Obama vs First Amendment Liberties – UPDATES

From Charles Kadlec at Forbes, the must read of the day!

Before our very eyes, President Obama is on the verge of establishing the principle that the right to religious freedom comes not from our Creator, but from those who rule us. A government endowed right granted to women now trumps our unalienable right to act in accordance with our religious beliefs and conscience. Not only does this overturn the First Amendment, it also tramples the nation’s founding principles as announced in the Declaration of Independence. Such an achievement would be the true audacity of power.

The fundamental question is whether the Catholic Church, and by extension, individual Americans have to engage in activities according to the rulings of this and future Presidents, or are we free to live our lives as we choose as long as we do not harm another. Are we free to engage in long standing religious practices that have never before been deemed unlawful, or has the federal government established a de facto state “religion” that it is prepared to enforce through the full coercive power of its financial resources and the imposition of financial penalties.

If the Catholic Church and the American people choose the face saving “Option A” instead of “Option C,” then President Obama will have transformed America. We may be allowed the illusion of exercising our freedom, but in truth, we will be subjects in ObamaLand, required to do the bidding of this and future Presidents in the name of some higher, collective good.

However, the Catholic Church can turn the tables on the President by taking Option A off the table with a humble statement of principal that in the matters of religious practices and conscience, there is a higher authority than government Who it chooses to obey. If President Obama prevails and unleashes the full force of the federal government against the Church, the cost will be the closing of Catholic schools, hospitals and the loss of social services that play a vital part in communities across the nation. Such a stand would make clear to the American people that the alternative to religious freedom would be a mortal wound to our civil liberties and a complete disruption of civil society.

I am not a Catholic, nor do I believe in the Church’s opposition to contraception. But I pray that the leadership of the Catholic Church will have the faith and courage to stand for its core beliefs and use all of its moral power and political influence to defeat the President’s edict. I pray they will reach out across the political spectrum to people of all faiths, agnostics and atheists in the name of religious freedom and individual liberty. By so doing, they, and the institution of the Catholic Church, will have my love and respect for the rest of my life.

Read it all; send it to everyone you know. Tell it at the table and to your children. This is not just a Catholic battle; it’s not just a church battle.

“We are only a few days away from fundamentally transforming America!”
— Barack Obama, November 2008

Me, in 2009


Look, liberty is not lost in a day.
It is lost in increments and inches. Today you will not smoke in a pub – or smoke at all – even though those in charge might. Tomorrow the government will set your house temperature for you, while keeping their own set to their comfort levels. They will tell you how much money you may fairly earn, while “they” are not quite so limited. Next year your son will be forced to participate in mandatory volunteerism, and so will your mother. Soon you will be advised to abandon your hate-filled intolerant church for the approved and correct one. Someday, you may be asked to bow before someone and you will have to say “yes” and then live with yourself, or say “no” and live with those consequences. The banality of slavery…it is almost a tedious thing.

Just be ready, is all I am saying. And practice prayer – which is the most subversive of liberties; it can never be taken from you, and is a source of power and strength. Train yourself in prayer. Begin now, so that you are a fit, skilled practitioner when the need arises.

It will be easier to train yourself, and to read the data, if you put on the mind of exile before it is forced on you. What you do or give freely is never diminishable.

Russell Shaw at OSV: Why People Don’t Like the Catholic Church:

. . . the Catholic Church stands as the principal obstacle to realization of the secularists’ procedural paradise of all-but-unconditional choice. However the current controversy ends, this larger conflict will continue.


Pope John Paul II and Ignatius Cardinal Kung Pin Mei

UPDATE:
From the Progressive Christian
portal comes a voice of understanding and support

Also, David Warren Pipes in from Up North

UPDATE II: Joanne at Egregious Twaddle on being Catholic, liberal and American during a most illiberal time — it’s a good, thoughtful and honest read. Highly recommend!

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About Elizabeth Scalia