Culture Politics

Awaiting Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby ruling, public favors contraception mandate

Deodonne Bhattarai of Washington, D.C., who is 7 1/2 months pregnant, demonstrated in front of the Supreme Court, which heard cases of two businesses challenging the contraception mandate of the Affordable Care Act on March 25, 2014. RNS photo by Adelle M. Banks
Deodonne Bhattarai of Washington, D.C., who is 7 1/2 months pregnant, demonstrated in front of the Supreme Court, which heard cases of two businesses challenging the contraception mandate of the Affordable Care Act on Tuesday (March 25). RNS photo by Adelle M. Banks

Deodonne Bhattarai of Washington, D.C., who is 7 1/2 months pregnant, demonstrated in front of the Supreme Court, which heard cases of two businesses challenging the contraception mandate of the Affordable Care Act on March 25, 2014. RNS photo by Adelle M. Banks

WASHINGTON (RNS) The U.S. Supreme Court is expected to finally issue its ruling this week in the highly anticipated case of the craft companies vs. Obamacare.

Technically,  it’s Sebelius v. Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood Specialties, a showdown over the Affordable Care Act’s contraception coverage mandate. The core legal question is whether a private company can have religious rights.

But to the general public, this is seen as a showdown between employers — the evangelical Green family behind Hobby Lobby and the Mennonite Hahn family that owns the Conestoga cabinet company — and the employees’ personal reproductive choices under their insurance.

While conservatives have cast the battle as one for religious freedom, the general public may see it as a showdown over personal health choices.

Public opinion polls zeroed in on the ABC words: abortion and birth control: Must employers offer insurance coverage for contraceptive services they consider to be abortifacient (blocking a fertilized egg from implanting in the womb) if they have sincere religious objection to abortion?

And the polls consistently find most Americans support the mandate, even when business owners object on religious grounds.

The Kaiser Health Tracking Poll, released in April, found “the public supports the requirement by a nearly 2-to-1 margin (61 percent support, 32 percent oppose).

Kaiser also asked specifically about requiring coverage in the Hobby Lobby scenario: Should a for-profit business owner with religious objections to birth control be subject to the requirement? Again, a majority (55 percent) said yes, they should, “even if it violates their owners’ personal religious beliefs.”

Even so, 40 percent of respondents said for-profit companies should not be required to offer this insurance coverage “even if it means their female employees will have to pay the cost of birth control themselves.”

In February 2012, when furor over the mandate first ignited, the findings were similar. A survey by the Public Religion Research Institute at the time found that 55 percent of Americans agreed “employers should be required to provide their employees with health care plans that cover contraception and birth control at no cost.”

Response divided by religious lines and by gender. Favoring the requirement:

  • 62 percent of women, but only 47 percent of men
  • 61 percent of people with no religious identity
  • 50 percent of white mainline Protestants
  • 58 percent of Catholics
  • 38 percent of evangelical Protestants

Earlier this month, when PRRI revisited this issue, it found no statistically significant shifts in views.

Americans’ views on the mandate may be shaped by their opinions on contraception. Gallup looked into this in May 2012, and found 89 percent of all Americans, including 82 percent of Catholics, say “birth control is morally acceptable.”

Supporters pray outside the Supreme Court as they support businesses challenging the contraception mandate of the Affordable Care Act on Tuesday (March 25). In the foreground far right, the Rev. Frank Pavone of Priests for Life, left, and the Rev. Patrick Mahoney, right, kneel in prayer during a vigil. RNS photo by Adelle M. Banks

Supporters pray outside the Supreme Court as they support businesses challenging the contraception mandate of the Affordable Care Act on March 25, 2014. In the foreground far right, the Rev. Frank Pavone of Priests for Life, left, and the Rev. Patrick Mahoney, right, kneel in prayer during a vigil. RNS photo by Adelle M. Banks

It’s also popular. A May 2013 fact sheet from the Guttmacher Institute, which studies reproductive health and rights issues, found:

  • More than 99 percent of women aged 15–44  who have ever had sexual intercourse have used at least one contraceptive method.
  • Some 62 percent of all women of reproductive age are currently using a contraceptive method.

Hobby Lobby already covers all the most popularly used methods of birth control in its health plan, including pills and barrier methods such as condoms and sterilization (more than 90 percent of the methods most used by Americans, according to Guttmacher) that work by preventing conception.

Where the evangelical owners drew the line was at covering devices such as IUDs or medications such as Plan B that can work by blocking implantation of a fertilized egg in the uterus, thus preventing a successful pregnancy.

