Posts Tagged ‘ supreme court decision

ALERT: Hobby Lobby Supreme Court Ruling NOT About Contraception

The New York Times and many others are contributing to the false notion that the recent Supreme Court decision, Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc allows businesses to ban birthheadscratcher control. In the spirit of truth, the Supreme Court ruling in favor of Hobby Lobby is about abortion-causing drugs and devices NOT contraception. To quote page two of the court’s official opinion, “The owners of the businesses have religious objections to abortion, and according to their religious beliefs the four contraceptive methods at issue are abortifacients. If the owners comply with the HHS mandate, they believe they will be facilitating abortions, and if they do not comply they will pay a very heavy price . . . If these consequences do not amount to a substantial burden, it is hard to see what would.” You can read the high court’s opinion in full here.

Hobby Lobby did not say that providing no cost contraception to employees was against their religious convictions. They said providing abortion-causing drugs and devices violate them. Of the 20 FDA approved contraceptives they have no problem with 16 of them because they have not been proven to end the life of a child. It is important to note that the court recognized along with Health and Human Services that the four ‘contraceptives’ in question in fact can and do end the life of an embryo. The court states on page 32, “They [the business owners] therefore object on religious grounds to providing health insurance that covers methods of birth control that, as HHS acknowledges may result in the destruction of an embryo.” Since the owners of Hobby Lobby have a deeply held religious conviction that all human life is valuable and begins at conception they only had a problem with those drugs (e.g. Plan B, Ella) and devices (e.g. IUDs) that end a newly ‘conceived’ life.

Again, this case is not about businesses blocking birth control it is about ham handed bureaucracy forcing companies to violate their deeply held convictions just so a government can implement a political abortion agenda. For expert interpretations see responses by Princeton Law professor Robert George and the Director of the Center for Law and Religious Freedom at the Christian Legal Society, Kim Colby.

A Brief Pause Before Uncorking the Champagne
For all the hoopla out there on the pro-life side touting this decision as a great victory we should be cautious. It should be noted that this decision is monumental if not only for the fact that this is the first time in the history of the abortion problem that it has been directly connected to individual religious liberty. That is, the moral cost of access to health insurance is to pay for everybody’s abortion. To that point there are several sobering factors to consider in this decision before we celebrate the ‘victory.’

  1. The first point to consider before champagne is the 5-4 decision. This was an issue of freedom of religion my friends. The question as to whether or not a person, acting as an We the peopleindividual or as a corporation, can live out their religious beliefs in the public square was narrowly upheld. That is to say it was refuted by four Supreme Court Justices! Remind me again why this country was founded? So let’s say one of the five majority justices retires and is replaced by a justice who sides with the minority…at that moment when one’s religion becomes a public matter at odds with official government policy it comes with criminal penalties (er…taxes).
  2. A second point that we ought to consider to temper our enthusiasm is the sad fact that holding as true a fact confirmed by empirical science could be considered a religious belief if it does not support the secular government position. ‘Human life begins at conception’ is now considered a religious belief simply because it aligns with the Christian worldview, embryology and human genetics notwithstanding. It would be understandable for the court to site as religious the belief that all humans are made in the image of God and therefore ought to enjoy protection under the law at every stage of development from conception to nature death, hence abortion is bad But that was not the point of religious belief the court considered. It happens to be terribly inconvenient to the abortion agenda that science sides with the pro-lifers on this point. And the court, complicit with that agenda per Roe vs Wade, already ruled that a pre-born child is not a person deserving of protection under the law. So now they are stuck with the Solomon-like act of slicing the baby called science between two would be religions, theirs called secularism or Christianity. So does this mean that embryologists who recognize the new organism with human DNA created at fertilization are religious zealots?
  3. The third point is that the abortion industry has gotten not only the government (including Health and Human Services [HHS] and the Supreme Court), but the media, and 1237682_untitledeven many pro-life advocates to call certain types of abortion ‘contraception.’ The word ‘contraception’ is intended to define the use of methods that block conception which apparently in all other species but human takes place at fertilization. The abortion industry prefers to talk about when ‘pregnancy begins’ (they say it is at the time the embryo implants in the uterine wall) while the pro-life population prefers to talk about when the life of a separate and distinct human being starts (fertilization of the egg by the sperm). If contraception is supposed to mean the prevention of pregnancy and a pregnancy is not said to begin until the newly formed life is firmly implanted in the uterine lining (an arbitrary and convenience definition by the way) then drugs and devices that make it impossible for the embryo to implant are benignly called ‘contraceptives.’ If on the other hand life begins at fertilization, as embryology tells us, then that’s when pregnancy begins and those same drugs cannot be considered anything but abortifacients.
  4. A fourth cooling effect the decision should have on us is that it represents a ruling on a detail of an unethical, wrongheaded law (PPACA, aka Obamacare). This amounts to a sub-ruling serving only to further cement what ought to otherwise be repealed. Obamacare represents the takeover of the profession of medicine inserting itself in the place of the patient in the doctor/patient relationship. Now the government decides what ‘good health’ is for you, a member of a population that they manage, rather than you and your doctor. So, since the government has identified a population block called ‘women of child bearing age’ they have mandated that abortion-causing, carcinogenic drugs are good for all women. Individual health care no longer matters despite the rhetoric. It’s the population objective that counts as determined by non-elected rule-makers at the HHS. The same ones who wrote the contraceptive mandates at issue here. Simply Orwellian.

