Why Hobby Lobby isn't 'hypocritical'

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  • southmtnman Provo, UT
    April 4, 2014 2:55 p.m.

    In all these clashes of opinion, it is easy for everyone to lace their comments with a touch of hypocrisy. Beware of counterfeit intelligence, which exhibits chronic hypocrisy.

  • Counter Intelligence Salt Lake City, UT
    April 4, 2014 8:38 a.m.

    1) Birth Control is widely available and cheap

    2) You can buy it yourself easily without help

    3) If you expect someone else to buy it - then you cannot credibly complain when they insert their morality into the decision - you inserted them

    4) It doesn't matter if you deem their morality to be hypocritical, irrational or completely bogus; They have a right to their morality and you are pushing something you can cheaply and easily do yourself onto them

    5) If you are advocating government power to push onto someone else a decision you can cheaply and easily perform yourself - then you are the perpetrator, not the victim

    6) If you believe unions have freedom of speech (because they generally agree with you) but corporations do not (because they generally do not agree with you), then you are a hypocrite

    7) If you agree with the courts that corporations can have a race because minority owned businesses can sue when they are racially discriminated against, but you do not believe that corporations can have a religion - then you are a hypocrite.

    Most of these posts are far more hypocritical than Hobby Lobby

  • nonceleb Salt Lake City, UT
    April 3, 2014 8:53 p.m.

    Hypocrisy? Yes. Many environmentalists, animal rights advocates, or Vegans and Vegetarians, can find investments which do not violate their beliefs. Information is easily available and not difficult to access if one is really devoted to their morality. Some investments even advertise their having a particular moral, social and economic ideal. I would also say they are guilty of heresy. Here is a case where money trumps their moral principles. Ignorance (saying most people do not know what they are invested in) is no excuse.

  • Noodlekaboodle Poplar Grove, UT
    April 3, 2014 6:06 p.m.

    @Casey See
    But that isn't what those drugs actually do. The morning after pill is a large dose of birth control. All it does is stop an egg from dropping if it hasn't already, if you take the morning after pill, and you already have a fertilized egg inside of you, you still are pregnant. And IUD's do the same thing, just for a couple of years instead of a one time deal like the morning after pill. They in no way are abortions.

  • Casey See FLOWER MOUND, TX
    April 3, 2014 3:38 p.m.

    The big difference here is that ObamaCare requires all health plans offered by a company to provide contraceptives. If they don't then they don't qualify. HL founders and still managing the company oppose the use of two types of contraceptives because of how they work. One, is the morning after pill, because it specifically prevents a fertilized egg from being able to grow and IUDs that some believe does the same thing i.e. aborts the fertilized egg.

    These are both mandated birth control options by ObamaCare.

    This is what HL is fighting being forced to provide these birth control options in all of their health plans.

  • Crusader Layton, UT
    April 3, 2014 3:28 p.m.

    I had to buy some picture frames today. Because Hobby Lobby is trying to take choice away from their employees, I drove a mile past Hobby Lobby and went to Micheals.

  • anotherview SLO, CA
    April 3, 2014 3:03 p.m.


    Is anybody buying this line?

    Hobby Lobby is providing "access" in both cases.

    Hobby Lobby isn't required to administer the health plans which provide coverage to emergency contraceptives nor are they required to pay for the contraceptive coverage. Their only objection can be they are providing access for their employees to get coverage with emergency contraception.

    Isn't the 401k the same situation? They are providing access for their employees to invest in companies making emergency contraceptives.

    The emperor has no clothes.
    We now see Hobby Lobby for who they truly are.

  • Karen R. Houston, TX
    April 3, 2014 2:24 p.m.

    @ IsaacsTM

    I think you hit the nail on the head. I think what the HL owners are actually fighting is a law they don't like. It just so happens that religion is the only weapon with which to do this. And they take themselves and the "purity" thing pretty seriously so it nicely serves all of their purposes.

