Author Topic: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby  (Read 5233 times)

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Online Chino

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The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« on: July 01, 2014, 08:02:51 AM »
I am wondering where the line is drawn for this, so I am going to throw out a hypothetical scenario. Let's say the owners of Hobby Lobby suddenly decide to start believing that it is the will of God for people to be sick or die, and therefore claim that all medications are against God's will. Could they now legally refuse to provide coverage because medicines violate their religious beliefs?

Offline KevShmev

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #1 on: July 01, 2014, 08:07:34 AM »
Why not discuss the actual issue, rather than create a strawmen with outrageous hypotheticals than will never happen.

Online Chino

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #2 on: July 01, 2014, 08:15:31 AM »
Do you mean the issue that the religion of the boss can now dictate what laws apply to their employees, and the fact that five members of the conservative majority voted that the religious beliefs (or lack of) of employees can be trumped by the religious beliefs of their boss?

And I don't understand what was wrong with my OP. If owners of companies, like the ones at Hobby Lobby, suddenly declared that they were against all forms of medicine due to religious beliefs, could they refuse to provide their employees coverage for it?

Offline El Barto

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #3 on: July 01, 2014, 08:16:54 AM »
Why not discuss the actual issue, rather than create a strawmen with outrageous hypotheticals than will never happen.
He wasn't using a strawman to refute an argument. He asked plainly in his first sentence how far this could go and provided an extreme hypothetical. Not sure why there'd be a problem with that.

I haven't read the decision (got a couple of others I'm more interested in), but my understanding is that they actually crafted this quite narrowly. The gays are actually considering this a victory since the the ruling suggests that the nonsense going on in Kansas won't fly in accordance with yesterday's decision. It seems that Alito specified that you can't use what they did yesterday to skirt around specific laws, failing to provide insurance at all would likely fit that bill.

And to appease Kev, the decision itself. I'm fairly torn on this decision. I'm inclined to agree that the government shouldn't be imposing on a person's religion. The problem here is that I don't think religion really had jack shit to do with bringing this case. It was first and foremost a political maneuver to circumvent Obamacare in whatever way they could, and second their rationale was mostly based on ignorance and hate rather than legitimate religious beliefs.
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Offline KevShmev

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #4 on: July 01, 2014, 08:20:19 AM »
I, too, am torn on the decision.  I think laying the smackdown on Obamacare was a primary goal, for sure, but giving too much power to employers in regards to gray areas is definitely a concern.  However, leaving religion out of it for a minute, should your employees always pay for your birth control?  As a man, should I expect my employer to provide me with condoms?  I mean, that's a safety issue as well, right, since condoms can protect against various STDs and whatnot.  Just asking.

Offline MoraWintersoul

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #5 on: July 01, 2014, 08:24:23 AM »
The problem here is that I don't think religion really had jack shit to do with bringing this case. It was first and foremost a political maneuver to circumvent Obamacare in whatever way they could, and second their rationale was mostly based on ignorance and hate rather than legitimate religious beliefs.
And how convenient that their first testing ground is contraception.

I think we (or at least, Americans) should remember well both the names on the people of the left and the people on the right of this picture:

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Offline El Barto

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #6 on: July 01, 2014, 08:41:49 AM »
The problem here is that I don't think religion really had jack shit to do with bringing this case. It was first and foremost a political maneuver to circumvent Obamacare in whatever way they could, and second their rationale was mostly based on ignorance and hate rather than legitimate religious beliefs.
And how convenient that their first testing ground is contraception.

I think we (or at least, Americans) should remember well both the names on the people of the left and the people on the right of this picture:

In all fairness, the two in the middle can actually be fairly reasonable. I think a couple of these guys were actually deciding based on the realities of law rather than personal opinion. I also think the opposite applies to some of the minority. Like I said, this really wasn't about "fuck women and fuck their birth control!" There's a lot more to it than that.


Kev: I think condoms are a different matter. For one thing they're relatively cheap. More importantly, there are medical aspects to the lady's side of birth control aside from, well, birth control. IUDs, which were one of the things specifically referred to in this case, are actually a medical procedure. The pill is essentially hormone therapy.

