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University lawsuit against mandate a learning experience

May 25, 2012
Salem News

Like most Roman Catholic institutions of higher learning, Franciscan University of Steubenville has a tradition of teaching values as well as facts. That makes it appropriate for the university to be taking a lead in pointing out why the new national health care law - "Obamacare," for President Barack Obama - is not acceptable for Americans.

Ours is a nation - or was, until the social engineers of the Obama administration took over - in which the freedom of the individual to make his own decisions about issues that concern only him is paramount. Obamacare wipes away that liberty and sets the stage for worse to come.

Franciscan officials revealed this week they are among more than 40 plaintiffs who are suing the government over one provision in the health care law. It requires many religious institutions, including colleges and universities that provide health insurance for employees and/or students to include specific coverages. Part of the mandate is for insurance for birth control services including drugs the Catholic Church views as abortion inducers. As Catholic leaders have pointed out, that forces the faithful to go against church teaching.

Last week Franciscan announced it will stop making health insurance available to some students, in part because of the birth control requirement. In addition, the university noted the new law is expected to double the cost of such policies.

On Monday, Franciscan announced it and others are going to court in an effort to have the birth control insurance mandate ruled unconstitutional.

It is, of course - but no more, in a way, than many of Obamacare's other provisions. The very foundation of the law is a requirement that all Americans obtain health insurance approved by the government. Those with incomes under certain limits could receive help paying for coverage.

Tens of millions of others will have to dig deeper into their own pockets, however, because of a law that eliminates Americans' right to choose what types of health insurance we desire and can afford. That infringes upon personal liberty in a very meaningful way - one the nation's founders sought to guard against.

The so-called "individual mandate" already is before the U.S. Supreme Court, which is expected to issue a ruling later this summer. If it decides against Obamacare, the Franciscan lawsuit may be moot.



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