    I would be much more interested to hear a defense of their business with China than what investments a convoluted 401K portfolio might include. I think a much brighter line can be drawn between their money and abortions of Chinese fetuses than can be drawn between insurance coverage, a particular kind of contraceptive, and its effect on a fertilized egg.

    Bottom line: I don't doubt that they are devout Christians. I doubt that this is about protecting their right to practice this devotion. I think it's about using their religion to fight a battle in which religion is the only argument that will be entertained. Whether or not this is hypocritical - or cynical - depends on whether they're consciously aware of what they're doing.

  • apfpilot fishers, IN
    April 3, 2014 2:16 p.m.

    @IsaacsTM 2 years ago they covered 2 of the drugs they currently object to in their plan. If anything this compounds their hypocrisy.

  • apfpilot fishers, IN
    April 3, 2014 2:15 p.m.

    @GiuseppeG they provide the the menu of choices for their employees to choose from? As employees of the company the greens also most likely invest in the funds themselves? They are also objecting to IUDs (which isn't a morning after pill) do I need to go on?

  • GiuseppeG Murray, Utah
    April 3, 2014 1:48 p.m.

    So, let's see if I have this correct. Hobby Lobby provides financial remuneration to their employees without directing how their employees spend it. Hobby Lobby also does not want to be forced to pay for free abortifacient contraception (assuming that means morning after pill). I haven't heard of an effort by Hobby Lobby to attempt to restrict its employees from spending the $15 - $60 to purchase their own morning after pill or the $15/month or so for regular contraception, although ODannyBoy seems to think they have.

    So someone please explain to me again how letting the employees invest their money in whatever they want and letting them choose to spend their money on what they want is hypocritical?

  • Schnee Salt Lake City, UT
    April 3, 2014 1:41 p.m.

    “The menu of choices is provided not by the employer but by the administrator of the plan, offering a wide range of mutual funds — which are most commonly indexes invested in the breadth of the market.”

    Health insurance provides a menu of service choices (checkups, birth control, surgery, etc) that it can be used on, provided not by the employer but by the administrator of the health insurance plan. It's up to the employee to effectively designate where those insurance dollars end up going.

  • Henry Drummond San Jose, CA
    April 3, 2014 1:31 p.m.

    I've afraid the blog quoted in the article leaves out important information. Hobby Lobby did have a choice of which funds to offer. They could have chosen an investment firm that offers “faith-based investing” that avoids these type of companies, but they didn’t.

    Does that make Hobby Lobby "hypocrites" or just careless? It is ironic that in an area where they do have control, they didn't exercise it.

    Nonetheless this is an important case. It will be interesting to see how the Supreme Court writes their opinion so they don't cause more problems than they are trying to solve.

  • liberty or ...? Ogden, UT
    April 3, 2014 1:28 p.m.

    People can also work for a company that aligns more with their ideals rather than forcing the business to change theirs? respect is a two way street. Its amazing to me how everyone of the above comments is about how they should be catered to but show little interest in showing it. I am against alcohol because of my beliefs but I still served it as a manager for a restraunt BUT I also respected the rights of some of my employees who didn't wish to and did it for them. I deal with hypocrites of faith and atheists persuassions all the time I have to do business with people who are less than moral by my standards. As much as I wouldn't force you to stop supporting the establishments and causes you adhere to I'm not going to force Hobby Lobby to abandon theirs. If you don't like it you don't have to associate with them. We are a world of hypocrites such as planned parenthood and secularists who chime about human rights(oh the irony)I won't force them to change their position just respect Hobby lobby to do the same.

  • Hello there Pleasant Grove, UT
    April 3, 2014 1:00 p.m.

    @mcdugall. "Inorganic beings" hold many beliefs. How much $$$ is given to political parties each year? How is religion a concept beholden to people but concepts such as: gun rights, gay rights, environment rights, etc. aren't?

  • IsaacsTM Huntingtown, MD
    April 3, 2014 12:56 p.m.

