So the internet is all a flutter with the news of Arizona’s right to refuse service law being vetoed. Oklahoma has one in the works to which is being re-worked in light of the activities in Arizona.
In the interest of full disclosure, I am just going to go ahead and tell you that I’ve not read either bill. All I have seen is the reaction to it on both sides. And really, I sympathize with those celebrating the veto. I have no tolerance for bigotry*. Sympathize, but don’t agree.
For the record, I’m using the Merriam-Webster definition of bigot
: a person who is obstinately or intolerantly devoted to his or her own opinions and prejudices; especially: one who regards or treats the members of a group (as a racial or ethnic group) with hatred and intolerance
So now the Christian screen-printer has to print up flyers for the gay rally. Their money is good, right? It’s a business offering a service for hire to the public. Don’t hate. Don’t discriminate. So what if the screen-printers happen to be black? Do they also have to print flyers for next week’s Klan rally? Their money spends the same, right? They are participating in a completely legal activity even if you do find them reprehensible.
The Christian bakery has to make big gay wedding cakes. And they’ll be fabulous, I’m sure. Going to have the Halal deli cater the reception? Huh. That’s funny. That wasn’t the conflict that sent anyone running to the ACLU.
Let me introduce you to Gary James, proprietor of Gary’s Chicaro’s in Enid, Ok.
Charming, isn’t he?
Love the shirt, by the way. I wish all the bigoted assholes in the world would label themselves so obviously. It should be absolutely legal for them to do so.
Just as legal as making sure that Gary’s Chicaro’s gains the reputation of being the best little gay bar in Oklahoma. Or setting up on the public street out front with a camera**. I do so love the idea of handling bigots with the ridicule and shame they deserve. Let the market do its justice.
The freedom of speech is not there to protect pretty speech. It is specifically designed to protect speech that makes people uncomfortable. The kind of thing that starts revolutions. Freedom of association has no clause stating as long as your associating with the ‘right’ people. It also allows you not to associate with those you choose not to associate with. It’s set up that way on purpose.
Think long and hard before deciding ‘there outta be a law.’ They all have consequences, and one day, it won’t be your side deciding how to enforce it.
*I suppose that means I am bigoted against bigots
**From a reasonable distance, wouldn’t want to be harassing anyone. Know your rights as a photographer. Not that I’m suggesting anything. Wouldn’t want to give anyone any ideas.