Yes, it’s now an officially declared war, although you wouldn’t know this from the Obama-worshipping news networks.  On Jan. 20, Obama’s Department of Health and Human Services declared that Catholic schools, hospitals and other charitable agencies would be forced under Obamacare to finance sterilization, abortifacients and contraceptives in their insurance plans starting in 2013.  The only “concession” the administration made was to give the Church another year to implement that plan.  Cardinal-designate Timothy M. Dolan, archbishop of New York and president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, rightly commented, “In effect, the president is saying we have a year to figure out how to violate our consciences.”

Why are Catholics surprised?

The last Presidential election was a national disgrace, frankly.  There is plenty of “buyer’s remorse” by Catholics, among others, but it’s a bit too late now.  If they had done a minimal amount of research of Obama’s record rather than his rhetoric, they would have known exactly what Obama was going to do, because he had told us in his books!  And Blind Freddie’s deaf guide dog could have discerned that Obama was a self-righteous narcissist who would stop at nothing to implement his far-left ideas to “change” America.   For example, while Obama’s talk during his campaign was all about “unity”, his actual voting record showed him to be an abortion extremist and infanticide defender.  Yet 54 percent of the Catholic vote went to Obama.

And after his election, Rev. John Jenkins, president of the leading Catholic university Notre Dame, invited Obama to give the commencement address and award him an honorary degree.  Jenkins arrogantly refused to meet pro-lifers, refused to intercede when 88 were arrested for peaceful protests (unlike the Occupy Whatever goons), and the university fired the one administrator, Bill Kirk, who dared to protest.

It should have been a warning bell that Obama showed his true Christophobic colors by ordering all religious symbols to be covered (he would not have done that at a Mosque, that’s for sure).  But Jenkins and his fellow appeasers were happy, because Obama called for  “open hearts, open minds, fair-minded words” in the pursuit of “common ground” on the abortion issue.  Never mind that it’s absurd that there could be common ground between allowing child murder (as the 19th-century feminists denounced abortion) and opposing it.

But now that Obama has trampled on the conscience of the Catholic Church, Jenkins feigns indignation, “This is not the kind of ‘sensible’ approach the president had in mind when he spoke here.”  As Michael Gerson says, Obama plays his Catholic allies for fools.  Likewise Hitler played Jenkins’ ideological mentor Neville Chamberlain for a fool, and Chamberlain was just as shocked when Hitler invaded Poland.

Furthermore, Obama’s Army’s Office of the Chief of Chaplains forbade their chaplains from reading the hard-hitting letter from Archbishop Timothy Broglio, who leads the Roman Catholic Archdiocese for the Military Service.

Not just a Catholic issue

In this column, I have no intention of debating the Reformation.  After all, Obama won’t split the difference between Roman Catholicism and Protestantism—anything that contradicts the leftist agenda is fair game.  Obama’s despotic arrogance should show that no church is safe.

That Obama has not yet gone after the Protestants yet on the abortion issue is merely due to the deafening silence of much of Protestantism about the abortion holocaust, although right-to-life should be a Judeo-Christian issue not just a Catholic one.

Thus non-Catholic Christians should support the Catholics 100 percent on this.   Fortunately, over 60 Evangelical and Orthodox Jewish leaders have united in an open letter in protest to Obama’s latest tyrannical move.  Let’s hope that the voting public take heed, instead of voting on emotions like last time.

Religious freedom

Almost as important as the right to life issue is that of religious freedom, a foundational principle of this country.    So Protestant patriots should not become sidetracked by the contraception issue just because they usually don’t agree with Catholics on this.  They should instead be incensed that a President is trying to dictate religious conscience.

Indeed, not long before Obama’s diktat to the Catholics, his grossly politicized justice department went after the Hosanna-Tabor Evangelical Lutheran Church for firing a minister.  But the Supreme Court this time protected the church’s right to choose its own ministers.  In fact, it was a unanimous decision, showing that Obama’s extremist attack on the freedom of a church was too much even for his far-left judicial appointees.  Thomas Jefferson’s famous phrase “separation of Church and State”—not in the Constitution—was expressly about keeping the State out of the Church.

