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Can I get an “AMEN!” for

October 30, 2007

for D. Parvaz of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer for his op-ed piece Religion doesn’t confer right to discriminate?

Here’s the money quote:

Two bills — HR 3685 and 3686, which should be one bill — seek to give gays, lesbians, bisexuals and the transgendered protection from discrimination in the workplace. Naturally, President Bush indicated that he’ll veto the bills (assuming they go that far), a move groups such as Conservative Women for America applaud. A statement from the administration (on 3685) indicates that his main issue with the bill is that it “is inconsistent with the right to the free exercise of religion as codified by Congress in the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.” So, being a Christian means you get to deny people jobs based on what goes on in their pants when they’re not at work?…

Somehow, “Sorry. A person’s right to discriminate against you based on religious beliefs supersedes your most basic civil rights” doesn’t cut it.

(emphasis is mine)

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10 Comments leave one →
  1. klady permalink
    October 30, 2007 11:09 am

    Amen. And while we’re at it, maybe we should remind Rowan that it is pretty empty to say that religion does not justify violence if one says, at the same time, that civil governments, such as that in the U.K., should be able to protect religionists who choose to discriminate against people based on sexual orientation in public accommodations, services, and the workplace. How can one seriously campaign against violence and, at the same time tell people that their religion permits them to not only stay as far away as possible from people of different sexual orientations but to enshrine that permission as a legal right called freedom of religion? If it’s o.k. to recognize a legal difference in status for work, services, accommodations, etc., some may well conclude that’s it’s somehow a lesser crime to attack such persons, verbally and/or physically.

  2. episcopalifem permalink*
    October 30, 2007 11:15 am

    HERE, HERE! I agree wholeheartedly, Klady.

  3. October 30, 2007 12:05 pm

    I wish the sole purpose of most religions that I know of weren’t the determination of who is good and who is bad, who should be included and who should be excluded, who has all rights and privileges and who isn’t worthy of everyone else’s benefits. It’s enough to make an intelligent person an atheist. No wonder many people have turned their back on church.

    Thank goodness some Episcopalians are fighting to change this perception and include all humans as Jesus taught. Prayers ascending for those who simply don’t understand. Yet.

    Perhaps religions which “force” their adherents to discriminate should be discriminated against? Like, no Catholic pharmacists? grin.

  4. October 30, 2007 12:14 pm

    Pseudo,

    It ain’t just the Catliks. In Texas there’s been more than one Baptist pharmacist who refused to fill Rx for contraceptives (they seem to have no problem with Viagra).

    It’s why I refuse to shop at CVS drugstores. These gits supported their pharmacist’s “rights” to refuse a doctor-written Rx because of religious objections…

  5. episcopalifem permalink*
    October 30, 2007 12:30 pm

    I agree with Pseudo…if your religious beliefs would interfere with doing the job, choose something else to be.

  6. susan s. permalink
    October 30, 2007 3:01 pm

    Oh, but Eileen, I really believe that some of them do become pharmacists so they can save babies or whatever from the evils of birth control and abortion. My sister will only go to pharmacists who refuse to fill those prescriptions. Of course my sister is an idiot! 😉

  7. episcopalifem permalink*
    October 30, 2007 3:08 pm

    Susan, I know what you mean, and I believe the same thing.

    It just shouldn’t be allowed.

    Or they shouldn’t be allowed to collect insurance or something along those lines.

  8. rick allen permalink
    October 30, 2007 3:41 pm

    “if your religious beliefs would interfere with doing the job, choose something else to be.”

    So….no one with moral objections to abortion may become an obstetrician. No one may become a publisher unless willing to print (perfectly legal) material that one finds abhorrent.

    This puts me in mind of the Emperor Julian (affectionately known as “the Apostate”) who, rather than persecuting Christians like his predecessors, simply arranged to have them removed from all positions of influence, because of his tender concerns for their conscience.

    This is not a good era for civil liberties. The Bushies isolate and prosecute protestors, corrupt the press, make a joke of habeas corpus, and reintroduce torture into the mainstream of American “defense tactics.”

    The left is certainly less guilty of these enormities, but there seems still a willingness of ride roughshod over the American respect for individual conscience, treating the constituional guarantee of freedom of religion as if it were some squalid special interest. It is certainly an attitude in accord with the times. I would hesitate to call it “liberal.”

  9. episcopalifem permalink*
    October 30, 2007 4:37 pm

    Publishing and in some respects, physicians are independent operators.

    Pharmacists, at least in my part of the country, are not. They work for retailers, who accept insurance funds.

    If you want to be a pharmacist who doesn’t fill legal prescriptions, open your own pharmacy, and be sure to plaster it all over the place, so your clientele knows.

    There is nothing wrong with operating under the guise of your individual conscience, but that can have a consequence.

    The point of this whole piece, pharmacist tomfoolery aside, is that the right to religious freedom is not a bigger right, than one’s right to civil liberties or the right to have a legal prescription filled without a hassle.

    The left isn’t going to “run roughshod” over anything Rick, and you know.

  10. October 31, 2007 12:00 am

    It’s a great piece indeed.

    PS – D. is a woman, btw. 😉

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