But many in the public are aware that a decision that favors Hobby Lobby would affect Catholic business owners who follow their church’s teaching against artificial birth control that prevents conception as well.


About the author

Cathy Lynn Grossman

Cathy Lynn Grossman specializes in stories drawn from research and statistics on religion, spirituality and ethics. She also writes frequently on biomedical ethics and end-of-life-issues


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  • I dont get evandelicals,religious buisness owners and republicans..they dont seem to like providing conctraceptives for women but dont mind insurance coverage for mens Labido products(viagra and tje sort)…seems like double standards always rules against the woman In the caveman thinking of the rightwing evangelical world

  • As Jonhathon Merrit (the Week Magazine) pointed out, how can Hobby Lobby owners,the Greens. Say they are christains running a buisness with christain standards and morals when the items they sell in their stores are from China,where the goverement controlled abortions happen to woman daily without theirapproval of wanting one ? Atleast a woman still has a choice to do what she wants with her body here,unless the evangelicals get their way on that front too…..where is all the Patriotic Republican outrage at Hobby Lobby not selling american Made Products??? Lol

  • Nor do they want to help the child after it is born: no healthcare, no daycare, no education, no school lunch…

  • Judas, why doesn’t insurance companies pay for condoms? After all wouldn’t that be equal rights

  • Republicans are expertly executing an epic bait-and-switch: get people all hot and bothered about emotional issues so they vote Republican, while cynically pursuing their make-me-rich-quick schemes at the expense of those very same voters. What else is new?

  • They should pay for condoms…..why not? If it helps protect against unwanted births and disease, which would save taxpayer money in healthcare on both fronts if they were used properly,lol…….

  • If evangelical leaders and church members would quit using their belirfs and the Bible to control the womans body,to control the Word ‘marriage’as if jesus really cared who married, and quit using the church as a background to help the NRA….PEOPLE WOULD TAKE RELIGION A LITTLE MORE SERIOUS

  • This country was founded on the belief that people could choose whatever religious belief as long as it does not harm others. So, what if they don’t want to cover certain things because of their beliefs? It’s their right, they are not harming anyone. If someone wants emergency contraception or an abortion– they can pay for it themselves. Forcing someone to go against their religion– for someone’s convenience no less, is against the constitution. It’s bad news as soon as you let the government have power over your ability to practice your religion. They are not forcing people to not have an abortion and such– they are merely not wanting to fund it. Even that said, outside of religion, people believe it’s morally wrong. I, myself, am not religious and believe it to be something that is morally wrong unless the mother’s physical life is at steak. That’s just one college educated woman’s opinion though.

  • Nobody is stopping the HobbyLobby owners from practising their religion, but when you own a for profit company and try and use beliefs ,religious or otherwise ,as a wedge against contraception, whats next?….some owner does not believe in wearing white shoes after Labor day,well then lets get rid of white shoes altogether so it does not go against the owners beliefs…lol…or certain religious people dont celebrate birthdays or national holidays….well we cant have that….,lets stop all national holdays because it interferes with a religious owners beliefs….the ramifications can go on and on if you let every buisness owner use beliefs to Run a Company

  • This is about more than birth control, its about the employees of any particular company having to abide by that companies beliefs. It’s not about denying them their beliefs its about keeping us free from theirs. You support this and companies can deny anything based on their religous affilitation. Say for example, denying benefits to cohabitation, out of wedlock children, and don’t even think about the mormons and their views on blacks. We would become like Syria and Hobby Lobby is the Taliban, they are the Muslim Brotherhood.

  • They AREharming people. Their employees. Somehow you seem to ignore that Hobby Lobby is forcing its employees to abide by the religious views of its owners. Steve Green is treating them as his personal property.

    Health benefits are compensation for work, it is not a gift from the employers. The workers ARE paying for the contraception in their health benefits. The employer has no more right to how it is used than they do in telling people how to spend their paycheck.

    Btw the whole idea of devaluing contraception as “convenience” is a load of crap. You are saying that your opinion on such matters overrules any notion of personal privacy. As if people have to subject their lives for your approval. How very narcissistic of you.

  • Which is why the big business lobbies which wrote many amicus briefs for Citizens United are silent here. They know the idea of corporate religion is a joke and it undermines the very nature of corporate existence.

  • You are a college-educated woman who believes that contraception is morally wrong unless the woman’s life is at STEAK?

    Did you go to a Christian culinary school?

