The Catholic Thing
Obama’s War on Religious Freedom Print E-mail
By George J. Marlin   
Wednesday, 22 August 2012

During the 2008 presidential campaign, Senator Barack Obama gave voters the impression that he rejected the position of Democratic Party elders that moral principles are an imposition in the body politic. As he said in a 2004 speech:  “Secularists are wrong when they ask believers to leave their religion at the door before entering into the public square. . . .To say that men and women should not inject their ‘personal morality’ into public policy debates is a practical absurdity.  Our law is by definition a codification of morality, much of it grounded in the Judeo-Christian tradition.”

Fast forward four years, and we now know that Obama not only conned us, but was dead set on secularizing every aspect of American life and waging war against religious liberty.

To get an overview of how bad he has been, read No Higher Power:  Obama’s War on Religious Freedom by Phyllis Schlafly, founder and president of Eagle Forum and George Neumayr of the American Spectator. This book describes how Obama enthusiastically embraced Saul Alinsky’s tactics to promote his ideological agenda and his political career.  A key Alinsky maxim he practiced, “garb your action in the language of morality.”

No Higher Power proves that Obama and his appointed subordinates have been imposing a secular agenda and have strived “to make government the national arbiter of morality, to subordinate religious freedom to government coercion.”  And while the most talked about attack on religious liberty has been the Department of Health and Human Service’s decree that Catholic institutions must “pay for contraceptives, sterilization, and abortion-inducing pills of their employees,” there have been plenty of other assaults that have not received much publicity. 

Here are a few pickings from Schlafly and Neumayr’s “Index of Obama’s Hostility to Religion”:

  • Upon taking office in January 2009, Obama revoked Bush-era executive orders that prohibited U.S. tax dollars from being transferred to non-government agencies that perform abortions abroad.
  • The Obama Administration told the public in February 2011 that conscience protections for pro-life doctors and nurses who work at federally-funded hospitals that perform abortions would be eliminated.
  • Obama stopped the White House tradition of sponsoring an event on National Prayer Day.
  • Obama eliminated the District of Columbia school-voucher program.  A majority of those voucher’s were used at Catholic parochial schools.
  • The Obama Administration terminated funding for abstinence-only sex-education courses.
  • Obama’s Department of Homeland Security released a ridiculous report that argued pro-lifers could be a serious threat to National Security. Pro-lifers are potential terrorists because the DOHS views them as anti-government, right-wing extremists dedicated to a single issue. 
  • Obama approved a defense authorization bill in October 2009 that included “hate crimes” legislation. Senator James DeMint denounced the legislation insisting that “it amounted to ‘thought crime’ legislation armed at silencing Christians.” 
  • The Rev. Franklin Graham’s invitation to speak at the Pentagon’s National Day of Prayer in April 2010 was canceled because the leftist Military Religious Freedom Foundation falsely labeled him an Islamaphobe.  Graham – who told CNN the charge was nonsense and that, though he disagreed with some of the teaching, he did not bear any Muslims ill will – was publicly insulted by a Pentagon spokesman. Graham’s theological views on Islam, Colonel Tom Collins said, were “not appropriate. . . .We’re an all-inclusive military.  We honor all faiths. . . .Our message to our service and civilian workforce is about the need for diversity and appreciation of all faiths.”
  • When quoting the phrase in the Declaration of Independence, “All men are created equal. . .,” Obama has dropped the words “by their Creator.”
  • Obama, in February 2011, ordered the Justice Department to stop defending the federal Defense of Marriage in court cases. 
  • The Department of Veteran Affairs prohibited burial ceremonies at Houston National Cemetery from invoking the name of Jesus Christ.  After veterans protested, the ban was lifted. 
  • The Air Force canceled a Just War Theory course that had been taught for twenty years because some of the content examined Christian and Biblical thought.  A spokesmen said, “Senior leadership looked [at the material for the course] and said, no, we could do better than this.
  • The Walter Reid Medical Center ordered that “No religious items (i.e., Bibles, reading materials) are allowed to be given away or used [on] a visit.”  The regulation was dropped because of negative public reactions.
  • The Defense Department flouted the Federal Defense of Marriage Act in September 2011 by permitting same-sex marriage ceremonies on military installations.
  • The Air Force Academy terminated its participation in Operation Christmas Gift, a charity that distributes over 8 million shoebox gifts to poor kids in 100 countries. The reason: “An evangelical Christian message is also included in the boxes.”
  • The Department of Education announced in February 2012 that it “will no longer forgive student loans in exchange for public service if that service is related to religion.” 
  • The Air Force in February 2012 removed the word “God” from the Rapid Capabilities Office motto.  It is now “Doing Miracles with Other People’s Money,” not “Doing God’s Work with Other People’s Money.” 
  • The Army cautioned Catholic Chaplains not to distribute a letter from the Archbishop for the Military Services U.S.A., Timothy P. Broglio, because it criticized the Department of Health and Human Services contraception and abortion mandate on Catholic institutions. 
            These are just a few of the Obama Administration’s assaults on religious liberty. To learn more, pick up a copy of No Higher Power.
George J. Marlin is an editor of The Quotable Fulton Sheen and the author of The American Catholic VoterHis most recent book is Narcissist Nation: Reflections of a Blue-State Conservative.
The Catholic Thing is a forum for intelligent Catholic commentary. Opinions expressed by writers are solely their own.

