There are so many things wrong with the Supreme Court's decision in the Hobby Lobby case - from the impact on women's health, to the second class citizenship it confers on women, to the bizarre notion that corporations are people.
But there's another small aspect of the ruling that will accelerate the death of functional political discourse in this country.
Namely, Samuel Alito makes clear in his decision that, according to the Supreme Court, it no longer matters in America if something is actually true as long you believe it to be true.
Follow me below the jump.
"You are entitled to your opinion.In the era of Republican misinformation, this has become a big point of contention in America. Fox News, right wing talk shows, the Tea Party, and Congressional Republican talking points all spew with great conviction things that they believe to be true, but which plainly are not.
But you are not entitled to your own facts"
Members of the "reality-based community" are often frustrated that Moynihan's maxim no longer seems to apply. It seems, today, that we can no longer agree on facts, let alone opinions.
That brings us to Samuel Alito and his wacky "corporations are people who are more important than women" decision.
In it, he writes:
The Hahns and Greens believe that providing the coverage demanded by the HHS regulations is connected to the destruction of an embryo in a way that is sufficient to make it immoral for them to provide the coverage. This belief implicates a difficult and important question of religion and moral philosophy, namely, the circumstances under which it is wrong for a person to perform an act that is innocent in itself but that has the effect of enabling or facilitating the commission of an immoral act by another. Arrogating the authority to provide a binding national answer to this religious and philosophical question, HHS and the principal dissent in effect tell the plaintiffs that their beliefs are flawed. For good reason, we have repeatedly refused to take such a step. See, e.g., Smith, 494 U. S., at 887 (“Repeatedly and in many different contexts, we have warned that courts must not presume to determine . . . the plausibility of a religious claim”)
note: emphasis added by Adam B
So what's he saying? That even if the birth control methods don't actually do what the corporate person believes they do, it doesn't matter. It only matters what the corporate person believes.
That is a remarkable statement by the court. Truth doesn't matter any more. Truthiness is now the official law of the land- so long as your belief in your facts can be claimed to be grounded in religion.
Somewhere Daniel Patrick Moynihan is rolling in his grave. And Stephen Colbert's character is drinking champagne.
The embedding doesn't seem to be working, but watch this Colbert video to see what the Supreme Court just codified into law: