Topic Never tolerate the intolerant
09 Apr 2014 09:20
I have no issue with the new majority getting vocal. But when it denies the opposing still legal view the opportunity to even be spoken for fear of political, societal, or any other form of unfair retribution, I think it's too far. Freedom of Speech prevents us from being locked up. But our employment laws include free speech, you can't be fired for your beliefs or what you say . A man could be a proud member of the Westboro Baptist Church, a 1st Amendment protected group, and not lose his job.
That's not true. If you embarrass your employer and they decide to fire you for it, it's perfectly legal for them to do so, especially in a right-to-work state. And in any contractual situation, there's going to be a clause that covers this ("you're representing us, so if you act or speak to our detriment, this contract is null and void"). First Amendment doesn't give one impunity to act the fool and say whatever they'd like without consequences, both in the workplace and in the public square.
I'm not sure I believe that everyone that opposes gay marriage qualifies as a bigot. Many perfectly normal people, who don't hate anyone, believe that marriage is a religious sacrament between man and woman. I'll post an excerpt from an article I read a few weeks ago on The Week
That's why the premier liberal virtue is toleration and not recognition. Toleration is perfectly compatible with — indeed, it presupposes — a lack of unanimity, or even majority consensus, about ultimate goods. It leaves the diversity of views about ultimate goods intact, forcing consensus on as few issues as possible, so that people belonging to specific regions, classes, ethnicities, and sociocultural and religious groups can build rich, meaningful lives together in freedom.
Recognition, by contrast, requires much more from one's fellow citizens — because the end it seeks is far more demanding. Instead of aiming to "live and let live," as toleration does, recognition strives for psychological acceptance and positive affirmation of one's vision of the good from all of one's fellow citizens, including from those whose vision of the good clashes with it. That makes it a zero-sum game.
I appreciate the spirit of that, but surely you can see that anti-same sex marriage folks are being fairly disingenuous when they plea for "live and let live" co-existence with a group whom they actively wish to deny equal status. That's the bottom line here. Once it becomes legal everywhere, and once there's true equality between hetero and same sex couples, then we can talk about how out of control same sex activists are, if they still are at that point. Until then, it's an issue, and is our era's civil rights struggle. People who don't like seeing the world as they knew and want it disappear will of course be unhappy with strident activism. That's natural.
As for the word 'bigot'. It's a harsh one, I'll grant you. But if one believes that the group on the right deserves one set of benefits, including general equal treatment in society, and the group on the left deserves something less than that, based on nothing beyond one's personal beliefs, what would you prefer to call it? One word or another, it's the same thing: discrimination. These people who have anti-gay rights beliefs based on their religion? That's fine, but one's religious beliefs have no place denying others who don't share them their civil rights. And I'd never say they were bad people on balance, but not being a reprehensible person doesn't change the reality of a discriminatory belief.
The CEO of Chick Fil A, was ostracized for his views on same sex marriage. The Christian CEO of a Christian based company believes marriage should be between a man and woman? Shocking. Should he get the same luxury of being held to the standards of the company he works for? A company that believes in Christianity so much so that they close on Sundays? If he'd come out in support of gay marriage, and CFA had been pressured by the religious right causing him to resign, would we still hear that he should have held the same standards as his company? I doubt it. Shouldn't people have said, CFA was founded by a Christian family so it stands to reason he'd be against same sex marriage so no one should gripe about his stance?
Yes, to all of that. I of course have different beliefs from Mr. Cathey (CEO), but to me, that whole flap was another example of the system working. He had First Amendment rights to express his beliefs, and lucky for him (unlike the Mozilla guy), his beliefs were in line with his company's culture. People protested, as they have a right to do, and others made a special point to support his business as a way of backing up his/his company's beliefs. Nobody was muzzled, and he paid consequences, good and bad, for what he said. No issue, right?