Federal regulation vs. religious freedom

by Rick. 0 Comments

Two areas in life one is always admonished not to talk about are politics and religion. Apparently, if youre not careful, discussing these subjects can be a good way to diminish your friends list.

Unfortunately, from our Right flank its beginning to look more like poli-gion so this month Im going to double down and talk about both of them. Remember, as in all of my columns, Im only stating my opinion here and yours certainly may be different. Its not only okay to have differing opinions and ideologies, its what democracy is all about.

The most recent high-viz political flap is over the issue of whether birth-control measures should be covered (mandated) under insurance plans. I believe it should.

At the most basic level, thirty years of birth control pills are cheaper than even one baby being delivered. Basically, this is simple economics since the total cost of a pregnancy would be thousands of dollars and birth control only in the hundreds. As a matter of fact, a woman could probably get birth control for life less expensively than the cost of one pregnancy.

However, we all know this ballyhoo really isnt about birth control. It is a bellwether of how much federal regulation there is, or might be, or shouldnt be, in our day-to-day lives. In this case, religion is being used as the basis for telling the feds to stay out of their (personal) birth control business.

Whether you agree with federal regulation, or you dont, its here to stay. Unfortunately its needed, because people and corporations cant behave themselves.

Dont misunderstand what Im saying. Im not talking about completely unfettered regulation, but I do support common sense issues such as paying for birth control.

Lets be honest, if this issue had to do with paying for ED medication instead of birth control pills, it would have never seen the light of day.

Another thing I find very interesting in this debate is that the very people, or political party, who want to limit federal regulation is always asking for more federal regulation.

Confused? Let me explain.

This partys members dont want insurance companies to be mandated to pay for birth control to prevent unwanted pregnancies, yet they want the feds, or states, to restrict, to the maximum extent possible, the right to abort the pregnancy should one occur. There were approximately 450 lawsuits and 1100 proposed reproductive laws just last year. If you believe the feds should stay out of your business, then I say keep them out of your medicine cabinet and off your body, too.

It seems to me religion is one of those taboo areas (unless you are evangelical), we dare not talk about because it is, well, a sacred area of one's life. I respect that completely. I doubt you will find anyone who believes in religious freedom more than I do. This includes the right to choose a religion or not, to worship whomever, however and wherever you choose. Where I drastically part ways with religious freedom, is when freedom turns to fervor and someone tries to make their religion become my religion.

I believe in the separation of church and state. Neither the Ten Commandments nor anything else religious should be in public buildings or on public property. The property is public, it belongs to all of us, and surprisingly, we may not all believe the same things. Same goes for opening and closing public meetings with prayer which is why there are churches.

If its your building, your property or your private meeting, then I respect your right to do whatever you choose. If I dont like it, I can choose to stay or leave, but its my choice. I see this as akin to your right to smoke or swing your fist. Both of those rights end at the point where they contact my nose same goes for religion.

I have one last burr under my saddle. Corporations are people, too are you joking?

I have for many years believed we have the best government money can buy. Now there is no doubt. The absurd ruling by SCOTUS which essentially considers corporations to be people regarding the ability to make unfettered political donations in secret to boot.

Its been said that I will believe corporations are people when Texas executes one.

Thats My opinion, whats yours?

Rick Godfrey writes a regular column for fredericknespost.com.

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