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January 11th, 2013
03:40 PM ET

Hobby Lobby finds way around $1.3-million-a-day Obamacare hit - for now

By Eric Marrapodi, CNN Belief Blog Editor

Washington (CNN) - By Friday, Hobby Lobby would have racked up $14.3 million in fines from the Internal Revenue Service for bucking Obamacare. But in keeping with the great American tax tradition, they may have found a loophole.

The company is facing $1.3 million a day in fines for each day it chooses not to comply with a piece of the Affordable Care Act that was set to trigger for them on January 1. The craft store chain announced in December that, because of religious objections, they would face the fines for not providing certain types of birth control through their company health insurance.

The penalty was set to go into effect on the day the company's new health care plan went into effect for the year.

Peter M. Dobelbower, general counsel for Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc. said in a statement released through the Becket Fund that, "Hobby Lobby discovered a way to shift the plan year for its employee health insurance, thus postponing the effective date of the mandate for several months."

The statement continued that "Hobby Lobby does not provide coverage for abortion-inducing drugs in its health care plan. Hobby Lobby will continue to vigorously defend its religious liberty and oppose the mandate and any penalties."

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Last month Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor rejected the company's appeal for a temporary relief from the steep fines while their case made its way through the lower courts.

Hobby Lobby announced a day after the ruling that it "will continue to provide health insurance to all qualified employees. To remain true to their faith, it is not their intention, as a company, to pay for abortion-inducing drugs."

In September, Hobby Lobby and affiliate Mardel, a Christian bookstore chain, sued the federal government for violating their owners' religious freedom and ability to freely exercise their religion.

The lawsuit says the companies' religious beliefs prohibit them from providing insurance coverage for abortion-inducing drugs. As of August 2012, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, dubbed Obamacare, requires employer-provided health care plans to provide "all Food and Drug Administration approved contraceptive methods, sterilization procedures, and patient education and counseling for all women with reproductive capacity," according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Churches and houses of worship are exempt from the regulation and a narrow exemption was added for nonprofit religious employers whose employees "primarily share its religious tenets" and who "primarily serve persons who share its religious tenets."

The Internal Revenue Service regulations now say that a group health care plan that "fails to comply" with the Affordable Care Act is subject to an "excise tax" of "$100 per day per individual for each day the plan does not comply with the requirement." It remains unclear how the IRS would implement and collect the excise tax.

A spokesperson for the Justice Department declined to comment on the high court's move last month.

White House officials have long said they believe they have struck an appropriate compromise between religious exemptions and women's health. The White House has not commented specifically on the Hobby Lobby case.

CNN’s Belief Blog: The faith angles behind the biggest stories

The Oklahoma City-based Hobby Lobby chain has more than 500 stores that employ 13,000 employees across 42 states, and takes in $2.6 billion in sales. It is still privately held by CEO and founder David Green and members of his family.

"The foundation of our business has been, and will continue to be strong values, and honoring the Lord in a manner consistent with biblical principles," a statement on the Hobby Lobby website reads, adding that one outgrowth of that is the store is closed on Sundays to give its employees a day of rest.

MORE BACKGROUND: Hobby Lobby faces millions in fines for bucking Obamacare

The Hobby Lobby case is just one of many before the courts over the religious exemption aspects of the law. The case represents by far the biggest for-profit group challenging the health care mandate.

Part of the reason Sotomayor rejected their appeal to the Supreme Court she wrote was because their case is still pending in the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver.

A spokesperson for the Becket Fund said on Friday a date has yet to be set for the case to be heard in the 10th Circuit.

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Belief • Church and state • Courts

soundoff (4,609 Responses)
  1. Seth Hill

    I'm not a Christian Scientist, but I believe they do not allow painkillers (or any physical medical treatment at all). So Hobby Lobby needs to not give any insurance for any painkillers, nor any physical medical treatment, to their employees.

    January 13, 2013 at 12:25 pm |
    • Marky

      Christian Science is not a "Christian" religion, nor are the owners of Hobby Lobby Christian Scientists. Lousy argument on your part.....

