It’s certainly understandable…

It’s certainly understandable… March 6, 2012

that the first line of defense against the Obama Administration’s attempt to force the Church to support contraceptive and abortifacients should focus on the fact that it is an assault on religious liberty. Our culture is (selectively) more interested in freedom (or rather the tyranny of the imperial autonomous self) than it is in life. So the first attempt to appeal to that culture (and a perfectly valid one) was to say, “If you value your own freedom then don’t let the state trample the freedom of others.”

But, of course, the danger of that is twofold.

First, suppose the majority of Americans are too blind and stupid to grasp that an assault on the freedom of people who have different values is a threat against their own freedom. It appears that this may be the case, just as it was the case that conservative torture enthusiasts were largely incapable of grasping that the state which tortures foreigners will eventually torture citizens and just as abortion enthusiasts are yet incapable of grasping that a culture which murders its children will one day murder them when they are also weak and unproductive.

But in addition to this, there is another problem: namely that framing the whole matter of contraception as *solely* a religious liberty issue overlooks the fact that contraception is *morally* wrong (meaning harmful to human persons, not merely a sort of ritually impure act like eating pork would be for a Jew). In failing to make that case, we run the risk of making opposition to contraception a mere “Catholic thing” instead of showing that it is, in fact, an anti-human thing. Thaddeus Kozinski has more on that.

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