Top 9 Things the Left Has Wrong About the Supreme Court's Birth Control Ruling

A lot of ridiculous things are being said about what the Supreme Court said in the Hobby Lobby case. Here are the nine most goofy, according to Illinois Right to Life. (Click on the headline.)

The wrong things:

1.  Supreme Court Decision cut (or reduced) women’s access to birth control.
2. Women’s lives are now in danger because of the SCOTUS ruling.
3. Religious Liberty now trumps a woman’s right.
4. Men’s vasectomies and Viagra are covered but not women’s birth control.
5. My boss can now join me in my examination room.
6. Bosses are making health decisions for women.
7. This law allows corporations to opt out of any law except for taxes.
8. Expert legal counsel wrote the Mandate and took religious liberty into consideration while authoring it.
9. All men made the ruling, therefore it’s wrong.


Hobby Lobby supporters react to the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Washington, DC. The high court ruled in a 5-4 decision in favor of Hobby Lobby saying that some private companies can be exempted, on religious grounds, from health care reform's requirement that employer sponsored health insurance policies cover contraception. (Mark Wilson / Getty Images /June 30, 2014)

Hobby Lobby supporters react to the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Washington, DC. The high court ruled in a 5-4 decision in favor of Hobby Lobby saying that some private companies can be exempted, on religious grounds, from health care reform's requirement that employer sponsored health insurance policies cover contraception. (Mark Wilson / Getty Images /June 30, 2014)


Leave a comment
  • Gowdy does a good job in explaining how the courts have ruled on separation of Church and State.

  • Sorry, but "Science" [sic] does not say that the 4 types of contraception to which Hobby Lobby objects, are not abortifacent. That is a lie.

    The methods in question work by preventing ovulation and fertilization. None act by preventing implantation of a fertilized egg, and none are efficacious once pregnant. That's what the evidence shows, contrary to the unsupported claims coming from the plaintiffs.

    Ultimately, as always, all of the arguments seem to come down to wanting control and punish women, hidden behind an apparently benevolent message of "life."

    See Amanda Marcotte's latest piece for a much better response to the spurious intentions behind the Green's law suit.

  • In reply to Gardoch:

    Sorry, but you're wrong.

    1. You're playing a word game. You're talking about "pregnancy" when the plaintiffs are talking about "fertilization"--two different things. Fertilization happens prior to implantation of a fertilized egg (i.e. "pregnancy" under your terms) which has its own distinct DNA. For the plaintiffs, personhood begins at fertilization, not as you suggest at implantation. To have a debate, we first have to agree on terms.

    2. You say: "The methods in question work by preventing ovulation and fertilization. NONE ACT BY PREVENTING IMPLANTATION BY PREVENTING IMPLANTATION OF A FERTILIZED EGG, and none are efficacious once pregnant. That's what the evidence shows, contrary to the unsupported claims coming from the plaintiffs." [Emphasis added.]

    Let's examine the research instead of repeating talking points. According to the Family Planning Council:

    "How the IUD works in preventing pregnancy is NOT fully understood. The most recent studies suggest an IUD prevents pregnancy by stopping sperm from reaching an egg that your ovaries have released. It does this by not letting sperm go into the egg. An IUD also changes the lining of the uterus so an egg does not implant in the lining if it has been fertilized. Therefore, the egg has no place to grow." [Emphasis added.]

    Here is more detail, from the May 2014 scholarly article: "Emergency Contraception: A Last Chance to Prevent Unintended Pregnancy," by James Trussell, Elizabeth G. Raymond and Kelly Cleland:

    "Several clinical studies have shown that combined ECPs containing the estrogen ethinyl estradiol and the progestin levonorgestrel can inhibit or delay ovulation.54,55,56,57 This mechanism of action may explain ECP effectiveness when used during the first half of the menstrual cycle, before ovulation has occurred. Some studies have shown histologic or biochemical alterations in the endometrium after treatment with the regimen, leading to the conclusion that combined ECPs may act by impairing endometrial receptivity to subsequent implantation of a fertilized egg.55,58,59,60 However, other more recent studies have found no such effects on the endometrium.54,61,62 Additional possible mechanisms include interference with corpus luteum function; thickening of the cervical mucus resulting in trapping of sperm; alterations in the tubal transport of sperm, egg, or embryo; and direct inhibition of fertilization.4,63,64,65 No clinical data exist regarding the last three of these possibilities.

    "Nevertheless, statistical evidence on the effectiveness of combined ECPs suggests that that if the regimen is as effective as claimed, it must have a mechanism of action other than delaying or preventing ovulation.66 However, if the effectiveness of combined ECPs was overestimated, which it seems to have been in that study, the results would be less persuasive.37 Nevertheless, the important point is that effectiveness and mechanism of action are not independent, a point emphasized in later work.51 For example, a regimen without a post‐fertilization effect could not be 100% effective in typical populations, which will inevitably include some women who take it after fertilization has already occurred."

