Pioneer cover

From the press release: From the moment he is handed a possibility of making the first alien contact, Saunders Maxwell decides he will do it, even if doing so takes him through hell and back.

Unfortunately, that is exactly where that journey takes him.

The vision that Zimmerman paints of vibrant human colonies on the Moon, Mars, the asteroids, and beyond, indomitably fighting the harsh lifeless environment of space to build new societies, captures perfectly the emerging space race we see today.

He also captures in Pioneer the heart of the human spirit, willing to push forward no matter the odds, no matter the cost. It is that spirit that will make the exploration of the heavens possible, forever, into the never-ending future.

Available everywhere for $3.99 (before discount) at amazon, Barnes & Noble, all ebook vendors, or direct from the ebook publisher, ebookit.

Ohio wedding photographer threatened with legal action over beliefs

Here we go again: A Christian wedding photography now faces legal action because she declined photographing a same-sex marriage.

Although the [same-sex] couple filed the complaint, Ohio is one of 13 states that does not allow same-sex marriages, and Bexley is also a municipality that does not prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation. Additionally, the Bexley Chamber of Commerce does not prohibit its members from discriminating based on sexual orientation.

The Bexley Chamber of Commerce issued a statement through Facebook on Monday condemning Schmackers’ refusal of service. The post continued by stating that board members have decided that the chamber’s policy must be changed so that this type of “discrimination” does not happen again.

Damn right. These evil Christians have got to be squelched and destroyed. They have no right to their religion. In fact, maybe we should round them up and put them in camps! That will show them that we believe in tolerance and freedom!

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I cannot thank the numerous people who so generously donated or subscribed to Behind the Black during this fund drive. The response was remarkable, and reflected the steady growth and popularity of the work I have been doing here for the past ten-plus years.

Thank you again!

Though the find-raising campaign is officially over, and I am no longer plastering the main page with requests for help, if you like what you have read you can still contribute, by giving either a one-time contribution or a regular subscription, as outlined in the tip jar below. Your support will allow me to continue covering science and culture as I have for the past twenty years, independent and free from any outside influence.

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  • Cotour

    I am just going to narrowly comment on the response to the request buy the videographer:

    “Unfortunately at this time I do not offer services for same-sex weddings, but thank you for your inquiry!”

    This was apparently a WRITTEN response to an email request and not a face to face interaction. How stupid are these people? (I am shaking my head)

    This is how a semi conscious, semi competent business operator properly responds: Thank you for your inquiry but I am not available for your event. PERIOD!

    If you notice the response is direct and it is respectful and it does not create any opportunity for misunderstanding and, most importantly it does not create any affront to the potential customer on any level that might cause LEGAL action, it is neutral.

    This is business: When situations / potential problems present themselves your job is to solve or mitigate those potential situations or problems and not create bigger situations or problems.

  • Edward

    Once again, Cotour, you advocate that your way of doing things is the only way to do them; no other methods should be attempted. Oh, and if another method *is* attempted, then governing bodies should be employed to make sure that only Cotour’s methods are performed. Your response supports the Chamber Board’s position and attacks the videographer’s.

    The videographer’s response was polite, much more polite than your recommended response. It isn’t as though the activity that she was turning down was a wedding as acknowledged by the state of Ohio, so she cannot be considered as turning away a normal part of her business. To say that she was would be to say that she must video any other customer’s definition of a wedding: polygamous weddings, or between humans and animals, or between adults and underage children, or even between close family members. Maybe even between a person and his or her sex toy.

    If your complaint was that he should have said “unavailable” (I would recommend against including the word “period” and especially not in all caps; that would be far worse than the polite response that the videographer gave), then the Chamber Board would still have a discrimination issue on its hands. The Chamber Board said, “The Chamber Board believes that discrimination in any form is wrong and should not be tolerated.”

    “Any form” is a broadly reaching statement. It means “any form.” Not only would it include all weddings that I described above, this includes “availability” of the videographer. Thus, your recommended response does not satisfy the criterion stated by the Chamber Board. The videographer would be discriminating based upon her own availability.

    The Chamber Board’s broad definition of discrimination would also include the customer’s ability to pay for the service. According to their intended policy, a business could not discriminate against a poor person.

    Surely, discriminating against the poor cannot be thought as hyperbole – going beyond what the Chamber Board meant by “discrimination in any form”. A poor couple desiring a legally accepted wedding, one acknowledged by the government, has more rights than a couple that desires a ceremony that is not even acknowledged by the government.

    If the gay couple’s ceremony — which the government does not consider legal — must be participated in, what other extra-legal activities is the videographer supposed to also participate in? To avoid “discrimination in any form,” should a customer be able to coerce her into creating a pornographic video (although this may be legal there, I don’t know the laws in that state or town, but it could equally violate the videographer’s morals)?

    The customer’s complaint is with the government, which does not acknowledge their wedding, but the customer is using the Chamber of Commerce to intimidate and coerce the proprietor. What is the word for such a thing? That’s right: extortion.

    This abuse of power of the Chamber Board is tyrannical, according to the first definition:

    How do you not see the extortion and the tyranny that you support?

    You complain that the proprietor did not respond in person but by electronic communication. Since she could only have learned of their email address by its inclusion in the letter, it seems that the couple’s intention was that a response by letter or email would be acceptable. The Chamber Board was likewise informed by electronic communication rather than in person. Was it rude for them not to hear about it in person?
    “This incident came to our attention last month via an electronic communication delivered to the Chamber on February 5.”

    On the issue of gay couples being able to destroy businesses or violate the owner’s rights based upon religion, your double standard is notorious.

  • Cotour

    The “PERIOD” was not part of the message, it was indicating that the sentence was ended. My point is that you say only what is necessary to communicate your inability to provide your service. PERIOD.

    If in business you were to ask me a question and my only answer to you is the word “NO” then the conversation is over. If you were to ask me a question and I answered you that I will not be able to provide you my service because you are gay, are black, are white, are Chinese, are a devil worshiper, are a Marxist, etc, then you have created an unnecessary confrontational situation. My observation in this situation is that poor business management is being employed.

    In business you objectively (without emotion) solve problems and do not subjectively (with emotion) create bigger and better problems. Do that often enough and you will find yourself working for someone else.

    Edward you put a smile on my face , you do not disappoint :) My comment was limited to good business practices and not related to any governmental threat of a law suit. You have created something related to me in this instance that I have not commented on.

  • I was under the impression that anti-discrimination statutes and administrative directives only applied to public entities, not private ones. Government interference in individual freedom-of-association decisions is a direct violation of the First Amendment, and some individual or group needs to take these entities to court. Government-directed choices in private matters is in no way a sign of a free society. This slippery slope started long ago, but the categorization of particular criminal acts as ‘hate’ crimes certainly steepened the grade.

  • PeterF

    I have to agree with Cotour here. This would not be a topic of discussion were it not for the business owner making a point that she would not accept the job because of the subject matter. The simplest way to refuse service would have been to just ignore the E-mail inquiry. But I suppose the videographer felt that would be rude…

    Will the controversy hurt business? I doubt the videographer would have been able to buy advertising that would equal the free publicity. I guess it will depend on the demographics of the community as to how the notoriety effects business.

    “the conflict, which has stirred outrage among gay rights advocates, ” This is the reason we are discussing this. This has all the earmarks of another battle in the lawfare being waged by the left in order to change our society through judicial mandate.

    Will the sign “No shirt, No shoes, No service.” eventually become unlawful because it discriminates against nudists? There have already been challenges to anti-nudity laws, oddly they seem to originate in mostly gay communities…

    Personally, I believe the first amendment codifies the right to “I reserve the right to deny service to anyone, for any reason.” statement regardless of any tortuous interpretation of any anti-discrimination statute. To force anyone to provide any service through the use of governmental power creates a form of slavery through the threat of the use of deadly force.

