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Source: (consider it) Thread: Dead Horses: Stonespring's Same Sex Wedding Photography Question
LutheranChik
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Because of who we are and where we live, we are surrounded by people with whom we disagree on any number of issues -- sometimes profoundly disagree. I disapprove of the Amish attitude toward education, which I feel cripples their children's ability to truly make an infomred "choice" to join their church. (It's really not much of a choice -- kind of like being a Southern Baptist teen in a small Southern town getting pressure from parents and peers to "get saved.") But we have Amish friends. We do business with the Amish.

One of the families who provide us with bee supplies belong to a Duggar-like fundamentalist sect that believes in female subordination, arranged marriages, the whole shebang. I find their beliefs and practices bizarre and objectionable. I'm sure they find my partner and I evil incarnate And yet...we buy bee supplies from them. And they take our money.

During one of our volunteer stints at our antique mall a biker couple came in to the store asking us if we had any "vintage bondage-type stuff." They were all covered in upside-down pentagrams and neo-Nazi tats; they wound up purchasing a metal skull from another vendor's booth that just exuded weird, scary vibes. What did we do? We rang up the purchase and were glad to see their backsides headed out the door.

We are Democrats in a sea of not only Republicans but Tea Partiers...people who, despite making great show of their "Christian values," treat Faux News with greater respect than Jesus Christ. Our butcher is one of these guys. Our dogsitters are like this. We still have civil relations with them.

I have to confess feeling a bit offended that apparently I am not as morally upright a person as the people the other LC is defending here because I practice ethical Realpolitik when it comes to coexisting on a day-to-day basis with my fellow human beings, instead of sequestering myself in some righteous ghetto where my like-minded friends and I can all congratulate ourselves on our purity. (That's what the Internet is for.)
[Devil]

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Arabella Purity Winterbottom

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quote:
Originally posted by LutheranChik:
...coexisting on a day-to-day basis with my fellow human beings, instead of sequestering myself in some righteous ghetto where my like-minded friends and I can all congratulate ourselves on our purity. (That's what the Internet is for.) [Devil]

Couldn't agree more!

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Hell is full of the talented and Heaven is full of the energetic. St Jane Frances de Chantal

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LutheranChik
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Sorry for the double-post, but this came to mind as I hit the "post" button:

Why is it that the moral fastidiousness of conservative Christian wedding photographers, bakers, etc. seems exclusively focused on gay people?

Example: In my part of the world there is still a significant sector of Christian groups who believe that the Pope is the Antichrist; that Roman Catholicism is some sort of regurgitated Classical paganism with a Christian gloss; and that a sacramental understanding of Holy Communion and the Real Presence is a creepy, cannibalistic and idolatrous distortion of the Lord's Supper. That attitude may be soft-pedaled or equivocated with a half-hearted assertion that maybe some Roman Catholics might be Real Christians [tm] if they've had an emoti8ve "born again" experience...but basically these folks believe, with all their hearts, that Roman Catholics are unsaved idolators headed for the Nether Regions.

Why is it that I suspect that, even with that sincerely held belief, the born-again baker who balks at baking a wedding cake for two men or two women will nonetheless create a First Communion cake for a Roman Catholic family without putting up a protest? I mean, frankly, statistically there's probably more call for First Communion cakes in Arizona than for same-sex wedding cakes. If a same-sex wedding cake is somehow understood as a personal endorsement of that couple's marriage, then woudln't a First Communion cake be a personal endorsement of a sacrament of the Roman Catholic Church?

How about a Jewish family wanting a bar or bat mitzvah photographer? If you're a conservative Christian who believes that Jews are doomed for perdition for "rejecting Jesus," then isn't agreeing to help in the celebration of a bar or bat mitzvah encouraging Jewish people to continue to "reject Jesus"?

Or how about a church that believes that only marriages conducted by its own ordained clergy are legitimate marriages -- that all others are the moral equivalent of "shacking up." If you're a baker or wedding photographer or tuxedo renter with those beliefs, isn't contributing to the festivities of a non-church-sanctioned wedding an indication that one approves of illegitimate cohabitation?

Why do I not see/hear studiously "Christian" businesspeople working themselves into weeping in sackcloth and ashes over these equivalent moral business dilemmas?

Just asking. I'll be quiet now.

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Soror Magna
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I once sublet my apartment (with a discount for cat-sitting) to a young woman studying at one of the local theological colleges who was heavily involved in gay conversion ministry. I seriously did consider refusing her because of her hateful version of Christianity, but in retrospect, I'm glad I did the right thing. It's not like she would have abandoned her idiotic ideas if I turned her down.

