Following Barack Obama’s selection of Rabbi David Saperstein to fill a vacancy as the U.S. ambassador-at-large for religious freedom, news outlets across the nation publicized the fact that he is set to be the first non-Christian to hold the position.
An arguably more relevant – and less promoted – consequence relates to his definition of the concept he was chosen to defend. Although he was instrumental in the passage of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, he is a vocal opponent of the Supreme Court’s citation of that law in a recent high-profile ruling.
While the high court found that closely held corporations should not be forced to provide employees with drugs certain faiths believe are tantamount to murder, Saperstein disagrees.
“We believe the court was wrong in saying there are religious claims corporations can make. Corporations do not have souls or consciences the way that people or associations of like-minded people do.”
Saperstein is adamant that the owners of Hobby Lobby – and other companies with a similar executive structure – should be forced to violate their deeply held religious beliefs based on laws that did not exist when they went into business.
Providing further insight into his position on this issue is the fact that he has served on the board of several far-left organizations, including People For the American Way. Such alliances might also explain Obama’s interest in Saperstein to fill a position that has been vacant for nearly a year.
Photo Credit: Facebook/Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism