The New York Times takes issue with those opposed to the HHS Mandate on religious grounds:
Catholic bishops, leading Republicans and other social conservatives persist in portraying the Obama administration’s new rule requiring employer health plans to cover birth control without a co-pay as an assault on religious freedom.’
But the real departure from the Constitution is their specious claim to a right to impose their religious views on millions of Americans who do not share them. Virtually all American women, including Catholic women, use contraceptives sometime in their lives. In essence, the bishops and their allies are arguing that they are above the law and their beliefs should be elevated over pressing societal interests.
Religious freedom is itself “above the law” in that it is a God-given right. This God-given right is protected by the First Amendment of the Constitution. It was put into the First Amendment in the first place by men who believed religious freedom is “above the law” of man in that it is inherent in the “Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God” mentioned in the Declaration of Independence. This principle is “above the law” and it is a principle that extends to all churches, including the Catholic Church.
The NYTimes argument, “virtually all American women” is an argument that “majority rule” trumps the God-given rights of churches. In effect, the NYTimes, and the President of the United States, are claiming that if enough people agree to violating the First Amendment, then the First Amendment becomes completely irrelevant. “Virtually all women” thinking the Catholic Church should pay for their contraception is not reason to throw out the First Amendment.
This is why Barack Obama and his comrades are called “Democrats,” I suppose. “Democracy” matters in that public opinion is trumps God-given rights, in their view. A “Republican,” on the other hand, believes in a “republic” which is government that is limited in the sense that representatives of the people deliberate and decide what our laws should be. In America, the representatives themselves are limited by our founding principles which are delineated as basic rights so that the rights of all may be protected, whether or not they are in the majority. The protection comes from God and those who work to extend His desire for protection, not from CNN polling.
The new rule requires Catholics to pay for sin. We can’t do that, and the Constitution is there to protect us in this regard. It is the President and his apologists on the Left who believe themselves to be “above the law” which is God’s law, that we have the right to spend our money in accordance with our own conscience and not be forced to spend our money on things that violate our conscience.
Many will say, in defense of the Catholic Church, that this issue is not only about contraception. I agree, but would say that is about more, even, than religious freedom. It’s about the Democratic Party believing that the Church has no sovereignty over her own property. They believe that if a majority of people believe that the Church’s property (her money) should be directed in a manner the Church doesn’t wish it to be directed, then it is the Church that is being unreasonable.
Make no mistake, if the President and his compatriots on the Left are so audacious as to believe the government can force the Catholic Church to use her property the way they say it should be used, then certainly they are audacious enough to take property from anyone else and redistribute it as they see fit.
God help them.