“The chinaman is not the issue here, Dude! This is about drawing a line in the sand, over which you do not . . . Besides, Dude, ‘chinaman’ is not the preferred nomenclature. ‘Asian-American,’ please.” ~ Walter Sobchak, from The Big Lebowski
While this may be old news now, and a much ink has already been spilt over it, the Obama administration certainly crossed a line with the HHS mandate dictating that Catholic institutions provide health insurance covering contraceptives, in blatant defiance of both 2000 years of Catholic moral teaching and the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, which guarantees Americans the right to free practice of religion. In doing so, he pissed off not only the U.S. Bishops and various orthodox Catholic institutions (including schools such as Christendom College, the University of Dallas, and Franciscan University at Steubenville ) whose administrators would be forced to violate their consciences by this mandate, but also many non-Catholic persons concerned with religious liberty in this country, even if they do not agree with the Church’s teachings regarding contraception.
I must say it is indeed heartening to finally see the U.S. Bishops take such a vocal and united stand for their Faith on such a politically-incorrect issue, and stand firm, even after Obama’s phony “compromise” stating that women will be guaranteed “free” contraceptive coverage (asking us to ignore the truism that there is no such thing as a free lunch) Good may yet come of this latest Obamanation, as I’ve heard that people are starting to hear sermons from the pulpit on contraception for the first time in response to this mandate.
While Obama has indeed crossed a line with this mandate, the mandate also draws a line which separates the sheep from the goats regarding how various self-proclaimed Catholics respond to this assault on religious liberties. This act of unprovoked aggression against the Catholic Faith from the Obama administration makes Obama’s stance painfully clear, and makes it that much harder to claim that Obama is actually a friend of Catholicism trying to do what is best. But sadly, with the exception of the U.S. Bishops, response to this issue seems to largely fall on predictable ideological lines, including among Catholics. While conservatives (who, obviously, are not fans of Obama to begin with) oppose this mandate as the assault on religious liberty that it is, “liberal” “Catholics” for the most part obediently and faithfully fall into line behind their Dear Leader. (I put “liberal” in quotes here as well as “Catholic,” for the socialistic statism embraced by the modern Left has very little to do with liberalism in the classical sense.)
Almost from day one, lefty “Catholic” scribblers such as Commonweal’s Eric Bugyis jumped to defend the State against their Church, praising the wisdom of Obama, while with supreme (yet apparently unintentional) irony, furiously excoriating the Bishops for claiming the “right to coerce” over that of “individual conscience.” And, of course, the mannish pant-suit “social justice” nuns, like the Catholic Health Association’s Sister Carol Keehan, and other such creatures, are showering praise on Dear Leader’s wisdom in his oh-so-gracious “accommodation” to his Catholic subjects. But from those who already consistently defend and praise the most pro-abortion president in American history while shamelessly touting their “Catholicity,” such behavior should hardly come as a shock.
In the early years of the Church, Christians would be devoured by lions rather than burn incense to Caesar. Today, many “Catholics” are all too willing to sacrifice their Christian moral principles on the altar of the Almighty State.
(To be continued . . .)