Are you a discriminating individual? Do you discriminate?
The above questions have different meanings, and how you answer will determine if the Left likes you or hates you. To illustrate, let’s take one of God’s greatest gifts to mankind: beer. While not a cicerone (a sommelier for beer drinkers), I am a beer snob. When I drink beer I want to taste it, and can identify quality craft beers like Great Divide’s Yeti versus watered down swill like Pabst Blue Ribbon. In other words, as I understand and can select the qualities of good and bad beer, I am a discriminating beer drinker.
Yes, I’m aware that knowing good beer from bad is not a feat of great importance or worthy of awe. Work with me.
In today’s American culture, if you answer yes to the second question you are a racist or bigot.
Let’s say you own a photography business. A gay couple asks you to capture their “wedding” but because you and your wife are Evangelical Christians who believe the definition of marriage should remain between one man and one woman, you politely turn down their request even though you would be happy to take their pictures for portraits or birthdays. Though the gay couple finds another photographer, which should be where this story ends, they still sue you for discrimination. This isn’t a hypothetical, as Jonathan and Elaine Huguenin of Elaine Photography can tell you. They lost before the New Mexico Supreme Court, and as of earlier this year the US Supreme Court refused to hear their case.
We all discriminate, as in choosing one thing instead of another based on our personal preferences.
Walter E. Williams explains it this way:
Should people have the right to discriminate by race, sex, religion and other attributes? In a free society, I say yes. Let’s look at it. When I was selecting a marriage partner, I systematically discriminated against white women, Asian women and women of other ethnicities that I found less preferable. The Nation of Islam discriminates against white members. The Aryan Brotherhood discriminates against having black members. The Ku Klux Klan discriminates against having Catholic and Jewish members. The NFL discriminates against hiring female quarterbacks. The NAACP National Board of Directors, at least according to the photo on their Web page, has no white members.
You say, Williams, that’s different. It’s not like public transportation, restaurants and hotel service in which Title II of the 1964 Civil Rights Act “prohibits discrimination because of race, color, religion, or national origin in certain places of public accommodation, such as hotels, restaurants, and places of entertainment.” While there are many places that serve the public, it doesn’t change the fact that they are privately owned, and who is admitted, under what conditions, should be up to the owner.
A free society must allow people to choose to do business with whomever they wish. And I’ll say something radical here: That means they should be free to discriminate against anyone for any reason. Remember that sign “We reserve the right to refuse service to anyone”? That’s gone.
What if some dirtbag opens a restaurant called The KKKebobs and refuses to serve black people and Catholics (how he could determine the latter no one knows but let’s say we walked around as if it’s always Ash Wednesday). No problem. I’ll find my kebobs elsewhere, or make my own. How long do you think a jerk like this could keep his restaurant open? He’d run out of money before the first dollar went up on the wall. This is free enterprise working as it should, without detached bureaucrats from thousands of miles away insisting on dictating the results of our free action based on their arbitrary value system.
Cases of gay couples demanding products and services by court decree are increasing. Photographers, florists, bakers, etc. — they’re being told they have to serve a select group or face fines and even lose their businesses. Just a few days ago, all employees at a Kentucky t-shirt company were told they have to to attend diversity training because they refused to print t-shirts for a gay pride parade.
Thomas Sowell defines fascism as follows: You own your business but the government gets to tell you what to do with it. We live and work in a fascist country, my friends. How long do you think we can hold on?