Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Dr. Frederick Liewehr

12/31/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

The entire issue is an unnecessary attack on all people of faith

In a time of economic distress, with the lowest labor participation rate in 35 years, the Obama government has decided to force Hobby Lobby to provide contraceptive coverage for its employees that include drugs that are abortion-inducing, including the morning-after pill and week-after pill, or close its doors. Hobby Lobby has filed a suit against the HHS mandate, which claims that "The Green family's religious beliefs forbid them from participating in, providing access to, paying for, training others to engage in, or otherwise supporting abortion-causing drugs and devices."

Highlights

By Dr. Frederick Liewehr

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

12/31/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in U.S.

Keywords: Hobby Lobby, Obamacare, Affordable Care Act, contraceptive mandate, Supreme Court, David Green, Green family, Pro-Life, Dr. Frederick Liewehr


RICHMOND,VA (Catholic Online) - Hobby Lobby is one of the nation's largest arts and crafts retailers, with more than 500 locations in 41 states. David Green and his family started the company over 40 years ago, and have run it on Christian principles ever since. What are those principles and what makes Hobby Lobby one of the "good guys" in today's corporate world? In an op ed piece in the September 12, 2012 edition of USA Today, Green explained:

I've always said that the first two goals of our business are 1) to run our business in harmony with God's laws, and 2) to focus on people more than money. And that's what we've tried to do. We close early so our employees can see their families at night. We keep our stores closed on Sundays, one of the week's biggest shopping days, so that our workers and their families can enjoy a day of rest. We believe that it is by God's grace that Hobby Lobby has endured, and he has blessed us and our employees. We've not only added jobs in a weak economy, we've also raised wages for the past four years in a row. Our full-time employees start at 80% above minimum wage.

In a time of economic distress, with the lowest labor participation rate in 35 years, the Obama government has decided to force Hobby Lobby to provide contraceptive coverage for its employees that include drugs that are abortion-inducing, including the morning-after pill and week-after pill, or close its doors. Hobby Lobby has filed a suit against the HHS mandate, which claims that "The Green family's religious beliefs forbid them from participating in, providing access to, paying for, training others to engage in, or otherwise supporting abortion-causing drugs and devices."

The lawsuit says the family also has "a sincere religious objection" to providing coverage for certain kinds of intrauterine devices (IUD's) and alleges they can cause the death of an embryo by preventing it from implanting in the wall of a woman's uterus. It also objects to the so-called "morning-after pill" which supposedly acts as an after the fact preventative measure (huh?) supposedly by preventing ovulation or fertilization, but often by preventing implantation, where the already fertilized egg tries to attach itself to the uterus. Thus, the "morning after pill" is in effect a chemical abortifacient. 

Let us briefly consider what is currently available in chemical "birth control". The first is the French "abortion pill" RU-486, which is a steroid hormone similar to progesterone called mifepristone. The purpose of this drug is to abort a pregnancy. American pro-life groups lobbied so effectively against its importation that the French company handed over the manufacturing rights to an American company formed to produce it called Danco Laboratories, who markets it as Mifeprex. It is used to produce abortion within 7 weeks after sex, although it has been used up to 9 weeks.

The other chemical "birth control" is the so-called "morning after pill" which is not a single drug but rather a cocktail of oral contraceptives with a higher dose of hormones. The dosage and frequency of administration vary, but all are to be taken some time after a woman has sex. The drugs are called Plan B and Levonelle, otherwise known as "the morning-after pill" and "the week-after pill." In some cases these pills may prevent ovulation, but in other cases they, like a mechanical IUD, inhibit implantation of the embryo. In cases in which the embryo cannot implant, it dies, and the drug acts as a chemical abortifacient. Many pharmaceutical companies prefer to euphemistically call this method of birth control as "emergency contraception" instead of the Morning-After Pill.

Hobby Lobby is right. The government demands that it provide abortion services to its employees that it correctly believes are immoral and against the law of God. If it does not comply, it will face fines of $1.3 million PER DAY, and will be forced to close the doors of its 400 stores, putting thousands of people out of work. I guess this is how Obama creates jobs.

The health care reform law includes a "religious conscience" clause that allows certain "recognized religious sects" an exemption to the individual mandate. This has been so narrowly interpreted that although a Catholic (or other religious denominated) parish may receive an exemption, a Catholic hospital, for example, may not. There is thus no consideration for anyone who wishes to actually practice during the week the beliefs he professes on Sunday. This seems to be the trend for the Obama crowd - give lip service to Constitutional rights but make sure they are not actually practiced. You may have religious beliefs, but make sure they don't leave your church building.

