A showdown is looming between the Catholic Church and the Obama administration over the pending Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA).
When it last was introduced into the legislature, FOCA defined abortion as a "fundamental right" that no government can "deny" or "interfere with." That language, FOCA's opponents warn, would help overturn abortion restrictions such as parental notification, laws banning certain procedures and constraints on federal funding. It would also appear to require hospitals to offer abortions to their patients, even hospitals that believe that killing unborn children is a terrible evil.
There are some 620 Catholic hospitals in the United States. They will either refuse to comply with the law - if it has no exception for conscience - or they will close their doors.
How many jobs will this cost? How many suffering patients will be unable to find treatment if the hospitals close down? And for what? So that some leftist ideologues can shove their values down everyone else's throats?
This is not a pro-life/pro-choice issue. Pro-lifers will oppose FOCA, of course, but so, too, should every pro-choicer who has ever argued that a woman should have the right to decide on the basis of her own conscience whether to have an abortion. If the decision to have an abortion is a matter of conscience which should be respected then so, too, is the decision to decline to perform them. FOCA, as it is currently believed to be written, is indeed a flagrantly anti-choice bill.
The Obama administration has already seen the stock market plummet on its watch and with it the retirements of millions of people. Now it is poised to force Catholic hospitals out of business. These are not hopeful trends.
For more on the FOCA showdown see here.RLC