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Mixed Catholic reaction to revised White House contraception plan
New York Archbishop Timothy Dolan, whom President Barack Obama called Friday morning.
February 10th, 2012
12:28 PM ET

Mixed Catholic reaction to revised White House contraception plan

By Eric Marrapodi CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Washington (CNN) - As word trickled out of a White House compromise with Catholic groups on its rule around contraception coverage on Friday morning, administration officials took to the phones to sell the plan to religious leaders across the spectrum.

Catholic officials say President Obama called New York Archbishop Timothy Dolan, President of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops, to explain the revised policy, which exempts religiously affiliated universities and hospitals for paying for no cost contraception for their employees but requires insurers to offer such coverage for for free to women who work at such institutions.

Dolan responded to the White House plan Friday afternoon in a statement saying the move was, "a first step in the right direction."

“While there may be an openness to respond to some of our concerns, we reserve judgment on the details until we have them," he added.

But other bishops were far more critical. "I think he's punting, just kicking the can down the road," Miami Archbishop Thomas Wenski told CNN. "He's hasn't really addressed our concerns.  I think the only thing to do is... to take back the whole thing."

After hanging up with Obama Friday morning, Dolan quickly organized a conference call with other bishops nationwide, according to a source briefed on the calls. It's yet to be seen how the Catholic Church will greet the revised White House policy, but some conservative religious voices say they're not satisfied.

CNN's Belief Blog – all the faith angles to the day's top stories

Wenski said the Miami Archdiocese pays an insurance company to cover its 5,000 employees and argued that if the insurance company is paying for and providing contraceptives, as the new compromise lays out, the church would still be paying for it.

"They're missing the point when they say this is about contraception," he said. "This is about religious freedom.  It's a sham to say contraception aren't widely available in this country."

But some Catholic groups applauded the White House announcement. Sister Carol Keehan from the Catholic Health Association said she is"very pleased" with the White House.

"Folks were extremely grateful for this," said James Salt, who heads the progressive group Catholics United, which is close to the White House.

Salt was on a White House call to religious leaders Friday morning that was led by Joshua DuBios, director of Obama's Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships.

"This is a solution that can be universally celebrated," Salt said. " There were groups on the call that have a very pro-choice world view and there was no dissent... We're putting out a full-throated endorsement of this."

Stephen Schneck, a professor from Catholic University who has advised the administration in the past, is also pleased with the new HHS policy.  "There was great enthusiasm on the call, a real sense of relief," he said, referring to the conference call with DuBois.

"I think [the administration] finally got it as a result of the fire storm...the religious liberty concerns, that's what turned the policy makers," he said.  "The level of solidarity with the bishops  in seeing this as a religious liberty issue is what I think turned the day."

In recent weeks, religious leaders loudly lobbied the White House on its plan to make religious institutions offer free contraception to employees through health insurance plans. Evangelicals and conservative Jews joined with Catholics in saying the policy was an intrusion of religious liberty.

"As long as the Obama portrayed this as a contraception issue they had a chance to win the pr battle," said Richard Land, head of public policy for the Southern Baptist Convention.  Despite the compromise, Land said the damage has been done.

"It'll be devastating with Catholics," he said, arguing that the president has "shown what he really believes."

The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, which brought three lawsuits in federal court against the policy, denounced the White House change Friday as an “accounting gimmick.”

Becket said the new compromise doesn’t address the private religious groups and others who object the policy and still view the new policy as them paying for contraceptives, albeit through an insurer.

“Hundreds, if not thousands, of religious institutions are still left out in the cold and will be forced to violate their religious convictions,” said Hannah Smith, senior legal counsel for the Becket Fund, in a statement.

An administration official said the White House will convene meetings with religious leaders in coming days and that “this policy will be developed collaboratively so that the ultimate outcome works for religious employers, their workers and the public.”

