i am on pins and needles waiting for the SCOTUS birth control decision.
oh, guess i will be filled with rage all day.
i need to find a better article. how the fuck can they stop a jewish company from say not paying for insurance coverage towards car accidents on sunday or christian scientists who don't believe in blood transfusions or whatever religious nonsense prevents people from getting the care they need!?
My big issue with this is that they seem to want to suggest that, in this instance, a corporation takes on the character of the corporate founder. However, Citizens United seemed to be very clear in asserting that a corporation has a unique identity in terms of government recognition. As such, the owner's religious beliefs should have no bearing. But, this seems to be a more narrow and less dangerous ruling than people are making it out to be so far. At least based on the case syllabus and the initial sections.
i feel bad for voting for obama in the primary in 08. Hilary's name is so much harder to pun. that's the true downfall in our political system in the past 6 years.
also we are finding that menstruation is actually harmful to women's bodies in many ways, such as in my case. i ONLY take birth control because it is medically necessary. and i shouldn't have to check with my employer and talk to them about my uterus to get permission.
the ruling is very narrow, but that doesn't make it any less stupid.
The corporations weren't required to provide that birth control, so there was no issue until the PPACA was enacted.
I can easily see the anger that would come with this ruling, but what they're essentially saying is, if you're a small, closely-held corporation run by people with strong religious beliefs that oppose the use of a treatment, then the government should be the one subsidizing that treatment, not the corporation. I'm of the opinion that it should be a "Tough shit, you do business, you do it in a non-religious forum, deal with it" sort of situation, but based on the way the laws are written this ruling makes sense.
so are you saying that before ACA, Hobby Lobby had the right to opt-out of providing birth control as part of health insurance? because they used to. that is what i don't understand.
i also think the corporation argument is bullshit. you became a corporation to keep your personal funds out of it. in my opinion, that means keep your religion out of it too. it's not like the government is asking you to use YOUR PERSONAL FUNDS, it's the corporation's funds. made up of many people who may not believe what you do, like my flaming homosexual friend who is a manager there.
So the analysis by the Court today was that the contraceptive mandate -- even though it serves as a compelling government interest -- is unlawful as applied to (closely held) corporations with religious objections to the mandate because it doesn't use the least restrictive means. The court suggests that government could have picked up the tab for contraceptive coverage itself, or that it could have created an accommodation similar to the one the law already provides for non-profit religious corporations so that the employees could get contraceptive coverage without the employer directly paying for it. Because these other alternatives (theoretically) exist, the government didn't use the least restrictive means to accomplish its goal, and therefore the mandate violates Hobby Lobby's religious freedom as protected by RFRA.
Now there are plenty of flaws in this analysis, and I think the decision was deeply flawed, but the reason the other more extreme examples you brought up wouldn't work as lawful exceptions is because in all of those the government should be able to show a) a compelling interest in not allowing a religious exemption from the law, and b) that is used the least restrictive means possible in achieving the compelling interest. Additionally, the more extreme you get out, the less likely the courts will find that a plaintiff has a religious interest in whatever it is they're trying to do. Now I personally don't think a person can sincerely claim that another person using an IUD under an insurance policy that you provide violates their religious freedom, but that's just one area where my reasoning is very different than the Court's.
well that's the problem too, their argument about IUD's being abortion were wrong. and again, why wasn't this a problem when hobby lobby provided insurance with birth control before ACA? why do they get to be a corporation to protect themselves personally, but bring their personal opinions into the mix?
and the arguments do matter. from what i saw, the court went out of its way to state that transfusions would not be affected. because this has to do with women and babies, all of a sudden religion matters.
what's curious to me is how it is decided that a corporation is ''closely-held'' and that the religious beliefs are ''sincerely-held''.
am i right in thinking, based on this least restrictive means that picking up a birth control prescription will come at the same cost to the user tomorrow as it did yesterday, and that the percentage that was paid by your health insurance is nowpicked up by the government?
also, will premiums for women go down?
Per the IRS, closely held corporations have more than 50% of the value of their outstanding stock owned (directly or indirectly) by 5 or fewer individuals at any time during the last half of the tax year. And yes, some pretty huge corporations (including Hobby Lobby!) qualify as closely-held.
The sincere religious belief question was kind of elided. In cases involving real people, it's easy to establish a record of sincere belief in a trial or motion hearing -- you have the person explain the beliefs, how they came to them, etc. etc. In this new world of corporate personhood, I think it is a far more difficult question to establish what the company's religious beliefs are. The majority opinion even admits that partners in a closely held corporation can and do disagree. But for the purpose the case before it, the Court found that Hobby Lobby's family owners had established a clear record of sincere religious belief that several of the types of covered contraception were akin to abortion.
and i always though the "sincere religious belief" is basically so you can't say "i just created this religion so that i can shoot heroin".
For practical purposes, I think what it means at this point is that the administration has to grant an exemption to any closely-held company that requests one, or it will draft a new policy to provide accommodations. I think the administration could test the limits of this more if it wanted to, but given the significant loss here and the goal of actually getting contraceptive coverage to women, they will try to work something new out rather than inviting a new round of litigation.
Corporate Religious Liberty.
I don't even know how to process that that is....a thing.
4/6: Hookworms, Disappears @ The Rickshaw Stop
4/8: Drive Like Jehu @ The Glass House
4/17: Swans, Angel Olsen
ok, so in further reading, i see that before the ACA, hobby lobby tried to stop providing the drugs they don't agree with. plan B isn't really an abortion from my understanding, it's conception prevention. it's similar to taking a bunch of birth control within a few days of unprotected sex. my understanding of plan B has always been that if you have already conceived, it won't work. that's why you only have a few days to take it. so why are we letting hobby lobby have incorrect beliefs that conflict with actual science?