Abortion

Best. Headline. Ever. (For Conservative & Liberal Fundraising Purposes.)

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Courtesy of C.J. Ciaramella's Twitter feed comes just about the best headline ever, at least if you're trying to raise money for right-wing or left-wing causes, don't you think?

The story runs in the Washigton Times and goes something like this:

The ACLU is demanding government records detailing reproductive healthcare policies for immigrant children and teens in shelters operated by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB). The USCCB has been contracted by the federal government to care for the surge of unaccompanied minors crossing into the U.S.

The group claims that the USCCB has been denying reproductive care for immigrants based on its religious doctrines and that by doing so the organization is breaking the rules of its contract with the federal government to provide necessary healthcare for immigrants….

Almost 60,000 unaccompanied minors illegally crossed the U.S./Mexico borer last year. Nearly a third were young girls and up to 80 percent of those girls were victims of sexual assault. USCCB was awarded a $73 million overall contract and received $10 million in 2013 alone to care for those unaccompanied minors.

"We don't think that religious organizations should be awarded the contract if they are unable to do the work that is required," said Ms. Amiri. "Because this contract was to provide day to day care to these teens including medical care, they need to be able to deliver the full range of whats required under the contract. We wouldn't say its ok in any circumstance for a contractor to say 'I want the money' and then not do the work."

The USCCB said that it has been successfully caring for needy children for years, without providing contraception or abortions and will continue to do so.

Read the whole story here.

The Times story quotes pro-life voices noting that the ACLU gets a boatload of federal money and has been caught overbilling the government and failing to report certain types of sexual abuse. I don't know if those charges are true (or whether a medical provider is legally bound to report crimes). Nor do I have any idea whether any of the unaccompanied minors have sought abortions or non-Church-approved forms of contraception. And finally, I have no idea if anything related to the Hobby Lobby case is relevant here (though I doubt it).

The one thing I do know is that C.J. Ciaramella was on the money when he tweeted:

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  2. Nick, I can’t seem to find the link to this article at The Onion. You must have NutraSweeted it or something.

    1. The Onion isn’t satire anymore. It is reality.

  3. How is the headline not true? More importantly, how is the church not giving minors birth control a “civil liberties issue.” That headline isn’t so much about the culture war as it is about the fact that the ACLU is now a full on totalitarian leftist organization.

    1. Catholic charities don’t need to accept the federal contract?

      It seems like it all hinges on what constitutes “healthcare,” and if that is defined in the contract.

      1. So what? That doesn’t make the issue a civil rights issue or the suit complete subversion of the ACLU’s stated mission.

        1. The USG says the kids have a right to healthcare, with the obligation falling upon the organization that is taking the money. Organization fails to do so, civil rights are being denied.

          1. We are talking about birth control. Claiming that is “health care” and a civil right is raping the language.

            1. Yes, yes. “It seems like it all hinges on what constitutes “healthcare,” and if that is defined in the contract.”

      2. “Catholic charities don’t need to accept the federal contract?”

        ^^^ This.

        Charity. Multi-million-Dollar Government contract. Not the same.

        Basic premise: government shouldn’t do charity. Rest of problems go away.

        1. “Charity. Multi-million-Dollar Government contract. Not the same.”

          ^^^This also.

        2. But, the government has a very compelling state interest in not having 60,000 minors wandering around the country uncared for. A Catholic organization pitched its ability to do the job, never defining that job as including abortions (which they could hardly have concealed that they don’t provide), and the government contracted with them, because it believed that the option that they provided was the best one.

          Now, the ACLU wants to sue by pretending that the wording of the contract means something other than what both parties to the contract (the government and the USCCB) knew it did not mean.

          1. I don’t disagree that what the ACLU is doing is disingenuous.

            I would also like to suggest that the Catholic Church is seeking monetary compensation from Leviathan for what *should* be an act of charity in compensation for a problem caused by Leviathan in the first place.

            It’s yet another example of some clauses of El Holy Book being really really sacred, others not so much.

            What Federal contract would Jesus have signed to aid the poor?

            The behavior on the part of all parties is hypocritical.

            1. In other words, when you sign a deal with the Devil, don’t act all shocked and surprised when the Devil doesn’t play nice.

  4. ACLU sues feds to force Catholic charities to provide abortions for illegal immigrants

    And you thought the days of illegal abortions were over.

