March 5, 2012, 9:33 am
The Catholic Church has made it abundantly clear in the past few weeks that it does not want to be forced to provide health insurance coverage for those in its employ who may want to avail themselves of contraceptives.
This has been framed by the Christian Right as a “religious freedom” issue. I too have an interest in religious freedom–which, as you may recall, I see as complementary to freedom from religion. For these reasons, I think it is important to clarify some recurring confusions in what is emerging as the central faith-based flashpoint in the 2012 presidential race and a potential wedge issue.
Now religious freedom is a sterling value. Secularists, I argue, greatly appreciate its import and significance. If you read my forthcoming book, you will see that religious freedom is one of the central components of the secular vision as it developed in Christian political…