Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Companies SHOULD Pay For Employees' Abortions

Because it's a legal medical procedure, bitches.

Justice Anthony Kennedy, on whose vote the Hobby Lobby SCOTUS case rests, seems very concerned about the government forcing corporations to cover abortion:

It’s worth noting that Kennedy expressed a different concern than one offered shortly thereafter by Chief Justice John Roberts. Hobby Lobby objects to four forms of contraception on the mistaken ground that these contraceptive methods are actually forms of abortion — a brief filed by numerous medical organizations explains that they are not. Roberts, however, suggested that someone’s mere belief that something is an abortion is enough to trigger an religious exemption to federal law. 
I will never understand this reasoning. I don't get to restrict the compensation I pay to my employees based on their political views. No Muslim or Jewish employer gets to demand that their employees not get coverage for, say, illnesses resulting from eating pork. No Hindu employer gets to restrict health coverage for people who eat beef or were born to the wrong caste. If I found a religion stating that guns are the Devil's tools, I still don't get to restrict medical coverage for my employees based on their gun ownership--even if they shoot themselves.

Abortion isn't some special category of religious exemption. Objections to abortion are based on the entirely doctrinally speculative ground about fetuses having "souls." The Hobby Lobby case goes further: Hobby Lobby wrongly believes that certain forms of birth control are abortifacients, despite the rejection of that premise by serious medical organizations.

But what of it? Abortion rights are the law of the land. Hobby Lobby's rejection of abortion rights as against their religious principles is no more valid a reason to deny an employee compensation than any other form of religious discrimination. The Constitution grants the owners of Hobby Lobby to exercise their own religion as they see fit. It doesn't grant them the right to pay their employees unequally on the basis of their religious beliefs if we've passed a law stating that employees have a right to equal compensation (which is what the ACA essentially does.)

But abortion has been set up in its own special category by conservative male legislators in this country. I am forced to support corporate welfare, Creationist schools and immoral wars with my tax dollars. But for some reason my conservative neighbor doesn't have to support abortion rights with his tax dollars. And if Hobby Lobby gets their way, my conservative neighbor will be able to pay any potential employees differently based on whether they use birth control.

That's not justice. If this country wants to move in that direction, then perhaps progressives nationally should reorganize into a "religion." Sounds like a pretty cool perk: organize politically without the pesky IRS, and enshrine a bunch of political beliefs into a discriminatory legal code. But somehow I don't think the Supreme Court would go for that. "Religious freedom" only goes in one direction: whatever misogynistic conservative men want.
And there it is:  "Religious freedom" only goes in one direction: whatever misogynistic conservative men want.

What they want is the Republic of Gilead.

No comments: