I can't have a feminist rant one week and then say nothing when the Supreme Court passes a sweepingly stupid judgment that affects reproductive rights. So here comes another rant, but first let's get our facts straight.
1. On Monday, the Supreme Court ruled against a provision in the Affordable Care Act that mandated that the health care businesses provide employees must include access to no-copay birth control. Religious nonprofits and churches are already excluded from that mandate.
2. The Supreme Court sided with two plaintiffs, including a closely-held single family corporation called Hobby Lobby, who had argued that provided birth control violated their freedom to practice religion. In point of fact, the issue for the Hobby Lobby wasn't birth control per se, but forms of birth control that they believe are types of early abortion, such as The Morning After Pill.
4. The ruling is strictly limited to contraception and cannot be used to justify exempting things like blood transfusions, vaccines, or psychiatry, which other religions may oppose.
5. For more specifics look http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2014/06/30/327065968/hobby-lobby-ruling-cuts-into-contraceptive-mandate
Ok. I'll keep the rant brief because others have written plenty on this already.
1. I respect religious liberty, but if this were really about religious liberty than why clarify that this cannot apply to other things, like those blood transfusions? Why is religious liberty when it comes to reproduction considered more sacred than religious liberty when it comes to blood?
2. I know that in the US corporations are considered the legal equivalent of people, but isn't it a bit of a stretch to say that corporations can hold religious opinions? Here's a thought: Once my girls turned 13 I was no longer allowed to email their pediatricians because my right to parent butted up against their rights to privacy. If my girls are on birth control it is secret from me--no matter what my religious beliefs may be. How come a parent can't even know if her daughter is on birth control but an employer in Oklahoma can effectively control the birth control choices of his/her employees by effectively controlling their affordability?
3. Don't think for one minute that this is not about women. This is one more in a countless line of stands that says women's lives are defined by their ability to reproduce. They are SO defined by that function a pill that keeps an egg from sticking to the side of the uterine wall is seen by some as the equivalent of a bullet in a baby's head.
4. From where I stand, from what I see, there is palatable aggression against women for being women. The aggression of those five judges who cling to their activist conservative agenda was big, so we are all up in arms. But most aggressions fly low under the radar and most of us fly ride along with them every single day. Every day somebody says you must be mad because "it's your time of the month," you were punched in the face. Every day somebody makes fun of Taylor Swift's many boy friends (as opposed to any male rock star's girlfriends) you've been punched in the face. Every day a TV shows celebrates hook up culture, you've been punched in the face.
5. When you are punched in the face, you do not smile and laugh. So don't smile and laugh when someone punches you in the face.