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Comments (15)Add Comment
written by Jack,CT, August 22, 2012
The better would be "ATTACK" on Religion.The idea of taking
"God" out of all our "Culture" is scary.Thanks for a very
informative read.
written by Dave, August 22, 2012
We've been living through a classic bait-and-switch, and the level of denial by those who fell for the ruse is high.
written by Manfred, August 22, 2012
Yes, George, and the fiend you describe above has been invited to be an honored guest at this year's Al Smith Dinner by the Cdl/Abp of New York who is also the president of the USCCB. What are YOU, George, and the powerful Catholics in your circle doing to make sure that this obscenity does not occur?
written by Quaecumque Vera, August 22, 2012
I am not sure this is in the book but Obama also lied to Pope Benedict's face. What kind of person does this?
written by Frank, August 22, 2012
...and a considerable number of American Catholic Bishops will vote to re-elect Obama along with a considerable number of the Catholic laity. We have met the enemy and the enemy and the enemy is us.
written by Sue, August 22, 2012
I agree with Manfred. What is even scarier than the Al Smith dinner is what that invite shows about what has already gone on between USCCB and the political hierarchies. No further explanation is needed for why we have Pelosi, Biden, Sebelius, hordes of "Catholic" congressman and judges all blithely living out their baby butchering policies while elected by hordes of Catholics who think they've been okayed by their bishops.

The Al Smith invite explains a lot - it is of a piece with the USCCB staffers that negotiated with Pelosi to enact the Stupak amendment permitting Obamacare and rape/incest abortions, and crowed about what a Catholic achievement that was. It is of a piece with the LAST Al Smith presidential dinner in 2008 whose photo op installed Obama in the presidency.

Why are we not, even now, pursuing an impeach strategy against the monster depicted in above article? Why have we done nothing in four years to deal with this tyrant? We knew he allowed babies to die in hospital closets even before he was elected in 2008...why are we waiting till election time now to even discuss this, unless it is only to install the next CFR-approved alternative to Obama.

Even now, the best way to respond to problems detailed above is to impeach. Catholics visiting their congressman's offices en masse, with the support of their bishops, could say a lot.
written by Bill M., August 22, 2012
At some point we have to stop calling Obama's actions attacks on "religious freedom" and acknowledge that he fundamentally denies the natural law and justice.
written by Seanachie, August 22, 2012
"Sed libera nos a malo" November 6, 2012.
written by Randall, August 22, 2012
I've probably posted this comment before, but I'll say it again. I sat through an RCIA program 7 years ago mainly run by liberal dissidents and one of the leaders blithely commented that he didn't think Americans would ever be the victims of an attack on our religious freedoms. I pray that man isn't preparing to vote for Obama this year.
written by Phel, August 22, 2012
He also had all Christian symbols covered up when he spoke at Georgetown, just after the election.
written by Thomas C. Coleman, Jr., August 22, 2012
Obama will get large proportion of even the Mass-attending vote again this time, and some of that will because pastors tell their congregations that getting even with rich people and opening our borders to the poor is more important than saving the lives of the unborn, protecting marriage and protecting freedom of religion. I've heard priests claim that Obama's socilaist policies will reudce the "need' for wome to abort their babies. Just last Suncay on Immaculate Heart Radio I heard a spot about the non-negotiables in which racial discrmination was inserted into the list, an addition that was clealry made to sabotage the message by asssiting the Obama gang's claim their their opponenets are racists and thereby givng the listener an excuse to vote for Mr. O. In 2008 I saw a bishop publicly present a priest with a sweatshirt emblazened with "Friends Don't Let Friends Vote Republican." Yeah, yeah, I know. The GOP is not perfect either. But none of its leaders are disciples of Marx by way of Alinzky. Cdl Doan says that the Chruch did not pick this fight. But His Eminence should have seen this one coming.
written by Louise, August 24, 2012
Thomas Coleman, I really disagree with you on this one! I think the bishops are very concerned about the threats and have managed to communicate this to their flock. This does not fade easily.
I also think they are forewarned about how dioceses were used last time by the Catholics United type groups and will try to make sure this does't happen again. I guess it wouldn't hurt to drop an email to our bishops to ask that they make sure no parishes or anyone in the chancery is distributing info from the pseudo-Catholic groups as happened in some places last election...just in case!
written by Tom Perna , August 24, 2012
He is Public Enemy #1 to the United States of America. Another four years of this empty suit with tyrannical and narcissistic values cannot happen. Let's hope that he does not win.
written by Jason, September 05, 2012
I think that you are all mistaking religious freedom with Christianity ruling. I am Christian, but I also understand that everyone else is entitled to their own views. Who are we to judge those with different ideals. You say that allowing same sex marriage is an attack on religious freedom, but not everyone's religion holds the view that same sex marriage is not allowed. Churches can disagree, but it is not up to the government to say who can and can't be married. When churches infringe on others' beliefs it is just "spreading the gospel", but if others who don't share those same beliefs get the freedom to live how they would like, then they are attacking your religion. Learn to live among those with other life styles. You may disagree, but you do not have the right to condemn. Do not judge, lest ye be judged. Get a grip guys.
written by Justin B, July 16, 2013
Right on Jason, it's as much freedom FROM religion as it is freedom OF religion.

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