  • Hobby lobby does believe in birth control and also believes in abortion. They have a store in China and also sell Chinese goods. If they really believed they would’nt sell Chinese stuff in their stores. The one thing that cuts through their beliefs is their love of money. What hypocrites these people have became. They are taking our constitutional rights away. Shame on hobby lobby.

  • Condoms do not require a prescription, do not cost very much either. Contraception like IUDs, implants which are the 2 best methods are incredibly expensive and require doctor insertion. Very different from buy it off the shelf condoms.

  • Contraception is “convenience”? No, it’s being responsible, preventing an unintended pregnancy which lessens abortion rates. You pro-fetus worshippers are very contrary, you want zero abortions and yet find fault with contraception.

  • Incorporating a business brings into existence an entity separate from shareholders. Such incorporation erects a wall that protects shareholders. If the corporation faces liability or files for bankruptcy, the assets of shareholders cannot be touched by claimants, who are protected by that wall. I’ve never heard of a shareholder in any company complain about that wall.

    But walls separate in two directions. If it’s true that claimants cannot reach through the wall to get at the assets of shareholders, then it’s equally true that shareholders’ beliefs and values cannot reach through that wall from the other side to get at the corporation and its employees.

    The shareholders of these two corporations want it both ways. They, I presume, would adamantly insist on the protection provided their assets from a very robust, non-porous wall. Yet they want it to be very porous from the other direction.

    Incoherence results if the Court gives them what they want. If the Court wants to echo Reagan and say ‘tear down that wall,’ that’s one thing. But if the Court says we’ll tear down the wall from one side, but leaving it standing from the other side, that’s quite another thing altogether.

  • Nor do they want the child to be free to think for itself
    after it is born.
    It must become another robot for god.

  • This is like polling Rome on public orgies when the barbarians were at the gates.

  • Yes they do. No matter how much you would-be fascists try to outlaw religion, there is truly no justifiable reason why religious beliefs should be separated from any other facet of life.
    You guys have an Immoral Majority and nothing else. You have no good arguments, you’ve just convinced 51% of the nation to love their cheap, dirty sins above all else.
    You guys are aborting the West out of existence and you’re too depraved and stupid to care.

  • You guys are fundamentalist secularists and you think if you repeat the lie enough that religious belief should be forced into the private realm it will become true, but that isn’t so.
    The Christian religion built this country and you and all the other secularists, with your perverted habits and love of sin above all else, are destroying it in two generations flat.

  • There is absolutely no proof whatsoever that condoms reduce abortions. Where condoms are most prevalent, the abortion rate is the highest because it convinces children that they can corrupt themselves and live a life of disgusting sexual sin and still be happy.
    You guys deny science, which shows that those who regularly attend church and fight their desires to be depraved sex addicts are far healthier than sex-addict secularists.
    You guys worship your own sins and misery loves company. There’s nothing more profound than that going on here. You want to corrupt as many children as possible so you’re not all alone and condemned for your sexual sin.

  • It’s not hilarious. It’s sad that he thinks he’s being sophisticated by worshiping sexual perversion.

  • You should move to North Korea. Christians built the United States, so you’re going to want to move to a pure atheistic utopia like North Korea you SHMUCK!
    Contraception greatly increases the risk of cancer and is scientifically proven to make women depressed. You think of women as sexual objects, so I’m sure you don’t care about polluting their bodies as long as they continue to be corrupted by the perverts who run this country.
    You guys are so blinded by evil that you feel intelligent as you degrade and destroy your bodies over cheap perversions.

  • Either Hobby Lobby forces its employees to abide by religious morals or their employees force Hobby Lobby to abide by perverted secularist immorality.
    You guys always pretend that it’s only Christians trying to force a lifestyle on people, when pervert secularists are far more likely to try to force their perversions on Christians.
    You guys are miserable because you worship sin and you can’t stand to see Christians proving every day that live can be lived happily without sin. You don’t want to be exposed as the slaves of sin that you are.

  • The world will be a much better place if Christians “force” morality on it than if they continue to let depraved secularists force their disgusting perversions on the Christian West.

  • It would be a lot better that the child is a follower of God than a robot for Satan like you want to make them into.

  • You just keep repeating the lie despite the fact that all the evidence points to condom use raising AIDs and STD rates because it gives the false sense of invulnerability to gullible secularists who have been corrupted by the state so they’re easier to control.