It’s hard to improve on Jeffrey Kuhner in a very important Washington Times article, End of the Constitution: Obamacare birth-control mandate would defeat the First Amendment:

“Is America sliding toward autocratic rule? This is the essential question of Barack Obama’s presidency. Mr. Obama vowed to ‘fundamentally transform’ the United States. Despite his incompetence and economic failure, the president is making good on his central promise: the destruction of our constitutional republic. He is trying—piece by painful piece—to reverse the legacy of the Founding Fathers. Conservatives have underestimated him at their peril. For Mr. Obama is not simply an inept, liberal president in the mold of Jimmy Carter. He is an ideological revolutionary who seeks to sweep away traditional America.”

Christians must vote out Obama!

If nothing else, this should mobilize all Christians to vote Obama out of office, regardless of who the Republican nominee is.  All the Republicans have their flaws, some more than others.   But none of them has declared open war on a major denomination.  Kuhner rightly says:

“Like many on the radical left, Mr. Obama is an anti-Christian, anti-religious bigot. His goal is to purge Christianity from civil society, to marginalize religion from the public square. He essentially told the church that Washington, not the Vatican, will dictate how it must run its affairs and administer its social services. He demanded that Catholics sacrifice their beliefs on the altar of secular liberalism. The state—with him at its helm—is the new pagan church.”

There is no place for “voting my conscience” if this means staying at home or voting third party (basically the same for all practical purposes).  OK, you may be disappointed that the Republican nominee has flaws.  News flash!  Everyone has flaws.  Indeed, our Founding Fathers wrote the Constitution precisely because they recognized that all people are flawed.  That’s why they wrote a system of checks and balances to prevent too much power accumulating in any one person or faction.   They reduced power by dividing it, hence the three branches of government to check each other, as well as systems like the Senate, Electoral College, and presidential to restrict the power of the mob.   Walter Williams has explained it well.

The Founders also realized that government was necessary to restrain evil.  It follows that we should vote to restrain as much evil as possible, given the choices actually available.  While some “vote my conscience” types spout trite aphorisms like “if there is a choice of two evils, choose neither”, a non-vote (or third-party vote, but I repeat myself) is actually permitting a greater evil to flourish.

My own conscience could not allow an anti-Christian despot and hater of this country another term.   As bad as he has been this term, imagine what he would be like next term.  After all, he would treat re-election as a mandate for more of the same, and he wouldn’t need to worry about re-election next time—how fortunate that we have the 22nd Amendment.

Conclusion

With apologies to the German anti-Nazi Pastor Martin Niemöller, “First, They Came for the Catholics, and I did nothing because I wasn’t a Catholic.  Then they came for the Lutherans, and I did nothing because I wasn’t a Lutheran.  Then they came for the other Christians and for observant Jews, but there was no one left to defend us, because so many had ‘voted their consciences’ and allowed another Obama term.”

We should recall the (probably apocryphal) saying by the great British conservative Edmund Burke (who supported American independence): “All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.”

Post-script

After writing the above, the news came that Obama “caved in” on this, and will no longer mandate that the Church covers procedures that violate their consciences.  But he is forcing insurance to cover it, and somebody will be paying for that—there is no free lunch.  As one headline said, WH chief of staff: Obamacare allows the president to tell a private company they have to offer a product, and offer it for free.

Patriots should not be fooled!  This is just the old dictator’s game: propose something twice as extreme as what he wants: government forcing insurance to cover the left’s favorite procedures that many Christians oppose.  Then gullible people will think he’s “caving” by meeting in the middle, which is what he was aiming for anyway: an unconstitutional power grab.  See Rush Limbaugh’s take on this, Obama Didn’t Cave on the HHS Mandate; He’s Making an Unprecedented Power Grab.  The main point remains: Obama’s contempt for Judeo-Christian freedoms and morality.