Whose benefits?

“Oh, you’re going to Vegas on your vacation?  Well, I’m your boss and gambling is against my religion.  Therefore, you cannot have a vacation this year unless I agree with it.”

“What’s that?  You need a sick day?  Don’t be silly;  I’m a Christian Scientist and I believe in prayer and therefore you have to just pray.  You don’t get a sick day unless I approve it.”

“Hey, what’s that you’re using your salary for?  Did I approve of you buying alcohol?  You know my God doesn’t allow that.  I’m docking your pay that amount.”burns

Many people who cheer the power of your boss to limit what you can use your health care benefits for don’t seem to realize that the benefits are yours.  They are not a gift from an all-benevolent employer.  Your boss has determined that your value as an employee is worth a certain amount:   Your salary plus all your benefits.  Perhaps you negotiated through a union or an employee contract for those benefits.  Perhaps the boss decided he needed to have benefits in order to attract good employees.  Perhaps even the government mandated that the benefits be paid.

The point is this:  those benefits are yours as much as your salary is.  For the Supreme Court to decide that your boss determines what you can use your benefits for is astounding to me.  This is especially true when the decision is about your personal health, which is supposed to be something only you and your doctor should decide.  (This is why the American Medical Association — no great liberal group there — has come out against the Hobby Lobby decision, along with the American Nurses Association, the American Academy of Family Physicians, and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.)

But then again, should we expect anything more from Republicans (including Republican-appointed judges)?    After all, their policy is to make government so small that it can fit into a uterus.