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Barack Obama • Belief • Bishops • Catholic Church • Church and state • Politics

soundoff (2,082 Responses)
  1. marc

    TC – where in my post do I mention government or relate it to the conversation? Sure, the article is about government forcing religious run bodies to offer contraception to their employees – please tell me what is wrong with this? You cannot tell me the churches are not businesses, that's complete bull. Churches and the "the" church are nothing but in the business of teaching faith. If the chuch tomorrow said that abortion was ok, then it would be ok, if they said it was ok to kill your own children, then it would be ok? Who is controlling their followers here more? the people that support government, or those that support the chaos and control of the church? Remember, it was the catholic church that killed citizens because they accused them of witch craft; seriously, what is that? It's time people of religion woke up and jumped on board with reality, and stop being so hypocritical of the 20% of the US who claim themselves to be athiest. 20%, the largest minority of people in the US; we consist of the most educated doctors, scientists and engineers. The largest population of those that believe in Jesus are the 50% of Americans who pay no taxes, have no education, and cant even get a job at McDonalds.

    February 11, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
    • TC

      Mainly you have no facts to back up your numbers and it is just your opinion. I have a Masters and work with many PhD scinetists. We all have jobs and mnay are believers – in all kinds of religions. Polls and statistics are usually worthless. Many believers out there.

      February 11, 2012 at 4:31 pm |
    • marc

      I implemented the 300 servers that housed census data in the 2010 count – we developed and installed the system back in 2007. 20% of Americans claim to be athiest which overlaps with 85% that consider themselves Christian, showing that even Christians consider themsleves athiest too. I happen to be Jewish, but I am secular, thus athiest. There was no check box for athiest, but it is assumed that 20% of americans claim to be. 50% of Americans pay no taxes because they make far less then the other 50%. So if 50% of the 85% of americans claiming to be christian are not paying taxes, its very safe to say that a majority of them are christian, right? doesnt take a phd to figure that one out buddy...

      February 11, 2012 at 4:37 pm |
    • really?

      How laughable! Earlier you worked at an insurance company that you have at for 20 years. Which you claimed made you the know all end all on the subject matter!
      1 more thing! 99% of scientist believe your religion is garbage! No scientist will tell you that man lived along side the dinasaurs!
      the earth is 13 million yrs old! Not 4-5000 yrs.
      Wow you really should have paid attention to some of those top notch scientist you worked with.

      February 11, 2012 at 4:38 pm |
    • TC

      you developed an opinion by surmising a correlation to a set of unrelated facts – i.e. you are using statistics to serve your point. You should go into politics. Don't need a high school diploma to figure this out.

      February 11, 2012 at 4:40 pm |
    • marc

      really? the earth is 4 billion years old +. but yes, certainly not 5000, since the hebrew calendar is in its 5773rd year.

      February 11, 2012 at 4:40 pm |
    • TC

      really? Do you think maybe, just maybe that someone else can use "TC" and post in this forum? This TC never stated I work for an ins co. are you really? thinking before posting, really?

      February 11, 2012 at 4:42 pm |
    • TC

      really? – another point that you are ignorant. Catholics and most other Christinans do not believe in a 5000 yr old earth and man walked with dinosaurs. Why are you here? What do you really know about religion?

      February 11, 2012 at 4:45 pm |
  2. Easy E

    You can either have an epidemic of murder (abortion) or you can prevent it altogether by allowing women to have control over their fertility. Why the church would prefer to enable abortionists the world over with their idiotic stance on contraception is totally beyond me.

    February 11, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
    • TC

      The theology behind the use of contraception is not a simple issue. One has to study Catholicism to at least try to understand it. Most Catholics don't knw enough to have an educated opinon

      February 11, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
    • marc

      ding ding ding ding ding ding ding!!!!

      February 11, 2012 at 4:38 pm |
  3. Easy E

    TC, if you are the product of the religion you are defending, then I would say it speaks volumes about how said religion emphasizes symbology and ritual and very little about uplifting fellow human beings.

    February 11, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
    • TC

      When it comes to education, medical and helping the poor the Catholic Church has done more than any other organization throughout history. The rituals and symbology are traditional and mainly used in celbration of the Holy Sacrifice of Mass. There is so much to the Catholic Church that that non Catholics understand about .0000001 percent and Catholics maybe 25%

      February 11, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  4. really?

    Tv you come in here pretending like youre mature enough to handle an adult conversation. But the second someone disagrees with you, you result to name calling! What are the names you would call the pedophiles of your church? Or their leaders who covered it up for many many centuries? Maybe you should unleash your bitter anger on them!

    February 11, 2012 at 4:10 pm |
    • TC

      Interesting your interpretation. Who did I call a name and what was it? Again – failed agenda #1 – slander the believer then cry bigotry and hatred. Next.

