Monday, January 30, 2012

Response to the Disappointing New York Times Position on Birth Control Mandate

Update - Mirrors of Justice Link fixed

A rather disappointing New York Times Op Ed from their editorial board. See Birth Control and Reproductive Rights. It' not that their position is unexpected , but well they don't deal with the major objections.

I read this article today Birmingham Catholic Diocese's new warehouse just in time that deals with a major purchase and investment to help the Tornado victims to recover and it got me thinking about the future.

From the New York Times Op Ed:

.....The requirement, announced last August, contains an exemption for employees of churches and other houses of worship. But it properly covers employees of hospitals, universities, charitable groups and other entities that are associated with religious organizations but serve the general public and employ people of different faiths. The final version of the rule gives certain nonprofit employers an extra year to comply. The administration’s commitment to affordable birth control is welcome at a moment when women’s access to reproductive health care, including contraceptives, cancer screenings and abortion services, is under assault in the courts, state legislatures and Congress, as well as on the Republican campaign trail.....

Reading that it seems that the Catholic operation and employees in Alabama might be covered. Hire a Methodist and help Pentecostal Tornado victims ,and it appears one has go against core teachings.

Mirrors of Justice has a good post today at "Government and its Rivals". In it they quote Ross Douthat also of the Times but who has a different view. He says in part:

WHEN liberals are in a philosophical mood, they like to cast debates over the role of government not as a clash between the individual and the state, but as a conflict between the individual and the community. Liberals are for cooperation and joint effort; conservatives are for self-interest and selfishness. Liberals build the Hoover Dam and the interstate highways; conservatives sit home and dog-ear copies of “The Fountainhead.” Liberals know that it takes a village; conservatives pretend that all it takes is John Wayne . . .

. . . But there are trade-offs as well, which liberal communitarians don’t always like to acknowledge. When government expands, it’s often at the expense of alternative expressions of community, alternative groups that seek to serve the common good. Unlike most communal organizations, the government has coercive power — the power to regulate, to mandate and to tax. These advantages make it all too easy for the state to gradually crowd out its rivals. The more things we “do together” as a government, in many cases, the fewer things we’re allowed to do together in other spheres. . . .
. . .
The more the federal government becomes an instrument of culture war, the greater the incentive for both conservatives and liberals to expand its powers and turn them to ideological ends. It is Catholics hospitals today; it will be someone else tomorrow.

The White House attack on conscience is a vindication of health care reform’s critics, who saw exactly this kind of overreach coming. But it’s also an intimation of a darker American future, in which our voluntary communities wither away and government becomes the only word we have for the things we do together

1 comment:

Kurt said...

Ross Douthat is a thoughtful writer. He rightly points out on this issue and others liberals have not always lived up to the appreciation for intermediary institutions in promoting commmunity.

I think it should also be noted that he does no tdeny that conservatives on the other hand have a record of hostility towards intermediary organizations calming the exceses of radical individualism. Let's start with labor union, for example.