Liberty Alert: Companies Make Small Gains in Fight Against HHS Birth Control Mandate

I had hoped to get this post out on Ash Wednesday.  I thought the timing would have been appropriate.  Since it didn’t work out that way though, I thought, “Better late than never!”

On Tuesday, Grote Industries, a vehicle lighting manufacturer based in Madison, Indiana, won an injunction that, for now, protects the owners’ religious freedom as it pertains to the HHS birth control mandate.  Had the company not received the injunction, they would have been fined for every day that they didn’t offer health coverage that paid for birth control, sterilization, and abortion drugs.

The preliminary injunction was granted in a 2 to 1 vote in the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals.  Judge Ilana Diamond Rovner dissented.  From the National Catholic Register:

“Rovner argued that corporations, not their owners, are obliged to provide contraceptive coverage by the mandate. She said that because Grote Industries is not ‘organized expressly to pursue religious ends’,it has no ‘religious interests or rights.'”

I’m absolutely thrilled to see that some courts are respecting the religious rights of for-profit business owners.  I was horrified though by the supposition that to do business in the United States, to earn a fair wage for a full day’s work, you have to throw religious principals straight out the window.  Again, the federal government is asking people to choose.  Do business in the U.S. or be Catholic Christians.  How can people be expected to choose?

There are a number of for-profit businesses that are challenging the HHS mandate on religious grounds.  It’ll be interesting to see how everything unfolds.  Not all plantiffs are getting injunctions, but more are successful than not.  The thought of doing any sort of business in a way that’s counter to my moral conscience formation terrifies me, so bet I’ll be watching and praying.

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2 Responses to Liberty Alert: Companies Make Small Gains in Fight Against HHS Birth Control Mandate

  1. Sherri says:

    It’s not just the Catholics, Evangelicals are fighting it too. I know Hobby Lobby is suing to get out of this provision. While I personally don’t have any religious prohibitions against birth control I do feel it is morally wrong for the government to force business owners into this choice. But of course I don’t agree with much of anything the government does. ;-)

    • Oh, I realize that we Catholics don’t have the monopoly here. :) We just seem to be the most vocal about it with the Evangelicals coming in a close second.

      And for those who may not know/understand, one reason that folks object to birth control is the fact that it essentially works by causing an obortion of sorts. And if you believe that human personhood starts at conception and ends at natural death, you’re certainly going to have an issue with the government REQUIRING that you participate in abortion over and over again.

      Like you, Sherri, I don’t think it’s the government’s business. Contraception and abortion are not rights that should be legislated by the government. And saying that a “business” has no religious rights is just insane! I have to take a couple deep breaths to lower my blood pressure just thinking about it! :)

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