Defending Faith from Federal Bullies; the Contraception Mandate Mustn't Profane Americans' Sacred Beliefs

By Strange, Luther | The Washington Times (Washington, DC), February 17, 2014 | Go to article overview

Defending Faith from Federal Bullies; the Contraception Mandate Mustn't Profane Americans' Sacred Beliefs


Strange, Luther, The Washington Times (Washington, DC)


Byline: Luther Strange

Thirty-three years ago, a nun by the name of Mother Angelica started a small television-broadcasting network out of her monastery's garage in my home state of Alabama.

Ten years before she went live on the air, David Green started a small arts-and-crafts business from his garage, about 700 miles west in Oklahoma City.

Both of these garage startups now boast tremendous success. Mother Angelica's network, EWTN, is the largest Catholic media company in the world. David Green's family-owned company, Hobby Lobby, has 589 stores employing more than 27,000 people nationwide.

A nun and an artisan -- two people propelled by their faith to serve their God. Two entirely different faces of the American dream.

Now, Mother Angelica and David Green have become two very different faces of the same legal battle: the fight against the government's so-called "contraception mandate."

Both EWTN and Hobby Lobby have been forced by the government, in the wake of Obamacare, to comply with a mandate that forces them to violate their most deeply held religious beliefs. Both face massive fines for refusing to comply -- up to $100 per employee per day.

This is despite the fact that both EWTN and Hobby Lobby have already gone to great lengths to ensure access to good health care for their employees. Each managed to do so without covering drugs or procedures to which they object on religious grounds.

For the Greens, this meant honoring their widely shared belief that life begins at conception by excluding four forms of contraception whose U.S. Food and Drug Administration labels warn can destroy an embryo.

It also meant offering a free walk-in health clinic for employees at its headquarters, among other excellent benefits. For EWTN, it meant creating its own insurance plan and pushing back for years against pressure from the insurance industry to cover abortions.

No doubt Mother Angelica and David Green could never have fathomed that the journey begun in their garages would lead them to face a liberty-crushing government regulation forced on them by Washington bureaucrats. …

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