More to the point, I don't think that the point was that businesses should be forced to provide birth control. They should, as the law states, be forced to provide insurance. Also, I suspect most business still will. For one thing it just makes good business sense, and for another most companies aren't run by fanatical Christian assholes.
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Online Chino

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #7 on: July 01, 2014, 09:24:00 AM »
I, too, am torn on the decision.  I think laying the smackdown on Obamacare was a primary goal, for sure, but giving too much power to employers in regards to gray areas is definitely a concern.  However, leaving religion out of it for a minute, should your employees always pay for your birth control?  As a man, should I expect my employer to provide me with condoms?  I mean, that's a safety issue as well, right, since condoms can protect against various STDs and whatnot.  Just asking.

Well condoms have no purpose other than preventing pregnancies. Many female contraceptives actually have other medical uses (mainly balancing hormones I think). However, as a man, if you still worked at Hobby Lobby, you would still be entitled to Viagra and vasectomies. I don't think it's any coincidence that the pills they went after are for abortions (which is actually not at all the case). 

Offline KevShmev

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #8 on: July 01, 2014, 09:26:29 AM »
Uh, what?  I am pretty sure condoms protect against STDs (although they are not 100%), so they are not just for preventing pregnancies.

And I am aware of the other medical uses of the pill, for example.  A girlfriend of mine a few years ago took the pill, which prevented cysts from growing on her ovaries, so I am aware.

Offline hefdaddy42

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #9 on: July 01, 2014, 09:35:35 AM »
They are a corporation, not a sole proprietorship.  They should have to abide by the same laws that all other corporations do.  I don't see why the religious beliefs of the "owners" should have anything to do with it.

And I don't care how narrowly they tried to frame the decision.  They gave a corporation a way out, and it's only a matter of time before another one wants a way out on a different topic.

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Offline El Barto

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #10 on: July 01, 2014, 09:44:29 AM »
They are a corporation, not a sole proprietorship.  They should have to abide by the same laws that all other corporations do.  I don't see why the religious beliefs of the "owners" should have anything to do with it.

And I don't care how narrowly they tried to frame the decision.  They gave a corporation a way out, and it's only a matter of time before another one wants a way out on a different topic.
Well, setting aside the whole personhood problem, they're a corporation where a small handful of fanatical Christian assholes make up 51% of the shareholders. I believe that the decision was crafted to only apply to such situations (though with this court that's actually somewhat peculiar). And since corporations tend to be more antisocial than religious-fundamentalist, I still think that this isn't going to be a big issue. What you'll see are handpicked business recruited for the sole purpose of undermining healthcare for political reasons. The bigger ones will still be monetarily motivated to provide adequate  bennies.
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Offline Dark Castle

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #11 on: July 01, 2014, 12:13:11 PM »


Reading Hobby Lobby's post on facebook and the ensuing comments yesterday went pretty much like "What, you're not Christian, and you expect your workplace to not impose their religion and religious beliefs on you? You can just go find another job or deal with it!"


Offline yeshaberto

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #12 on: July 01, 2014, 12:51:42 PM »
help me understand why the issue is not our freedom in regard to choosing our insurance.

Offline El Barto

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #13 on: July 01, 2014, 01:19:05 PM »
help me understand why the issue is not our freedom in regard to choosing our insurance.
Federal law says that employers the size of Hobby Lobby have to provide health insurance and that insurance is supposed to include contraception (Obamacare). Hobby Lobby's majority shareholders are fundamentalist Christian assholes (and ignorant, to boot) who claim that being forced to provide contraception and abortion drugs to their employees is in violation of their beliefs (which is essentially correct, aside from the abortion nonsense). The court, in deciding this, has ruled that the religious beliefs of a corporation trump federal law (Obamacare) which has quite a few people nervous.

The trickle down effect, which is what also relates to the freedom problem, is that a couple of states are run by even more asshollish Christian fundamentalists and are passing laws to protect employers from other federal laws. Most noteworthy is Kansas which wants to prevent Christians from having to hire gay employees under the religious freedom point, which I suspect is fantastically contrary to the Equal Employment Opportunity Act.
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Offline yeshaberto

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #14 on: July 01, 2014, 01:32:21 PM »
thanks.
I am still confused, though, how those who trumpet freedom are okay with a federal law that says a company has to provide Obamacare (as opposed to an alternate insurance, or maybe even none at all).