And that's why the "I won't bake your cake because I don't approve of you" attitude is so silly. It doesn't stop gay people from being gay. It doesn't stop them from getting married. It doesn't stop them from eating cake. It doesn't stop straight people who have done really terrible things from getting a cake. It's just an excuse to be rude.

OTOH, it also makes me think it would be really fun to have a day when non-Christians could refuse service to Christians. Better yet, let's have an atheist/agnostic day and deny all services to all the believers of all faiths. Sound like fun?

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LutheranChik
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Seriously, people who are so scrupulous (I'm giving them the benefit of the doubt here) that daily interactions with a religiously and culturally diverse public sends them into moral panic should really be living in, say, a utopian community or monastic order or some other situation where they don't have to interact with people Not Like Them. (And good luck with that.)

To the degree that these people are just bigoted assholes -- I'm not as sanguine about enabling their overt bigotry either legally or socially. If I have to choose between living in a society where both the rule of law and general consensus compel bigots to make nice in public, then piss and moan in private about how no one respects their bigotry, and a society where "freedom" becomes a convenient vehicle for Balkanization, incivility and chaos, I'm voting for socially-enforced civility, no matter how insincere in some quarters.

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Crœsos
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I noted this on a related thread, but some enterprising reporter decided to research what two of the bakers in question would be willing to bake cakes for. Divorce, human stem cell research, and a pagan solstice party were okay for a baker who refused to make a wedding cake for a same-sex couple. It's hard to look at that sort of thing and not conclude that "religious conscience" is just a euphemism for "hating gay people".

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Humani nil a me alienum puto

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LutheranChik
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I also take exception to the idea that, if I'm The Other in a given social situation, that the onus is on me to manage the anxiety of the people around me over my presence. In other words, it's not my job to self-segregate my business in places where I think I'll be accepted as an equal citizen. It's not about "flaunting" one's ethnicity or orientation or age or religion or whatever; it's about going about in a civilized, multicultural society with the general expectation that I can freely exchange money for goods and services.

We bought package bees and supplies from the Duggaresque fundamentalists because they are one of the few places in our state that sell them; they were closer than the other options, which mattered because all the options were at least two hours from home; they had better follow-up service/support; and they came recommended. Why should DP and I be expected to say, "Oh, dear. We mustn't test these conservative Christians' bound consciences by appearing at their store as two women who obviously live in the same household and are engaged in a joint purchase for the backyard. Let's buy our bees 50 miles farther away at the other place"? Why should a family of color, or for whom English is a second language, be expected to bypass my admittedly redneck little town in rural Michigan for a lunch break so as not to rile the locals? That is ridiculous and wrong in a civilized society.

And I also call bullshit on giving businesses a pass to discriminate. If I were being discriminated by a restaurant, I would keep a written record of that; I'd send a written complaint to corporate, if it's a franchise; I'd also hit Yelp and Trip Advisor and Urbanspoon and share my experience; and if I belonged to an advocacy group for my particular minority, I'd certainly let other people in my situation know about the behavior of this business owner.

In our household we feel we give all businesses we deal with a pretty fair shake -- one of my friends calls me a walking state Chamber of Commerce because I like to tell people about regional businesses we love. But we are also fair when it comes to calling out poor/sketchy service and business practices. It's helping our neighbors, IMHO, in either situation.

[ 24. February 2014, 14:18: Message edited by: LutheranChik ]

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Pigwidgeon

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I can't find a link on-line, but I heard on the radio this morning that some of the idiot Republican legislators who voted for the Arizona bill are having second thoughts. Some even want to re-vote before sending the bill to the Governor. I guess the reaction hasn't been what they expected.

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"...that is generally a matter for Pigwidgeon, several other consenting adults, a bottle of cheap Gin and the odd giraffe."
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Palimpsest
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You asked why the bakers are only opposed to baking cakes for gay people and not Jews, Catholics and maybe Atheists.

The answer is, that's what's preached at them in church. They don't get told that the evil Catholics are going to ruin their marriages the way the gays are doing. The source of the poison is in the Churches.

I in general work with and patronize some businesses run by religious conservatives. I must say I'm a bit dubious when I see little fish stickers by the cash register or other little hints that they really want other Christian customers. I console myself with the thought that I've certainly found a large number of "proudly gay" businesses that provided terrible service compared to unidentified businesses. I suspect it's the same for many businesses that flaunt their religious credentials.

