MAULE.Prof.Law at LAW.VILL.EDU
Wed Aug 12 14:31:36 PDT 1998
"Michael P. Schutt" <michsch at REGENT.EDU> asks
> Why (in non-state-action, non-common-carrier-type situations), shouldn't we
> have the freedom to be bigots, jerks, racists, and idiots in our private
> lives and businesses?
> The harm is greater when we restrict an atheist from advertising "Christians
> need not apply" than if we make him hire based on state dictates. Same with
> "liberals need not apply" or even "Whites need not apply." If we don't like
> our employer's politics, religion, or skin color, we can change jobs or live
> with it. If he doesn't like ours, he shouldn't have to hire us. If we
> don't like the butcher telling Jews not to apply for job openings, we should
> buy our meat elsewhere and drive the jerk out of town. If he flourishes, we
> should move out of that community. That's freedom, right?
> I understand the moral outrage; the duty, however, to love one's neighbor is
> a duty that should remain unenforceable by the state. State efforts to make
> people "be nice" are counterproductive.
1, One purpose of the existence of a state or government is to
prevent war and promote peace. Behavior that permits the
balkanization of religious groups (or racial, or ethnic, etc) most
likely leads to war. Perhaps the proposal is intended to take it that
far.... if the worshippers of whomever get enough guns, so to speak,
then they can drive out the other denominations, let them starve,
hey, kill them even (there's plenty of role models in history from
whom lessons in this can be learned), and take over. Oh, who cares
about the First Amendment? While we're all busy excluding the
destined-to-hell devil worshipping evil anatagonists of our religion,
we had best hope that Lucifer doesn't provide them with better
weaponry. What keeps this from happening is not only the First
Amendment (as it really in a way reflects an underlying human
impulse) but also the underlying human impulse for survival that
teaches tolerance is better than adversity. Oh, every once in a while
someone comes along that really believes he (yes, it almost always is
a he) has the best and enough weapons to tell the unwanted to get
out. Freedom? Hah.
2. Denying a Christian a job for which religious beliefs is not
relevant (welding is welding and no denomination does it better than
another) violates the Christian's right to be a Christian. The
atheist or Hindu or whomever who wants to deny the Christian the job
does not need to do so in order to practice their religion, UNLESS IT
IS PART OF THEIR RELIGIOUS BELIEF that Christians must be denied jobs
and driven out of the town/county/state/nation/planet. If the First
Amendment does indeed protect the right of religion X to engage in a
Crusade, we're back to who has the best weapons and who has, to
paraphrase Bob Dylan, God on his side. (After all, if Hitler had
manged to conquer the world, I'm sure he would have heralded it as a
sign of God's approval even if he didn't believe that, as it would
make for excellent PR).
3. Government cannot (and I don't think government tries to) make
people nice. One cannot compel love or other feelings and emotions.
Governments can try to compel behavior. The person compelled to hire
the Wiccan doesn't have to smile while doing so.
Professor of Law
Villanova University School of Law
Villanova, PA 19085
maule at law.vill.edu
(610) 519 - 7135
"government big enough to give you everything you want is also big
enough to take away from you everything you have"
-- George Herbert Walker Bush
More information about the Religionlaw