For those of you who will lower yourself to listen to a man, never mind a bishop, speak on the HHS mandate, Bishop William Lori of Bridgeport, Connecticut, offered a useful political parable this morning about a fictional law that requires all businesses to serve pork, including kosher delis.
“But pork is good for you.”
“So many Jews eat pork, and those who don’t should just get with the times.”
“Those Orthodox are just trying to impose their beliefs on everyone else.”
These were the responses to Orthodox Jews who expressed outrage about the hypothetical law.
Mercifully, in Bishop Lori’s parable, there was a recognition that “it is absurd for someone to come into a kosher deli and demand a ham sandwich,” “it is beyond absurd for that private demand to be backed with the coercive power of the state,” and “it is downright surreal to apply this coercive power when the customer can get the same sandwich cheaply, or even free, just a few doors down.”
“The question before the United States government — right now — is whether the story of our own Church institutions that serve the public, and that are threatened by the HHS mandate, will end happily too,” Lori told the oversight committee. “Will our nation continue to be one committed to religious liberty and diversity? We urge, in the strongest possible terms, that the answer must be yes.”