Saturday, May 17, 2014

Umm, Religious Freedom is Not Just Freedom From Being Jailed…

According to Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act…

SEC. 2000e-2. [Section 703]

(a) Employer practices

It shall be an unlawful employment practice for an employer -

(1) to fail or refuse to hire or to discharge any individual, or otherwise to discriminate against any individual with respect to his compensation, terms, conditions, or privileges of employment, because of such individual’s race, color, religion, sex, or national origin; or

(2) to limit, segregate, or classify his employees or applicants for employment in any way which would deprive or tend to deprive any individual of employment opportunities or otherwise adversely affect his status as an employee, because of such individual’s race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.

According to the definitions in Title VII

The term “religion” includes all aspects of religious observance and practice, as well as belief, unless an employer demonstrates that he is unable to reasonably accommodate to an employee’s or prospective employee’s religious observance or practice without undue hardship on the conduct of the employer’s business.

What seems to follow from this, as I see it, is that our religious beliefs in faith and morals cannot be used as grounds for limiting our advancement, firing us or refusing to hire us because our religious beliefs require us to hold that marriage can only exist between one man and one woman, for example.

What this tells us is the current argument used by some is invalid. Our religious freedom rights are not merely referring to not being jailed for our beliefs. Neither the government, nor the employer, nor the union organizations can discriminate against us for our beliefs.

According to law, our freedom of religion – which affects all areas of our lives – cannot be used as a basis for ostracism. We're allowed to vote according to our beliefs. We're allowed to donate to political causes according to our beliefs. We're allowed to call for legislation which is in keeping with our beliefs. We can't be fired or demoted or harassed for our beliefs.

Of course, the question of Quis custodiet ipsos custodes (Who polices the police?) comes up here. Yes, according to law, we can't be persecuted for our beliefs. But in practice, we are. The mobs who call for people to be boycotted or fired because of their religious beliefs get away with it. Companies cave in. Judges enact unjust rulings. Politicians enact unjust laws. All in the name of "tolerance."

The only problem is, this behavior sanctified by the label of "tolerance" is remarkably similar to kinds of infamous injustice: Dred Scott, Plessy v. Ferguson, Roe v. Wade etc. in which people could point to Supreme Court rulings and declare that what they did was legal.

This is what happens when the elites of a society, political and cultural, become corrupted and seek to benefit their own views and use positions of authority to hinder or harm those they disagree with. This is the kind of system where we need to stop thinking "Democrat or Republican" or "Liberal or Conservative" and start electing people who think in terms of "is this true or not? Is this just or not?"

Otherwise our claims to freedom in America are a sham.

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