This morning, President Obama declared that he couldn’t give a rip about the services that various religious organizations from Catholic Charities to World Vision provide to the people of the United States through their contracts with the federal government. As far as he is concerned, they can get with the gay rights program or take their marbles and go home.
Well, he didn’t exactly say that, but it was the message that was received loud and clear. According to CBS:
President Obama signed an executive order Monday protecting gay and transgender federal contractors from discrimination, the latest in his effort to act on Democratic-supported issues he says are being ignored by the Republican-led House.
“America’s federal contracts should not subsidize discrimination against the American people,” the president told a crowd of supporters gathered in the White House. “I firmly believe that its time to address this injustice for every American.”
The executive order, which the White House announced last month, impacts an estimated 28 million workers, or one-fifth of the U.S. workforce, and does not include an exemption for religious organizations that had been sought by some faith and conservative groups.
The executive order signed Monday amends a 1965 executive order signed by President Lyndon Johnson that prohibits federal contractors from discriminating based on race, religion, gender or national identity, adding sexual orientation and gender to the list of protections. The change will take effect early next year, administration officials said last week.
Another 1969 order from President Richard Nixon prohibited discrimination against federal workers based on race, religion, gender, nationality, age or disability. President Clinton added sexual orientation during his two terms in office, and Mr. Obama adds gender identity to the list. That change will take effect immediately.
Mr. Obama leaves in place an amendment to the 1965 executive order by former President George W. Bush in 2002 that allow religious groups to use religion as a factor in hiring and firing. But he will not grant a religious exemption to the new rule despite lobbying from religious organizations and conservative groups to do so.
That’s awfully nice of him to leave in the provision for religious organizations to take, you know,religion into account when hiring. But apparently the only form of religion that will be allowed is the liberal form that says sexual behavior is of no consequence, a moral triviality, a matter of purely private concern. And since “gender identity” is the new cause du jour, it also means that employers in general, not just religious organizations, will be required to hire a certain percentage of mentally ill people in order to satisfy the White House diktat.
Just as the power to tax is the power to destroy, the power to dole out money is the power to control. It is time for Christian organizations–or at least those that still care about traditional, orthodox Christian teaching on sexuality–to tell the federal government they will no longer be controlled by it. If it means scaling back the work they do, that would be unfortunate, but the alternative is to become arms of a government that is increasingly hostile to Christianity.