Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Free Ham

The left wants to make the HHS contraception rule about contraception, even sex. Some unfortunate choices on the right have helped them. But it's not about contraception; it's about big government and free exercise of religion.

Let's recast the argument in other terms so everyone remembers what's really going on.
Today the Obama administration announced new rules requiring all restaurants to provide a free ham sandwich to anyone who asks for one. The rule only requires bread and ham; cheese, vegetables, and condiments would still be paid for by the customer.

Restaurant groups quickly complained about the cost of complying with such a mandate, but supporters insisted that food is a fundamental right to which all citizens are entitled.

Religious groups cried foul, claiming many business owners — e.g., Jewish, Muslim, and vegetarian — cannot in good conscience serve a ham sandwich to customers, but government officials (who asked to remain anonymous because they had not been authorized to speak on the issue) responded that they were only asked to serve, not eat, the ham.
Hopefully this will raise a number of questions in your mind. By what authority does the government require someone to provide an item, any item, to a third party? Is there really such a right? Does the existence of this right mean that someone else is obliged to provide it to them?

And, most of all, what possessed the government to handle this in a way that would require millions of Americans to violate their religious beliefs?

The contraception flap is not about sex or birth control. It's about what limits we are going to place on our government.

1 comment:

Marsha said...

I really appreciate the way you approached this issue. It brings right down where the rubber meets the road. Thanks for taking the time to blog on this issue.