    I don't remember anyone challenging Hobby Lobby as hypocritical a few years ago before Obamacare kicked in. Do any of you think they were back then? Where were you then?? They provided health care insurance to their employees and were humming a long just fine - you probably never even knew of them. Obamacare kicks in and forces them to provide insurance coverage for certain things and they said no we like our current plans. NOW all of a sudden they are anti women(ala Barbara Boxer), religious hypocrites and horrible people. Do you not realize that they are running their business the exact same way they were a few years ago? What changed? Them? No, big government has stepped in and now all of you express your two minutes of hate against them. It's almost like entrapment. You are being stirred up in your hatred.

  • vern001 Castle Rock, CO
    April 3, 2014 12:55 p.m.

    So, employees should be free to make whatever investment they want to in their 401K because it's their money they're spending, not Hobby Lobby's, but when it comes to their health plan, then it's actually Hobby Lobby's money?

    That's TOTALLY different!

  • Noodlekaboodle Poplar Grove, UT
    April 3, 2014 12:49 p.m.

    So using a third party company to administer your 401K that invests in companies that make birth control is different than paying a third party to administer you health insurance plan, that covers birth control? That doesn't make sense to me.

  • Vanceone Provo, UT
    April 3, 2014 12:40 p.m.

    The thing with Hobby Lobby is simple: Who has a right of conscience--the government or the people? Hobby Lobby is told that they MUST provide contraception, or they are oppressing women. 1st, what female would not get contraception if they wanted it? It's not like you can't get a pack of condoms in practically every store. Are women incapable of actually buying their own contraception? Pregnancy tests are not covered either, or aspirin or tylenol.

    Second, what parts of the 1st amendment are negotiable? Corporations have the right to speech in America. But not the rest of the 1st Amendment?
    Third, the government is actively punishing Christians: look at the Little Sisters of the Poor. Obama is trying to tell a bunch of Catholic Nuns that they should pay for someone else's immoral behavior. Why should any of us be forced to pay for someone else's sexual wantonness? If they want to risk having sex, they should pay for it themselves. Not me, not Hobby Lobby, not the Little Sisters of the Poor.

  • JoCo Ute Grants Pass, OR
    April 3, 2014 12:30 p.m.

    I read the column and just because Ben Domenech says Hobby Lobby is hypocritical doesn't make it so. Of course they are hypocritical! Claiming that investing in mutual funds is just a "menu choice" that employees make based on a list provided by their (financial) plan and not the employer somehow makes buying funds that manufacture contraceptives different from employees making a choice from a list provided by a medical plan is simply wrong.

    The only difference here is that Hobby Lobby has (in their minds) more say in a limited list of medical options than they do in a very long and complicated list of financial options. IF Hobby Lobby could force a Christian Index Fund on their employees they would.

    Hobby Lobby buy an extensive assortment of product from China, where the number of children is limited by law and abortion is a regular state funded practice. They seem to have no moral problem with supporting a nation that is as un-Christian as they get. As long as it contributes to the bottom line.

  • Janet Ontario, OR
    April 3, 2014 12:22 p.m.

    Seriously? I would bet the vast majority of people who have a 401K, or even buy mutual funds, have no idea where they're invested. I do know people who are interested in environmental issues, or against tobacco and alcohol, or opposed to the fur trade, etc. who take the time to look into the details of their portfolios. If the owners of HL are so opposed to contraception, it was their responsibility to see what the company's 401K was involved with. The CEO had no idea what the clerk on Aisle 2 was choosing as a 401K investment? Oh, come on!

  • mcdugall Murray, UT
    April 3, 2014 12:16 p.m.

    I'm still wondering how someone can actually argue that an inorganic being can actually hold religious beliefs. Religion is a concept beholden to people not corporations, hence protect the religious rights of people but not corporations.

  • BYU Track Star Los Angeles, CA
    April 3, 2014 12:11 p.m.

    PLease remind me to Boycott The Hobby Lobby on priciple. But, then again they may refuse to serve me because I am a heretical, Temple going Mormon.

  • ODannyBoy Sandy, Utah
    April 3, 2014 11:57 a.m.

    Then perhaps the employees should be able to make their own birth control choices as well - as part of the company plan. I'm going with hypocritical.