Hobby Lobby for the win. Hobby Lobby female employees…for the lose.

This morning, Hobby Lobby won their case against the Supreme Court regarding birth control coverage through the ACA, For those who haven’t read my previous post on the subject, or who haven’t followed this story in the news, Hobby Lobby, a for-profit and privately held corporation owned by a family of evangelical Christians, sued the Department of Health and Human Services in September 2012 because it believed that the contraception requirement of the Affordable Care Act was an unconstitutional violation of its sincerely held religious beliefs. While I’m certain no one has contested  the religious beliefs held by Hobby Lobby founder and CEO David Green and his family, but the Greens are not on the hook to provide their 13,000 full-time employees with contraceptive coverage. In reality, their privately held corporation is responsible for that coverage. Because that’s what it means to be incorporated. One of the questions brought before the high court is whether or not the company itself can have sincerely held religious beliefs, and — if the court is willing to recognize corporate religion — whether the contraception mandate places an “undue burden” on those beliefs.

Hobby Lobby has based its claim in its religious opposition to abortion; according to lawyers for the company, the main issue here is four forms of birth control that it doesn’t want to cover because it believes they are abortion-inducing drugs. This is incorrect!Hobby Lobby already covered 16 of the 20 methods of contraception mandated under the Affordable Care Act, but it didn’t cover Plan B One-Step, ella (another brand of emergency contraception) and two forms of intrauterine devices because of aforementioned ideologically driven and not medically based ideas about abortion.“These medications are there to prevent or delay ovulation,” Dr. Petra Casey, an obstetrician-gynecologist at the Mayo Clinic, stated  in an article on the science behind emergency contraception. “They don’t act after fertilization.” As noted in that article, which first appeared in the New York Times,  emergency contraception like Plan B, ella and the hormonal IUD do not work by preventing fertilized eggs from implanting in the womb. Instead, these methods of birth control delay ovulation 0r thicken cervical mucus to prevent sperm from reaching the egg, meaning that fertilization never even occurs. That said, when used as a form of emergency contraception, the copper IUD can interrupt implantation, but this still does not mean a pregnancy has occurred. Thus even the “logic” of Hobby Lobby (the people behind it, excuse me) Is unfounded & flawed.

I respect Hobby Lobby being a “Christian run” company. I think its great that they are closed on Sundays and some of the other small things they have infused into their company. I understand SLIGHTLY where they are coming from BUT …it is incredible UN-Christian in my opinion to not provide for your employees health, or ability to have more family than one can care for…Unless Hobby Lobby plans to have a kick ass daycare, extra money to those with families, bonuses for additional children, etc then their views on family have no place being pushed onto employees. Its one thing to decide YOUR PLACE OF BUSINESS should be closed Sundays because the Bible says that is the day of rest (I think that’s great & I suppotr that). Its entirely different to say that because the Bible says “go forth & multiply” that you’ve made the executive order that no employee shall have means to choose not birth control options. I could say this affects women more than men, which it does, but Hobby Lobby employed men should be equally offended at essentially having their right to decide the size of their family stripped from them by their employer.

That said, any amount of research can reveal some inconsistencies in HL’s “morals.’ Hobby Lobby has a retirement plan that invests very heavily in the manufacturers of the forms of contraception it claims to abhor so much. According to a report from Molly Redden at Mother Jones, the Hobby Lobby 401(k) “held more than $73 million in mutual funds with investments in companies that produce emergency contraceptive pills, intrauterine devices, and drugs commonly used in abortions.” I myself HAVE a hormonal IUD. I know several other ladies who are Christians that have IUDs (side note not all denominations specially denounce birth control) They are wonderful. God gave me the children I wanted. He also gave me the tools i needed to not have more so that I could care for the ones I have (just my opinion)

I myself say NO…as I hope all people agree. A corporation is an entity. It is not a person. It does not have feelings. I’m a Christian, I believe in birth control. I also believe God gives us the ability to choose that. Furthermore, I do not believe the Bible says to go make and disciples of your company. God cares about relationships with people and corporations aren’t them, no matter what legal mumbo jumbo one wants to use to argue the point. However I’m not trying to make this blog piece about religion, mine or yours or anyone’s. The main issue here, I feel, is that the Supreme Court in voting YES to this decision has created a slippery slope in which ANY company can pick & choose coverage that they have a “moral objection” to. Not oly that, but this creates a mask for corporations to hide behind whether they have moral objections or not – I can see companies trying to save a couple corporate earned dollars by citing “moral objections” left and right. Thank you Supreme Court for your complete inability to see the big picture.

 

Again it is my personal belief that this is less about morals and more about money. Unfortunately, my fear-and I can realistically see his happening- is that other corporations will follow. As Justice Sonia Sotomeyer stated in her objection  “If corporations could claim a religious objection to providing contraception coverage couldn’t they also object to vaccinations or blood transfusions?”  There are a number of other medical treatments that are not considered legitimate under certain religious doctrine, what is to stop corporations from objecting to covering those as well? We are entering a scary territory where corporations could essentially pick apart the things in the ACA which they “object” to. Again, follow the money not the morals and you can see where this is going to go…this isnt about morals, this is right wing hijacking of the ACA. Theres other powers behind this than just HL> If HL felt that strongly about this one issue they could simply have chosen not to offer coverage & told employees to seek it through the exchange.

In her dissent Ginsburg stated. :”Reading the Act expansively, as the court does, raises a host of “Me, too” questions. Can an employer in business for profit opt out of coverage for blood transfusions, vaccinations, antidepressants, or medications derived from pigs, based on the employer’s sincerely held religious beliefs opposing those medical practices?”  No. At least…not yet.

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#NotAllMen

I will start with some personal stories, I like stories. I have 2 brothers (no sisters) , a son, a stepson (no daughters), 2 brother in laws on my husbands (no sisters for him) side.. I”m also married to a man. I like men. I feel I understand a lot ab the male side of our population having been surrounded by them my entire life. I also understand women’s issue, having been one my entire life. I consider myself a moderate on a lot of issues. But I do have an understanding that misogyny, rape culture, unequal pay, sexual harassment, sexual assault etc primary targets women. I don’t blame men for the creation of these things in society because frankly women keep them in place as well.

The media is full of sound bytes & news clips with little discussion. I find however that messages about women & stereotypes, gender issues tend to blow up before getting blown away. The recent story about the kidnapped girls in Nigeria spawned the hashtag trend #BringBackOurGirls, because people with a worldview will understand that hate towards some women is hate against all women. I’m not using an us/them dichotomy here though. This is not about women versus men but an underlying feeling among many  (mixed) populations that women aren’t deserving of education, rights etc. It is important in these instances to stand up to this,  especially when the world is watching. People need to understand how the girls in Nigeria, the targeting of women in the Rodgers shooting rampage,  etc connects to a larger issue. These could be viewed as disconnected isolated events, but to think that doesn’t look at the bigger picture. These events are but examples of that bigger picture.

In another example the recent hashtag trend #YesAllWomen spawned similar dissent among people – not all of whom were men- who deny the existence of misogyny, rape culture etc. These things make people uncomfortable,I get that. And it should. Being uncomfortable shouldn’t be a reason not to address issues & try to solve or change them. I don’t want, to derail the female centered topic & focus on potential hurt feelings by men though. I’m sorry but there is a bigger issue that needs to be the focus. I feel the need to explain some things further, relating to these issues, in hopefully understandable non-offensive terms though.

I recently had a (male) friend rant on Facebook that he’s tired of female friends posting stuff that make all men out to be “evil” “rapists” & how he gets “all men are evil b/c they are rapists or want to pay you less.’ That right there is the problem:  when people get uncomfortable they tend to  stop listening and get defensive. No need to get defensive. How about helping?  Even if a “woman’s issue” that doesn’t directly affect you, surely it will affect your mother, sister, daughter, friends. Don’t be dismissive. Understand that if YOU aren’t a rapist, a predator, etc that those types of postings aren’t about you, but they should offend you that men out there CAN be those things. Denying & attributing to some “other”  in society doesn’t help eradicate the problem.

The reason a lot of these types of stories are attributed to misogyny is because simply that IS whats at the root of them. Of course not all men are women haters. Misogyny exists in society & is built up over time and takes a lot of people to hold in place. But it exists here nonetheless.  The success and popularity of the Tea Party being one  example….but there are many more, including people in the media & politics that regularly spout off in this vein:  Rush Limbaugh. Ted Cruz, Paul Ryan,  Michelle Bachmann (yes a woman).  Of course not all men are rapists, etc, but while its important to acknowledge this its important not to get sidetracked on it. Women already know this. Men already know this. We live in a society that while there are movements and laws against rape, there are also a lot more places that feed it to us in ways that desensitize society to it: video games, movies, music, public places, private citizens views…a bar in Spokane, Washington  thought it humorous to create a drink called “Date Grape.’ When there was protest, the bar owner (a man) stated it was “just a joke” –and also refused to change the name. He then began a campaign of harassment against the protest organizer (a woman). While that’s his right to name drinks whatever he wants, the humor he find in rape & those supporting it, is a shining example of what I mean. (My personal opinion is that its in beyond poor taste considering how often acquaintance rape occurs in college settings & tends to involve alcohol..but don’t let me go on a tangent)

On that note, let me give you an example of what I mean, in better terms. When college guys go out, whoop it up, get fall down drunk, people (PEOPLE) think nothing of it other than writing them off as “boys will be boys” “typical Frat guys” etc. Guys can go out and sh*t faced and not worry that a woman will see them as prey, and frankly I doubt this concern ever crosses a guys mind (I’m just assuming though). When a guy walks out of his house without a shirt or with pants sagging to his knees, no one thinks a thing of it. (Other than maybe “pull up your pants whippersnapper”) If a guy got mugged or beaten up, its doubtful anyone would say “well look at how he was dressed” “what did he expect, dressing THAT way?” Whereas when a woman goes out, if she were to get assaulted those things often times become center stage: “what was she thinking acting THAT WAY…dressing THAT WAY…” If you disagree I’m sorry but this is a huge part of the reason so many rape victims don’t press charges, b/c more often than not, stuff like that are some of defense attorneys central questions on the stand or in opening arguments. Its also the way many people think…boys will be boys versus women who shouldn’t  behave ‘that’ way.  Again, this is a societal thing, not a men versus women attitude, that does permeate our culture. Think of it: if men can freely dress how they choose, act how they choose…why is not okay for a woman to do the same? If a man can act ‘that way’ why cant a woman? Why IS it “asking for it” in these circumstances? That right there, is the clearest example I can give of what I am referring to.  There are silent beliefs that people often don’t think of because too often they are silently agreed upon by society. Dont agree. Dont help hold these in place.  #ThisTakesEverybody