It’s still hard for me to believe that in light of the sluggish economic recovery, ongoing worries over jobs and mounting home foreclosures that most Americans are interested in a protracted discussion over access to contraceptives.
Yet here we are. The issue simply will not go away, chiefly because some misguided clergy won’t let it die.
The U.S. House of Representatives today is holding a hearing on “religious liberty.” Only it’s not a hearing on religious liberty – it’s a hearing about giving powerful religious groups the right to impose their theology on anyone in sight.
If Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback and Lt. Gov. Jeff Coyler get their way, it will be legal to discriminate against gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender persons in the state – as long as you do it in the name of religion.
A Lawrence, Kan., ordinance that offers broader protections against discrimination than state laws, prevents outright forms of bias. But a bill being considered by the Kansas House of Representatives, HB 2260, would overturn that ordinance.
Who gets to decide how you run your life: you or a small group of aggressive religious leaders?
In a nation that separates religion and government, the answer ought to be easy. Apparently it’s not.
Every morning, it seems, I pick up The Washington Post and read another article or column about President Barack Obama’s decision to require employers to provide free coverage of birth control in their health insurance plans.
The move, announced on Jan. 20 by the Department of Health and Human Services, has sparked some controversy because, while it exempts houses of worship, it doesn’t exempt church-related institutions. Thus, church-owned hospitals, colleges and other entities will have to buy insurance plans for their employees that include contraceptive coverage.
I know that there are thoughtful conservative commentators in the world, but I do have to wonder why, when it comes to issues of religion and church-state separation, so many of them go off the deep end.
Consider Michael Gerson. The former speechwriter for President George W. Bush is now a syndicated columnist, and, while I don’t agree with much of what he says, he sometimes writes columns that make me think.
Note: Today is the federal observance of Dr. Martin Luther King's birthday. This blog post is a re-publication on an item that originally appeared on Jan. 13, 2006.
Today marks the federal observance of Dr. Martin Luther King's birthday. Since his tragic assassination on April 4, 1968, King's memory has been pressed into service in highly unusual ways that King himself would not have supported.
As the nation pauses to remember civil rights leader this year, it's a good time to take a look at what this great American leader really thought about church-state issues.