Does Obamacare require you to pay for abortions? Reply


Yes.

Despite the furious debate between President Obama and a few conscientious Democrats, like Bart Stupak, you and I are required by force of law to pay taxes that will abort babies.

Despite an Executive Order to the contrary, the long anticipated dream of the Democratic Party has been realized.  Tax-payer funded abortions are here.

I will point out how the Executive Order is circumvented in a moment.  First, let us review the three philosophies affected by the new abortion entitlement.

Group One

The first was clearly articulated in a letter to the editor in yesterday’s Des Moines Register (in response to my column the week before).  I quote:  “A fetus is a growth like a tumor – not a person, and has no human rights whatsoever.”

In other words, a fetus is an inhuman blob, a tumor, perhaps much like a gall bladder gone bad.  It is not a person.  To Americans with this philosophy, there is nothing objectionable to tax-payer funded abortions.  To this group, there is much to be said of ridding the world of unwanted babies, much as there is much to be said of ridding the world of gall bladders gone bad.

This group sees no moral issue with abortion.

Group Two

Group Two consists of President Obama and most of the Democratic Party.  They believe abortion should be rare, but safe.  This group gives tacit acknowledgement to the humanity of the fetus.  Why else should abortions be rare?  You wouldn’t say that if you viewed the fetus as being equivalent to a tumor, as Group One does.  However, despite its humanity, group two is unwilling to grant the fetus human rights and allows its destruction for any reason.

Group Two typically mouths the platitude:  “while I’m personally against abortion, I can’t impose my view on others.”

Group Three

Group Three views the fetus as a baby, as a human being, as a person with full human rights.

Notwithstanding the platitudes mentioned above, Group Two in fact joined with Group One in pushing for taxpayer funded abortions in the healthcare debate.

Even more, they agitate to remove conscience safeguards for pro life healthcare providers.  In fact, they very much wish to foist their view on others.

Group Three, of which I am a member, recoils in horror and shame at the thought that our tax dollars are used to destroy innocent human life in the womb.

At this point, you may want to know why Group Three is so worked up.  After all, the President issued an Executive Order to keep abortion out of the health care bill.  Right?

Unfortunately, there are loopholes.  The United States Catholic Bishops issued a summary of these loopholes:

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• Federal funds in the Act can be used for elective abortions. For example, the Act authorizes and appropriates $7 billion over five years (increased to $9.5 billion by the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010) for services at Community Health Centers.  These funds are not covered by the Hyde amendment (as they are not appropriated through the Labor/HHS appropriations bill governed by that amendment), or by the Act’s own abortion limitation in Sec. 1303 (as that provision relates only to tax credits or cost-sharing reductions for qualified health plans, and does not govern all funds in the bill).  So the funds can be used directly for elective abortions.

• The Act uses federal funds to subsidize health plans that cover abortions. Sec. 1303 limits only the direct use of a federal tax credit specifically to fund abortion coverage; it tries to segregate funds within health plans, to keep federal funds distinct from funds directly used for abortions.  But the credits are still used to pay overall premiums for health plans covering elective abortions.  This violates the policy of current federal laws on abortion funding, including the Hyde amendment, which forbid use of federal funds for any part of a health benefits package that covers elective abortions.  By subsidizing plans that cover abortion, the federal government will expand abortion coverage and make abortions more accessible.

· The Act uses federal power to force Americans to pay for other people’s abortions even if they are morally opposed.

The Act mandates that insurance companies deciding to cover elective abortions in a health plan “shall… collect from each enrollee in the plan (without regard to the enrollee’s age, sex, or family status) a separate payment” for such abortions.  While the Act says that one plan in each exchange will not cover elective abortions, every other plan may cover them  — and everyone purchasing those plans, because they best meet his or her family’s needs, will be required by federal law to fund abortions.  No accommodation is permitted for people morally opposed to abortion.  This creates a more overt threat to conscience than insurers engage in now, because in many plans receiving federal subsidies everyone will have to make separate payments solely and specifically for other people’s abortions.  Saying that this payment is not a “tax dollar” is no help if it is required by government.

***

What gives the Catholic Bishop’s such credibility is that if the Stupak language was kept in the bill, the Bishops found much to commend in the rest of the bill.  (I humbly demur, but that is a post for another day.)

Does Obamacare require you to pay for abortions?  Yes.

What is the truth? Reply


As seen in the Des Moines Register April 18, 2010

Is truth absolute or relative?

Americans disagree.  The question needs a healthy airing in light of an upcoming nomination battle this summer to select a new member of the Supreme Court.  After all, our Justices have to determine what is the truth from a legal point of view.  Their decisions have had a profound affect on the fabric of our nation.

The most obvious example: before 1973, forty-six states said it was illegal to kill a baby in the womb.  After 1973, those laws were considered to be wrong.  The underlying principal, that the baby in the womb was a person with rights, was “untrue” according to the Justices.

Moral Relativism has emerged as a powerful force in America.  It animates the political Left, and it is the political Left that currently dominates Washington.  They will select the next Justice.

Moral Relativists view truth as an oozing, fluid idea.  What was true yesterday may not be true tomorrow.  Feelings determine morality.  Truth is an evolving entity, much like the Constitution of the United States in their eyes.

The self-esteem movement is a reflection of the impact moral relativism has had on our culture.  Moral absolutism produces guilt when we do something wrong.  Guilt is bad.  On the other hand, moral relativism allows us to rationalize away such unpleasantness, which makes us happy.  Happiness is good.

Therefore, feelings ultimately define morality for the Relativist.  Self-esteem is the name of the game.

For moral absolutists, it is just the opposite.  Moral actions define feelings.  Self-respect is the name of the game.  They believe truth is timeless and universal.

Moral Relativists point out that truth can’t be absolute, because different cultures have embraced such different values.  Who is to say our values, whatever they may be, are superior to theirs’?  Values and truth are relative.  Right?  The mantra for the Relativist goes something like this:  “Although I’m personally opposed to [fill in the blank], I certainly can’t tell another culture or person that it is wrong if that is their own truth.”

But if that were really true, we’d be forced to accept Nazi genocide of the Jews as an acceptable German value, and who are we to impose our values on others? In fact, we so adamantly rejected them that we went to war over them.

This points out an unspoken flaw with Relativism.  Cultures are actually more alike than dissimilar.  We are bound together by transcendent truth.

Courage and compassion are revered in every culture in the world today and yesterday.  Even in Nazi Germany, they were on display by brave Germans hiding their Jewish friends from the Nazis. Wisdom, hope, and honesty are universally venerated.  They are ingrained in humanity, imprinted on our soul, so to speak.

There has never been a culture that celebrates lying, betrayal, addiction, cowardice, and selfishness.  How can this be if values are relative?

The great moral influencers of the world include Moses, Jesus, Buddha, Confucius, and Mohammed.  Their moral philosophies were more alike than dissimilar.

So when the Congressional Judicial Committee sits down with the next Supreme Court nominee to determine their worthiness for the bench, it would be instructive to ask him or her these questions:

Do we have a fundamental right to life?

Do we have a fundamental right to liberty?

Do we have a fundamental right to a pursuit of happiness?  What does happiness mean from a legal viewpoint?

If yes, from whom (or Whom) do these rights flow?

Is truth absolute or relative?