ONTD Political

Eden Foods doubles down in birth control flap

10:20 am - 04/15/2013


“I’ve got more interest in good quality long underwear than I have in birth control pills,” the unfamiliar voice on the phone said to me.

It was Michael Potter, the Eden Foods founder and CEO. He was calling to respond to my Salon report from last week, which revealed that his organic food company — which markets itself to a crunchy, liberal crowd — was quietly suing the Obama administration over its requirement that his company’s employee health plan cover birth control. Mostly, he said in the most amiable, avowedly Midwestern way imaginable — at one point he called himself “a pretty simple guy, a Midwestern homemade-soup guy” — he was calling to apologize to me.

It wasn’t that he was upset about my reporting or what his company was doing. He was just sorry my request for comment had gone unanswered due to an oversight. I accepted the apology, and asked why he said he didn’t care about birth control, since he filed a suit about it and all.

“Because I’m a man, number one and it’s really none of my business what women do,” Potter said. So, then, why bother suing? “Because I don’t care if the federal government is telling me to buy my employees Jack Daniel’s or birth control. What gives them the right to tell me that I have to do that? That’s my issue, that’s what I object to, and that’s the beginning and end of the story.” He added, “I’m not trying to get birth control out of Rite Aid or Wal-Mart, but don’t tell me I gotta pay for it.”

But the federal government tells him to do a lot of things, I said. Why sue over this if he had no particular issue with contraception, as the suit — “these procedures almost always involve immoral and unnatural practices,” his court filing explained – clearly alleges he does out of religious conviction? Well, he said, he opposes “using abortion as birth control, definitely.” But the mandate doesn’t cover abortion, I reminded him, only contraception, and emergency contraception is not abortion.

“It’s a morass,” Potter said. “I’m not an expert in anything. I’m not the pope. I’m in the food business. I’m qualified to have opinions about that and not issues that are purely women’s issues. I am qualified to have an opinion about what health insurance I pay for.”

I floated by him the fact that contraceptive coverage is cheaper to pay for than, say, maternity coverage.

Potter replied, “One’s got a little more warmth and fuzziness to it than the other, for crying out loud.”


I asked him what he was hearing from customers about the lawsuit. ”As you can imagine we’re getting a lot of feedback,” Potter said delicately. Indeed, since the story, Eden Foods’ Facebook page has been inundated with complaints and boycott declarations. “Your company’s unfair, judgmental and misogynistic treatment of your employees has lost you yet another customer,” was a typical comment.

He did sound annoyed to be receiving emails telling him to stay out of people’s bedrooms. “I’m not in your bedroom,” he clarified. “Obama’s in your bedroom.”

Did he worry about the impact on his bottom line? “Oh my god,” he said, “from what we’ve seen the last couple of days, it’s a big deal.”

But he isn’t prepared to back off. “I worked my ass off at figuring out what to do on it. I worked hard on it and I made a decision,” he said. “The federal government has no right to do what they’ve done. No constitutional right, no standing.” Apparently, his apology only goes so far.

Source
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nextdrinksonme 15th-Apr-2013 03:39 pm (UTC)
“I’m not in your bedroom,” he clarified. “Obama’s in your bedroom.”


Oh fuck that shit. It's not like Obama is forcing BC pills down every woman's throat. I don't even know how he jumped to that 'logic'.
shortsweetcynic 15th-Apr-2013 03:39 pm (UTC)
*sigh*

well, fuck. another one for the list, i guess.
clevermanka 15th-Apr-2013 03:49 pm (UTC)
No kidding. I'm grateful I eat hardly any processed/packaged foods anymore. With this and the bullshit with Hain foods, I feel for my vegetarian friends.
shipperx 15th-Apr-2013 03:42 pm (UTC)
Irony alert: It's this asshole in 'his employee's bedrooms,' not Obama!
foureyedgirl 15th-Apr-2013 05:58 pm (UTC)
exactly. these fucking bible thumpers are so fucking stupid they don't know what they're even talking about.
akycha 15th-Apr-2013 03:44 pm (UTC)
Sighs and adds Eden Foods to the ever-growing boycott list.
ladypolitik 15th-Apr-2013 03:46 pm (UTC)
Old meme, dude.



