Because the administration is knowingly forcing (primarily Catholic) religious organizations to pay for medical services to which they are theologically opposed, the new rules represent a frontal assault on freedom of religion at an institutional level. This is no small matter. To date, public controversies over “conscience” in health care have mostly involved individuals — e.g., doctors, nurses, pharmacists — whose personal morality or religious convictions conflicted with the provision of certain medical procedures or substances. …
But the free-birth-control rule goes much further than creating a potential conflict between the general law and individual religious beliefs. Rather, the rule targets the right of religious organizations to conduct their public activities consistently with their religious dogma and moral values — except within the narrow confines of an actual church, synagogue, mosque, temple, or monastery.
Tags: Birth Control, freedom of religion, kathleen sebelius