I think we can all agree that America, though much freer than many countries, no longer provides full freedom for people of faith. Many of us are simply not able to live our religion anymore without penalty. Of course, honoring God is worth the cost, but how much farther back will the boundaries be pushed? Where will the removal of religious freedom in our great nation, founded precisely to be a safe haven for people of all faiths, stop?
Health care providers are at the heart of this battle. Doctors, nurses, and other health care professionals can be pressured to perform abortions by superiors, and some have even been threatened with job loss if they refused. The case of Cathy DeCarlo, the Roman Catholic nurse in New York who was forced to participate in an abortion, is one example among many.
The baby’s (and the mother’s) side of this story is heartbreaking.
The nurse’s side is, too. You mean, if I’m that pro-life, Catholic nurse, you’re gonna force me to help you kill a baby?
The term for that is psychological torture. It’s the worst kind of abuse.
I can speak to this topic. One thing I learned from living in an abusive marriage (and from listening to other victims’ stories since then) was that, when someone has a horrible plan that causes harm to others, they don’t just jump in with both feet. They move step by step, a little at a time, towards their goal, so the victim thinks, “Oh, this is just a little worse. I can live with this. But if ______ happens, I’m outta’ here!”
The problem is that it does get worse. That’s the nature of abuse. But the changes happen so gradually that the victim is able to accept each small step, until eventually all the boundaries the victim once had have been obliterated.
That’s what’s happening to people of faith in America now, and it’s been moving in this direction for a long time. We think, “Yeah, this is bad…but as long as it doesn’t go any further, it will be OK.”
It’s not OK, though…because each time we give ground—each time we accept that small step down the hill, we’re signaling to the other side that, after this step, they can take the next one.
And now, 43 years after Roe V. Wade, the boundaries have been pushed so far back that conscientious objectors are no longer free to object.
So—what do we do? Each of us can do something that is totally in line with our faith and very, very effective.
Every single Christian alive today has a voice, a sphere of influence, and a vocation in this world. Those things give us each our means to take a stand. We each have to say, “I stand for religious freedom.”
Today, we have a perfect opportunity to combine our voices into one united call for freedom by contacting our senators and representatives about the Conscience Protection Act of 2016. The USCCB is spearheading an effort to get this bill passed. It would protect the conscience rights of health care providers and other health care professionals who refused to be involved in, or provide coverage for, abortions. You can find more information and contact your congressmen through Human Life Action’s landing page here.
There’s a key that contributes to an oppressor’s ability to take the next step, every time. That key is silence; when the victim or an advocate speaks out, it’s often the first step toward stopping the downward slide. When it comes to the rights of conscientious objectors, future generations need every single one of us to speak up—here and now, today. Please go to www.humanlifeactioncenter.org and take a stand.