Saturday, July 12, 2014

166.6 - Supreme Court ignores own ruling to benefit anti-contraceptive crowd

Supreme Court ignores own ruling to benefit anti-contraceptive crowd

One last thing to talk about very quickly because while you may well have heard this, it's important enough to mention anyway. It's about the Hobby Lobby case. I'll have more to say about it another day, because I want to address the related issue of corporate personhood. But this is about something else.

In the Hobby Lobby case, the court said that requiring the company to include contraceptive care in its health coverage was a "substantial burden" on the religious beliefs of its owners, even if the company did not have to pay for that part of the coverage.

(As a sidebar, let me note that 10 years ago I was warning that the opposition to abortion was not just about abortion; that was just the starting point. Ultimately, it was about the whole idea of birth control. As the current cases increasingly conflate abortion and contraception, we are seeing that coming to pass. Now back to our story.)

To prove that it was not the “least restrictive alternative” to achieving the goal of contraceptive coverage, the majority cited the accommodation available to religiously-oriented non-profits, which can simply file a form stating a religious objection to contraceptive coverage and so be relieved of paying for it, with the insurance companies picking up the tab.

That, Sam Alito wrote, “achieves all of the government’s aims while providing greater respect for religious liberty.”

But just days later, on July 3, in an unsigned order, a majority of the court granted a temporary emergency injunction to Wheaton College, an evangelical Protestant liberal arts college in Illinois, allowing it to refuse to comply with the very accommodation the court had just held up as the answer in the Hobby Lobby case.

What Wheaton College argues that simply filling out the form is akin to providing abortions because it triggers a process by which women will obtain contraceptive care - and while this is an injunction, not a final decision, it does give reason to think the majority will agree with that bizarre stretch of I can't call it logic.

The foul five's ignoring of precedent, their intent to simply remake Constitutional law in their own right-wing image has gotten so bad, so marked, that even precedents just three days old can be ignored if it serves their ends.

It really has gone beyond disgusting.

Sources cited in links:

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