It’s been such a while since my last post. I really wish this was a post about good news, (don’t worry that is soon to come!) but unfortunately, as usual my wings are in a tizzy and I had to take to the keyboard to let them stretch out a bit….
I have written and re-written this post exactly five times now. Each time I do my faith in the actual existence of a gigantic Pandora’s Box, opening up and destroying every social victory that this country has achieved in the past 60 years, becomes real to me. Initially, as I always do, I wanted to write this from the POV of the women that the decision made today affects women in this country and around the world. After all, as a world leader, the United States does set a certain global president. But what happened today is bigger than Womanity….it effects us all.
No matter where you are in the United States of America today, you heard the explosion. The Supreme Court dropped an atomic sized decision today that rocked the very foundation of the country. Not only does the Hobby Lobby decision affect women in this country, it potentially set the stage for a complete societal upheaval.
In the decision, as you may well know, the Supreme Court made it legal for corporations to opt out of paying for contraception for their employees, based on religious beliefs. To conservatives and pro-lifers, the decision is a big win for the right to life. To liberals not only is it a direct attack in the War On Women, but it is a total invasion of personal privacy. But to some rest of us it is the latter and much worse; it is an affront to the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The vagueness of the decision leaves the door open for the very acts of discrimination that millions of Americans fought and died to stop, to be inflicted on a whole new generation.
And I’m going to say it openly, in my opinion; today’s decision just paved the way for a Christian version of sharia law in the United States. Yes, I said it and I will say it again-anytime, anywhere. Think about it. This whole thing may have started out being about money, but as I see it, it’s about much more than that now.
If I, as a corporation, choose not to provide contraceptive coverage for my employees because of my religious beliefs, what else can I refuse to do for those same beliefs? This is a realistic concern, not melodrama. If a corporation can hide behind religion to make decisions about their employee’s healthcare, what can/will stop them from using those ‘beliefs’ to justify not hiring, or firing women, minorities, people of different faiths and sexual orientation?
You must understand that every religion has sub sects or sub groups within it. Let’s look at the Christian Church for a moment. The reason the Church (Universal Church) has so many different doctrines is because Christians can’t seem to agree on what is “of God” and what is “not of God”. Even though the Bible is plain, that does not keep men from interpreting it based upon their own individual will.
The Protestant religion alone has more denominations that any other religion in the world. And each of these denominations is further broken down into individual regions that are further broken down to individual churches. I tell people all the time-it doesn’t matter what denomination you belong to, the belief system of the individual church is founded upon the belief system of that church’s leadership. In other words, you are only as Baptist as your pastor. It is church leadership that sets the standard for the belief system of the entire congregation. As the Sheppard, he/she guides the flock down what he/she deems are the right steps to take down the right path. Those individual steps can be the difference between Jesus being merely the Son of God and He being God Himself.
And let’s even go a step further and say that every individual person in a single church does not agree with the entire mission or leadership of that church. I know this for a fact. I have fellowshipped with many churches whose mission statements I don’t agree 100% with. So we have yet another set of personal beliefs to take into consideration.
With all of this division within the Protestant Church alone, how can any court say that a employer’s religious beliefs can be used to enforce their will upon those who don’t agree with it? And where will it end? Is there a standard? Will every employer have to provide the government with their church membership papers and mission statement that can and will be given to every employee? And who makes the decision on what religion and/or belief the employer is following? The Board, CEO, company President?
Listen, man has been using the Bible and other religious books to dominate and enslave others since the foundation of the world. In this country alone, slavery, female oppression, violence against homosexuals and even murder, were all justified by the Bible. And discrimination against these people groups still go on today using the same scriptural arguments that were used 200 years ago. Women, minorities and homosexuals are discriminated on a regular basis in churches across this country by individuals who believe that their religion states that these groups don’t belong in their church or shouldn’t have a position of authority.
My point here is this: To force anyone to submit to the religious beliefs of another is not only unfair, it is dangerous and reckless. Where will it stop? Can religious beliefs be used to hire or fire based on belief system? And what about women; this is not just about reproductive rights. How will this decision affect the hire ability of a woman in her child bearing age? Can an employer refuse to hire a woman because he/she believes that women are a liability or worse, that women who are mothers only belong in the home?! God help us… What if the employer believes religiously that a woman should not be placed in a position of authority? Will women begin to be passed over for executive positions?
Butterflies, I love you. And because I love you, I’m going to fight with you. We can’t sit by and let this decision unravel the very fabric of this country. While we may not be able to overturn the decision, we can make is difficult for people to act on it.
If they want to take society back to the 60’s, then let’s go! I’ve always admired the civil rights movement. I wondered what I would do if I was there during that time. I don’t have to wonder anymore. It might be the same old fight, but it’s a new day, a new generation and we have more on our side than the ones before us did….their victory!
Let the protests, boycotts and marches begin!! I’m personally joining the boycott on Hobby Lobby and any other company that enforces this policy. I would like to keep a list here of such entities, so if any of you know of companies to boycott, or if any of you are having events or petitions or whatever, please send it to me @ firstname.lastname@example.org and I will post it to the site and to all of our social media sites.