As we prepare to start implementing the socialized medicine law, the latest issue to explode is the mandate that all businesses must provide insurance, which covers contraception.
Churches are not businesses and are excluded from the requirement, but church-run schools, hospitals, food pantries, etc., must comply.
The law also defines contraception as medicines and devices that kill unborn children.
This means that religious schools, hospitals, etc., must provide abortion coverage as part of their mandated health insurance coverage.
The offered "compromise," is a distinction without a difference in that the same "coverage" is provided to all at the same price to the employer but the law "says" the church isn't paying for that part of the coverage.
The largest group of Christians in America are Catholics.
The Catholic Church presently occupies the center of this debate even though there are many other religious groups with similar beliefs.
It is the doctrine of the Catholic Church that children are a gift from God and it is inappropriate to frustrate God's will by intentionally preventing conception when a couple is in a sexual (presumably married) relationship.
Reasonable people can have differing opinions on this issue, including priests and bishops.
However, so long as this is the teaching of the church, those with church authority, such as the bishops, are expected to uphold it the same way we expect civil authorities to uphold laws that they disagree with.
It is the doctrine of the catholic Church that when the 23 pairs of human chromosomes, which, from separate sources, come together at conception, form a single genetically unique organism, life has begun.
As that life can never become anything other than a human being, it is human life.
While all life ends, human life should never be ended by human hands without just cause. That when human life is intentionally taken without just cause, it is murder.
When medications and devices which kill this unborn human life are used for the purpose of birth control, it is the commission of murder.
I do not believe a person could rise to any level of authority within the Catholic Church without sharing this fundamental view on the sanctity of human life.
If this law is implemented and the government tries to force the Catholic Church to pay for abortions, you can fully expect the Catholic Church to be in open rebellion against the U.S. Government.
You would see American Bishops going to prison for life before they ever permitted any Catholic institution to pay for anything that took innocent life.
The First Amendment to the Constitution prohibits the federal government from passing any law, which abridges the free exercise of religion. Presently, any person is free to do whatever they want regarding contraception and abortion.
But as an institution, the Catholic Church could no more pay for contraceptives and abortifacients than they could offer sacrifice to pagan idols. To force them to do so would be at a minimum an abridgment of their right to freely exercise their religious beliefs.
But this issue is not just about contraception and abortion. As important and inflammatory as those issues are, this controversy illustrates a broader problem with the health care law. It represents the loss of individual freedom and an attempted fundamental transformation of American society as the government takes over healthcare.
Remember, the first reason that people came to this continent was to be able to follow their own religious beliefs without having to pay a tax to a state church or follow the rules of a faith they did not believe in.
Unquestionably, governments have the power to declare conduct illegal. For example, while you can believe in human sacrifice to a god or that taking illegal drugs is a religious sacrament, you are prohibited from engaging in that activity.
Governments have the right to tell you what you must do? Can the government tell you that you must participate in human sacrifice or that you must consume drugs against your will?
I am a small business owner. If the government can tell me that I have to pay for my employee's abortions, what else can they order me to do? Don't forget that the 13th Amendment to the Constitution prohibits the government from compelling people to do things against their will.
Moreover, the 10th Amendment states that powers not directly given to the federal government are powers that belong to the states or to the people individually.
Some may say, "But healthcare is so important, there must surely be an exception. Besides, this could not possibly have been considered by the founding fathers when they wrote the Constitution."
While it is true enough that our founders did not consider health care, they also did not address food and shelter in the Constitution either. While important, these things are not the province of the government.
If we ignore these constitutional prohibitions, in the interest of health, can't the government also force us to do morning exercises? Rest is important for good health, can they mandate when to go to bed and when to get up? If you don't comply and someone "informs" on you, when you need medical care, the government can simply withhold treatment to non-conformers.
When I was in Shanghai, China, in 1990, that is exactly what I experienced. At 10 p.m., it was lights out. At 6 a.m., loud speakers would blare to awaken the populace. By 6:30, everyone was outside doing morning exercises.
The government withheld treatment for non-conformers which made bribery rampant among those who would inform on your staying out, sleeping in, or failing to exercise.
In the mid-90s, my brother practiced medicine in London for two years. He saw that when patients who were fat or smokers needed treatment, or who had received the same treatment once before, would simply be told that there was nothing more that medical science could do for them and sent home to die.
It was also common for hospitals to not tell patients the full extent of their condition, send them home to save the cost of treatment and allow them to die.
Virtually everything you do has the potential to affect your health in some way.
That means that under this law, the government has the ability to regulate virtually everything you do. When the government controls health care, the government controls your life as well as your health.
It seems to me that the reason people want socialized medicine is for a sense of security. When people seek security from the government, they trade their liberty. I wonder, are we still the land of the brave and the home of the free?