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Free Speech Archives

Once hailed, RFRA now considered bigoted.

Once hailed, RFRA now considered bigoted.

Indiana has come under intense fire from the Left for passing a law just like one that Bill Clinton signed in 1993, and was supported by conservative Christian groups, the ACLU, and People for the American Way, among other unlikely allies. More interestingly, it was supported in a huge way by Democrats.

That was then, this is now. What happened in the intervening decades? I explain it in this episode, as well as what RFRA really means. (Hint: it is not open season on gays.)

Mentioned links:

Indiana’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act, Explained

Remember When Democrats Used To Support Religious Freedom?

WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT RELIGIOUS FREEDOM RESTORATION ACTS

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Crossroads; politics and religion

Crossroads; politics and religion

Gordon College has petitioned the government based on its religious beliefs, but the Mayor of Salem, Mass. wants to punish them for it. Religious tolerance isn’t what it used to be. Maybe this is payback for the Witch Trials.

Can you pray in a mall? Well, it depends on whether the mall owners will get called out on their decision in public.

Mentioned links:

GUILTY: For Just Being Christian

Understanding the Issues: Gordon College, Religious Liberty and Executive Order 13672

Are Christian Colleges free to be Christian?

Georgia mall not buying into group’s spiritual health, prayer

Hundreds Rally in Support of Right to Pray at Georgia Mall

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Celebrating the Hobby Lobby decision (AP)

Celebrating the Hobby Lobby decision (AP)

For this episode, I’m taking on just one topic; the “Hobby Lobby” case decided by the Supreme Court.

On Monday, June 30th, the Supreme Court handed down a 5-4 decision saying that companies that are “closely held”, as Hobby Lobby is, could opt out of the new ObamaCare requirement that they cover contraceptives for women, including drugs that induce abortions. Those on the Right were cheering this win for religious freedom, but it occurred to me that, since the vote was 5-4, we’re just one Supreme Court justice away from losing our religion, er, religious freedom. The ruling from the court did not couch it in First Amendment terms, per se, but make no mistake; had it gone the other way, it would have been a precedent for continued chipping away at this constitutional protecting. The whole idea that religion is something you can only practice in your house of worship – or “freedom of worship”, as it has be redefined by the Clintons and others on the Left – is what has brought us to this point.

What kinds of people or government consider religious liberty something to avoid? There are some countries out there that actively do that, but I’m not so sure we want to live in them.

Another part of the Hobby Lobby ruling you may not have heard about; a more strong affirmation that corporations can indeed have a religious component to them. From a story on Politico, “The court appeared to reject, 7-2, the Obama administration’s argument that for-profit companies cannot assert religious rights under RFRA.” RFRA stands for the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, a law created by Democrats, which had massive bipartisan support, and was signed into law by President Clinton. Just remember that when you hear Democrats complain about the ruling based on a law they supported.

As previous guest to Consider This, Dale Franks, put it, “If you don’t want your employer making decisions about your health, then you probably shouldn’t ask them to pay for it.”

A couple other bits of information typically lost among the snarkiness coming from the Left include the fact that Hobby Lobby employees make significantly more than the minimum wage; $14 an hour is the minimum for full-time, and $9.50 for part time. So what contraceptives won’t be covered, they can certainly afford them on their own.

But the other not-so-well-known bit of info is that Hobby Lobby insurance already covers 16 out of 20 contraceptive methods on the ObamaCare list. The other 4 are generally after-the-fact, morning-after type that are, in the belief of the Green family that owns the company, tantamount to abortion. You want to prevent conception? They’re with you. You want to end a life? Eh, not so much.

Postscript: During the episode, you’ll hear me talk about some information from a ReligionNews.com article. In it, they cite a Kaiser Health Tracking Poll, released in April that said that a majority (55 percent) said yes, a for-profit business owner with religious objections to birth control be subject to the requirement, “even if it violates their owners’ personal religious beliefs”. However, I’ve recently seen a Weekly Standard article noting that a new Rasmussen poll finds that 49 percent of American voters support a religious exemption to the federal government’s contraception mandate, while 39 percent oppose such an exemption. They’re polls, so they really just measure attitudes at a point in time, and who knows what might have changed between April and June. Just an FYI.

Mentioned links:

Five takeaways from the Hobby Lobby case

SCOTUS sides with Hobby Lobby on birth control

Want birth control? Go buy it. Nobody is stopping you.