      January 13, 2013 at 2:44 pm |
    • G_Edwards

      The owners of HL aren't Christian Scientists. So your comment not surprisingly makes zero sense.

      .

      January 13, 2013 at 2:46 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      But if HL wins their case, what's to stop companies from claiming Christian Science as their religion and be able to flout the law? Hmmmm.

      January 13, 2013 at 2:50 pm |
  2. Jennymcb

    Let's just go to universal health coverage and stop the dicking around by everyone. I am another person that will avoid this store.
    When it is all said and done, the people paying for insurances would probably end up paying less if we took away employer insurance and made it universal for the whole country. How would we pay for it? Taxes on soda, cigarettes, fast food, and a retail tax. Wouldn't that be the fairest for all of us? Then we can shut down the argument of separation of church and state when it comes to the basic care of our citizens.

    January 13, 2013 at 12:22 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      I agree, and wish that had been possible.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:26 pm |
  3. KL

    What do you liberals not understand about Hobby Lobby being a "PRIVATE COMPANY" ? People can choose not to work their if they feel so wronged about their health insurance policy.

    January 13, 2013 at 12:19 pm |
    • bannister

      Exactly.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:22 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Are "private companies" allowed to do anything they wish? Since when, you simpleton? A private company doesn't get to hire children to work. It can't pay less than minimum wage. It cannot force employees to work without bathroom or meal breaks. What part of this do you not get? Private does NOT mean exempt from the laws that govern ALL companies that operate under the protection of the US.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:23 pm |
  4. Do the Right Thing

    My family and I used to shop at Hobby Lobby. Then we learned it is a fundamentalist, hypocritical, bigoted, right wing, evangelical, whackadoodle company. We immediately stopped shopping there. As good persons who have outgrown the need for religion, we simply cannot support such a hateful organization.

    January 13, 2013 at 12:18 pm |
    • Name*John

      Good. We won't miss you. Ten customers will take your place. Narrow minded loser!

      January 13, 2013 at 12:22 pm |
    • bannister

      I boycott anyone who uses the word "whackadoodle"

      January 13, 2013 at 12:23 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      What's wrong with whackadoodle? It's the truth.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:25 pm |
    • G_Edwards

      So you decided to fight hypocritical, bigoted, hateful people by being hypocritical, bigoted, and hateful.

      Got it.

      .

      January 13, 2013 at 12:28 pm |
    • Damocles

      What do you have against whackadoodle??

      January 13, 2013 at 12:28 pm |
    • Damocles

      If a company is hateful, bigoted, etc etc and you call them hateful and bigoted.... how is that being hateful and bigoted?

      January 13, 2013 at 12:29 pm |
    • Marky

      Your family probably shopped there very little, and there is nothing "right-wing whackadoodle" about this company. Of course, you have a right to shop wherever you want to, BUT so do many of the rest of us who see a company where people seem to enjoy their jobs and have a smile on their face, plus they have gotten raises when other companies have been saying they can't afford it, while their CEO makes more money than anyone can spend! I have decided that any religious overtones aside, I will do ALL my craft, framing, hobby, etc shopping there simply because the atmosphere is so much better, and I appreciate knowing their employees know they get at least one whole day off to spend time with their family and friends! I didn't even know this company was owned by Christians when I started shopping there, but the pleasant, friendly employees, and the nice atmosphere, reasonable prices and finding out how those employees really liked working for the company made me look into the origins of the company. Surely anyone would be impressed by what this family has accomplished, and how much they care about their employees. Not furnishing certain types of BC would never be a problem for me; what people expect from insurance is unbelievable. My daughter's insurance certainly doesn't pay for ADHD meds that are very necessary to her (and everyone around her), but she has to pay for them out of pocket, and she owns the company!! The insurance company makes that choice, and none of you are concerned about situations like that! Seems as if you pick and choose what to be offended about, based solely on the religious beliefs of a sole-proprietorship, and frankly, that is offensive in and of itself!

      January 13, 2013 at 12:40 pm |
    • Damocles

      @marky

      Wow, I certainly hope your endorsement check is on its way.

