Many conservatives express a dichotomous opinion of Pope Francis. While he has generally stood firm on many of the Catholic Church’s social values, his views on certain other issues are seen as a significant shift to the left.
Rush Limbaugh, for instance, characterized the pontiff’s views on income inequality as “pure Marxism coming out of the mouth of the Pope.”
During his recent meeting with Barack Obama, however, Pope Francis expressed direct concerns regarding ObamaCare that might reassure some who question his vision for the faith.
According to a Vatican statement, the pope expressed uneasiness regarding “questions of particular relevance” regarding American policy. Though ObamaCare was not explicitly mentioned, the discussion of “rights to religious freedom, life, and conscientious objection” seemed to mirror the current Supreme Court battle over contraception mandates included in the unpopular law.
Obama’s previous meeting with Francis’ predecessor also included a dialogue about abortion. He told then-Pope Benedict that he would work to reduce abortions in the U.S. the year before his healthcare law was approved.
Religious business owners, however, contend that the law’s mandate that they provide birth control and what many consider abortifacient drugs to their employees constitutes an attack on their constitutionally protected expression of faith. The Supreme Court heard arguments from the owners of two businesses this week and is expected to issue a decision regarding whether corporations are entitled to such religious protection.
This particular aspect of ObamaCare has become one of the most contentious issues throughout its implementation. More than 100 individual lawsuits have been filed by objectors in recent years, culminating with arguments this week before the nation’s highest court.
Pope Francis’ willingness to take Obama to task over his law’s unconscionable requirements further bolsters the widespread belief that government compliance should not require employers to violate their own morals.
While there are ample reasons that millions of Americans continue to oppose the law, resulting in Obama’s latest enrollment extension, this issue is the most serious to those who consider God’s law superior to the laws of man.
–B. Christopher Agee
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Photo Credit: Edgar Jiménez (Creative Commons)
This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom