FRC Blog

Action #9 - Nullify The HHS Contraception Mandate

by Family Research Council

December 16, 2016

The Obama administration’s HHS contraceptive mandate that requires all employers to offer no-cost contraceptive drugs and devices is a troubling threat to conscience, especially since it involves coverage of some pills and procedures which can destroy human embryos. While the Supreme Court upheld the right of businesses like Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood Specialties, Inc. from the regulation, the Obama administration issued a regulation with an accounting gimmick for the for non-profit “religious organizations” on July 2, 2013. This problem could be fixed by ending all litigation enforcing the HHS contraception mandate, issuing broad conscience exemptions from mandates requiring coverage of any health services or items that violate the beliefs of a religious organization, and revising the HRSAWomen’s Preventive Services Guidelines” to exclude the provision of drugs or devices which can destroy human embryos.

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Action #8 - Establish Ethical Tissue Research

by Family Research Council

December 16, 2016

The Obama administrations’ DOJ has refused to investigate potential violations of federal fetal tissue laws and federal medical privacy laws by abortion providers and tissue procurement companies. A way to address this issue is for DOJ to investigate potential violations of the law revealed in shocking undercover videos and in the work of the House Energy and Commerce’s Select Panel on Infant Lives by abortion providers like Planned Parenthood and by human tissue procurement companies like Stem Express for: (a) selling fetal tissue for profit; (b) changing abortion methods without consent for tissue procurement; (c) violating HIPPA privacy protections for women in their obtaining and selling of fetal tissue; (d) procuring fraudulent IRB certifications; and (e) potentially killing born-alive babies for the purpose of organ harvesting.

Another way to address this issue is to direct HHS/NIH to implement a moratorium on fetal tissue research in which the tissue was derived from aborted fetuses, while ethical alternatives are explored. In this regard, the administration should revise the “Policy and Procedures for Obtaining Human Fetal Tissue for Research Purposes in the Intramural Research Program at NIH,” which was issued on December 15, 2015, but last updated October 7, 2016, and should restore President George H.W. Bush’s May 19, 1992 rules establishing a fetal tissue bank obtained from ethical sources like ectopic pregnancies and miscarriages.

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Action #7 - Reform Federally Funded IVF Regulations

by Family Research Council

December 16, 2016

On April 3, 2012, the Obama administration’s DOD began funding IVF treatments for active military personnel but without sufficient protections for human embryos created in the process. The FY17 Military, Constructions, Veterans Affairs appropriations law expanded this allowance to include veterans, and while it cross-referenced the Dickey-Wicker amendment which protects against funding embryo destruction under the Health and Human Services Department, it did not explicitly prevent against embryo destruction. One way to address the embryo protection issue in IVF treatments is to direct DOD and VA to only fund IVF fertility treatments in which human embryos are not knowingly destroyed, discarded, donated to research, or otherwise harmed prior to embryo transfer.

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Action #6 - Defund Embryonic Stem Cell Research

by Family Research Council

December 16, 2016

The Obama administration issued an executive order on March 9, 2009 that allowed funding for embryo-destructive stem cell research by narrowing the enforcement of the Dickey-Wicker amendment in federal law which prevents funding for research that harms or destroys human embryos. The administration rescinded human embryo protections in federal research put in place by President Bush, and implemented its embryo-destructive research policies on July 30, 2009 in NIH’s “Guidelines for Human Stem Cell Research.” One way to address the Obama administration’s approval of embryo-destructive research funding is to restore President George W. Bush’s June 20, 2007 executive order protecting human embryos in federally funded research and by redirecting funding for ethical stem cell and regenerative research proving effective in the treatment of patients for numerous diseases.

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Action #5 - Defund Human-Animal Chimera Research

by Family Research Council

December 16, 2016

The Obama administration proposed a new NIH policy, issued on August 5, 2016 that would allow for NIH to fund human-animal chimera research. The proposed scope of funding would include research which attempts to give an animal (a chimp, pig, mouse, etc.) a substantially human brain or the ability to produce human sperm or egg cells, which can affect heredity. This serious violation of bioethics and common human decency could be fixed by simply withdrawing the proposed chimera funding policy.

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Action #4 - Withdraw Title X Planned Parenthood Funding

by Family Research Council

December 16, 2016

The Obama administration proposed a rule on September 7, 2016 to block states from defunding Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers from Title X. This problematic rule would harm states that have chosen to prioritize family planning funds for health clinics and community health centers that seamlessly offer a full range of healthcare services including family planning, but do not participate in abortion. This problem could be fixed by simply withdrawing the proposed Title X regulation.

