Sinclair Lewis has been said to write, "When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross."
I've gotten into so many screaming matches online regarding the Hobby Lobby decision that I thought I'd list all my objections here; we could also use a handy reference for the next battle. The more I read this decision, the most objections I have.
Follow me over the orange battle standard, and please add any I haven't thought of in the comments. Oh, and don't forget to take the poll at the end.
Let me start by stating that I am not a lawyer, but my partner is (retired), so I have someone to bounce my legally based arguments against. I think this ruling will not stand (in no particular order):
* It breaks the church/state barrier, which protects ALL religions, and none at all.
* Not only does it break the church/state barrier, it privileges one religion over all others, AND it privileges one flavor of Christianity over all others. And does anyone honestly think that this would have gone to the Supreme Court if HL had been owned by Muslims?
* An employee will now have to pay twice for her prescription - once through the insurance she earned as part of her wages (do you really think insurance companies will lower their premiums over this?), and again out of pocket.
* An employee's insurance policy is part of her total earned wages, not a giveaway by her benevolent employer. It's equivalent to HL's trying to tell its employee that it will not allow her to use her wages to buy a beer after work. Total invasion of privacy and overreach by the employer into an employee's private life.
* In the "clarification" offered by SCOTUS on Tuesday, it's clear that the ruling (Alito's disclaimers to the contrary) that this ruling applies to ALL forms of contraception, not just the four listed in the initial ruling.
* HL's owners religious beliefs are based on their disdain for contraception, not on science. The drugs they objected to as abortifacients are no such thing, and they know it - the facts are readily available. Therefore, SCOTUS has ruled that an employer's willful ignorance trumps his employee's rights.
* This ruling doesn't just affect female employees; it impacts their families as well, More money spent on health care, less money to buy food. Less contraception available, the more unwanted children to birth, feed, clothe, and educate.
* This was a deliberate attack on the ACA by Hobby Lobby, and really has nothing to do with religous beliefs. If it did, HL would have divested its pension funds in pharma companies that produce not only contraceptions, but actual abortion-causing drugs, and would not buy millions of dollars of goods from China, which has draconian forced-abortion and family planning policies.
* Adding the Wheaton College injuction, now employers can not only prevent their employees from using her insurance to purchase a legal drug in consultation with her doctor, she might be prevented from purchasing it AT ALL. So the "just buy it yourself" crowd should be paying attention; their argument, specious at best, is about to be shut down.
* A corporation is a "person" for contracts, and should not be afforded the same rights as citizens. A corporation cannot be "Christian" (nor can a nation; only individuals have a personal relationship with Jesus/God that is the very definition of "Christian"), nor can it have "religous beliefs". This must be clarified for once and for all by legislation to prevent future erosion of citizen rights in favor of corporate "rights".
This concerns ALL Americans who think their private medical decisions should not be audited by their employer. I predict that this will cause a groundswell of support for a single-payer system (I prefer the Canada model) so we can uncouple insurance from employment. The ACA was a good start, but it is being chipped at repeatedly (there is already an exception for religous organizations), and this won't be the last attack on our rights to health care.
I'm hearing new calls for term limits for SCOTUS and other now lifetime-appointed judicial positions. When a Supreme Court justice can show such bias and be so divorced from the reality of everyone else's lives, it imperils the very freedoms that we treasure. I personally would advocate for 25-year terms - long enough to be insulated from changing political whims, but short enough for the justice to be aware that he/she can be held accountable, and short enough that there's a chance a new court might see an issue differently.
I also believe this will start a larger movement to change "corporations are people, my friend" into what it was mean to be - a way for a corporation to enter into contracts and limit liability. If I remember my history correctly, acts like the Boston Tea Party were against the monopoly of the East India Company. The much-referenced Founding Fathers would have been appalled by the Hobby Lobby decision, and so should we all.
[EDIT: as he was proofreading this, my partner suggested I break it down into a couple of diaries, each arguing a different group of points. I welcome comments, and may incorporate them and flesh out my arguments in another diary or two. Wouldn't it be nice if Congress acted swiftly (laugh) to correct this injustice and more diaries weren't necessary?]