For almost a year now, we have been engaged in a lively and vigorous debate over health care reform and what form it should take. Now that H.R. 3590 and the reconciliation bill have both been signed into law, the talk has shifted to what the two pieces of legislation actually contain and what the consequences will be for all of America. I have to be honest, I have not read all of either of the bills, but I have browsed through them. I find them overly complicated and hard to read and understand, but I suppose that is to be expected, since they came from Congress.
This post is prompted by an email I received last night entitled “Dhimmitude” and it has given me cause to do even more research on the health care legislation that is now law. It claims that H.R. 3590 is going to be used by Muslims to initiate Dhimmitude, so let’s look at what that is.
Dhimmitude: the Islamic system of governing populations conquered by jihad wars, encompassing all of the demographic, ethnic, and religious aspects of the political system.
Even before H.R. 3590 was law, some of the discussion was centered around the religious exemption that was included, specifically for the Amish people. The email I received touched on that same thing and declares that Muslims are also exempt, because of their belief that any form of insurance is a type of gambling. I have spent several hours, both this morning and throughout the day, reading through more of the legislation and researching the theory that Muslims will be exempt from the health care mandate. At this time, I can find no reason to believe that rumor has any basis in fact.
The reason the Amish people are being exempted is the way they conduct themselves and their relationship to the rest of their community. It can not be denied that the Amish community is unlike any other religious community in America. If an Amish person requires a doctor or hospital visit, their church takes up a collection to pay for the resulting medical bills. From what I can understand, H.R. 3590 specifically addresses that concern with this section, taken directly from the text of the bill.
‘‘(2) RELIGIOUS EXEMPTIONS.—
‘‘(A) RELIGIOUS CONSCIENCE EXEMPTION.—Such term shall not include any individual for any month if such individual has in effect an exemption under section 1311(d)(4)
(H) of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act which certifies that such individual is a member of a recognized religious sect or division thereof described in section 1402(g)(1) and an adherent of established tenets or teachings of such sect or division as described in such section.
‘‘(B) HEALTH CARE SHARING MINISTRY.—
‘‘(i) IN GENERAL.—Such term shall not include any individual for any month if such individual is a member of a health care sharing ministry for the month.
‘‘(ii) HEALTH CARE SHARING MINISTRY.—The term ‘health care sharing ministry’ means an organization—
‘‘(I) which is described in section 501(c)(3) and is exempt from taxation under section 501(a),
‘‘(II) members of which share a common set of ethical or religious beliefs and share medical expenses among members in accordance with those beliefs and without regard to the State in which a member resides or is employed,
‘‘(III) members of which retain membership even after they develop a medical condition, ”
(IV) which (or a predecessor of which) has been in existence at all times since December 31, 1999, and medical expenses of its members have been shared continuously and without interruption since at least December 31, 1999, and
‘‘(V) which conducts an annual audit which is performed by an independent certified public accounting firm in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles and which is made available to the public upon request.
Over the course of this debate, many accusations have been made against the legislation in question. Some of those accusations have been valid and some have not. To be honest, I had not heard of Dhimmitude until I received the email, but I was amazed at how many websites came up during a Google search, claiming that H.R. 3590 would be the beginning of Dhimmitude in America. Again, I find no basis for that rumor in anything I have read in the legislation.
This is not to say that I am in favor of H.R. 3590, as there are a multitude of reasons to be concerned, but there is no need to add fuel to the fire that doesn’t even exist. I have alluded to that more than once and it still holds true. We need to challenge this legislation and the mandate on Constitutional grounds and not with rumor and innuendo. By the same token, radical Islam needs to be countered with real facts and not some Internet rumor that they are about to initiate Dhimmitude in America, using H.R. 3590 as their instrument of choice. Just because websites abound, declaring Muslims are exempt from the health care mandate because of their religious belief that insurance is a form of gambling, doesn’t make it the truth. Once again, I find no exemption for them anywhere in the legislation. I don’t know how much plainer I can make it that the Amish religious exemption in no way applies to Muslims or any other religious group. In other words, the Amish situation is unique.
By the way, the email that I mentioned, the one that prompted this post? It has now gone the way of all other spam email I get, into the trash bin, where it belongs. If you receive one, you should do the same. If you have already received it and have forwarded it to your friends and family, shame on you. Instead of adding rumors to the fire, let’s try debating this issue with facts.