Voices from Russia

Thursday, 24 March 2016

24 March 2016. No Religious Organisation Has the Right to Ram Its Religious Beliefs Down Another’s Throat with the State’s Connivance

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I saw this comment on RT on a story about a bunch of nuns seeking exemption from offering contraceptive coverage for their secular employees:

If every fanatic with a lawyer can bring the state to a halt, you have no state.

I quite agree. If these nuns employ secular employees, they have no right to dictate their private behaviour or their religious practise, let alone to do so with the state’s connivance. Modern states are secular in character… that is, they have no “Church by Law Established”, therefore, the state is neutral in religious matters. The state can allow no religious body or person to evade laws binding on all citizens by citing “religious belief”. For instance, Quakers must pay income tax, even though much of that money goes for war purposes, which is against deeply held Quaker beliefs. The same is true of other Traditional Peace Churches. These bodies have shouldered their burden as conscientious citizens… in return, the state does its best to accommodate their pacifist tenets. During times of conscription, the state has either allowed men of these groups to serve in noncombatant roles (mostly as medical orderlies, where many won deserved recognition for bravery at the front) or to carry out essential civilian duties (such as firefighters in national forests or as assistants in civilian hospitals). These people are worthy of the respect of all decent people… they shoulder their common civic burden and shirk nothing onerous and hard. These nuns are punks. “We want a religious exemption! We won’t offer contraceptive services to our employees”. This coverage is state-mandated… that ends the discussion. If the Peace Churches can accommodate the military needs of the state, these nuns can accommodate the state’s mandate that they offer full healthcare coverage to their employees. Actually, as a socialist, I think that we need a state-funded single-payer system (most hospitals and doctors prefer such a system over the present chaotic non-system)… since the nuns wouldn’t be offering healthcare coverage, it wouldn’t “burden” their conscience. The sooner that we have single-payer, like the rest of the civilised world, the better off we all shall be.

BMD

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Wednesday, 2 July 2014

2 July 2014. Some Takes on the Hobby Lobby Brouhaha

01 condom and the pill

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A friend wrote this:

This country has truly gone MAD. We have gone down the rabbit hole, through the looking-glass. The solution is get health insurance OUT of employers’ hands… INDIVIDUAL Healthcare coverage. YOU decide what coverage you want, it has nothing to do with your employer, except to arrange for payroll deductions… like they do with parking permits, bus passes, etc. No “in network”, “out of network”, etc. Those who want coverage for contraception, abortion, other reproductive care, etc., could arrange for it. Your employer would have NO role/decision in what you select. It’s YOUR body, YOUR decision.

The Forward wrote this (the full article is here):

Earlier this month, Congressman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) cornered Mat Staver of the US Liberty Council into admitting that a photographer could object to photographing a Jewish wedding on “religious liberty” grounds. In May, Houston TX Pastor Betty Riggle admitted under questioning by City Councilwoman Ellen Cohen that stores could turn away Jews on religious reasons as well. Two separate incidents… both instigated by Jewish leaders at legislative hearings… but with the same result. The “slippery slope” of Hobby Lobby includes discrimination against Jews. Both of these processes were Talmudic in tone. In each case, the conservative Christian activist protested that she or he wasn’t talking about Jews… in each case, the Jewish interlocutor insisted that they could equally apply the logic applied to gays and women to Jews, could they not? Finally, the conservative activists caved. In the words of the aptly named Pastor Riggle, “No. No, I’m not saying… yes, I’m saying that, but that isn’t the issue that we’re talking about”.

In Hobby Lobby, the court decided that closely held corporations are “persons” for the purposes of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. This means that corporations, like human beings, may have religious beliefs that the government must respect. To many of us, this seems patently absurd. As a lower court wrote, corporations “do not pray, worship, observe sacraments, or take other religiously motivated actions”. Yet, Justice Alito proceeded along highly Talmudic… even Pharisaic… lines. He noted that corporations are “persons” in other laws, like the Dictionary Act. He called a corporation “simply a form of organisation used by human beings to achieve desired ends”. He observed that religious non-profit organisations are already granted religious exemptions… so, why not for-profit businesses?

I can see where this is going. Hobby Lobby’s owners are extremist “Evangelicals”… the next thing is that they’ll demand an abstinence declaration from their employees based on “religious liberty”. The “Evangelicals” are in no way Traditional Christians, they have little (if anything) in common with us, and this case points that up. Look at what the Church teaches… V A Chaplin reiterated it here… and look at what the Hobby Lobby pukes demand. There’s nothing that we hold in common with these godless and god-denying sectarians (they deny the sacraments, the liturgy, the whole canon of Holy Scripture, the priesthood, and Tserkovnost, after all). This legal case is just another illustration of that. Single-payer is the way to go, as Vermont showed with Dr Dynasaur. All the parents in Vermont love it. These Affluent Effluent greedsters simply wish to treat their employees like marionettes, and we shouldn’t allow them to do that. Their so-called “Religious Liberty” is a licence for religious persecution… I’ll say that loud n’ proud. I’m on the other side of the barricades from the theomachistic “Evangelicals” and I’m handin’ out the AKs, RPGs, flamethrowers, coshes, and axe handles out back… hey, we lefties know how to use ‘em too. Have a care… there be evil people out there… and most of ‘em dress up in “religious vesture”… the ones with the biggest smiles are the biggest assholes. Keep your wits about you…

