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Wednesday, August 21, 2013

USA Today's Gannett Company is not the only for-profit with First Amendment freedoms


USA Today' editorial, "Contraception mandate applies to business," condescendingly casts conscientious objectors as foot-stomping outliers who "demand exemptions" to the Obama administration's mandate to supply the "morning-after pill, which they say cause the equivalent of abortions."
"They say" implies imagined evidence, yet the FDA has pronounced that Plan B--the morning-after pill--can end the life of a developing human embryo by "inhibiting implantation." The drug label concedes it may "prevent attachment" to the womb of an oocyte--the early developmental stage of an already genetically complete human being. So those who decline to participate in the distribution of such potentially life-ending pills do so on the basis of a conscience informed by both moral principle and science.
The issue is not, as the editorial suggests, the arguable promise or peril of contraception, but rather whether providing already universally accessible drugs justifies the federal government compelling virtually every conscientious objector outside a church sanctuary to bow to the government's edict.
The First Amendment, which protects our freedom of speech and free exercise of religion from government suppression, applies not only to news corporations such as the Gannett Company, Inc. These inalienable rights apply also to those who run corporations by ethical principles and to the millions of other Americans who refuse to surrender their free speech and faith rights to a conscience-trampling government.

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