Saturday, July 19, 2014

Time for the Catholic Church to decide

On the one hand, the Catholic Church doesn't want to lose federal funding.

On the other hand, the Church doesn't want to employ non-heterosexuals, which is the major reason the Church is at risk of losing federal funding.

This is as clear a case of wanting to have its cake and eat it, too, as I've seen in a while.

I've said it before: "Faith-based charities may be doing good with federal money, but the price is just too high." That price includes the legal right to discriminate in hiring, enshrined during the G. W. Bush administration (see my aforementioned post).

The net result of our government's current policies is, the consciences of religious believers are granted greater deference than those of non-believers. That's discriminatory.

The Catholic Church has been quite vocal about claiming religious liberty is under siege. My response?

Hey, bishops, I have a solution for you: if you don't like government policy, stop taking its money.
The corresponding advice for the rest of us is, we must stop relying on religious organizations to provide social services. If they want to provide charity out of their own resources, fine. But to create situations where people are forced to rely on a religious group for help — where, for instance, a Catholic-run charitable hospital is the only recourse for health care — is simply untenable today.

So, Catholic Church, you have a choice. You can either adhere to governmental guidelines for receiving governmental money, or you can forego those funds. This business of carving out exemptions in laws for you, for no discernible reason other than that you've successfully guilt-tripped us into doing it before, won't fly any more.

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