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Letters to the Editor

Financial expression

March 7, 2012

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To the editor:

Freedom of religion is not just freedom of worship. It is also the freedom to express that religion. The most common way we have of expressing ourselves is how we spend our money. We vote up or down on businesses based on our patronage. We vote up or down on politicians with our donations. We vote up or down on the charities we support with our donations.

The HHS mandate is not about contraception; it is about freedom. When an entity, such as the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas, is self-insured, the funds to provide that insurance come from its own coffers and all these funds are fungible. When the archdiocese insures the employees of a Catholic school that is not attached to a church but is freestanding, the funds come from those coffers. If the government should force the archdiocese to provide contraception as part of its health care package, then the monies are not coming from an outside, separately subsidized entity. It is forcing a religious organization to act in direct opposition to its conscience.

On the 1040 form we file for income taxes, there is a box that asks if we would like to contribute to the presidential campaign fund. What if this box were not an option? What if you want to donate to your politician of choice but, in order to do so, you must also provide equal funds for their opponent? That’s fair, isn’t it?

Comments

citizen1 2 years, 1 month ago

End the tyrany from Washington. Vote for freedom from in November.

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rtwngr 2 years, 1 month ago

The bottom line is the Obama administration is trying to impose its will on the Catholic Church not the other way around. It wasn't as if the church ran afoul of the law and the administration has stepped in to correct it. No, this is a blatant, secularist attack on and institution that it views as the enemy.

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Enlightenment 2 years, 1 month ago

Ok, religious entities, regardless if they are self insured or not, should not be exempt from including contraceptives in their health insurance coverage. Contraceptives are not only used by women for prevention of pregnancies, they are also used for other health reasons. Besides, the majority of the women in their parishes have used contraceptives at one time or another.

Also, the Catholic church may believe their religious freedom is being infringed upon when government requires that their insurance companies provide contraceptives, but the church conveniently overlooks all of the funding their institute receives from the government. For instance, their Catholic schools would not be possible without the funding from the Fed. government. Just like the Catholic religion doesn't think that they should be forced to pay for women to have decent health coverage, I don't believe that my tax contributions should be used to fund religious schools.

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Kirk Larson 2 years, 1 month ago

The Catholic Church is not against Big Government. They just pine for the days when they were the Government.

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voevoda 2 years, 1 month ago

Very few people have queried why Roman Catholic Church leaders decided to make a stand for "religious freedom" on the issue of insurance coverage for birth control. But they should. Catholic doctrine doesn't oppose use of birth control under all circumstances. Rather, it permits use of birth control when pregnancy would be unhealthy for the woman; this isn't an absolute ban, such as that on murder. The Church does not obligate itself to prohibit birth control use by non-Catholics, so it does not face any moral issue or violation of its religious freedom if it is required to include birth control in insurance coverage for non-Catholic employees. The Roman Catholic Church has other doctrines that current insurance regulations violate. The Church bans remarriage after divorce, but Church institutions readily provide insurance coverage to the spouses of remarried divorcees. Why aren't Catholic leaders making a fuss about this? The Church bans premarital and extra-marital sex, but it doesn't withhold insurance coverage for the treatment of sexually-transmitted diseases.
Given the inconsistency in the Church leaders' moral outrage, I have to wonder if this issue is just a political ploy to rally support to conservative Catholic candidates, such as Santorum.

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Darrell Lea 2 years, 1 month ago

What I find bothersome about all this is the whole nod-and-a-wink attitude among parishioners and clergy alike regarding the contraception issue.

If such a large percentage of the flock actually uses contraception in their daily life, why continue the charade of subservience and obsequiousness toward paternalistic leaders who make the rules? A church is nothing more than its members, yes?

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Gandalf 2 years, 1 month ago

Looks like the religious reich has been reduced to simply attacking the messengers and not the message. If birth control is a sin, how come every "good" catholic doesn't have a dozen squaling brats? Why does evilsam only have 3? Is his newly married daughter knocked up yet? Seems she should be.

