Fox News occasionally features a few non-Catholic clergy; but their one true clergyperson, who gets the sweetest face time, is the sweet faced Catholic priest, Fr. Jonathan Morris. Morris is always willing to preach the GOP gospel to his Fox flock which, thanks to his Facebook cult who see him as divinely inspired, is growing (and for that Roger Ailes gives thanks and praise). He has been a key part of the "fair & balanced" (?) Fox support for the Catholic Church's opposition to the HHS mandate which requires all employers to provide birth control coverage, in their health care plans, except for church employees and parochial schools. The Catholic bishops are still whining that this is a "violation of religious freedom." As such, the anti-Obama Fox News provides Morris a pulpit from which to preach this message and in so doing, Morris actually said that Catholic priests should be willing to die for the cause. Last Sunday, a still alive Morris continued the whine and, once again, promoted the Fox News advanced "pro-life" lie about how the mandate covers abortion drugs. Bless you father, for you have sinned?
After "The Fight for Faith" graphic was shown, Alisyn Camerota immediately framed the propaganda message: "The Obamacare mandate is forcing many employers and charities to choose between their religious beliefs or fork over millions of dollars in fines." Video of anti-choice GOP congressman, Jeff Fortenberry,stating that the mandate "targets people in faith communities" and that nobody "should be forced to choose between their deeply held reasoned beliefs and the law," was shown. The Fox chyron defined, as Fox fact, the propaganda message: "Obamacare Overreach, Mandate Crushes Religious Freedoms." It was immediately followed by more agitprop: "Faith Fight, Religious Freedom vs. Health Care."
Fr. Morris claimed that many religious groups have been advocating for more accessible health care and now they are "being forced to choose between offering abortion inducing drugs and sterilizations." (Wrong padre, abortion drugs, like RU 486 are not covered. Emergency contraception, which prevents ovulation is) The erstwhile little priest did not mention that liberal Protestant and Jewish groups support the mandate. With maximum spittle and jazz hands he yammered about the fines imposed on those who don't comply. The chyron reinforced the Fox agitprop: "Government Gall, HHS Intrusion on American Liberties." (Notice, no Cavuto question mark,)
To Camerota's question of what is the answer, Morris sputtered that they need to "respect freedom of conscience as the US has been respecting for all these years." He compared opposition to the mandate to those who are conscientious objectors such as the Amish. Working in the obligatory Obama smear, the "celibate" priest fulminated that "for some reason, the Obama administration has decided it is so important for our country, for you to offer all these things for free for all your employees." He expressed the hope that an "exception" would be granted to those who say it's against their religion. Morris said that there is a chance that the administration will reverse course and that he hopes that all the court cases, challenging the ruling, will prevail.
So there you have it ladies. Fr. Morris, who doesn't need birth control, says that if you work for a Catholic you shouldn't have access to the same kind of reproductive health care that women, who work for employers who don't have a problem with birth control coverage, do. In other words, "religious freedom," as defined by the Catholic Church and other conservative faith communities, should allow employers to discriminate even in hospitals and organizations that get taxpayer dollars!
And, as in all the many other segments which promoted the mainly Catholic opposition to the policy, Morris didn't mention that many Catholic universities and hospitals already cover, OMG, birth control. He also didn't mention Cardinal Dolan's dirty little secret, now exposed, that his arch-diocese has been covering birth control costs, for its workers, for decades. Funny, during one of the Fox propaganda pieces, there was a chyron quoting Dolan as saying that the HHS rules were "unprecedented." So despite Morris' hissy fits, there has been precedent. Not that you'd hear about that on "fair & balanced" Fox. Sin of omission, padre? I suppose that's not as bad as lying...