The Killing Exception
Does anyone think that people whose faith tells them that all types of killing are wrong should be forced to bear arms in the U.S. military?
Why, then, do liberals who most strongly favor conscientious objector status, both back in the days when the draft was in force and more recently in the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts, have no problem with forcing Catholics to pay for abortion-inducing drugs? Can anyone with a straight face really say that being put in a situation where you might have to defend yourself by killing someone who is trying to kill you is morally worse than making you pay to kill an innocent unborn child? In reality, both violate our First Amendment rights.
America's support for conscientious objectors is a clear sign of how important Americans hold faith. Even though the vast majority of religious Americans agree with the need to defend their country by force, they respect their fellow citizens who feel called by God to eschew any form of violence. While conscientious objectors often avoid the dangers of combat -- though many honest objectors volunteer for medical duty, which puts them right in the thick of battle -- that has not stopped America from protecting the objectors' right to practice their religion. In fact, the men who had to go into combat because the conscientious objectors wouldn't are risking their lives to protect the religious liberty that is so central to what makes America great.
So why can't religious people who truly believe that abortion is the murder of an innocent unborn human being become the new conscientious objectors? We are constantly told that we must be tolerant and respectful of the unique cultural characteristics of Americans of various ethnic and cultural backgrounds. We're told that diversity is an American strength and that by extolling our positive differences, we can become a better country. Yet the same people who tell us we must respect diversity and practice tolerance show no willingness to tolerate the faith of millions of Christian Americans who do not want to fund abortifacient medications as part of ObamaCare.
If America was, and is, willing to let people avoid the risks of combat because of their moral beliefs, why are liberals unwilling to let people buy insurance that does not cover the execution of the unborn? Historically, Americans were willing to risk the loss of their country rather than force conscientious objectors to fight; they realized that if America forced people to go against their consciences, America would already be lost.
But today we face a new breed of liberals who do not consider freedom a right. Rather, they believe that we can be free to do only that which the government approves of. Their view of government is one shared by despots and tyrants throughout history: the masses are to be led by their betters. In their world, conscientious objectors are acceptable so long as the liberal elites agree with what they object to. Objecting to the war in Iraq was fine, for example, but objecting to President Clinton's use of the military in Bosnia was not. Similarly, because liberals think that it's necessary to be able to kill your "unwanted" children, liberals refuse to allow those whose faith teaches the scientifically proven humanity of the unborn to be conscientious objectors to abortion. Evil can never stand the existence of good. Liberals must force everyone to support liberal vices to avoid the real nature of their actions being revealed in contrast with that which is good.
Pro-lifers have been told for years, "If you don't like abortion, don't have one." The irrationality of the argument can be seen by this slight substitution: "If you don't like people being slaves, don't buy one." But now those who favor abortion are saying something radically different.
ObamaCare has removed the option of choosing not to be involved in abortions by requiring that everyone pay for insurance that covers medicines that induce abortions. Pro-lifers are now being told, "If you don't like abortion, tough -- you need to pay for it when others want it."
America will not fall if women, and their partners, have to pay for their own abortions. Since 1972 women have managed this without causing the collapse of America. Why, then, should the "right" to free abortions, found nowhere in American law, trump the First Amendment?
Some will object that abortion-inducing prescriptions are only a small part of what ObamaCare does, so it's okay to force Americans to violate their consciences just a little bit. But the same argument could be used against conscientious objectors. Very few soldiers who carry guns actually kill anyone, yet we don't say to those who object to killing America's enemies that they need to carry a gun since odds are they won't actually have to shoot anyone.
It is also important to note that many contraceptive techniques can induce abortion. Originally the Pill had a high dose of estrogen -- roughly 150 micrograms. That pill prevented conception, but the high doses of estrogen caused a wide spectrum of side-effects, including fatal ones -- estrogen supplements for treating menopause have fallen into disfavor because of such side-effects. In response, the dosage of estrogen was reduced to 20-50 micrograms. The problem is that at those low dosages, the Pill often fails. Drug companies added other chemicals to the Pill that induce an early abortion by altering the woman's body so that a fertilized embryo won't survive in order to ensure a sufficiently high "success" rate.
Some might say that objecting to such early abortions is silly or stupid. Yet most Americans would say the same about the beliefs of conscientious objectors while still defending their right to exercise those beliefs. Being American means foregoing the impulse to tell others what they should believe and respecting what they do believe. You don't have to think Islam is reasonable to want to protect Muslims' right to roll out their prayer mat at work and pray.
The same mechanism used by Obama to push the current HHS mandate will allow him, if re-elected, to add surgical abortion to that mandate. According to Secretary Kathleen Sebelius's reading of ObamaCare, she has the right to define what "women's preventative health care" consists of. Given her (and Obama's) interpretation of the law, there is nothing to prevent Sebelius, an ardent supporter of all forms of abortion, from adding surgical abortions to the list in Obama's second term. She has already included at least one class of surgical procedure -- sterilization -- so adding abortion would not be a significant change in the type of items covered by "women's preventative health care."
Do Americans really want our country to become a place where government bureaucrats like Sebelius can force Americans to violate their religious and moral principles? Why not allow conscientious objection to abortion?
You can read more of Tom's rants at http://obvioustalk.blogspot.com.