Anti-RFRA Is Pro-Bigotry (Plus, Bonus ‘Puter Personal Anecdote)
With all the hubbub about Indiana’s (not-so) new Religious Freedom Restoration Law, ‘Puter thought he’d take a bit of time to share a personal story.
As we all know by now (especially seeing as how ‘Puter’s been banging on about little else for days), Indiana passed a law stating state actors may not interfere with an individual’s sincerely held religious belief unless that interference is necessary to support a compelling state interest. Basically, if a government is going to engage in religious discrimination, it’d better have a pretty damned good reason for doing so.
Opponents of this law characterize it as anti-gay, even though the statute nowhere mentions any member of the LGBT community. Based on national commentary and the content of my Facebook feed, it appears to me many are insistent that religious practice must make way for LGBT rights in all aspects.
In short, in order to make up for very real past wrongs committed by society against the LGBT community, we now need to discriminate against religious practitioners who may or may not have participated in such discrimination in the past.
This is a dangerous viewpoint, and based on past experience can have unintended and equally discriminatory impacts perpetrated in the name of righting past wrongs.
Here’s ‘Puter’s little personal anecdote.
In 1991, ‘Puter was a college senior, sending out law school applications. ‘Puter did well enough in college, graduating with a 3.3 GPA and a bachelor’s degree in philosophy. ‘Puter sat for the LSATs, and did very well, scoring in the 99.8% percentile. Based on his LSAT score, ‘Puter decided to apply to top tier schools rather than the second tier and lower first tier schools that comprised his list before.
‘Puter applied to and was accepted at Washington University in St. Louis, a top 20 law school. ‘Puter was rejected by the University of Michigan and the University of Texas, both top tier law schools ranked higher than Washington University. ‘Puter would’ve attended the University of Texas or the University of Michigan had had been accepted, as they were better schools with better future job prospects (on paper at least) than Washington University. ‘Puter doesn’t regret for a moment attending Washington University, where he received an excellent legal education.
Later, as a result of two separate cases involving the admissions processes of both the University of Michigan and the University of Texas, ‘Puter learned he would have been accepted to either school had he been anything other than (1) White and (2) male.
During discovery, both law schools were required to turn over admissions data, including test scores, GPAs, class rank, race, gender and other factors for the year ‘Puter applied. Based on these data, ‘Puter’s aggregate scores were well in excess of the average admitted individuals who were women or minority, and were right about the average for admitted White males.
In essence, ‘Puter was prevented from attending the University of Texas and the University of Michigan for no other reason than the color of his skin and/or his gender in order to make up for centuries of discrimination (and other horrible crimes) against minorities and women in the United States. So much for Martin Luther King, Jr.’s request to judge individuals on the content of their character (merit) rather than the color of their skin. But, “Progress!,” ‘Puter guesses.
That’s where this debate on LGBT rights versus religious freedom is headed, back to a place where it’s considered acceptable to discriminate against a class of individuals as some sort of twisted notion of reparations. That is, “it’s OK to discriminate against other people today because in the past they (or their views) were favored.”
Well, if it’s not acceptable to discriminate against one group of people (minorities), why is it acceptable to discriminate against a different group of people (Whites) in a vain attempt to make things right for the first group of people (minorities)? It’s not.
We’ve had affirmative action (i.e., legal discrimination against Whites generally, and White males in particular) for nearly 50 years now, and it hasn’t meaningfully affected minorities, many of whom still suffer poor educational outcomes and diminished opportunity. If reverse discrimination were going to work, surely we’d have seen signs of it working by now.
Affirmative action’s primary legacy is bitter feelings. Blacks were promised the world’s riches and received the ghetto’s poverty. Whites were told to quit bitching about being punished for the sins of their fathers, because they’ll do just fine anyway, thank you very much.
Does anyone truly believe affirmative action worked as promised? And if you think so, why aren’t we done with affirmative action yet after two generations of trying?*
And that’s where ‘Puter’s personal anecdote ties back into today’s kerfuffle about LGBT rights.
People worked up about Indiana’s Religious Freedom Restoration Law are on the same path as affirmative action’s creators. “It’s just fine to discriminate against this group of people we don’t particularly care about, so long as it benefits a group of people we do care about.”
Constitution be damned, we know what’s right. Religious crazies must bend the knee before the unassailable (political) correctness of modernity. This position isn’t pro-LGBT, it’s pro-religious discrimination, plain and simple.
Today’s “screw religious rights, LGBT freedom for all” would do well to remember the lessons learned from affirmative action’s failure: those discriminated against in the name of ending discrimination will remember, and respond accordingly when afforded the opportunity.
‘Puter was on the receiving end of affirmative action’s reverse discrimination.
‘Puter hasn’t forgotten.
* ’Puter’s betting the Left’s response will be we just haven’t tried affirmative action hard enough yet. If only we had more affirmative action, surely we’d have a racial Utopia right here on Earth.
Always right, unless he isn’t, the infallible Ghettoputer F. X. Gormogons claims to be an in-law of the Volgi, although no one really believes this.
’Puter carefully follows economic and financial trends, legal affairs, and serves as the Gormogons’ financial and legal advisor. He successfully defended us against a lawsuit from a liquor distributor worth hundreds of thousands of dollars in unpaid deliveries of bootleg shandies.
The Geep has an IQ so high it is untestable and attempts to measure it have resulted in dangerously unstable results as well as injuries to researchers. Coincidentally, he publishes intelligence tests as a side gig.
His sarcasm is so highly developed it borders on the psychic, and he is often able to insult a person even before meeting them. ’Puter enjoys hunting small game with 000 slugs and punt guns, correcting homilies in real time at Mass, and undermining unions. ’Puter likes to wear a hockey mask and carry an axe into public campgrounds, where he bursts into people’s tents and screams. As you might expect, he has been shot several times but remains completely undeterred.
He assures us that his obsessive fawning over news stories involving women teachers sleeping with young students is not Freudian in any way, although he admits something similar once happened to him. Uniquely, ’Puter is unable to speak, read, or write Russian, but he is able to sing it fluently.
Geep joined the order in the mid-1980s. He arrived at the Castle door with dozens of steamer trunks and an inarticulate hissing creature of astonishingly low intelligence he calls “Sleestak.” Ghettoputer appears to make his wishes known to Sleestak, although no one is sure whether this is the result of complex sign language, expert body posture reading, or simply beating Sleestak with a rubber mallet.
‘Puter suggests the Czar suck it.