Edited at 2013-04-15 04:08 pm (UTC)
hammersxstrings 15th-Apr-2013 04:15 pm (UTC)
Lmao I've never seen it but this is excellent
oceandezignz 15th-Apr-2013 03:48 pm (UTC)
Where's the line to slap this guy in the face forming up? I wanna get into it early.

His ignorance is at Limbaugh levels and it frightens me.
shoujokakumei 15th-Apr-2013 03:52 pm (UTC)
"I am qualified to have an opinion about what health insurance I pay for.”

But you're not qualified to determine what that insurance should or should not cover.

“I’m not in your bedroom,” he clarified. “Obama’s in your bedroom.”

Yes, because the ACA mandates that every woman with insurance coverage use it to obtain birth control and forces it into their bodies. Oh wait, that's only true in the fantasy world this moron lives in.

What a fucking idiot. He can go walk across an ocean of flaming Legos.
violetrose 15th-Apr-2013 04:03 pm (UTC)
He did sound annoyed to be receiving emails telling him to stay out of people’s bedrooms. “I’m not in your bedroom,” he clarified. “Obama’s in your bedroom.”

I'd rather have pro-choicers ~in my bedroom~ by providing myself and others with affordable reproductive healthcare, than sexist, backwards dicks like yourself. Hope that fucking helps..
spiritoftherain 15th-Apr-2013 07:34 pm (UTC)
OT, but a man with a backwards dick occupying your bedroom is a straaaaaaange mental image. o_O;
vulturoso 15th-Apr-2013 04:16 pm (UTC)
As someone who is allergic to dairy, I'd rather drink a gallon of whole milk than get within an inch of this company's soy. Go fuuuuuuuck yourselves.
shadwrayvn 15th-Apr-2013 10:10 pm (UTC)
same here!
hammersxstrings 15th-Apr-2013 04:18 pm (UTC)
These asshats, the transparency and their ignorance at how clear their sexist attitudes are, is unbelievable. So apparently other preventative medication is fine (I bet no one complains about BP meds, etc) but when it comes to birth control, WHOA WHOA WHOA NOW
kittenmommy 15th-Apr-2013 11:11 pm (UTC)

Betcha this jerkface doesn't have a problem with covering Viagra!
aviv_b 15th-Apr-2013 04:19 pm (UTC)
Stupid is as stupid does, bud.

Be annoyed all you want. I bet your employees are a lot more annoyed that you don't think that birth control should be covered by insurance. Add me to your growing list of will not buy (and I can only drink soy milk and have actually bought your product, but no more).
lurkch 15th-Apr-2013 04:28 pm (UTC)
Rats. Anyone know of another company that uses BPA-free cans for tomatoes? It would be nice to have an alternative. :/
caterfree10 15th-Apr-2013 05:03 pm (UTC)
“I’m not trying to get birth control out of Rite Aid or Wal-Mart, but don’t tell me I gotta pay for it.”
THE INSURANCE COMPANIES ARE THE ONES REQUIRED TO PAY FOR THAT SHIT, NOT YOU. YOU ONLY HAVE TO PROVIDE THE FUCKING INSURANCE, YOU SHITSTAIN.

skellington1 15th-Apr-2013 09:18 pm (UTC)
YES. THIS.
gambitia 15th-Apr-2013 05:20 pm (UTC)
1. I like how he conflates Jack Daniels and birth control. Clearly, birth control is a vice, just like alcohol.
2. "What gives them the right to tell me that I have to do that? That’s my issue, that’s what I object to, and that’s the beginning and end of the story." The government already tells you you have to do a whole lot of shit for your employees. The government mandates you pay them minimum wage. It mandates you maintain a safe facility for them. It prevents you from discriminating against employees based on race/gender/etc. It mandates you give them health insurance, which essentially means the government is already mandating "you" provide them with drugs, doctor visits, etc. If it bothers you so much that the government dares to infringe upon your 'rights' as a businessman, why is it just now that you're raising hell? Oh, that's right, because you're a sexist douche. If you truly did not care what the females in your employ were up to when they're off-duty, you wouldn't give two shits about having to include birth control in their insurance.

You think Obama's gone too far, then sue over having to cover flu vaccines or something. There is literally no way for you to come out of this not being a colossal sexist asshat.
blondebeaker 15th-Apr-2013 08:30 pm (UTC)
Well, if a man drinks to much Jack Daniels they sometimes get whiskey dick so maybe to him that is a form of birth control?

(And scary thought I knew a guy in school who tried to say that this was a valid form of BC. >.>)
foureyedgirl 15th-Apr-2013 06:00 pm (UTC)
Good to know. I will never buy anything from this fucker's company again. piece of shit.
eyetosky 15th-Apr-2013 06:50 pm (UTC)
So... essentially, the idea that his employees would have sex makes him feel icky. That's the basis of his argument?
shadowwolf1321 15th-Apr-2013 07:19 pm (UTC)
After reading this I sure as hell will be adding Eden to my boycott list.I don't think I've ever bought anything from this company in the first place..

Edited at 2013-04-15 07:20 pm (UTC)
tigerdreams 15th-Apr-2013 08:23 pm (UTC)
He did sound annoyed to be receiving emails telling him to stay out of people’s bedrooms. “I’m not in your bedroom,” he clarified. “Obama’s in your bedroom.”

No, the President's not in anybody's bedroom; he's in your boardroom, where he belongs. Or maybe he's in your bathroom, making sure you don't shit all over your employees.
ebay313 15th-Apr-2013 08:53 pm (UTC)
This guy just does not seem to get what "none of your fucking business" actually means. I don't understand how one can be so oblivious.
zinnia_rose 15th-Apr-2013 08:56 pm (UTC)
Uh, last time I checked Obama wasn't forcing birth control pills down every woman's throat. So you can go take a long walk off a short bridge.

(Also, TBH I'd rather have Obama in my bedroom than this moron. Just saying.)

(I'll show myself out.)
skellington1 15th-Apr-2013 09:17 pm (UTC)
“It’s a morass,” Potter said. “I’m not an expert in anything. I’m not the pope. I’m in the food business. I’m qualified to have opinions about that and not issues that are purely women’s issues. I am qualified to have an opinion about what health insurance I pay for.”

*beep* *boop* ~honestranslate9000 processing~~ *beep*

"Well, now that you've pointed out the inherent flaws in my logic, my only defense is to complain about how unfair it is that you expect me to use logic in the first place. Sauerkraut."

I floated by him the fact that contraceptive coverage is cheaper to pay for than, say, maternity coverage.

Potter replied, “One’s got a little more warmth and fuzziness to it than the other, for crying out loud.”


*beep *booop*

"This is also why I refuse to pay for my employee's colonoscopies. Here at Eden Foods, we're only interested in Warm Fuzzy Care, and man, those things are gross."
zinnia_rose 15th-Apr-2013 10:28 pm (UTC)
A+ translation.
tabaqui 15th-Apr-2013 09:30 pm (UTC)
Well, it's a good thing i don't buy this product, 'cause i'd be boycotting it as of now. What a jackass.
beoweasel 15th-Apr-2013 09:49 pm (UTC)
OBAMA! STAY OUT OF PEOPLE'S BEDROOMS!

... AS AN EMPLOYER, THAT SHOULD BE MY JOB!!
tsu_ 16th-Apr-2013 12:34 am (UTC)
urgh I bought from them once, will boycott
teacup_werewolf 16th-Apr-2013 01:25 am (UTC)
Looks like I am sticking with Silk. Soy chai lattes maaan
alryssa 16th-Apr-2013 04:48 am (UTC)
I love Blue Diamond's almond milk on my cereal, sadly it's kind of thin for tea :/
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