Religious Freedom

Dear Editor:

The current uproar over “freedom of religion” relevant to women’s reproductive health care doesn’t recognize the central point; when an institution accepts Federal grant money, they’re required to abide by Federal regulations.

This has been the case for schools, municipalities, states…. everyone but the Catholic church since the inception of Federal grant funding during the Nixon administration.

The impetus to finally require the the church to abide by the same rules as the rest of us came about because the US Conference of Catholic Bishops accepted money to help victims of human trafficing (i.e., the sex trade) recover, but refused to fund reproductive health care for them. When the Fed declined to renew the USCCB grant, the “freedom of religion” howls began, and have escalated since the health care mandate was extended to insurance coverage by institutions accepting Federal money.

The obvious question, then, is if abiding by Federal rules is so morally objectionable, why accept Federal money? People who object to the requirements can free themselve from them – just free themselves from the money that comes with them!

Tom Morgan