Missing the point of liberty and freedom

Not surprisingly former president of the National Organization for Women (NOW), Ann Lynch, has a problem with Hobby Lobby’s business practices.  She penned a letter to the editor of the New Haven Register which was published on Tuesday, June 25th doing her best to turn the public against the retailer which just located to an area town.  Her beef is with their closed on Sundays and health insurance coverage policies.

letter to edI don’t know if she misunderstands the American concepts of religious liberty and the freedoms associated with private business ownership, or if it’s her activist mindset which makes her complaints so disconnected.

She tries to frame her issues with Hobby Lobby as one trying to protect victims.  Hobby Lobby’s employees aren’t victims of their employer.

Any employer is not obligated to violate their conscience for the happiness of their employees.  Hobby Lobby and any other businesses recruit workers by offering a combination of wages and benefits.  These are made known prior to the interviewee saying (voluntarily), “I’ll take the job”.  If  Hobby Lobby doesn’t want to pay for abortion inducing drugs or birth control pills (Tri-Sprintec and Sprintec which can be obtained at Target pharmacies for as little as $9 per month with no health insurance) then that was a condition of employment.  If they aren’t required to provide health insurance at all, how can you assert what must be covered if they freely choose to offer it in the first place?

Moreover, it never ceases to amaze me when people — well to do people — complain about the wages of entry level, low skill jobs (no advanced education or specialized skill required) as if these jobs are supposed to pay more than they do.  These jobs are not intended to support families with their wages even if people use them as primary employment.  They are supplemental income and stepping stone jobs, not careers.  It should be expected that one would eventually move on or move up to a higher paying job.

Nothing productive comes from demonizing a business which employs people in an economy where the number of people without work is at an all time high.

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I submitted a version of this post to the opinion editor of the New Haven Register.

Comments

  1. I have yet to see where Hobby-Lobby is imposing their “religious” beliefs on anyone who works of them.

    She complains about no insurance for “family planning” or birth control; since when is any insurance needed for “family planning.” You plan your family by deciding when to have sexual relations without using some method of birth control, most types of which are free to everyone. As for other types of birth control, why is it anyone else’s responsibility to pay for birth control?

    I don’t see why insurance companies should have to pay for birth control or abortion regardless of anyone’s religious beliefs. Insurance is usually a protection against unexpected losses. All health insurance should be for things medically necessary, and neither birth control nor abortion fall into medically necessary medical procedures. Guess what – everyone has free birth control and it is called self control!

  2. I’m actually going to agree with the majority of what you said here John. I don’t think that employers should be required to offer any insurance coverage that is not mandated by Federal Law. I don’t even necessarily agree that there has to be (though I would be content with) government mandated birth control coverage in insurance plans.
    As you may know, I live in Communist Canada- and birth control is not even covered by our Universal Health Care system. It is commonly covered by employer sponsored benefit packages, as are most drugs (my employer covers all but a $5 dispensing fee). I wouldn’t be opposed to birth control being covered, as I think it is a huge cost savings for the system and for employers.
    Our minimum wage laws in the Province I reside in mandate that all employees make $10.25 per hour minimum wage- and I disagree with you that businesses that are employing people full time should not have to provide a “living wage”. There are not enough skilled labour jobs in any economy to employ every able bodied adult, and the result of no “living wage” laws is that you have a perpetual underclass that cannot even afford basic human dignity.

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