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Action #3 - Establish Transparency Regarding Obamacare’s Abortion Coverage

by Family Research Council

December 16, 2016

Americans should be informed about whether their Obamacare plans cover abortion or not, especially since even the abortion funding schemes in Obamacare require such notice and a “separate” payment for abortion in such plans. However, the Obama administration implemented rules issued on February 27, 2015 allowing insurers to hide the abortion surcharge in plans that cover abortion, and which are subsidized by federal premium credits. Moreover, the ACA requires multistate plans to provide one pro-life plan in each state. However, rules issued on February 24, 2015 implementing this requirement do not require pro-life plans until next year. Another example of lawlessness is the Obama administration’s rule on October 2, 2013 which allowed federal employee subsidies for health plans with abortion coverage for Members of Congress and their staff, despite current law forbidding such subsidies.

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Action #2 - Defund UNFPA

by Family Research Council

December 16, 2016

The Obama administration restored funding to the United Nations Population Fund which funds coercive abortion practices overseas, especially in China. Funding such entities violates current law prohibiting U.S. funds from involvement in coercive abortion practices. One way to fix this problem is to restore President George W. Bush’s State Department restriction on UNFPA funding first issued on July 24, 2002, and continued through fiscal year 2008.

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The Top 20 Actions the Trump Administration Must Take in the First 100 Days

by Family Research Council

December 16, 2016

Each presidential administration has the opportunity to impact everyday Americans in significant ways by issuing executive orders, agency regulations, and administrative guidance through memoranda, letters, and other internal documents issued by the agencies and departments of the Executive Branch.

In the last eight years, the Obama administration enacted multiple agency actions that were extra legal or illegal.

Over the next four weeks, we will highlight the top 20 ways that the Trump administration can address values issues through administrative and agency actions in order to repair some of the damage that the Obama administration has inflicted on the dignity of life, natural marriage, and religious liberty.

 

Action #1 – Restore The Mexico City Policy

The Obama administration rescinded the Mexico City Policy, which was first implemented by President Reagan, to prevent taxpayer dollars from funding international organizations that perform or promote abortion overseas. Millions of taxpayer dollars have funded abortion providers like International Planned Parenthood. One way to address the problem of funding abortion providers overseas is to rescind Obama’s Memorandum on the Mexico City Policy, issued January 23, 2009, and to restore President George W. Bush’s Memorandum Restoring the Mexico City Policy, issued on March 29, 2001.

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Unmasking the DOD’s Endorsement of the Humanism Religion

by Guest Author

December 16, 2016

Disclaimer: The following was written by an active duty Air Force officer who wishes to remain anonymous. It is not necessarily the view of Family Research Council, nor any of its member or partner organizations. While the author does not have legal training, the author has experienced firsthand the DOD’s “sensitivity” and “inclusion” efforts relative to LGBT service members. The Washington Free Beacon recently published a piece on the Naval Academy’s “Transgender 101” course. This officer offers readers a view from the inside of the DOD, further demonstrating just how indoctrinating the Armed Forces have become in their promotion of humanist ideals. 

When you hear the word “religion,” does Humanism immediately come to mind? Probably not. However, pragmatically and legally, Humanism is just as much of a religion as Christianity and Islam. This article articulates the claim that the DOD has endorsed the religion of Humanism by promoting the LGBT movement.

Statements in Humanist writings reveal the pragmatic aspect of Humanism as a religion. One definition of Humanism listed by the American Humanist Association states, “Humanism serves, for many humanists, some of the psychological and social functions of a religion, but without belief in deities, transcendental entities, miracles, life after death, and the supernatural.”[i] In regards to morality, the Bristol Humanist Group says “Humanism is an approach to life based on reason and our common humanity, recognizing that moral values are properly founded on human nature and experience alone.”[ii] While most other religions look to the authority of God, gods, and associated sacred texts to define morality, Humanism establishes human opinion as its moral authority. As for the legal status of Humanism as a religion, a 1961 Supreme Court decision, Torcaso v. Watkins categorized “Secular Humanism” as a religion.American Humanist Association v. U.S. ruled that “…Secular Humanism is a religion for Establishment Clause purposes…”[iv]

Specific views regarding sexual morality are based on presupposed beliefs grounded in a moral authority and religious philosophy. In this respect, sexual morality is no different than other religious topics such as origins, purpose of life, salvation, and so forth. For example, Christianity uses the Bible as its moral authority, Islam uses the Qur’an, Hinduism uses the Dharma Shastra, etc. In this article, religious labels will be used to identify worldviews, not individuals.  

