Letter: Freedom of worship versus our freedom of religion

Posted Online: Feb. 03, 2013, 6:00 am
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David Green, CEO of Christian retail store chains Hobby Lobby and Mardel, has recently filed a lawsuit against the Obama administration for its newly implemented HHS mandate.

The mandate requires employers to provide two abortion-causing drugs for their employees. As pro-life, Bible-believing Christians, the Green family requested an exemption. The request was denied, despite the fact that the government had issued several other similar exemptions to for-profit businesses for varying reasons other than religious beliefs.

Faced with crushing fines of $1.3 million a day beginning Jan. 1 if they refused to implement the mandate, the Greens were forced to take their case to court.

David Green and his family have endured much criticism from both secular and Christian parties for their decision to fight the mandate. There are many who would argue that although a Christian may have the freedom of private worship in America, as soon as he enters the realm of for-profit business he should be forced to abide by federal laws, regardless of his belief system.
This line of thinking is absurd and unconstitutional.

The First Amendment specifically grants American citizens the freedom of religion, not simply the freedom of worship, a phrase often used by President Obama in his speeches. Included in this freedom of religion is the right to operate one's property in accordance to one's religious beliefs. The federal government has no right to force an American citizen to choose between obeying the law and violating his beliefs.

Holly Gerboth,


Local events heading

  Today is Sunday, April 20, the 110th day of 2014. There are 255 days left in the year.

1864 -- 150 years ago: The attention of contractors is called to proposals for building a magazine. The building is to be erected on the south side of the island, above the railroad, nearly opposite Sinnit's ice houses.
1889 -- 125 years ago: Ladies patent leather tip shoes were selling for $3 at the M & K store, and men's spring overcoats were advertised at $7.50.
1914 -- 100 years ago: Fred Feuchter, of Davenport, was elected president of the Tri-City Post Office Clerks club, and Joe Goldsmith, of Rock Island, was named secretary treasurer.
1939 -- 75 years ago: Mass vaccination of more than 1,600 employed of the Rock Island Arsenal has been ordered by Col. Norman Ramsey after a 13-year-old daughter of the Arsenal manager became ill with smallpox.
1964 -- 50 years ago: The 1964 Scout-O-Rama of the Sac-Fox Council of Boy Scouts closed a two-day session last evening at the Rock Island Armory with 5,000 paid attendance.
1989 -- 25 years ago: "From the horse and buggy days ... to this" said Mercer County Sheriff Marvin Thirtyacre, waving his hand to indicate the sheriff's department facilities at the new $1.5 million Mercer County Jail in Aledo.

(More History)