The White House’s Contraceptive Kulturkampf

Leroy Huizenga has written an interesting article about the culture war being waged by the Administration against our religious liberty.  He tells us:

Today the Catholic Church has found itself engaged in a new Kulturkampf, a cultural struggle initiated by State aggression against the libertas ecclesiae, the freedom of the Church to manage her own affairs so that her members might flourish in virtue and serve their fellow citizens freely. 

As the author notes, those resisting this state interference and aggression have framed the issue as one of religious liberty.  However, he recommends a different strategy.

The appeal to religious liberty is important, but it must be one prong of a two-pronged strategy. We must also explain why Christians historically have held contraception to be an intrinsic evil. Otherwise, we’ll be regarded at best as irrational eccentrics the state merely tolerates. In the long run, those simply tolerated tend not to fare well.

Huizenga thinks that it’s time to reengage on these issues in a significant way in the public square.

We should go on offense. While many have been using social media in the struggle for religious freedom, we should also defend the Church’s teaching itself. We should be taking out ads in the New York Times. We should be running television commercials. We should be holding fora on marriage, sex, and family issues not only in our parishes but also in literal public squares like Theology on Tap events in pubs.

Finally, he puts this battle in perspective.  

I would suggest that preserving the libertas ecclesiae requires moving beyond the scope of the limited conscience protections most are arguing for, as if we’re happy to beg the almighty savior State for the table scraps of an exemption. To do so would be to concede the State’s ultimate power over us.

We should not bemaneuvering for exemptions to unjust laws–we should get them overturned and cannot obey them.

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