One can't get away from the news of the First Amendment controversy over women's health coverage in reproductive areas. So, here's my take on it:
I'd planned to write an essay on this down the road. I hesitate to write this short reaction to the week's news. Somewhere down the road I might still assemble my words in a more coherent and in-depth manner. But the issue has me stirred so I write now.
First, once again I have been proved to be of far greater intelligence certain members of the United States House of Representatives. As a consequence I will not here be speaking about reproductive health issues without having a large volume of women's writings from which I can quote. I really don't know much about the dynamics of giving birth. I've been in the room when it happen several times, but it remains a mystery to me.
Now, having disqualified myself on the giving birth or not giving birth choices of women, let me speak to something of which I know.
Does it strike anyone as a bit convoluted that the very politicians who are yelling the loudest that the federal government is threatening the separation of church and state are the very ones who seem to be advocating a Christian theocracy? The first amendment addresses the problem of establishing a state religion. Hmm, would that be a theocracy?
It would do the Christians sounding off about this separation of church and state a bit of good to realize the separation of church and state is an illusion. It is an illusion because the federal government already gives the church preferential treatment over other organizations. For instance:
My church collects a bit of money each Sunday, and occasionally we get some via mail. We do not pay one cent of tax on the money we take in. Special treatment by the government?
Because I am a retired ordained pastor the federal government allows me to designate an obscene percentage of my salary as “housing allowance” which is exempt from income tax. Special treatment by the government?
There is a flip side to this. Whenever I perform a marriage the couple bring me a license issued by the state. When I sign that document following the ceremony I am acting as an agent of the state. If we had real separation of church and state, the couple would get married at the courthouse and then come to the church for their union to be blessed.
Okay, that's enough. You get the point. I'm not going to turn this into a rant. Grandkids are on the way and I don't have much time. I just wanted to tell all the protectors of the church to knock it off. If you really want to separate the church and state stop passing laws that make the church more special than other groups. And here's some information for you. If you ever get your theocratic way I'm moving to Canada.
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