Daily Links, July 31: Catholics for freedom, fertility, and the GOP

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Tomorrow is the day that the federal regulations on health insurance policies officially take effect, including the much debated requirement that employers cover contraception in their employee health plans. Religious employers who don't already qualify for an exemption will still have 12 more months to work out the details, but opponents of the law are piling on the rhetoric in honor of the August 1 deadline, calling it an end to religious freedom in America.

So what is religious freedom, anyway? According to Hillary Rodham Clinton, "It’s not just about the right of Roman Catholics to organize a Mass, or Muslims to hold a religious funeral, or Baha’is to meet in each others’ homes for prayer, or Jews to celebrate High Holy Days together – as important as those rituals are. Religious freedom is also about the right of people to think what they want, say what they think, and come together in fellowship without the state looking over their shoulder."

In Los Angeles, a Catholic school is showing how a little creative marketing can turn around enrollment numbers.

A former employee of the Archdiocese of Chicago has found success using church-approved fertility treatments (one that we wrote about in our October 2011 story on Catholics and fertility). A former fertility doctor has also charted a new course in his medical career and moved away from IVF due to his Catholic faith.

And a group of prominent lay Catholics--all former U.S. ambassadors to the Holy See--have begun a new "Catholics for Romney" campaign to rally Catholic support for Mitt in the lead up to November.