  • My my,such language for a christain? You say christianity built this country? If i recall when so called christains came over from europe they massacred the native Indians here and then continued to burn women at the stake all for their Morals and values religion……and i dont worship the female body,i worship the male body,im a gay sinner….lol

  • I dont deny science….its religious extremists like yourself that deny science and throw judgement on all those that dont swallow your lies that you seem to say come from the Almighty

  • If christains”force” morality?? In the news a christain DJ from a christain radio station arrested in michigan on child porn charges….i guess thats in line with your earlier statement that church going people that dont give into sexual desires makes them live happier more “morally” valued lives??? turns them into perverts that hide behind the cloth….not to say all religious people are like that but there seems to be a trend

  • If you insist on understanding this mandate in terms of “health care”, you have to prohibit birth control, because it is specifically intended to prevent a healthy human’s body from functioning as it manifestly is intended (by God, by nature, by evolution, who cares?) to function. The purpose of Viagra is to restore proper function to a body which is clearly not healthy, at least in that regard.

    Of course, you think this is a “Labido” (you mean “libido”, right?) issue. Sorry, this is supposed to be some kind of health care mandate, not a government-funded “facilitates sex” mandate.

  • Im pretty sure the Father.the Son and the Holy Ghost could care less about a woman using contraception though you would like to belive he does…..and im sure the Father.the Son and The Holy Ghost could care less about who marrys who, but he is probaly keeping names of the faithful that use his so called word (bible) to spread false gospel and judge others

  • Why do you have to lie so obviously?

    There is nothing more gullible than the people pushing “abstinence only” as the sole form of family planning education. That has shown to be 0% effective in the prevention of youth/unwanted pregnancies/prevention of STD’s.

    Only a religious person can stand so vociferously behind a policy so ineffective. It comes from having strong beliefs without a shred of evidence to support them.

  • Because you don’t want children to think for themselves or make moral decisions. Just defer their actions and thoughts to the nearest authority figure. Nothing bad has ever happened from that, right?

  • Family planning is healthcare. Just because you want to deny the effects pregnancy has on a woman’s body, doesn’t make such things non-existent.

    According to your criteria, any kind of medical care would be bad because God intended us to die from treatable conditions. This is why nobody ever evaluates healthcare on the basis of “what God intended”.

    Of course the most important thing is, a person’s libido is none of your business. What people do in their personal lives is not for your approval or opinion. Your desire for people not to engage in sex is not something anyone else has to take seriously. But the remark shows the level of narcissism involved with Fundamentalist Christianity. They feel they have a right and duty to stick their noses into the private affairs of others because “God told them to”.

  • Christians are the most amoral/immoral people I know. They excuse all sorts of wicked, horrific acts by claiming it is God’s will. The most relativistic dishonest people out there when it comes to morality. They defer all moral decisions to the authority of others, so they avoid making any.

    “let depraved secularists force their disgusting perversions on the Christian West”

    Like democracy, civil liberties, religious freedom, morality based on humanistic standards. You just hate all of that.

  • “The Christian religion built this country ”

    …therefore Christians deserve greater privileges and authority from our government and laws over everyone else, who should kiss your behind. That is what you are saying. Too bad its just fictions being peddled by people who defecate over the ideals and laws of our nation.

    The great thing about freedom of religion is I never have to give a flying fig what you think is sin or what you think God wants.

  • Not natural people. Not individuals. They have speech rights but religion is only for natural people, individuals. Religion has no rational connection to the basic operations or a corporation.

    Corporate speech btw is advertising, marketing, press statements, internal memos. They have political positions as well since certain laws or government policies may directly impact a corporation’s operations or bottom line. But religion, that can’t possibly be imputed to a corporation without some major mendacity. It always involves attacking the primary purpose of incorporation: insulating ownership from the personal liabilities of business operations.

  • Well said Jim Englert!

    Someone who understands incorporation and the “corporate veil” and the implication of HL’s shenanigans.

  • So you are uneducated as well as nasty-minded as well. Good to know.

    Those barbarians were CHRISTIANS!!!!!
    So were the Romans!!!!!

  • Okay, everybody, step away from the keyboard.
    Name calling, shrieking in CAPS, and beating up on each other’s general intelligence is not welcome in RNS comments.
    Take it outside, please.
    In the future, please remember: You are all welcome to your point of view. State it and then let go and let others — even those with whom you disagree — have their say.

  • Hobby Lobby already has coercive power over the employees and can look out for its own interests. The employees must rely on rule of law to protect themselves from the abuses and liberties taken by their employers.

    Evidently being a Christian means you have to be as uncivil and disrespectful to others as possible. To be vain and arrogant to the point where you feel the need to make decisions for everyone else. To give offense wherever possible but object when it is returned. To treat other people as your personal property.

