The president recently told 3,000 attendees at the National Prayer Breakfast, “We know that part of living in a pluralistic society means that our personal religious beliefs alone can’t dictate our response to every challenge we face.”
This is the same president who is behind an effort to force religious institutions to provide contraceptive coverage in healthcare benefits to employees, even when those benefits contradict the fundamental teachings of the Church with which the institution is associated. So when the president says, “But in my moments of prayer, I’m reminded that faith and values play an enormous role in motivating us to solve some of our most urgent problems,” he is ascribing prayer his motivation to step on the face of Catholics and people of other faiths.
While Catholics have been vocal about this, Obama’s theologian, White House press secretary Jay Carney, has chosen to drive the nail even further into the crucifixion of Catholic moral teaching by allegedly telling a White House press corps, “I understand that there have been objections and that some people disagree with us and we are going to work with institutions that have concerns here. . . . But I think it’s important to note here that we believe these services are important and that American women deserve to have access to that kind of insurance coverage regardless of where they work.”
The sanctimonious Carney, who must be gleeful in his gutter of lies, has consciously chosen to ignore Catholic teaching and natural law theory which are not apart from American cultural and political discussion, but a fundamental part of them. Frankly, when the White House chooses to trample religious freedom, something is tragically wrong, albeit lost on theologian Carney and his boss.
Having said that, it is equally clear that even a stout-hearted Obama-supporting Catholic like Douglas Kmiec is troubled. He says the Obama administration has gone too far. Do statements like this mean we should expect to see a bit of backsliding by the White House and some strong action on the part of the bishops? Hopefully, but indications are not hopeful.
USCCB spokesman Richard Doerflinger has kept his thumb on the pulse of this presidential strong-arming and apparently believes news reports that the Obama administration is considering a religious exemption for employers such as Catholic hospitals and universities. Doerflinger told the Weekly Standard that what is being described as the “Hawaii Compromise” could be worse than what Obama is attempting to shove down Catholic throats right now. Apparently the Hawaii law stipulates that “every religious organization that is eligible for the exemption has to instruct all employees in how they can access all methods of contraception and sterilization locally ‘in an expeditious manner.’”
This is one of those farcical differences without a distinction. Either way the administration would be forcing Church employers to violate Catholic teaching and personal conscience. Let’s face it, it’s like asking a Catholic doctor to sign an agreement that he does not have to kill preborn babies, but he must give expectant mothers a list of abortionists! Complicity is what it is.
As a Catholic pro-life leader who understands Catholic teaching and the meaning of the word infallibility, it bothers me that nobody is talking about the reasons why Catholics cannot be in any way, shape, or form aligned with the dispensation of or coverage of deadly chemicals and devices.
I think it’s time for the Catholic bishops to get moving and threaten to sue Obama right now. Why wait? Why dawdle? Why waste time asking folks to sign petitions or search for information as Cardinal Wuerl has suggested?
I beseech the Catholic bishops: Please lay down the gauntlet. Please get in Obama’s face and vow to fight to the death to preserve Catholic integrity in healthcare and in employment practices.
I ask: Whose dogma will survive the 21st century? It’s time to choose!