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Founding Fathers were right to separate church and state

Tuesday, July 8, 2014 — For days now I’ve watched the talk shows that pretend to be news shows, and I’ve listened to the partisan gibberish from the talking heads on both the left and the right as they shout and pound ad nauseam about the recent United States Supreme Court decision in the Hobby Lobby case.

Unfortunately, I think the pundits on both sides have completely missed the point — this case is not about abortion, Obamacare, politics, the struggle between the left and the right, the alleged personage of corporations or any expression of religious freedom. This is simply a horrible decision in which religious beliefs have been thrust upon the state and all the rest of us.

In Burwell v. Hobby Lobby, the court’s ruling grants a religious exemption from the Affordable Care Act’s contraception mandate because the corporation’s owners object to some forms of contraception the law allows. That statement itself points out the grievous error of this decision — that one’s religious beliefs have the power to negate the law of the land.

I have a friend right here in Susanville with whom I completely disagree who argues all America needs to do to solve its problems is become a nation strictly ruled by the tenants of his particular brand of fundamentalist Christianity. And we can start down that glorious road to redemption in God’s eyes by immediately getting rid of all the abortionists and homosexuals. Only when those sinners are gone, he says, will God bless America again.

Sadly, the Supreme Court’s recent religion-over-state decision takes us a long, long way back down a very slippery slope where an employer’s religious beliefs trump an employee’s right to use a completely legal method of contraception available to everyone else in the country.

For the full Opinion and others, read the Tuesday, July 8, 2014 edition of the Lassen County Times.


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