    There is nothing of value to your brand of Christianity. You are welcomed to it. Religious freedom means I never have to give a crap.

  • Except its 99% rate of preventing pregnancy.
    What is the success rate of abstinence only family planning education? 0%

  • The companies we work for should pay us $25 per hour minimum, they should pay for child care for those employees who have children, they should pay for our continuing education so we can climb the corporate ladder, they should pay for our transportation costs to and from work each day, they should also pay for our lunch while we are at work and a massage after work for the stress they put us through. Gimme, gimme, gimme!

  • McDonald’s, Home Depot, GE, Coke, etc. they all have a company code of “beliefs and values” that they expect their employees to abide by. Failure to follow those corporate values can result in termination.

  • The evangelicals and republican right have forgotten one of the human traits endowed to the creators greatest achievement–Human Kind!

    Humans were created with free will to do good or evil as they themselves determined. So why do we need to legislate morality as one or more groups see it. By legislating away “free will” we suppress the god given right to think for ourselves and decide our own fate. So why get all upset if your neighbour does not believe or practice as you do.

    Please do not argue about tax support being used for “immoral” purposes since our laws are created by a democracy–a meeting of minds, right wing republicans appear too often to anti democracy.

  • And none of those rise to the level of 1st amendment protection like religious belief nor can ever be used to excuse compliance with labor laws and taxes.

    Hobby Lobby is seeking to use their “beliefs as values” to duck out on obligations under the law. The use of religious freedom in this context cheapens and devalues the concept.

  • Conservatives never want to follow rule of law if it is inconvenient or can’t be exploited to their advantage. They lost the fight over ACA already, no they have to defile the concept of religious freedom to try to get another try.

    Hobby Lobby is insulting both the concept of incorporation and religious belief.

  • “Hobby Lobby already covers all the most popularly used methods of birth control in its health plan, including pills and barrier methods such as condoms and sterilization (more than 90 percent of the methods most used by Americans, according to Guttmacher) that work by preventing conception.

    Where the evangelical owners drew the line was at covering devices such as IUDs or medications such as Plan B that can work by blocking implantation of a fertilized egg in the uterus, thus preventing a successful pregnancy.”

    Read the entire article before bashing Hobby Lobby. I see nothing wrong with Hobby Lobby’s case. Take a pill and use condoms. If you don’t like it, don’t work there. Nobody is forcing you to work there, so leave them alone.

  • There is a french definition of a corporation—“a body without a soul.”

    How can a soulless body practice a religion? In the cases you are arguing about the corporation is in always legally separate and apart from the shareholders and directors. They may create ethical guidelines for business but why try to control the sexual expressions of their employee — The question remains How does the constitution apply to the rights of incorporated soul less entities?

  • I am employed by hobby lobby and I love it here I am a truck driver there for im not limited to the employees I get to speak with I talk to a lot of our drivers I talk to people inside the offices and im also able to go out to our many stores I’m not afraid to ask what there opinion on the case is I never have found one employee that does not support the greens for what they are standing for now heres my opinion you wanted to play like a grown up when something happens be a grown up and take your responsibility when you want to take a babys life and its chance in the world its not your choice as a employee thank you hobby lobby and green family for standing strong

  • Guys, you are not addressing the main issue. A corporation is an artificial paper entity, separate from the owners, which the owners form in order to be able to raise money, avoid personal liability, etc. Does a piece of paper have religion and religious rights? The Greens and the Hahn want to have their cake and eat it, too. They want all the advantages of doing business thru an entity separate from themselves, but they want to claim that they are not separate when it suits them.

  • That doesn’t even remotely make sense. A corporation is not its owners. It has no personal will or beliefs. It simply exists to do business. Religion does not factor into such things. Religion is a personal belief, of natural people.

    A corporation can no more have religion than your bank account.

  • The problem being it was never Steve Green’s line to draw.

    It was never his business how health insurance coverage is supposed to be exercised by employees. It was not his right to violate federal laws concerning minimum requirements of insurance policies. He is not the user of the insurance benefits. They are merely a form compensation to employees.

    Evangelical owners were trying to exercise a right they never had. To make decisions affecting their employees and their privacy. Employees are not property of employers. Green had no more business making decisions about contraception coverage than he could as to what medication can be prescribed.

  • @JanS

    Addressing the issue honestly like you do kills the argument for Hobby Lobby, the conservatives against ACA and the religious nutjobs.

