Last week, the Supreme Court heard oral arguments in the Sebelius v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc case. As virtually everyone is aware, the CEO of Hobby Lobby is contesting the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act's contraception mandate.
The company's refusal to comply with the mandate stems from a religious objection to birth control and abortifacient drugs, and they insist that the First Amendment protects their right to exclude these prescriptions from their health insurance plans. One of the interesting questions at issue in this case is whether or not corporations are entitled to the same legal protections as individual persons. Supporters of Hobby Lobby are quick to point to the legal precedent set in the recent Citizens United ruling, which concluded that corporations, like persons, are protected by the First Amendment in the area of free speech. Thus, if corporations have the same speech rights as individuals persons, so too should they have the same rights of religious conscience. If Hobby Lobby is owned by a Christian family and governed according to explicitly Biblical principles, then it follows that the company's health care coverage may reflect those principles, and the government may not infringe upon this area of Free Exercise.
There is no question that the law has treated corporations as "people" for various reasons, particularly in the last century. Women- and minority-owned businesses, for example, are often entitled to the same kind of affirmative action and quota policies as individuals in these demographics. This debate has prompted journalists and commentators to engage in a review of the judicial history of corporate personhood, in an attempt to navigate the assertions being made in the Hobby Lobby case. Turns out, despite the popular impact of the Citizens United decision, that the habit of according individual rights to corporations is a relatively new phenomenon. From Slate: more >>
Oh, how the tide has turned against abortion. Just last week, there were three stunning setbacks to the pro-abortion movement.
The first came Tuesday during oral argument in the Hobby Lobby case before the U.S. Supreme Court. The left wing of the Court was having a field day by predicting a parade of horribles if Hobby Lobby were to obtain a religious exemption from contraceptive regulations that violate its owners' consciences.
But then, Justice Anthony Kennedy, the swing vote in the Court, startled liberals with a comment he made to the Obama administration's attorney: "Under your view, a for-profit corporation ... could be forced in principle to pay for abortions." more >>
On March 14 Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Welsh told members of the House Armed Services committee that there was no war on religious liberty.
"The single biggest frustration I've had in this job is the perception that somehow there is religious persecution inside the United States Air Force," the general told lawmakers. "It is not true."
If that's true, perhaps Gen. Welsh could explain why a Bible was removed from a POW/MIA Missing Man Table at Patrick Air Force Base in Florida. The removal of the Good Book was first reported by the Gannett-owned newspaper Florida Today. more >>
For the second straight week, God's Not Dead has finished fifth place at the U.S. box office, earning just one percent less this past weekend than the $9.2 million it brought in over its opening weekend when the film was released on March 21.
This past weekend, the small independent faith-based movie expanded its release by nearly 400 theaters and took in $9 million, bringing its total box office earnings to $22 million.
God's Not Dead, which portrays a college student who accepts his atheist professor's challenge to provide a defense for the existence of God and Christianity, followed the fourth-place Mr. Peabody and Sherman. more >>
We've heard it for years now from gay activists. "You need to be tolerant and inclusive. You need to embrace diversity."
The only problem is that in reality, tolerance, inclusivity, and diversity only go one way, and pity the person the person who dare challenges that narrow and exclusive way.
This is a lesson that Brendan Eich, the CEO of the internet giant Mozilla, just learned firsthand, with employees calling for his resignation because, in 2008, he made a donation to support Proposition 8 in California, upholding marriage as the union of one man and one woman. Of course, had he supported the redefinition of marriage in 2008, he would be hailed as a hero today. more >>
The U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments last week in the Hobby Lobby case to decide whether a business that provides health-care insurance to its employees can be forced to include abortifacients in its coverage. Hobby Lobby filed a lawsuit against the federal government over the Obamacare mandate of providing abortifacients.
Hobby Lobby is a family-owned arts and crafts store, run by Christians based out of Oklahoma. The family has devoted itself to Christian mission work, and Christian music is played over the loudspeakers in its stores. The owners are not Catholic, and aren't even objecting to providing contraceptives, it is solely the abortifacients that they have a problem providing, believing that a fertilized embryo is a human life that must be protected. Conestoga Wood Specialties, also owned by Christians, is part of the lawsuit.
There is no legitimate concern, and it's frankly a waste of taxpayers' money that this has to go to court. In today's Internet society, any woman can purchase dirt-cheap abortifacients online without a prescription, or from Planned Parenthood and other women's clinics for free or low cost. They can also take an increased dosage of contraceptives to act as an abortifacient, since that is all abortifacients are. There is zero reason to force an employer to include abortifacients in coverage. Most health insurance through an employer includes co-pay, and since abortifacients have been made so commonplace, women are probably better off finding it discounted somewhere else. Employees of Hobby Lobby also have the option to choose Obamacare instead of their employer's health insurance. more >>