The Human Rights Campaign (HRC), which considers itself the “largest civil rights organization,” assumes that sexual orientation and gender identity are civil rights issues such as gender and skin color.[v] However, the HRC fails to distinguish between physical characteristics and moral beliefs. Although an individual may have homosexual or transgender desires, that does not necessarily mean he or she automatically believes that acting on those desires is morally right. Columnist Matt Moore, among others, often writes about this struggle.[vi] While advocating for the “rights” of homosexuality and transgenderism, the HRC and other LGBT organizations inherently assume that these behaviors are morally right. This implies a moral authority and religious philosophy. A light analysis of various moral authorities identifies which one is most consistent with the LGBT movement.

The Christian worldview professes God as the highest moral authority via the Bible. Jesus, God in the flesh, affirms in Matthew 19:4-5 and Mark 10:6-9 that God created man and woman at creation, and implies that marriage is for one man and one woman.[vii] This concept opposes both same-sex marriage and transgenderism. Homosexual acts are condemned in biblical verses such as Leviticus 18:22, Romans 1:26-27, 1 Timothy 1:10, and 1 Corinthians 6:9-11.[viii] Clearly, the LGBT movement does not submit to the authority of the Bible. Critics of this argument may point to various denominations professing Judaism or Christianity that support homosexuality and transgenderism.[ix] However, these are simply examples of inconsistency concerning moral authority. Individuals and organizations can (and often do) inconsistently submit to different moral authorities on different topics.

By continuing to apply this logic, other moral authorities and religious philosophies can be eliminated in determining which one suits the LGBT movement. The Islamic worldview professes Allah as the highest moral authority via the Qur’an. Homosexual activity is described as “transgressing beyond bounds” in Sürah 7:80-81 and “wickedness” in Sürah 29:28-29.[x] See also Sürah 26:165-166 and 27:55.[xi] Clearly, the LGBT movement does not submit to the Islamic moral authority. Hinduism has a large variety of gods and law books that practicing Hindus use for guidance. The HRC rates the Hinduism position on LGBT issues as “unclear” due to a lack of “central authority.”[xii] The HRC gives the Buddhism position on LGBT issues the same rating for similar reasons.[xiii] Since even a pro-LGBT group such as the HRC rates Hinduism and Buddhism as “unclear” at best on LGBT issues, these religions can be eliminated in this analysis. We have now eliminated the moral authorities of the largest religions of the world as the authority of LGBT beliefs, except one: human opinion, the moral authority of Humanism.

Although human opinion alone can certainly disagree with the LGBT movement, it is not arbitrary to say that the LGBT movement submits to the moral authority of human opinion. Humanist statements explicitly demonstrate the alignment of LGBT causes and the Humanist worldview. The HRC highlights Humanist advocacy for same-sex marriage and transgenderism, and cites the American Humanist Association’s LGBTQ Humanist Council as a resource.[xiv] One of the purposes of the LGBTQ Humanist Council is “…to articulate the values of the humanist philosophy and ethics across the country.”[xv] Similarly, the Galha LGBT Humanists organization is a section of the British Humanist Association (BHA).[xvi] According to the BHA, “…Galha LGBT Humanists is an integral section of the British Humanist Association, promoting Humanism and LGBT equality worldwide.”[xvii] Furthermore, the Galha website notes “For over 30 years Galha LGBT Humanists has promoted humanism as a rational, naturalistic worldview…”[xviii] Humanist groups are in philosophical agreement with the LGBT movement, as evidenced by the fact that they use LGBT Humanist groups to promote the Humanism religion. Since the LGBT movement is consistent with the religion of Humanism, then it is inappropriate for the DOD to endorse such a movement.  

Department of Defense directive (DODD) 1020.02E commits the logical fallacy of equating “sexual orientation” with physical characteristics such as gender and skin color.[xix] This mischaracterization has enabled the DOD to promote the “religion” of Humanism by celebrating LGBT Pride Month, similar to monthly celebrations of ethnic groups.[xx] Like many other military installations, Wright-Patterson AFB celebrates LGBT Pride Month. For example, in 2014 the LGBT Pride Month Committee Chair sent an e-mail to the entire base detailing the celebratory events, which included weekly base newspaper articles promoting LGBT “awareness,” and a Pride Month 5K “Fun Run.”[xxi] In 2016, the base Wing Commander invited the base to an LGBT celebratory luncheon.[xxii] While the DOD celebrates Humanist beliefs, it also reprimands those who oppose these beliefs.

