Cara L. Gallagher, weekend contributor
There was a case argued two weeks ago that I’ll admit I paid no attention to when I created my roster of Cases to Watch in the OT14: Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs v. The Inclusive Communities Project. A woman who teaches a course on social justice in urban areas asked if I knew anything about this case after it popped up on her Twitter feed. Her students were interested in the impact of the case and, as many of them had just taken my law and politics course and knew the ideologies of the Supreme Court bench, wanted to know more about it so they could make predictions about the outcome. As an educator and (self-described) specialist of Supreme Court activities, I did a deep dive into researching it in an effort to help with this teachable moment and immediately moved it into the top five cases to watch this term.
This is a case about a specific part of the Civil Rights Act of 1968, that iconic piece of legislation signed one week after Dr. King was shot, called the Fair Housing Act (FHA). Continue reading “The Fair Housing Act: How fair is Fair?”
A unanimous Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that a Muslim prison inmate in Arkansas, Gregory H. Holt (also known as Abdul Maalik Muhammad), can grow a short beard for religious reasons. The case is The case is Holt v. Hobbs, 13-6827. It represents a trifecta loss. The federal magistrate (Joe J. Volpe), the district court judge (Brian S. Miller), and the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit (Judges Bye, Arnold, and Shepherd) all ruled against Holt only to see a unanimous Supreme Court reject their reasoning. Justices Ginsburg and Sotomayor both wrote concurring opinions.
Continue reading “From Hobby Lobby To Holt: Supreme Court Rules Unanimously In Favor Of Religious Rights Of Arkansas Inmate”
Submitted by Elaine Magliaro, Weekend Contributor
Submitted by Elaine Magliaro, Weekend Contributor
Back in March of this year—during oral arguments in the Hobby Lobby case—Sahil Kapur (Talking Points Memo) said he thought that the conservative Supreme Court Justices “appeared broadly ready to rule against the birth control mandate under Obamacare.” He added that “their line of questioning indicated they may have a majority to do it.” Kapur reported that Chief Justice Roberts and Justices Scalia and Alito “expressed no sympathy for the regulation while appearing concerned for the Christian business owners of Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood who said the contraceptive mandate violates their religious liberty and fails strict scrutiny standards under the 1993 Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA).”
During oral arguments, Justice Scalia said, “You’re talking about, what, three or four birth controls, not all of them, just those that are abortifacient. That’s not terribly expensive stuff, is it?”
There are a couple of things I think Justice Scalia should know. First, the four contraceptive methods that Hobby Lobby objected to paying for—Plan B, Ella, and two intrauterine devices—are not abortifacients. They do not prevent the implantation of a fertilized egg into the uterus—which the owners of Hobby Lobby consider to be abortion. Instead—according to the Food and Drug Administration—the four contraceptive methods in question prevent fertilization of an egg. Second, the cost of intrauterine devices can be quite considerable—especially to a woman working for minimum wage or for a company like Hobby Lobby.
Continue reading “SCOTUS, Science, Conception, and Some Facts about the Four Contraceptives at the Center of the Hobby Lobby Case”
Respectfully submitted by Lawrence E. Rafferty (rafflaw)-Weekend Contributor
Unless you have been in a coma the last few weeks, you have probably heard of or read about the Hobby Lobby case recently argued in front of the United States Supreme Court. Hobby Lobby is challenging a section of the Affordable Care Act that requires companies to provide medical insurance for their employees or pay a fine. The mandate also requires the insurance to include coverage for contraception services. Services that its owners claim violates their religious beliefs.
“…. the battle for its Christian identity was revived this week when lawyers for the company argued before the Supreme Court that the company should not have to comply with the Affordable Care Act’s contraception mandate. The issue, says Hobby Lobby co-founder Barbara Green, isn’t that the company wants to meddle with women’s rights to take contraceptive drugs. “We’re not trying to control that,” she said. “We’re just trying to control our participation in it.” ‘ Reader Supported News
Mrs. Green claims they are not trying to control their female employees use of contraceptives, but the network of causes that they are involved with seem to indicate that the Greens want to mix their religious views into everyone else’s business. Continue reading “Hobby Lobby and the Truth”