    Just try to refuse to comply with ANY government directive, eventually you will be confronted by an armed representative of the government to enforce your submission.

  • Cotour

    Everyone is free to speak and conversely they can not be compelled to speak. If the rules of business are changing then adapt in the way that keeps your freedom to choose intact and do not allow the change to modify your freedoms. Adapt and survive, refuse and perish.

    I am not available for that event. PERIOD. Provide no other explanation.

    A business owner must establish the limits of what they reasonably will and will not do within the context of their particular business and learn how to properly operate within those established parameters.

    When the government rightfully or wrongfully gets involved in such issues they can only go as far as the “offender” gives them evidence of said discrimination. Like it or not a Democracy is a liberal structure and can / does become more liberal as time marches on, at times it may be pushed too far.

    One of the first rules of business: Learn when to keep thy mouth shut.

    Edward, we are working the other end of the issue here.

  • Edward

    Interesting that the response to a “sticky” situation is to be rude to your customer. That runs in the face of the arguments that Cotour has made in the past, that a good proprietor satisfies his customers, even to the point of sacrifice (such as violating his own soul).

    “ if you are a good enough customer you can demand any thing you like and [if] they would like to make you happy they will supply it”

    However, your position, Cotour, is that a customer should be able to demand anything that they desire, and a governing body should be able to force the business to comply, whether the customer is “good enough” or not.

    Neither Cotour nor PeterF addressed the requirement of the Chamber Board, “that discrimination in any form is wrong and should not be tolerated.” To turn down a customer for any reason would necessarily be to discriminate against that customer for that reason.

    Wouldn’t a good proprietor hire temporary workers in order to fill the extra business? One of my uncles’s business “war” stories is when he did just that, and saved his company from the embarrassing situation of being unable to satisfy a good customer’s request.

    Thus, unavailability is not a sufficient reason, according to the Chamber of Commerce. Indeed, if they do not tolerate discrimination of any kind, then does that not put an onus on the proprietor to explain to the customer what non-discriminatory reason he is refusing the work? If a proprietor may rudely say “no,” then how does that not violate the “discrimination in any form” provision of the Chamber of Commerce’s position? To avoid the explanation would be to look like the proprietor were hiding her discrimination.

    If there is a reason that the proprietor is unable to satisfy the desires of the potential customer (including violation of the proprietor’s US Constitution guaranteed rights), wouldn’t it be better for all involved that the customer seek a business that can?

    No matter how narrowly you try to slice this topic, it always comes down to the violation of the rights of the proprietor. To insist that the proprietor be rude to his customers is to tyrannically direct how she runs her business.

    No matter how you discuss this topic, it comes down to a small portion of the population forcing its views and the promotion and participation thereof onto the rest of us (freedom-of-association decisions, as Blair Ivey notes, below), even to the point that governments, courts, and Chambers of Commerce are (mis)used to tyrannically enforce that minority’s demands.

    Would you be so eager to use these arguments if that minority were the KKK, the NAZIs, or NAMBLA?

    Once again, I ask that you favor the constitutional rights of the proprietor over the mere convenience of the customer.

  • Cotour

    Edward, your constant proclivity to interpret something like this in absolute terms is where you go off the rails, that is not how things in reality work.

    If a potential customer walks into a store and what they want is not there then they may politely ask for it and indicate to the proprietor that a demand exists or they will go to another store and get what they want. If the first store owner wants to acquire their business then he makes sure that that item / product IS there for the next time that or another customer may come in. Its a good policy to show interest in a customers requests, especially if they are a regular visitor to your store. No one demands anything and no one is compelled to supply anything based on any demand, NO ONE.

    (I again want to make a distinction between the different kinds of business venues that exist before you go off the deep end as you usually do. In this example we are talking about a store that is open to the general public and customers come in, select what they would like to purchase, go to a counter and pay for those items and go home and enjoy their purchase.)