    1. Do you support postnatal abortions for Illegal Immigrants?

  5. “I don’t know if those charges are true (or whether a medical provider is legally bound to report crimes). Nor do I have any idea whether any of the unaccompanied minors have sought abortions or non-Church-approved forms of contraception. And finally, I have no idea if anything related to the Hobby Lobby case is relevant here (though I doubt it).”

    Good to see Gillespie is engaged in such hard-hitting and well-researched journalism.

    1. Maybe I missed it, but the story seems to support the headline. If the headline is true, how is it a “mad lib of the culture war”, whatever the hell that is?

      1. I don’t even think this is a culture war issue since the question is whether or not they’re breaching the contract.

        If they aren’t breaching the contract then their religion is irrelevant because they’re not obligated to do this anyway. If they are breaching the contract then their religion is irrelevant because you can’t sign a contract saying you’ll do something and then not do it.

        1. See below. The contract doesn’t require them too. The ACLU is claiming it should have required and thus by implication does. The case is bullshit and nothing but harassment.

          1. Well, as the article says, the ACLU gets government money. I’m sure Nick will write off the Catholic Church suing the government to force them to lecture on the wonders of school prayer with the same disinterest.

            1. Makes you wonder about the instances where the ACLU has sided with the government on civil rights violations with all the gov. money they’re getting.

      2. If you were to do a culture war mad lib, this would be what it would look like.

        The fact that it is both a real, and an accurate, headline just points out how far down the road to utter cultural insanity we have gone.

    2. Hey, it’s not like he’s making Deblasio kind of money.

  6. I’m a bit on the fence regarding this without first seeing the contract. If the contract specifically stipulated that they have to do certain types of work and they aren’t doing it, then they can’t just say ‘it’s against our religious beliefs’ since they’re going back on their own contractual obligations.

    1. Maybe so. Even if that is true and they are violating the contracting, why the hell is the ACLU spending money and resources trying to enforce it?

      1. Because it’s good fundraising fodder

    2. I would think the bishops would be smart enough to mention “no abortions” in their contract, esp. since they’ve been doing this for a long time.

    3. From the article, their legal theory seems pretty weak.

      But Brigitte Amiri, a senior staff attorney at ACLU told The Times that group is concerned that by accepting federal money to care for immigrants and then denying them reproductive healthcare the USCCB may be in violation of the Constitutional separation of Church and state.

      According to Ms. Amiri the government’s contract with USCCB requires the group to abide by a number of federal laws including a settlement agreement that requires children in the government’s custody to receive access to routine medical services, including family planning services.

      First, it is not a violation of church and state by anything but the most ridiculous interpretation. Second, it is not clear to me at all that this contract would be subject to settlement agreements in other cases. Moreover, even if they did apply, the problem is with the government not Catholic Charities. The government signed a contract that didn’t provide all of the required services. That is not Catholic Charities’ fault.

      Bring a Qui Tam action against Catholic Charities, allows the ACLU to harass them and also via discovery monitor everything they do. The ACLU is full on fascist these days.

      1. If their argument is ‘this is an issue of separation of church and state’ then they’re idiots. Let’s say the charity in question weren’t a religious charity but still didn’t want to perform abortions, for whatever reason. If the feds contracted with them and the contract didn’t include abortions, then that theoretical non-religious charity isn’t bound to provide abortions.

        Therefore, if this contract doesn’t require abortions, then there has been no contract breach. You can’t argue it’s a 1st amendment issue just because they’re a religious charity.

        1. They are not idiots. They are assholes. They filed this suit to harass them. It is that simple. We all laugh but this is actually really sinister shit.

        2. I think they’re leaning on the phrase “necessary medical care.” And begging the question.

      2. So it’s a case of the ACLU deciding that abortions and contraception are “necessary medical care”?

        1. Pretty much. The theory is that every government contract must include “necessary medical care” and that includes abortions and birth control. Therefore, this contract includes those things by default.

    4. In my experience, Catholic organizations are very, very careful in their contracting to prevent having agreed to do things that they aren’t allowed to. I would be very surprised if this were the case.

      1. Read the article. The contract says no such thing.

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    Enjoy this thread, kiddos.

    1. Dude, stop hogging the popcorn. You fat pig, pass it over.

      1. Fuck you! It’s my carb-up day!

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          1. Sweet. Through your crossfit gym?