      February 11, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
    • really?

      Well for one you called me "ignorant" and "unenlightened" read your own post dude!
      I dont expect you to remember things, cuz clearly you already forgotten all the children the catholic churches molested, then protected the molesters. Now my question to you would be. Sis you forget that, or is that just something not worthy of your consideration?

      February 11, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
    • TC

      Ignorant is not name calling – means you don't know anout a certain subject. Just becuase I support faith in Jesus, why would I not have a problem with molesters?

      February 11, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  5. Mike Buck

    No TC. Is that your response, love it or leave it?

    February 11, 2012 at 3:58 pm |
    • TC

      Is that your response Mike Buck – do nothing about it and leave it becasue its too difficult and the grass is greener somewhere else?

      February 11, 2012 at 4:01 pm |
    • Mike Buck

      You are the one advocating leaving. I said nothing of the sort. Try to follow along.

      February 11, 2012 at 4:11 pm |
    • Fallacy Spotting 101

      Post by TC is an instance of the ad hominem fallacy.

      http://www.iep.utm.edu/fallacy/#H6

      February 11, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
    • really?

      Thats funny there TC ol' boy! The tactics you are accusing mike of using. Is exactly what you at doing! You in bad need of a mirror, and a good shrink! Pray for those things maybe you'll get going in the right direction!

      February 11, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
    • TC

      I follow along quite well, bloak. Read first then write. I asked you if you were leaving, I never said I was leaving.

      February 11, 2012 at 4:15 pm |
    • TC

      Again, why are you here? This topic and story no way affects you and you are an atheist with irrelevant comments for a topic of faith. You are here to cause upheaval – nothing else. Admit it and at least I could possibly respect you for that.

      February 11, 2012 at 4:18 pm |
    • Mike Buck

      TC. My response to you was
      No TC. That means "No I'm not leaving." Once again , try to follow along.

      February 11, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
    • really?

      Ahh! TC? This is about your pathetic perverted religion. This is about civil liberties!. So why are you here? Isn't there a serman at the Westborough church you should be attending? Don't you have a soldiers funeral to protest?

      February 11, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
    • TC

      A funeral to protest? Where do you get that. I served 22 years in uniform, I don't you ever have.

      February 11, 2012 at 4:32 pm |
  6. marc

    So true what most of you are saying. Teaching religion, all religion, to our children is the problem. Religion is what holds our society back from true progress – sort of the stopgate for evolution. While modern society has pretty much prevented the human race from evolving as many isolated species still do today, we've been held back from medical and scientific advances to improve the human race. In the end, it all comes down to education. If we teach out children to follow the bible, they will continue to fight over who is right, Jews, Muslims, Christians/Catholics, will all continue to murder each other in the name of god. If there was no religion, this simply would not be the case and our brains wouldn't be held back by fake beliefs and we could progress into a better world for all human kind.

    February 11, 2012 at 3:57 pm |
    • Sid

      Bingo. We have a winner.

      February 11, 2012 at 4:02 pm |
    • TC

      I will agree with your point about teaching "religion". Failure to teach faith and the spiritual connectedness of us all and seek personal pleasure. Read history – you will find it littered with failed governments who sought only themselves. US is up to bat next.

      February 11, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
    • Fallacy Spotting 101

      Post by TC is an instance of a Quibbling fallacy.

      http://www.iep.utm.edu/fallacy/#H6

      February 11, 2012 at 4:08 pm |
    • TC

      Rather than link posting and stating opinon, try communicating your point in facts.

      February 11, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
    • marc

      TC – where in my post do I mention government or relate it to the conversation? Sure, the article is about government forcing religious run bodies to offer contraception to their employees – please tell me what is wrong with this? You cannot tell me the churches are not businesses, that's complete bull. Churches and the "the" church are nothing but in the business of teaching faith. If the chuch tomorrow said that abortion was ok, then it would be ok, if they said it was ok to kill your own children, then it would be ok? Who is controlling their followers here more? the people that support government, or those that support the chaos and control of the church? Remember, it was the catholic church that killed citizens because they accused them of witch craft; seriously, what is that? It's time people of religion woke up and jumped on board with reality, and stop being so hypocritical of the 20% of the US who claim themselves to be athiest. 20%, the largest minority of people in the US; we consist of the most educated doctors, scientists and engineers. The largest population of those that believe in Jesus are the 50% of Americans who pay no taxes, have no education, and cant even get a job at McDonalds.

