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News Can corporations have religious beliefs?

  1. May 25, 2013 #1
    Citizens United established that corporations have free speech rights, but do they have religious rights?

    Hobby Lobby says that the Affordable Care Act violates the company's religious beliefs, and therefore should be exempt from fines for not following the law.

    http://www.stltoday.com/news/national/hobby-lobby-appeals-birth-control-coverage-mandate/article_2678c83e-99dc-582d-809d-501696c3198a.html [Broken]

    How can a business have religious beliefs? I do not understand their argument.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 6, 2017
  2. jcsd
  3. May 25, 2013 #2


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    The standard argument is that corporations are just a collection of people, and a collection of people don't give up their rights just because they organize themselves as a collection of people.
  4. May 25, 2013 #3
    Yeah, I can see that a corporation can have the right to have religious beliefs, but how can it actually HAVE beliefs? Not to be too Monty Python-esque, it's like saying that a man has the right to be pregnant, but can't actually get pregnant.

    I simply do not see how a legal entity like a corporation can have something as personal as religious beliefs.
  5. May 25, 2013 #4

    Vanadium 50

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    Thsi thread will remain closed. It's based on two false premises.

    The first one, as Office_Shredder points out, is that the point of Citizens United (which is the case involving the legality of individuals pooling their resources to make a political film that no single individual could afford) is that individuals do not surrender their First Amendment rights when acting as a group.

    The second and more directly relevant one is that Hobby Lobby is privately owned and self-insured, and the legal contention is this is a burden on the individual religious liberties of the owners. Additionally, there are corporations that do have religious affiliations - many ministries are legally incorporated.
    Last edited: May 25, 2013
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