    To summarize: So, yes, there are conflicting studies and more recent ones demonstrate that the IUD may prevent the sperm from fertilizing the egg. But you are flat wrong when you say (without attribution) "None act by preventing implantation of a fertilized egg...." There are conflicting studies in the literature, evidencing that the question still is open to scientific debate.

  • You didn't even write this list. All you did was copy and paste it from another (biased) website, adding no commentary of your own. Do the work, Byrnes. Then you can be part of the debate.

  • In reply to Jenna Karvunidis:

    I agreed with all the points. What's wrong with posting a link? Would you like to discuss any of them or respond to the substance of my response (above) to Gardoch? Then you would be joining the real debate.

  • In reply to Dennis Byrne:

    Okay so you have a list of 9 things but you don't explain or expand on why the Left has these points wrong. I see now that your point was to have us click onto the link for the explanation but I guess I expected more from a professional columnist and published author.

  • I'm with Jenna completely on this matter. When I read the headline, I thought YOU had done your own analysis on the matter and that it wouldn't simply be a laundry list, but that it would include explanations for WHY each of the 9 things is wrong. Maybe, at least, links to who on the Left is saying those things. To find that, I had to click on the IL Right to Life link. I feel like this was just click bait for IL Right to Life.

    Reading the list, before I clicked over to IL Right to Life, I kept thinking "I have watched and read a lot of media on this matter and I haven't heard many of these statements from anyone."

    Once I clicked over to IL Right to Life, I see that a number of the items are linked to tweets by Planned Parenthood. Okay, fair enough. There's a common belief that Planned Parenthood is somehow a left-wing organization. That's a discussion for a different day.

    But I take complete exception to the IL Right to Life "myth" that "My boss can now join me in my examination room." I don't know anyone who read the PP tweet, "This clearly puts an employer in the exam room with me and my patient, and that's untenable," in a literal sense. It was meant figuratively.

    Prior to the Hobby Lobby decision, by providing me with insurance (even insurance that I paid a fat premium for), my employer was already in the exam room. In early December 2013, my employer announced that they would be changing our insurance from BCBS to Cigna because the cost was significantly lower.

    Being a good advocate for my medical needs and because I have 2 chronic conditions that require regular treatment, I immediately called my doctors to confirm that they were in the Cigna network. Imagine my surprise when, in a matter of 1 hour, I learned that fully HALF of my doctors (3 of 6) were NOT in-network with Cigna.

    This was no problem my employer told me, I could still see those doctors and get treatment from them or I could find new in-network doctors. Either way, no problem, I was told.

    Actually, it was still a problem. My out-of-network deductible was $5,000 on top of the in-network deductible of $2,500. And yes, that's just for me, a single person. Unfortunately, one of the treatments I was getting for one of the chronic conditions would not be covered at all under this new Cigna plan. So it didn't matter if I found a doctor who did it in-network. Cigna wasn't gonna pay for it and I was about 4 months away from being done with that treatment.

    I chose my doctors and treatments because they were all in-network with my insurance company - BCBS. Now, mid-game, those rules were changing. Sure, my personal premium went from about $90 per month to about $60 per month saving me $30 per month or $360 per year. BUT with that fun new $5,000 out-of-network deductible, I was going to have to spend a whole lot more out of my pocket.

    Would my boss actually be in the examination room with me? No. Of course not. BUT my boss's decision to change insurance companies, with no warning for 2014 (early December announcement with 5 days to sign all the paperwork and then figure out a way to see said doctors during the holidays before December 31 while working full-time), has figuratively made him part of my health care decision making all year long.

    I have no doubt that Planned Parenthood meant that bosses would figuratively be in the exam room, just as mine has been all year long.

  • That's quite the impartial source you're lifting from. And the arguments for why the left is wrong are less than convincing.

  • Dear correspondents, thank you for the discussion. As you suggested, I sat down to do my own analysis. I've posted it at:

Leave a comment

  • ChicagoNow is full of win

    Welcome to ChicagoNow.

    Meet our bloggers,
    post comments, or
    pitch your blog idea.

  • Advertisement:
  • Visit my new website

    I'm a freelance writer, editor and author. I can help you with a wide variety of projects. Check out my new website at

  • Meet The Blogger

    Dennis Byrne

    Chicago Tribune contributing op-ed columnist and author of forthcoming historical novel, "Madness: The War of 1812." Reporter, editor and columnist for Chicago Sun-Times and Chicago Daily News. Freelance writer and editor.

  • Subscribe to The Barbershop

    Enter your email address:

    Delivered by FeedBurner

  • Dennis Byrne’s Facebook Fan Page

  • Categories

  • Like me on Facebook

  • Our National Debt

  • Twitter

  • Tags

  • Recent Comments

  • /Users/dennisby/Desktop/trailer.mp4
  • Latest on ChicagoNow

  • Advertisement: