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What's the "grave moral wrong" of birth control?

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Re: What's the "grave moral wrong" of birth control?

Postby Larry Kaufmann » Tue Mar 06, 2012 2:13 pm

I know I'm late to the party, but the issue about birth control and Obamacare in a nutshell is simply that the First Amendment goes both ways; it's not just about separating religious beliefs from coercive government laws, but also about keeping coercive government laws (which by definition apply to all citizens) out of private religious beliefs and institutions.

Some people on this thread obviously disdain and despise Catholicism - no worries, don't practice it. But the Catholic Church is the oldest, continuously-functioning institution in world history and believe it or not there are millions of Americans who respect it and choose to follow it's teachings on morality. I'm not one of them, but my mother is, and so are many other people I know. When the US Department of Health and Human Services tells every Catholic hospital, university and other Catholic-affiliated organization they have to provide contraception, in direct violation of Catholic moral teaching, it is a clear abuse of government's coercive power and the First Amendment. That ought to bother principled liberals.
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Re: What's the "grave moral wrong" of birth control?

Postby Endo Rockstar » Tue Mar 06, 2012 2:15 pm

Larry you smell of Ben-Gay and mothballs. The early bird special starts in 20 minutes...you better hurry.


-Dan Motor
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Re: What's the "grave moral wrong" of birth control?

Postby fisticuffs » Tue Mar 06, 2012 2:16 pm

Holy fuck, we've jumped the shark.


It is pretty amazing how that works. One hand feeds the other I suppose. I was surprised that the use of "Mrs." in reference to a married woman is somehow sexist.
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Re: What's the "grave moral wrong" of birth control?

Postby wack wack » Tue Mar 06, 2012 2:26 pm

Larry Kaufmann wrote:I know I'm late to the party, but the issue about birth control and Obamacare in a nutshell is simply that the First Amendment goes both ways; it's not just about separating religious beliefs from coercive government laws, but also about keeping coercive government laws (which by definition apply to all citizens) out of private religious beliefs and institutions.

Some people on this thread obviously disdain and despise Catholicism - no worries, don't practice it. But the Catholic Church is the oldest, continuously-functioning institution in world history and believe it or not there are millions of Americans who respect it and choose to follow it's teachings on morality. I'm not one of them, but my mother is, and so are many other people I know. When the US Department of Health and Human Services tells every Catholic hospital, university and other Catholic-affiliated organization they have to provide contraception, in direct violation of Catholic moral teaching, it is a clear abuse of government's coercive power and the First Amendment. That ought to bother principled liberals.


There's no way you posted this with a straight face. No way.
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Re: What's the "grave moral wrong" of birth control?

Postby Prof. Wagstaff » Tue Mar 06, 2012 2:27 pm

Hey, Meade --

Since you want to get all definitiony about "contraceptive", what about women who use "birth control" for something other than birth control? You are aware that besides preventing pregnancy, birth control can be used to treat many other women's health conditions, right?
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Re: What's the "grave moral wrong" of birth control?

Postby rabble » Tue Mar 06, 2012 2:28 pm

Larry Kaufmann wrote:When the US Department of Health and Human Services tells every Catholic hospital, university and other Catholic-affiliated organization they have to provide contraception, in direct violation of Catholic moral teaching, it is a clear abuse of government's coercive power and the First Amendment. That ought to bother principled liberals.

The church has to abide by Caesar's laws. The Church can tell its members not to use birth control. It cannot, ever, tell it's EMPLOYEES they can't have it, any more than they can force their employees to follow any other church laws.
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Re: What's the "grave moral wrong" of birth control?

Postby Larry Kaufmann » Tue Mar 06, 2012 2:35 pm

The issue is whether any institution affiliated with the Catholic church can be forced by the government to provide services that conflict with Catholic teaching, and the answer is no. Since we're talking about government policy, the relevant authority is the Constitution, not the Gospel.
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Re: What's the "grave moral wrong" of birth control?

Postby dave esmond » Tue Mar 06, 2012 2:38 pm

Larry Kaufmann wrote:When the US Department of Health and Human Services tells every Catholic hospital, university and other Catholic-affiliated organization they have to provide contraception, in direct violation of Catholic moral teaching, it is a clear abuse of government's coercive power and the First Amendment. That ought to bother principled liberals.

If they were telling the Catholic church they had to provide something they're morally opposed I'd have a problem.

But they're not.

AFFILIATED hospitals, schools and other PUBLIC organizations aren't churches. If you're a public organization and not a church, no matter whom you're affiliated with, you play by the public rules.

Hospitals, schools and other Catholic affiliated organizations aren't churches. It's that simple.

So no, I don't have any first amendment problem telling an organization that's not a church what to do if they want to serve the public. Don't like it? Pull up your big girl panties and close down your public organizations if you don't want to follow the same rules as the rest of the public organizations out there.
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Re: What's the "grave moral wrong" of birth control?

Postby Larry Kaufmann » Tue Mar 06, 2012 2:42 pm

Wrong Dave - they are private institutions, financed and operated by another private institution, the Catholic Church.

BTW, I'm sure this will all eventually end up in the Courts, where - like Obamacare itself - this policy will get tossed.
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Re: What's the "grave moral wrong" of birth control?

Postby Endo Rockstar » Tue Mar 06, 2012 2:44 pm

Larry Kaufmann wrote:Wrong Dave - they are private institutions, financed and operated by another private institution, the Catholic Church.

BTW, I'm sure this will all eventually end up in the Courts, where - like Obamacare itself - this policy will get tossed.


Well thank god almighty, Larry. Mind telling me what next week's powerball numbers are while you're staring into your crystal ball.

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Re: What's the "grave moral wrong" of birth control?

Postby dave esmond » Tue Mar 06, 2012 2:57 pm

Larry Kaufmann wrote:Wrong Dave - they are private institutions, financed and operated by another private institution, the Catholic Church.


Fine. They're private institutions who serve the public.

That's still not a church.

And they most certainly get money from plenty of other sources if they serve medicare patients, take federal student loan money, take payments from private insurance companies, etc, etc.

They're not churches no matter who their best buddies are.
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Re: What's the "grave moral wrong" of birth control?

Postby Larry Kaufmann » Tue Mar 06, 2012 2:59 pm

I don't have to stare too far Endo - the constitutional challenge to Obamacare is already in front of the US Supreme Court, and several State AGs have a court challenge in the works to the HHS policy.

The ultimate irony of this absurd spectacle is that illustrates how expansions of government power infringe on the liberty of private citizens and institutions, and probably just secured the fifth Supreme Court vote against Obamacare. Thank you K. Sebelius.
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Re: What's the "grave moral wrong" of birth control?

Postby jjoyce » Tue Mar 06, 2012 3:00 pm

You mean the taxpayer-subsidized Catholic Church.

Just sayin'.
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Re: What's the "grave moral wrong" of birth control?

Postby Henry Vilas » Tue Mar 06, 2012 3:10 pm

Larry K, Catholic hospitals do not have to pay for insurance that covers birth control, so their hands are clean. But the insurance company itself has to provide it.

And many Catholic hospitals already provide birth control coverage through their employer sponsored heath insurance (such as St. Mary's Hospital in Madison). So maybe their hands aren't so clean afterall.
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Re: What's the "grave moral wrong" of birth control?

Postby Larry Kaufmann » Tue Mar 06, 2012 3:14 pm

BTW, there's more than enough absurdity to go around on this issue - Obama for putting the whole thing in motion, and adopting the individual mandate (which he excoriated Hillary Clinton for supporting) as the centerpiece of his health care "reform" plan; the Democratic Congress, for passing such a grotesque, poorly-conceived piece of legislation; Sebelius and Obama again, for cynically ginning up the phony "contraception" issue; Santorum, for foolishly jumping on the bandwagon and thoroughly confusing the issue (and yes, I have no doubt in his heart of hearts Rick Santorum does want to impose his morality via legislation); Fluke, for her childish and misleading Congressional testimony; and Limbaugh, for his similarly childish smear. The whole thing has been a circus...
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