Column: A Malat Musing: Hobby Lobby Dilemma

Created: 07/03/2014 11:39 AM
By: Phil Malat

As the old saying goes; “If mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy” and we are about to hear from mama on the Supreme Courts most recent Hobby Lobby ruling.

As the same old tired arguments are being screamed from the highest hills and as the heart of the issue continues to be ignored, it may be wise for us to consider the following.

Let’s begin with the inevitable battle cry that this is a female issue and thus the demand that all men shut-up on the subject.  This will be followed by an insistence that the ruling is bogus because the five Supreme Court justices who supported the law are all males.

It’s ironic that women who once bristled over, and were furious with those who advanced the argument that women couldn’t hold high level positions of responsibility because their thinking would be clouded or irrational during ovulation, are now using the same sexist type logic and arguments with regards this and other relevant issues. 

Yet no one need be a woman to understand that child birth is painful or that the demands of a primary care giver and motherhood and are incredible – or - to know the difference between right and wrong.  Any guy who lies down with a woman believing she should bear the sole responsibility for her pregnancy – so he can continue to get his jollies – is a slob and any woman who sleeps with him is an idiot.  That certainly is not a female issue and is at the very heart of this dispute. 

This will of course bring us to the altogether familiar attacks on religion.  

Religion or no religion, immorality and irresponsibility are the cornerstones of the concerns and where this subject becomes contentious.  This topic and its discussion present the same dilemmas and challenges we face with abortion.  Common sense dictates that abortion should be legal so the procedure is safe for those who may have a legitimate medical need.  Yet the procedure is badly abused in that it supports selfish and irresponsible behavior.  The very same threat exists with regards birth control in that its abuses will further fuel irresponsible sexual activity.

We next will be bombarded with the premise that all forms of birth control are facing, or have succumbed to, certain death.  This is where we should remind ourselves that the court has frowned upon just two IUD's and two Morning After pills. 

Yes, we are dealing with somewhat of a mystery here in that common sense, once again, dictates that any form of birth control deemed a medical necessity for the health of the patient should clearly be made available.  The Morning After pill could be deemed necessary for a victim of rape or incest and an IUD may be necessary for a woman who, for whatever medical reason, may not be able to consume birth control pills or could not withstand a hysterectomy.  But none of this is spelling an end to all forms of birth control.

There are no easy answers as to how to protect those engaged in responsible behavior without supporting the ugly, self-centered and careless behavior surrounding casual sexual activity.  However, those pursuing the answers need to be encouraged to continue, void of unreasonable and harsh criticism by others who have an irresponsible, self-serving agenda. 

It is clearly a very difficult dilemma which requires the attention of those who possess a rational thought process.

Phil Malat is a columnist for

Minneapolis/St. Paul

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