I have finally reached the breaking point. I can take no more.
It hit me this morning, seeing all of the “outrage” against the Supreme Court over Hobby Lobby while browsing my facebook feed and news sites—fatigue. I simply cannot fight the rising tide of ignorance and mock outrage. That is not to say that I agree or disagree with the ruling. I am just saying that (a) you should probably know what you are talking about to express outrage, and (b) it’s just one case in a term that had more unanimity than any term on the court since 1940.
I guess it’s just confirmation bias. People have a conclusion already formed in their mind that the Supreme Court is trying to wreck the country or whatever and look for data to support that conclusion. Rather than focusing on the momentous, hugely important 4th Amendment cases decided last week, they decide to focus on this relatively unimportant and narrowly decided case.
Whoa, you say. Unimportant? Yes. First off, corporations are not going to be jumping on the religious bandwagon just to save whatever miniscule amount of money that would come from getting this exception. So, this ruling doesn’t actually affect that many people. Companies generally like making money and the consumer backlash would likely cost much more money than what they would save through not providing contraception. Second, think about Hobby Lobby—have you known anyone who works there that didn’t know about their religious beliefs and/or didn’t agree with them. Sure, I guess there are a few, but for the most part, my experience has been that people choose to work there because they agree with the religious tenets of the store. I don’t know much about Conestega Wood (yes, people angrily posting on my facebook feed, there was another case as well—perhaps look into the case before you angrily post about it), but I would imagine it is much the same.
I guess the moral of the story is is that this juxtaposition is so telling of our time. We would rather get angry and upset by a largely symbolic decision rather than get excited about a decision that has changes things on the ground and has potential lasting impact (i.e. the 4th Amendment cases). We would rather focus on the political divide and Justice Ginsburg “slamming” conservatives in her dissent than look at the unanimity on the court. We have a predetermined outlook that the conservative Supreme Court is trying to wreck our country (or vice versa), and look for data to support our preformed conclusion rather than using data to form a conclusion. Don’t get me wrong, I sometimes fall into this trap as well, but I try to stop myself as much as I can.
I’m tired of fighting against this tide, for today at least. Perhaps tomorrow I’ll get back to fighting for rationality and reality.