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Hullabaloo


Wednesday, July 30, 2014

 
Venturing into the minefield


by digby

I think this story in Salon about the Satanist strategy is a great way to challenge the Hobby Lobby ruling, although I have very little doubt that the most it will do is expose the utter hypocrisy of the "religious freedom" folks. But that's not nothin':
[S]atanists are now using the Supreme Court’s sweeping Hobby Lobby decision to challenge coercive mandatory counseling laws by requesting a religious exemption for satanists (and non-satanists).

“While we feel we have a strong case for an exemption regardless of the Hobby Lobby ruling, the Supreme Court has decided that religious beliefs are so sacrosanct that they can even trump scientific fact,” Satanic Temple spokesperson Lucian Greaves said in a Monday statement. ”This was made clear when they allowed Hobby Lobby to claim certain contraceptives were abortifacients, when in fact they are not. Because of the respect the Court has given to religious beliefs, and the fact that our our beliefs are based on best available knowledge, we expect that our belief in the illegitimacy of state­ mandated ‘informational’ material is enough to exempt us, and those who hold our beliefs, from having to receive them.”

...The Hobby Lobby decision granted 90 percent of the corporations in the United States a kind of religious personhood under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. So now the government can’t require Hobby Lobby or any corporation to include comprehensive contraceptive coverage in its employer health plan if that coverage violates the corporation’s religious beliefs.

Because medicine and scientific fact are the tenets of satanists’ faith, then medically inaccurate and coercive counseling laws present a substantial burden, according to Greaves. This is pretty much what Ruth Bader Ginsburg was talking about in her dissent when she said the justices had “ventured into a minefield.”

I'm fairly sure that one of the reasons for the establishment clause was that the founders were wise enough to know that government and religion becoming entwined was a pathway to hell. (Just look at Europe 500 years ago --- or Iraq today.)

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