The amazing thing is that this issue need never have arisen. Obamacare was billed as "affordable health insurance" for everyone. What is overlooked is what health insurance really is.

Insurance is best exemplified by homeowners who are afraid that their houses might burn down and leave them homeless. The chance of that happening is not very good, but if it did, it would be devastating. So, since saving money for the loss would be financially impossible for most people, they pool their money instead, and if a fire should occur, that pool of money is used to rebuild the lost home. The amount they must pay for this insurance is calculated by actuarial tables that consider the likelihood of the occurrence, plus the operating expenses and profit of the insurance company that underwrites it.

Health insurance is similar. Paying for a catastrophic illness or accident is beyond the financial capability of most people, so using similar actuarial tables that consider the likelihood of the occurrence, a premium is set that reflects the cost of insurance. That premium varies according to the services covered and the likelihood of the person needing these services.

What has happened is that the health insurance industry has grown tremendously in America primarily because it was treated favorably in the tax law, both for employers and for employees. It was cheaper for employers and for employees to receive this as a benefit than to get an actual raise because it was treated favorably by the IRS. As a result of these third-party payers, the cost of medical care has also skyrocketed, as have consumer demands on the quantity and quality of health care they receive, since the insured have little or no incentive to restrict their use of the system when someone else is paying for it.

"Insurance" that covers something like birth control or dental hygiene appointments is absurd. From an actuarial standpoint, everyone needs to have their teeth cleaned twice a year. That is 100% utilization. To pay an insurance company to cover that means that the insurance company must pay out the cost plus its administrative cost and profit. Thus, the overall cost will be higher than if the patient simply pays the dentist for the cleaning. The only reason we have this absurd situation is that a third party is paying, not the patient himself.

The HHS mandate is similar. There is no reason for Obama's "health insurance" to cover contraception. For those morally inclined to use it, it is a 100% incidence. It is not like hospitalization for a car accident or a heart attack that occurs only to a small number in the insured pool; it has a 100% incidence and is not really insurance at all. Of course, whether contraception is "health care" also begs the question. The White House said on Tuesday that it believes a requirement on contraceptives is "lawful and essential to women's health".

Huh? I don't see women who are not using contraceptives dropping dead all around me. In fact, research is now showing that contraceptive use may increase the risk of heart disease and stroke, increase the risk of cancer, and lead to increased risk of atherosclerotic plaque formation, which can produce clots that can cause serious injury and death if they travel to the heart, lungs or brain. This hardly sounds like something that is "essential to women's health" to me. But then, in pro-abort Newspeak, Planned Parenthood insists that abortions are part of "women's health", too.

Thus, the entire issue is an unnecessary attack on all people of faith. Birth control can be accomplished at no cost, and morally, through Natural Family Planning, and for those so inclined, mechanical means are available at very low cost at any drugstore. There is absolutely no need to include it in Obamacare. The issue is simply being pushed by the government as a control issue, another example of the trampling of our most precious liberties in yet another power play by the Administration.

The Hobby Lobby case is before the Supreme Court.  It is now up to this body, the same one that erroneously defined Obamacare as a "tax" and thus legitimate, instead of the unconstitutional forcing of the citizenry to purchase something they do not want to purchase that it actually is, to decide whether this mandate is Constitutional. The Supreme Court already opted not to take up a case challenging the Obamacare requirement brought by Liberty University, an evangelical protestant college in Virginia, instead opting to leave in place an appeals court's ruling striking down their lawsuit. This does not bode well for Hobby Lobby, and in this season of the Holy Family, they need our prayers.

---------- Dr. Frederick Liewehr is an endodontist who teaches and works in private practice. He converted from Protestantism to Catholicism in 1983, having been drawn ineluctably to Christ's Church by the light of Truth. He is a member of St. Benedict parish in Richmond, a Fourth Degree Knight of Columbus and a Cooperator of Opus Dei.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for May 2015
Universal:
That, rejecting the culture of indifference, we may care for our neighbours who suffer, especially the sick and the poor.
Evangelization: That Mary's intercession may help Christians in secularized cultures be ready to proclaim Jesus.


Rosaries, Crosses, Prayer Cards and more... by Catholic Shopping .com


Comments


More U.S.

