The stridency of the Obama administration’s secularism has led advocates of religious pluralism and the fully-clothed public square back to the Founders’ well to reproduce and rearticulate our vital heritage of religious liberty. Such stridency has been most clearly evidenced by Obama’s lawyers advocating against the rights of a Lutheran church to pick its clergy leadership in the Hosanna-Tabor case and the HHS contraceptive mandate. We could go on here, but these examples will do. Both cases illustrate the desire of the administration to do something that in other policy contexts it wouldn’t dare do: Privatize.
In a moving White House ceremony Thursday President Obama posthumously awarded Fr. Emil Kapaun, a Catholic priest, the Congressional Medal of Honor for the extraordinary care he gave his fellow soldiers during the Korean War, often at the risk of his own life. Army chaplain Kapaun died in a North Korean prisoner of war camp, after keeping his comrades’ spirits up.
One example of Fr. Kapaun’s nerve:
[A]s Father Kapaun was being led away, he saw another American — wounded, unable to walk, laying in a ditch, defenseless. An enemy soldier was standing over him, rifle aimed at his head, ready to shoot. And Father Kapaun marched over and pushed the enemy soldier aside. And then as the soldier watched, stunned, Father Kapaun carried that wounded American away.
In the camp, the priest administered sacraments, foraged at night for food, and encouraged the Americans to live.