      February 11, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
    • really?

      TC the difference between the govt. And the church. Is we control the govt. The church controls you! Its not a hard concept to follow if you just give it a try!

      February 11, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  7. Mike Buck

    To TC...What is your stand when members of a Religious Hierarchy bugger young children and those in charge cover it up?

    February 11, 2012 at 3:52 pm |
    • TC

      Same as every other good human being. Wrong and hold the evil doers accountable. What's your stance on eveil governments and evil politicians who are putting our country in the toilets? Gonna leave your country anytime soon becasue its corrupt?

      February 11, 2012 at 3:55 pm |
  8. TC

    really? and honestly use the same standard tactic all religion haters and many athests use – slander others religious beliefs and then cry that others are bigoted and hateful. This tactic works on idiots not people who actually use their brains.

    February 11, 2012 at 3:50 pm |
    • really?

      If you actually used your brain, you wouldn't be religious! So your point is without merit!

      February 11, 2012 at 3:56 pm |
    • Eric G

      Off topic, but it's a slow news day so I will play along.

      I make no attempt to slander your religion. I only ask you to provide verifiable evidence that your god exists. Without this evidencial support, any claim of knowledge made regarding the intentions, actions or desires of your god are fiction.

      if you wish to continue this discussion, you must first provide your evidence for verification. Failure to do so is intellectually dishonest.

      February 11, 2012 at 3:57 pm |
    • TC

      Eric – you employ the typical failed atheist agenda of proving your point becasue the other cannot prove theirs. Atheist agenda and tactics are some of the absolute worst intellectual attempts. Faith is a personal and spiritual experience that no one can prove to another.

      February 11, 2012 at 4:00 pm |
    • Fallacy Spotting 101

      Post by TC contains instances of the ad hominem fallacy and the circ-umstantial ad hominem fallacy.

      February 11, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
    • TC

      If you actually understood the definition you woudl know that I did not come close to perpetrating an ad hominem fallacy

      February 11, 2012 at 4:08 pm |
    • Fallacy Spotting 101

      Post by TC is a veiled form of the ad hominem fallacy.

      http://www.iep.utm.edu/fallacy/#H6

      February 11, 2012 at 4:10 pm |
    • TC

      a link poster! and now its veiled? ok – so we will all trust your opinions. I think not. Use facts not your opinions for fallacy spotting

      February 11, 2012 at 4:11 pm |
    • Eric G

      @TC: You are correct. You have not proved your point because you have presented no supporting evidence for verification. I do congratulate you as the only "believer" I have ever spoken with on this blog who understands that the burden of proof lies with those making a claim that a god exists.

      Unfortunately, it is your responsibility to provide this proof. Please let me know when you are ready to discuss in a mature manner.

      February 11, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
    • Fallacy Spotting 101

      Post by TC again is an instance of the ad hominem fallacy.

      http://www.iep.utm.edu/fallacy/#H6

      February 11, 2012 at 4:15 pm |
    • TC

      Anytime you want to debate on FACTS absolutley. Again, your belief is not proof either and you have no evidence – so what's your point.

      February 11, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
    • really?

      Tc? I think Eric invited you to an open discussion already. Your time to make your argument is now? So put up, or shut up!

      February 11, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
    • Eric G

      @TC: Facts? Please present any verifiable evidence that your god exists. When you have a hypothesis, evidence is examined and verified that will either support or conflict with your hypothesis. If you have enough verified supporting evidence for your hypothesis, it then becomes a theory.

      Again, the burden of proof lies with those making a claim. It does not require "belief" to reject your hypothesis that your god exists because you have presented no verifiable evidence in support of your claim.

      Please do not confuse disagreement with disrespect. I would very much like to have a discussion about this topic, but you must first provide a platform for your position that is based on the very facts you claim to have. If you cannot comply with this most basic of requests, I suggest you stay in the shallow end of the pool while the adults swim.

      February 11, 2012 at 7:54 pm |
  9. Mike Buck

    To Catholic Church; You have NO RIGHT to interfere with health issues of our citizens. Please give back the billions in government money that you receive and start paying taxes!

