Valley residents speak out on high court decision

FRESNO, Calif.

Members of the Central Valley Strategic Forum are angry. They're calling it a "dark day" for religious freedom. On the other hand, those in the legal community say it's a landmark case and a victory for the law.

Whether you agree or disagree, the Supreme Court ruling is final. Some aspects of this law are already being implemented. While the law can be changed in congress, some are hoping the entire law will be repealed.

When he's not working with the Central Valley Strategic Forum, Don wright owns a local insurance business. He and other community members joined forces in Fresno to discuss how the new affordable health care law affects their faith, business, and perspective.

"This is a government takeover of 18% of the economy," said Wright, "All plans of insurance will include contraceptives and abortion drugs with no co-pay or deductible, and will pay for abortions as well. A direct contradiction to the Catholic Church."

Wright and others say the historic decision is both a surprise, and disappointment. They believe their religious rights are being stripped.

"Its not a partisan issue, it's not a Democrat or Republican issue. This is a matter of freedom. Of liberty," said Jonathan Keller with Central Valley Strategic Forum.

Retired Federal Judge Oliver Wanger says no matter your opinion, the court has spoken. While complicated, the new act is a victory for the law. "You have a Republican, conservative Supreme Court Chief Justice upholding this law, his personal feelings may not be that at all but he's following the law."

Wanger called it a significant case -- one that is controversial and drives opinion. "Something else that's noteworthy about this decision is that nowhere in that decision does the court say this is a good law or bad law, I agree or disagree. That's the proper respect for the branches of government."

Members of the healthcare community were not at all surprised by the high court's decision. Tim Joslin with Community Medical Centers says its all about economics. "The economics are driving healthcare change. We as a country recognize we have to develop a more efficient system that's quality driven that works for everybody."

He also said that no matter what, businesses and hospitals will adapt and everyone will get the care they need.

As for the Central Valley Strategic Forum, they say they'll continue to follow the issue.

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