People of faith across the globe have been under attack for many years. The Obama Administration has ramped up the attack in this country over the past three years.
In the face of this increased attack on religion, the United States Catholic Bishops have released a Statement calling for "A Fortnight of Freedom." From June 21 to July 4 of this year, events will be held across the country to highlight the need for all Americans to defend our religious liberty.
The obvious impetus for the Bishops' action is the recent mandate by the Obama Administration that requires employers to facilitate and fund abortion-inducing drugs and sterilization for their employees. The American Center for Law & Justice is challenging this mandate in court on behalf of a St. Louis business owner.
Americans sometimes take for granted the rights we have. We remember them when we see that many people across the world do not have the basic civil rights we enjoy. And, we remember them when our government tries to take them away.
The Catholic Bishops correctly point out that this attack on religious liberty is not an issue particular only to Catholics. Rather, "[i]t is an American issue. . . . [O]ur nation's founders embraced freedom of religion as an essential condition of a free and democratic society. . . . If our obligations and duties to God are impeded, or even worse, contradicted by the government, then we can no longer claim to be a land of the free, and beacon of hope for the world."
Americans have disagreements, including over the tenets of faith. Now is the time to set aside those disagreements. We all need to oppose the attack on our religious freedoms. Our opposition must be constant and unified.
As the Bishops explain, "[w]hat is at stake is whether America will continue to have a free, creative, and robust civil society - or whether the state alone will determine who gets to contribute to the common good, and how they get to do it."
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