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Hobby Lobby Goes Before The Supreme Court

Hobby Lobby

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I know there has already been a ton of writing on Hobby Lobby and the case its lawyers will be presenting to the Supreme Court. Yes, my friends, that happens today. It is time for the highest court in our land to hear a case that should have never had to be brought against our government. After the Court hears the case, David Green will learn sometime in June or July if he will be able to continue operating his business according to his Christian values, or if he is told those values have no place in the business world.

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David Green started Hobby Lobby in his garage and it has grown since that time. He now has 602 stores across America and he is a billionaire. He has no problem telling you his business is a success because of God and he gives liberally to churches and other religious organizations. When asked about bringing his religion to work, he made this simple, yet profound statement.

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“I don’t care if you’re in business or out of business, God owns it,” says Green. “How do I separate it? Well, it’s God’s in church and it’s mine here? I have purpose in church, but I don’t have purpose over here? You can’t have a belief system on Sunday and not live it the other six days.”

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David Green believes every word contained in those sentences. He follows his Christian beliefs closely in his business. Every store closes on Sunday, giving his employees time to go to church, if they so desire. He practices what he preaches, even if he isn’t a preacher. How successful has Hobby Lobby been? I’ll let David Green tell his own story, in the form of a letter defending his business practices.

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Conservative Infidel – When my family and I started our company 40 years ago, we were working out of a garage on a $600 bank loan, assembling miniature picture frames. Our first retail store wasn’t much bigger than most people’s living rooms, but we had faith that we would succeed if we lived and worked according to God’s word.

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From there, Hobby Lobby has become one of the nation’s largest arts and crafts retailers, with more than 500 locations in 41 states. Our children grew up into fine business leaders, and today we run Hobby Lobby together, as a family.

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We’re Christians, and we run our business on Christian principles. I’ve always said that the first two goals of our business are (1) to run our business in harmony with God’s laws, and (2) to focus on people more than money. And that’s what we’ve tried to do.

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We close early so our employees can see their families at night. We keep our stores closed on Sundays, one of the week’s biggest shopping days, so that our workers and their families can enjoy a day of rest.

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We believe that it is by God’s grace that Hobby Lobby has endured, and he has blessed us and our employees. We’ve not only added jobs in a weak economy, we’ve raised wages for the past four years in a row. Our full-time employees start at 80% above minimum wage.

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But now, our government threatens to change all of that.

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A new government healthcare mandate says that our family business MUST provide what I believe are abortion-causing drugs as part of our health insurance.

Being Christians, we don’t pay for drugs that might cause abortions, which means that we don’t cover emergency contraception, the morning-after pill or the week-after pill. We believe doing so might end a life after the moment of conception, something that is contrary to our most important beliefs.

It goes against the Biblical principles on which we have run this company since day one.

If we refuse to comply, we could face $1.3 million PER DAY in government fines.

Our government threatens to fine job creators in a bad economy.

Our government threatens to fine a company that’s raised wages four years running.

Our government threatens to fine a family for running its business according to its beliefs. It’s not right. I know people will say we ought to follow the rules; that it’s the same for everybody. But that’s not true.

The government has exempted thousands of companies from this mandate, for reasons of convenience or cost. But it won’t exempt them for reasons of religious belief.

So, Hobby Lobby and my family are forced to make a choice. With great reluctance, we filed a lawsuit today, represented by the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, asking a federal court to stop this mandate before it hurts our business.

We don’t like to go running into court, but we no longer have a choice. We believe people are more important than the bottom line and that honoring God is more important than turning a profit.

My family has lived the American dream. We want to continue growing our company and providing great jobs for thousands of employees, but the government is going to make that much more difficult.

The government is forcing us to choose between following our faith and following the law. I say that’s a choice no American and no American business should have to make.

The government cannot force you to follow laws that go against your fundamental religious belief. They have exempted thousands of companies but will not except Christian organizations including the Catholic church.

Since you will not see this in the liberal media, please pass this on to all your contacts.