      I could picture the commercial to go along with what you were saying... the charming music, the smiling faces, the fades to black, maybe a flag waving proudly in the breeze. Touching.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:44 pm |
  5. JaneInMaine

    Hobby Lobby has just narrowed done the field of whom I buy from for my projects. No need to buy from them again.

    January 13, 2013 at 12:18 pm |
  6. Julie

    There are really two types of people who are resisting this. One is the evangelical whose mind can't break free of a 2000 year old fairy tale and the second is an Obama hater who uses obamacare as their hating platform. This type refuses to crasp that heath care in America is run by a coalition of corporations that have driven heath care cost to atleast twice the price of of all other countries in the world. Meanwhile the U.S. ranks far behind many other countries in the quaility of heathcare provided. The end soulution will be "socialized" medicine like Canada and every othe european nation. How else would you stop consorting thieves from robbing the citizenry blind? Are you so nieve that you think multi-national corporations will just take a fair profit? The insurance companies had to be forced to cover pre-existing conditions! Why? Because it doesn't make them money. Its all about the bottom line. You, the individual doesn't matter. Why is that so hard to crasp? As for the evangelical, Hobby Lobby has to follow the law. You know "THE LAW", just like minimum wage laws, underage worker laws and other employer mandated laws. You don't get to pick and choose because you believe some delusional nim'rod screaming at you from the pulpit every Sunday. Both of these groups will have to conform, like it or not.

    January 13, 2013 at 12:16 pm |
  7. Scottish Mama

    Religious people always think that because their religion does not permit them to use contraceptives that no one else should use them. There are people whom work for Hobby Lobby whom use contraceptives. With that being said religious people use pain killers. What if there is a religion that says we do not approve the use of pain killers, we work with you and we pay for your pain killers. We also pay into that system should we be able the deny you the use of pain killers? If there are workers that work at Hobby Lobby that use contraceptives and pay into that system and work there they should have the right to use their insurance in line with the beliefs they have, not the employers belief.

    January 13, 2013 at 12:15 pm |
    • JohnChristian

      Amen !!!!!!!

      January 13, 2013 at 12:16 pm |
    • Nathan

      Many Jehovah's Witnesses don't believe in blood transfusions, even in life threatening situations. Can you imagine a JW CEO trying to not allow his employee's health plans to cover such a treatment?

      January 13, 2013 at 12:17 pm |
    • CNN is biased and Christian bashers

      HL already pays for, and has no beef, with contraceptives for it's employees. That is not the issue! If an employee wants to take the pill and not get pregnant, they have zero problem with that. What they are saying is, if you get pregnant, you are on your own if your decision is to abort the baby. Contraceptives and a pill which will cause an already fertilized egg to not implant itself onto the wall of the uterus are TWO DIFFERENT THINGS. I can't believe that people can't see that. People always act like, "OH, BAD Hobby Lobby!! You don't want to pay for health care for your employees! BOO, HISS!" That is not the way I see this case at all.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:33 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Yes, you idiot, it IS the issue. Plan B IS A CONTRACEPTIVE. What the owners of HL "believe" it is is irrelevant. Read the fvcking literature. Plan B does NOT cause abortion. Abortion ONLY occurs after pregnancy. There IS NO PREGNANCY.

      January 13, 2013 at 1:16 pm |
    • CNN is biased and Christian bashers

      Oh, Tom. You seem like such a level-headed person. I am quite shocked to see that you feel you must resort to name calling and profanity to state your point. (*insert eye roll*) When is it a pregnancy to you, my good fellow? Not at fertilization? Not at 12 weeks when there has been a heart beat for a good month already? Then when?

      January 13, 2013 at 1:23 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      I'm not a "fellow," you fvcking azzwipe. I'm female. It's "pregnancy" when it meets the definition of "pregnancy" according to a medical dictionary. Look it up, you retard. A fertilized egg does NOT const itute a pregnancy. FORTY PERCENT or MORE of fertilized eggs NEVER implant at all. Do you think all those fertilized eggs, shed before they EVER implant, during the very next cycle, are "miscarriages"? "Abortions?" Did you even take Biology 101?

