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Author Topic: Arizona Anti-Gay Law  (Read 1785 times)

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Offline Titania 91Topic starter

Arizona Anti-Gay Law
« on: February 22, 2014, 06:44:32 AM »
So a law has passed in Arizona allowing shops and restaurants to not serve a person if their lifestyle is against their religion. This is pure and utter discrimination. Religion should not be used to discriminate. You are allowed your rights as long as they do not infringe the rights of others. Just because someone is gay or lesbian or transsexual does not give you the right to say you won't serve them. This is just the same as telling someone who is Black or Hispanic or Chinese that they can't eat in the main part of a restaurant and have to pick it up from the back of the kitchen. It is a modern Jim Crowe and needs to be repealed. Using religion as a discriminatory measure is wrong! It shows that America hasn't changed at all and I hope this law gets repealed. It's like we have stepped back into the 1930s or 1960s. Am I alone in finding this law flawed and wrong? Is this not a violation of Civil Rights?

Offline Valthazar

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Re: Arizona Anti-Gay Law
« Reply #1 on: February 22, 2014, 07:26:50 AM »
It hasn't passed into law yet, it is still a bill that is waiting for the governor's signature.  She vetoed a similar bill last year, but she may very well sign it this year, who knows.

It's just another example of how American conservatism has been hijacked by the religious right lobby.

Offline Fabjuth

Re: Arizona Anti-Gay Law
« Reply #2 on: February 22, 2014, 07:40:47 AM »
When I first heard this news yesterday, I thought the person was joking. Turns out they weren't.

I'm with Valthazar, religious beliefs play too much a part in USA politics. As does fear of difference and outright descrimination.

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Re: Arizona Anti-Gay Law
« Reply #3 on: February 22, 2014, 07:47:03 AM »
       Allowing pretty much anyone to refuse service on religious grounds, I think.  I can't imagine it would survive the federal courts. 

        A denial of service case in New Mexico that the proponents liked to cite as an example of why they need this, has not found the state courts over there sympathetic.  I gather it is still waiting for the US Supreme Court to decide whether they wish to review. 

Offline vtboy

Re: Arizona Anti-Gay Law
« Reply #4 on: February 22, 2014, 08:24:17 AM »
The case presents an interesting legal issue. The 1964 Civil Rights Act does not ban discrimination in public accommodations on the basis of sexual orientation. However, it does prohibit such discrimination on the basis of religion. In permitting businesses which serve the public to deny service to those whose "lifestyles" offend the owners' religious beliefs, it seems to me the Arizona law must be viewed as endorsing just the sort of religious discrimination which is prohibited under federal law. Of course, it is far from clear that the bronze age thinkers on our Supreme Court would see the matter that way were a case testing the Arizona law to reach them.   

Offline Titania 91Topic starter

Re: Arizona Anti-Gay Law
« Reply #5 on: February 22, 2014, 08:30:14 AM »
The fact that it passed through Arizona Congress is disturbing isn't it? Have we taken such a large step back? And I completely agree Valthazar. It's become a Relgious Freedom vs Gay Rights issue, and so political where politics needn't be involved. Just like you can't yell Fire in a crowded movie theater, you can't deny someone service because of their lifestyle. It could also be twisted into religious persecution. Because someone is Muslim, sorry, we are Christian and my views don't match yours so you arent getting anything from us. This is the US. We are a melting pot, a mixture of religions, ethnicities, and cultures. The idea that coke can't run a commercial with America the Beautiful sung in different languages without right wingers complaining over it really gets my goat. It is not Religious freedom, it is discrimination.  And while the a bible does state a man should not lay with another man it also states in James 2:8-11

"8 If you really keep the royal law found in Scripture, “Love your neighbor as yourself,”[a] you are doing right. 9 But if you show favoritism, you sin and are convicted by the law as lawbreakers. 10 For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it. 11 For he who said, “You shall not commit adultery,” also said, “You shall not murder.”[c] If you do not commit adultery but do commit murder, you have become a lawbreaker."