Where David Green and Hobby Lobby are running afoul of the government has everything to do with ObamaCare. Because of the open-ended way that train wreck is written, the Obama administration has written and rewritten regulations as they see the need. Contained in those regulations is a rule that businesses have to pay for insurance that provides birth control. Let me be clear. David Green is not opposed to birth control, although that would be his right. What he is opposed to is things like Plan B, which is nothing more than an abortion in pill form. Since he is strongly pro-life, David Green has no desire or plans to help pay for what is, essentially, an abortion.

I would not dare predict how the Supreme Court will rule. If I get the itch to do that, all I have to do is remember how the Supreme Court managed to save ObamaCare in its convoluted ruling and changing definitions. That’s enough to keep me away from that exercise. Suffice it to say, I will not be surprised to see Hobby Lobby lose their appeal.

The case will likely hinge on what the Supreme Court decides about business owners applying their religion to their business. Liberals are in an uproar against Hobby Lobby, saying David Green should not be allowed to escape the ObamaCare regulations because of his religion. They are making the claim that his religious beliefs have no place in practice at his business. Along that same line of thought, consider this.

Was it not back in the 1960’s when liberals started their plans to remove God from the public school system. They have fairly well accomplished that goal and we can see how that has affected our schools and the children they are supposed to be educating. At every turn, Christians are expected to leave their religious beliefs, some of them held very deeply, at the door when they leave the house and enter the public arena. No prayer at school functions. A child can not even say grace over their meal without offending someone. A co-worker could very well be upset if they see you pray silently, thanking God for your food and your health.

Those same tactics are now being used against Christian business owners. They are expected to leave their Christian beliefs at their house, entering the business world and acting as if they know nothing about God. Heaven forbid they show their faith by allowing those beliefs to guide them in their business practices. So many people seem to think that the First Amendment does not apply to Christian business owners. To anyone who believes that, I would refer you to David Green’s statement quoted earlier in this post.

It really is that simple. It should be a clear-cut case of allowing religious freedom to continue in America. It doesn’t matter if David Green is making a profit or not, it should be his right to conduct his business as he sees fit. If the ruling goes against Hobby Lobby, it will be, instead, a clear-cut case of pushing God even further out of the public view and out of America. That will be a sad time, indeed.

About LD Jackson

LD Jackson has written 2053 posts in this blog.

Founder and author of the political and news commentary blog Political Realities. I have always loved to write, but never have I felt my writing was more important than in this present day. If I have changed one mind or impressed one American about the direction our country is headed, then I will consider my endeavors a success. I take the tag line on this blog very seriously. Above all else, in search of the truth.

  • Excellent post my friend. You are correct in saying that the government (Hussein Obama, muslim) is attempting to remove God from America.

    Therefore I hate to say this, but I believe the Supreme Court will again poke a stick in the heart of Christianity and rule against Hobby Lobby. I pray this does not happen, but when they ruled 5-4 in favor of Obamacare I felt we were doomed. Especially after seeing Chief Justice Roberts ruling in favor of Obamacare.

    I pray for a miracle Larry.

    • As I stated in my post, I have no confidence the Supreme Court will do the right thing. The ObamaCare ruling should have went the other way, but Roberts rewrote the law’s definition of a couple of words, just so he could rule in its favor. That does not bode well for Christians, I am afraid.

  • I said the other day on my blog that we’re probably a generation away from the outright persecution of Christians in this country. If Hobby Lobby loses the persecution begins immediately. If Christians cannot follow God in their business then there is no telling what government can force us to do in order to feed our families and clothe our children.

    • You are exactly right, Leo. The government seems to be taking an active role to root out Christianity and those of us who follow its precepts. It seems to get worse with every passing day.

  • EstablishmentByProxy

    Perhaps authentic Christians should have been given an exemption from the law in its entirety, like Amish or ‘native’ Americans whom remain free… No, instead let’s put a gun to the head of those Christians since their exemption could well doom the statist takeover of all things medical.