      January 13, 2013 at 1:30 pm |
    • CNN is biased and Christian bashers

      Yes, for the short answer. I think if there is a fertilized egg that has either not properly attached or attached and then fallen off, that was a miscarriage. Your body has started producing hormones to support the life as soon as the egg is fertilized. You really think that name calling and profanity are helping you sound more intelligent, don't you?

      January 13, 2013 at 1:46 pm |
    • Jen

      A woman is not pregnant until the fertilized egg implants, so nope – it's not a miscarriage. Also, you would NEVER get a positive pregnancy test until after implantation so nope – no HCG produced until after implantation. You are not smart at all are you?

      January 13, 2013 at 2:18 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      CNN never took a pregnancy test the day after s2x. Epic fail.

      January 13, 2013 at 2:20 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Hey, CNN, you really think you sound like you have a clue what you're talking about?

      January 13, 2013 at 2:21 pm |
    • Marky

      The HL board is not refusing to pay for contraception. That has been proven over and over. They do NOT want to pay for certain types of contraception which they believe to function by in essence "aborting" the fertilized egg. You claim that the employee may not believe the same thing the board does. Well, what has that to do with it? If the employee wants the pill or the IUD not covered, then pay for it themselves as many of us pay for things not covered. The "morning after pill" is not to be considered as a good form of BC, and why should it be required to be furnished? People just react to the word "Christian" and flip out; this should be a non-issue, since this is a privately owned company. No one gets hired by this company without knowing what their benefits are. Don't like it? Don't take the job, or plan for the possibility you will need to pay out of pocket for certain things. Sheesh!

      Those of you that think swearing and name-calling makes you sound more relevant and intelligent...well, you are mistaken in that as well.

      January 13, 2013 at 2:42 pm |
  8. Radiolizner

    How does Hobby Lobby justify purchasing most of their products from China?

    January 13, 2013 at 12:11 pm |
    • JohnChristian

      Because they believe their religion is about making money..............

      January 13, 2013 at 12:14 pm |
    • JohnChristian

      Haven't you been to their church ??? It has a dollar sign hanging on the cross.....

      January 13, 2013 at 12:15 pm |
    • Name*John

      How do you know that John Christian? Have you been to their church? Does it really have a dollar sign above it? You lie!

      January 13, 2013 at 12:19 pm |
  9. Oh really?

    So they do not want to provide health insurance to their employees because of birth control? Its funny how these religious fanatics fail to consider how much it costs for medical bills in raising a child. I assure them, the $20 a month in birth control costs is far cheaper than all the medical bills of a baby

    January 13, 2013 at 12:08 pm |
    • JohnChristian

      I can tell you that HOBBY LOBBY health insurance covers Viagra which cost well over $200.00 a month. So much for the penis religion....

      January 13, 2013 at 12:13 pm |
    • Name*John

      How do you know that John Christian? You don't. Provide a source that says otherwise. You lie.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:21 pm |
    • cb

      Name*John, if you are going to call someone a liar, perhaps it is YOU that should provide the proof.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:28 pm |
    • Marky

      They are NOT refusing to pay for insurance OR BC for their employees!! They do NOT want to pay for CERTAIN TYPES OF IUDs AND FOR THE MORNING-AFTER PILL!' How is that different from the companies who refuse to pay for ADHD meds for those who have been carefully diagnosed and obviously function better on ADHD meds? No one complains about that? My son has reflux so badly he is in danger of esophageal cancer, and his insurance company won't pay for meds he needs to control that; who's complaining about that? He is in his 30's and meds like Nexium are several hundred $/mo; we have to help him with that since he doesn't make a bunch of money. It is what it is, people; and frankly, I know a lot of people who worry about the "morning after pill", and they are anything but Christians. You really need to curb the knee-jerk reactions to the word, "Christian", and realize it is primarily "Christians" who are helping the poor and disenfranchised, on the front lines at disasters, and who run most of the shelters and food lines, while getting picked apart for measly crap like this.

      January 13, 2013 at 2:03 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      I don't care about their "moral objections" to the morning after pill or the IUD. If they won't abide by the laws, they should leave the country. They're not that important. Their beliefs do NOT trump laws that affect others' lives and health.

      January 13, 2013 at 2:15 pm |
  10. Marc Florida

    Health insurance policies must be consistant. It is not appropriate for an employer to decide what services a health policy would or would not provide. That is a decision for the employee to make. I am surprised that conservatives who defend so strongly for individual rights woul not question an employers ability to craft a health policy based on their own belief system. That is wrong. It is for the employee to decide what is or is not a service to be accessed. An employer should not be deciding what medications or treament should be available to an employee.

    January 13, 2013 at 12:06 pm |
    • Jdevil1735

      of course it is appropriate – they are a private business. It is INAPPROPRIATE for the federal government to DICTATE what kind of coverage companies MUST provide.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:10 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      The SCOTUS says otherwise. Go argue the case there. The government does have the right and the obligation to regulate many aspects of private enterprise. Where have you been for the past 80 years?

      January 13, 2013 at 12:12 pm |
    • Scott f.

      Completely agree. Amazing how they think it's ok to shove their misogynistic agenda down the throats of their employees, the majority who are women.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:12 pm |
    • jimmy

      Maybe pat robertson should get together with todd akin and figure out the ratio of ugly women getting pregnant or some other ridiculous statement. as for hobby lobby, when the corporate office shows up in a church, then they can use religion as an excuse.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:21 pm |
  11. Jon Durham

    Hobby Lobby no business what it's employees use their insurance for. The employees EARN their insurance. The employer has no right or legal recourse to determine how employees use money or benefits they earn. As some others have pointed out, this is the equivalent of an employer deciding how an employee can spend his paycheck. We have mandated that you will provide your employees insurance as compensation for their labor. It is theirs, they earn it, you don't like it? Close up shop. No one forces you to operate a business in the US. Don't worry, there are people waiting to fill the void you would leave in the market.

    January 13, 2013 at 12:05 pm |
  12. ZL

    Ever notice when it comes to these people and these arguments, it's always an individual or two that causes all this because they refuse to acknowledge the law...and in the process they cram their beliefs onto everybody else to suffer the consequences.....It's the whole problem with the religious right in this country. These people only care about themselves, it's pretty obvious with the treatment of the poor, and everybody else that doesn't agree with them.

    January 13, 2013 at 12:04 pm |
    • Name*John

      Yeah and the Catholic Church doesn't give a rats ass about the poor. You are so ignorant

      January 13, 2013 at 12:11 pm |
    • Marky

      You are hopelessly ignorant of who is on the front lines every day helping those in need. How many families have you helped get on their feet after any of the disasters like Joplin, NOLA, and Sandy, to name a few. The Red Cross took up so much money for Haiti, but decided to "save it in case there is another problem somewhere", while the Salvation Army and Baptist Men (for instance) rolled up their sleeves, built shelters, furnished money and supplies to others who were there to help as well, and got some real work done. Many of you sit on your backside whining about how Christians aren't doing enough, while you are doing NOTHING!!

      January 13, 2013 at 2:09 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      I don't give a sh!t what self-professed believers do to "help" anyone else, because they do it out of obligation to the church and because it allows them to pat themselves on the back.

      They can either obey the laws of the country in which they make their money or get the fvck out.

      January 13, 2013 at 2:12 pm |
    • Bob Bales

      Who is Hobby Lobby forcing their beliefs on? No one. Rather, it is they who are being forced, by the beliefs of others, to do something they find morally objectionable.

      And how *does* the religious right treat the poor? Studies have shown that evangelicals give more than average to charitable causes.

      January 13, 2013 at 2:12 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Tough toenails. If they're so opposed to the US laws, they can leave. Simple as that.

      January 13, 2013 at 2:13 pm |
  13. JohnChristian

    What Would Jesus Do? The word is he accepted ALL... He did not pick up any gun or any weapon and demand everyone bow down...... He gave you the invitation to follow..... So the Pharisees still exist !

    January 13, 2013 at 12:03 pm |
  14. ForReal

    So one can only hold beliefs that the liberals endorse? The board of Hobby Lobby has the same right to vigorously defend their faith as all other citizens enjoy! I think they will win in court, or find a loophole. They did not create their business by being stupid.

    January 13, 2013 at 12:03 pm |
    • Marc Florida

      Individuals have a write to defend their own beliefs. They have no right to superimpose such beliefs on others. .

      January 13, 2013 at 12:10 pm |
    • JeffreyRO5

      How does a company have a religious faith? And what about the salary that Hobby Lobby pays its employees: if they use that money to buy birth control and get abortions, isn't the company doing the same thing it's doing with earned health care benefits? Do you think the company can make employees sign away their right to use their income, whether salary or benefits, however they see fit? This is AMerica not the Soviet Union, pal.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:36 pm |
  15. Name*John

    Good for Hobby Lobby for not participating in this government forced travesty called Obamacare. The day the govt forces anything on us is a sad day. If its so great, why did members of congress excuse themselves from it? Obamacare is filled with all kinds of pork and sweetheart deals and the American public was sold a horrible bag of goods and they are too stupid to recognize that. Shame on Obama for lying!

    January 13, 2013 at 12:02 pm |
    • JohnChristian

      You Moron!!!! So lets say you shop at an Islamic owned business and they don't like that your little johnny or little sally just stole a piece of candy, they grab your child and have their hands cut off in front of everyone, IS THAT OK??????

      Beware of what you are trying to disguise as religious freedom. HOBBY LOBBY is a business not a church............

      January 13, 2013 at 12:08 pm |
    • zandhcats

      Same on your to deprive of people access the ACA! Do you know how many people who can't afford the health insurance but put more burden to the society? Right,ask those who shot in the cinema last year,most of the victims didn't have health insurance and the hospital waived all their expense. Ultimately, where the cost redistribute to? The government and tax payers!

      Your freedom of choice is at the cost of my pocket!

      January 13, 2013 at 12:12 pm |
    • zandhcats

      Should be shame one you! Name*John!

      January 13, 2013 at 12:13 pm |
    • Name*John

      You idiot! Lets go ad hominum here, you are comparing Islamic rule or sharia law and healthcare, they are apples and oranges. Glad you support the liar in chief. Is that personal enough for you?

      January 13, 2013 at 12:15 pm |
    • Scottish Mama

      Because paying for the people we already pay for is wrong? Yeah whom do you think pays for these people? We do. When they go to the emergency room at the highest price we can pay. We pay for them anyway at the premium price in the emergency room. If these unimsured people are getting medical care we can use what Obama strives for, medical preventives. Even most insurance companies are aboard, with the broadening of preventive tests. My husbands insurance company did not use the 80% of their take in on their clients and my husband insurance had to refund money to the company. Another Obamacare help to small businesses.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:30 pm |
    • Name*John

      @zhandcats: I expected a simpleton answer to a complex problem from you. You believed the lies in Obamacare which will bankrupt the country. Shame on both of you!

      January 13, 2013 at 12:32 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      You are full of it Name*John. You don't have a clue as to what you're braying about. It's not going to "bankrupt" the country. And the government DOES have a right to regulate a private company. You've been wrong about everything you've blathered here.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:34 pm |
    • Do the Right Thing

      Name*John – you're not particularly well-informed, are you?

      January 13, 2013 at 12:34 pm |
  16. Judith

    There is a quite simple answer to this: Hobby Lobby pays for the existing coverage but combined with the insurance company they have an agreement that employees who wish to have contraception cover pay for it sperately but stiill under the company policy.

    January 13, 2013 at 12:00 pm |
  17. JohnChristian

    So lets get this correct... Hobby Lobby wants to refuse to offer their American Employees (or illegals) health coverage paid for by Americans spending their money for all the CHINESE crap they sell.......

    January 13, 2013 at 11:56 am |
    • Name*John

      Like other companies don't do the same? You find me a company that still manufactures cheap goods in the US and sells to Hobby Lobby in whole and HL can rely on all American companies to supply their goods and I have a bridge I'd like to sell you.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:08 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Name*John, every time you post, another puppy dies.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:51 pm |
    • Damocles

      @name

      Stop murdering puppies you twit.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:54 pm |
  18. mike m

    Hobby Lobby is an inanimate business that exists only by law, it cannot hold a religious belief. The owners of Hobbly Lobby, however, are using Hobby Lobby to force their religious beliefs on employees. Stopping this abusive practice is one reason this country was formed – to have a country controlled by law, not religion.

