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Supreme Court limits birth control on religious grounds
Posted 7/7/14
I NEED ALL THE CONTRACEPTIVES, AAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH
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33 / M / Baltimore, MD
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Posted 7/7/14
Hobby Lobby choses not to cover Plan B, Ella, & IUDs. They cover 16 other forms of birth control required by the current federal mandate. The belief is that either of these four options can be used to terminate a pregnancy in some way. All four of them can prevent a fertilized egg from implanting on the uterine wall. As the owners of Hobby Lobby are devout Christians who believe life begins at conception (not implantation), this is an issue for them. So, they oppose those four forms of birth control.

There are a lot of arguments to be made here, but bottom line - the ruling declared that a privately owned company by a small group (i.e. family) can decide their own insurance policies based on their faith with regards to this particular mandate. It was a fairly narrow decision, frankly.

It didn't ban contraceptives. It didn't prohibit these employees from purchasing them on their own (Plan B is $47 at Walmart). This does not create an undue burden on Hobby Lobby employees (who are paid far better than their peers at similar businesses). It was a family owned private business making a decision to not use their money to pay for something they believe is murder. I stand behind the court's decision and Hobby Lobby.
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33 / M / Florida
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Posted 7/7/14

MysticGon wrote:

So if some are allowed why not all? Well you draw the distinction of what it can do to a fertilized egg. It may not prevent a fertilized egg from implanting every time, but among it's other functions it can. That's where my red flags pop up and that's where I draw the line. As for the drugs become dangerous to the person taking them? As a business owner I feel no responsibility in the actions of another adult. My responsibility stops with my choosing of the group plan or the insurance I offer in house. Everything else is the responsibility of the employee. No one can force that person to do anything.


The reason the danger clause becomes an issue, is because no one may force an individual to submit to a hazardous/high risk medical treatment. If you have a chance, take a look at the prescription coverage terms if you are covered by a health insurance policy. There should be a clause in many categories where they state something like "all similarly classed medications where the covered medications are ineffective or dangerous to the user's health." This is where the omission of named treatments becomes an issue and where contraceptives are a bit backwards when compared to other medical treatments. Contraceptives usually do not have this type of category and usually are only covered if specifically named.

You are not responsible for the actions of your employees, but what if your choice puts the life of an employee in danger? Are you alright with the knowledge that your choice in health insurance coverage has just caused an employee to die because the medical treatment they could have used was not included and was ineligible for coverage? No, I am not saying the omission of the 4 specific choices made by Hobby Lobby would lead to this scenario. I am just using it to illustrate how some choices when expanded upon can have dire consequences.


mdmrn wrote:

Hobby Lobby choses not to cover Plan B, Ella, & IUDs. They cover 16 other forms of birth control required by the current federal mandate. The belief is that either of these four options can be used to terminate a pregnancy in some way. All four of them can prevent a fertilized egg from implanting on the uterine wall. As the owners of Hobby Lobby are devout Christians who believe life begins at conception (not implantation), this is an issue for them. So, they oppose those four forms of birth control.

There are a lot of arguments to be made here, but bottom line - the ruling declared that a privately owned company by a small group (i.e. family) can decide their own insurance policies based on their faith with regards to this particular mandate. It was a fairly narrow decision, frankly.

It didn't ban contraceptives. It didn't prohibit these employees from purchasing them on their own (Plan B is $47 at Walmart). This does not create an undue burden on Hobby Lobby employees (who are paid far better than their peers at similar businesses). It was a family owned private business making a decision to not use their money to pay for something they believe is murder. I stand behind the court's decision and Hobby Lobby.
Actually, it does at face value prevent employees from purchasing their own. One of the clauses that was discussed was that doctors and nurses could not discuss any contraceptive medications, treatments, nor methods with the employee. In order for a doctor to prescribe such, the client must be informed and in agreement without being coerced. How can an employee be informed and in agreement if they are unable to talk about the topic with a medical professional?

