Get updates from Catholic and Enjoying It! delivered straight to your inbox
In which Yr. Obdt. Svt looks at the question of whether we have an obligation to support the HHS mandate for the same reason we have an obligation to pay our taxes during an unjust war.
Hint: no. Resist the Tyrant!
Amen, brother. This is just another step on a slippery slope which is moving towards total free fall.
Aside: I haven’t visited and commented in years, but I’ll be coming back now. The HHS attack was a pretty clarifying event. God bless.
Forty years ago, the we’re-for-peace-let’s-get-anyone-who-isn’t movement was plastering the place with “DON’T PAY TAXES FOR AN IMMORAL WAR” placards. But they see no problem with expecting people to pay taxes for abortion.
I don’t see where we have a moral obligation to pay taxes for an unjust war or for abortion anymore than to obey the HHS mandate, which the Supremes have designated as a tax. The problem is how you can get out of it in practical terms. Relatively little tax money is spent on abortion, so the pro-life tax payer can make tax deductible donations to pro-life charities thus both depriving the government of revenue and more than off-setting the tiny fraction of his tax dollars which go to fund abortions. Unjust war is a much bigger problem since about 65% of those fungible tax dollars go to “defense” which means waging unjust wars around the globe. (Government programs like Social Security and Medicare have their own dedicated taxes which tax-payers can only reduce by earning less.) To the extent I can, I try to offset funds that go to unjust wars by contributions to “enemy” charities (e.g. Serbs, Palestinians) or to peace and justice type groups. The HHS mandate (tax) is an even thornier problem since it is dedicated to evil. It can be evaded only by withdrawing from a pursuit required to insure its employees and it would be more harmful for the Church to withdraw from things like universities and hospitals. Indeed, forcing that might be the real reason for the mandate. I think the Church should continue to relentlessly campaign for repeal of the mandate, seek legal ways to evade it, and redouble its opposition to the government in the many other areas where the government is pursuing anti-life policies.
Why look for a practical way to escape the Immoralities of the world. Why try to remain *safe* in your opposition to evil. Until the people of America are willing to suffer for their beliefs, willing to lose their freedom or money, the ruling class will never stop taking power. If you want to find a loophole to avoid dealing with out masters, then be my guest; but know that it will be that much harder to defeat the giant when the time finally comes.
Thank God for martyrs, hermits and even rebels, but the vast majority of the Christian people are not going to fit into any of those categories. They will try to practice their faith as best they can and escape the notice of the giant until the day the giant finally collapses. Thus did the Mexicans, thus did the Russians and other East Europeans.
The Court hasn’t designated the HHS mandate as a tax. The Court hasn’t said anything at all about it.
Just because it is unjust for the US to war in a specific instance does not make the other side worthy of your funds. It is morally possible for a war to have only bad guys.
Looks like a small Catholic-owned commercial business just got a break when a court stayed enforcement of the HHS mandate pending final resolution of the various anti-mandate lawsuits. But I’m not optimistic as to what will happen once the Supremes have their final say.
Just remember: when you permit a secular liberal government to define “health” and “health care”, you’ve opened Pandora’s Box. Homophobia will become a disease; eradicating that disease will become the business of the “health system”. The same goes for all sorts of other things which will come into direct conflict with natural law (which is to say true) morality. “Anti-choice indoctrination” will become a form of abusive parenting, from which children must be rescued for their own good. Christian morality will become a disorder requiring medication and therapy, with no possibility of “opting out”: health care is universal, after all. Just watch, and give it time. “What could it hurt” and “how were we supposed to know”, and all that.
The HHS mandate is a red herring. Focusing on it specifically is like being attacked by a vast army and complaining about one guy’s crossbow. It plays into the hands of the enemy even if he loses: he can afford to lose one little battle, maybe even wants to lose it as a kind of head-fake, when the long term outcome of the war is assured.
The entiriety of Obamacare, and socialized medicine in general when it is under the control of the anti-Christian secular State, is the enemy here. Vastly increasing the power of anti-Christian governments is craziness, even when those powers in principle could be used for good by a good government. We don’t have a good government. We have anti-Christian governance in an anti-Christian culture, the continued dominance of which is assured by the structure of our two-party representative democracy and the cultural sewer in which it operates; and we’d better face up to that fact.
Unless Christians unite against that enemy, these little skirmishes are going to mean nothing.
To me the problem with the HHS Mandate isn’t even paying for other people’s contraception. I can handle that as an unjust tax upon my insurance or decision not to pay for health insurance.
The problem with the HHS Mandate to me is *the redefinition of a religious group under IRS Rules* entirely. 501 c (8) organizations like the Knights of Columbus are no longer religious groups because, despite the fact that all members are “Practical Catholics in Communion with the Holy See”, we often serve charity cases who are not Catholic. Same with St. Vincent De Paul and a million other orders and apostolates.
In other words- if your chapel runs a soup kitchen or allows the homeless to stay in their cars in your parking lot during the week, you’re no longer a religious organization under IRS rules thanks to the HHS Mandate. Paying for contraception is only the tip of the iceberg- the greater part is still underwater ready to tear the hull open.