    BTW – love the succinct Obamacare enforcement sign!

    • That’s something I didn’t mention in my post. If Hobby Lobby wins this case, it will certainly threaten the government’s attempt to take over every aspect of the health care system. We can’t have that, now can we?

      Yeah, I thought the ObamaCare enforcement sign was a neat idea. I found it on another website and borrowed it shamelessly.

  • Sir Publius

    Perhaps I’m being too optimistic, and of course no one can know for sure, but I think the Greens are gonna win this. I’ve been keeping track of what the left is saying about this and I think many of them even suspect the Greens will win, though of course they despise the notion. And it wouldn’t surprise me if it was not only a 5-4 decision but a 6-3 one. It’s a shame it had to be taken this far. We’ll just have to wait and see though. If the Greens lose, this country is in deeper trouble than I thought.

    • I hope you are right. I do know the rumblings from today’s proceedings seem to suggest the justices are divided on the issue. I just hope Justice Roberts doesn’t start changing definitions again.

  • I have long said that the left will not stop until it is Christians who are in the closet. Should this case go against the Greens our nation will be taking a huge step toward that goal of the left.

    Most people today are ignorant about the founding of our country and why people came here in the first place. The freedom to practice religion as one sees fit was a primary motivation and something our Founding Fathers attempted to protect with the First Amendment. That this travesty of a case should even have to be in court is reason enough for our Founding Fathers to be rolling in their graves.

    • I am afraid you are right. What we call freedom of religion, they call cramming our religion down their throat. They want us to sit down and shut up, as if we have no right to express our religion in the way we live and conduct our lives and business. I’ll say it like this. If our religion does not influence our lives in a positive way, then it’s not much of a religion.

  • It will be interesting to see how SCOTUS rules on this. From what I have read five of the justices are skeptical about forcing businesses to provide insurance with birth control, but we heard the same thing when Obamacare first made it to the Supreme Court so all bets are off.

    • I’ll not count these chickens before they are hatched.

  • “He has no problem telling you his business is a success because of God . . .”

    And here I thought the “Gospel of Wealth” died in the Gilded Age. It’s pretty ridiculous to think that God would “bless” him with a massive fortune whilst allowing some of his other more devout, more pious followers to suffer the horrors of the world.

    It’s also fairly profane that he would assert that God somehow has something to do with his material wealth. I mean what is this, Greek mythology? He pleases God and God rewards him with bountiful riches? C’mon people, you’re better than that.

    As for the topic at hand, sure it’s his right to oppose plan B. But I can almost guarantee you that this guy has never visited a welfare office. If anything, plan B should be pushed more so that the irresponsible would-be single moms–or the single moms who find themselves on their 5th “oops” baby–can stop creating more lives to suffer in this world.

    And believe you me: their children will only know misery and suffering.

    • Sorry, but you are way off target here. This is not the “Gospel of Wealth”, as you put it, but rather a man who has tried to follow God’s precepts in his business practices. He employees over 16,000 people, from a humble beginning in his garage. He has provided them health care insurance long before ObamaCare and its mandates was created. His corporate headquarters in Oklahoma City has a free health clinic for the employees that work there.

      I have no problem believing God has blessed David Green, not because the man is something special, but because he has tried to follow what God wanted him to do. That doesn’t happen in every case, but it seems to have happened in the case of Hobby Lobby.

      You have came to the wrong place if you think I will ever get behind something like Plan B. It is nothing more than an abortion in a pill and you already know how I feel about abortion. We’ve already had that discussion. And I’m not at all sure what David Green’s lack of visits to a welfare office has to do with anything.

  • “And I’m not at all sure what David Green’s lack of visits to a welfare office has to do with anything.”

    Let me tell you a quick story. I work directly with the welfare population here in Columbus, OH. My company is contracted through Franklin County to provide volunteer work sites for people who receive cash assistance–essentially we help unemployed people receiving welfare get their monthly required work hours.

    Well, the other day one of my clients calls me and tells me that she’s been sick the past few days. She couldn’t turn in the required job search training stuff to me in order for her cash assistance application to be accepted (thus turning on her cash assistance). She is a single mom, and she has two children, one of them is 1.5 years old. She tells me that she just found out that she’s pregnant, and that’s why she’s been sick.

    A lesser man in my position would have become instantly depressed when one considers the implications. Another welfare baby doesn’t mean just more burden on the American tax payer. It represents another generation of suffering. Her children will suffer because she, herself, is incapable of being a responsible human being.

    In this case, plan B would be merciful. It might surprise you to know that personally, I’m pro-life. But I’m also a pragmatist and a realist. Not using plan B in that case would only cause more suffering.

    As fr the Gospel of Wealth, the concept is as you said it: you do things according to the word of God, follow his precepts, and you will gain some sort of earthly wealth for your trouble. I’m not saying that this guy is bad or anything, but my point was that there are *plenty* of other people who are likely even more pious than him, and they get only more misery for their trouble.

    • I can not answer your question of why David Green has been blessed and some others have not been. That is not for me or you to decide. That does not take away from the fact that God does bless those who follow the path he has set before them. Those blessings make take a form other than financial wealth, but blessings they will be.

      I understand your point about Plan B and how the mother seems to be incapable of being a responsible person. That does not mean her unborn child should be murdered.

      As for both of your points, I fail to see what they have to do with anything concerning David Green’s desire to follow his Christian beliefs and not provide contraception that kills a fetus. His wealth and the irresponsibility of some mothers are not the point of contention before the Supreme Court.

  • You’re right. I got a little off-topic with that. My appologies.

    My guess is that the Supreme Court will not rule in his favor. Just because HE is religious, doesn’t mean he gets a religious exemption for his business. Unless Hobby Lobby is a religious institution, or unless it is directly affiliated with a specific religious institution, then he can’t really impose his religious beliefs on his employees.

    Imposing one’s religious beliefs on another free person is not okay just because the person doing the imposing is not a government official.

  • Sir Publius

    Jack, When the first amendment guarantees the free exercise of religion, it doesn’t have an addendum that if you own a business, you have to check you religion at the door and run it in a way that goes against you religion. Businesses and corporations are RUN by people, and they shouldn’t be forced to COMPLY with something against their religion, or give up their business.

    This country has a proud and CLEAR history of religious exemptions, at least when its people valued religion. Now, people see exemptions as unfair and want to eradicate them, and where they can, religion. For many people, religion is something you should do in church or your basement, but it stops there. They believe in freedom FROM religion, which doesn’t exist in our system. Never has. But more and more people believe in it.

    Exemptions aren’t new. The new thing is the Obamacare mandate. This is a privately owned business. No one is forced to work there. And those people who DO work there can use as much contraception as they want! No one is forcing anyone to do anything here…except the people TRYING to force someone who doesn’t believe in a product to offer it…a product WIDELY available everywhere. Liberals claim to be tolerant and pluralistic.

    If they were for pluralism, really, they would be for people’s right to practice their religion, and not try and force those people to comply with their worldview and demand something from them they don’t believe in. I love real tolerant pluralistic liberals. I really do. They are in short supply though these days it seems.

  • EstablishmentByProxy

    After reading some astute observations RE today’s session before the court, I’m a little more tempered about the practical outcome of a win. Even that could be narrowly shaped/tailored to satisfy this specific case while leaving much question (or difficult qualification) for those that would choose the same. Let’s hope for something simple/clear and not the promise of much future litigation on the ‘minutia’.

    • The Supreme Court is well known for doing exactly what you have described. They may rule in favor of Hobby Lobby, but leave the future wide open for other cases.

  • Sir Publius

    In case anyone is interested, I found what I think is a great article on this issue. There’s nothing really that novel in it I don’t think, but it certainly put forward pretty much every single objection I have to this mandate and had many keen insights on the issue, made in an extremely articulate way…at least in my opinion: