That being said (and an argument for the ages) is it a woman’s right to plan a family according to her terms?

Yes, but with the same caveat as you used, with the Constitution as the final arbiter. In the case of HL, somebody was going to get punched in the nose; it was either going to be the Greens, who are religiously opposed to some of the listed contraceptives, or the employees who because of medical circumstances have no contraceptive options but one of those three.

The Constitution says that religious free expression is an enumerated right. The “right to birth control” is of course NOT enumerated, but is based on the legal principle of “right to privacy”, which is also not enumerated, but is considered to be one of the penumbra of rights implied but not enumerated in the Constitution.

Religion wins that debate, for those reasons.

Remove religion

Can’t. 1st Amendment. The US can’t make LAWS based on religion, but they US can’t negate an enumerated right, either. So, in HL, the law stands that businesses must provide those contraceptives (that’s OK) but there must be a religous “out” clause as well. In my view, it all worked out.

and should the rights of the company’s owners backed by their religious beliefs be held at a higher value than the right of the woman to plan her family?

The question is unsound. Nobody is taking away the right of the woman to plan her family; she retains that right 100%. The issue here is ONLY that HL, with the religious exception, doesn’t wish to pay for certain specific means of family planning. The Constitution contains no rights, enumerated, implied, or in any way, for a person to have something paid for them by a third party. And the woman is, of course, free to find another job that does pay for the coverage (there is no Constitutional right to a certain job, either).

That all said, I agree with you on Gorsuch. The Big Elephant in the Room should not be the Hobby Lobby decision, which will affect in practice very few people; but Roe; and from what I’ve read about Gorsuch, although I expect he is personally anti-abortion, I would fall over backwards if he did not respect stare decisis in the case, and view it as settled law.

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Data Driven Econophile. Muslim, USA born. Been “woke” 2x: 1st, when I realized the world isn’t fair; 2nd, when I realized the “woke” people are full of shit.

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