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Hobby Lobby Ruling


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#1 SteveT

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Posted 01 July 2014 - 10:19 PM

So I'm angry.  I was going to post a summary here, but people either already know or can look it up themselves.  I think the Supreme Court made the wrong call on a lot of levels and this is going to have some very unpleasant consequences.

 

-Up until yesterday, corporations and their owners were completely separate entities from a legal perspective.  When the owners took action (such as paying for health insurance plans), they were acting as agents of the Corporation, not themselves.  Now, not only do corporations share the same religious beliefs as their owners, but owners can claim that laws on corporations are aimed at them personally.  So do we still have the corporate veil or not?  Because I have a feeling that bankers and CEOs aren't going to start going to jail after this ruling.

 

-In the same breath, corporate freedom of religion came into existence and was granted a higher legal standing than freedom of religion for actual humans.  Corporations have stronger rights than women.

 

-It opened the door for companies to contest any law they want on the basis on freedom of religion.  Recall that some branches of conservative Christianity hold that humans can't be the cause of global warming because only God has the power to destroy the world.  Recall that people used religious arguments to support slavery and segregation.  The  Supreme Court opened the door to a big pile of lawsuits.  

 

-Hobby Lobby's obvious hypocrisy in refusing to cover female birth control while being perfectly happy to cover Viagra and vasectomies.

 

-At least one of the contraceptives in question, Plan B, has been determined to prevent conception.  Previously, it was thought to prevent implantation.  Hobby Lobby apparently never got the memo and considers Plan B to be an abortifacient 

 

.  And the Supreme Court went along with it.  In other words, the Supreme Court ruled that religious beliefs are more compelling than science in the court of law.

 

-The ruling wasn't limited to abortifacient 

 

anyway.

 

-The Supreme Court suggested that the government pay for these contraceptives if they want women to have them so bad.  So anyone who pays taxes, which I assume includes the owners of Hobby Lobby, will be paying for them anyway.

 

-Somehow, female-specific health care continues to be considered a special case as far as laws are concerned.

 

-The wording of the ruling gives special status to certain flavors of Christianity when it pointed out that they don't intend for this ruling to mean it's ok to deny vaccines or antidepressants on health plans.

 

And of course, Fox News is framing the opposition to the ruling as slutty women complaining that their employers won't subsidize their whoring around town.  I don't think they see what kind of far-reaching consequences this ruling has (or the full list of reasons why a woman may be on birth control).


Edited by SteveT, 03 July 2014 - 09:45 AM.


#2 wisp

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Posted 01 July 2014 - 11:14 PM

My quality of life from menarche all the way up until I had my hysterectomy was compromised because of a health problem that only got worse as I got older. If I hadn't been able to start taking birth control when I was 19 I would have been almost entirely disabled through most of college and a few years after. This ruling makes me so angry I can actually feel my face getting hot.



#3 Twinrova

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Posted 02 July 2014 - 07:35 AM

So is this super final? Or if there's enough of a backlash can we reverse this decision? I'm not very familiar with this whole process but I'm mad as hell that all of our progress over the years is slowly but surely being undone by right-wing nutjobs who are hell bent on bringing this country back to the dark ages.

Edited by Twinrova, 02 July 2014 - 08:01 AM.


#4 Twinrova

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Posted 02 July 2014 - 07:59 AM

Grr dumb phone.

Edited by Twinrova, 02 July 2014 - 08:01 AM.


#5 Egann

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Posted 02 July 2014 - 11:23 AM

I am amazed at how people make mountains out of mole hills while missing the point.

 

The issue is basically that this was a catch-22. If the court ruled in favor of Hobby Lobby, then women would not get contraceptives covered by their insurance. That's not good, of course, but contraceptives are reasonably affordable.

 

If, however, they had ruled AGAINST Hobby Lobby, think of the consequences. Hobby Lobby's defense was built on a law the House literally passed unanimously in 1993. The Religious Freedom Restoration Act said essentially that religious freedom is important in America and protected religious freedom for things like smoking peyote, which are normally illegal. It's possible to pass laws controlling them, but only through congress.

 

Fast foward to present day. The "law" here mandating employers to provide contraception is actually an executive order which steps on religious freedom. Allowing it to stand would have granted the presidency the right to overturn congressional legislation with an order. And again, the bill in question had unbelievable support and passed in the House unanimously. On paper, only congress and the courts have the authority to modify or overrride it. Agreeing with the mandate says the power behind an executive order is equal in authority to a congressional law and the court may chose one over the other as peers. Congress's power would be increasingly irrelevant, especially considering it's complexity, and law would increasingly get passed through the presidency's cabinet.

 

If that sounds familiar, that's because that's exactly how a dictatorship works, the only difference being that the dictator would be elected every four years and your vote would be drowned out among 300,000,000 others instead of 10,000,000 others in your state. Letter to your congressman? Ha! Even if he read them he couldn't do anything for you.

 

So yeah, it's a shame that some women aren't going to get contraceptives over this, but considering what was actually at stake this was absolutely the correct call. I'm astonished it was 5-4. It should have been 9-0.

 

 

EDIT: I think this is probably because people think of America's political structure as immutable, or nearly so. It isn't. The whole "unconstitutional" thing is a power the courts granted themselves early on, for instance. It is entirely possible to change America's political structure. 


Edited by Egann, 02 July 2014 - 11:34 AM.





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