John Stonestreet and Roberto Rivera: The Left Blames the Manhattan Declaration for ‘Grotesque’ Religious Freedom

In early May, HHS announced new rules to ensure that “healthcare professionals will not feel compelled to leave the practice of medicine because they decline to participate in actions that violate their conscience such as abortion, sterilization, or assisted suicide.”

Not surprisingly, the new rule was immediately challenged in federal court by groups alleging, among other things, that the new rule “advances specific religious beliefs in violation of the First Amendment; violates patients’ rights to privacy, liberty and equal dignity as guaranteed by the Fifth Amendment; and chills patients’ speech and expression in violation of the First Amendment, all to the detriment of patients’ health and well-being.”

Other left-wing websites such as Salon also joined the chorus of outrage. “Progressives fight back against Religious Right’s grotesque ‘religious freedom’ power play,” one of the headlines proclaimed.

In addition to the strange use of the word “grotesque,” the headline put religious freedom in scare quotes, and the article went on to claim that the new rule has “nothing to do with the genuine freedom to adhere to one’s religious beliefs.”

No, instead, religious freedom is a “power play” to invent what they call “an imaginary right to discriminate.” I think a better use of the word “imaginary” would be repeated references to the Handmaid’s Tale we’ve all been forced to endure over the last two years.

Salon’s rhetoric is nothing new. But I was surprised by Salon’s claim that our nation’s new “theocratic direction,” as they put it, has its origin in, of all things, the Manhattan Declaration!

Theocratic? To paraphrase “The Princess Bride,” people keep using that word, but it does not mean what they think it means. A theocracy is “a form of government in which God or a deity is recognized as the supreme civil ruler,” and “His laws [are] interpreted by the ecclesiastical authorities.”

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SOURCE: Christian Post, John Stonestreet and Roberto Rivera