Last night, I heard Senator Rick Santorum tell us that President Obama has attacked Catholics and freedom of religion by barring church-controlled businesses from excluding contraception care in their employees' health plans.
Joining the shriek-fest against the president's decision, the sanctimonious little ex-senator prattled on about big bad government crushing religious freedom.
That's just arse-backwards.
Obama's decision is a defense of religious freedom.
Religious freedom is a right of people, not their bosses.
No damn employer should be allowed to tell an employee what medicine may be prescribed by their doctor based on the business owner's beliefs.
Now, unlike so many others who are going around screaming, "Freedom of religion" or "First Amendment rights violation" or some such overdramatic shit that they didn't shout when, you know, the Bush administration enforced a similar rule, the Rude Pundit's not gonna pretend to be a constitutional scholar. But he's pretty fucking sure that if you impose your religious beliefs on your employees, and the government allows you to do so, that's more or less establishing religion. You have the right to practice your faith. You don't have the right to infringe on someone's right not to, especially if your ass receives money from the federal government, like, say Catholic University.
Of course, none of this current anger really has much to do with upholding the moral code of the Catholic Church. Otherwise, we'd be seeing John Boehner and Mitch McConnell out there demanding the end of capital punishment and the beginning of a fuck of a lot more programs to assist the poor.
No, as usual, this is about how the right-wing outrage machine can be cranked up to 11, especially in the wake of the Planned Parenthood triumph in the Susan G. Komen Foundation funding affair, and how poll numbers and money can be raised on the bodies of women. It's about who controls those bodies: the women, who can choose whether or not they use contraception, or their employers, who can make the expensive drugs impossible for their female employees to afford. Or right-wing religious leaders, who have been trying so hard to wrangle the unruly female body back into the maternity ward and the house. Or the GOP, who must just no longer give a damn about women voting for them.
To quote Coultergeist (heh): "...and then we lose."