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Hobby Lobby answering to a higher power

Supporters of religious freedom and Hobby Lobby demonstrating outside the Supreme Court.
Supporters of religious freedom and Hobby Lobby demonstrating outside the Supreme Court.
Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images

On Monday, June 30, the U.S. Supreme Court handed down yet another momentous ruling in the case of Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores. In a 5-4 decision, the court upheld the principal of religious freedom as guaranteed by the First Amendment to the Constitution. They ruled that since Hobby Lobby is a closely held corporation, they cannot be compelled to offer coverage which contradicts their religious beliefs.
In this case, the ruling specifically addressed the Plan B "morning-after pill," the Ella "morning-after pill," and hormonal and copper intrauterine devices (IUDs). Indeed, this very narrow ruling affects only these contraceptives and only closely-held corporations. However, those who oppose contraceptive use on religious grounds have cause to celebrate, because the principles that guided this decision can apply just as readily to other cases such as those involving the Little Sisters of the Poor and EWTN as they navigate their way through the courts.

The liberals who oppose the Hobby Lobby ruling have reacted by saying things like, "This is a blow to women's health." Another reaction has been, "Contraceptive availability has been severely compromised." My personal favorite is part of the dissenting opinion of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg who wrote, that the contraception coverage requirement was vital to women’s health and reproductive freedom.

If you want to talk about women's health, that's a whole other issue. According to the US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health IUDs are responsible for a variety of unpleasant and life-threatening side-effects including uterine perforation. And studies done by the Mayo Clinic show the morning after pill has its problems as well, including nausea or vomiting, dizziness, fatigue, headache, breast tenderness, bleeding between periods or heavier menstrual bleeding, lower abdominal pain or cramps, and diarrhea. Some of these can indicate far more serious damage to the body. In addition, no one has pulled a single item from the market. The ruling has no affect on their availability, only the amount of heavy-booted force the government can use to coerce an employer to pay for something he objects to.

Religious freedom and side-effects aside, this case stems from Obamacare, a law which has nothing to do with mandated coverage for contraceptives v. religious freedom. Rather, this provides us with yet one more example of the government making another attempt to establish itself as so powerful, it can force its citizens to do something they find morally reprehensible. With Obamacare, the government has tried to extend its reach into the conscience of people of faith, twist it, and form it into the image the government finds acceptable.

God bless the founders of Hobby Lobby who stood up and said, "No, no farther," and they won. In fact, we all won. The Justices have once again painted a much bigger picture for all of us by supporting the Constitution. In so doing, they have reinforced the concept of conscience and accountability to a much higher power than that which resides in Washington, D.C.

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