I’ve seen a lot of mistaken rhetoric online–even by otherwise conservative Christians–about contraceptives and the Hobby Lobby ruling by the Supreme Court. I’d like to just highlight some facts that many seem to be missing, just so everyone has correct information as they discuss this important case.
The mandate that businesses pay for contraceptives for their employees is not actually part of the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare); it was added by Kathleen Sebelius after the law was passed.
Non-profits already have an exemption so they do not have to pay for contraceptives, and Obama mandated that insurance companies provide them for free in such cases. He could, in theory, do the same thing now with this case. In other words, no woman is being prevented from free contraceptives (whether or not that is ideal).
Of 20 available FDA approved contraceptives, Hobby Lobby still provides 16 for their employees. The only contraceptives they do not provide are those that are abortive. In other words, contrary to what many are saying, employees of Hobby Lobby are not being kept from free contraceptives (again, whether or not that is their “right”).
Hobby Lobby was already providing these non-abortive contraceptives to employees before the Obamacare mandate. This is no example of religious fanatics who don’t believe in contraception at all.1 It is a matter of funding abortions.
If, God forbid, an employee of Hobby Lobby wanted an abortive contraceptive, she could still purchase it herself. In other words, the SCOTUS ruling does not prohibit women from using even abortive contraceptives and her right to choose kill innocent life, as horrific as that is.
SCOTUS based their religious freedom ruling not on the Constitution, but actually on a law signed by Bill Clinton.
To summarize, this case was not about the right to contraceptives or the ability to get free contraceptives. It was about forcing companies to fund abortive contraceptives against their religious convictions.
Scott Aniol is the founder and Executive Director of Religious Affections Ministries. He is on faculty at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, where he teaches courses in ministry, worship, hymnology, aesthetics, culture, and philosophy. He has written several books, dozens of articles, and speaks around the country in churches and conferences. He is an elder in his church in Fort Worth, TX where he resides with his wife and two children.