    Freedom of religion does not mean freedom to force others to conform to your religion.

    January 13, 2013 at 11:55 am |
    • ForReal

      The owners can and do hold religious beliefs. It is their company! No one is forced to work there. They are willing to pay for the health care, just not for what they consider murder. You may not agree, but that does not make you correct. Liberals tend to only support free speech when it agrees with them.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:08 pm |
    • amaint69

      You mean 'a country run by government' right??? Hobby Lobby is a private american business. They should be able to offer a wide variety of health care options to their employees while keeping their core beliefs in tact. If you don't like that, move to Sweden.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:08 pm |
    • Scottish Mama

      For Real -Be real. I guess when you can force a Union Company to let non union people work there, with that logic I guess you can force a Hobby Lobby to let women use contraceptives. And if Hobby Lobby let men get hard ons we can allow women to prevent pregnancy.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:36 pm |
    • CNN is biased and Christian bashers

      Scottish Mama, you are ridiculous. You do not even seem to know the facts about this case at all. Do some reading, get informed, then maybe you can put a logical thought out here. This is not about contraceptives, as Hobby Lobby already provides birth control pills and other forms of contraceptives to their employees. This is about one thing. Abortion. Who should be forced to pay for it if a woman makes that choice?

      January 13, 2013 at 12:47 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      No, CNN, YOU are the one who's ignorant of the facts. This IS NOT about abortion. Plan B is NOT an abortion pill, and if you're too dumb to read the facts, then shut up and don't spread lies. That's what HL is doing. Plan B does NOT cause abortion.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:49 pm |
    • CNN is biased and Christian bashers

      So how do you see it, Tom? If a pill will cause an already fertilized egg to not implant itself onto the unterine wall, that is not stopping a life that has already begun? What if scientists found living cells on a rock from Mars? Would not the headline's read, "LIFE FOUND ON MARS!!"

      January 13, 2013 at 12:55 pm |
    • mike m

      To amaint69 from mike m: You just made my point. You state that the owners of Hobby Lobby "should be able to offer a wide variety of health care options to their employees while keeping their core beliefs in tact." This is the point I am making. Hobby Lobby is, in fact, allowed by law to do this, yet the owners of Hobby Lobby refuse to allow Hobby Lobby to offer certain health care options based on their personal religious beliefs.

      If you want such abusive practices to be legal, there are a number of Middle Eastern countries controlled by religion that you can move to.

      January 13, 2013 at 1:09 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      mikey, you are falling for lies. The PRIMARY action of Plan B is this: it stops an egg from being released. If there is a fertilized egg present it "MAY"-"MAY" prevent implantation. Not "WILL." "MAY." Until a fertilized egg HAS implanted there IS no pregnancy. None. The very definition of pregnancy is that a fertilized egg has already been implanted. Fertilized eggs are shed ALL the time naturally. Only 40% of them at most implant anyway.

      THIS IS NOT ABORTION. What about this is so hard to grasp?

      January 13, 2013 at 1:13 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Sorry, that last post was to the idiot "CNN," not mike m.

      CNN, you're a bonehead.

      January 13, 2013 at 1:17 pm |
    • CNN is biased and Christian bashers

      So then, Tom, you would not agree with the scientist who would call cells on a rock "Life", then right?

      January 13, 2013 at 1:38 pm |
    • CNN is biased and Christian bashers

      Please be honest with your response.

      January 13, 2013 at 1:39 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      You are dumb, aren't you? Never said an egg, sperm, or fertilized egg wasn't alive, moron. How fvcking stupid are you? You can't even read. They're all "alive." So is a skin cell.

      Doesn't const itute a pregnancy, you idiot. READ SOMETHING and learn. Your utter ignorance is both astounding and embarrassing.

