Abortion: a matter of religious freedom?

Renew AmericaBy Matt C. Abbott

The Catholic bishops, who rightly oppose the Obama administration's grossly unjust HHS mandate, are united in promoting freedom of religion. And on Oct. 20, pro-lifers of various denominations will be rallying once again in support of religious freedom. (Click here to find a rally near you.)

But what about those who claim that abortion itself is a matter of religious freedom? Consider: In 1998, more than 700 pro-abortion rabbis signed a letter using the 'freedom of religion' argument to support President Clinton's veto of the partial-birth abortion ban. (Click here to read the text of the letter.)

I asked Eric J. Scheidler, executive director of the Pro-Life Action League and co-director of the Oct. 20 Stand Up for Religious Freedom Rally, to respond to the following question:

"What is the best response to abortion advocates who have asserted, and may assert even more boldly in the near future, that abortion is a 'religious right'; that outlawing or even restricting abortion in any way is a violation of religious freedom?"

Eric's response (slightly edited):

While the United States was founded on strong principles of religious liberty and pluralism, religious freedom is not an absolute freedom. In particular, that freedom cannot impinge on more fundamental freedoms like the right to life. Read More: http://www.renewamerica.com/columns/abbott/121018