Why everyone should be concerned about the Supreme Court ruling on birth control

NotoriousRBG.jpg
At least we can count on our ride or die, Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
For some reason, women who desire to take care of their bodies -- especially through preventative measures -- are terrifying to some large corporations. Yesterday, five of the nine Supreme Court justices decided that Hobby Lobby was human and that women were not, ruling that certain kinds of companies don't have to cover the costs of specific types of birth control for their employees.

Afterward, I saw many a Facebook spat over our "overreaction" to the ruling; some folks were saying it wasn't a big deal or that they didn't care because it didn't affect them. But here's the thing: when the Supreme Court gives the same rights to companies as it does to people, we have a problem. And when people are denied certain freedoms to take care of their bodies in a safe, effective and affordable way, we have a problem. All of us.

See also: Frida Kahlo of Guerrilla Girls on the dangers of art world tokenism and feminism as an f-word

Memeoftruth.jpg
A meme of truth.
So, what really happened yesterday? The Supreme Court ruled that "closely-held" corporations can refuse to cover certain forms of contraception in their health plans if they are opposed to them from a religious standpoint.

But its seems to me that Hobby Lobby is using religion as a way to distract people from the larger issue of women's (human) rights. When a company actively covers Viagra but won't pay for medication that both prevents pregnancy and provides other health benefits to women -- a message is being sent loud and clear: That 50 percent of the world's population is less valuable than the other half.

But what about the fact that this ruling means that while Hobby Lobby no longer has to cover specific forms of birth control because of its/their religious beliefs -- like emergency contraceptive pills and intrauterine devices -- it may still cover other forms like the pill? Why is that dangerous? This Supreme Court decision is like cracking a door that will eventually get swung wide open -- what if other corporations decide they too want to institute religious beliefs that will cut into healthcare coverage?

It's a gateway to dismantling the workings of the Affordable Care Act, and in turn, creating more ways to remove healthcare access and choices from people who need it. As my mother taught me a long time ago, when limitations are slowly set upon our rights, that only leads to an eventual total overhaul. When we say it is okay to take certain rights away, we are consenting to a longer-term diminishment.

The ruling also imposes one corporation's beliefs onto another person's body. For instance, if you think, "Hey, maybe the morning after pill isn't a good idea, and corporations shouldn't have to pay for something that was created for people who make 'bad choices?", well guess what: we don't get to decide these things for anyone else. A morning after-pill is still preventative and it is still up to the human whose body is taking it to decide why she is taking that step. It is not anyone else's moral or religious obligation to say whether she is making the right choice. It should be covered just like any other healthcare, just like any other form of birth control.

And what if you yourself are not a heterosexual female? Why should you care about women having access to healthcare? I think of it like this: I advocate for equal rights for people of color. I have marched at the State Capitol in support of the global LGBTQIA community. I've spent a good amount of time highlighting and speaking out against what I see and believe to be classism in every day life. So, even though I myself am a white, cisgendered, heterosexual female who comes from a working class background, I believe all people should be granted the same freedoms. I have a personal interest in what happens to all people.

What I'm saying is, this ruling isn't a gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity or class-specific problem. It's a human problem. We are all humans, and when important entities like the Supreme Court decide that corporations have the right to push religious-based agendas that limit individual's choices and rights when it comes to their bodies, that's everyone's problem.

And finally, this argument: What if I don't shop at Hobby Lobby anyway? Why should I care about this ruling if I don't support the particular corporation in the first place?

Because you live in this country too, the same country that the people who work at Hobby Lobby live in. And when the Supreme Court decides that a corporation is a person with religious beliefs but a woman is not a person free to take care of her body as she chooses and sees fit, that's a problem for everyone. Because again, when we pull back the social constructs around gender and sexuality, we are all the same kind of human being, and no corporation should be telling us what to do with our bodies.

Our main woman the Notorious Ruth Bader Ginsburg did an awesome job of expressing her complete disgust with the ruling her counterparts made yesterday. For those of us on her side of the ruling, it was a call to action.

Do you value body autonomy? I do. And I don't plan on giving up my rights any time soon.

