Ron Paul: Hobby Lobby Opinion Doesn’t Solve Problem of Too Many Mandates
Today Campaign for Liberty Chairman Ron Paul issued the following statement on the Hobby Lobby decision, reprinted below from the Ron Paul Channel:
June 30, 2014 – The long-awaited ruling by the Supreme Court dealing with Hobby Lobby came down. I did not find any surprises in this ruling. I agree that they ruled correctly, but it doesn’t solve many of our problems.
The biggest problem is that government is more than an instrument of issuing mandates. As they do this, of course, they diminish liberty. There was a time when governments were supposed to protect liberty, and minimize any of the mandates on the people.
Unfortunately, the majority of the American people actually agree with the Supreme Court. They think that women have a right to free birth control. I strongly disagree with that.
The Supreme Court ruling actually ignored the whole principle of rights. They did not use the First Amendment to justify what they’re saying. They used the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1990. Indirectly it was related to the First Amendment, but I don’t even agree that this is a religious issue as much as a property rights issue and a contract issue.
Some of the technicalities are sort of boring when it comes to their justification. They’re claiming they could rule in this manner because Hobby Lobby was a closely held corporation. It wasn’t a public corporation. Well, why should rights be that relative? Individuals have rights. Corporations don’t have rights. If it’s a public corporation or a private corporation, they are one in the same. Individuals who establish the corporation have rights, and they should be protected.
One thing they never seem to care about is the corporations that run our news outlets, that own the televisions and the big newspapers. They’re not restrained in any way in producing their products, but other corporations, we’re supposed to say that government has the right to restrain them.
The other issue they dealt with was just who wrote the regulations and did that make it proper. Since the Congress didn’t write the regulation, there was a question that this regulation wasn’t as acceptable because it was written by some clerk and some bureaucrat. Well, rights shouldn’t be that arbitrary. Neither the Congress nor the president nor the bureaucrat should be writing laws that dictate and tell people what they can do and can’t do with their personal choices.
But I think the most profoundly confusing argument has been the argument that not being able to get free birth control is discrimination against women. This, to me, is utterly amazing. If somebody wants something, and they wish to have something—they demand something—they say they have a right to it, which is absolutely wrong. That’s why we have this runaway welfare state. That’s why we have corporations taking over; because of this assumption. Rights are designed to protect people’s lives and their liberties. But not to fulfill their wishes and desires and demands. Besides, what about the discrimination against the people who have to pay?
They say women have a right to this, and the government has a right to mandate from corporations and individuals who don’t want the birth control pills, they don’t seem to worry about that. But this is discrimination of its worst kind. And nobody even talks about that; discrimination of giving women something for free that they demand is the real fault. But the thing is, this whole argument wouldn’t have existed if we had a clear understanding of property and property rights and voluntary contracts.
Even though this does not make conditions worse, there is a bit of a challenge to Obamacare. It still means that we have a long way to go to restore the principles of individual liberty and due process.