[ 24. February 2014, 20:56: Message edited by: Palimpsest ]

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LutheranChik
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Well, and that's something too, isn't it. I don't necessarily seek out gay-friendly businesses to help The Family, nor do I automatically assume that they have better goods and services than someone else down the street. I shouldn't be expected to limit my patronage of businesses to ones whose owners look or think like me. Again, in a multicultural society, it's ridiculous. Anyone who wants to do business in a culturally homogenous setting, go create a gated community with its own commercial district.

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lilBuddha
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quote:
Originally posted by Pigwidgeon:
I can't find a link on-line, but I heard on the radio this morning that some of the idiot Republican legislators who voted for the Arizona bill are having second thoughts. Some even want to re-vote before sending the bill to the Governor. I guess the reaction hasn't been what they expected.

Link

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Erroneous Monk
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I read this story yesterday.

I can sort of understand why the business owners would feel uncomfortable with the "hypocrisy" of profiting from an event that they have actively campaigned to ban.

Of course, my answer to that would be that they should stop their discriminatory campaigning, rather than refuse service to people on the grounds of their sexuality.

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And I shot a man in Tesco, just to watch him die.

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lilBuddha
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And always with the "Don't discriminate against me for discriminating against you, don't you know that discrimination is wrong?"

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LutheranChik
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The best response I've seen so far to the "religious liberty" argument in favor of this and similar bills: Is Your Religious Liberty Being Threatened?

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Pigwidgeon

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Even Mitt Romney (yes, THAT Mitt Romney) is urging the Governor not to sign the Arizona bill. Our two Republican Senators, too.

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"...that is generally a matter for Pigwidgeon, several other consenting adults, a bottle of cheap Gin and the odd giraffe."
~Tortuf

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Gwai
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quote:
Originally posted by Erroneous Monk:
I read this story yesterday.

I can sort of understand why the business owners would feel uncomfortable with the "hypocrisy" of profiting from an event that they have actively campaigned to ban.

And if that were really the biggest issue, they could solve it by having a statement on their website or wherever admitting that they had campaigned to ban such marriages, but were of course happy to help bake for/photograph/etc people celebrating said marriages.

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A master of men was the Goodly Fere,
A mate of the wind and sea.
If they think they ha’ slain our Goodly Fere
They are fools eternally.


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Erroneous Monk
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quote:
Originally posted by Gwai:
quote:
Originally posted by Erroneous Monk:
I read this story yesterday.

I can sort of understand why the business owners would feel uncomfortable with the "hypocrisy" of profiting from an event that they have actively campaigned to ban.

And if that were really the biggest issue, they could solve it by having a statement on their website or wherever admitting that they had campaigned to ban such marriages, but were of course happy to help bake for/photograph/etc people celebrating said marriages.
Good point.

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And I shot a man in Tesco, just to watch him die.

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Palimpsest
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quote:
Originally posted by Erroneous Monk:
I read this story yesterday.

I can sort of understand why the business owners would feel uncomfortable with the "hypocrisy" of profiting from an event that they have actively campaigned to ban.

Of course, my answer to that would be that they should stop their discriminatory campaigning, rather than refuse service to people on the grounds of their sexuality.

Or they could announce they will give the profits to their church to continue the homophobic opposition. That would probably minimize the same sex marriage business.
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LutheranChik
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Arizona Gov. Brewer just vetoed the "religious freedom" legislation. But similar bills are still on the table in Missouri and Georgia.

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Bullfrog.

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Good news from Mississippi.

[ 27. February 2014, 01:32: Message edited by: Bullfrog. ]

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Some say that man is the root of all evil
Others say God's a drunkard for pain
Me, I believe that the Garden of Eden
Was burned to make way for a train. --Josh Ritter, Harrisburg

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lilBuddha
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quote:
Originally posted by LutheranChik:
Arizona Gov. Brewer just vetoed the "religious freedom" legislation. But similar bills are still on the table in Missouri and Georgia.

I was a bit surprised. A mix of "Oh, this makes more sense" when finding out it was likely in response to economic pressure and a bit more shock when finding out who applied the pressure.

[ 27. February 2014, 17:39: Message edited by: lilBuddha ]

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Crœsos
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quote:
Originally posted by lilBuddha:
I was a bit surprised. A mix of "Oh, this makes more sense" when finding out it was likely in response to economic pressure and a bit more shock when finding out who applied the pressure.

Well, there is precedent for that sort of thing.

quote:
But the movement [to observe Martin Luther King, Jr. Day in Arizona] got serious traction when the National Football League threatened in 1990 to move the Super Bowl that was scheduled to be played in Tempe’s Sun Devil Stadium in 1993.

Stewart said that local leaders who were not interested in his campaign before the NFL threat had a sudden change of heart.