Be my voyeur (or better yet, let me stalk you) on Twitter: @cocodavies




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166 comments
muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

Still no word on when the hobby lobby people are going to follow Christ's Biblical commandment to give ALL thier money to the poor.  Or do they get to just pick and choose what parts of Christianity they like....except THE BIBLE DOESN'T MENTION BIRTH CONTROL.

Typical right wing hypocrites.  And Christ DID speak out against the hypocrites and money changers...the republicans of his day.

Earl Laih
Earl Laih

Hobby Lobby is covering 16 of the 20 forms of birth control forms outlined in the ACA. Their objection was providing abortifacients. This isn't about women's rights. This is about propaganda. The Nazis and Soviets were pretty good at propaganda to control their populous.

Justin Belmont
Justin Belmont

Looks like Westword is Left wing bullshit media like the rest. Go push your bullshit somewhere else. Obamacare is unconstitutional and fuck all you liberals.

muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

Still no word when Christian values hobby lobby will give ALL their $$$ to the poor as Christ commanded.

I didn't catch the part where he spoke out against birth control.......

Steven Bohn
Steven Bohn

"When a company actively covers Viagra but won't pay for medication that both prevents pregnancy and provides other health benefits to women" lol

Dean Harris
Dean Harris

Interesting and well written sermon but perhaps writer should have read the decision first.

muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

GOOD AMERICANS, DO NOT SHOP AT HOBBY LOBBY, GOOD AMERICAN WOMEN, NEVER NEVER VOTE REPUBLICAN, this is their war on women at it's "finest."

I still haven't heard anything about hobby lobby donating ALL their money to the poor like Christ called for.  Christ said NOTHING about not paying for birth control, but DID say to give one's riches to the poor.  Come on, hobby lobby!

The supreme court, ruled by the "fascist 5" is why we should NEVER allow the courts to appoint another conservative.

Q:  Why are conservatives so against birth control?

A:  Don't need it with young hairless boys.

One last question for the band of idiots, I mean the us supreme court:  My religious beliefs forbid illegal wars for profit.  I shouldn't have to pay for Operation Make A Buck. 

Jerome Smith
Jerome Smith

Since when does a business fully pay for your insurance? Last time I checked I had it taken out of my check

Laura Chrisler-Matheney
Laura Chrisler-Matheney

Having access to it over the counter would be awesome. But conservatives argue against that as well...

Laura Chrisler-Matheney
Laura Chrisler-Matheney

It might inhibit you from getting it if the non contracted, full price of the med were hundreds of dollars

Esteban Mainzer
Esteban Mainzer

^ sarah is a moron. she says "when i pay for something"... but she isn't paying for it. hobby lobby is paying for it.

Esteban Mainzer
Esteban Mainzer

liberal hysteria. if my company fires me it doesn't take away my right to free speech because it's no longer paying for my internet connection. this is election year bullshit.

Nakita Horton
Nakita Horton

Wow. Talk about a "slippery slope." That may be the most insane article I've ever read.

Radiant Sun
Radiant Sun

Women are prescribed bc for serious health problems; not just to prevent them from pregnancy. Thats a problem in my opinion.

Molly Breen
Molly Breen

It's more so the citing of this case in future suits that people need to worry about.

Megan Haenny
Megan Haenny

Birth control isn't just about sex, you idiots!!

Jason Lothbrok
Jason Lothbrok

And if this is such a big deal for you then why don't you spend your energy preaching on pregnancy prevention? HAHA!

Bryan Moberg
Bryan Moberg

just a further extension of this corporations are people bullshit, it can only get worse from here.

Bryan Moberg
Bryan Moberg

where have you been? its always been liberal, thats their stated agenda, i'm starting to think foxnews has a conservative bent...

John Jurgens
John Jurgens

So in the dead of night, Kathleen S and Obama craft a new twist to the healthcare bill. Let's make everyone pay for the killing of the unborn. This isn't about woman's rights, they already have them. This is about religious rights. It's forcing the practices of barbarians to those who respect life. Much like the objections of those who founded this country, where the King forced everyone to give to churches that some people found objectable , like the Catholic Church. Now the liberals come up with the scheme, much like the kings, to do the same thing. I guess you can kill your baby, the law slows that, but use your own money, I don't want their blood on my hands.