Since the DOD started endorsing the LGBT movement, there have been multiple instances of service members being reprimanded for expressing their non-Humanistic beliefs on sexual morality. An Army chaplain’s assistant was accused of creating a “hostile and antagonistic” environment after sharing her biblical view of homosexuality via Facebook, and was threatened with the Uniform Code of Military Justice.[xxiii] A highly decorated 19-year Navy veteran, Chaplain Wes Modder faced involuntary separation for sharing his non-Humanistic beliefs on sexual morality in a private counseling session.[xxiv] SMSgt Phillip Monk, a 19-year veteran of the Air Force was relieved of his duties after he refused to comply with his commander’s viewpoint (who identifies as homosexual) that beliefs against same-sex marriage are “discrimination.”[xxv]

Evidently, the Humanist LGBT philosophy is the religious preference of choice for the DOD. The DOD needs to consider this matter and make appropriate policy changes. If the DOD fails to do so, the Humanism religion will continue to expand under the guise of “civil rights,” making authentic diversity, inclusion, and religious liberty an impossibility in the U.S. Armed Forces.



[i]. “Definitions of Humanism,” American Humanist Association, accessed 24 September 2015, http://www.americanhumanist.org/Humanism/Definitions_of_Humanism.

[ii]. Ibid.

[iii]. Torcaso v. Watkins, Supreme Court, 367 U.S. 488 (1961).

[iv]. American Humanist Association v. US, US District Court, Oregon, 3:14-cv-00565-HA (2014).

[v]. “The HRC Story,” Human Rights Campaign, accessed 27 September 2015, http://www.hrc.org/the-hrc-story/about-us.

[vi]. Consider the following: Matt Moore, “Ten Empowering Truths for Gay Christians,” The Christian Post, 31 October 2015,

http://www.christianpost.com/news/gay-christians-bible-homosexuality-same-sex-attraction-148569/.

[vii]. New King James Version (Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1982), https://www.biblegateway.com.

[viii]. Ibid.

[ix]. “Faith Positions on Marriage Equality,” Human Rights Campaign, accessed 27 September 2015, http://www.hrc.org/resources/entry/positions-of-faith-on-same-sex-marriage.

[x]. Abdullah Yusuf Ali, The Holy Qur’an, trans. (London: Wordsworth Editions Limited, 2000), https://www.scribd.com/read/235608069/The-Holy-Qur-an.

[xi]. Ibid.

[xii]. “Stances of Faith on LGBT Issues: Hinduism,” Human Rights Campaign, 10 June 2015, http://www.hrc.org/resources/entry/stances-of-faiths-on-lgbt-issues-hinduism.

[xiii]. “Stances of Faith on LGBT Issues: Buddhism,” Human Rights Campaign, accessed 29 September 2015, http://www.hrc.org/resources/entry/stances-of-faiths-on-lgbt-issues-buddhism.

[xiv]. “Stances of Faith on LGBT Issues: Humanism,” Human Rights Campaign, 29 October 2014, http://www.hrc.org/resources/entry/stances-of-faiths-on-lgbt-issues-humanism.

[xv]. “About the LGBTQ Humanist Council,” LGBTQ Humanist Council, accessed 3 October 2015, http://lgbthumanists.org/about/.

[xvi]. “LGBT Humanists,” British Humanist Association, accessed 3 October 2015, https://humanism.org.uk
 /community/lgbt-humanists/.

[xvii]. Ibid.

[xviii]. “Gahla–Home,” Gahla LGBT Humanists, accessed 3 October 2015, http://www.galha.org/.

[xix]. DOD Directive (DODD) 1020.02E, Diversity Management and Equal Opportunity in the DOD, 8 June 2015.

[xx]. “2015 Observances,” Office of Diversity Management and Equal Opportunity, accessed 3 October 2015.

[xxi]. CMSgt Shawn Sill, WPAFB LGBT Pride Month Committee Chair, to Wright-Patterson All Personnel, e-mail, 11 June 2014.

 

[xxiii]. Todd Starnes, “Fox Exclusive: Airman Facing Punishment for Religious Beliefs,” Fox News, 6 August 2013, http://insider.foxnews.com/2013/08/06/airman-facing-punishment-religious-beliefs.

[xxiv]. Todd Starnes, “Former SEALS Chaplain Could be Kicked Out of Navy for Christian Beliefs,” Fox News, 9 March 2015, http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2015/03/09/former-seals-chaplain-could-be-kicked-out-navy-for-christian-beliefs.html.

[xxv]. Todd Starnes, “Airman Punished for Objecting to Gay Marriage,” Fox News Radio, 14 August 2013, http://radio.foxnews.com/toddstarnes/top-stories/airmen-punished-for-objecting-to-gay-marriage.html.

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