Seems like their own women are saying, "You no playa the game, you no maka da rules".

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headdoctor 2 years, 1 month ago

So, the real reason behind Scott Burkhart's letter isn't really so much about religious freedom. it is about the Archdiocese of Kansas City being self insured. If their self insurance covers medical coverage for their employees I really have to question the sanity of the Archdiocese for making that choice. There are many self insured organizations but most are smart enough to have plans for things like employee health insurance, liability, etc.

If they thought they were big enough to be self insured then this contraceptive thing shouldn't be a problem. Another fine attempt at spinning the real issue.

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Darrell Lea 2 years, 1 month ago

I don't believe churches and other religious organizations get a free pass to write their own rules if they choose to participate in the secular society that surrounds it. I support President Obama and the compromise he supports regarding birth control coverage.

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FalseHopeNoChange 2 years, 1 month ago

More Government (which btw are people too) "critical thinking" from a "Liberal Arts" education designed to "regulate" your private behavor. The Obama is "regulating" private behavior like a good "Liberal Arts" guy.

Thanks for the primer Hoeflich.

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Paul R Getto 2 years, 1 month ago

"...hypocritical it is for the Catholic Church..." Now, now. We are all hypocrites about something or other and we are all athiests because no one believes in all the gods invented by man. The church is not criminal or corrupt, but some of the people who work for it are. I do, however, agree they should stay out of this argument, particularly since their success rate convincing their own members is apparently less than 5%.

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SnakeFist 2 years, 1 month ago

"Freedom of religion is not just freedom of worship. It is also the freedom to express that religion..."

Absolutely not. You have freedom of belief not freedom of action, or else every religious terrorist would plead "religious expression" as a defense.

More importantly, churches are exempt under the contraception law, but church-affiliated organizations (i.e., businesses) are not. Should businesses be able to decide they don't want to pay for health insurance that treats sexually transmitted diseases, cancer, heart disease, etc?

Lastly, keep in mind that no one is being forced to use contraception, businesses are simply being made to provide coverage for it in case the employee decides, as a matter of her religious conscience, that she wants it.

I won't even go into how hypocritical it is for the Catholic Church - which has facilitated the rape of tens of thousands of children - to say anything about morality. Such a criminally and morally corrupt organization has no moral authority to proclaim contraception immoral.

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Richard Heckler 2 years, 1 month ago

The Catholic Church is anti sex but not anti child molestor???

The Catholic church is anti abortion but also anti abortion prevention????

The catholic church sounds a lot like the republican party or should I say the former republican party that has become the RINO/CINO party. It's all about the art of extreme deception.

This whole mess was born by and has been promoted by the RINO/CINO party. The super duper phonies.

Meanwhile the RINO/CINO party of NO is still getting in the way of jobs jobs jobs jobs and new stronger economic growth. This should the headlines.

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Abdu Omar 2 years, 1 month ago

If a person doesn't think birth control is right for them, they don't have to take them. No one is forcing them down the throats of anyone. If the Church doesn't condone them, that is their right and the followers of that faith can forego them. What is the big deal?

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Corey Williams 2 years, 1 month ago

Ok then, how about this: the amount that the employer kicks in for insurance, that can't be used for contraception. The part of the insurance premium that is paid for by the employee, that can be used to pay for contraception if it doesn't go against the employee's personal belief.

Otherwise, prove your god exists in order to claim your religious freedoms.

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its_just_math 2 years, 1 month ago

The Anointed One wants to co-opt your finances; end of discussion. His tongue, smoother than the finest silk, fools noone---certainly not me. Bidding him farewell will be my Financial Spring.

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Gandalf 2 years, 1 month ago

"Freedom of religion is not just freedom of worship. It is also the freedom to express that religion."

It's also freedom from religion.

It is better to have a religious organization forcing an employee to act in direct opposition to his/her conscience?

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