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 Thursday, April 24, the 114th day of 2014. There are 251 days left in the year.

1864 -- 150 years ago: We learn that it is a contemplation to start a paper mill in Rock Island during the summer by a gentleman from the East.
1889 -- 125 years ago: The gates of Oklahoma were swung open at noon today, and a throng of more than 30,000 settlers started over its soil.
1914 -- 100 years ago: The Iowa Coliseum Co. was incorporated with $40,000 capital and planned a building on 4th Street between Warren and Green streets in Davenport.
1939 -- 75 years ago: Plans are being discussed for resurfacing the streets in the entire downtown district of Rock Island.
1964 -- 50 years ago: Some 45 jobs will be created at J.I. Case Co.'s Rock Island plant in a expansion of operations announced yesterday afternoon at the firm's headquarters in Racine, Wis.
1989 -- 25 years ago: Gardeners and farmers cheered, but not all Quad-Citians found joy Saturday as more than an inch of rain fell on the area. Motorists faced dangerous, rain-slick roads as the water activated grease and grime that had built up during dry weather.

(More History)