country needs.

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Pliny the Younger was a provincial governor in the Roman Empire.  He asked Emperor Trajan if he should execute Christians who refused to burn incense in worship of the emperor.  “Pliny, in keeping with the customs of the empire,” writes Wesley J. Smith, “didn’t care about forcing Christians to believe that the emperor was a god.  But, in public, they had to behave as if they did.”  It wasn’t that Christians were targeted for their faith, but over their refusal to declare themselves part of the reigning social order. 

Smith, in writing his article “Free Birth Control vs. Freedom of Religion,” said he thought of Pliny when reading about the specific rules being created to implement nationalized health care.  Some of these rules seriously conflict with Christian faith and conscience.  Under nationalized health care, religious organizations will be required to provide insurance coverage for practices they believe to be morally wrong.  The “free-birth-control” rule will require all employers (with a very narrow exception) to offer their employees health insurance that provides FDA-approved contraception, female sterilization, and other “reproductive” services – free of charge.  It will not matter if the employer is a religious organization and will violate its doctrine by providing the insurance.  With such a rule, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is imposing a legal duty on faith organizations.  What is that duty?  To comply with the values of the state whenever engaging in public action or charitable enterprise among the general society.

But, what about “freedom of religion?”  More and more, U.S. officials refer to “freedom of worship” rather than “freedom of religion.”  They are not the same thing.  The former means an individual is free to believe whatever he wants and worship privately without interference.  The latter means an individual is free to express their core faith out in society even if not endorsed by the state.  Freedom of religion, as defined by the Founding Fathers, allows Christians to maintain a Christian school, hospital, or inner-city mission – true to Biblical teaching and practice — where the general public is served.   Freedom of worship would not allow that.

The specific rules of nationalized health care, as directed by HHS, knowingly force religious organizations to pay for medical services to which they are theologically opposed.  These rules represent a frontal assault on freedom of religion at an institutional level.  This is not a trivial matter.  “To date,” writes Wesley J. Smith, “public controversies over ‘conscience’ in health care have mostly involved individuals – e.g. doctors, nurses, pharmacists – whose personal morality or religious conviction conflicted with the provision of certain medical procedures or substances.”

But, explains Smith, “the free-birth-control rule goes much further than creating a potential conflict between the general law and individual religious beliefs.  Rather, the rule targets the right of religious organizations to conduct their public activities consistently with their religious dogma and moral values – except within the narrow confines of an actual church, synagogue, mosque, temple, or monastery.”  How narrow might this be?  “The group health insurance covering nuns in a Catholic religious order,” writes Smith, “would probably not have to cover contraception.  But insurance provided by the same order’s elementary school probably would.  Ditto a hospital established by the nuns.”

“Despite much screaming from opponents,” Smith explains, HHS “has refused to broaden the religious exemption in the final rule — forcing religiously founded organizations to violate their parent church’s teachings, a frontal assault on the freedom of faiths to operate institutional outreach organizations consistent with their beliefs.  If this rule stands, it won’t end there.  If Catholic organizations can be compelled by federal diktat to violate their religious tenets, so can other religious organizations in different contexts.”  According to HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, even if a religious employer does not cover contraceptive services, they are to tell where such services can be obtained.  “Thus,” observes Smith, “the Obama administration is attacking even freedom of worship by forcing exempt organizations to tell their employees where and how they can violate church teachings.”

“This birth-control rule,” concludes Smith, “is the latest and most egregious example of government forcing religious organizations to conform their operations to reigning secular moral values.  In this sense, faith organizations are being compelled to participate in a metaphorical Caesar worship.  As in the Roman Empire, the government will allow religious organizations general freedom of worship, but, increasingly, not freedom of religion.  Pliny would approve.”

Wesley J. Smith is a senior fellow
at the Discovery Institute’s Center on Human Exceptionalism
and a consultant
for the Patient Rights Council and the Center for Bioethics and Culture.

To read Wesley J. Smith’s article, please visit National Review.  

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