When you find out how much Hobby Lobby pays their employees tell every liberal you know

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Two years old

Two years old

It’s been two years since I launched my own podcast, and once again I’m giving the 10 minute time limit the day off. I’m not going that much over, but hey, I did this for my 1st anniversary, so there’s precedent.

This time out, I’m focusing mostly on social conservatism. The idea of tradition, history and experience being a good reference for what we should do now works just as well for fiscal and political policy as it does for social policy. The idea is sound, regardless of where it’s applied. And that’s why I’ve been doing this show for 2 years; to get the word out that this idea of conservatism works. It isn’t always practiced as well as I would like by the guys I vote for, but at least I’m not ceding more ground.

Another problem we’ll see is that the folk least likely to give you your freedom are not conservatives, in  spite of how conservatives generally get portrayed. While not a social issue per se, it does show the underlying intolerance of those who seek to remove all dissent, rather than have a healthy debate.

Mentioned links:

The Matt Walsh Blog

This person is planning to kill me in order to teach me that I shouldn’t be mean and hateful

This poor child is confused, not ‘transgendered.’

Google+ conversation with Christopher Li-Reid Read the rest of this entry

Jason & David Benham

Jason & David Benham

Back in episode 73, I mentioned the case of Brendan Eich, the new CEO of a technology company, who was drummed out of his job because he had the audacity to give money to a cause he believed in. It wasn’t politically correct, however, and he paid for it with his job.

This time out, I have yet another example of folks who would describe themselves as “tolerant” unwilling to tolerate dissenting opinions, even, as with Eich, those opinions have nothing at all to do with the job at hand. But they lost their job because of the oxymoronic “Tolerance Police”.

And a commenter on my Google+ page has an interesting point to make on this subject. Can you be against an agenda without being against the people pushing that agenda?

Mentioned links:

Christian-hating liberal fascists have once again demonstrated their ‘tolerance’

Benham brothers lose HGTV show after ‘anti-gay’ remarks

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The "Freedom of Speech" Thought Police

The “Freedom of Speech” Thought Police

Freedom of speech is under attack in this county. The irony is that those who call themselves “tolerant” and “free thinkers” are, very often, the ones pushing against this right, both in our culture and via the legal system. Two examples in this episode include a man pushed out of his job because of an unrelated political contribution 5 years ago, and a group of people denied that right because they can speak louder and more than most people. In both these high-profile cases, the “Progressives” are most certainly not for progress.

Mentioned links:

Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich Steps Down

Supreme Court strikes down overall limits on political contributions

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I had a listener comment on one of the previous episodes, and I wanted to respond to his comment, especially the part where his criticism was absolutely on target. I said “I wasn’t guessing” when I contended that Ban Ki Moon hadn’t denounced anti-Christian or anti-Jewish speech like he did with recent anti-Islamic speech, but then I didn’t provide any examples. Listen as your humbled host is properly corrected.

But a more accurate statement isn’t really that much different. I tried to find similar examples, but Google News couldn’t find them. If you can, let me know, but for now it seems to me that, yes, threatening life and property is the way to get the UN’s attention.

Post a comment here or call me at (267) CALL-CT-0, (267) 225-5280,  and let me know what you think.

Mentioned links:

Episode 15 with comments

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Can you be fairly represented by someone who doesn’t look like you, or makes more money than you, or isn’t your same age? In a new podcast DecodeDC, Andrea Seabrook (in an otherwise fascinating podcast episode) seems to make the case that, no, you can’t. Let’s look at history to test that theory.

Romney releases his tax information, proving himself “innocent” of paying $0 in taxes some years. So instead of wondering now who Harry Reid’s anonymous source was and why they were so wrong, the Left asks more information from … Romney! It’s like the Birthers who just couldn’t accept a birth certificate from Obama. Thing is, we need a catch name for these tax-insane Democrats. Post your ideas in the comments.

UN Secretary General George Orwell Ban Ki Moon says that freedom of expression should be protected…except when it shouldn’t be, like when certain groups get offended. (Any guesses one what group he’s currently trying to make exceptions for?)

Post a comment here or call me at (267) CALL-CT-0 (that is, (267) 225-5280)  and let me know what you think.

Mentioned links:

DecodeDC Episode One: House of (mis)Representatives

Romneys to Release Taxes

10 Questions Romney Should Answer About His Taxes

U.N. chief says anti-Islam filmmaker abused freedom of expression

WH Silent Over Demands to Denounce ‘Piss Christ’ Artwork

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