5:34 PM, Aug 1, 2013 • By MARIA SANTOS
Women Speak for Themselves, a grassroots organization of more than 40,000 women for religious freedom, gathered today at Lafayette Square in Washington, D.C. to protest enforcement of the Health and Human Services mandate, which requires employers (including some religious institutions) to cover contraceptives for employees. The mandate went into effect for for-profit organizations a year ago today.
“I went to Georgetown Law. But my classmate Sandra Fluke does not speak for me … I can speak for myself. And I speak for religious freedom,” said Maya Noronha, an attorney, to applause from the protesters.
The group of women rallied in the square to hear an hour of brief speeches from women of varied backgrounds. Afterward, some protesters went to Capitol Hill to meet with members of Congress to urge them to fight the mandate.
Helen Alvaré, a law professor at George Mason University and WSFT founder, led the speeches, saying, “The political class of D.C. today doesn’t believe that we exist…the idea that we have to fear that we’re a small group and we don’t really have younger women on our side, set that aside.”
Some of the biggest cheers from the crowd came when speaker Cynthia Wood, a lawyer and environmental scientist, read from the recently published final regulations of the mandate, which argue that the state has a compelling interest in providing contraception for the sake of “helping women contribute to society to the same degree as men.” The women alternately booed and cheered as Wood thundered, “How dare they tell me, a mother who works outside the home, or any mother, that we do not contribute to society the same as men?”
Dr. Grazie Pozo Christie of the Catholic Association represented Latino women against the mandate, saying, “Latino immigrants have come to the United States not looking for handouts. … We came here looking for freedom.” Later, in an interview, she said, “I think the government is happy to use Latino women as props in their push to talk about the ‘war on women.’ I think it’s easy to talk about Latino women, how we tend to be poor and we need more reproductive rights access. ... We don’t prize contraception or the access to contraception above other things, like religious liberty, and they need to know that about us.”
At one point, one of the protesters yelled, “The sixties are over!” The crowd laughed, and Alvaré quipped, “We’re kind of the hippies fighting against the man now. The establishment is doing something that is no longer interesting, creative, or freeing—and we are.”
Not all of the women against the mandate came to the protest, of course, but according to Janice Weber of Women for Women, an organization of over 2,500, they were all represented. “Many women who are here are in leadership roles, I would venture to say that every woman represents many other women who cannot be here,” she told me.
The protest was relatively small, but women from about 20 different states attended.
The IRS prepares to enforce Obamacare’s contraception mandate. Jun 17, 2013, Vol. 18, No. 38 • By ASHLEY E. MCGUIRE
On August 1, the one-year “safe harbor” for religious charities objecting to provisions of Obamacare will end. Starting then, these nonprofit employers will be forced to violate their religious beliefs or pay large fines. In charge of collecting the fines will be our recently newsworthy friends at the Internal Revenue Service.
11:25 AM, Dec 14, 2012 • By MICHAEL WARREN
Louisiana governor Bobby Jindal, widely believed to be a potential Republican candidate for president in 2016, has an op-ed in Friday's Wall Street Journal encouraging the government to permit the sale of oral contraceptives without a prescription. Here's an excerpt:
3:35 PM, Oct 5, 2012 • By MICHAEL WARREN
Democrats had one overarching message at a rally Friday: Barack Obama is for free contraception and abortion rights, and Mitt Romney isn’t.
“It is not some far right, extremist cause.”11:37 AM, Sep 11, 2012 • By JULIANNE DUDLEY
Addressing a largely Catholic audience Monday night at an event sponsored by the John Carroll Society in Washington, D.C., Cardinal Timothy Dolan emphasized the non-sectarian, non-partisan—catholic with a small “c”—nature of the fight for religious liberty. “It is not some far right, extremist cause,” Dolan said, but an “American human rights issue.”
1:35 AM, Sep 5, 2012 • By JOHN MCCORMACK
In the hours before network TV broadcast the Democratic National Convention to millions of Americans, the convention was shaping up to be a rip-roaring abortion jamboree.
12:55 AM, Sep 5, 2012 • By JONATHAN V. LAST
Four years ago in Denver, the group Democrats for Life hosted an event. A tiny cadre of anti-abortion Democrats assembled in a hotel conference room and were treated to a hopeful talk led by Senator Bob Casey and Representatives Lincoln Davis and Heath Shuler. The pro-life caucus was a minority in the party, they realized, but it was a crucial bloc and it would not be left behind by a President Obama, he of the purple states and the hope and change. A new era for pro-life Democrats was just around the corner.
‘Liberation’ and its consequences.Jul 23, 2012, Vol. 17, No. 42 • By JONATHAN V. LAST
‘Contraceptive sex,” writes Mary Eberstadt, is “the fundamental social fact of our time.”
2:36 PM, May 24, 2012 • By DANIEL HALPER
Steve Hayes, with A.B. Stoddard and Charles Krauthammer, last night on Fox News:
12:19 PM, May 24, 2012 • By HOWARD SLUGH
On May 7, 2012, the Rabbinical Council of America (RCA), the largest organization of rabbis in the United States, approved a resolution recognizing that the Health and Human Services (HHS) regulation that mandates employers provide access to contraceptives, abortifacient drugs, and sterilizations forces many employers to “violate the injunctions of their religion.” The RCA, which represents more than 1,000 Orthodox rabbis, urged the Obama administration to amend the regulation to protect the religious liberties of all employers.
7:05 AM, Apr 23, 2012 • By VINCENT PHILLIP MUñOZ
The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has taken a bold stand for religious freedom. In a recent statement, titled “Our First, Most Cherished Liberty,” the bishops call for repeal of contraception coverage mandated by the Department of Health and Human Services. The clarified position sets up a dramatic confrontation with the Obama administration—and would, if the bishops prevail, help preserve the religious liberty of all Americans.
11:58 AM, Mar 19, 2012 • By DANIEL HALPER
The latest web ad from the Republican National Committee effectively attacks "Obama's War on Women."
6:20 PM, Mar 14, 2012 • By JEFFREY BELL
Despite reports of Republican devastation in the contraception debate, social conservative themes show surprising signs of hanging around.
2:42 PM, Feb 22, 2012 • By JEFFREY H. ANDERSON
The Obama administration’s recent decree — that, under Obamacare, Americans would no longer be free to offer or to choose new health plans that don’t include complimentary coverage of birth control, morning-after pills and the abortion drug ella — would likely lead a great many people to switch to much costlier birth control, according to a new piece published by Kaiser Health News.