(a satire on the Hobby Lobby decision)
by Pam Green, © 2017
This is a satire . It is intended to criticise the Hobby Lobby decision. It is NOT intended to offend any reader who may be a believer in Christian Science or any of the other religions mentioned, and I appologize to any such believers whom this may offend.
To distinguish the below described religion from Christianity and from Christian Science, I have invented a theme based on my own belief that if there is a Diety, She and Her parthnogenically begotten child, Christiana, are both female (created in my own image).
I am nowhere near as gifted a writer as Swift was, but I invite all readers to contemplate his "A Modest Proposal".
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Good morning ladies and gentlemen and non-binary persons of the press.
I am Ebenezer Screwyou , the owner and CEO of Rob-ye Lobby Corporation. Today I am here to announce an up-coming change in our corporate health insurance coverage for our nearly 200 employees and their families. This change will take place on January 1, 2018.
This new policy is inspired and motivated by a religious epiphany I experienced a few months ago and have been meditating upon ever since. This policy is fully legal under the Supreme Court's decision in the Hobby Lobby case , which autorizes an employer to deny inssurance coverage for types of care which offend that employer's religious beliefs, regardless of the beliefs of any of those employees.
My epiphany, my conversion to Christianan Science, took place a few months ago (shortly after studying our corporate finances and seeing how much we were spending on employee health insurance). I was suffering a agonizing headache, and by sheer luck or by the Grace of Goddess, my secretary (whose name happens to be "Grace" and whose fter-hours "work" for me has been truely amazing) offered to take me to a healing prayer meeting of her local Christianan Science church. Miraculously about 2/3 of the way through the service my headache dissappeared. I felt wonderful. I have since had a few similar experiences of healing through prayer. I am converted, hallejulia !.
Now for those of you who might be unfamiliar with Christianan Science generally, and probably more unfamiliar with the particular branch of to which I have converted, the basic belief is that the best and only acceptable method of treating disease and injury is prayer, prayer for Christiana to bestow healing. Those who are neophytes in this belief are advised to attend prayer meetings in the Church of Christiana Scientist or to have a chaplain of that church pray with the petitioner individually. If your prayer is sincere enough (and if Goddess's Daughter isn't too busy healing other more worthy petitioners) you will be healed.
It worked for me !. It was probably helpful that I was already a Christian (in a different one of Christianity's 131 flavors) before this conversion to Christiana Science. But surely a Jew or Muslim or or atheist could convert. Even a Methodist or Mormon could find the Light.. Hindus and Buddists may not feel the need to convert since for them death is merely the doorway to reincarnation, thus death from illness or injury should not be feared. But I digress..
Therefore, starting on January 1 of 2018, the Rob-ye Corp will change it's previous all-encompassing medical health insurance to coverage by R-Y Christian Science Health Insurance Company (a fully owned subsidiary of the Rob-ye Corp).. This coverrge will exclude every form of conventional medical care, preventive care, treatment, and so on. Instead, it will cover treatment by Christianan Science prayer. I will be building a chapel on our main business site and hiring a chaplain to be available to all employees and their families. Conversion classes will be held two nights a week and Sunday morning to assist employees to convert and thus become more likely to be healed through prayer.
(I know that conversion might not be acceptable to some of our employees. I certainly would never dream of pressuring them to convert. Their religious belief (or disbelief) is absolutely their own choice and their own concern. That's what American religious freedom is all about. You can believe anything you choose, but my religious freedom , my personal beliefs as your employer, will govern your health insurance coverage. If you don't like it, go work somewhere else.)
Employees will greatly benefit from this change because they will no longer be required to make contributions to the cost of their health insurance. Out of my limitless compssion and generosity, I am providing this coverage totally free of charge. Use of the chapel and chaplain are also free of charge.
There are a few remaining details of which I am not yet certain.
Are the employee's family members who are dogs or cats or horses eligible to be covered under this plan ? That probably depends on whether they have souls and are capable of prayer or whether they can benefit from the prayer-by-proxy prayed on their behalf by their human family members. I must consult with Christianan Science theologians on this point. Perhaps in the meantime I should provide employees with a group plan of Veterinary Insurance, paid half by the Corporation and half by the employee. Legally this may depend on whether there are at least 50 employees whose family includes pets. I must consult our corporate attorneys, a group notoriously slow to come to a decision so long as their client continues to pay hourly fees.
I am also uncertain whether the use of condoms would be considered to be a prohibited "medical" treatment or preventative. If not, then I propose to install free dispensers of condoms in all restrooms, those for women, those for men, and those for the undecided or non-binary persons. Best to err on the side of generosity while I consult with theologians, a cadre notoriously slow to come to any consensus,
Bless you all. Hallejulia !
Originally Rob-ye Lobby was named "Rob-ye Lob-Ye" and their product was extremely expensive (over-priced) tennis racquets, their slogan "Racquets are our racket" They have expanded and now make a variety of expensive sporting equipment.
The Supreme Court's Hobby Lobby decision, surely among the several all-time worst-ever rulings, permits an employer or business owner to refuse to cover some aspect of ordinary care in the employee health insurance program based on the employer's personal religious beliefs. This is totally in disregard of the religious beliefs of the employees, any one or all of them.
This is exactly the kind of religious tyranny of one group's beliefs upon other people that the Framers of the US Constitution had in mind when they wrote the "religion" clause into the First Amendment. The Framers had seen close at hand that in some of the colonies a powerful majority imposed its own religion upon all inhabitants. The Puritans were the poster children for this, exiling or executing those who refused to comply with the beliefs and actions dictated by their theocracy.. The Framers had also close at hand some colonies where there was religious freedom, despite a substantial majority of citizens who shared some one particular faith.
Christiana is Goddess's First (parthnogenically) Begotten Daughter and for a long time was her only offspring. Much later She parthenogenically begot the Sacred Twins, Halle and Julia, whom we honor every time we shout "Hallejulia"
As to whether or not dogs and horses have souls, I am quite certain that they have better souls than I do myself. About cats and some human individuals (whose names I shall refrain from mentioning) , I am less certain.
(Cats, I am only joking. I know you consider yourselves to be dieties and therefore don't need to have souls. Souls are for worshippers, not for dieties.)