Concerning the Federal government’s recent, bizarre attempt to dictate its own ethical norms in the context of the sanctity of life and of human sexuality, the key issue is clearly whether the First Amendment of the United States Constitution remains a fundamental law of America.
Doubtless our Founding Fathers foresaw that such assaults upon our "first freedom" would occur. Hence, the clear, precise and unequivocal statement that religious liberty must be safeguarded. Has any Administration ever dared formally to attack, much less trample upon, this principle, enshrined within the United States Constitution, which ranks alongside the Declaration of Independence as among the most significant documents of history, in the lofty tradition of Magna Charta?
Freedom – the freedom enjoyed by Americans and America – although God-given, needs to be defended as threats to it develop. Scores of America’s men and women have sacrificed their lives, their health, their possessions, and even their goals to safeguard freedom, which is anchored in freedom of religion. Surely no Administration has the competence to dismiss all this.
Indeed, the very notion that anyone in secular power can interfere with or manipulate America’s religious freedom is Kafkaesque. The crudely unsophisticated effort simply cannot prevail, else all other freedoms – speech, assembly, etc. – can be toppled.
The German priest Alfred Delp, who was executed under the Nazi Regime, reminds us today: "Bread is important, freedom is more important, but most important of all is unbroken fidelity and faithful adoration."
When God is ignored, earthly power is always ambiguous, and subject to distortion.
As the poet Francis Thompson observed, all things betray the person who betrays God.