I'm not saying that the situation applies to all companies nor all employees. I am taking the decision and expanding on it and the multiple aspects of impact that it could potentially have. I understand that Hobby Lobby opposes only the 4 methods of contraception, but I would hope that IF the treatment became necessary that Hobby Lobby would care enough about their employee to make an exception.
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Posted 7/7/14

Bullbound wrote:




Just like I'm not responsible for what my employee buys with their salary, I'm not responsible for what they put in their system. You don't shove your views into a closet based on factors you have no control over. You can only focus on the one's you do. If a doctor bursts into my office and says "quick, your employee will die unless you buy them this contraceptive" I'll tell them to get lost. I don't view the drug as a life saving one, but rather a life-inhibiting one, and in most cases that is what it is. I can't guilt myself over what amounts to a freak accident, especially when the drugs I'm not paying for are commercially available.
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Posted 7/7/14

MysticGon wrote:
Just like I'm not responsible for what my employee buys with their salary, I'm not responsible for what they put in their system. You don't shove your views into a closet based on factors you have no control over. You can only focus on the one's you do. If a doctor bursts into my office and says "quick, your employee will die unless you buy them this contraceptive" I'll tell them to get lost. I don't view the drug as a life saving one, but rather a life-inhibiting one, and in most cases that is what it is. I can't guilt myself over what amounts to a freak accident, especially when the drugs I'm not paying for are commercially available.


*applauds* I couldn't agree more on some of these statements. You can't control what your employee puts into their system even though many places try (such as with drug screening). You can't focus on that which you can not control but should focus on that which you can. That is why this is such a hot button topic, because folks think they do, and often actually do have control over their own healthcare, and may even have some control over the healthcare of another.
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Posted 7/7/14

Bullbound wrote:


MysticGon wrote:
Just like I'm not responsible for what my employee buys with their salary, I'm not responsible for what they put in their system. You don't shove your views into a closet based on factors you have no control over. You can only focus on the one's you do. If a doctor bursts into my office and says "quick, your employee will die unless you buy them this contraceptive" I'll tell them to get lost. I don't view the drug as a life saving one, but rather a life-inhibiting one, and in most cases that is what it is. I can't guilt myself over what amounts to a freak accident, especially when the drugs I'm not paying for are commercially available.


*applauds* I couldn't agree more on some of these statements. You can't control what your employee puts into their system even though many places try (such as with drug screening). You can't focus on that which you can not control but should focus on that which you can. That is why this is such a hot button topic, because folks think they do, and often actually do have control over their own healthcare, and may even have some control over the healthcare of another.


It's a difficult discussion to have, but it can be broken down. What will happen now is anyone's guess. This is just a proxy battle for the age old abortion debate.
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Posted 7/7/14
I never thought of it that way, but on reflection I can see how that holds water.
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Posted 7/8/14 , edited 7/8/14
I find it fascinating that any company should be forced to pay for anyones healthcare in the first place.
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Posted 7/8/14

Iconodule wrote:

I find it fascinating that any company should be forced to pay for anyones healthcare in the first place.


We have it as employee compensation over here, and we don't have a universal healthcare option in the United States. That's why.

Also, US companies in their oligopoly days were not above hiring gunmen and at one point called in the US military to take care of unionizers, which one event ended up burning the minors wives and children alive when they set fire to their tents. This makes the current trends of continually deregulated business in the US particularly worrisome to me.
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Posted 7/8/14

MopZ wrote:


Iconodule wrote:

I find it fascinating that any company should be forced to pay for anyones healthcare in the first place.


We have it as employee compensation over here, and we don't have a universal healthcare option in the United States. That's why.

Also, US companies in their oligopoly days were not above hiring gunmen and at one point called in the US military to take care of unionizers, which one event ended up burning the minors wives and children alive when they set fire to their tents. This makes the current trends of continually deregulated business in the US particularly worrisome to me.


Seems like a crappy system if it forces people to pay for something they don't want to pay for. ( I am not advocating universal healthcare).
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Posted 7/8/14 , edited 7/8/14

Iconodule wrote:


MopZ wrote:


Iconodule wrote:

I find it fascinating that any company should be forced to pay for anyones healthcare in the first place.


We have it as employee compensation over here, and we don't have a universal healthcare option in the United States. That's why.

