What Happens If You Just Walk Away?

Hobby LobbyDuring the protests against the Vietnam War, there were those who asked, “What if they had a war and nobody came?”

I’d like to ask a different question: “What happens if you just walk away?” What happens when, in the course of the game, one side just chooses not to play anymore? Or to so radically change the rules that the game can’t continue?

I think I should say at the outset that my own personal politics are immaterial where the Hobby Lobby/HHS mandate debate is concerned. The most I will say regarding my opinion  of the situation in Washington is that the system of government here in the US is broken—and it has been broken for a very, very long time. I’m not about to debate the merits of the Affordable Care Act, or whether or not President Obama is a “good” president.

Clearly, the owners of Hobby Lobby are individuals with Christian convictions that they take very seriously. They take their convictions so seriously, in fact, that they’re willing to take a legal case to the Supreme Court of the United States because they believe that it is morally wrong that they have to pay for contraceptive medicates that may have abortiofacient features. (Please note that I’m not about to get into the debate over whether or not birth control medication is morally acceptable for Christians.)

Let’s take for granted, for just a moment, that I’m right and the system is fundamentally flawed—that Hobby Lobby’s ownership is in fact doing the morally right thing and that there is no hope that the Supreme Court will agree, but will instead force the owners of Hobby Lobby to violate their consciences. Let’s just take all of that as a given.

So let’s imagine, for a moment, that the scenario I’ve outlined above is exactly what has happened. How will the ownership of Hobby Lobby respond?

I have a profound abhorrence for trying to fight a rigged system, so I can only dream that the owners of Hobby Lobby would respond the same way I would:

Accept the request for an interview from the most liberal news broadcast in the country, smile politely at the perfectly dressed anchor, and say, “Decide for yourself whether it is right for us to obey men rather than God. As of midnight tonight, every single store that we own is closed permanently. We won’t even sell off the stock that’s on our shelves. All thirteen thousand employees no longer have a job. And we categorically refuse to pay a single cent in fines which would only go to support a fundamentally unjust system.”

What happens if they simply walk away?


"I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them. For such persons do not serve our Lord Christ, but their own appetites, and by smooth talk and flattery they deceive the hearts of the naïve." (Romans 16:17-18) Please read "The Comments Policy."

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