If anything has been made clear in the ongoing Internal Revenue Service scandal, it’s that this is bigger than the work of one or two partisans. Rather, it is indicative of a mindset within agencies which says, "We know what's best for you."
And what this means is that your conscience and mine, and your religious convictions and mine, and your convictions about right and wrong and mine, are all trumped by a bureaucracy that knows better than we do, or at least acts like it does. Seems they think they are our speech and belief police.
And these events aren’t isolated. We’ve seen this same dangerous tendency within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).
Consider the Newland family in Denver. They are not agitators nor are they disrespectful. They are not extremists looking for a chance to flex their faith in the face of people who don’t agree with them. They are people who were minding their own business -- in more ways than one -- when the legal attacks hit.
The Newlands own and operate a very successful heating and air conditioning business, Hercules Industries. It is the kind of business that made America great -- one that’s invested deeply in its employees and community.
Late last summer, the city of Denver was set to issue a proclamation honoring the Newlands for their exemplary contributions to the community. The city wanted to highlight their work toward historic preservation, charitable assistance for those affected by the summer wildfires, and especially their outstanding benefits and support for their employees.
However, this all changed when the Newlands filed a successful lawsuit against the Obama administration. The suit prevented the government from forcing the family to comply with the Obamacare contraceptive mandate, which requires nearly every American business to facilitate access to drugs and treatments with which they disagree regardless of the owners’ faith and conscience, through their health insurance plans.
Led by their faith, the Newlands understand that every life is sacred at every stage of development. They understand that certain of the “drugs” covered by the mandate will destroy innocent human life. Therefore, they oppose funding those drugs.
The fines the Newlands would have faced for simply not complying would have crippled their business. So they contacted Alliance Defending Freedom, and we sued. What resulted was the first national victory against ObamaCare -- a victory in which a federal judge halted the mandate, pending the outcome of that lawsuit.
Alan Sears, a former federal prosecutor in the Reagan Administration, is president and CEO of the Alliance Defending Freedom, a legal alliance employing a unique combination of strategy, training, funding, and litigation to protect and preserve religious liberty, the sanctity of life, marriage, and the family.