Monday, October 20, 2014

Anti-discrimination policies about control, not equality

There are claims that religion is being used to discriminate against women and LGBT people, but isn’t it the other way around? It seems our increasingly socialist-leaning government is the one using women and LGBT people to discriminate against religious people – namely Christians – to paint them as evil and strip them of their fundamental freedoms.

Wrong and hateful discrimination obviously exists, such as abusing someone for his sexual preference or religious views. But there is also the type we all practice daily in making the discriminating decisions on how to live our lives in ways best suited to our Constitutional right to pursue life, liberty and happiness. It is here that an over-reaching government, in the name of fairness, is putting our liberties at risk.

Cited examples of religious-based discrimination include business owners refusing to provide forced insurance coverage of contraception/abortifacients; pharmacies turning away women seeking to fill birth control prescriptions; and bridal salons, photo studios, and reception halls declining service to same-sex couples planning weddings.

But what some call religious-based discrimination is really just free commerce. Nobody has the right to demand a service be rendered, and under our First Amendment right to freedom of religion, citizens are free to not only worship as they choose, but to publicly live their religious beliefs, including in how they choose to earn a legal living.

As long as citizens are allowed these fundamental freedoms, they are empowered, and in that, government is kept in check. Of course this is despised by a big, godless government with big socialist dreams. Rather than strip citizens of individual liberty in one fell swoop, though, it’s being done incrementally and by dividing people.

First, freedom-loving citizens who don’t wish to be controlled must be vilified. A Christian morally opposed to paying for abortifacients is now simply a hater of women. If your religious beliefs tell you that photographing a same-sex wedding is the same as endorsing a sexual practice you believe is a sin, you are automatically a hater of homosexuals. And it is not enough to be maligned for not wanting to partake in certain commerce; now you will be punitively fined and even forced to do so, essentially making you a slave.

Complicit in this are certain activist women and LGBT people who demand their wants be met specifically by the very people who do not wish to meet those demands. To these activist “victims” it doesn’t matter that contraception is easily accessible overall, or that plenty of entrepreneurs would gladly provide services for same-sex events. These “victims” disregard available options and choose to impose their personal beliefs on religious people –the so-called “haters” – who ironically are the ones accused of imposing their beliefs on the “victims”.

Seeing the opportunity for control, government is increasingly backing the “victims” through anti-discrimination policies – most recently through LGBT policies that  address discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression – and which are being systematically implemented all over the country, including dozens of cities across Michigan (with plans for statewide implementation in the works).

On the surface, protecting against actual wrongful discrimination based on one’s sexual identity sounds fine. But when such policies can be used to undermine one group’s freedoms, while granting special powers to another group, it is no longer about equality, but control. In the attempt to defend certain aspects of human dignity, such policies end up pitting people against each other and create a protected class in which “victims” don’t need to prove their victimhood, but innocent people must prove they are not malicious discriminators. This sets the stage for a whole lot of trouble.

For instance, under these policies, not only are business owners being forced to provide services against their will, but an employer who hires a homosexual and then fires him because the employee stole from the register can be sued for anti-homosexual discrimination. The burden would be on the employer to prove his innocence.

Or, under the “public accommodations” clauses of some ordinances, a typical girl-crazy teenaged boy could say he “identifies as a girl” and enter the girls’ locker room to watch them shower. As many of these ordinances dictate, if a girl complains, she is the one punished for discrimination against a “gender-confused” boy. 

What’s most concerning is that activists oppose any and all religious exemptions currently built-in to some anti-discrimination policies. Imagine how far things would go should such so-called safeguards be removed. It would create a society where religion is forced underground completely and private entrepreneurs, clergy and every day citizens become unwilling servants of government without freedom of speech -- while the “victim” class is held up as justification for this control. Sadly, if those who value liberty don’t push back on these efforts, things will get rapidly worse.

What LGBT activists refuse to accept is that religious beliefs surrounding homosexuality go back thousands of years. LGBT activism is a few decades old. Read "After the Ball", the 1990 book written by homosexual activists that outlines a clear strategy that's been put in place for normalizing homosexuality, while painting Christians as bigots and homophobes. If LGBT's truly want acceptance, forcing people to forfeit their deeply held religious beliefs under threat of punishment is not the way to do it.

Socialism is all about dividing and controlling people, and government on every level is doing a spectacular job of this, as are the activists. Unfortunately, it is under the cloak of equality that serious progress is being made by those who want to replace the principles of individualism, Christianity, and the Constitution, with tyranny, slavery and life without God. 

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  1. perfect example of this is Houston's lesbian mayor demanding that clergy turn over their sermons so she can check to make sure they don't refer to homosexuality as a sin. She actually sent them subpoenas (I think she backed down now) but the point is, a govt official thought they had the right to take aways people's rights to religion and speech because of her political beliefs. Very scary. Thanks for this Julie - but brace yourself, you'll probably be crucified by the real haters - those who hate the fact that people are allowed to believe what they want.

  2. According to gay radicals, I am supposed to ignore God. Well, they say I'm allowed to worship Him on weekends at a church or in my own home, but that I have to pretend His rules don't apply anywhere else in my life. I'd like to ask them, what makes them think their beliefs are more important than mine? Yes they will say my not wanting to take pictures of their wedding violates their beliefs. But doing so violates mine. So what is more important about their beliefs? They are not interested in equality. They want control just like the article says. It is just not right.

  3. Thank you for your column.
    I was surprised to see that a newspaper is printing more than one viewpoint on this topic.
    t's rare to see God's opinion on issues taken seriously.