Tens of thousands of people across America on Saturday showed their support for Hobby Lobby, the Christian-owned company now facing millions in fines for fighting against Obamacare. Hobby Lobby, a crafts retailer owned by David Green, filed a lawsuit against Obamacare’s controversial contraception mandate. The Christian company refuses to pay for contraception, sterilization and abortion aids in their employees' health care.
"We simply cannot abandon our religious beliefs to comply with this mandate," David Green stated. "We're Christians, and we run our business on Christian principles," he said in an open letter earlier. "I've always said that the first two goals of our business are (1) to run our business in harmony with God's laws, and (2) to focus on people more than money ... But now, our government threatens to change all of that."
Hobby Lobby filed a lawsuit in 2012 to get relief from Obamacare, but the Supreme Court rejected their request for an emergency injunction. Starting January 1, 2013, the craft retailer faces fines of $1.3 million per day for not complying with the mandate. The Facebook group, “Standing With Hobby Lobby”, is trying to show the Christian company their support.
“This is not just about Hobby Lobby–this is about you,” said former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee. “If Hobby Lobby is forced to eat the ‘king’s meat’ and ‘bow on their knees’ to a human government in direct conflict with their fundamentals of faith, then how long will it be before they come for you and your family?”
Over 60,000 people claimed they would head to their local Hobby Lobby on Saturday. Reports from Hobby Lobby stores around the country were of packed parking lots, long lines, and everyone happy to be supporting the Christian company. Cindy Edwards, a Hobby Lobby employee, thanked those who came to support her employer. “I work at Hobby Lobby in OkLa. We appreciated all those who came in today specifically to stand with the company on this matter and always our regular customers. … I am thankful to be a part of a company that contributes so much to the community and economy. And since the free market companies are what pays for the govt. and all it does, it baffles me the destructive path they are taking towards our free market system. Prayers for eyes opened and changed hearts.”
Many Hobby Lobby supporters are asking people to sign a petition on the White House website to exempt the company from the Obamacare contraception mandate. “The mandate requiring employers to provide abortion-causing drugs as part of their health insurance coverage for employees violates the religious rights of and exercise by employers. Therefore, Hobby Lobby and similarly-founded Christian organizations should not be required to pay for drugs that might cause abortions. This includes emergency contraception, the morning-after pill or the week-after pill. This petition is not limited to Christian business owners, but includes any religious affiliation whose beliefs oppose abortion.”
Only time will tell if Hobby Lobby will be able to continue to fight against the behemoth Obamacare, but many have vowed they will stand up for the company. Many have reflected the sentiment that “no government should tell a private business how to run”. Those who did not have a Hobby Lobby near them, ordered online. Hobby Lobby employees said on Facebook their stores were so busy it was like a grand opening.
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