Good piece by Catholic League on links between Obamacare, HHS mandate, and ACLU

Be sure to review and file away for reference this piece from the Catholic League:


April 4, 2012

On April 3, Catholic News Service published a story on an internal memo from the bishops on ObamaCare. Catholic League president Bill Donohue comments on it today:

The more the bishops study this issue, the more resolved they are in opposing ObamaCare. At the heart of the bishops’ objections is the contrived and unjust way the Obama administration defines a religious organization; it grants an exemption only to what it deems is a religious entity. In point of fact, it is the ACLU that is really dictating to Catholics what passes as a religious institution.

In 2000, the California Contraceptive Equity Law was passed. In it there is a provision defining what qualifies as a religious employer, and it was written by the ACLU. Besides noting that the institution must be a non-profit, the exact qualifying language is as follows:
“The inculcation of religious values is the purpose of the entity”
“The entity primarily employs persons who share the religious tenets of the entity”
“The entity serves primarily persons who share the religious tenets of the entity”

The Health and Human Services edict forcing Catholic institutions to provide for abortion-inducing drugs in their insurance coverage also allows an exemption for groups it deems religious. Besides noting the non-profit status, the exact qualifying language is as follows:
“Has the inculcation of religious values as its purpose”
“Primarily employs persons who share its religious tenets”
“Primarily serves persons who share its religious tenets”
Having written a Ph.D. dissertation and two books on the ACLU, I can say unequivocally that the ACLU has long been an enemy of religious liberty. Indeed, when it was founded in 1920 by Roger Baldwin (whom I interviewed in 1978), it listed all the provisions of the First Amendment among its first ten goals. Not among them was religious liberty. And these are the same folks that Obama turns to in his war on Catholics.

Contact our director of communications about Donohue’s remarks:
Jeff Field
Phone: 212-371-3191

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. Dave N. says:

    So basically, California already passed a law 12 years ago with the exact same wording as the HHS mandate? With nary a peep from state’s 11.8 million Catholics? And no one: archbishop, bishop, priest or lay opened their mouth in protest?

    I am reminded of a story about cows and barn doors.

  2. heway says:

    I was living and working as a registered nurse in 2000 – at a hospital that originally was run by Benedictines and became a district hospital in the 70’s. There was no ‘scuttle but’ about this law and probably was one of many laws passed behind closed doors. Many politicians that I would not vote for in CA, are now sitting in the US congress. God help us all!

  3. The Cobbler says:

    “The entity [to qualify as religious and be allowed its conscience protection] serves primarily persons who share the religious tenets of the entity”
    We have to be regulated because we’re willing to serve others as well as ourselves?

    “If you pick up a starving dog off the street and make him prosperous, he will not bite you. This is the principle difference between a dog and a man.” ~Mark Twain

  4. disputationist says:

    What were all the Catholics in California doing in 2004? Why was this passed without any protest there, or in all the other states that have “contraceptive equity” laws?

  5. Nicole says:

    I’d be totally behind opposing ObamaCare if the grounds were subsidiarity and not religious liberty…

  6. Clinton says:

    It’s understandable to wonder why state regulations– even the extremely invasive, restrictive
    ones drafted by the ACLU– never made much news. The fact is until now entities like Catholic
    hospitals had a work-around that enabled them to operate under federal, not state regs.

    From the website article “6 Things Everyone Should Know About the HHS Mandate”:

    “HHS chose the narrowest state-level religious exemption as the model for its own. That
    exemption was drafted by the ACLU and exists in only three states (New York, California,
    and Oregon). Even without a religious exemption, religious employers can already avoid
    the contraceptive mandate in 28 states
    (italics in original) by self-insuring their prescription
    drug coverage, dropping that drug coverage altogether, or opting for regulation under a
    federal law (ERISA) that pre-empts state law. The HHS mandate closes off all of these
    avenues of relief.”

    So, it’s not that Church entities were already paying for contraceptives and abortifacients,
    it’s that until this administration decided to target the Church, She had ways to avoid such
    state mandates as the ACLU-written ones. The HHS mandate is designed to cut off all such
    avenues of escape.

  7. SKAY says:

    ACLU founder Roger Basdwin made it clear what his intentions were.

    “Reflecting on his early years as the ACLU’s Executive Director, Baldwin candidly revealed his original motives and objectives: “I am for socialism, disarmament, and ultimately, for abolishing the state itself as an instrument of violence and compulsion. I seek social ownership of property, the abolition of the properties class, and sole control of those who produce wealth. Communism is the goal. It all sums up into one single purpose — the abolition of dog-eat-dog under which we live. I don’t regret being part of the communist tactic. I knew what I was doing. I was not an innocent liberal. I wanted what the communists wanted and I traveled the United Front road to get it.”

  8. tealady24 says:

    Alrighty then, what about “get behind me, Satan!” don’t all the Obama-lovers understand?

  9. PA mom says:

    I think that people have become so accustomed to government being unable to produce something good, that they are convinced that it is equally ineffective at producing something bad. This administration seems to have no difficulty in that regard.

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