    February 11, 2012 at 3:50 pm |
    • TC

      Yeah like your noble and benveolent governemnt is spending our money so wisely. What are you smoking? Religions have no business contributing to a corrupt goverment.

      February 11, 2012 at 3:57 pm |
  10. TC

    The failed argument of "why do decent Christians support a Church who has committed atrocities" is no different than why you as an American continue to vote for evil person after evil person and pay taxes to support a corrupt government. Practice what you preach and leave the country.

    February 11, 2012 at 3:47 pm |
    • really?

      Tv is it? Or Michelle? Or athiesm=cancer? Wait we covered this already. Its mr. Bigot!
      1st of all who I vote for is none of your business. Second of you try to do exactly what your church does. Make people follow what you believe, and when they don, you condemn them! and if your such a devout Christian maybe you should leave the country! THE VATICAN IS THAT WAY ->

      February 11, 2012 at 3:54 pm |
    • TC

      as typical – a non-sensical post from you – see my comment above.

      February 11, 2012 at 3:56 pm |
    • Mike Buck

      Then religions should not take money from the government either.

      February 11, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
    • TC

      DOnt know where you live but the Catholic Church in the US does not receive money from government.

      February 11, 2012 at 4:10 pm |
    • Fallacy Spotting 101

      Post by TC is a False Analogy.

      http://www.iep.utm.edu/fallacy/#H6

      February 11, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
    • Mike Buck

      TC – Wrong again! Catholic Church hospitals receive tons of cash in subsidies.

      February 11, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  11. Easy E

    It's one thing to have religious freedom, another to be an employer who tries to force everyone in their employ to follow strict religious orthodoxy. The church should be held to the same standards as any other employer – period. Evil in the name of religion is still evil.

    February 11, 2012 at 3:46 pm |
    • TC

      Can't force a religion to go against its beliefs – that's the whole point. What didn't you get about the topic?

      February 11, 2012 at 3:48 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      The Bible says it's okay to own slaves.

      February 11, 2012 at 3:57 pm |
    • really?

      Tc its actually the other way around! Its your religious churches pushing their beliefs on civilians! Before they do that maybe they should get there own followers to adhere to their rules. And considering 98% of Christian women use contraceptives, thats just not gonna happen!
      Are you setting down? Good cuz I got more news for you! The world really is round! And your church can no longer put people to death for saying that! Woohoo!

      February 11, 2012 at 4:02 pm |
  12. pragmatic

    A lot of you are failing to draw a distinction between the Catholic Church and rank-and-file Catholics. I'm agnostic, but I have to acknowledge that there a *lot* of Catholics who take the teaching of Jesus seriously when it comes to caring for the poor, compassion, etc. A majority of them support the President's position. They aren't the enemy.

    Compare this to Southern evangelicals, for instance, who twist themselves into knots trying to explain why Jesus would be a pro-war, anti-welfare junk bond dealer were he walking the earth today ...

    February 11, 2012 at 3:24 pm |
    • really?

      Where was their caring and compassion when children were being molested. The fact that they still go, and support this is mind blowing!
      If any other organization, lets say like planned parenthood, would have done things like this, they would have been immediately shut down!

      February 11, 2012 at 3:29 pm |
    • HONESTLY!

      It doesn't matter what or where the church is located. Thats just geography. The point is they push these bag of lies on innocent people. Why not shelter kids from this madness, until they are adults, and then let them decide for their selves if they choose to buy into this madness?

      February 11, 2012 at 3:33 pm |
    • pragmatic

      Don't want to sound snarky, but if you read the post you replied to, you would see I'm suggesting people need to be careful to draw a distinction between Catholics and the Catholic *Church*. Some of the most fierce criticism to the pedophilia scandal has come from rank-and-file Catholics who are understandably disgusted with the Church hierarchy.

      If liberals want to claim to be fair-minded and to understand the nuance and complexity of tough societal issues (which I hope we can do), then little things like failing to distinguish between the Catholic Church and Catholic people are important.

      February 11, 2012 at 3:35 pm |
    • really?

      Ok, the church committed the crimes, and the followers give them money and therefore support their actions. Im sorry, but I can't understand how anyone can support either of them.