    So instead they have to maintain the lie that Hobby Lobby and Steve Green are one in the same and the employees are nothing but Steve’s property.

  • So you want Steve Green to make your personal decisions for you and to violate laws that benefit you to satisfy his ego and political agenda. You have no problem with the company wasting money on a frivolous lawsuit that not only harms their reputation but takes away from the operations of the company.

    ” never have found one employee that does not support the greens”

    Because its not like the Greens hold any kind of coercive power over them. None whatsoever. Amirite? 🙂

  • Why don’t you folks go buy your own birth control and leave everyone, including the government and Hobby Lobby, out of it? What is next, free popcorn at a movie that your employer was forced to pay for because it is your right? Again, leave everything and everyone out of your business. No One is telling you that you can’t have birth control. Put on your big boy and big girl pants and pay for it yourself. Isn’t your freedom to choose birth control or not, enough for you? For some of you the only choice you want to manage on your own is whether to kill the baby that was conceived because you chose not to use birth control in the first place; regardless of whether you had free access to birth control.

    How about this compromise? You make a decision to get FREE BIRTH CONTROL and someone else pays for it? Your FREE CHOICES are: a free hysterectomy or tuba-ligation or a vasectomy. This way, you get to rip off the rest of the tax payers (something you stand for) to pay your bills but you don’t get to kill babies later. Everybody wins. You get to have sex anytime you want and as much as you want. You never have to worry about birth control again and you never have to get an abortion. This is a real CHOICE. What say you?

  • And none of those ‘beliefs and values’ have anything to do with exemption from legal mandate of any kind. They’re more along the lines of ‘We believe our customers are important and are to be treated respectfully by employees and management,’ etc.

    Can you cite a single one of the ‘beliefs and values’ you reference that has even the remotest relevance to current concern?

  • Very on-point as to this being insulting to the concept of religious belief. I don’t know of a single Christian church that would be willing to baptize a corporation! And most any Christian church would baptize any ‘person’ who professes belief. Those churches know that corporations are not ‘persons’ and are not capable of belief.

    I say this as a committed, if not particularly pious, life-long Catholic. I find the notion of corporate belief precisely as you stated, insulting.

  • Exactly, Jan. No one forced the Greens to form a corporation. They did so because they found it to their benefit to do so. But now, instead of doing cost/benefit analysis, they assert that they’ll take the benefits but not pay the costs. It’s really quite that simple, as you stated so well.

  • “According to your criteria, any kind of medical care would be bad…”

    Sorry, what are “my criteria”? What is your definition of “medical care”? Do you know what mine is?

    “This is why nobody ever evaluates healthcare on the basis of “what God intended” ” Care to read back over my post and point out where I defined health care in terms of “what God intended”?

    “Of course the most important thing is, a person’s libido is none of your business.”

    More importantly, a person’s libido is none of the government’s business and not exactly the reason we established a federal form of government.

    “What people do in their personal lives is not for your approval or opinion.” If I have to pay for it, it is.

    “Your desire for people not to engage in sex is not something anyone else has to take seriously.” I certainly wouldn’t take it seriously. That’s why I said nothing like that. Do you project your own prejudices on others much? Don’t bother answering, that was rhetorical. We already know the answer.

    “But the remark shows the level of narcissism involved with Fundamentalist Christianity.” What remark? That was your remark, not mine. Are you a fundamentalist Christian?

    I am a Latin Rite Catholic, not a fundamentalist. We would define medicine as the study and art of restoring, to the degree possible and reasonable to attempt, the physiological integrity of a damaged or diseased human being. It supposes we know what is a “normal” (conforming to a norm) human body, and supposes that we know, or can learn, what treatments can help restore health to someone who is suffering, as mentioned, from damage or disease.

    So cut the crap about “medical care would be bad because God intended us to die from treatable conditions.” The Catholic Church invented medical colleges and hospitals.

  • “success rate of abstinence only family planning education? 0%”

    sources, please?

    In the last 100 years, in the United States, how many people got pregnant who did NOT engage in sexual activity? How many contracted a sexually transmitted disease from not engaging in sexual activity?

    What was the family planning program in place in the United States in 1960? What was the illegitimacy rate? What is the prevailing program today? What’s the illegitimacy rate?

    Have you really thought this through?

  • “Corporate speech btw is advertising, marketing, press statements, internal memos.”

    Yeah, sure wouldn’t want a corporation to have any religiously-based policies against fraud, embezzling, workplace safety, false advertising.