Offline El Barto

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #15 on: July 01, 2014, 01:42:49 PM »
thanks.
I am still confused, though, how those who trumpet freedom are okay with a federal law that says a company has to provide Obamacare (as opposed to an alternate insurance, or maybe even none at all).
As I said, I'm somewhat torn on the matter, myself. What I will say is that for the most part this country has accepted the fact that relgious beliefs don't let you off the hook insofar as the law goes. As I stated elsewhere:

Quote from: Me in another forum
You can't let your kid die of influenza because you think it's God's will. You can't fuck your daughter or marry your mother because you're a Mormon. You can't blow up a women's clinic because you're a Southern Baptist. You can't drink 4 bottles of Nyquil and run naked through Whole Foods and say you were communing with The Goddess. Blowing yourself up in a crowded place tends to be against the law, as well. In this case the law is allowing discrimination justified by religious freedom, and since discrimination is typically illegal I have no doubt this law will be shot down (numerous times).

The one exception I can think of if Indians and shrooms/peyote. Honestly, who wants to tell those guys they can't trip balls after what we did to them.
At this point, I'm honestly not sure where things stand.
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Online Chino

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #16 on: July 01, 2014, 01:53:43 PM »
thanks.
I am still confused, though, how those who trumpet freedom are okay with a federal law that says a company has to provide Obamacare (as opposed to an alternate insurance, or maybe even none at all).

Many people are not okay with that, but that's a separate issue that could definitely have its own discussion. People are upset at the fact that the supreme court, the elites in government who are suppose to represent the people, sided with a corporation. In this case it just happens to be religion based, and while I think Hobby Lobby provided a perfectly acceptable argument, the result was complete bullshit. I guarantee if the owners of Hobby Lobby were Muslim, this would have never even been brought to the floor.

Offline KevShmev

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #17 on: July 01, 2014, 02:00:25 PM »
But that is pure speculation and you don't know that.

And let's face it: the elites in government rarely represent the people, regardless of what political affiliation they are.

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #18 on: July 01, 2014, 02:32:32 PM »
I guarantee if the owners of Hobby Lobby were Muslim, this would have never even been brought to the floor.
I wouldn't guarantee it, but I suspect it very much.
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Offline El Barto

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #19 on: July 01, 2014, 04:13:48 PM »
I'd say it's a couple of elites siding with corporations. A couple of elites siding with the people. A couple of elites siding with the law.

As for the Moslem scenario, it still would have gotten there because it would still be an acceptable weapon against obamacare, which is what this was all about, after all. Once it got there, it would have been decided the same way. Kennedy is the swing vote here, and he's not an ideologue.
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Offline MoraWintersoul

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #20 on: July 01, 2014, 04:56:20 PM »
Yeah, I'm aware this is about more than just "fuck contraception"; for starters, if the main Democratic edge over the Reps are women and minorities (or maybe they haven't informed me well about that?), it makes sense that their weapons against Obamacare are gonna lean that way. But I wouldn't be surprised if the decision was partially informed by neglect or by being totally unaware that the pill has other vital uses.

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Offline lordxizor

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #21 on: July 01, 2014, 08:53:48 PM »
Semi-serious question... I am anti-war be cause of my religious beliefs. Based on this ruling, should I be able to not pay income taxes that would go to funding wars?

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #22 on: July 01, 2014, 09:08:34 PM »
Semi-serious question... I am anti-war be cause of my religious beliefs. Based on this ruling, should I be able to not pay income taxes that would go to funding wars?

IF your religious beliefs are Christian (only stating this because it is still the majority in the country under discussion) I would think that Jesus commanding his followers to pay their taxes would trump the personal idea of objecting to what it's used for.
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Offline El Barto

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #23 on: July 01, 2014, 09:15:44 PM »
Semi-serious question... I am anti-war be cause of my religious beliefs. Based on this ruling, should I be able to not pay income taxes that would go to funding wars?
Or for that matter, how 'bout birth control which your tax dollars actually subsidize?

Regardless, that wont work. There's been some lobbying since '72 for a peace tax fund which would facilitate Conscientious Objection to Military Taxation. For patently obvious reasons it gets nowhere, but still comes up every time some knucklehead invades another nation. When the law that is the precursor to the Hobby Lobby decision came up, the religious freedom restoration act, people filed suit to have that applied to military taxation, and two smaller courts and the supreme court told them to fuck off.

So essentially, yes they can force you to give them money to squander on cruise missiles to kill American citizens with. Rather interesting when you think of it that way.
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Offline El Barto

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #24 on: July 01, 2014, 09:22:15 PM »
Semi-serious question... I am anti-war be cause of my religious beliefs. Based on this ruling, should I be able to not pay income taxes that would go to funding wars?

