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Catholic bishops launch religious liberty campaign
Cardinal Donald Wuerl, archbishop of Washington, sings at a Fortnight for Freedom event Sunday in Washington.
June 25th, 2012
03:53 PM ET

Catholic bishops launch religious liberty campaign

By Becky Perlow, CNN

Washington (CNN) -  The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops has launched a two-week crusade against what it calls the federal government's violations of its religious liberty.

The campaign, known as the Fortnight for Freedom, is about “prayer, education and action,” said Cardinal Donald Wuerl, archbishop of Washington, in an interview Sunday with CNN.

The campaign, to conclude on Independence Day, has drawn support from Catholic parishioners across the nation, who have held religious rallies, prayer vigils and weekly mass to raise awareness for a new health care mandate the church opposes.

“We’re here to pray. We’re here to educate about freedom. We started this campaign to say religious liberty is eroding,” said Wuerl before a rally Sunday afternoon at George Washington University in Washington.

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According to the Catholic bishops' website, the days leading up to July Fourth will “celebrate a series of great martyrs who remained faithful in the face of persecution by political power,” including Sir Thomas More, John the Baptist and Saints Peter and Paul.

In recent months, the U.S. Catholic Church has expressed concern over the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' proposed contraception mandate, which requires insurance companies for Catholic-affiliated institutions such as hospitals and universities to provide free contraceptive coverage - including, the church says, sterilizations and drugs that could cause abortions - to employees, in violation of Catholic teachings on social issues.

The White House has pushed back against accusations it is curtailing religious liberty. The administration is proposing an exemption for the mandate for churches, but the plan recently lost support from the Catholic Health Association, once the administration's most powerful Catholic ally on the mandate.

Wuerl said the church campaign is not about politics or the controversial mandate. Instead, he said it’s about the government’s attempt to infringe on religious liberty.

John Paul Beller, 14, prays alongside Nicky Morrison, 17, at Sunday's rally.

In an online letter last month to congregants, Wuerl said the scope of the mandate's exception is so narrow that not even Mother Teresa would have qualified.

“The First Amendment enshrines in our nation's Constitution the principle that religious organizations must be able to practice their faith free from government interference,” he said in a letter posted on the Diocese of Washington’s website.

He added, “To be clear, that is the message that the HHS mandate conveys: our beliefs are not welcome.”

Joseph Palacios, director of the Catholics for Equality Foundation, said the church can't play the victimhood card because it receives substantial funds from federal and state governments.

“If the bishops want exemption from the law,” said Palacios in a recent statement, “then they should stop receiving taxpayer funding."

Wuerl, however, insists the money is not a gift - rather, it is an exchange of services between the Catholic Church and the federal government, so there should be no strings attached.

“The government comes to us and says, ‘We would like you to (care) for the homeless (and run) a shelter,’ ” Wuerl said.

“(But) we’re not living off the dole - we’re being paid for something we do," Wuerl said. "But this new mandate goes far beyond that. We don’t get money for our schools. We don’t get money for most of the things that go on in our social service ministries and parishes. We don’t get money for a lot of what we, as Catholic churches, do.”

Wuerl said the church can’t do these good works so long as the contraception mandate includes exemptions only for churches, as opposed to all religiously affiliated institutions.


A woman prays with her rosary at the event in Washington.

For the remainder of the campaign, dioceses across the country will focus on what speaks to their individual community members most, said Chieko Noguchi Scheve, director of media and public relations for the Archdiocese of Washington.

The Diocese of Austin, Texas, for example, has encouraged all Catholics to pray with their rosary beads for the two-week period, while the Diocese of Las Vegas has posted a fill-in-the-blank letter on its website in the hope that parishioners will share their displeasure about the mandate with their U.S. representatives.

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At the Sunday rally, Wuerl stood before a crowd of nearly 2,000, according to a diocese estimate, encouraging audience members that although there was a time to be on their knees - namely, “in the presence of the Lord" - this was not one of them.

Wuerl said it was a time for Catholics to stand up for who they are.

“Today we’re simply reminded as we look back over our history and we look back over our freedom, that there are some things worth standing for,” he told the audience inside George Washington University’s Charles E. Smith Center.

“There’s some things worth getting up for, and religious liberty is one of them," he said. "My brothers and sisters, we simply need to stand.”

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief • Bishops • Catholic Church • Christianity

soundoff (171 Responses)
  1. junior

    So many misinformed individuals. I recommend the following site for clarification:
    http://www.usccb.org/issues-and-action/religious-liberty/our-first-most-cherished-liberty.cfm

    June 25, 2012 at 7:36 pm |
    • b4bigbang

      US health care is an industry with many hospitals being privately-owned. While there are govt regs and controls, i dont think the govt has the right to order a private health-provider to offer birth-control, abortion, etc., just as the govt doesnt have the right to order hospitals to provide elective cosmetic surgery and other elective procedures.
      Same applies to insurance providers.

      June 25, 2012 at 7:59 pm |
  2. sixpointnineme

    Health care has nothing to do with religious belief. If you do not accept medical care that is based on evidence, because of a personal belief that is your right, but you can't impose that belief upon others. The employee should decide if a treatment is within his belief system and not his church.

    June 25, 2012 at 6:59 pm |
    • JWT

      or even worse – someone else's church decides.

      June 25, 2012 at 7:09 pm |
      • sixpointnineme

        True, that could be worse.

        June 25, 2012 at 7:11 pm |
  3. Father Bob, acquited

    Wait a munute – the exact same clergy that ran the obstruction-of-justice hide-the-perv-priest part of the abuse scandal, the ones who moved the priests and allowed them to continue instead of dealing with them effectively and immediately, these self-same guys are trying to demand political protection for one of their counterproductive superstitions?

    Scumbags.

    June 25, 2012 at 6:48 pm |
  4. ProudExCatholic

    It's ironic that the Catholic Church is whining about "religious freedom". When I was in Catholic elementary school, the nuns insisted that, if you were baptized Catholic, and left the church for whatever reason (which I did many years ago), you would burn in hell forever. According to the CC you have no freedom of religion, unless it's on their terms. I watch in amusement, as this Medieval cancer on humanity, steadily self destructs.

    June 25, 2012 at 6:48 pm |
    • albert f. maas

      I'm with you !

      June 25, 2012 at 7:55 pm |
    • sam stone

      It sure is inspiring seeing the good father belt out a Village People song.

      June 25, 2012 at 9:17 pm |
  5. Jimmy G.

    These bishops are wasting everyone's time and money in a bid for criminal "freedom" that violates the religious freedoms of their employees.
    This is a sham, a distraction. The RCC is desperate to keep their trillions of dollars out of the hands of their victims.

    June 25, 2012 at 6:44 pm |
  6. sam

    "You've confused a war on your religion with not always getting everything you want. It's called being part of a society. Not everything goes your way."

    -Jon Stewart

    June 25, 2012 at 6:19 pm |
  7. PrimeNumber

    Once again: walk into a drug store – Walgreen, CVS, etc. What do three long isles display? Lipstic, lip gloss, fingernail polish, remover for same, base, foundation, rouge, eye shadow, eye liner, body wash, hair conditioners, countless varieties of shampoo, mirrors, eye liner pencils, powders, perfumes, scented soaps, and on. What's a trip to the hair stylist cost? The girls keep a billion-dollar cosmetic industry going to pay for their "look". Yet if anyone balks at paying for birth control pills, it's a war on women.

    June 25, 2012 at 5:07 pm |
    • The Real World

      What, you want to deny them make-up too? That post made absolutely no sense.

      If you use ignorant ancient peasant superstitions as the basis of your decision-making process, you will get very weird ideas like "contraception is a bad thing."

      The world is already severly overpopulated, and when the surplus resources run low, will Jesus bip in and tell you that maybe procreation isn't a good idea any more? The salmon, shark and sardine industries have collapsed to tiny fractions of their former levels while the population increases – go forth and procreate? Jesus should have returned about 50 years ago and said "stop procreating – you are like a plague of locusts on their last field. But no.

      No protection agains STD's either – that's what early iron age Middle Eastern peasant superstitions gets you.

      Those pictures are of the forces of darkness and ignorance, aggressively fighting enlightenment and reason and progress because of ancient peasant superstitions.

      June 25, 2012 at 5:20 pm |
    • derp

      I'd ask you to try to make an intelligent connection between the cosmetic industry and denying people proper medical care based on your own (not theirs) religious beliefs.......... except that there isn't one, so never mind.

      June 25, 2012 at 5:26 pm |
    • Fufu

      Do not waste your time with Derp. He likes dirty Asians and is going to burn for eternity.

      June 25, 2012 at 5:27 pm |
    • derp

      "He likes dirty Asians and is going to burn for eternity"

      Actually, I like tall green eyed redheads.

      But you got the burn for eternity part right.

      June 25, 2012 at 5:36 pm |
    • sam

      You really did have to stretch for that one. Lots of contortionists on this site today.

      June 25, 2012 at 6:19 pm |
  8. Bill

    It's so simple, give back the money and you can do what you want for then it will be a religious activity like churches and schools. Take the governments money and abide by the laws of the nation. Didn't Jesus preach to render unto Caesars that which is Caesars?

    June 25, 2012 at 4:43 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      What money? Are you under the delusion that the U.S. government subsidizes the Church?

      June 25, 2012 at 5:01 pm |
    • derp

      "What money? Are you under the delusion that the U.S. government subsidizes the Church?"

      I didn't realize that they were now required to pay taxes.

      June 25, 2012 at 5:03 pm |
    • Surprise! Surprise! Surprise!

      Want to know the largest money source by far of the largest Catholic relief fund in America? U. S. Government subsidy. They DO get lots of money from the government, hundreds of millions, and keep a significant percentage as management fees.

      June 25, 2012 at 5:10 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Can you substantiate that?

      June 25, 2012 at 5:11 pm |
    • derp

      You could just go to the catholic charities website and look at the PDF where they disclose all of their funding sources.

      But that would have been easy and smart.

      June 25, 2012 at 5:33 pm |
    • Surprise! Surprise! Surprise!

      derp is right, Bill. Very easy. But I am happy to rub your nose in it. Here is the Catholic Relief Services' own financial summary. Go to the "financial summary section about 2/3rds of the way through, and voila!

      Sources of revenue: U.S. government grants $ 351,625,000, 42.73% of their income, largest single income source.

      THREE HUNDRED AND FIFTY MILLION dollars to a Catholic organization, which keeps over TWENTY MILLION DOLLARS for "operations".

      http://crs.org/about/finance/pdf/AR_2011.pdf

      June 25, 2012 at 6:21 pm |
    • Eileen

      Public private partnerships work. The government does not subsidize the Catholic Church; it subsidizes the government by producing quality work through partnerships and ADDING private funds AND volunteer hours to the mix. The reason for the partnerships is governments have learned we best help people by working together and faith-based groups often are able to provide high quality services more efficiently. You don't have to like the Catholic Church, but you would do better by at least getting informed before writing.

      June 25, 2012 at 7:55 pm |
    • Jimmy G.

      Eileen, your reply is a disgusting pack of lies. Have you ever gone by the name of gerald?

      June 26, 2012 at 6:12 am |
  9. Colin

    Did you know that the Pope has already complained about this article!! He considers the foto of the little boys as "lewd and provocative".

    June 25, 2012 at 4:33 pm |
  10. derp

    I totally understand why the catholics are mad. After all, the government has made catholicism illegal. So I can see why they are upset about their religious freedom being infringed upon.

    June 25, 2012 at 4:31 pm |
    • niknak

      What proof do you have of this derp?
      The first thing that should be pulled is all religions tax exempt status. And start with these morons.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
    • Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler

      It is clearly sarcasm.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:56 pm |
  11. Colin

    Next thing you know, the government will be doing something REALLY immoral, like funding condoms to prevent the spread of aids in subsaharan Africa.

    June 25, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
    • junior

      The ready availability of condoms in the US hasn't stopped the spread of diseases and stupidity for that matter.

      June 25, 2012 at 5:26 pm |
  12. colin

    Who am I?