  • Right, there is no help from the celibates after a child is born. Catholic education in the past was nothing but religious brainwashing. Any church school that yet exist should not receive a cent in vouchers or any other way.

    That is a blunt violation of the First Amendment. Sadly, dangerously, our government has been disregarding the First Amendment more and more and more. All three branches are guilty. Both major parties are guilty. Some individuals work and some groups exist for the sole reason of disregarding the First Amendment in all regards.

    If the pious Green family that owns Hobby Lobby wishes to not practice control of births, that is their private business, but they have absolutely no right to force others, especially not the employees of their public business, to comply with their religious beliefs or practices by denying them the rights of the federal mandate of the Affordable Care Act.

    How many kids have the Greens produced? Have any of them ever avoided conception by any means–other than avoiding sex. The Greens are filthy wealthy off the public. Let them mind their own business. It is obvious they are only trying to avoid providing health care as part of the remuneration their employees deserve for their labor. That would put even more dirty money in the Green pockets and purses. Very religious!

  • Augustine Thomas, you deny science. That is typical of religious zealots. Contrary to your totally unsupported invention, condom use in no way raises any disease. It clearly reduces it. It’s hard to tell, as with all religious zealots, if your claim is based on ignorance or if it is a plain lie. One thing is certain, it is an invention attempting to support other inventions.

  • @Joe

    They are. They are trying to use their compensation as employees to do so. Health insurance is not a gift from your employer. It is given in exchange for work rendered.

    Steve Green is saying that his employees must spend their earnings in the way that he deems fit.

    Why don’t Christians stop trying to make decisions for other people and concentrate on their own behavior. Why is “choice” in this case only the choice of an employer. Someone with coercive power over others? Is that good Christian morality? Might makes right? I guess so.

  • A Religious base is an irrelevancy there. There are legal and entirely secular reasons for such policies that are rationally related to and integral the operations of a corporation regardless of ownership.

    There is no possible way a religious belief can even be imputed to a company let alone be considered related to its operations in an integral manner. Nor is it being used here as something independent of its owners.

    When you talk about the alleged religious views of Hobby Lobby, you are talking solely of Steve Green. None of his religious views can be considered integral or necessary to its operations. None of the alleged religious views of the company are independent of Mr. Green. If Green sells his company to Sumitomo Corp, the company does not suddenly become Shinto/Buddhist.

  • “sources, please?”

    The lack of affect on teen pregnancy rate in every state and country where abstinence only is given speaks for itself. For someone whose view is completely independent of facts or support, your request strikes a false note.

    Abstinence only family planning education does not ever translate into actual abstinence. Fact of the matter is, since legalized contraception and abortion, birth rates have declined since 1960 except among the very poor, immigrants and ultra-religious types.

  • You evidently want the government involved in the libido of others since you are fighting a law which gives people the option of contraception. An option which is not at the discretion of employers who want to micromanage the sex lives of their workers.

    The government got involved in contraception as part of health insurance because that is what was lobbied for. It was requested by the people seeking to pass a law reforming healthcare.

    “We would define medicine as the study and art of restoring, to the degree possible and reasonable to attempt, the physiological integrity of a damaged or diseased human being.”

    And pregnancy has no such effect major effect on the physiological integrity of a woman? Really? Your reasoning only works if you consider women to be nothing more than breeders or you ignore any notion of preventive healthcare.

  • @Larry

    No one is dictating how an employee spends their money. My employer does not force me to buy food, I choose to. My employer does not force me to buy birth control, I choose to. The argument has no merit. Anything that is currently not covered by insurance, by your definition, is somehow a defining moment where the employer is telling someone how to spend their money if they want or need to purchase a service. Does insurance cover band-aids?? NO. Does insurance cover neosporin to apply to your wound?? NO. Why not? Because it is insurance and not your personal bank account. It is there to help not do or pay for everything you can imagine. Larry, it is absurd and you know it. It is the government and the supporters et al that are dictating how money is spent by employers, what insurers MUST cover based on their moral compass. Why can’t you see that? Your argument cuts both ways and so the government needs to stay out of our business. Perhaps insurance should cover tattoo’s or the grafting of a 6th toe. Why choose government to intervene in these matters and why keep moving the line at every opportunity?

  • “since you are fighting a law which gives people the option of contraception.” People had the option of contraception without this law. The question is not about allowing people to have it, it’s about how it gets paid for.

    “Your reasoning only works if you consider women to be nothing more than breeders or you ignore any notion of preventive healthcare.” Do you truly think pregnancy is a disease? You have no real notion of the kind of creatures we are or how we’re made.