So if you are a Christian, to pick and choose what rules to follow, by that theology is a sin in the eyes of God. The Bible says you shouldn't eat pork, you shouldn't sleep with a woman for the week before her menstrual cycle, the week of and the week after, you shouldn't lie or kill or be envious of what others have. Dont make a promise you dont intend to keep or seeking revenge or holding a grudge. Things people do all the time as Christians. I myself am certainly guilty of holding a grudge and I love pork. So I am a sinner and no better than anyone else and their sin.

 As a Christian, I find the law disturbing. I was taught to love everyone and not judge but this law seems to be making shopkeepers judge and jury to those they do not agree with. If the Governor does sign this bill, she is doing an injustice to gays, lesbians, Muslims, Jews, Christians and all other people of a religion I didn't name. It is a law that just makes me think America is ony for the Americans born white, male and English speaking. And it's an America I cannot stomach. Things certainly need to change.
« Last Edit: February 22, 2014, 08:32:56 AM by Titania 91 »

Offline vtboy

Re: Arizona Anti-Gay Law
« Reply #6 on: February 22, 2014, 10:45:49 AM »
A pox upon me for neglecting in my previous post to mention the obvious First Amendment violation. The Arizona bill would allow a bible thumping merchant to reject the custom of LGBTs out of claimed religious scruple, but would deny the privilege to his atheist competitor, even if the latter were just as repulsed by the lifestyle. I don't see how this may be viewed as anything but an affront to the Establishment Clause.
« Last Edit: February 22, 2014, 10:46:50 AM by vtboy »

Offline Retribution

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Re: Arizona Anti-Gay Law
« Reply #7 on: February 22, 2014, 11:14:41 AM »
What -really- gets me about all of these idiotic anti gay laws is how much national time and energy has been and is being wasted. Take the whole anti same sex marriage debate, there has been untold time, capital, and just plain energy wasted on the issue. What does it matter what consenting adults do in their own home? It does not affect anyone else. Don't we have better things to worry about? Dear god pass a nationwide acceptance of same sex unions and move on. But no, we have stupidity like this illustrated regularly.

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Re: Arizona Anti-Gay Law
« Reply #8 on: February 22, 2014, 12:15:58 PM »
A pox upon me for neglecting in my previous post to mention the obvious First Amendment violation. The Arizona bill would allow a bible thumping merchant to reject the custom of LGBTs out of claimed religious scruple, but would deny the privilege to his atheist competitor, even if the latter were just as repulsed by the lifestyle. I don't see how this may be viewed as anything but an affront to the Establishment Clause.

          I don't think this would necessarily follow.  Particularly if you look at the text of the Arizona bill...  Assuming this is still the active version or that this wording has not been changed in the active version, it reads:

Quote
2.  "Exercise of religion" means the PRACTICE OR OBSERVANCE OF RELIGION, INCLUDING THE ability to act or refusal to act in a manner substantially motivated by a religious belief, whether or not the exercise is compulsory or central to a larger system of religious belief.
Seems to me they have actually included potential atheist claims pretty well in their effort to paint a broad definition.


          However, the whole thing is running into trouble where it basically argues that religious freedom somehow supercedes laws that are expressly intended to apply to everyone, without regard for religion.  They're trying to make freedom of religion more important than any other rules about equality, an exception that overrides everything else -- even rules that were supposed to be beyond exception. 

(attempted to replace the strikethroughs that were in the original, but they did not cut and paste)
Quote
41-1493.01.  Free exercise of religion protected; definition
A.  Free exercise of religion is a fundamental right that applies in this state even if laws, rules or other government actions are facially neutral.
B.  Except as provided in subsection C, government OF THIS SECTION, STATE ACTION shall not substantially burden a person's exercise of religion even if the burden results from a rule of general applicability.
C.  Government STATE ACTION may substantially burden a person's exercise of religion only if it THE GOVERNMENT OR NONGOVERNMENTAL PERSON SEEKING THE ENFORCEMENT OF STATE ACTION demonstrates that application of the burden to the person PERSON'S EXERCISE OF RELIGION IN THIS PARTICULAR INSTANCE is both:
1.  In furtherance of a compelling governmental interest.
2.  The least restrictive means of furthering that compelling governmental interest.
D.  A person whose religious exercise is burdened in violation of this section may assert that violation as a claim or defense in a judicial proceeding, and obtain appropriate relief against a government REGARDLESS OF WHETHER THE GOVERNMENT IS A PARTY TO THE PROCEEDING.

