Vail Daily letter: Health care wrinkle
Vail, CO, Colorado
“Takaful” is commonly referred to as “Islamic insurance” and is perceived as cooperative insurance, where members contribute a certain sum of money to a common pool, the purpose of which is not to generate profits for stockholders of the insurer but to insure the contributing members of the pool only and to subsidize those Muslims that are unable to financially participate.
On the other hand, the American-style insurer issues policies to its insureds and distributes the spread between the actuarial experience and gross policy return as profits for its investors.
Muslims consider the American insurance industry as incompatible with Islam’s belief system, since it generates profits for investors based upon the misfortune of others, and is more akin to gambling. In this, they may be right. They believe that the provisions of the recently enacted health care bill contravenes the admonitions of the Qur’an.
Congress and the president of the United States artfully and surreptitiously inserted a provision in the health care bill that allows Muslims and/or their employers to exempt out of the mandatory provisions of the bill requiring the purchase of insurance by simply establishing that religious affiliation to the IRS, and in turn procuring a certificate of exemption.
Congress has mandated that this provision applies to resident Muslims of Colorado, along with Muslims of other states pursuant to the provisions of of the US Constitution and its 14th Amendment. The net result of all of this is that by federal law, the health care bill only applies to Christians, Jews and other infidels of Colorado, and not to the adherents of Islam or other sects eschewing American-style insurance.
In view of this Islamic preference, one would naturally question the constitutionality of the health care act, both federal and state. Does not the exemption provision under the act show a bent toward establishing Islam as a state religion? Under the 1st Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, it is proscribed that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion … .” The Constitution of the state of Colorado is even more patent regarding the preference of one religion over another. Article II, Sec. 4, provides in part that “The free exercise and enjoyment of religious profession and worship, without discrimination, shall forever hereafter be guaranteed. … Nor shall any preference be given by law to any religious denomination or mode of worship.”
It would therefore appear that a religious preference has been fomented in the health care act in favor of one religion (Islam) over the more historic denominations of the Judeo-Christian genre, which also harkens back to the comments made by the president of the United State to the effect that “America is not a Christian nation” or that “Islam has always been a part of the American story”!
Contrary to the president’s views in the matter, the United States is, de facto, a Judeo-Christian nation, and Islam has only played a memorable role since Sept. 11, 2001.
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights …” (Thomas Jefferson in the Declaration of Independence, circa 1776).
Further proof of this Judeo-Christian heritage is found under the 14th Amendment to the US Constitution in that no state shall “deprive any person of life, liberty or property without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws. …”
Under Article II, Section 1, of the Colorado Constitution, it is provided in part that “all government, of right, … is instituted solely for the good of the whole.” The words “equal” and “whole” connote all of the people, without exception or preference toward some or a few.
And the term “Creator” is unqualified to mean whomever you believe your God to be!
In parting, it would be fitting that Messrs. Polis, Bennett and Ritter petition all courts of competent jurisdiction in Colorado to redress the inequities, the inequalities and the unconstitutionalities of the federal health care act as it applies to Colorado residents, both Muslims and infidels.
It would also seem appropriate that those of the Islamic persuasion renounce their entitlement to an exempt or privileged status under the act, and join with all Colorado residents as simply American citizens, no less and no more.