Memorial Day: Honor Those Who Died in Service. Thank Those who Serve. Pray For the Nation Watch

Image of

By Deacon Keith Fournier

I am always drawn to these words of Jesus on Memorial Day weekend, - No one has greater love than this, to lay down one's life for one's friends. (John 15:13) Military service which leads to laying one's life down is certainly an expression of this kind of heroic ... continue reading


Memorial Day: Chaplains - A Reminder that We Are One Nation Under God Watch

Image of

By Fr. Randy Sly

The work of our chaplains extends much farther than the post chapel. They labor on land, at sea and in the air. There are 1.4 million Catholics in the military; wherever they are stationed, the chaplain is there. These chaplains can be found bringing Jesus Christ to ... continue reading


Memorial Day: Honor Those Who Honor Our Nation with Heroic Sacrifice Watch

Image of Thank you, to every man and woman who has fought and is currently fighting for our homeland.  Thank you for doing everything within your power to make sure I and my children can sleep safely tonight.  I love and appreciate you and I pray God's blessing on you and your families.  Godspeed, and come home soon.

By Jennifer Hartline

Thank you, to every man and woman who has fought and is currently fighting for our homeland.  Thank you for doing everything within your power to make sure I and my children can sleep safely tonight.  I love and appreciate you and I pray God's blessing on you ... continue reading


MASSIVE OIL SPILL: Santa Barbara declares state of emergency over massive oil spill in Pacific Ocean Watch

Image of

By Hannah Raissa Marfil (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

About 9 miles of the Pacific ocean, across a popular spot on the California coast, was damaged after a pipeline leaked massive amounts of oil in the water earlier this week.     MUNTINLUPA, PHILIPPINES (Catholic Online) - According to officials, up to ... continue reading


UC Santa Barbara massacre survivor speaks on the day's events and his journey to recovery Watch

Image of www.thisischriswhite.com

By Atarah Haely (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The fateful night of May 23, 2014, Antoine Cherchian managed to survive being shot by the virgin killer, Elliot Rodger, during his killing spree at UC Santa Barbara. While Cherchian sustained fatal injuries, along with six other students murdered, he is thankful for ... continue reading


Crackdown by federal agents on 'Pill Mills' in four southern states Watch

Image of An average of 44 people in the U.S. dies every day from opioids. These drugs include Vicodin, OxyContin and Percocet.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The Drug Enforcement Administration and other authorities are raiding pharmacies, pain clinics and other facilities in four southern U.S. states. It is all part of an aggressive crackdown on prescription pain drug abuse. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - ... continue reading


Matt C. Abbott: Why I wrote Pope Francis about an exorcist

Image of Father William S. Bowdern, S.J. Father Bowdern was the chief exorcist in the 1949 exorcism of Robbie, the teenaged boy whose case inspired William Peter Blatty's 1971 novel The Exorcist, which subsequently was made into a feature film.

By Matt C. Abbott

Here's one name I haven't heard mentioned in regard to possible canonization, yet it seems he'd be a good candidate: Father William S. Bowdern, S.J. Father Bowdern, who was born in 1897 and died in 1983, was the chief exorcist in the 1949 exorcism of "Robbie," ... continue reading


FBI lectures High school students on resisting ISIS recruitment Watch

Image of The FBI is planning to take its message to other schools in the Tri-State Area to reach kids at critical adolescent ages.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

High school students at Bergen County School, in Bergen County, New Jersey got a surprise lecture from FBI agents. They warned students away from sophisticated new techniques used by Islamic State to join their ranks. In particular, a new ISIS-produced video ... continue reading


Bin Laden's secret files: What we found and what's been released Watch

Image of The U.S. Department of National Intelligence has released a report of documents that were captured during the May 1, 2011 raid in Pakistan that resulted in the death of Osama bin Laden.

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The U.S. government has begun declassifying and releasing documents that were captured during the 2011 raid of Osama bin Laden's hideout in Pakistan, and some of what has been released shows that America's number one enemy for almost a decade was obsessed with ... continue reading


Are there weapons aboard? U.S. Air Force space shuttle's secret contents no longer a secret Watch

Image of

By Talia Ramos (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The U.S. Air Force's X-37B space shuttle, launched into Earth's orbit, was revealed not to contain weapons as many feared. MUNTINLUPA, PHILIPPINES (Catholic Online) - According to the published manifest, the space shuttle carries a new form of Hall ion-powered ... continue reading


All U.S. News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Sirach 17:19-27
19 Their actions are all as plain as the sun to him, ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 32:1-2, 5, 6, 7
1 [Of David Poem] How blessed are those whose offence ... Read More

Gospel, Mark 10:17-27
17 He was setting out on a journey when a man ran up, ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for May 25th, 2015 Image

St. Mary Magdalene de Pazzi
May 25: It would be easy to concentrate on the mystical experiences God ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter