The fact that Tyndale House Publishers, based in Carol Stream, IL has needed to take a stand in court against ObamaCare’s abortion pill mandate should itself shock most Americans. The publisher simply believes that devout Christians in America are exercising religion when they publish the Bible and give the proceeds to religious charity. But even this idea is now disputed.
The president’s agencies have written rules that render evangelistic publishing of the Bible to be, well, not really religious. To the people who drafted the ObamaCare rule, and its defenders, religion is little more than a target of derision and marginalization.
Tyndale House is a Bible publisher, but the administration believes it shouldn’t qualify for an exemption because it initially earns a profit on its published materials…before directing 97 percent of that profit to non-profit religious charities and causes.
Some advocates for the abortion pill mandate erroneously contend that Tyndale House, instead of the Obama administration, wants the government to pick and choose what is and isn’t truly “religious,” and even to interpret what biblical authors really meant.
This is the opposite of the truth. In America, the burden of proof to violate religious freedom is not on citizens, but on the government. The government needs to stay out of religious gerrymandering and respect free exercise of religion, period.
In the First Amendment, the Founders took for granted that religion exists, and far from ridiculing it, they set up a barrier to protect it. President Bill Clinton and a broad bipartisan majority followed suit when they passed the Religious Freedom Restoration Act in 1993.
The administration and Tyndale House’s critics are the ones asking for government to decide what the Bible means. The Obama administration has drawn a tiny circle around what it calls “religious employers,” and has left most religious Americans out in the cold. But the government shouldn’t be drawing that line in the first place.
Secularists seem to believe that since courts shouldn’t decide what the Bible means, Christians aren’t allowed to decide either. Instead, the administration forces believers to follow the theological decisions of President Obama and Planned Parenthood.
Nothing could be further from America’s tradition of religious freedom. Bible publishers should be free to do business according to the book that they publish.
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