* Setting aside the debate over the actual bill for a moment, do you think this open letter to Catholics from Cardinal George on Archdiocese of Chicago letterhead is appropriate? Please read the whole thing by clicking here, but I’ll give you a few excerpts…
Before the Illinois General Assembly there is a proposal (HB 2354, the “Reproductive Health and Access Act”) that would remove the right to conscientious objection to abortion and related procedures for all health care workers. […]
The enemies of human life and religious freedom in Illinois are well funded. Pressure on legislators is great and is increasing. I ask you to contact your Representative this week to express your dismay that the Illinois legislature, elected democratically, would debate a bill that removes freedom of conscientious decision-making for health care workers as a condition of their employment. If, as we are told, the State should not come between a doctor and a mother, then surely all can agree that the State should not come between a health care worker and God. […]
This proposed law will rend the already fragile garment of our civic unity and further alienate many from our government. Catholics and all people of good will should work to ensure its defeat. I also ask you to thank those legislators who are courageously opposing HB 2354 and to pray for those who are supporting it. To contact your legislator, please go to www.ilga.gov, or call 312-368-1066. Thank you and God bless you.
Francis Cardinal George, OMI
Archbishop of Chicago
Just to be clear, a proposed, but as yet unfiled amendment to the bill will significantly change the conscience clause language that the Cardinal discusses.
As a non-Catholic, I’m usually reticent to post my own thoughts on these sorts of things (generally out of a very legit fear of being labled anti-Catholic), but I thought maybe you’d like to discuss this letter yourself.
As always, decorum rules will be enforced. Try to keep your tempers and preconceived notions in your head, not in your typing fingers.