“They returned my calls when the NFL said they wouldn’t come for the Super Bowl,” he said.

Eppinger said corporate leaders in Arizona began to realize, “You can kiss the Super Bowl goodbye, you can kiss some of the conventions and business goodbye, because no one wants to come to a state without the holiday.”

But somebody forgot to tell Arizona voters.

The Legislature in 1989 adopted a King holiday, replacing Columbus Day. That angered Italian-American groups, who petitioned the new holiday to a vote. The Legislature passed another measure in 1990, keeping both King and Columbus holidays, but it was too late. The issue went to voters, 76 percent of whom rejected the King holiday.

The NFL moved the 1993 Super Bowl to Pasadena, Calif.

“Half a billion dollars including the Super Bowl would be lost because of the way they mishandled the holiday,” Stewart said.

This kind of thing has to be on the minds of the Arizona business community. They've got a really applicable cautionary tale that happened within living memory.

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Crœsos
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Just a quick update on this story. The U.S. Supreme Court has refused to hear the wedding photographer case, leaving all lower court rulings standing. According to other reports, the Supreme Court considered whether to grant certiorari at four different conferences. Some see this as the court being interested in the case, but I see it as having one strong partisan on the court who couldn't get three of his colleagues to agree to hearing the case.

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Humani nil a me alienum puto

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stonespring
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The "religious freedom" law may have been bad enough for business for the governor to veto it in AZ, but not enough apparently in Mississippi, and it is being considered in other states. I think the Supreme Court is going to have to address this issue eventually, because these laws will be challenged.
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Crœsos
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quote:
Originally posted by stonespring:
I think the Supreme Court is going to have to address this issue eventually, because these laws will be challenged.

Well, that's one of the benefits of being the Supreme Court. They only "have" to take the cases they want to take. Eventually they'll make some kind of ruling, but historically the U.S. Supreme Court has been "the last one to the party" on these kinds of questions.

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Humani nil a me alienum puto

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Crœsos
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Bumping the thread to include the latest of the "we don't serve your kind here" incidents.

quote:
"We don't serve fags here."

That's what a Pittsburg [Texas] couple said they were told while leaving a local restaurant. The men went to eat at Big Earl’s Restaurant in Pittsburg [Texas] for breakfast Tuesday morning. They said they enjoyed their food, paid for their meals, but it’s what the waitress said on their way out that ruined the whole experience.

Including the slur was a "nice" nod to tradition in these kinds of incidents. There's no specific mention of whether the management of Big Earl's hates gay people for religious reasons or for other reasons. Does that make a difference?

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Humani nil a me alienum puto

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Leorning Cniht
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Jane R brought this up in the Fuckwit thread. The political speech angle is a new wrinkle in the tapestry of "we don't serve your kind here". I think there's rather more of a case to argue with this one.

quote:
Originally posted by Leorning Cniht:
quote:
Originally posted by Jane R:

In other news, someone is objecting to being asked to bake a 'gay cake' on the grounds that doing so will violate their Christian business ethic.

Actually, that one's a bit interesting. We've had a couple of cases in the US recently (cake for gay wedding, photographer for gay wedding) where the businessfolk have claimed that their rights are being violated by forcing them to "endorse" gay marriage, and the courts held that photographing a gay wedding did not imply making a statement in favour of the existence of gay marriage.

In this case, however, the cake is explicitly political speech - it's a cake saying "support gay rights" for a gay rights organization.

This isn't asking whether your Christian business can refuse to serve Muslims, it's asking whether your Christian business can refuse to print pamphlets denying the divinity of Christ.


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Crœsos
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quote:
Originally posted by Leorning Cniht:
This isn't asking whether your Christian business can refuse to serve Muslims, it's asking whether your Christian business can refuse to print pamphlets denying the divinity of Christ.

These may not be separate things. Say your local Mosque or Synagogue wants you to print programs for their services, or pamphlets detailing their beliefs. Is there a meaningful distinction here between refusing to serve Muslims and refusing to serve someone because they don't believe in your God?

[ 09. July 2014, 14:11: Message edited by: Crœsos ]

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Humani nil a me alienum puto

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lilBuddha
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LC,

From the article:
quote:
The law is really clear. You cannot pick and choose which sides of the law apply to you.




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I put on my rockin' shoes in the morning
Hallellou, hallellou

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Gwai
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quote:
Originally posted by lilBuddha:
LC,

From the article:
quote:
The law is really clear. You cannot pick and choose which sides of the law apply to you.



I don't think the law would be the same in the U.S. though (where LC lives.) As s/he notes, the decision in the previous bakery cake did separate political speech making a statement from normal life. I would agree that this cake was indeed a statement, albeit one I agree with.

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A master of men was the Goodly Fere,
A mate of the wind and sea.
If they think they ha’ slain our Goodly Fere
They are fools eternally.


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leo
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quote:
Originally posted by Crœsos:
quote:
Originally posted by Leorning Cniht:
This isn't asking whether your Christian business can refuse to serve Muslims, it's asking whether your Christian business can refuse to print pamphlets denying the divinity of Christ.

These may not be separate things. Say your local Mosque or Synagogue wants you to print programs for their services, or pamphlets detailing their beliefs. Is there a meaningful distinction here between refusing to serve Muslims and refusing to serve someone because they don't believe in your God?
If you are a printer, your job is to pring.

I fail to see why a Christian cannot print Muslim info. any more than why a Muslim cannot print Christian info.

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Leorning Cniht
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quote:
Originally posted by Crœsos:
Is there a meaningful distinction here between refusing to serve Muslims and refusing to serve someone because they don't believe in your God?

That's not the distinction. The question is whether there is a meaningful distinction between printing restaurant menus, say, for a Muslim customer and printing pamphlets denying Christ's divinity, say, for the same customer.

Note to leo - I am not trying to argue that a Christian must refuse to print such material. I am asking whether he should be permitted to refuse to print such material.

Would you allow the printer to refuse to print, let's say, BNP campaign literature for a local election?

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Jane R
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leo:
quote:
If you are a printer, your job is to pring.
This conjures up a wonderful image of massed choirs of printers singing "Priiinnnggg!" in glorious eight-part harmony...

Ahem. Sorry, everyone. As you were.

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lilBuddha
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But printing a cake which advocates SSM in no way denies Christ's divinity.

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Leorning Cniht
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# 17564

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quote:
Originally posted by lilBuddha:
But printing a cake which advocates SSM in no way denies Christ's divinity.

Also, not all gay men are Muslim. It was an analogy, to try and avoid getting the discussion hung up on whether Christians should oppose legal same-sex marriage. Because that's not the point here.

The point is that this cake is explicit advocacy for a position that the baker is opposed to, in a way that a same-sex marriage itself isn't. This makes it different from the wedding cake and photographer cases.

The question is whether this difference is sufficient to change the legal position. It is not a question about whether opposing legal SSM is the correct position for someone with a "traditional" understanding of Christian marriage to take, and it is not a question about whether the "traditional" understanding of marriage is the correct position for a Christian to take.

You could equally ask whether a printer in the US should be legally obliged to print material advocating affirmative action in the hiring of state employees. If the printer is opposed to affirmative action, should he be able to refuse to work for its advocacy?

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Ricardus
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I'm all in favour of same-sex marriage, but I share LC's uneasiness here.

The issue isn't that the bakery refused to serve gay customers. As far as we can tell, the bakery would have been happy to produce a birthday cake for a gay man and would have refused the pro-SSM cake even if asked by a heterosexual.

I don't think it's a moral principle that tradesmen have to accept every piece of work that is sent their way. There was a case round here recently where postal workers from West Lancashire refused to distribute promotional copies of The Sun because of its coverage of the Hillsborough disaster. I don't think anyone would claim Rupert Murdoch's rights were infringed.

For the same reason, I'm not comfortable with the suggestion that there are certain jobs a tradesman must accept if offered by a member of the public. If a baker refused to bake a cake bearing the words 'Support the weak', because he was an Ayn Rand fanatic, one might find him morally reprehensible but he hasn't done anything that is against the law.

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Then the dog ran before, and coming as if he had brought the news, shewed his joy by his fawning and wagging his tail. -- Tobit 11:9 (Douai-Rheims)

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Leorning Cniht
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quote:
Originally posted by Ricardus:
There was a case round here recently where postal workers from West Lancashire refused to distribute promotional copies of The Sun because of its coverage of the Hillsborough disaster. I don't think anyone would claim Rupert Murdoch's rights were infringed.

The status of the Royal Mail as a common carrier calls that one in to question, though. When you have a state-granted monopoly on the delivery of letters, you must be obliged to deliver everyone's letters.

The wriggle-room here, no doubt, is that this is unaddressed advertising, which whilst being a nice little earner for the Post Office isn't actually "mail".

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Crœsos
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quote:
Originally posted by Leorning Cniht:
You could equally ask whether a printer in the US should be legally obliged to print material advocating affirmative action in the hiring of state employees. If the printer is opposed to affirmative action, should he be able to refuse to work for its advocacy?