Although I have heard a few groans that the US Supreme might yet pull some form of Citizens' United silliness over here...  This is an approach where the New Mexico system at least has pretty much said (in regard to that very case they loved to mention in Arizona as supposed impetus for this):  Ya know, you just can't do that. 
« Last Edit: February 22, 2014, 12:31:02 PM by kylie »

Offline kylie

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Re: Arizona Anti-Gay Law
« Reply #9 on: February 22, 2014, 12:28:59 PM »
What -really- gets me about all of these idiotic anti gay laws is how much national time and energy has been and is being wasted. Take the whole anti same sex marriage debate, there has been untold time, capital, and just plain energy wasted on the issue. What does it matter what consenting adults do in their own home? It does not affect anyone else. Don't we have better things to worry about? Dear god pass a nationwide acceptance of same sex unions and move on. But no, we have stupidity like this illustrated regularly.

        Well, who you get to have as legal guarantor or next of kin, and whether people can flat out deny you services in public due to your orientation, and whether you get tax breaks, and hundreds of other legal questions do not always (or in this case hardly ever!) play out in your own home.  Though I grant you the resistance to public equality does lead to a huge toss of resources. 

         Now, if you recognize that in order to achieve equality, all levels of government (including interstate relationships) and private institutions would have to treat civil unions just as they treat marriage -- which they very often do not -- we'd be on the same page.  And people might still be resisting it under much the same expensive, ugly, very public arguments.


Offline Retribution

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Re: Arizona Anti-Gay Law
« Reply #10 on: February 22, 2014, 12:45:04 PM »
        Well, who you get to have as legal guarantor or next of kin, and whether people can flat out deny you services in public due to your orientation, and whether you get tax breaks, and hundreds of other legal questions do not always (or in this case hardly ever!) play out in your own home.  Though I grant you the resistance to public equality does lead to a huge toss of resources. 

         Now, if you recognize that in order to achieve equality, all levels of government (including interstate relationships) and private institutions would have to treat civil unions just as they treat marriage -- which they very often do not -- we'd be on the same page.  And people might still be resisting it under much the same expensive, ugly, very public arguments.

Uh you are way over analyzing my post. What I am saying is I support the whole concept of same sex unions and do not think we should waste so much national energy arguing about it.

Offline Mathim

Re: Arizona Anti-Gay Law
« Reply #11 on: February 22, 2014, 12:48:48 PM »
Really hard not to bash religion when stuff like this happens but I think it was pointed out by Titania that the whole matter is naught but thinly veiled hypocrisy. When a set of beliefs is just plain and simply incapable of being followed to the letter, you end up with the vast majority who are determined to uphold it as best they can projecting on people who will be doing the one thing they know they themselves at least won't be guilty of (in most cases; lest we forget ol' Ted Haggard) and scapegoating the living crap out of them.

I mean, it boils down essentially to this sentiment from where I'm standing: "Well, gee, I can't possibly stop coveting without enduring intense mental conditioning that would drive me even batshittier than usual (among other sins that are at least more physically plausible to avoid), so I'll start attacking someone who's committing a sin that I myself won't be committing (i.e. sodomy and anything else they want to ascribe to people they know next to nothing about but claim to be authorities on), therefore that makes up for my inability to stop sinning. If I do it loud enough, God is sure to hear it!"

So to go as far as pushing this wacked out agenda on others based on that flawed assumption (based on an already enormously flawed assumption) is not permissible. Where the hell is the separation of church and state anymore? There's a real simple solution that human fallibility will prevent from ever happening.
« Last Edit: February 22, 2014, 12:50:33 PM by Mathim »

Offline kylie

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Re: Arizona Anti-Gay Law
« Reply #12 on: February 22, 2014, 01:22:57 PM »
Uh you are way over analyzing my post. What I am saying is I support the whole concept of same sex unions and do not think we should waste so much national energy arguing about it.

         When they argued for this law, the Republicans in AZ kept bringing up a case where a photographer had been sued for refusing to photograph a lesbian commitment ceremony in 2006 -- long before New Mexico had allowed same-sex marriage (I believe they're just getting to that actually?).

          So it simply doesn't resolve the situation to shift the wording from marriage to unions (nor from public to private).  I don't see how that part of what you said above helps.  Sure, if everyone accepted either term as actually all being equal then it would. 

Offline Missy

Re: Arizona Anti-Gay Law
« Reply #13 on: February 22, 2014, 02:47:55 PM »
"I like your Christ, but I do not like your Christians, they're not much like your Christ" -- Mahatma Ghandi

Honestly I just feel like I'm getting so much bullshit from people anytime I hear about this. I guess because it is bullshit. the sheer stupidity of it is just infuriating.

http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Latest-News-Wires/2014/0220/Arizona-religious-freedom-bill-angers-gay-rights-supporters

Quote
Republicans stressed that the bill is about protecting religious freedom and not discrimination. They frequently cited the case of a New Mexico photographer who was sued after refusing to take wedding pictures of a gay couple and said Arizona needs a law to protect people in the state from heavy-handed actions by courts and law enforcement.

You know because it bother's white people to take photos of black peoples weddings. And of non-christian weddings, of people who aren't Americans, when the people don't speak english, and when there's not a straight white cismale christian religious fanatic at the center of attention.  I mean seriously the people who take photos at these sorts of weddings suffer for years afterward from these traumatic experiences.

Quote
"We see a growing hostility toward religion," said Josh Kredit, legal counsel for the group.

Growing? Yeah I know, for like oh approximately 1500 - 2000 years? Now I honestly do not think it was the original intention of the Christian faith and I think there have always been more tolerant parties within the faith, though up until recently I truthfully believe tolerant elements were among the minority and often found themselves at the receiving end of their peers persecution as well. But bluntly I can quote example after example of Christian persecution and hostility towards other religions. I mean you start with the Pagans whose beliefs have been demonized by the Catholic church for almost as long as Catholicism has existed. Next we have the crusades and the Inquisitors. Witch Trials, during the dark ages in Europe and in the Americas in Salem. The dealings of the Spanish and Dutch with the Japanese. And I'm sure there are more knowledgeable people who can quote more examples throughout history. If you don't feel like people like you, maybe you should try stop being a bully.

Offline Valthazar

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Re: Arizona Anti-Gay Law
« Reply #14 on: February 22, 2014, 04:29:22 PM »
Like Retribution said, it is hilarious that Republicans and Democrats alike waste so much time campaigning on and polarizing us on these social issues.

Focusing on these easy-to-understand social issues is a great way for people who have no clue about politics to figure out which party to vote for, and you better believe that's why politicians on both the Left and Right are focusing so much on this stuff.  The uneducated portion of Bible thumpers will then vote for Republicans, and the uneducated portion of young adult urban dwellers will vote Democrat.

Offline Ephiral

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Re: Arizona Anti-Gay Law
« Reply #15 on: February 22, 2014, 04:45:06 PM »
          I don't think this would necessarily follow.  Particularly if you look at the text of the Arizona bill...  Assuming this is still the active version or that this wording has not been changed in the active version, it reads:
Quote
2.  "Exercise of religion" means the PRACTICE OR OBSERVANCE OF RELIGION, INCLUDING THE ability to act or refusal to act in a manner substantially motivated by a religious belief, whether or not the exercise is compulsory or central to a larger system of religious belief.
Seems to me they have actually included potential atheist claims pretty well in their effort to paint a broad definition.
Pretty sure anybody who knows me at all knows my position on this bill, and I'm not seeing a lot of counterpoint, so I'll just speak to this. That excerpt does not appear to address atheists in any way - you'd be hard-pressed to find one who claims to act "in a manner substantially motivated by a religious belief", given that the defining characteristic is a lack of religious belief.

