by Jon Schweppe
So . . . at what point do we start fighting back?
Last Friday, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced a new rule in relation to Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act, which will require all hospitals to perform abortions and sex change operations under the auspice of Title IX protections, or lose their federal funding, which includes Medicare and Medicaid reimbursements.
The rule did not include an exemption for religious freedom, although HHS does admit that “existing protections for religious freedom and conscience” may still apply — an ironic admission given the administration’s unwillingness to compromise with the Little Sisters of the Poor.
The rule will require physicians, hospitals, insurers, and other healthcare entities that receive federal funds — such as Medicare and Medicaid — to include gender transition treatments and even abortion among their services for the alleged sake of “equity.”
What are the real world consequences of this?
Well, to start, a substantial portion of hospital revenue comes from Medicare and Medicaid reimbursements. A hospital simply can’t function without this funding. It’s not possible. So by potentially forcing religious hospitals to perform abortions and sex change operations against their beliefs, which most will not do, the HHS hospital mandate could effectively shut them all down.
Sixty-two percent of all hospitals in the U.S. are non-profit hospitals, and the vast majority of those have religious affiliations. A mass exodus of religious hospitals would completely shake the health care system, destroy communities, ruin livelihoods, and put thousands of lives at risk.
And why? To advance a radical, anti-religious left wing agenda. To make abortion great again. To place sex change operations on the same level of medical importance as chemotherapy. To demonize, otherize, and criminalize people of faith.
Obviously, this is a telling moment for the future of America. Will we sit back and watch? Or will we fight?
I hope we fight.
Jon Schweppe is the Communications Director for American Principles Project. Follow him on Twitter @JonSchweppe.