    I don’t pay any taxes. I never have. Any money my organization earns is tax free and my own salary is also tax free, at the federal, state and local level. Despite contributing nothing to society, but still enjoying all its benefits (like roads, police, defense) that the rest of the country pay for, I feel I have the right to tell the government and others what to do. I am

    (a) A sleazy Wall Street banker

    (b) A mafia boss

    (c) A drug pusher; or

    (d) A Catholic Priest.

    June 25, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      this one is pretty hard, but i'm going to choose D: child molester

      June 25, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
    • Colin

      So Bootyfunk, a child molester, a tax cheat and a priest walk into a bar – and he orders a drink.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      lol.

      a rabbi, a lawyer and a priest are on a sinking ship.
      the rabbi says, "me must save the children!"
      the lawyer says, "fvck the children."
      the priest says, "do you think we have time?"

      June 25, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
    • Colin

      lol. No doubt you know the nun pregnant joke.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:32 pm |
    • Jimmy G.

      The answer is (e) All of the Above.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:59 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      hehe, sure do.

      how do you get a nun pregnant?

      dress her up like an altar boy...

      June 25, 2012 at 5:03 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Thank you for substantiating the charge of bigotry against Christians on the left.

      June 25, 2012 at 5:07 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      the ship one was the best.

      June 25, 2012 at 5:37 pm |
    • derp

      Thank you for substantiated that christians are a bunch of whining narcissistic bit ches.

      June 25, 2012 at 5:38 pm |
    • derp

      Priest happens across a boy who ism hanging from a cliff.

      Boy: "My family just went over the cliff, but I somehow managed to hang on to this ledge. Can you help me?"

      The priest drops his pants and says: "Your day just went from bad to worse"

      June 25, 2012 at 5:40 pm |
  13. smoke and mirrors

    A church in this much trouble is trying to distract people from the real issues. When priests molesting boys is considered just another news story because it happens so often, and when the Nuns are battling to bring the Catholic church into the 21st century, they have to lead with a distraction rather than tackling the real problems.

    June 25, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
    • Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler

      What do you expect when you have an organization full of people who admire Mother Theresa? Mother Theresa was a woman who worked actively to keep people in a state of suffering claiming it was the only way they could understand Jesus.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
    • Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler

      Sorry, realized that should be Teresa, not Theresa.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
    • junior

      I am convinced that some here get their news and possibly their degrees from the National Enquirer.

      June 25, 2012 at 5:17 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Can you publish the per capita ratio of pedophile priest and compare it to other organizations like the Boy Scouts, the Public School system or other church denominations? I'll wait.

      June 25, 2012 at 5:30 pm |
    • derp

      "Can you publish the per capita ratio of pedophile priest and compare it to other organizations like the Boy Scouts, the Public School system or other church denominations? I'll wait"

      Can you show me one other example of any organization that has systematically protected molesters, hidden them from law enforcement, obstructed prosecution, and placed molesters back in the company of children where they continued to molest them.

      I'll wait.

      June 25, 2012 at 5:43 pm |
    • Jimmy G.

      @derp
      They actually did that at Penn State to help Sandusky get away with it for so long.
      Schools are known for "passing the buck" when a molester is identified.
      The Boy Scouts have thousands of files on known molestations they had to be forced to release.
      Other churches have "youth pastors" and other priests and whatnot who are kept free from prosecution.
      This is not just a Catholic problem, but the RCC has certainly made it more "official" than most of the other organizations have done.
      Maybe because they've been doing it for centuries and the other ones for probably as long as they had children as easy targets that drew the molesters like flies. Children are the targets. Wherever they can be found is where they will be targeted.

      June 25, 2012 at 6:09 pm |
  14. Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler

    The sad thing is, if it were up to the Catholic hierarchy, nobody but Catholics would be allowed to have religious freedom. History shows what happens when the Catholics are in charge.

    June 25, 2012 at 4:15 pm |
    • junior

      Still here after 2000 years. Must be doing something right.

      June 25, 2012 at 5:15 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      @junior

      Yes fear and misinformation have proved to be useful tools that the church uses quite effectively.

      June 25, 2012 at 5:16 pm |
    • junior

      And since the invention of excuses, stupidity must have perished.