      February 11, 2012 at 3:39 pm |
    • really?

      Let me say this as well! I do believe that there are decent Christians, who feel they are doing the right thing. I do not believe all Christians are bad inherently. I do however think that teaching this nonsense to children, or even having children around this madness, is detrimental to society. And needs to be stopped. And its not just Christianity, but all religions!

      February 11, 2012 at 3:42 pm |
    • TC

      you really? have a lot to learn. Your simplistic comments over the faith and belief of human kind highlights your ignorance and lack of life experience

      February 11, 2012 at 3:44 pm |
    • marc

      yes. it's quite disgusting how we're trying to offer contraception to those that want it and the church cries that this is against their beliefs.. makes no sense.. time to get back to reality where we believe in each other and do what's right for society, not the church that killed people in the name of control and wrote a book, manipulated it, and then called it a religion.

      February 11, 2012 at 3:45 pm |
    • TC

      The failed argument of "why do decent Christinas support a Church who has committed atrocities" is no different than why you as an American continue to vote for evil person after evil person and pay taxes to support a corrupt government. Practice what you preach and leave the country.

      February 11, 2012 at 3:46 pm |
  13. HONESTLY

    if prayer worked, I would pray everyday to end religion! But it's fruitless, as prayer changes nothing!

    February 11, 2012 at 3:11 pm |
    • TC

      Honestly – Why are you even here? This is a debate for the faithful. Never understand why atheists feel compelled to go somewhere where their opinion is virtually irrelevant

      February 11, 2012 at 3:43 pm |
    • HONESTLY!

      Well I guess I could say god had be come here, but then I would be acting like you, a bigot!
      However im here because of the important issue at hand. I know you would like for me to just go away. But I can't do that... You see im here voicing my opinions just as you are. And because I have a right to do that. Even though your church would like to stop me. But all they can do is pray that I go away. And that is just not going to work for them. As I've stated before prayer doesn't work! Sorry!

      February 11, 2012 at 3:49 pm |
    • I_get_it

      TC,

      As long as the words White House and government and law and public policy and such are in the mix, we are concerned.

      You won't likely find us debating the proper color of altar cloths on truly internal churchy discussions.

      February 11, 2012 at 3:51 pm |
  14. HONESTLY

    I see the bigots are still posting their ridiculous empty arguments.

    February 11, 2012 at 3:05 pm |
    • really?

      Ugghh! Yeah and they've (he's) been super hateful today!

      February 11, 2012 at 3:20 pm |
  15. really?

    Why does the church want to take us down the same path we've already been. We had this women/contraception vs churches/and bigots already. They lost 40 years ago, and will lose again. I guess it's the insanity factor that goes along with being religious. Repeating the same thing over and over again, but expecting a different result everytime! Cracks me up!

    February 11, 2012 at 3:02 pm |
  16. really?

    Jesus said, GOD PLEASE PROTECT ME FROM YOUR FOLLOWERS, FOR THEY DO NOT UNDERSTAND COMPASSION!

    February 11, 2012 at 2:45 pm |
  17. really?

    GET OUT OF MY WOMB AND SHUT THE DOOR!
    TAX ALL CHURCHES AND RELIGIOUS ORGANIZATION?
    CAN I GET A HALLELUJAH?

    February 11, 2012 at 2:43 pm |
    • Interested48

      Yes, and an Amen!

      February 11, 2012 at 2:57 pm |
    • marc

      WTH are you talking about? All we're trying to do here is offer contraception to women who want it or need it; what happened to equality here?

      Educatoin is the real issue here, but why do we continue to focus on these trivial issues. What is so wrong for insurance companies to have to provide coverage for contraception if people want it or need it? There is nothing wrong with preventing unwanted pregnancies. This is GOOD for society. It keeps populations low enough so we can educate them, and get out of this mess that if you asked me, is created by religious bodies that force their beliefs on others who have gotten away from them, and closer to reality.

      February 11, 2012 at 3:37 pm |
    • marc

      I replied to the wrong person... Yes, you get an amen from me – churches are in the business of control, not the government. All you have to do is watch the repulican primaries to know that these baboons are influenced by religion, and not issues that actually matter.

      I agree with you really, really i do... obama doesnt need to be stopped, religion does.

      February 11, 2012 at 3:42 pm |
  18. ATHEISM = CANCER

    Reasons why Atheism is TERRIBLE and unhealthy for our children and living things!

    † Atheism makes you stupid, ignorant & blind.
    † Atheism is a disease that needs to be treated.
    † Atheism makes you post stupid things.
    † Atheist are satanic and have gothic lifestyle.
    † Atheists causes problem in our religious society.
    † Atheists are mentally ill, that's why they have no faith.
    † Atheism won't take you to kingdom of heaven and paradise.
    † Atheism making you agree with Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot & other terrible mass murder leaders.
    † No traditional family lifestyle, boring and feeling 'outsider'
    † Atheists are angry, alcoholics and committ the most crime.
    † Atheist try to convert people over internet because they feel "safer" behind closet.
    † Atheists do not really exist, they just pretend that they don't believe in God and argue with religious people.
    † Atheists have had terrible life experience, bad childhood and not being loved.
    † Most Atheists are uneducated... No Atheists could run for presidency.
    † Atheism brought upon the French Revolution, one of the most evil events of all of history.
    † Atheism cannot explain the origins of the universe, therefore God exists.
    † All atheists believe in evolution, which means they don't believe in morality and think we should all act like animals.
    † The Bible says atheism is wrong, and the Bible is always right (see: Genesis 1:1, Psalms 14:1, Psalms 19:1, Romans 1:19-20)
    † Atheism have no holidays, no culture, no nothing. Waste of living in this planet...

    †† Our Prayers goes to Atheists to be mentally healthy and seek their creator ††

    February 11, 2012 at 2:30 pm |
    • really?

      Reason why religion is harmful to the public!
      1.) religion is based on a book written by man! Thus it is not the word of god. But the word of man with an intelligence ratio from 2000 years ago!
      2). They’re murderers!
      3). They’re rapist
      4). They’re pedophiles
      5). They’re thieves
      Need more, is that not enough for you dumbazz? You are the disease of the human race! And need to be cured! If you're against contraception then just keep your mouth out of the conversation. Cuz everytime you open it, you reveal another good reason for it! I guess your mother doing the rhythm method didnt work so much for her, huh? Otherwise we wouldn't your dumbazz in here spewing lies!

      February 11, 2012 at 2:35 pm |
    • marc

      What are you blabbing about? How does not worshipping a fictional character of one’s imagination that they use to explain for naturally occurring phenomenon make us ignorant? You, my friend, need to replace Atheism in your post with "religious followers." If you did that, your post would be 100% accurate.

      February 11, 2012 at 2:55 pm |
  19. Apa

    WARNING WARNING WARNING!!!!!

    Really?

    is the biggest troll. Don't pay attention to him, Don't comment on his posts and he will get tired and leave 😀
    He's hated by his family, so he's protected under mommys computer

    February 11, 2012 at 2:30 pm |
    • really?

      Awe! Im honored you think of me as your greatest threat, you little macadamian nutbag!
      You're just upset I keep calling you out on your ridiculous lies! And I will continue to do so. Mostly cuz youre a vile disgusting, child molesting supporter!
      Pray for a little sense you goon!

      February 11, 2012 at 2:39 pm |
    • HONESTLY

      Ok? Let me make sure I got this reasoning correct! If you are hated by your family, then your computer will protect you? Thats good to know. Thanks for enlightening us on this truly secret security measure.

      February 11, 2012 at 3:16 pm |
  20. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer really changes things
    Prayer really changes lives

    February 11, 2012 at 2:26 pm |
    • HONESTLY

      Seems to me your churches have been praying for thousands of years to get rid of athiest, and it hasn't happened yet. When will you get a clue that your sky daddy doesn't exist. And join the rest of us that know you dont need a church or magical thinking to be a decent human being?

      February 11, 2012 at 3:09 pm |
    • marc

      This coming from the same church that burnt citizens at the stake by order of the pope back during the black plague because they thought that the snow storms were created by witch craft. Religion is as ridiculous and much of the problem today as it was when it was formed under false pretenses to control people.

      You say government is control? What do you say about the church that killed those that did not convert from their beliefs to yours? Hypocrites, every last one of you are.

      February 11, 2012 at 3:31 pm |
    • really?

      Exactly right Mark!

      February 11, 2012 at 3:36 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.