Also, US companies in their oligopoly days were not above hiring gunmen and at one point called in the US military to take care of unionizers, which one event ended up burning the minors wives and children alive when they set fire to their tents. This makes the current trends of continually deregulated business in the US particularly worrisome to me.


Seems like a crappy system if it forces people to pay for something they don't want to pay for. ( I am not advocating universal healthcare).


It's one of the many things that were put in place to protect employees from abusive practices at their employment and to make them socially responsible for unsafe working conditions and such. The workplace became safer, employees were happy and healthy, and businesses prospered while claims that it would bankrupt businesses were made. Prosperity requires certain investments, pretty much.
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Posted 7/8/14 , edited 7/8/14

Iconodule wrote:
Seems like a crappy system if it forces people to pay for something they don't want to pay for. ( I am not advocating universal healthcare).

What is a better alternative, then? Employers are required to invest in their employees to help limit and prevent the abuses that have transpired in the past. While the conditions faced in the US by many employees were not unusual, they did lead to a large cornerstone of employee protection. This was further shaped by "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness..etc."

The health care options by most employers are not exactly comprehensive nor complete. Those companies that offer better comprehensive health care and investment packages are able to draw the better employees as the value of the compensation is more desirable. However, why don't the businesses just pay the employees that same expense as part of their wages? This actually comes down to a few different issues. [Edit: These are just some of them as there are extensive research papers about the topic of why it is good/bad to provide health insurance. Those that are against it are forced to find other methods for insuring the workforce to prevent economic downturn.]

1) Cost of care. Health insurance and health care costs in the US for the level of care provided as measured by the many accreditation boards and consumer watch groups, is very high. While there is medical tourism by some to take advantage of the free market enterprise in the US, those experiences are far from the average in terms of quality. The cost is typical though, and partly why there is a need for health insurance by the majority of the citizens. However, how do you afford the cost of treatment and care when a single visit to the emergency room back in 2012 cost an average of over $1200? (ref: Washington Post "An average ER visit costs more than an average month’s rent") Keep in mind that back in 2013, when Money Watch did their analysis of housing costs, the US averaged $1231 per month for a place to rent.

2) Cost of coverage So, the solution is group funding which is how many insurance companies function. They take in hundreds of thousands of subscribers (usually more than that) and pool all the money together. That money then pays for medical bills as per the agreed upon terms between the insurance company and provider, as well as the limitation between client and insurance company. The number of people paying less than they gain is such a small percent, that the insurance company is then able to show a profit, pay for administrative fees, pay wages to their employees, etc. Now, with a large pool of money the insurance companies don't have to charge much, right? Wrong. They must be able to meet all of their obligations at any time, should something happen where they are required to make maximum payments all at the same time. This is partly why the cost of insurance plans has been historically higher for individuals. When an employer is able to buy in volume, the insurance company knows that statistically they can charge less per person because they will be gaining a revenue stream that is larger. Get rid of those groups though, and you are left with individual, private insurance where those who may not need the insurance are not likely to buy it. Those that are buying it, are those whom will likely need it and as such the risk to the insurance company rises, leading to increasing premiums.

3) Behavior Folks would likely be very happy to have more spendable money. But, how many Americans are wise enough to save for retirement and other expenses? Sadly, the rates of bankruptcy, debt, and increased life span leave many folks without the money they need later in life. This was a driving force behind the creation of the Social Security Act which was intended to supplement the pensions of those that retired and were living longer than expected. It was not intended to be a sole source of income but...well, we know where that went.

4) Company Expense With increasing medical costs and complexity of care, the providing of medical insurance is also attractive to employers. When an employee calls out sick, they may still be eligible for pay, you lost that individual's productivity, and hopefully can pull someone else in. However, how long can you afford to function without that person? To much time passes, and the employer must train a replacement. That time spent training is lost productivity since they are not actively making the employer any money nor adding value to anything. By investing in the employee's health and keeping them healthy, the employer is then able to maintain productivity without incurring additional costs. Yes, there is some cost for the insurance but it is much less than if they didn't supply any.

For these reasons and more, the mandated providing of healthcare to some employees (not all) is required. It is an additional expense with benefits for all parties involved (as odd as that may sound).
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