The latest kerfuffle on the Health Care bill is that the Obama church has leashed the Am Cath types against the Catholic bishops.

For those of you who are not Catholic, much of the church bureaucracy is full of those who claim Vatican II to justify changing the Catholic church into a Episcopalian wanna be church.

Luckily, this group is slowly being replaced by “John Paul II” Catholics who have actually read the Vatican II documents and aren’t fooled by the propaganda, but in the meanwhile, these self proclaimed “Reformers” continue to damage the faith of believers and allow the media to equate an astroturf organization such as “Catholics for Free Choice” as having authority as equal as the bishops.

However, some bishops are both shepherds and Christians, who have decided that “can’t we all get along” doesn’t mean keeping quiet when the government tries to pull a fast one.

So now, if you look carefully on the back pages of your paper, you will find that the Catholic bishops are very worried about the Health Care bill, with it’s stealth promotion of abortion, and they are worried about how the conscience rights of health care workers will be defended under the bill.

These worries are very real.

The Am Church lobby insists that Obama promised that our tax payer money would never fund abortion, and then there is the Hyde amendment that prevents taxpayer money from being used.

Well, that first part is a joke: The first thing that the President did was to fund NGO’s that do abortions overseas and pressure foreign governments to legalize abortion. Right now, prolife Christians and Muslims are fighting it in our congress here in the Philippines, and Indonesian legislators have recently passed an abortion law over the objections of their Muslim, Christian and Buddhist population.

As for job protection: the conscience clause regulations were rescinded last January by the Obama administration, leaving only a vague thirty year old civil rights law to protect the jobs of those who refuse to cooperate with abortion or euthanasia.

But the bishop’s failure to fall in line has resulted in a full court press by “catholics” in the media.

Joseph Kennedy, for example, claimed

the bishops are fanning “flames of dissent and discord.” He said he doesn’t understand how the bishops could oppose a plan to extend health care to millions of uninsured people.

The Washington Post, who has a “Catholic” “expert” in it’s “religion” forum, has it’s resident Am-church writer similarly pooh poohs the bishops’ worries:

The overall good to be achieved by supporting the bill clearly outweighs a backyard skirmish over technical wording. If the bishops need to add clarifying language to proposed legislation that repeats the Hyde Amendment, there are better ways of lobbying, I would think.

This is ingenious, of course, because it is precisely the details that are important. (as the saying says: The Devil is in the details).

One not only has to insure that the details have been discussed for their possible implications, but one has to recognize that a vague detail might easily be reinterpreted by a court or a HHS bureaucrat to mean something that Congress never intended it to mean.

Right now, various forms of “separating” the private vs the public contribution to the abortion friendly health insurance is supposed to solve the problem. This is smoke and mirrors.

There are a few Democrats who just might be able to stop the juggernaut, but as time goes on, one worries more and more that they will cave in.

Bioethics writer Wesley Smith points out how the bill could be fixed:

They could spell out explicitly that non therapeutic abortion is not to be covered by any public plan or by any policy which is fully or partially paid for by public subsidies or vouchers. They could require that abortion coverage be a rider, the cost of which would be fully paid for by the insurance policy holder. They could revoke the Capps Amendment that gave the bureaucrats the power to determined whether abortion would be a covered service under the plan. They could make sure that the bureaucrats–who will put in most of the dirty details–cannot cover abortion.

They could, but they won’t.  They want abortion to be covered, I think, more than they want a health care bill to pass.

The irony is not universal health care that is being pushed as a victory for human rights might easily morph to a victory for social engineering against society’s most vulnerable.

Right now, health care if fragmented, but this also means less uniformity, and that the smaller companies allow grass roots imput.

Universal health care paid and regulated by government bureaucrats, even if it includes insurance companies, can easily become a monolith that will embed an anti life philosophy into health care. This is not only abortion, but euthansia, “futile care” theory, justifying denial of routine care to those whose “QALY” (quality of life years) are bad, and cutting back needed services in the name of cost control.

Bishop Chaput notes that there is a huge philosophical gap between the cost cutters and bioethics experts and how God sees things.

Every child with Down syndrome, every adult with special needs—in fact, every unwanted unborn child, every person who is poor, weak, abandoned, or homeless—is an icon of God’s face and a vessel of his love. How we treat these persons—whether we revere them and welcome them or throw them away in distaste—shows what we really believe about human dignity, both as individuals and as a nation.

 Catholic public officials who take God seriously cannot support laws that attack human dignity without lying to themselves, misleading others, and abusing the faith of their fellow Catholics.

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Nancy Reyes is a retired physician living in the rural Philippines. Her website is Finest Kind Clinic and Fishmarket.

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