As vaccine mandates multiply, so do requests for religious exemptions

The Buffalo News

Jay Tokasz

A couple dozen people asked the Buffalo Diocese for letters supporting a religious exemption from a Covid-19 vaccination.

The University at Buffalo and other area colleges and universities granted several hundred exemptions from their mandatory vaccine policy for students, mostly for faith reasons.

A national religious liberty organization is threatening to sue New York State over a vaccine mandate for health care workers that doesn’t include a religious exemption. . . . continue reading

Covid vaccination and the common good


Patrick Parkinson

Covid vaccination and the common good

A couple of decades ago, there were hardly any anti-vaxxers in Australia. Those who held the belief that it was wrong to prevent illness by receiving a vaccine typically rejected other aspects of modern life and government regulation as well.

The anti-vaxxer movement gathered pace with the publication of an article in a medical journal, since retracted and thoroughly discredited, that purported to make a link between vaccination and autism.

Since then the movement has become widespread. Now, vaccination against Covid has emerged as a religious issue – at least in some theologically conservative circles. . . continue reading

HHS Denies Conscience Freedom for Physicians

National Review

Matt Bowman

We’ve all read about how President Biden recently ordered his Health and Human Services Department to issue a national eviction-moratorium mandate, even though “the bulk of the constitutional scholarship says that it’s not likely to pass constitutional muster.” And indeed, the Supreme Court has just struck it down.

What can you do when the president brazenly admits that he is trampling on constitutionally protected freedoms?

But the eviction moratorium is not the only mandate from this president that far exceeds his authority. It’s not even the only illegal mandate from President Biden’s HHS.

On August 26, two organizations of medical doctors and an obstetrician/gynecologist filed a lawsuit in federal court over a mandate from President Biden and HHS that will force doctors to perform gender-transition procedures, even on children.

The administration’s excuse for this mandate is Obamacare, but that 1,000-page statute . . . simply prohibits sex discrimination, as Congress understood that term when it enacted civil-rights laws half a century ago.

Yet on January 20, President Biden ordered his federal agencies to go far beyond the law and reinterpret sex discrimination to include “gender identity” discrimination. . . . continue reading

Manitoba medical student expelled over ‘pro-gun and pro-life’ Facebook posts wins court ruling

Rafael Zaki said he was expelled for his conscientious and religious beliefs. The judge said the university appeared biased in its decision

The National Post

Tyler Dawson

A Manitoba medical student who was expelled after failing to satisfactorily apologize for his controversial views on guns and abortion has been granted a new adjudication of his expulsion.

Rafael Zaki, a Coptic Orthodox student at the University of Manitoba who was supposed to graduate in 2022, posted three items on his Facebook page in February 2019. He was expelled in August 2019

One year later, after losing two appeals within the university system, Zaki asked Manitoba’s Court of Queen’s Bench to review the decision made by the University Discipline Committee. Zaki said he was expelled “for holding conscientious and religious beliefs that abortion is harmful.” . . . continue reading

The Battle for Conscience Rights Rages On

National Catholic Register

Michael Warsaw

In February 2012, EWTN filed the first of its legal challenges against the Obama administration’s so-called “HHS mandate,” which would have forced organizations like EWTN and the Little Sisters of the Poor to provide contraception, abortion-inducing drugs and sterilization procedures as part of our employer-sponsored health-care plans. For EWTN, that legal battle went on for nearly seven years — and for the Little Sisters, even longer. At the heart of that fight was whether or not the government could force faith-based organizations to act contrary to their deeply held religious values and in violation of their conscience.

More than nine years later, the issue of conscience rights is again taking center stage in our national discussions as the Biden administration continues to ramp up its promotion of tax-funded abortion and “gender-transition” medical treatments.

Earlier in March, the Senate confirmed Xavier Becerra, a Catholic who dissents openly from the Church’s foundational moral teachings regarding the sanctity of human life and sexuality, as secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services. As attorney general of California, Becerra infamously filed suit to take away the religious exemptions protecting the Little Sisters of the Poor from the provisions of the HHS mandate. 

The Senate also confirmed Dr. Rachel Levine, a biological man who identifies as a transgender woman, as assistant secretary of the HHS. 

With these two officials at the helm, the HHS is certain to rapidly accelerate the Biden administration’s radical agenda of tax-funded abortion and mandatory gender-reassignment treatments, including for children and teens. . . continue reading