Supreme Court’s Health Care Decision Will Change the Way You Live

Many are asking how the Supreme Court decision announced yesterday June 28th, 2012 upholding the constitutionality of the health care reform act impacts Christians, churches, and pro-life organizations like pregnancy centers. A new religious fanaticism has been born and it is American State government. The following is a list demonstrating how the Affordable Care Act or “Obamacare” is not about healthcare reform but a change in the fundamental philosophy of American government.

-Obamacare compels all Americans to purchase health care

-Obamacare forces all health care plans to pay for sterilization, contraception, and abortion

-Obamacare permits only limited opt out parameters for religious institutions

-Obamacare defines what qualifies as a religious institution

-Obamacare presumes to determine applicable religious belief for individuals which makes the State the final religious and civil authority.

-Obamacare, now ruled constitutional by the Supreme Court, signals a fundamental shift in the philosophy of American Government from that of ‘government by the consent of the governed’ to ‘State over the individual.’

G.K. Chesterton said, “Government has become ungovernable; that is, it cannot leave off governing. Law has become lawless; that is it cannot see where laws should stop. The chief feature of our time is the meekness of the mob and the madness of government.”

However, this letter is not primarily about abortion or contraception or even Obamacare. This is about the future of modern western civilization. What we choose to do here in our time will determine whether a free democratic nation will revive or diminish into a democratic despotism.

Religion is the term used to define ultimate authority. Traditionally religion is the term we use to define those fundamental ideas that provide people with ultimate purpose. Those ideas force the human soul out of its habits of pleasure seeking to think of a higher purpose external to himself, aspiring to a Higher Being whose nature and laws apply to all mankind–equally. These notions of God and how then one should act in light of Him create a context for self-discipline, voluntary self-denial and even sacrifice for a greater good not owing to an all-powerful human being, or set of human beings called a legislature, not even owing to an all-powerful notion of “the majority.”

What has happened in America is that the traditional concept of spiritual religion has been tacitly rejected by government, education, and medicine and replaced with a material one, a religion of the State. This new religion has priests they call scientists and a prophet they call the ‘will of the people.’ The false notion of the separation of the sacred Church and secular State can only serve to create an official Church of State.  This process of creating a religion out of a scientific materialism is buoyed by modern democracy’s singular devotion to that final radical equality of every man’s morality. For when all men are their own moral authority, virtue dies and everyone simply does what is ‘right in his own eyes.’ An exponential increase in lawlessness then occurs to which government responds with more laws and ever tightening control; all to the hearty applause of an apathetic, comfort seeking people who in the end experience an orderly and peaceful brand of slavery.

