Saint Mary Magdalene by Ermes Dovico
THE 'DEVOUT' PRESIDENT

US bishops versus Biden's rainbow measures

The US Conference of Catholic Bishops has reacted strongly to Biden’s regulation limiting subsidies for failure to conform to transgender ideology in social and charitable services. It puts religious freedom at risk.

Religious Freedom 14_09_2023 Italiano

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) has lodged a strong and formal protest with the Biden administration recently because it wants to limit Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) grants to those who do not accept or implement transgender ideology in their charities and services. Earlier this summer, in July, HHS had published a proposed regulation (NPRM) that, according to the department, would aim to ”affirm civil rights and equal opportunity for people nationwide in HHS funded programs and services”.

The new policy, in particular, seeks to protect “LGBTQI+ people from discrimination in important health and human services programs by clarifying and reaffirming the prohibition on discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity”, especially for recipients of public subsidies. The Department of Health and Human Services in announcing the proposal had stated that it would allow people to comment on it and post criticisms or improvements to it for 60 days following the announcement, a period that ended on September 11.

The HHS has so far neither commented on the criticism it has received nor wished to anticipate its willingness to make corrections or changes to the new administrative regulation before it is finally approved and enters into force. Perhaps, it is also for these reasons and in order for the concerns expressed publicly to be taken into account, that writing on behalf of the USCCB, William J. Quinn, General Counsel for legal affairs of the Bishops Conference, denounced the opposition to the new rules that would oblige Catholic social and charitable services to "endorse a view of human embodiment and sexual difference contrary to Catholic teaching".

The new regulations proposed by the Biden Administration, by "placing unconstitutional conditions on participation in government programs, threatens our capacity to carry out this service. In the end, those hurt the most will be those whom we serve: victims of domestic violence, refugees and newcomers, children, the homeless, the sick, and the poor”.

The letter goes on to highlight how “Any charity that has separate men’s and women’s bathrooms or changing areas could be required to allow men to use the women’s facility and vice versa; any charity may be required to address an employee or beneficiary by pronouns that do not correspond with his or her biological sex”. Furthermore, the letter points out that there are many Catholic charities that provide emergency shelters for victims of domestic violence, some of which are facilities only for women and children who have been abused by their partners or parents.

 

The Biden administration's new measure even in these cases would “arguably mandate them to house biological men who identify as women in single-sex facilities”. These assumptions are by no means sudden, given the fierce controversy that has involved both the author J.K. Rowling and some Scottish MPs against the decision to house in Edinburgh, in shelters for women who have suffered violence, not only men but also notorious and multiple convicted rapists who have declared themselves transgender women.  Not without irony and obvious common sense, the letter sent from the offices of the American Bishops' Conference reminds the Biden Administration of some basic biological facts, elements of objective and natural reality even before interpretations of faith: "Just as every human person necessarily has a body, so also human bodies, like those of other mammals, are sexually differentiated as male or female”.

Finally, it should be noted that although the Administration's proposal pays lip service to religious liberty and conscience exemptions, in reality the new rules are designed to foster "arbitrary and capricious applications of religious liberty protections" and will place in the hands of the Biden Administration and the courts the decision to cancel all possible funding for the Catholic Church's social and educational charities throughout the United States of America. "We urge HHS to reconsider the NPRM's reinterpretation of these sex discrimination provisions to include SOGI [sexual orientation and gender identity] requirements", the letter concludes, "and to implement a religious exemption that properly respects the statutory and constitutional rights of religious associations”.

The Catholic Church's concerns are more than well-founded, e.g. the proposal passed in California in recent days instructs judges, in child custody cases, to consider whether a parent has promoted a child's ‘gender transition’, otherwise the parent loses his or her parental rights forever. If the Dems take over children and abolish the parents’ role, do you think the 'devout Catholic' Biden and his 'clique', won’t be willing to assault the works of the Catholic Church to bend it to the yoke, restrict its freedom, and water down its doctrine?

With respect, does the Pope, who in recent days has accused the majority of American bishops of being "stuck in the past" because allegedly they have replaced faith with ideology, have nothing to say in the face of this danger of grave abuse by the Biden-led State against the Church?



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