Tuesday, July 01, 2014

Justice Ginsburg's transphobia

I'm going to comment on Ginsburg's dissent:

  • "The exemption sought by Hobby Lobby and Conestoga would…deny legions of women who do not hold their employers' beliefs access to contraceptive coverage"
i) Notice her blatantly sexist objection. Why not object that the exemption would deny legions of men (as well as women) access?
ii) Women still have access to contraceptives. Has Ginsburg never been inside a drug store? Not to mention online pharmacies. 

iii) Actually, I don't think an exception should be made for Hobby Lobby since I don't think businesses should be required to provide health insurance in the first place.

  • "Religious organizations exist to foster the interests of persons subscribing to the same religious faith. Not so of for-profit corporations. Workers who sustain the operations of those corporations commonly are not drawn from one religious community."

That's monumentally ignorant. For instance, Christian charities do not exist to foster the interests of Christians. Christian charities routinely minister to non-Christians. That's part of the church's outreach to the lost. 

  • "Any decision to use contraceptives made by a woman covered under Hobby Lobby's or Conestoga's plan will not be propelled by the Government, it will be the woman's autonomous choice, informed by the physician she consults."
If it's about a woman's autonomous choice, shouldn't she buy her own contraceptives? 

Incidentally, notice Ginsburg's transphobic language. But I thought gender was a social construct. 

  • "It bears note in this regard that the cost of an IUD is nearly equivalent to a month's full-time pay for workers earning the minimum wage."

If IUDs are that expensive, then clearly someone is picking up the tab. So isn't this a shell-game? Who's paying?  

  • "Would the exemption…extend to employers with religiously grounded objections to blood transfusions (Jehovah's Witnesses); antidepressants (Scientologists); medications derived from pigs, including anesthesia, intravenous fluids, and pills coated with gelatin (certain Muslims, Jews, and Hindus); and vaccinations[?]…Not much help there for the lower courts bound by today's decision."

i) At most, this ruling partially restores the status quo ante prior to HHS implementing Obamacare. Were these worst-case scenarios happening before Obamacare?

ii) If you disagree with a Muslim, Hindu, or Jewish employer's scruples, don't work for him. 

iii) Anyone who works for the "church" of Scientology deserves whatever they get. 

  • "Approving some religious claims while deeming others unworthy of accommodation could be 'perceived as favoring one religion over another,' the very 'risk the [Constitution's] Establishment Clause was designed to preclude."
In that event, HHS has no business approving or disapproving religious claims in the first place. 


  1. 1. Just as a general comment, the language in Ginsburg's dissent is overwrought. In fact, it seems borderline hysterical.

    The Hobby Lobby decision still allows individuals access to male and female condoms, birth control pills, various spermicides, implantable rods, surgeries like vasectomies and sterilizations, and a host of other types of contraceptives. What it disallows is possible abortifacients like morning after pills.

    2. Obviously a conservative religious company wouldn't support abortion. Why then should it be forced by law to provide abortifacients?

    What's the real issue here?

    3. If it's cost, there are organizations like Planned Parenthood that are more than happy to subsidize much if not most or all of the cost of the morning after pill or IUD. Heck, if I'm not mistaken, they'll even do it for teenagers who would otherwise presumably be on their parents' health insurance plans. A morning after pill usually costs around $25-$50 while an IUD (which lasts for over 10 years) usually costs around $500-$1000.

    4. Isn't Obamacare only meant to cover preventative healthcare? If so, isn't the assumption here that pregnancy is a disease to be prevented?

  2. Steve, do you know of ways that conservatives can combat judicial activism?

    Sort of somewhat related, one thing that's noteworthy about socialist mechanisms (like social security, public healthcare, etc.) is that they appear to be harder to dismantle than to prevent. Once they're put into place, conservatives seem to be wary of trying to reverse them.

  3. Newt Gingrich pointed out that the Constitution gives Congress the authority to establish and abolish Federal judgeships. And that's more than hypothetical: Gingrich said the “judicial reform act of 1802 abolished 18 out of 35 federal judges, over half."

    Also, the Constitution doesn't actually give SCOTUS the authority to strike down acts of Congress.