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Monday, July 25, 2005

FMLA, the Religious Right, and WWJD

Please don’t think I’m here to slam the religious right again. I’m asking serious questions of my brothers and sisters from the right in an attempt to walk through together what I think is an issue of major import.

I heard Sunday on CNN that the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) is under fire from several major US corporations. (I was kind of shocked that Hallmark Cards Inc. is leading the charge—they seem so, dare I say it? Family friendly and nice!) I read about it this morning on the Seattle Post-Intelligencer.

A brief description of the FMLA is that it is a federal law that requires employers with more than 50 employees to allow certain employees to take up to 12 weeks unpaid leave due to the birth or adoption of a child, serious illness, or serious illness of a child, spouse, or parent.

My question is this….How the heck can persons who call themselves Christians not be furious that our president could (and probably will) allow this law to be abolished or seriously altered? If you seriously want abortion abolished, why wouldn’t you want those who are adopting children to be afforded the opportunity to spend time with their children at the beginning of this wonderful process?

The argument for limiting or repealing the law is that it costs business a lot of money each year. How much? That’s debated. But should the cost involved be the determining factor for Christians? I don’t think it should. The religious right often employs the “big government is bad” hermeneutic when determining whether or not an issue should be regulated by legislation. I think that this is ultimately a dangerous approach that results in persons that Jesus would want to protect being hurt.

Let me know what you think!
Here's an article that is critical of the FMLA.
Here's a blog entry by someone who supports the FMLA and who references Patti Phillips who through the FMLA was able to spend time with her daughter who died of cancer.


At 6:55 PM, Blogger JTapp said...

Howie, I agree with you on this one. The family medical leave act is not popular with these corporations, but the benefits to workers greatly outweigh the costs.


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