Contraception and the Culture War

by The American Interest | February 23. 2012

Writing as a Lutheran sociologist “without a dog in this fight,” Peter Berger comments on a little-reported dynamic that plays an important role in the current clash between advocates of Obamacare’s HHS mandate and religious believers:  the unique bonds that have forged between Evangelicals and Catholics in the last three decades.  Berger offers a lucid window into collaborative work between Fr. Richard John Neuhaus, national evangelical leader Charles Colson, and other “culture war” advocates who initially battled abortion and came to share other social and political causes as well.  The historic strength of this alliance, which has now broadened to include other religions' conservatives who share the American view of religious liberty, will be an important dynamic in the coming confrontation—a confrontation, Berger warns, which “is not about contraception [but] about freedom of religion.”  Religious freedom, writes Berger, “is a central item of the American political creed, and the Obama White House is right in not wanting to be seen as its adversary.”

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