LIMA — As April Nester, Amber Turnmire, Joe Monbeck and Cory Lykins held up signs Tuesday along Elida Road in front of Hobby Lobby, they were met with a variety of reactions.
“We’ve had some people come up and talk to us or wave,” Nester said.
“We’ve also had a couple of fingers,” Monbeck added.
Despite the mixed reactions, the Auglaize County foursome is adamant in getting its message out, gathering at the closest Hobby Lobby to their location.
“We’re here to raise awareness about the latest Supreme Court decision on Hobby Lobby,” Nester said. “We’re hoping to let all the voters out here know that they need to stay aware and informed, because their Supreme Court has given employers rights over our personal health care decisions.”
The Supreme Court ruled Monday in a 5-4 decision that Hobby Lobby, a business owned by Christians David and Barbara Green, can refuse to provide insurance coverage for employees to receive certain contraceptives they view as abortion-inducing drugs. Monbeck, however, accused the corporation of being hypocritical by refusing to offer these drugs yet profiting from the drug companies at the same time.
“If it’s a question of religious objection, it doesn’t make sense why they would profit from these companies through 401(k) investments,” he said.
The group also objects to this ruling because the Supreme Court is now putting corporations on the same level as individuals when it comes to rights and freedoms.
“Corporations are not people,” Nester said. “They do not have First Amendment rights under the Constitution as people do. Hobby Lobby is a corporate entity that exists for the sole purpose of generating a profit. Corporations cannot vote, raise families or have children.”
In a statement on Hobby Lobby’s website, co-founder Barbara Green lauded the decision, claiming it as a victory for religious liberty.
“Our family is overjoyed by the Supreme Court’s decision,” she said. “The nation’s highest court has re-affirmed the vital importance of religious liberty as one of our country’s founding principles. The Court’s decision is a victory, not just for our family business, but for all who seek to live out their faith.”
Nester and the other protesters, however, are concerned about the physical repercussions for women working at Hobby Lobby.
“If a woman can’t make an informed choice and if doctors can’t talk to them about these four contraceptives that Hobby Lobby has banned, she’s not making the best choice for her because she’s uninformed,” Nester said. “To make the best decision for her and her family, she needs to have all the information.”