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Nov 01 2011

Forced everything!

PZ had a good time with a blogger fretting about the US moving from democracy to despotism on account of not sucking up to Catholic bishops quite enough. I took a look at the blog post and spotted an item or two for mopping up.

The Church is raising the alarm: Our religious liberty is under attack.

Cardinal Francis George was prophetic in 2009 when he said the White House had taken “the first step in moving our country from democracy to despotism.” That was when President Obama broke the promise he made to Catholics at Notre Dame and made the decision to strip conscience rights from Catholic health care professionals, a ruling that could force them to either perform abortions or lose their jobs.

Really! That is shocking. So the gummint is going to force Catholic neurosurgeons and pediatricians to perform abortions or lose their jobs?

No. It’s not a matter of all Catholic health care professionals having to perform abortions if they want to keep their jobs; it’s a matter of  requiring Catholic health care professionals whose jobs include providing abortions to do the jobs they have. It’s a matter of the quite familiar principle that if you refuse to do your job, you don’t get to keep it just the same. That principle isn’t special for Catholics, it’s not made up to persecute them; it’s just that they’re the ones refusing to do the jobs they have.

In other words, beware of the self-pitying rhetoric of the offended godbotherer.

Forced Contraception. Health and Human Service has issued a regulation mandating contraceptive coverage from almost all private health insurance plans. “There is an exception for certain religious employers,” said Lori, “but to borrow from Sr. Carol Keehan of the Catholic Health Association, it is so incredibly narrow that it would cover only the ‘parish housekeeper.’”

Same again, you see? It’s not forced contraception. It’s not the gummint forcing everybody to be contracepted. It’s not forcing Catholics to be contracepted; it’s not forcing bishops to be contracepted. It’s mandating insurance coverage for contraception. That is not “forced contraception.” It’s funny what a hard time this devout fella has reporting accurately.

11 comments

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  1. 1
    feralboy12

    It’s funny what a hard time this devout fella has reporting accurately.

    Accurate reporting would detract from the fine sense of panic the article engenders.

  2. 2
    notscarlettohara

    You know, one day, I want to open up a steakhouse, with a reputation for the best steaks on this side of the country. And then, every time a Catholic walks in and orders a steak, I’ll tell them that the new cook I just hired is a vegan, and has a conscientious objection to people eating steak. And I didn’t think it was fair that he lose his job for objecting to something that was against his moral code, so the only items on the menu tonight are brussel sprouts and water.

  3. 3
    Ophelia Benson

    Ha! That’s a good one. Fairer to apply it to Catholics like this blogger though, as opposed to all Catholics, even though the “well I don’t agree with everything the pope says” Catholics are just shoring up that rotten institution by not leaving. Oh hell just apply it to all Catholics.

  4. 4
    Pierce R. Butler

    Cardinal Francis George was prophetic in 2009 when he said the White House had taken “the first step in moving our country from democracy to despotism.”

    They don’t make prophets like they useta.

    Btw, Cardinal George, you might want to review the “Patriot” Act, wholesale warrantless wiretapping, top-level authorization of torture, etc, before you declare anything in 2009 the “first step” toward despotism. If you really want to do your homework, look up “Palmer Raids”, “Prohibition”, “Joseph McCarthy”, “HUAC”, “Cointelpro”, “Richard Nixon”, etc – I’ll have an extra-credit list ready when you bring in those reports.

  5. 5
    A. Noyd

    I’ve found that every time some hyper-conservative starts bawling about tyranny, I become more interested in learning the actual histories of the build up to totalitarian states of the last century. (Not yet interested enough to do some studying, but that’s partly because I have enough things distracting me from my real homework already.)

  6. 6
    Aquaria

    I’ve found that every time some hyper-conservative starts bawling about tyranny, I become more interested in learning the actual histories of the build up to totalitarian states of the last century.

    Heres how the fascist authoritarians go about it, according to political scientist Lawrence Britt:

    http://www.secularhumanism.org/library/fi/britt_23_2.htm

    Umberto Eco’s list is chillingly similar:

    http://www.themodernword.com/eco/eco_blackshirt.html

    Try not to get sick at how America checks off on every single factor on both lists.

    The Britt article has several references listed that I highly recommend, to understand how nations become fascist/totalitarian states. If you can get your hands on them.

  7. 7
    A. Noyd

    @Aquaria

    Ooh, thanks! (You evil procrastination enabler, you.)
    :D

  8. 8
    LykeX

    It’s mandating insurance coverage for contraception. That is not “forced contraception.”

    It’s like the difference between a law stating that home insurance must cover fire damage and a law demanding that you burn down your house.

    It’s like the difference between a law stating that you have the right to use firearms in defense of your home and a law stating that you must shoot any person that comes to your door.

    In short, it’s like comparing apples and learjets. Not really the same thing at all.

  9. 9
    Dave

    Interesting how ’14 points of fascism’ is a meme in itself. Eco’s version has 14, so does Britt’s, which here is credited [but possibly erroneously] to something written much earlier:
    http://politicsanonymous.com/?p=1567

    And see this, from way back in ’04:
    http://www.ryananddebi.com/2004/10/16/laurence-britt%E2%80%99s-14-points-of-fascism/

    FWIW, I think both the Britt and the Eco lists are trite and simplistic.

  10. 10
    Deepak Shetty

    @Ophelia
    Catholics are just shoring up that rotten institution by not leaving.
    It actually surprises me how many of them just refuse to understand this. This includes people who are willing to speak up against the Vatican e.g. Sullivan. As long as they contribute to the coffers and make up the numbers they aren’t going to be able to change catholic church policy.

  11. 11
    Small Business Phone Systems

    Superb things the following Inside the renowned words of an particular terminator… illinois return to their workplace!

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