      January 13, 2013 at 1:42 pm |
    • CNN is biased and Christian bashers

      I never said "alive". I said life. We are not really talking skin cells here, are we, Tom? As a matter of fact, we are not talking at all. You have to listen and respond in a reasonable fashion to be having a conversation. All you seem to manage are rants mixed with insults and profanity. You are not going to change my mind and I will not change yours. You have a nice afternoon.

      January 13, 2013 at 1:54 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      I win. Go fvck yourself, you moron.

      January 13, 2013 at 1:54 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Since I know you can't resist reading here, you might want to figure out that nobody claimed there was "A LIFE" on a rock, you stupid git. There are cells that are alive, and if you can't figure out the difference, you're too stupid to be on here. Beat it.

      January 13, 2013 at 2:01 pm |
    • Bob Bales

      Hobby Lobby is not forcing their employees to believe, act in accordance with, or conform to any religious belief.

      January 13, 2013 at 2:21 pm |
  19. Rina

    Wow – the stupidity is the country is rampant – especially on the part of the religious right. So, they provide healthcare and they are griping because it covers birth control or abortion pills. So, if I have a business and I pay my employee and he goes and spends his money on trapping animals for fur, since I don't agree with trapping I have the right to not pay him? Puh-lease. The GOP contradicts itself all the time. It's simple people. The law is the law is the law. Now, if Hobby Lobby wants to truly abide by the word of God, they would FOLLOW the law, they would not buy products from China (talk about guilt by association) and they would stop trying to limit others' rights. I bet their health plan covers viagra. Does it also cover in vitro fertilization? Just curious.

    January 13, 2013 at 11:54 am |
    • Copper

      Please stop saying that ONLY the GOP holds this view. I am a lifelong Democrat, and to say that you have to pick a side based on party lines on this issue is just WRONG. That's the major flaw in our current "two party system", we have become typecasted.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:12 pm |
    • CNN is biased and Christian bashers

      Hobby Lobby already provides health insurance and it covers preventative health care such as the pill, etc. What they do not want to be forced to pay for is some persons abortion. Two different things entirely. It's not preventative to take a pill that will cause an already fertilized egg to not implant itself onto the unterine wall.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:51 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Idiot, pregnancy is DEFINED as a fertilized egg that has implanted. It's not a pregnancy, it's not an embryo, it's not a child, it's not a baby.

      Take a fvcking biology class, you fvckwit.

      January 13, 2013 at 1:18 pm |
    • CNN is biased and Christian bashers

      Poor Tom. Can't defend his position without name calling and profanity. By stating that the morning after pill might, just maybe, prevent a fertilized egg from implanting in the uterus is trying to skirt the fact. It's fertilized already. If you want a contraceptive ( an intentional prevention of conception) take some responsibility for your own actions and take a birth control pill, which is already provided for under HL current heath care plan.

      January 13, 2013 at 1:36 pm |
    • Bob Bales

      There is absolutely no equivalence between forcing the owners to spend *their* money and allowing an employee to s[end *his* money. In no way is Hobby Lobby trying to limit anyone's rights.

      January 13, 2013 at 2:32 pm |
  20. areyoukiddingme?

    I drive past two of these daily on my way to work. I used to stop and pick things up for projects.
    Hobby Lobby will never see another penny from my pocket.

    When you cite the faith of the executive board in making business decisions, you are in effect discriminating against your employees who do not hold the same beliefs. SHAME on you.

    January 13, 2013 at 11:54 am |
    • Joe

      Bye!

      January 13, 2013 at 12:09 pm |
    • Bob Bales

      Suppose that, in order not to discriminate against the employes who didn't share their beliefs, they made a decision against their beliefs. Then, by the same logic, they would be discriminating against the employees that *do* share their beliefs. Some other comment mentioned Chinese goods. Suppose the owners determined that a certain Chinese company was exploiting its workers. If the owners have a religious relief that exploiting people is wrong, would a decision to stop selling the exploiting company's products discriminate against the employees who might not feel that way (by depriving their stores of sales, hence lowering profits, hence potentially reducing those employees' pay)?

      Every business decision made by an owner or an executive is made based on his/her principles.

      January 13, 2013 at 2:48 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.