Megapastor Rick Warren is always preaching loudly about some crusade or another, but it looks like this time he picked the wrong issue to take a stand on. He's come out swinging against Obama's contraception mandate, even though it offers exemptions for religious institutions. The only problem? His church, which is based in California, has been following the same mandate on a state level for some time. So he's about 13 years late to the outrage game.
A few days ago, Warren tweeted this gem:
I'd go to jail rather than cave in to a govement mandate that violates what God commands us to do. Would you? Acts 5:29.
Wow, he distrusts the government so much he refuses to do it the honor of even spelling it correctly. Yep, Warren is so anti-government that he... offered the invocation during Obama's inauguration? That's hardcore. Anyway, offering to do jail time is a pretty bold move. He must really be committed to the cause.
Except, as the Daily Kos helpfully points out, he hasn't really done enough research on said cause. If he had, he'd know that a contraception mandate has been the law in California since 1999. And the California mandate, like the federal one, exempts churches from having to provide birth control for their employees. In fact, that law is one of the ones Obama's new federal mandate is based on.
So, by that accounting, he should already have gone to jail in 1999, since his church presumably "caved" back then. Though, in his defense, his Twitter bio says, "I live in the State of Grace," and maybe the birth control laws are different in the State of Grace.
But assuming he is still governed by the laws of California, he might want to rescind his offer of jail time, since the California mandate was already challenged by the Catholic Church and was upheld 6-1 by the State Supreme Court. Sorry, Rick, looks like you lost this round—though you do have one option remaining: lead your entire congregation on a hunger strike. Oh, wait, you're already kind of doing that.
Rick Warren, please report to jail [Daily Kos]