      June 25, 2012 at 5:22 pm |
    • EvolvedDNA

      Junior..Humanity was around a long time before the CC evolved from the pagan religions, and survived, and will be around long after its demise.

      June 25, 2012 at 8:20 pm |
  15. Bootyfunk

    We fight for the right not to use our frontal lobe!
    - Catholic solidarity theme

    June 25, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
  16. BRC

    I still can't get over the fact that the Catholic church is claiming that the church is complaining, because it's being told it's not allowed to interfere in the lives of citizens.

    We're being repressed, the government's not letting us try to stop people from doing stuff that we don't like, this isn't fair!

    I have a recommended chant if you have a protest going-"Hell no, we won't let them go!"

    June 25, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
    • BRC

      Sorry for the mix up, wrote church is complaining one too many times.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      xactly, cry more, catholics.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:14 pm |
  17. Surthurfurd

    Does this mean that the US government should never support churches in their charity work?

    June 25, 2012 at 4:12 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      In my opinion, no government should help or hinder charitable organizations, religions or otherwise, other than a very simple tax exemption for donors. That is, government should encourage donations but tax the recipient and their operation.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Nice opinion. Too bad it contradicts the first amendment

      June 25, 2012 at 5:33 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      How does it contradict the 1st amendment or any other law? The government would be perfectly neutral – give to any legitimate charity and get a tax deduction. All charities would taxed equally. Where is the consti.tutional guarantee/provision to excuse any charity or cult from paying taxes?

      June 25, 2012 at 6:56 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      @Bill Deacon

      Actually the tax exempt status is directly contradictory to the first amendment.

      June 25, 2012 at 6:58 pm |
    • Jimmy G.

      HotAirAce, I am surprised that you cannot understand a simple concept like a wall between church and state.

      For our government to "encourage" any religion or support of religion, is against our First Amendment.
      To "encourage" donations is illegal here. Maybe it's different in Canada, but here it is definitely illegal.

      And you also seem very confused about how taxes work and deductions.
      Allowing churches to have special consideration in our tax code is a violation of our First Amendment regardless of whether it is positive or negative in how it affect them.

      Churches are illegally subsidized by our government through the use of "deductions" for charitable giving. It is merely a smokescreen to hide the de-facto illegal monetary support of these organizations by the government through our deliberately obfuscatory tax code.
      If you were to pay ten dollars less in taxes because you gave ten dollars to a church, that is a government subsidy of that church and is extremely illegal, yet it is has been in our tax code for years. Who put it there? Religious people who wanted to violate the First Amendment put that into the tax code, and ignorant people who were too simple-minded to see through this transparent end-run around the First Amendment went blithely along with it and still have trouble seeing the scam even today.
      But it is clear enough to me and millions of other people.

      For your information, the government can not be considered "neutral" when it applies taxes unequally on the basis of who is giving charitably or not. It is a de-facto violation of neutrality to assist one party or the other, so I guess you should read up on neutrality rules and get back to us on that, k?

      June 26, 2012 at 5:46 am |
  18. dyslexic dog

    any erosion is because of all the child molestation in your ranks. better focus on fixing that first!

    June 25, 2012 at 4:11 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Can you post a comparative analysis of pedophile rates among Catholic clergy and other organizations?

      June 25, 2012 at 5:34 pm |
    • EvolvedDNA

      Bill ....you like to miss the point that its the cover ups and expectation from prosecution of a supposed moral organisation that is the issue. The CC is more concerned about it image than the folks they harmed..

      June 25, 2012 at 8:14 pm |
    • Snow

      Bill, lets say there is a comparitive study and that shows the catholic church clergy 10% less abusers than other organizations.. is it still ok? clergy is supposed to do god's work.. follow god's example of kindness.. is it OK for them to abuse? even if it is lower in percentage than other organizations?

      you whole argument is irrelevant.

      June 25, 2012 at 8:23 pm |
  19. BRC

    “The First Amendment enshrines in our nation's Consttution the principle that religious organizations must be able to practice their faith free from government interference,”

    It absolutely does NOT state that. The First Amendment safeguards the INDIVIDUAL's inalienable right to freelly practice their own religion, it has nothing to do with the church. The Consttution applies to people, not buildings. Just because you are used to creatively interpreting your own scripture, does not mean you get to make up whatever meanings you want for the founding principlesof our nation.

    June 25, 2012 at 4:09 pm |
    • Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler

      Except the supreme court recently decided that organizations and businesses are now considered people.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
    • BRC

      Too be fair that isn't unilaterally applied, it is a case by case basis. But you're right, it does open the window for absurd arguments like this.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
    • SPA Knight

      BRC – So your narrow definition of a chuch is a building? A church, community of believers, does not require a building.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:52 pm |
    • SPA Knight

      Jacques – Using BRC's logic, you cannot have an organization or corporation without a building.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:54 pm |
    • HumanistJohn

      Amen! (irony intended)

      June 25, 2012 at 5:17 pm |
    • BRC

      SPA Knight,
      Excellent job of creating an argument that wasn't there. No, a church is the entirety of the organization. I said building for brevity, I don't think many people failed to understand that, but in the future I will be more clear just in cae.

      June 26, 2012 at 8:55 am |
  20. Huebert

    I'm still confused as to how forcing insurance companies to provide contraception coverage infringes on catholic religious liberty.

    June 25, 2012 at 4:00 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      they are complaining that they don't have the right to take away the right to choose your own health care. boohoohoo!

      June 25, 2012 at 4:14 pm |
    • Huebert

      That sums up what I get out of the catholic argument, but I'm interested in a catholic point of view.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
    • Wrenn_NYC

      It all comes down to 'being a party to' the use of contraceptives. The original law's wording is that employers had to provide health care/insurance including contraception. That was changed and it is now that the insurance companies have to provide it, regardles of the stance of the employer.

      What the church is saying is – they find the use of contraception morally objectionable, and want to ban it for organizations they run.

      The problem is also that Roy Blount pushed an amendment whereby ANY employer could 'morally object' to a health care item and not cover it. The employer wouldn't need to be a 'church' or a 'religious organization. This is a whole can of worms that would rebound on many levels. Jehovah's Witness employers not covering blood transfusions. Scientologist employers not covering mental health, Christian Scientist not covering anything at all.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:46 pm |
    • SPA Knight

      The Church is self insured in many cases therefore they are the insurance company that is being forced to provide health care coverage that contradicts their beliefs. Many organizations, corporations and non-profits choose to self insure so this goes beyond the Catholic Church.

      June 25, 2012 at 4:57 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Bootyfunk is wrong. You absolutely have the right to choose your own health care. You just can't require someone else to offer the terms you want.

      June 25, 2012 at 5:37 pm |
    • Jimmy G.

      If people are getting paid as employees, you'd better believe they can make a law requiring proper health and safety regulations be applied equally to all employees!
      This is employment law, not First Amendment law. The rights of the employees cannot and should not be violated simply because the employer's religion condones bigotry and violating the rights of others!

      How about I start up a religion that says I don't have to follow any laws or respect anyone's rights? Because that is exactly what these priests are fighting for. They want to be able to violate people's rights with impunity regardless of what the law says.
      It's also their justification for hiding and helping child rapists in their ranks.
      They think they should be able to violate any law and then get away with it forever.
      That's the "freedom" they are fighting for.
      It's the "freedom" to violate the rights of other people. The "freedom" to commit any crime with a religious excuse.

      That is in direct violation of the First Amendment and they know it. But they are saying their rights are being violated when they aren't. They have the freedom to choose their own health care but not the health care of other people as that would be violating the rights of those other people.

      June 25, 2012 at 5:47 pm |
    • Eileen

      Many dioceses are self insured.

      But I'm curious for those who think this is a solution how many companies they know provide free, non-subsidized health care to their members. Nice idea, but the costs will be passed on. I find it fascinating people are so hung up on artificial contraception (not very environmentally friendly), when most people don't have dental care, eye care, etc. Those are services that literally help someone live. Someone who wants to avoid pregnancy (a) can get cheap contraceptives or (b) use a free environmentally friendly, non-artificial option. There are several that do work really well.

      June 25, 2012 at 7:59 pm |
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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.