I can’t remember a recent issue that’s been more shamelessly propagandized than the Hobby Lobby Supreme Court case. To hear some people talk, you’d think that the court’s decision in Hobby Lobby’s favor means that police are going to start going door-to-door, confiscating women’s pills, rings, and patches at gunpoint.
Just a reminder before we get carried away: Hobby Lobby doesn’t have the power to do that.
And even if they did, they wouldn’t want to. The company’s lawyer says that the owners would love nothing more than to stay out of women’s birth control decisions.
Although conservatives have tried to spell it out for them, it seems many people just don’t see the difference between refusing to pay for something and banning it. This distinction was explained in an exasperated Washington Times piece last week.
One of the most persistent canards the Obama campaign got away with was that Republicans wanted to “end access to birth control.” What Republicans were opposing wasn’t “whether or not you can have contraception,” as one Democratic Congresswoman put it, but whether or not your boss should be required to pay for your birth control.
The liberal mindset sometimes doesn’t differentiate between state action and non-state action. If your boss says you need to pay for your own birth control, that may actually seem to some liberals as equivalent to the government banning birth control, somehow. Some liberals think that unless something is mandatory, it’s as good as prohibited.
Oh, also, Hobby Lobby actually does pay for workers’ birth control, including the patch, the pill, and other hormonal methods used only by women. Hobby Lobby refuses to cover only four types of contraception: Plan B and Ella (both emergency contraceptives) and two types of the IUD. That’s it. All other FDA-approved forms of birth control are covered.
So what was this case really about? It was about forcing Hobby Lobby to pay for employees’ IUDs, when the employee could choose from a plethora of other contraceptives, go work somewhere else, or–gasp!–pay for it themselves. In the words of Hobby Lobby’s own lawyer, the company doesn’t know, or care, if an employee uses an IUD. They would love nothing more than to stay out of employee’s bedrooms completely. Hobby Lobby opponents are not only insisting that the company enter employees’ bedrooms (and doctor’s offices), but finance everything that goes on there.
A “war on women” this isn’t.