Although a federal appellate panel in St. Louis has ruled that the Union Pacific Railroad Company did not discriminate against its female employees by excluding birth-control pills from its health insurance coverage, the ruling will probably not affect health plans that already cover contraceptives.
Setback for Contraception Fans
While the Eighth Circuit ruled 2 to 1 that since the railroad’s health insurance plan did not cover any type of conraception for men or women, it didn’t violate the Pregnancy Discrimination Act by not covering the pill for women. Several women had filed lawsuits that were consolidated into a class action suit on behalf of all female employees. For the time being they have lost their case but they will undoubtedly appeal.
Planned Parenthood is outraged at the latest decision but the battle for mandatory coverage of contraceptives as a form of “health care” will continue, even though prescribing poison would not seem to have much to do with advancing anyone’s health. But in this strange new world we live in, what can you excpet but for good to be called evil, and evil to be called good?
New Survey on the Values Divide
We have just received a copy of the National Cultural Values Survey [PDF]“ done for the Culture and Media Institute by the polling firm of Fabrizio, McLaughhlin and Associates. It has a margin of error of 2.2 %. It works with and represents three categories of Americans: orthodox, independent and progressives.
The orthodox, those who believe in God and try to follow His commandments, represent less than a third of American adults, according to the survey. The orthodox want to see government policies reflect religious values. The orthodox, according to the terms of the survey, believe in black and white moral issues.
The second category in the survey, the independents represent about 46% of American Adults. While 91% of them claim to believe in God, they tend not to believe in strict standards of moralilty. They see human acts in shades of grey, join the orthodox in most judgments dealing with sexual morality, respect Biblical values to guide government laws, but depend more on their own judgement than on Biblical dictates.
The third category, the progressives, represent 17% of the public and reject deep religious beliefs as necessary for leading a good life. They practice situation ethics. They oppose religious values in government, and just over half, 53%, say they believe in God. A large 33% say they do not believe in God, which is four times the national figure of 8% non-believers.
Among the survey’s general findings, Americans believe the country is in a moral decline, and they say the major contributors to this slide are the news and entertainment media. Americans still believe in a standard of morality that supports industry, truthfulness, thrift and charity, but in practice they easily betray all of these ideals.
Sexual mores are at an all time low with 65% percent excusing sex outside marriage, only 49% who think homosexuality is wrong, and 51% calling themselves pro-choice. While 87% of Americans say they believe in God, only 36% or just over one-third, believe people should live by God’s principles. Just under half of Americans regularly attend church.
America, the survey shows, no longer enjoys cultural consensus on God, religion, and what constitutes right and wrong. We are in a cultural war with two major values groups, religious vs. secular , the orthodox believing in living by God’s revealed morality and the secular progressives writing their own moral code.
We are thus in a moral decline, and both sides see the media as promoting the progressive secular world-view. If the media continues to undermine orthodox faith and values, it will be difficult to reverse this moral decline.
The National Cultural Values Survey paints a grim picture of America in 2007, a picture that tells of a rapid decline of values, a fall into moral chaos and a continuing downward spiral. Only hard work on the part of orthodox church leaders, God fearing citizens and practicing Christians can start the slow, grinding return to spiritual health and sanity in this country. And they must begin more and more to influence the media.
That means your work and mine is cut out for us. So let’s get busy.