The Supreme Court has punted on the basic question of what actions are coercive in a multi-cultural society. The case before them was Zubik v. Burwell, which came about from the absurd claim that filling out a five-line form was an undue burden. As Andrew Seidel, a lawyer for FFRF, noted in recent blog post on Freethought Now!:
One thing has been lost in the coverage about these cases: the form itself. The form that supposedly burdens the free exercise of religion of the schools, nuns, and nonprofits. That form is exactly two pages long and there are only blanks on the first page. Five, count ’em, five blanks: (1) entity name, (2) name of individual filling out the form, (3) mailing address, (4) signature, and (5) date.
This could not have been easier and most district courts agreed. As Prof. Corbin (U of Miami School of Law) recently wrote:
Filing paperwork to obtain a religious exemption does not constitute a substantial burden on religion. If it did, then almost anything would amount to a substantial religious burden.
To add insult to injury, during the deliberations the lead plaintiff and man with odd titles, the Most Reverend David Zubik, urged his parishioners on Good Friday “to let go of resentment, jealousy and feelings of revenge”. He actually said this, while the courts deliberated on his absurd lawsuit that is filled with resentment, jealousy and feelings of revenge against basic human rights.
The notion that employers have any say in the most personal of decisions recalls to mind the form that 2 Political Junkies suggested that we might see at all our work places. The similarities to the form above is downright scary.
Garrett Epps for the Atlantic puts into clear perspective when he wrote “The challengers seemed on track to punch a large hole in the government’s power to enact all kinds of federal social, economic, and welfare programs”. If that challenge holds, citizens will suffer greatly and while the church will sit back and relish, in the words of the Most Reverend, in its resentment, jealousy and feelings of revenge.