Abortion is an issue that people feel very strongly about. I mean, I don’t know anyone who thinks “meh, whatever.” Personally, I feel very strongly that it is the right of any woman who finds herself in the position to have to make that difficult choice. However, I respect those who believe differently, based upon their religious beliefs, and I’m not going to try to convince an anti-choice person to become a pro-choice person.
What I do not respect, however, is having anyone else’s religious beliefs rule my life or the lives of anyone else in this country. That, my friends, goes against every principle upon which this nation was founded. So this has got me outraged:
As rumors spread that Republicans might vote “present” in order to scuttle the entire bill, even Cardinal Francis George, archbishop of Chicago and president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, called Republican leader John Boehner to make sure the GOP didn’t play any games with the Stupak amendment, sources said.
But the speaker’s decision — like so many others she made during the drafting of this bill — showed Pelosi, a Roman Catholic and committed supporter of reproductive rights, to be more ruthlessly practical than her frequent caricature as an activist, upper-crust liberal from San Francisco would suggest.
It wasn’t just that she was disappointing some members over a last-minute change they disagreed with. She had to take on her closest and senior-most lieutenants on an issue that for many of them is like an article of faith, a defining tenet of what makes them a Democrat. And when she needed the votes, that’s what she did.
The same people who have no problem decrying those Muslim that societies that operate under sharia law will sit back and let the Catholic Church lobby on the issue of abortion here in the United States. Some Muslim societies require women to wear a headscarf, as well as live under restrictive and unequal laws; some Bishops lobby to deny women their rights established under Roe v. Wade. How is that any different? It’s not: same problem, different church (or mosque). Here’s the response from the Americans United for Separation of Church and State:
Barry Lynn, who heads Americans United for Separation of Church and State, said he’s been “horrified” by the church’s influence on the sweeping health care bill.
“What we saw over the weekend was an act of unparalleled arrogance on the part of church officials,” he said. “Basically, they were claiming they would kill health care for the sick and the poor if the Democrats didn’t give them the votes to impose religious doctrine into law.”
“It’s scandalous that this religious group has such extraordinary control over the fate of women’s lives in this country,” Lynn said.