Ken Connor

For people of faith in America, the Obama administration's birth control mandate represents an unprecedented assault on religious conscience. It seems that the President and his surrogates have little appreciation for the role that faith plays in the lives of many Americans, and even less respect for the Constitution's protection of religious liberty. As if to confirm this impression, the U.S. Justice Department is doubling down on the Administration's anti-faith stance with a lawsuit against a German family seeking religious asylum in the United States. According to our esteemed Attorney General, the right to choose the best education for your child is not a fundamental individual liberty. When it comes to the education of our children, the government – not the parents – is the final authority.

Joe Carter writes about the plight of the Romeike family for the Action Institute's "Power Blog":

"The Romeikes had withdrawn their children from German public schools in 2006, after becoming concerned that the educational material employed by the school was undermining the tenets of their Christian faith. After accruing the equivalent of $10,000 worth of fines and the forcible removal of their children from the home, they chose to flee their homeland and seek asylum in the United States. They believed our government was more respectful of religious liberties.

They soon discovered that was not the case.

On January 26, 2010, a federal immigration judge granted the Romeikes political asylum, ruling they had a reasonable fear of persecution for their beliefs if they returned to their homeland. The judge also denounced the German policy, saying it was, "utterly repellent to everything we believe as Americans." However, President Obama's Justice Department disagreed. They argued that the family should be denied asylum based on their contention that government may legitimately use its authority to force parents to send their kids to government-sanctioned schools."

Why should we be surprised? Of course the President doesn't trust the parents of America to make decisions regarding their children's education. According to his cradle-to-grave, nanny state philosophy, how could we the sheeple be expected to know anything about our children's educational needs? And how dare we expect that our personal values and beliefs play any role in the equation?

Ken Connor

Ken Connor is Chairman of the Center for a Just Society in Washington, DC.