[I just received the following “Action Item” in an email from Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council asking me to “Click here to provide public comment on HHS Contraceptive Mandate Rule and New Proposed Accounting Gimmicks.” My message was deemed too long so it was not accepted, and no attempt on my part to shorten it made it acceptable, so I gave up sending it through them. But I thought I would post it here for all to see, followed by my own rant describing how to solve these issues God’s way.]
The original email:
They’re at it again, and we need your help to ensure liberty remains.
We know that religious freedom does not stop inside a church door — not in America! The First Amendment — our First Freedom — protects both individuals and groups; for-profit groups like Hobby Lobby, and non-profits like Wheaton College.
However, yet another “proposed regulation” by the Obama Administration issued in February does nothing to protect religious freedom in implementing the Department of Health and Human Services abortion drug and contraception mandate. The original HHS mandate issued in August, 2011 included an exemption for employers who hired and served people of the same faith, and had as its primary purpose the “inculcation of religion.” This meant only churches were exempt.
There is no exemption or even supposed “accommodation” for businesses. For religious non-profits, the administration proposed in 2012 a religious “accommodation.” However, it turns out that the proposals merely force religious non-profits to provide free abortifacients and contraceptives in their insurance plans with the cost being shifted to the insurer. The administration’s new proposed omits the embarrassingly restrictive prong about “inculcating religion,” but the exemption in practice still only applies to churches and their auxiliaries.
The proposed rule lays out more specifics on the “accounting gimmick” that all religious charities, health care providers and universities will be required to implement in offering free contraception and abortifacient coverage in their employee health plans. As proposed, the rule would still require religious non-profit employers to purchase health plans. If the employer objects to including abortifacients and contraceptives, the insurance company then is required to “automatically” and “simultaneously” provide the free coverage of objectionable services to the employees. The Administration claims this “simultaneous” coverage offered by the insurer is separate enough from the employer’s plan to “accommodate” their religious objections. However, the employer’s plan is still under this gimmick the legal trigger for free contraceptives and abortifacients to the employees. This doesn’t protect conscience, it guts it.
We need you to provide public “comment” to HHS opposing the proposed regulation. Follow this link to submit your comment to HHS, so they will know that those on the side of religious freedom care about this issue (don’t worry, we’ll provide you with some sample text). Our religious freedoms are essential to our democracy, and we urge you to please act now – the open comment period ends April 8.
[To HHS: Please protect religious liberty]–
Please rescind the “contraceptive mandate” in private health insurance with no co-pay to patients. The proposed accounting schemes in the “Proposed Rules” would do nothing to protect religious freedom for businesses or religious non-profits. The exemption only applies to churches, and I believe a full exemption should be offered to any employer who has moral and religious objections to covering contraceptives and drugs they believe function like abortion drugs. Non-profits and for-profit businesses should not be forced to pay for health insurance only to be the legal gateway for their insurer to provide objectionable benefits and services to their employees. Such drugs and services are often covered already and widely available. Forcing religious charities, universities and health care providers and other non-profit employers to directly provide access to such services is a violation of their First Amendment rights.
I am opposed to the contraception mandate, because I believe some of these drugs can cause an abortion (such as “ella” and “Plan B”), and the conscience of religious people who oppose these drugs should be protected, not violated. No accounting scheme alleviates the fact that religious employers will still be forced to pay for health coverage that includes free contraceptives, abortifacients and sterilization services whether the cost of the drugs and services is free or not. If the mandate with this proposed scheme does not violate religious freedom, why exempt churches? If churches deserve an exemption, why does HHS believe the same exemption doesn’t apply to other groups?
I strongly oppose the proposed rule and request HHS to provide a full exemption of the HHS mandate to all employers who object to certain coverage benefits.
[My added comments to the FRC-provided message above:]
For those who are Bible-believing Christians, it is absolutely reprehensible to our faith and contrary to what the Bible explicitly teaches at 2 Chronicles 19:2 for any Christian individual, group, or business to support activities or actions which are against the Bible, for such support is ABSOLUTELY WRONG and FORBIDDEN. “Shouldest thou help the ungodly, and love them that hate the Lord?”
It is ABSOLUTELY WRONG for the Federal Government or the State Governments together or individually to require even remotely the support of Bible-believing Christians, financially or otherwise, for ungodly causes. Abortion is an ungodly cause in any context in terms of what the Bible teaches.
Officials in this current administration must wake up to the fact that God has issued very plain warnings against nations and individuals who insist on doing what is wrong. Psalm 9:17 is just one of very many such warnings: “The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God.”
My further rant:
Of course, I know full well that HHS or even Homeland Security or any other government agency will never find this site. Even if they found it, they would not read it!
One of their major problems is that they do not know how to read, so if they did find this site they could not read it anyway.
Funny how those who argue so strenuously about “separation of church and state” are so bent on regulating what “church” can or cannot say or do and where.
The reason our nation has fallen so far morally and economically is exactly because our nation as a nation, as a government, has dishonored God and His written Word in the Bible. Promoting Sodomy and attempting to tamper with God’s definition of marriage are just two of the latest outrages.
But the solution is not to be found in government, particularly more government. The solution that God has provided is very simple, and most effective.
Every person who claims to be a Christian needs to actually become a genuine Bible-believing Christian who spends time every day reading and studying the Bible for themselves.
Then, every genuine Bible-believing Christian needs to win one person to Christ and teach them to read the Bible, study the Bible, and in the coming year reach just one additional person for Christ through genuine conversion and the New Birth accomplished by the Holy Spirit through His Written Word.
If this happened, then, like in Apostolic days, all these genuine Bible-believing Christians would (by living a life obedient to the Commands of Christ) “turn the world upside down.”
The reason this is not happening is because (1) no one is seriously reading and studying the Bible; (2) no one is winning others to Christ by sharing the written Word of God in the Bible with them, especially outside the doors of a church.
Don’t kid yourself. God is not dead. The Bible is still true. The Holy Spirit still works through the written Word of God in the Bible to produce the New Birth in everyone who believes.