Catholic Bishops in the United States have shown that their objections to Administration policy is purely political . The policy would have catholic businesses like Hospitals and Universities the church operate pay for contraceptive coverage in their health plans. Catholic bishops argue the new policy would force them do provide funding for something they are morally opposed to. The president has since stepped into the fray offering a compromise which would have the Insurance companies picking up the tab for the contraception to women employed by these catholic institutions.
As I indicated yesterday Timothy Dolan the designated leader of the catholic bishops, issued a rather pompous statement in response to the olive branch extended by president Obama. Dolan issued a rather disrespectful and scathing broadside in which he castigated the administration, accusing it of interfering with the operations of the church.
It did not matter to Dolan that the issue has nothing to do with Government interference in the church , but actually is about women’s reproductive rights and health. Dolan seemed not to want the truth to get in the way of the republican narrative he wanted to prolong.
The bishops said the plan offered insufficient protection for their institutions: “In the case where the employee and insurer agree to add the objectionable coverage, that coverage is still provided as a part of the objecting employer’s plan, financed in the same way as the rest of the coverage offered by the objecting employer. This, too, raises serious moral concerns.” The Obama administration plans to hold a series of meetings in the coming days and will invite the bishops and other religious leaders to collaborate on developing the new policy, said an administration official who was not authorized to speak on the record.
James Salt, executive director of Catholics United, a liberal advocacy group that is organizing support for the Obama administration, said, “The bishops’ blanket opposition appears to serve the interests of a political agenda, not the needs of the American people.” neworktimes.com
For the Catholic Church, which considers the use of artificial birth control a sin, the mandate is “a radically new and unprecedented attack on religious freedom,” said Washington Cardinal Donald Wuerl, Baltimore Archbishop Edwin O’Brien and Wilmington Bishop W. Francis Malooly.(usatoday.com)
The language of the bishops in the last paragraph is replete with the talking points of republicans in congress, those on the campaign trail and the talking heads on FOX mis-information.
This is not about any governmental intrusion into the affairs of the church, it is not about the executive branch over-reaching into religion, it is open assault on the duly elected president of the United States of America by republican operatives within the catholic church on behalf of their friends on the far right of the republican party.
Let us be clear even some of those who first objected like former Governor Tim Kaine has said that the compromise offered by the president satisfied all concerns he had . Clearly the catholic church has aligned itself with republican right wingers in this country against working women. Women who make up large parts of the congregation that makes the catholic church the powerful and filthy rich tax exempt institution it is .