Mike Huckabee News
Jan 06 2014
Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor temporarily stayed the Obamacare mandate on the Little Sisters of the Poor, forcing them to let third parties provide contraceptives to their employees. It might be just to buy time, but it suggests that even liberal Justices recognize that the government’s actions don’t simply show a disregard for people’s religious faith. This is a total disconnect from reality. The First Amendment makes it pretty clear that Congress can’t pass laws forcing nuns to violate their most sacred beliefs, but it’s not clear to this government. The Founders would be stunned if they ever saw the US Justice Department doing everything possible to force the Little Sisters of the Poor to okay providing contraceptives and abortion drugs. This isn’t a court case. It’s government gone wild.
Of course, the New York Times editorial board disagrees. I'm sure they know far more about Catholic theology than an order of nuns does. But the Times says the Little Sisters already got their exemption from directly paying for contraceptives, so they should stop their complaining. Why, all they have to do is sign a waiver allowing a third party to provide contraceptives and abortion drugs and sterilizations. That's like saying, "I recognize that you morally object to committing murder yourself, but all I'm asking you to do is sign a contract to hire a hit man." Critics also claim the waiver is just a meaningless piece of paper. But as the Sisters’ attorney pointed out, if it's so meaningless, why is the government threatening nuns with huge fines they can't possibly pay to force them to sign it?
There's a larger principle at stake than whether some people get free birth control pills. This is a question of religious liberty. At what point does the government have a right to tell us, "You can believe -- but only so far, and only so much. You can practice your faith - but only until it comes in conflict with the government." Some of our leaders need to retake 9th grade civics. The First Amendment says Congress shall make no law prohibiting the free exercise of religion, not that religions must renounce any beliefs that Congress disapproves of. It prevents government from infringing on our freedom. It doesn't bar us from infringing on the government's authoritarianism.
I'd like to think that the Supreme Court wouldn't rule against the Little Sisters of the Poor, and that even the liberal justices couldn't somehow believe that the government has the power to impose heavy fines against a religious charity with no money, to force them to violate their sacred beliefs. I'd like to think that, but I've been disappointed in this Court repeatedly. On the other hand, maybe they're overdue to get one right.