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Catholic Bishops have a right to follow their consciences [Letter]

Reader Katrine Tierney writes that the Catholic bishops are preventing women from receiving from free contraceptives and that women have a right to follow their consciences ("Catholic bishops overstep their authority," June 24).

As I understand the bishops' objection to the health care mandate, it involves who pays for the contraceptives. They are not really free. Someone has to pay for them.

Although insurance companies may pay for them upfront, they expect someone else to cover their costs. The Catholic bishops and others who find contraceptives morally objectionable should also have the right to follow their consciences.

We have many freedoms in this country — the right to travel where we want, live where we want, shop where we want. We also understand that we have to pay for many of our choices. If we expect someone else to pay for our choices, are we not infringing on their freedom?

It is true we do not have unlimited freedom. We can not always do what we want to do. We sometimes have to do things we don't want to do. However, the First Amendment to the Constitution guarantees the right of citizens to freely exercise their religious beliefs, and that includes the Catholic Bishops of the United States.

Anne McKnew, Pasadena

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