IF your religious beliefs are Christian (only stating this because it is still the majority in the country under discussion) I would think that Jesus commanding his followers to pay their taxes would trump the personal idea of objecting to what it's used for.
Well, if you're going to bring that guy into the equation, shouldn't the Gospel of Matthew suggest that the Hobby Lobby assholes have no valid standing and should shut the fuck up about it?
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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #25 on: July 01, 2014, 09:24:46 PM »
Well....yes, actually. But then again, I was never under the impression that anything they were doing was "christian" based. (small case intentional)
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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #26 on: July 02, 2014, 10:32:36 AM »
I, too, am torn on the decision.  I think laying the smackdown on Obamacare was a primary goal, for sure, but giving too much power to employers in regards to gray areas is definitely a concern.  However, leaving religion out of it for a minute, should your employees always pay for your birth control?  As a man, should I expect my employer to provide me with condoms?  I mean, that's a safety issue as well, right, since condoms can protect against various STDs and whatnot.  Just asking.







I'm not sure how I feel about the decision, but apparently Hobby Lobby's 401(k) is invested in funds that own shares in a few different abortion/contraception medications.




I don't recall any outrage over that.
 


Edit:  Yep, I'm right. 

Offline lordxizor

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #27 on: July 02, 2014, 10:41:35 AM »
I'm not sure how I feel about the decision, but apparently Hobby Lobby's 401(k) is invested in funds that own shares in a few different abortion/contraception medications.




I don't recall any outrage over that.
 


Edit:  Yep, I'm right. 

Not to mention Hobby Lobby gets a large portion if it's products from China which is a human rights nightmare and basically the abortion capital of the world.

Offline MoraWintersoul

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #28 on: July 02, 2014, 10:52:34 AM »
Jesus.

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #29 on: July 02, 2014, 10:56:58 AM »
Selective Religiosity

Offline Scheavo

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #30 on: July 02, 2014, 11:24:33 AM »
I think they also were paying for the pill, on their own, until the ACA mandated it.

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Offline theseoafs

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #32 on: July 03, 2014, 06:58:00 PM »
I haven't read the decision (got a couple of others I'm more interested in), but my understanding is that they actually crafted this quite narrowly. The gays are actually considering this a victory since the the ruling suggests that the nonsense going on in Kansas won't fly in accordance with yesterday's decision. It seems that Alito specified that you can't use what they did yesterday to skirt around specific laws, failing to provide insurance at all would likely fit that bill.

I guess the question is what is so special about contraception that makes this particular issue totally off-limits?  Nobody agrees with every single thing the government does.  The example of the army is a good one, and if you ask me some of the stuff the US armed forces have done in the past decade has been so much worse than whatever it is that birth control pills have done over the same time period.  I don't get to opt out of that, or out of funding anything else I might not like.  That's how taxes work -- they sometimes go to things you don't like.  What is so special about the contraception requirement that was infringing on Hobby Lobby's rights soooo much?

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #33 on: July 03, 2014, 09:48:27 PM »
Apparently they're not satisfied yet.  :\

http://m.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2014/07/post-hobby-lobby-a-plea-for-religious-accommodation/373853/
Wait, they want exemption from an order not to discriminate?

What I got from this letter:
 - Hogwash about how "great" America's wide views are
 - Hogwash about how "bad" discrimination is
 - Not restricting hiring to LGBT "will come at an unreasonable cost to the common good, national unity and religious freedom"
 - Unreasonable pre-judgement: "Our identity as individuals is based first and foremost in our faith"
 - Religious beliefs are what "motivate [people] to serve their neighbors in the first place"
 - Religious beliefs instill values that determine who is hired
 - Anti-separation of church/state: "government and religious organizations have worked together to better serve the nation"
 - "An executive order that does not include a religious exemption will significantly and substantively hamper the work of some religious organizations" as they will "lose financial funding that allows them to serve others in the national interest due to their organizational identity"
 - Apparently religious institutions are needed for the common good.
 - Complaining that we need to respect the opinions of the backasswards homophobes
 - Claims that staff of some institutions are required to share some beliefs. Now, there is a difference between not sharing a belief and being an LGBT member, no?
 - Attempt to touch Obama on a personal levelthat'sby what citing  she his said '08 views
 - If we can't discriminate then our religion will suffer and then America will suffer!

Despicable.
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Offline lordxizor

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Re: The Supreme Court and Hobby Lobby
« Reply #34 on: July 04, 2014, 07:05:28 AM »
This order only applies to government contractors. I sincerely hope that Obama stands up to this and tells them that if they want to discriminate against LGBT people, they will no longer be able to bid on government contracts.