Hobby Lobby, Religious Freedom, and Women’s Rights: One Billion-Dollar Corporation’s Brave Struggle for Equality

Last night, I did something stupid. Something I haven’t done for six years, during the 2008 elections, when I used this technique to successfully weed out all the people on my Facebook friends list who harbored gross, homophobic, and racist ideals. However, last night was worse, because as I no longer have friends who make me crazy, instead:

I participated in a Facebook comment battle with two strangers I have never met.

I am 100% sure that even the other people able to read this in real time on Facebook didn’t care about it, so I fully understand that you, dear readers, will probably care even less. However, I am particularly fired up about this issue (read: yesterday’s near-hysterical summary of The Handmaid’s Tale), and therefore, I am okay with subjecting you all to this.

Also: it’s my party and I’ll cry if I want to.

I decided to cannonball right into this hot mess when I came across a friend’s posting of all the different reasons women use birth control (none of which are “to abort unborn babies,” by the way). It was the responses of her friends that inspired me to dive in headfirst, because they amounted to, effectively, “Well, only two of the sixteen options were at issue,” and “Thank God someone is finally speaking up for the business owners in the United States,” both of which are arguments that are completely, willfully illogical and borderline scary, in my opinion.

So, I couldn’t just NOT say anything. Obviously.

I’ve left out the approximately one zillion comments I exchanged with a dude who was arguing for the rights of businesses to run fully unencumbered by the long arm of the law. Because, as a white Christian male, it was easy for him to blind himself to what this really was about, which is not that poor Hobby Lobby finally made it to the top.

He eventually said that he “doesn’t want the government in his business,” after celebrating a SCOTUS decision that sets the scene for the legislation of religious beliefs and the refusal of health care specifically to women. You have to be a mental contortionist to make that logic stick, so good for you, sir. Your powers of denial are impressive.

Now onto the better stuff (names and photos skillfully erased in MS Paint, but you should know this is a woman):
Screen Shot 2014-07-01 at 9.28.36 PM
Screen Shot 2014-07-01 at 10.27.47 PMScreen Shot 2014-07-01 at 10.27.58 PMThere is a ton to unpack here, but suffice to say that the extent to which people cannot see the forest for the trees astounds me. In her responses, this woman fully ignores the fact that people live in different circumstances than she does (i.e. that $20 for birth control every month might not be financially possible for some women), calls birth control “elective abortion” (and then denies it, which I don’t buy, considering the ONLY REASON the morning-after pill is on trial here is that people believe it has abortive powers), all while reveling in the fact that now her birth control is free (BECAUSE OF THE AFFORDABLE CARE ACT – you know, the terrible, socialist health care reform that is causing Big Business so many sleepless nights). Oh, and then she says that birth control is not a basic medical necessity that saves lives, which is just the best, considering this.

She went on to say, in a portion of this thread I had already bowed out of, that she was happy to see a corporation standing up for something moral, in a world when all businesses seem to care about is money and politics.

Which is. Just. No.

To say something like that is to totally ignore the fact that attempts to deny women contraception have been politicized since before the advent of hormonal birth control. To say something like that is to forget that Hobby Lobby is now immune to any fines they would have incurred by refusing to cover medical care specific to women.

This is not a moral issue , unless you are morally opposed to legislating away the rights of fifty percent of the population in the country in which you live. Then, yeah, sure. It’s morally reprehensible.

There is no way to see this decision as anything but a victory of people who hope to refuse rights to women. Full stop.


4 thoughts on “Hobby Lobby, Religious Freedom, and Women’s Rights: One Billion-Dollar Corporation’s Brave Struggle for Equality

    • Why thank you! I tend to stay far, far away from anything resembles useless Facebook ranting, but when there are women saying things like “This is not a man versus woman issue,” I just cannot let it go. Because: What. The. What.

  1. I totally feel you on this one! Ugh….

    Here is my problem with the debate above: people who support the decision don’t seem to see how it could be used against them. It’s great that Christians are denying women birth control and claiming it’s stopping abortions if you are a Christian and believe Plan B is essentially an abortion. However, what if the corporation was Islam based and was taking away something Christians felt was medically necessary? What if it was a Christian Science owned business that was denying its staff pretty much any form of medication? Don’t agree with an argument just because you agree with the example – other examples could be thought up to screw you over.


    Also, I just reserved the Handmaid’s Tale from the library because of your last post. And, I can’t seem to italicize that and it’s driving me bananas.

    Love your fire and passion!

    • Thank you! I can get a little worked up. 🙂

      I think you’ve hit on the fundamental issue in the States right now: no one can see past their own experience. There is a general refusal to empathize with fellow Americans, which is ultimately the LEAST American response. People who support things like this decision can’t extend this to its logical end – which is that if something is restricting the rights of “others” right now, it will eventually also allow the restriction of your rights.

      It’s a lose-lose mindset. These people support terrible things because they are selfish, myopic jerks in the present, and can’t even be relied on to act on their own self preservation for the future, because they can’t see far enough past their own noses.

      IT MAKES ME NUTS. (Can you tell?)

      Also, you will LOVE The Handmaid’s Tale. It is amazing.


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