Actor and human rights activist George Takei condemned the Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby ruling Monday as a “stunning set-back for women’s reproductive rights” in apost Tuesday on his personal blog, That Blog Is So Takei.
“Hobby Lobby is not a church. It’s a business — and a big one at that. Businesses must and should be required to comply with neutrally crafted laws of general applicability,” Takei wrote. “Your boss should not have a say over your healthcare. Once the law starts permitting exceptions based on ‘sincerely held religious beliefs’ there’s no end to the mischief and discrimination that will ensue.”
In a 5-4 decision Monday, the Supreme Court ruled that closely held corporations can opt out of providing contraception coverage if it violates their sincere religious beliefs, a ruling Takei viewed as potentially skewed by the plaintiffs’ Christian faith.
“In this case, the owners happen to be deeply Christian; one wonders whether the case would have come out differently if a Muslim-run chain business attempted to impose Sharia law on its employees,” Takei said.
The “Star Trek” actor also criticized the craft store chain for spending millions of dollars on employee retirement plans that are invested in a variety of manufacturers that produce the same contraceptive products the company protested in its lawsuit.
“It also buys most of its inventory from China, where forced abortions are common,” Takei added. “The hypocrisy is galling.”
Takei urged readers to boycott Hobby Lobby and other for-profit businesses that deprive their employees of health coverage based on invasive religious beliefs.
“We are a nation that respects religious beliefs, but also the right not to have those beliefs imposed upon you by others. Our personal beliefs stop at the end of our noses,” Takei concluded. “The only way such companies ever learn to treat people with decency and tolerance is to hit them where it counts — in their pocketbooks.”