William Silcott
William Silcott

So religion is above the law? Religions are already exempt from tax and now from appointed laws. So who really runs the country? Church? The government? Voters? The courts? In other countries, most countries in fact, religions pay extra tax. Google it I dare you!

Jessica Espinosa-LaFever
Jessica Espinosa-LaFever

Not all women are on birth control for the sole purpose of pregnancy prevention. I have Poly Cystic Ovarian Syndrome and use the pill to control the symptoms and keep my hormones balanced. I cannot have children. Many women choose IUDs to treat other reproductive issues and balance progesterone in their systems. Please don't lump all women into a sexually irresponsible category because they use birth control.

Phisher McFlintstone
Phisher McFlintstone

your article is poorly written bullshit purposely made to misinform people and rage the liberal machine. Before Obamacare Hobby Lobby provided health insurance to it's employees and it doesn't pay anyone minimum wage so it's employees have money to go buy whatever they want. HL also was on board with 16 of the 20 forms covered under Obamacare, they only opposed providing 4 forms because they are taken after someone believes they are pregnant (which to a christian is abortion). However, the machine won't talk about the fact that you had 16 other options... just that HL is against women's rights. Bullshit. LIBERAL GARBAGE and your editor should be fired for letting such factually inaccurate garbage out on behalf of Westword.

David Alley
David Alley

Don't you find it the least bit ironic that the only reason this came about is that Obamacare was shoved down the throats of Americans and American companies?

Tarmen N Kayela Adams
Tarmen N Kayela Adams

This isn't just about liberal vs conservative and pro choice vs pro life. This decision could open the door to corporations not wanting to cover something like diabetic medication because diabetes is sometimes caused by being overweight. Corporations are not people and should not be given the rights of people.

Cliff Lopez
Cliff Lopez

Suzanne...seems as if you want a "baby daddy" gov't to take care of everything for you.

Ken Tschappat
Ken Tschappat

Whether they cover vaccines or not would not inhibit me from getting mine. And saying that they don't want to be forced to do something that is against their religious belief should not inhibit a woman from getting hers. As for saying that not paying for BC prohibits a woman from "taking care of her body" is blatant exhibition of a "Liberal bias". I thought Westword as a news paper, looks pretty much like a Denver Post to me, and that ain't a good thing.

Stephen Swindall
Stephen Swindall

Oh and they pay double the minimum wage to start off ... What terrible people ...

Stephen Swindall
Stephen Swindall

They cover birth control not abortion pills ... If you use the birth control they give you you won't have to use the abortion pills. What the hell is the problem?!

Stephanie Wilson
Stephanie Wilson

They didn't rule out birth control. They ruled out the abortion pill. There is a difference and I stand behind Hobby Lobby for defending their Christian beliefs.

muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

All conservatives are good at propaganda, not just the ones you mention.  They are selling shit sandwiches.....truth is not their friend.

fishingblues
fishingblues topcommenter

This one post defeats the entire loony liberal, loud-mouthed lament.



muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

I'll let the right wing supreme court know how your cute little ruling differs from their ruling.

I'm not interested in your proposition, conservatives are nasty.

fishingblues
fishingblues topcommenter

@muhutdafuga


WOW!!!      Delirious, delusional and dumb as fuck.   


Rug munching is making you crazy.  

muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

A business doesn't pay an employee's insurance, it is part of a compensation package. 

fishingblues
fishingblues topcommenter

When you become a valued employee.  

muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

Insurance is part of a compensation package. 

muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

You just keep getting dumber, nervous little conservative.

muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

Don't confuse the conservacultists with facts.

muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

Conservatives didn't ask to be idiots, or did they......

muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

The fascist 5 is what we get when we have too many republicult presidents.  One is too many.

muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

@fishingblues @muhutdafuga Fishingforyounghairlessboys is the best argument in favor of birth control there is.

Spew is not refutation, weak minded little cultist.

muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

@fishingblues @muhutdafuga What's a shit sandwich?  That sounds like the republican platform.

Q:  Why do conservatives hate birth control?

A:  They don't need it with young hairless boys.

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