Dear Friends of Life:
This month we are turning our attention to a national issue. We are all aware of the recent healthcare mandate that would force employers to provide insurance coverage for services that are contrary to their moral or religious beliefs. A law has been introduced ... the Respect for Rights of Conscience Act (S.1467)... that will nullify this horrible regulation by allowing health plans to decline such coverage. The issue goes beyond healthcare, since it basically deals with the ability of the US government to force citizens to act against their free will. Our letter this month will therefore be directed to the US Senators representing the state of New Jersey, asking them to support S.1467.
EXPLANATION PARAGRAPH (Five Minutes For Life and other groups)
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has begun to spell-out rules for implementing provisions in the federal health care plan, one of which would force religion-based organizations to provide insurance that pays for services that are not part of their requested coverage. Media stories have painted the controversy over the HHS mandate as a debate about contraception, but closer examination shows that providing abortion would be included in the "covered services." In fact, on March 14, 2012, HHS released a 644 page regulation document that demonstrates how abortion will be covered by the Obama Plan. The new rule, which goes into effect in January 2014, requires that every state must establish an "exchange," to create the government-operated insurance markets. These plans will offer federal subsidies based on income (e.g. families of four earning less than $92,000). The subsidies can be used to purchase plans that cover all abortions. Only plans that join the "exchange" will be eligible to sign-up federally subsidized participants. In other words, under the HHS mandate, not only will church organizations be forced to act against their conscience, but entire states would be forced to indirectly support abortions, whether they want to or not. It is clear that even if the Obama Plan is struck down by the Supreme Court, there will be continued efforts to subsidize abortion. We cannot permit the focus to be about contraception or a "war against women," because this debate is about whether the federal government can deprive citizens of their rights.
Our letters should be directed to Senators Menendez and Lautenberg, asking them to support the Respect for Rights of Conscience Act, S.1467.
For our new members, on the next page we provide the address for this month’s mailing, and we list some suggested phrases that can be used in a letter, for those who want such assistance. You may use our suggestions, or use your own words. Post cards and hand-written letters are good ...just keep them short and courteous.
Please remember, we depend entirely on your help and financial support, since there are no membership dues or fees. All of our work is done by volunteers. Our funds … your donations … are used for printing and mailing. We are trying to find ways of reducing costs. Our current financial situation is such that we have received just enough for this mailing, then we are again out of funds. Any donation, no matter how small, is important. Due to work load on volunteers we cannot send acknowledgement for gifts less than $100, unless requested.
Adolph Schimpf, Ph.D.