            1. Yes. There is a separate room just for Olympic lifting and one dedicated coach.
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        2. Then go eat a gallon of ice cream you big lady!

          1. MAYBE I WILL! MAYBE I ALREADY AM!

  8. Republicans should favor abortion because all those anchor babies will vote Democrat later on.

    1. A similar point was made by the authors of Freakonomics. Not with regard to politics, but explaining the dramatic drop in violent crime that started in the 90’s. They make a strong case that part of the reduction in crime could be attributed to the legalization of abortion in ’73…Which lead to a subsequent lack of unwanted/poorly raised kids to wreak havoc on society in their teens and twenties.

      1. “reduction in crime”

        Begs the question – the “reduction” requires that you start out defining abortion as not being a crime.

        The whole point of the prolife view is that legalizing or decriminalizing abortion is legally and morally impossible.

        1. Actions speak louder than words. If there were a person who methodically killed children in cold blood for a living in my vicinity, you damn well better believe that I wouldn’t worry about my earthly being. I’d stop them in any way possible without a second thought. What’s life in jail, or execution compared to stopping a cold-blooded killer of the those most innocent and unable to fight back. I’m guessing that your God would surely see your act as justifiable…

          …or maybe you don’t REALLY think that a tiny multi-celled embryo is equal to a living, breathing, thinking person. I certainly don’t.

  9. The group claims that the USCCB has been denying reproductive care for immigrants based on its religious doctrines and that by doing so the organization is breaking the rules of its contract with the federal government to provide necessary healthcare for immigrants…

    DENY CARE! DENY CARE! You see, if you don’t give your wallet, you’re DENYING MONEY to the robber!

    It’s a topsy-turvy world.

  10. Hello and welcome to this afternoon’s MEGA THREAD! Popcorn is $1.50, blast helmets are $20, umbrellas only $5, until the shitstorm starts, then they’re $35. Accepting bitcoin payments now!

  11. The USCCB said that it has been successfully caring for needy children for years, without providing contraception or abortions and will continue to do so.

    Feeding children is never enough. You must also stop them from reproducing because, well, do you want your daughter to marry one?

  12. The Times story quotes pro-life voices noting that the ACLU gets a boatload of federal money and has been caught overbilling the government and failing to report certain types of sexual abuse.

    Nick, the sources are saying it is PP not the ACLU that is doing that.

    “The ACLU is arguing senselessly that because the Catholic Church is a government contractor that provides crucial services to illegal minors, they must also provide abortions for them, which the Church considers a grave moral evil. What about government contractor Planned Parenthood? They have been caught multiple times putting minors in harm’s way by refusing to report rape and child abuse and have been found guilty in double-billing taxpayers for ‘services’ they perform, yet they still receive over $1.4 million per day in taxpayer dollar,” said Kristan Hawkins, President of Students for Life of America

    1. Nick probably smashed this piece out in a terrific hurry…

  13. Seems like the only relevant question here is whether or not the contract requires USCCB to provide abortion and contrceptives or not. If it does and they’re not, then they’re in breach of the terms of the contract. Of course, that would be between the government and the USCCB. Why the ACLU thinks it’s any of the business is beyond me.

    1. Re: Loki,

      Of course, that would be between the government and the USCCB. Why the ACLU thinks it’s any of the business is beyond me.

      Because the ACLU believes people have a right to free contraceptives and abortions. Doesn’t matter if the relationship between the government and the USCCB is only a contractual one.

  14. (or whether a medical provider is legally bound to report crimes).

    We’re ALL legally bound to report crimes.

    1. You’re forgetting the Planned Parenthood exemption, which also applies to a large number of other laws.

  15. The bottom line for the ACLU is that in getting help for refugees, the government should not turn to an organization which has extensive experience and effectiveness in this area. Impose conditions the USCCB won’t accept, let some other organization get the contract.

    For the Children!

    1. Now, I would prefer that the Church care for refugees, homeless, etc. out of money raised from the faithful, not money out of govt coffers. But it will be hard to do this after the government gives the contract, and subsidies, to some other group.

  16. Quick question:

    WHY does the ACLU get government money? Isn’t the government usually the target of the ACLU’s lawsuits?

    1. It doesnt. Youre referencing a typo.

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