Only a common and higher belief regarding the nature and purpose of mankind made in the very image of God can afford us a set of moral imperatives driving the virtuous behavior and actions of men and society. It is only that commonly held religious belief in God that creates those necessary and invisible protections afforded every person, for which all men are responsible to secure for each other; life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness. Centralized government is not only ill-equipped to secure those things but finds its survival requires their severe limitation.

What Obamacare represents is a centralized government attempting to secure for itself power and ownership over all peoples. Obamacare represents a usurpation of the role of God under the guise of a father-like benefactor for all the State’s children. Obamacare and the Health and Human Service (HHS) mandates that come along with it represent the last act of a sovereign people yielding to administrative despotism.

Stunningly, the Supreme Court ruled it constitutional signaling the willingness of the judiciary to approve of this fundamental shift in the philosophy of American government. Be warned. Even if Obamacare is overturned legislatively we have only a little more time. Lest you be tempted to think the issue is partisan let me assure you the Republicans have not a better plan only a slower one on the road to an American servile State controlled by either rich conservatives or  insane progressives.

What is needed is a return to the Christianity of our forefathers lest we mirror the tactics of Mao Tse Tung. What is required is a reawakening of the old religion of our great, great, grandparents lest we cease our struggle with Stalinism. What is absolutely essential is a revival of faith born at the foot of the cross of Jesus Christ the emancipator; a renewal of life informed by the Word of truth who alone can set us free from the sin which so easily entangles us. Set free to pursue our true destinies.

Without this reorientation to a vigorous theology our anthropology can be nothing higher than a pleasure seeking, pain reducing, animalistic utility. Without this return to true religion healers become killers, legislators become tyrants, educators become purveyors of sexual perversions, churches become cults of personality, women become men, men become predators, marriage is redefined, whole classes of people are dehumanized, and children become agents of parental self-actualization. Meanwhile the whole nation is kept in perpetual childhood by an omnipotent and omnipresent State, preventing the birth of the future, hindering, restraining, and stultifying all industry, all innovation. And family, where the core values of religious belief are nourished in order to secure a free and stable society, is sacrificed on the altar of the secular State.

So let us be clear, true religion securing true freedom requires the following basic beliefs:

1. All of humanity has fallen into the darkness of sin

2. Without Divine intervention we tend only toward greater inhumanity

3. Jesus Christ is that divine intervention, becoming sin on our behalf and then nailed it to the cross thereby satisfying the wrath of God’s judgment

4. Jesus rose from the dead having defeated sin and death, opening the door of eternal life to those of faith

5. Those who acknowledge their sin and turn from their wickedness, making Christ their King, can become the very righteousness of God and live truly free, freely protecting others from every sort of tyranny

Only one who has been released from the chains of sin is truly free. It is only the believer in Jesus Christ who experiences this freedom and therefore uniquely understands what freedom and free society is. This understanding comes first through faith in God and not government, while he who is faithless is fated to government’s chains. Believers alone are the ones who will always seek to secure the protection and dignity of all people from conception to natural death especially the most vulnerable of society. For it is the true Christian who uniquely understands moral bankruptcy, vulnerability, voicelessness, powerlessness, and the weakness to which many classes of humans are subjected under this gentle barbarism called the Affordable Care Act. For a true Christian recognized his lack of standing and rights as a sinner before a just and holy God. This God also is the One who sent His Son pouring out his riches and rights on our behalf thereby empowering us to do the same for others. Only the Christian and Christian society can make the weak strong and the poor rich by democratizing the royalty of Deity to the soul of any man who would accept it.

Let us recall Chesterton’s words, “The Christian ideal has not been tried and found wanting. It has been found difficult; and left untried.” So be courageous, Christian, destroying the young tyrannies, giving up our lives that we might find them, taking up our cross, dying to ourselves and defying this despotism through faith in the one true God. As Jesus says in Mark 8:35 “For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it.”