Michelle Obama and the HHS mandate

Today, First lady Michelle Obama – whose husband defends higher taxes, gay marriage and universal healthcare on Biblical grounds – spoke to members of the African Methodist Episcopal Church at a conference in Nashville, Tennessee. The following is just a part of what she said:

Our faith journey isn’t just about showing up on Sunday for a good sermon and good music and a good meal. It’s about what we do Monday through Saturday as well, especially in those quiet moments, when the spotlight’s not on us, and we’re making those daily choices about how to live our lives.

We see that in the life of Jesus Christ. Jesus didn’t limit his ministry to the four walls of the church. He was out there fighting injustice and speaking truth to power every single day. He was out there spreading a message of grace and redemption to the least, the last, and the lost. And our charge is to find Him everywhere, every day by how we live our lives.

Obama added that “anyone who says that church is no place to talk about these issues, you tell them there is no place better. Because ultimately, these are not just political issues — they are moral issues.”

Ed Morrissey over at HotAir noticed right away that this is the exact same argument the Catholic Church is making when it comes to the HHS mandate.

In fact, the first lady’s statement not only runs counter to Princeton Professor Peter Singer’s absurd claim that “Catholicism does not oblige its adherents to run hospitals and universities,” it undercuts the president’s argument that “freedom of religion” is the equivalent of “freedom of worship.”

I’ve been arguing for a while now that progressives are just a guilty as conservatives for reading their faith into public policy, even though Democrats constantly rail against Republicans who reference their religion in the public square. I hope the lack of criticism from the left as well as the media helps people see how empty and hypocritical those claims actually are.

I mean, can you imagine how the media would have reacted had Mrs. Obama been a conservative Christian?

Stephen Kokx is an adjunct professor of political science and featured columnist at RenewAmerica.com. Follow him on twitter @StephenKokx



  • Iowa Catholic

    Your argument, along with Ed Morissey, is a red herring. She is saying it is our moral duty to help the less fortunate but we are hypocrites. We don’t give enough money, time or resources to our own parishes let alone charities. As for the Fortnight campaign, it fell flat as a pancake around here. Do you think Jesus would support universal healthcare or our broken system where only $.36 of every dollar PAID for health care came from employer funded insurance.

  • Kurt

    it undercuts the president’s argument that “freedom of religion” is the equivalent of “freedom of worship.”

    Let’s drop this meme. Obama has not made an argument for this equivalency, even if policies might suggest it. Thoughtfully, these are different propositions. In common speech, they are often used interchangability, as Ronald Reagan, Norman Rockwell and Cardinal Spellman have done.

    If someone gives a detailed defense of why they think these concepts are equivalent, then let’s respond. If someone just uses the phrase, let’s not send in the dogs.

  • whart

    Yikes, the first lady might get rounded up and sent to a re-education camp!

  • faith & reason

    Isn’t there one liberal in this nation that is able to logically separate the Bishops’ lawsuit from reproductive ideology?

    Catholic Grandma, it seems to me, you have confused our church with politics and government. The fact that you were applauded in your church for supporting the denial of the 1st amendment to catholic & all faith-based institutions is tragic and sad. Not just for the church but for America.
    1) Do you agree with president obama’s interpretation of freedom of religion as merely freedom to worship? If you do not, your spreading of your illogical and misguided thinking is reprehensible. If you do agree, God help this nation since our foundation, the 1st amendment, is not understood and will be taken away by an agenda-driven, ignorant populace.
    2) God help our church in America, since you are Catholic and obviously disagree with the “Church of Life” and think each Catholic in the world has a ‘voice’ in church teachings? There is probably not one person in the world that agrees with all the theology of our church. Probably not even Pope Benedict himself! Jesus wanted His church to be one. In His Euchristic prayer: ‘Father, may they be one.” Catholic Christians alone have been able to accomplish this and in our unity have, as a church, ALONE, been completing His mission here on earth in a world-wide way. To spread the Good News and to feed, clothe and shelter His little ones. Christian churches, schools, hospitals, shelters, social work and so much more that I don’t even know about, ALL over the world, probably in the majority of all the cities, towns, villages, nations because of our Catholic unity. Now you are willing to forego this because of birth prevention, sterilization, abortion and homosexuality? Please explain to me how any of these are life giving and worthy of throwing away 2000 years of ministry?

    You are supporting an atrocity because of ELECTIVE reproductive choices and a very small minority of sexual reltionships. Please relax, you don’t have to stand up for these things in this country. The media and money is doing that beautifully! YOUR church, YOUR faith needs you and all of us to stand in unity with the Bishops to protect a far larger threat. The mission of Catholic Christians and ALL people of faith in this nation.

    Dog eat Dog: nothing to say except so sorry for whatever occurred in your life to produce such an angry bitter comment.

    Honestly, neither of these comments nor my reply have anything to do with the above article???!!! More illogic! Have not seen this reported in any mainstream media. If this were Sarah Palin stupidly reinforcing an argument against her party, we would have seen it last night on SNL. Was there a skit last night? I didn’t watch.



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