  • It dont matter what the ProLife evangelist terrorists movement thinks anyhow…people like the Greens are morons that confess to be christain but are nothing but scripture spouting hypocrites that hate Obama because he makes the repubs and conservatives look like the idiots they are…..hobby lobby sells crap from China that made billionaires out iof these so called God Loving persons….Blech….religious vaules has nothing to do with this …its just rightwing anti goverment wieirdos spouting off

  • Wrong!

    What part of “health insurance is compensation for work rendered” do you not understand?

    It is akin to a paycheck. Having a say as to what specific forms of treatment are covered or whether to abide by statutory minimum coverages is not something an employer has any say in. It is not a gift of the employer given on a whim. The company is not paying for contraception. It is merely providing a forum in which it can be obtained. You have been dishonestly framing the issue by failing to acknowledge the nature of employee benefits.

    The employees are the end users. How they chose to exercise their payment in the form of insurance coverage is their private decision. Their privacy is even protected by federal law (HIPAA). An employer has no right to see how healthcare is being spent by employees without some major bureaucratic hurdles to jump.

    “It is the government and the supporters et al that are dictating how money is spent by employers, what insurers MUST cover based on their moral compass. ”

    That is the government’s right. That is how insurance has always works. Minimum coverages are always set by the government. There is no such thing as a libertarian insurance industry. It just would never work. Once the government sets its minimum coverages for insurance policies, they are not negotiable by private parties. The purpose is to ensure that insurance actually does the job of mitigating costs/losses to the public caused by various perils.

    Your argument is ridiculous and incoherent. Insurance is meant to cover things which are usually not minor or prohibitively expensive out of pocket. Many forms of contraception for women are just that. Especially the ones being discussed here. Some require surgical implantation. You are merely showing ignorance of the facts at issue here.

    Most importantly, the fight against the ACA mandate was ALREADY LOST by conservatives in the Supreme Court. You are trying to re-fight something which was already determined to be valid. The only reason for the “religious” exemption is as a “hail mary” play for one last attempt to fight the ACA. Pure politics.

    I am glad you aren’t trying the bullcrap argument about religious beliefs for a corporation. But the problem is bullcrap is all they have left to fight the ACA with. Your arguments already went down in flames a while ago.

  • It’s my understanding that the case is about the “morning after” or “abortion pill”. The company has stated that they are covering regular birth control, but they do not want to be responsible for abortions. It’s sad to think that a woman can’t take control of her body for ONE night and wait til she can get on birth control. Makes my fellow women sound like a bunch of rabbits in heat.

  • Your definition of healthcare is ridiculously self saving and ignores the effects of pregnancy. Nothing more than a post-facto excuse for position based entirely on ignoring women and their health.

    There is nothing rational or remotely sane about an anti contraception stance. Only the arbitrary and capricious nature of religious belief can make it remotely supportable to people.

  • Even sadder to think that you believe people have to subject their personal lives for your approval. It doesn’t matter that you think other women who want such things are dirty shameful sluts. It’s their choices, their bodies, their decisions. Not yours.

    If you don’t want an abortion or morning after pill, don’t get one. Just don’t presume you have a right to speak for others or your opinions have any bearing on what others can do.

  • Of course the public (or the individuals polled anyways) believes that way: Liberals have successfully brainwashed generations of Americans into being “progressively” more liberal and less religious to the point that religious people are now a minority and agnostics and atheists are a majority! They’ve done this through their propaganda in public schools and universities, which teaches that there is no right and wrong, which leads to the rejection of religious faith, which leads to single-parenthood and the breakdown of the family, and then the state.

  • And that’s not to mention their pushing of the anti-religious dogma of evolution upon the children and young people in these public schools and universities, which is *not* based on reproducible experimentation but is just a *theory* dreamed up by a man who didn’t want to embrace the *theory* of intelligent design, and which has become a part of the *faith* of atheism. (It takes personal faith to believe that there is no divinity in existence, despite no evidence of such non-existence. Agnostics are the truly faithless among us, since they don’t know and don’t care.)

  • @ Larry

    Just wondering…how do you like me now? There you have it, The Supreme’s have spoken. The government and you liberals need to stay out of everyone’s pockets, lives and leave our Liberties alone. Remember, a hysterectomy and vasectomy go hand in hand. Get one soon!

  • Augustine….just because someone is athiest that in no way shape or form makes them a Satan worshiper or robot for them. To believe in Satan you must believe in God. Im pretty sure athiest believe neither of that.