Bench Memos

The Struggle That Follows Hobby Lobby

Today at Public Discourse, I have an essay titled “After Hobby Lobby, the Struggle for Religious Freedom Continues.”  Here’s a sample:

The structure of the Court’s logic compels the conclusion that, for purposes of religious freedom, all the objecting employers are identically situated. Churches, houses of worship, and religious orders (now exempted), para-church institutions such as Notre Dame and EWTN (now “accommodated” but still, in their own view, morally complicit in evil), and private for-profit employers (coerced until two days ago and now in limbo for a time) can all equally claim religious freedom from the unjust coercion of the government. As artificial persons in the law—organized to serve and secure the interests of the natural persons they represent—they are in principle indistinguishable in their ability to claim the same sincere religious objection to the HHS mandate.

The government’s effort to distinguish these categories of employers amounts, in short, to a row of dominoes, all falling together by the logic of religious freedom enunciated by the Court in Hobby Lobby

You can read the whole thing here.


Matthew J. Franck — Matthew J. Franck is the Director of the William E. and Carol G. Simon Center on Religion and the Constitution at the Witherspoon Institute in Princeton, New Jersey.

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