I'm not sure if you could "equally ask", given that virtually no generally-applicable anti-discrimination laws cover "political position" as a protected category.

I'm generally suspicious of religion being used as a justification for otherwise prohibited actions. The level of hair-splitting involved is like arguing that a a business's "No Jews" policy is discriminatory but its "No Yarmulkes" policy is just fine.

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Humani nil a me alienum puto

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Leorning Cniht
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# 17564

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quote:
Originally posted by Crœsos:
I'm not sure if you could "equally ask", given that virtually no generally-applicable anti-discrimination laws cover "political position" as a protected category.

That's why I picked affirmative action, because race is certainly a protected category in everyone's anti-discrimination laws, and campaigning for affirmative action has racial content in the same sense that campaigning for same-sex marriage has sexual orientation content.
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Leorning Cniht
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quote:
Originally posted by Crœsos:
The level of hair-splitting involved is like arguing that a a business's "No Jews" policy is discriminatory but its "No Yarmulkes" policy is just fine.

Which would, I think, be exactly the law of the land as regards French schools (and possibly other state buildings?). But that's beside the point.
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Matt Black

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The bakery case is an interesting one and I for one don't envy the Equality Commission in trying to disentangle the issues here. For starters, it's in Norn Iron, where the equality laws and regs don't apply to the same extent as the rest of the UK. Then there's the issue of "is it discrimination?" If the bakery can show that they would adopt the same stance to a straight couple asking for the same slogan, then I'm not sure the discrimination dog will hunt. There is of course the 'association provision' of the law and regs but I can't remember whether this bit applies to Ulster.

So much for the law; it doesn't necessarily help us with the moral issues. What if the tables were turned: a gay couple running a bakery are asked by a hardcore evo couple to produce a cake iced with the slogan "Ban gay 'marriage'" (scare quotes added for greater insult!) - I think they could legally refuse to do it but could they morally?

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"Protestant and Reformed, according to the Tradition of the ancient Catholic Church" - + John Cosin (1594-1672)

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Ricardus
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quote:
Originally posted by Leorning Cniht:
The status of the Royal Mail as a common carrier calls that one in to question, though. When you have a state-granted monopoly on the delivery of letters, you must be obliged to deliver everyone's letters.

The wriggle-room here, no doubt, is that this is unaddressed advertising, which whilst being a nice little earner for the Post Office isn't actually "mail".

Actually the postal service is open to competition in some areas and I think the distribution of spam is one of them - I may be wrong though.

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Then the dog ran before, and coming as if he had brought the news, shewed his joy by his fawning and wagging his tail. -- Tobit 11:9 (Douai-Rheims)

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Ricardus
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# 8757

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quote:
Originally posted by Crœsos:


I'm generally suspicious of religion being used as a justification for otherwise prohibited actions.

And AFAICS neither LC nor I have used religion as an excuse. The question is whether there are certain orders that a baker cannot refuse when asked by a member of the public. If such orders can be shown to exist, then I agree religion is not a reason to refuse them.
quote:
The level of hair-splitting involved is like arguing that a a business's "No Jews" policy is discriminatory but its "No Yarmulkes" policy is just fine.
No, it isn't. It is highly unlikely that anyone who is not Jewish would wear a yarmulke in the workplace, so a yarmulke ban is clear indirect discrimination against Jews. However it seems to me that both gay and straight people might want a cake promoting SSM, so the case for indirect discrimination is far less clear-cut.

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Then the dog ran before, and coming as if he had brought the news, shewed his joy by his fawning and wagging his tail. -- Tobit 11:9 (Douai-Rheims)

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Penny S
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# 14768

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I would have liked to know that Sun was coming so I could have put up a notice saying I didn't want it. It only got kicked out of the door and into the bin cupboard, but I would rather it hadn't arrived at all.
Do I have the right to refuse post office delivered stuff? Knowing that it's keeping the 'Royal Mail' going. (quotes on account of its unwanted privatisation.)

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ChastMastr
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# 716

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I'm a bit late to the party here, but I had to respond to this...

quote:
Originally posted by Lamb Chopped:
To take a more serious example, there are restaurants and even banks in this town that won't serve my mixed race family. I may point and laugh, or write nasty reviews on the internet, but in the end it is their freedom--freedom even to make asses of themselves. For me to try to force such people would be as small-minded and inexcusable as they are.

quote:
Originally posted by Lamb Chopped:
The Denny's down the street won't serve me and my family.

This is, and rightly so, illegal. This is not something they have a right to do.

This is wrong, and I hope they have had their asses sued off, or that the manager behind such crap has been fired by Denny's corporate. They've specifically, as a company, gone to great lengths to leave this kind of thing far behind them

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Denny%27s#Racial_discrimination_lawsuits

(and good for them!)--so, yes, I would try to go there again and report them if it happens. Ditto the banks--that's just immoral and illegal.

PS: I can't fix my URL coding above [Frown]

[ 11. July 2014, 10:53: Message edited by: Louise ]

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Lamb Chopped
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Yes, it's illegal. But the root question of this thread is whether certain things SHOULD BE illegal, not whether they are or not.

Obviously these people are wrongheaded asses. But in the circumstances in which my family lives, their discrimination against us does not create sufficient harm or even discomfort to us that I feel moved to sue their asses. (I content myself with telling everybody I know what they've done, which, coming from a strategically placed leader in a large, growing, wants-to-go-out-to-eat and has-money-to-bank-now ethnic community, is almost virally bad publicity. [Devil] )

IMHO there is a huge difference between the assholes who won't serve us at Denny's (fine; we'll go down the street and spend lots more money at the other restaurants) and the situation where, say, a hospital or firefighter refuses to serve someone. The one is a minor nuisance (as is the photo thing); the other is potentially life-threatening. Similarly, there is a difference between the Denny's place doing this to us in a time and place (Lousiana, ca. 1960?) where we have few or no alternatives, and doing it to us in Never-Mind-City in 2014, where the whole culture is on our side now.

I don't like criminalizing rudeness simply because one feels that rudeness ought to be punished or "taught a lesson." That's killing a spider with a cannon. One can punish or teach lessons far more easily (and effectively) using social and economic tools.

The proper response to rude but essentially toothless behavior is bad publicity and a boycott. No need to force a person, or a group of people, out of their livelihood via the law. If the behavior is sufficiently shameful, the bad publicity/boycott thing will handle that matter all by itself.

And if the behavior is truly religiously motivated, the person will not be able to complain of being victimized by the state for his/her faith, which leads to feelings of martyrdom. He/she will instead have to suck it up and deal when ordinary people make known their disapproval in clear but non-coercive ways. Which is ne of the ordinary troubles of life every Christian faces, though hopefully for good reasons and not for bad. Still, social disapproval is far less likely to be taken for a form of martyrdom.

[ 11. July 2014, 01:31: Message edited by: Lamb Chopped ]

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Er, this is what I've been up to (book).
Oh, that you would rend the heavens and come down!

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Palimpsest
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# 16772

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quote:
Originally posted by Lamb Chopped:
Yes, it's illegal. But the root question of this thread is whether certain things SHOULD BE illegal, not whether they are or not.

Obviously these people are wrongheaded asses. But in the circumstances in which my family lives, their discrimination against us does not create sufficient harm or even discomfort to us that I feel moved to sue their asses. (I content myself with telling everybody I know what they've done, which, coming from a strategically placed leader in a large, growing, wants-to-go-out-to-eat and has-money-to-bank-now ethnic community, is almost virally bad publicity. [Devil] )

IMHO there is a huge difference between the assholes who won't serve us at Denny's (fine; we'll go down the street and spend lots more money at the other restaurants) and the situation where, say, a hospital or firefighter refuses to serve someone. The one is a minor nuisance (as is the photo thing); the other is potentially life-threatening. Similarly, there is a difference between the Denny's place doing this to us in a time and place (Lousiana, ca. 1960?) where we have few or no alternatives, and doing it to us in Never-Mind-City in 2014, where the whole culture is on our side now.

I don't like criminalizing rudeness simply because one feels that rudeness ought to be punished or "taught a lesson." That's killing a spider with a cannon. One can punish or teach lessons far more easily (and effectively) using social and economic tools.

The proper response to rude but essentially toothless behavior is bad publicity and a boycott. No need to force a person, or a group of people, out of their livelihood via the law. If the behavior is sufficiently shameful, the bad publicity/boycott thing will handle that matter all by itself.

And if the behavior is truly religiously motivated, the person will not be able to complain of being victimized by the state for his/her faith, which leads to feelings of martyrdom. He/she will instead have to suck it up and deal when ordinary people make known their disapproval in clear but non-coercive ways. Which is ne of the ordinary troubles of life every Christian faces, though hopefully for good reasons and not for bad. Still, social disapproval is far less likely to be taken for a form of martyrdom.

In the U.S. the history has been that negative publicity and shame was insufficient to end segregation. The Woolworth's Sit-ins and boycotts only ended local segregation. It took laws to get dismantle segregation.

