Thursday, June 19, 2014

Supreme Court to announce ruling on conscience v. coercion

Excerpted from commentary by Jennifer Marshall,"HHS Mandate: Only the Beginning of Obamacare’s Conscience Problems," Daily Signal, June 17, 2014 - Any day now the U.S. Supreme Court is expected to rule in the case of Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood Specialties—family-owned businesses that have gone to court to challenge a provision under Obamacare that requires them and nearly all other employers to cover abortion-inducing drugs, contraception and sterilization, regardless of their religious beliefs.

The suits, brought by the Green family, evangelicals who own Hobby Lobby, and the Hahn family, Mennonites who run Conestoga Wood, are among 49 filed by family-owned businesses challenging the Obamacare HHS mandate. The Obama administration has been unwilling to compromise. Meanwhile, 51 lawsuits have been joined by hundreds of non-profit religious organizations seeking to preserve their religious independence to set internal policy consistent with their faith. All told, 300 plaintiffs.

But it is important to remember that all this commotion is the result of one small aspect of one set of regulations concerning preventive care under Obamacare. And that means we’ve only just begun to see the potential conscience problems that could come from this massive overhaul of our health care system.

Handing the moral compass to remote bureaucrats to navigate this territory is a bad idea. The centralization of more decision-making about the benefits that health plans must provide means that such determinations are more likely to be made without respect for Americans’ differing beliefs on these issues.

That’s why we need patient-centered health care. Americans should be free to choose the health care plans that meet their needs and reflect their moral convictions. Individuals and families need to be able to direct their health care in accord with their conscience; that includes the benefits, treatments and procedures financed through their health insurance.


Jonathan ImbodyCMA VP for Govt. Relations Jonathan Imbody: “My friend and colleague Jennifer Marshall realizes what our founders and the ancient philosophers knew--that left unchecked, Government will compete with God for the people's allegiance, replacing His universal standards with State ideology and mandating submission. Consider the following observations:
Plato: “[T]here exist divine moral laws, not easy to apprehend, but operating upon all mankind. God, not man, is the measure of all things.”i
Cicero: "True law is right reason in agreement with Nature; it is of universal application and everlasting; it summons to duty by its commands, and averts from wrong-doing by its prohibitions."ii
Augustine: "True justice has no existence save in that republic whose founder and ruler is Christ....iii [T]there can be no people, and therefore no republic, where there is no justice."iv
Thomas Jefferson: "[O]ur rules can have authority over such natural rights only as we have submitted to them. The rights of conscience we never submitted, we could not submit. We are answerable for them to our God."v
James Madison: "Religion, or the duty which we owe our Creator, and the manner of discharging it, can be directed only by reason and conviction, not by force and violence; and therefore all men are equally entitled to the free exercise of religion, according to the dictates of conscience."vi
Charles Colson: "Both church and state assert standards and values in society; both seek authority; both compete for allegiance. As members of both the religious and the political spheres, the Christian is bound to face conflict."vii
When Government replaces God and His universal standards, the only standard left is the sword of the State, which it wields with coercive power (fining Hobby Lobby $791 million dollars a yearviii) to enforce its own ideology. Take a stand with the Green and Hahn families as they fight in the courts for religious freedom. As Mordecai explained to a hesitant Queen Esther,ix this edict also has you in its crosshairs.

CMA Supreme Court brief in Hobby Lobby religious freedom case
CMA’s Freedom2Care website on freedom of faith, conscience and speech
CMA commentaries

Use our easy pre-written customizable message to support H.R. 940 - Healthcare Conscience Rights Act (House bill) and S. 1204 - Health Care Conscience Rights Act (Senate bill)

i Cited in Russell Kirk, The Roots of American Order (LaSalle, Ill.: Open Court, 1974), 81.
ii Charles Colson and Ellen Santilli, God and Government, Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1987, updated 2007, Kindle location 4917.
iii Colson, location 1482.
iv Colson, location 14479.
v Thomas Jefferson (1743–1826), U.S. president. Notes on the State of Virginia (1787), Query 17, p. 159, ed. William Peden (1954).
vi James Madison (1751–1836), U.S. president. Virginia Declaration of Rights, 1776. W.T. Hutchinson et al., The Papers of James Madison, vol. 1, p. 175, Chicago and Charlottesville, Virginia (1962-1991).
vii Colson, Kindle location 2223.
ix Esther 4:13.

1 comment:

  1. Jonathan,
    I enjoyed meeting you at CMDA media training and appreciate the hard work you do defending these issues. In prayer for these cases. I sent emails to our Tennessee Senators on this issue.