In the wake of the Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby decision (and its granting of injunctive relief to Wheaton College), various faith-based organizations (FBOs) are stepping up to ask to be exempted from President Obama’s impending executive order barring federal contractors from discriminating against gays and lesbians. I don’t think they’ll get it.
That’s the news out of Rome after Pope Francis’ meeting with six victims of clergy sexual abuse, and it’s potentially very big news.
After last week’s discovery of the bodies of Eyal Yifrach, Gilad Shaar, and Naftali Fraenkel in the West bank, voices on the American Jewish right like Jonathan Tobin and Thane Rosenbaum attacked those who seemed to equate their murder with the killing of rock-throwing Palestinians by Israeli soldiers searching for the kidnapped Jewish teenagers. After the kidnapping and murder of 17-year-old Mohammed Khdair, such talk ceased.
The immediate import of the Supreme Court’s decision seems to be that the two companies in question, Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood, should receive the same accommodation afforded religious non-profits; namely, their female employees will have the contraceptive services objected to by the companies covered by the insurance company covering or administering their plans.
So argues New York Times conservative columnist Ross Douthat proposes and you know what? He’s right.
Earlier this month, I took exception to a Washington Post map purporting to show the second largest religious tradition (after Christianity) in each state of the Union. But maybe I was wrong about the Bahá’ís in South Carolina.
It’s understandable that the organized Jewish community would be angry and dismayed at last Friday’s narrow vote by the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (USA) to divest from three U.S. companies that allegedly aid in the repression of Palestinians. But the resolution is actually a blow to anti-Israel advocates.