The HHS Mandate and the Government Shutdown

I met Dr Alveda King a few years ago when she spoke at our annual Pro Life Rose Day celebration at the Oklahoma State Capitol.

She was shuffled from one event to another like someone on a conveyor belt, which means that I know she does not remember either me or most of the many people she met that day. ¬†Perhaps her most important meeting was a closed-door discussion she had with leaders of Oklahoma’s African American community. That discussion resonates in the hearts of people I know who were there. It affected them, and they are still turning what she said over in their minds.

That, I think is the point. Conversion is not usually a spoing! moment, but a process. Even when it seems to happen all at once, it’s been coming for quite a while. My own conversion experience is an example of that. I know from personal conversations that some of the people who heard Dr King speak are slowly being converted by what she said as they think about it in time.

I respect Dr King and I take her opinions seriously. That is why I am linking to an article she wrote about the government shut down and the HHS Mandate. I don’t fully agree with what she says.

It’s her opinion that the shutdown is entirely about the HHS Mandate. I don’t think so. If that was what the shut down was about, then that would be the issue. Frankly, if that was what the shutdown was about, the shutdown would probably be over and the HHS Mandate would be history. It is because the demands leading to the shutdown were broadened that the thing has been such a stand-off.

However, I do know that the HHS Mandate is on the table, along with other considerations. I view the HHS Mandate as the government, waging war on the First Amendment. I advocate doing whatever legitimate actions are necessary to get the president to rescind this mandate. Failing that, I advocate fighting the mandate in the courts. Failing that, I advocate and will participate in a protracted and unyielding fight to repeal the mandate by social and political means.

If the mandate was the only issue, I would support this shutdown without reservation, even though I honestly fear the path we are taking with these disruptions of government. This brinksmanship will push things to a breaking point one of these days, and that has the potential to bring down horrific consequences for this country.

For all these reasons, I am more confused than anything else about our government today. I don’t think there’s a genuine leader or a whole-hearted patriot in the whole thing. I certainly do not trust the leadership of either political party.

I just gave you my opinion about this, which differs somewhat from Dr King’s.

However, I think her opinion is worth reading and considering as we think about both this shutdown and the continuous threat of shutdowns that seems to be how our government is doing business lately.

From CP Opinion:

October 9, 2013|9:54 am

“For death has crept in through our windows and has entered our mansions. It has killed off the flower of our youth. Children no longer play in the streets, and young men no longer gather in the squares.”
 Jeremiah 9:21 NLT

America, not only do our children not play in the streets, they shoot each other in the classrooms. Don’t think that anyone is safe just because some of us can afford gated mansions, armored cars, private schools and the like. None of us are exempt from the times, including the looming shut down.

Tragically, some of our government leaders are using scare tactics to numb our consciences, to instill fear in us and turn our hearts away from genuine justice.

Please make no mistake about it, the government shutdown is about the HHS Mandate which if allowed will force harmful contraceptives and easy access to abortion on our boys and girls.

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  • RelapsedCatholic

    I think this shutdown is about the 2012 election. The entire Republican Party received a stinging rebuke and they are trying to claim what if increasingly a Pyrrhic victory.

  • FW Ken

    My own suspicion is that the shutdown concerns Obamacare more broadly than just the HHS mandate, but that said, her points about the mandate are well-considered. I will say that if that were the primary issue, I can’t see how we would know: NBC News has been running nightly propaganda highlighting the worst possible scenarios and blaming the Republicans. They certainly aren’t going to focus on the mandate.

    Since Dr. King brought up hormonal contraception, indulge me, if you will, to link an article that addresses that subject, and some other things that might better fit under the post about women.

    • Bill S

      I wouldn’t put it past the Tea Party to be doing this just because they oppose the Mandate.

  • Bill S

    Please make no mistake about it, the government shutdown is about the HHS Mandate which if allowed will force harmful contraceptives and easy access to abortion on our boys and girls.


  • Susan Paxton

    It remains hilarious to me that the Bishops are whining about the HHS mandate and so many Catholic writers are righteously supporting them when 99% of our fellow Catholics have already voted on this subject and use birth control.

  • Sus_1

    I find it discouraging reading something like this. No one is going to force anyone to use contraceptives or get an abortion under the HHS Mandate. It’s hard to take anything Dr. King says now because of lack of credibility.