Posts tagged SCOTUS
Posts tagged SCOTUS
Can we sidewalk counsel people going into urology clinics? Y’know, they might be going in there for a vasectomy and I believe that’s against God’s will. Doesn’t matter they’re seeking perfectly legal medical care — I just feel compelled to compassionately counsel them about how they’re facing eternal damnation because every sperm is sacred.
It’s not like there’s a buffer zone in place or anything…
United States v. Lee (1982), a case in which the U.S. Supreme Court found requiring an Amish employer to withhold and pay Social Security taxes for his workers was constitutional even though “the Amish faith prohibited participation in governmental support programs.”
Justice Samuel Alito brushed the precedent of Lee aside by dismissing it as a case that did not concern the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, but only the Free Exercise clause, so therefore the Court need not consider it. The implication is that pre-RFRA precedent doesn’t matter. And that’s a frightening departure from precedent.
Too bad I was born a woman instead of a corporation :(
A piece I wrote in March about Hobby Lobby and the contraceptive mandate is featured on xoJane today. Check it out!
"Your boss doesn’t get to dictate what you do with your paycheck, whether it’s buying groceries, donating it all to orphans, or splurging it on hookers and blow.
Your boss might take issue with you buying pork because he’s Jewish, donating it to orphans because she thinks they’re godless, or on the hookers and blow because that’s not very Christian of you. However, your bosses would be ridiculed for thinking they have the right to tail you to make sure you’re spending YOUR money in accordance with their faith, right? There’s not much difference here. Set aside that the insurance is not directly offered by Hobby Lobby, or that they could pay taxes/penalties instead of lawyers and legal fees by kicking everyone onto the exchange, thereby taking away their supposed moral conundrum. Spoiler alert: HEALTH BENEFITS ARE COMPENSATION FOR YOUR LABOR. Why would you think for one second that your boss gets to dictate what you do with your compensation?”
And boom goes the dynamite…
Time to fight fire with fire.
The Supreme Court unanimously struck down Massachusetts’ abortion buffer zone law on Thursday, ruling in favor of anti-choice protesters who argued that being required to stay 35 feet away from clinic entrances is a violation of their freedom of speech. The decision rolls back a proactive policy intended to safeguard women’s access to reproductive health care in the face of persistent harassment and intimidation from abortion opponents.
NO. JUST NO.
Birth control when they want to invest, abortion when they want to deny access to women.
Never mind that their health plan covered said objectionable contraceptives until 2012, when they chose to file suit against the Affordable Care Act….
First off, just stop. Your boss doesn’t get to dictate what you do with your paycheck, whether it’s buying groceries, donating it all to orphans, or splurging it on hookers and blow.
Your boss might take issue with you buying pork because he’s Jewish, donating it to orphans because she thinks they’re godless, or on the hookers and blow because that’s not very Christian of you. However, your bosses would be ridiculed for thinking they have the right to tail you to make sure you’re spending YOUR money in accordance with their faith, right? There’s not much difference here. Set aside that the insurance is not directly offered by Hobby Lobby, or that they could pay taxes/penalties instead of lawyers and legal fees by kicking everyone onto the exchange, thereby taking away their supposed moral conundrum. Spoiler alert: HEALTH BENEFITS ARE COMPENSATION FOR YOUR LABOR. Why would you think for one second that your boss gets to dictate what you do with your compensation?
Second, I want you to try a thought experiment. Let’s say the owner of a for-profit business is a devout Muslim. It is forbidden in the Muslim faith to consume pork. You’ve gone to the doctor for pneumonia, and your doc gives you antibiotics. Unfortunately, many medicines in gel capsules contain gelatin, which is usually derived from animal protein. Due to fears about mad cow, it’s more common for it to be derived from pigs. Your boss claims to have the right to bar you from taking that antibiotic because your health plan is paid for in part by the company, so therefore your boss gets to dictate the company’s (their) religious belief trumps your doc’s opinion because the for-profit company is an extension of their faith. Can you imagine the pearl-clutching if Muslim business owners told these good Christians (or anyone else, for that matter) that they could not have potentially lifesaving medicine because of the owner’s beliefs? Richard Dawkins might stroke out from rage. Fox News might never recover. Michele Bachmann would require a fainting couch for the resulting vapors.
How about if it’s medicine in a gelatin capsule for high blood pressure, depression, or even erectile dysfunction medication? How about if your devout Catholic boss would only cover erectile dysfunction for married men because premarital sex is a sin, and ONLY if said medication was used with no contraception and in pursuit of conception because sex is only for procreation and every sperm is sacred? Or dictating no treatment for HIV or AIDS because only “sinners” get it and their god says no dice?
Or what if your boss says no insulin because it was derived from animal protein long ago or no Heparin to treat a blood clot because it still contains animal tissue, and their vegatarianism is a deeply-held belief too, isn’t that kinda sorta like religion, please Justice Scalia?
I cannot wrap my head around Hobby Lobby’s view that medical treatment is their business because said treatment might maybe have something to do with their employees doing the sex on their time away from work — y’know, their private lives. Not all contraceptives and reproductive health visits are for preventing maybe babies — hormonal contraceptives have a myraid of uses beyond preventing conception. The only time the sex lives of Hobby Lobby employees is their business is if employees are boning on the clock — THEN Hobby Lobby has every right to say “No sex time ‘til break time, please.” They can’t say, “No sex time ‘til ring time, please. Because Jesus.”
Working for a for-profit employer in the U.S. does not mean you must also swallow their religious dictates hook, line, and sinker. To claim otherwise in the name of religious freedom is a complete fallacy and wholly offensive to the very idea of religious freedom itself.
And Scalia’s dissent IS full of quotable bitter lemons.
However, as allies for queer and trans* communities, and people of color, our work is not done. There’s the recently-overturned crucial aspects to the Voting Rights Act. And DOMA doesn’t address inequalities faced every day by queer and trans* people.
So yes, let’s celebrate, but let’s not forget queer youth fighting for a place to stay, trans* people fighting to keep their jobs, or people of color fighting to keep their right to vote.
The Pledge of Allegiance still ends, in my opinion, with: “…and liberty and justice for SOME.” So as we celebrate DOMA today, remember, there’s much more work to be done tomorrow.
After today’s debacle of striking down Section IV of the 1965 Voting Rights Act, I’m nervous. I’m almost sure Scalia’s wetting his pants with glee over getting to release a dissent like his “legendary” dissent in Lawrence v. Texas (2003).
Fox News Radio’s Todd Starnes and American Family Radio’s Sandy Rios displaying a jaw-dropping lack of awareness when discussing marriage equality.
I nearly choked on my goddamn coffee when I heard this fuckery come out of their mouths. Let’s just hit the basic point: EVERY bill passed for marriage equality has a religious exemption. Period.
And clergy have every right to refuse to marry anyone. Don’t believe me? Go to a Catholic priest, demand he marry you and your significant other on the spot, and mention that neither of you is Catholic, but he just HAS to do it. Hint: He won’t.
P.S. — If you want to uphold “traditional, Biblical” definitions of marriage and think it’s one man and one woman, you clearly didn’t read that book closely.
I just can’t with some people…