I'm not sure if you think that passing laws desegregating public accommodation were wrong, or it's only wrong if the discrimination is toothless. The latter would lead to an odd cycle; laws are ok when there's a lot of segregation and wrong when there's a little segregation.

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Lamb Chopped
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# 5528

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quote:
I'm not sure if you think that passing laws desegregating public accommodation were wrong, or it's only wrong if the discrimination is toothless. The latter would lead to an odd cycle; laws are ok when there's a lot of segregation and wrong when there's a little segregation.
The latter. If there is a lot of segregation/discrimination, the situation is pretty much bound to be life-threatening fairly often, or at least harmful to basic human needs such as food, healthcare, jobs, shelter, etc. Thus the use of law is appropriate. If there are only minor instances (such as the Denny's case that happens to my family), none of those things are at risk. The most that will happen is a spoiled meal with a temporary rise in blood pressure. And I can use social pressure to arrange negative karma for that, if I want. No need to drag in the blunt instrument of the law. In the meantime we go to one of a hundred other welcoming restaurants, mentally marking down the Denny's as a bad egg.

Which brings us back to the OP. Is a wedding photographer a rare resource? No. There are scads of them. Is anyone's life and health, occupation, or even convenience, going to be threatened by allowing said photographer to practice his religious views, even if you consider them wrongheaded? No. The couple in question will trash talk him, and there will be a media shitstorm (and behold) and there will doubtless be negative financial consequences for the position the photographer has chosen to take. Fine. But why drag in the law? If the man truly is acting out of religious conviction, he will be forced to give up his livelihood for something he cannot change, given his worldview. That's a really out-of-proportion penalty for the inconvenience and emotional discomfort he caused the couple by refusing to work for them. And if he DOES cave in (unlikely, if his motivation is truly religious)--Is forced conversion on pain of losing one's livelihood a good thing? I really don't think so. Forcible conversion is generally held to be an evil, not a social good.

Tell me, would it be a good thing if I sued that Denny's restaurant in court and managed to get them shut down? The financial damages and legal impact on the corporation as a whole might very well get that location shut down. Fine. But then at least a dozen people are out of jobs, and their families suffer for it. For what, insulting me? I don't rate my emotional comfort that highly. Let my [idiot] neighbor live and work and hold his stupid-ass views, as long as they are not doing others substantial, demonstrable harm. And in this political climate, they aren't.

IMHO, those who would punish every minor instance with the full force of law ought to look carefully at their own motives. Is this truly a thirst for justice, or is it just plain old sinful revenge?

If I sued Denny's, I know what it would be.

--------------------
Er, this is what I've been up to (book).
Oh, that you would rend the heavens and come down!

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Antisocial Alto
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# 13810

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quote:
Originally posted by Lamb Chopped:

IMHO there is a huge difference between the assholes who won't serve us at Denny's (fine; we'll go down the street and spend lots more money at the other restaurants) and the situation where, say, a hospital or firefighter refuses to serve someone. The one is a minor nuisance (as is the photo thing); the other is potentially life-threatening.

And yet one of the pieces of evidence used in the Brown v. Board case was the Doll Test, which showed the harm done to black children's self-worth by segregation. Apparently the Supreme Court thinks (or thought) that harm doesn't have to be life-threatening to be important.

It's not about the actions of one business. It's about allowing the idea to flourish that it's OK to tell certain people that they're second-class citizens. And groups of people repeatedly being told they're worthless *does* cause harm to society- look at the despair in our inner cities and the suicide rate among our gay teens.

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Palimpsest
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quote:
Originally posted by Lamb Chopped:
quote:
I'm not sure if you think that passing laws desegregating public accommodation were wrong, or it's only wrong if the discrimination is toothless. The latter would lead to an odd cycle; laws are ok when there's a lot of segregation and wrong when there's a little segregation.
The latter. If there is a lot of segregation/discrimination, the situation is pretty much bound to be life-threatening fairly often, or at least harmful to basic human needs such as food, healthcare, jobs, shelter, etc. Thus the use of law is appropriate. If there are only minor instances (such as the Denny's case that happens to my family), none of those things are at risk. The most that will happen is a spoiled meal with a temporary rise in blood pressure. And I can use social pressure to arrange negative karma for that, if I want. No need to drag in the blunt instrument of the law. In the meantime we go to one of a hundred other welcoming restaurants, mentally marking down the Denny's as a bad egg.
In your comment , do you do think such discrimination should be illegal, but invoking the law should be done infrequently. Or are you suggesting such a law should not exist and recourse requires a new law when the harm grows to a certain point?
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