Remember when Hobby Lobby won the court case that they CAN discriminate and not offer certain health insurance benefits because of "religious" beliefs? I had blogged here it was only the beginning, and we would see our freedoms further eroded under the guise of "freedom of religion". What it really amounts to are bigots and sexists finding ways to control women, gays, and other people they just don't happen to like much.
Think I'm joking? Well, yesterday a federal judge granted the Hastings Chrysler Center (a car dealership) in Hastings, MN (the state I live in) the right to decide not to cover "certain" forms of contraception because they are against his religious beliefs.
I'm sad, angry, and scared. Next it will be pharmacies not filling prescriptions. Or a nurse in a hospital withholding treatment. Or anything. Because, truly, now that a couple of businesses have paved the way, anyone can put their personal beliefs in motion and ask to be granted immunity from providing the things Americans are supposed to have the rights to.
It isn't far reaching to assume a Jehovah Witness business owner could be granted the right to exclude blood transfusions from employee insurance. Or a bigot business owner to quote some Bible verse about gays to the court and be granted the right to not cover drugs for HIV.
Don't people see what's happening right under our noses? While people bitch and moan about how prayer in school should be a big issue, or who should have the right to marry, rights are being stolen from us and we aren't doing a damn thing about it.
The far right has been very savvy about getting people who have no business voting for the party who is only interested in the very wealthy to actually vote for them. How? By getting them frothing at the mouth about small things like the prayer in school, all the while making sure freedoms we already have are steadily being taken away. Just like with health care. They are dying to take away what little progress has been made, and will do everything possible to block single payer or even government health care. Why? Because they don't give a shit about people. They only care about making money, and they hide behind religion to make gullible people their puppets. They do it by acting like they care about being "Godly."
In reality, they could care less about prayer in school. But it gets religious nuts voting for them. They only care about abortion because they want to control women. If they did really care about human life, they'd want to support programs that actually help feed those children they're so gung-ho about seeing born.
It's all about power. And we're allowing them to gradually eat away at our freedom. One business, one blocked policy at a time.
If ever there were a day where flags should be flying at half mast, I'd say today would be the day.
America isn't losing its greatness because of a lack of belief in God. America is losing its greatness because we're allowing zealots to control us in the name of religion. Talk about taking the name of the Lord in vain. What a perfect example.
Caddy Rowland is a novelist and painter. Her social media links follow.
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