BMD

Saturday, 6 October 2012

6 October 2012. A Point to Ponder. Just What IS “Pro-Life?”

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Let’s not take forever on this. “Pro-Life” is so much more than anti-abortion… it’s being against the death penalty for non-state crimes (hey, that was Tsar Aleksandr‘s stance, and he was no weak sister)… it’s being critical of promiscuous warmongering… it’s being for economic justice in the marketplace for workers and consumers. The late John Cardinal O’Connor called it the “seamless garment“. He was right… if you advocate war in foreign parts on flimsy pretexts… if you advocate the death penalty for crimes that aren’t against the state or the society as a whole (that is, Timothy McVeigh and the Minsk Metro bombers were examples of legit capital punishment)… if you advocate anarchic libertarian nihilism (“economic freedom” and “shrinking the state”)… if you defend a tax system that cheats the working class to enrich the Wet Willies… you’re NOT Pro-Life… not at all.

Let’s put it plainly… if you support the Republican Party, you’re not Pro-Life… their platform is antipodes removed from Christianity and justice. That’s the way it is…

BMD

Study Suggests that the Affordable Care Act Would Slash American Abortion Rate

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According to a new study, providing birth control to women free of charge, a measure contained in new healthcare legislation signed by US President Barack Obama, would “significantly” reduce unintended teen pregnancies and abortion rates in the USA. On Thursday, Dr James Breeden, president of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, said after the study was published, “It’s just an amazing improvement. I’d think if you were against abortions, you’d be 100 percent for contraception access”.

The study, conducted by the Washington University School of Medicine in St Louis and the pro-choice organisation Planned Parenthood, showed “a clinically and statistically significant reduction in abortion rates, repeat abortions, and teenage birth rates” among subjects who received free contraception. The study was conducted in the St Louis area over a course of four years and comprised 9,256 women and teens between the ages of 14 and 45. It simulated the free contraceptive mandate under Obama’s controversial Affordable Care Act, which critics referred to “Obamacare”. All of the subjects in the study, published in the journal Obstetrics & Gynecology, were uninsured low-income women or those otherwise considered to be at risk for unintended pregnancy. The researchers said that when cost wasn’t an issue, the women chose the most effective and permanent methods of contraception including implants, that usually cost several hundred dollars. This resulted in significantly less unintended pregnancies and abortions compared to the national average.

The researchers said, “We observed a significant reduction in the percentage of abortions that were repeat abortions in the St Louis region compared with Kansas City and non-metropolitan Missouri”, adding that overall abortion rates amongst the study group were less than half the regional and national averages. The study showed 6.3 births per 1,000 teens who received free contraception, compared to a national teen average in 2010 of 34 births. It also showed there were 7.5 abortions per 1,000 women in the study versus a national rate of 20 abortions per 1,000 women. The findings came two months after the Affordable Care Act began requiring private insurance companies to provide free contraception. The law stipulates that any insurance contract starting on or after 1 August must offer free access to birth control along with seven other women’s health services, including pap smears. Obama’s opponent, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romneyvowed to repeal the healthcare law if he’s elected.

6 October 2012

Sasha Horne

RIA-Novosti

http://en.rian.ru/world/20121006/176435384.html

Editor’s Note:

There’s something called “zeal without knowledge”. The Church condemns it; always has, always will. Foxy ol’ Bishop Mensurius of Carthage showed us what this meant back in the day… he decreed that anyone who was a “voluntary martyr” was no saint. That is, if you died in the persecution because the pagan authorities dragged you off, you were a saint. If you goaded the authorities and forced them to kill you, you weren’t a saint, you were just a misguided putz.

We have Orthodox loudmouths such as Reardon, Josiah Trenham, Fathausen, and their konvertsy claque, who shout that contraception’s a sin. That’s bullshit, full stop. Fr Vsevolod Chaplin said that contraception’s licit via oikonomia. That ends the discussion, because when Fr Vsevolod talks, he’s usually talking for HH. We don’t agree with the papists on this.

The real Church agrees with the Affordable Care Act (HH is FOR state-provided healthcare for all); it doesn’t agree with the Republicans who want to repeal it. The real Church blesses economic justice and it denounces the Free Market as a fraud, where only the workers suffer. Don’t be fooled by the loud konvertsy ignoramuses on the internet. They don’t inform themselves of the doings of the real Church; everything that they spout is nothing but idiosyncratic ungrounded babbling. As for me, I prefer to find out what real leaders like HH say… that’s much safer. After all, whom would you trust? Some jumped-up semi-converted Episkie/Evangelical frauds or the real leaders of the Orthosphere? For me, there’s no contest…

Never forget, anti-abortion does NOT equal pro-life!

BMD

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