Offline Retribution

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Re: Arizona Anti-Gay Law
« Reply #16 on: February 22, 2014, 07:08:32 PM »
         When they argued for this law, the Republicans in AZ kept bringing up a case where a photographer had been sued for refusing to photograph a lesbian commitment ceremony in 2006 -- long before New Mexico had allowed same-sex marriage (I believe they're just getting to that actually?).

          So it simply doesn't resolve the situation to shift the wording from marriage to unions (nor from public to private).  I don't see how that part of what you said above helps.  Sure, if everyone accepted either term as actually all being equal then it would.

Alright please tell me what part of what I said does not agree with any of this? I used same sex for lack of a better description. Someone can marry their freaking dog or horse or what have you for all I care. Because that is just it I do not care and it is none of my dam business. If you want to marry a horse and cover it on your insurance like a spouse hell go for it.

This does illustrate how much energy we waste on the topic though since you seem to be trying really hard to argue with me when I am agreeing with you.

Offline Valthazar

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Re: Arizona Anti-Gay Law
« Reply #17 on: February 22, 2014, 08:02:38 PM »
Someone can marry their freaking dog or horse or what have you for all I care. Because that is just it I do not care and it is none of my dam business. If you want to marry a horse and cover it on your insurance like a spouse hell go for it.

I definitely agree with what you are saying.  It's very libertarian in nature, and ironically very similar to what many liberals tend to advocate for (ending discrimination, freedom of religion, sexuality, etc.) 

This is what has always confused me about today's movement Conservatism - they are trying to polarize all of us, when our similarities actually far outweigh our differences.  If you talk to most conservative leaning people, including myself, you'll probably hear similar frustrations.

Offline Missy

Re: Arizona Anti-Gay Law
« Reply #18 on: February 22, 2014, 08:46:39 PM »
Like Retribution said, it is hilarious that Republicans and Democrats alike waste so much time campaigning on and polarizing us on these social issues.

Focusing on these easy-to-understand social issues is a great way for people who have no clue about politics to figure out which party to vote for, and you better believe that's why politicians on both the Left and Right are focusing so much on this stuff.  The uneducated portion of Bible thumpers will then vote for Republicans, and the uneducated portion of young adult urban dwellers will vote Democrat.

I think I can agree with you here, so much time is wasted on tiny things which don't actually make a strong difference in the greater scheme of things. Like how much interference the law should impose on the lives of people who are different (that's what it all boils down too, sticking your nose into someone else's business because they're different from you and you're bigoted about that).

Just yesterday I read an article where Obama finally decided to encourage congress to raise the minimum wage. I'm just like "how long has this guy been in office and he's just now deciding to recognize and act on that problem!?" Now that he's decided his healthcare pet project is doing okay so he can take more money from hard working Americans and put it into the pockets of people who already have a metric shit ton of money. Now after how long that he's been in office and that the price of living has been rising for how long while wages stay the same for how long, now he's decided it might just be a good idea to think about that???

Honestly politicians are all disappointing, they're all in the pockets of the corporations who have bought their souls. Nothing's ever going to change because it's the corporation which front the money for their campaigns to get reelected. Hell the majority can't even afford to pay a politician to make policies to benefit them, we live in an oligarchy. And the 20% with 89% of the wealth have nothign to worry about from economic fallout.

Offline Retribution

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Re: Arizona Anti-Gay Law
« Reply #19 on: February 22, 2014, 08:50:19 PM »
I definitely agree with what you are saying.  It's very libertarian in nature, and ironically very similar to what many liberals tend to advocate for (ending discrimination, freedom of religion, sexuality, etc.) 

This is what has always confused me about today's movement Conservatism - they are trying to polarize all of us, when our similarities actually far outweigh our differences.  If you talk to most conservative leaning people, including myself, you'll probably hear similar frustrations.

I think it is extremists on both sides that make a lot of our problems Val. Like you pointed out early both political parties need to draw a hard line and show how they are different. So extremists on both sides flourish, toss in a dose of modern media and there you go. And by and large the public, this includes me because I know I have been guilty, falls into this trap and we get all riled up about things that there really is not anything to get riled up over. In short we are closer than we think. I have touched on this in other threads on this particular forum and have ironically often been greeted with an attitude of "it's all the other side's fault."

Online Thesunmaid

Re: Arizona Anti-Gay Law
« Reply #20 on: February 22, 2014, 09:28:32 PM »
Can I start my own religion where I don't have to serve people who wear green shoes? Or perhaps I should also make a rule every second Tuesday we should not serve anyone with children...because fuck knows that makes about as much sense as not serving gay people. I have no idea how it is still OK for people to discriminate against someone because of who they love. Seriously..50 years from now we will look back on people who discriminate against gay people like we do now with racists. Shake our heads and assume they are a product of ignorance and their upbringing saying "There there grandma...yes the evil gays are trying to destroy the world with rainbows and wanting to have the right to marry."Insert the smile and nod humoring them.

These sorts of things really make my brain hurt and one of the big reasons why I am an atheist.

Offline Valthazar

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Re: Arizona Anti-Gay Law
« Reply #21 on: February 22, 2014, 10:26:38 PM »
Great point Ret.

thesunmaid, the fact is that much of these hypocrisies don't actually have much to do with Christianity itself (as has been said by Titania).  It is politicians capitalizing on vulnerabilities within the doctrine of Christianity to turn it into a political point.  For example, gluttony is a sin, and given a different transpiring of political events, politically-motivated Christians could have turned fitness into a political agenda item of Christians, had movement Conservatism branded itself in this manner.  It should come as no surprise then that much of the material preached in churches across this country has a heavy political slant to it.

The ideal solution is to identify this corrupting political influence in religion, and stem that right from the start.  Because I genuinely believe that Christians are decent, accepting people, who simply have been conditioned to over-emphasize certain aspects of their doctrine to the point of being hypocritical to their core beliefs.

The problem with turning this into a discrimination issue (reactively responding) as opposed to stemming the root problem, is that it opens up a whole new can of worms.  For example, should a man be permitted membership to a female-only gym?  Silly questions that now have merit, since we are reactively trying to enforce common sense morality.

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Re: Arizona Anti-Gay Law
« Reply #22 on: February 23, 2014, 02:44:34 AM »
That excerpt does not appear to address atheists in any way - you'd be hard-pressed to find one who claims to act "in a manner substantially motivated by a religious belief", given that the defining characteristic is a lack of religious belief.

         The way I understood it, it says people are also protected if they refuse to act in a manner motivated by some religious belief.  And they say the question is not about what "larger systems" of religion require either.  So it seems to me, an atheist could refuse a job with the defense that 'Oh, that sort of activity would be predicated on certain Christian [or insert whatever religion's] values and I don't wish to be seen as supporting that.'

          Actually, I looked into it because I read at some point that some legal scholars have made statements saying that could be a reasonable extension.  Though I don't think I have seen just how they reasoned it yet.  I'll drop in a link if I can find one to the reference again. 
 
         Granted, the bill doesn't use the word "atheist" if that is what you mean by "address."  But then they don't use the words Baptist, Protestant, or even Christian either.  As far as I recall.

         Still hate the bill.  If that isn't obvious enough.  It's making a broader claim than even the New Mexico case has tried to make (They at least claim to be talking about 'more artistic' types of business and not just anything under the sun.  Though I could imagine most anyone under the sun claiming to be artistic as a result, if that were allowed to fly.)
 
« Last Edit: February 23, 2014, 02:46:36 AM by kylie »

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Re: Arizona Anti-Gay Law
« Reply #23 on: February 23, 2014, 03:17:22 AM »
         I wonder if this falls under refusing to service people based on the prospective client's religious position, actually.   8-)

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Re: Arizona Anti-Gay Law
« Reply #24 on: February 23, 2014, 04:21:47 AM »
Quote from: Val
The problem with turning this into a discrimination issue (reactively responding) as opposed to stemming the root problem, is that it opens up a whole new can of worms.  For example, should a man be permitted membership to a female-only gym?  Silly questions that now have merit, since we are reactively trying to enforce common sense morality.
        Somehow it seems like there's usually another can of worms anyway...  But I don't think that means it's better to simply educate and hope the problem fades away in a generation or few.  It's also arguable that things only get better because of some contribution from both approaches.  Education and discussion are great yes, but this is more like the Jim Crow laws than any passive misunderstanding.  A state says hey look, here's a positive excuse to circumvent protections for a group that is being discriminated against.  A whole slew of (mostly Southern) state attorneys (plus Michigan and Montana) have chimed in with an amicus brief saying, among other expressed motivations, that they also want the Supreme Court to take this up so that they will have guidance as they likewise craft 'protections' that set religious freedom as an exclusion zone against anti-discrimination laws.  If people were not reactively trying to undermine rights for a group that are being approved in many parts of the country, then no one would have to deal with it.  But they are, and they're not backing down without a ruling or a fight, not least a bureaucratic one (then there are the bodies tied to fences and such).

        As to your female-only gym example, three points: 

        First, denial of service cases rely on whether businesses are designated as public marketplace establishments.  I was just reading the Willock brief to the Supreme Court (the lesbian party that sued in the New Mexico case).  They say that the photography company is not classified as a freelancer under law but rather as one that has made its services available to the general public.  Personally, I don't know all the technicalities of that -- whether it has to do with zoning or contract rules or just how it's determined.  But I can imagine that perhaps some gymnasiums could let's say 'incorporate' or whatever the term is, such that they are not (or maybe are no longer) 'publicly available' for business.  (There must be proper legal terms for all this but I don't know them.)  Then they pick their clients, but they only get to pick from a pool of clients they have designated beforehand.  (What happens if a new kind of group or situation they don't like appears among what was formerly accepted as part of their client base?  Then I imagine, they could still be facing a dilemma.  But anyway.)  Of course, if just anyone can easily make a freelance or members-only sort of business with a big facility and everything, anywhere, then there could be a wide-scale "gated community" sort of problem with this...

           Second, the New Mexico case is specifically concerned with discrimination against a protected minority.  It's easier to argue that women deserve to be a protected minority under the law than men.  The historical and institutional limitations placed on women's status are pretty well recognized -- to the extent that we have anti-discrimination laws protecting things like bio-sex (and along rather similar reasoning, we have them now for orientation and still more recently, getting a bit more into gender expression).  I'm guessing there are more precedents established with this that women may need women-only facilities to be taken seriously.  But I don't have a lot of background reading cases about this, I must admit.

            Third, there is room (good or bad) for development of a community around a business site that supports that community, which may have ramifications for who actually wants to frequent a given place more often...  Again in the Willock brief:  They note that the New Mexico anti-discrimination law allows the business to advertise using whatever examples it wants and to say whatever it wants outside of a particular transaction relationship about its beliefs.   The business can post what it thinks of gay marriage on its website even, at least under the New Mexico law.  They can tell everyone (including prospective customers beforehand) what they're for, as long as -- as a business that has said they serve the public from a publicly available book of service agreements, not a private contractor -- they offer the actual services to everyone equally.  When businesses do this, some groups will tend to develop around them more than others.  Other clients may be more or less interested in newcomers with a different set of beliefs; I'm not sure how comfy, or even how well served a small number of men would feel for the first month in that gym you mention anyway (all else aside)...  But if someone really wants to have the service, that's that.
« Last Edit: February 23, 2014, 04:39:03 AM by kylie »