    Everything not being an absolute and the fact that there are different kinds of business venues a business owner must be able to properly and reasonably operate their business so as not to run afoul of any body, especially the law. Your interpretation would indicate that every entrepreneur first looks to the government for the instructions to run their business and that that is somehow the road to success. That is not how things operate, but you must be smart enough not to shoot yourself in the foot.

    (Q: What do you call a person that brings $100K to a poker game, sits down to play but does not know the rules of the game? A: A moron and someone who use to have $100K. You don’t sound like you have ever played poker Edward.)

    In this particular videographer example where someone inquires for a service to be provided and the proprietor does not particularly want to participate in the event the best way to deal with the situation is to just say that they are not available, they are booked. PERIOD. More of a gray area but a situation that can certainly be dealt with without having to involve government agencies.

    If you would like to call that being rude then so be it, life is sometimes rude. Get use to it.

    The over arching component to the story is the “injured” party involving the government because of some perceived offense to their rights received by them and the ever more Liberal tending government being so ready, willing and able to go along for the ride. When it gets to the point where Capitalism and free markets are so perverted that laws are passed where the government actually runs all businesses in America then all is lost and this conversation does not matter, but until that moment stupidity is its own reward.

    The solution to this situation as a business owner is to be aware of the laws that might effect their business, as irrational as they may be, and be prepared to reasonably and effectively deal with them when something comes in the door that they do not want to participate in.

  • pzatchok

    Try this idea out.

    The store owner just politely says he is not available to cover the event. Never giving his reason.

    Compare it to this.
    A landlord turns down a gay couple very politely. Never giving a reason, but is later found to have rented to the next straight couple.
    And is then taken to court for it. It has happened far to many times to even need verification. We have all seen it in the news.

    Just like the wedding photographer who politely turns down a gay couple(even without giving a reason) but who is later found to do the vary requested service for a straight couple at the very requested time.

    A small businessman with a store front has NO WAY to turn down any reasonable request of any kind. None, freedom of association is over for all small businesses.

    If the LGBT community really cared about being mainstream they would be working at promoting LGBT friendly storefronts instead of attacking those who are not friendly to them.
    They would be working at sending those store fronts friendly to them more and more business.

    But no. Now they are just an attack group. Actually out looking for places and people to attack.

    Attacks like this will only lead to a court redefining a private business vs a public business. And or redefining the meaning of ‘freedom of association’.
    And they might not like the outcome.

  • PeterF

    You must have missed;
    ” I reserve the right to deny service to anyone, for any reason”. Is self determination not an unalienable right?

    Personally, I think she could have turned them away without pissing them off, but its her private business to run how she wants.

    Every choice discriminates against everything we don’t choose. That seems to be a natural law of existence, like gravity. God will be the final arbiter for us regarding the path not taken

    So what if the Lesbians are offended for being discriminated against? They have no right to compel her labor. Thats slavery.

    The Chamber of Commerce’s attempt at force is Fascism, pure and simple. Eventually the citizens will realize this and throw the bums out!

  • Cotour

    All valid points, there is always going to be some zealot on both sides of the argument that will attempt to entrap a business owner who they feel is slighting or discriminating against them, whether justified or not . And you will have the business owner that is down right unfriendly or may well be highly judgmental to the point of discrimination. That is just how an element of the real world chooses to operate. Chooses.

    Your point here however:

    “A small businessman with a store front has NO WAY to turn down any reasonable request of any kind. None, freedom of association is over for all small businesses.”

    Is a bit contradictory and is not correct, why would anyone that has an open to the public store front turn down a reasonable request? I employ the word NO all the time when appropriate and no one really has a problem with it. Open to the public includes the entire public as long as they conduct themselves in a reasonable and non disruptive way. Those are the rules to that particular game, rules for the owner and more importantly the understood rules of behavior for the public.

    I will relate a true and non embellished story related to this subject:

    Its a beautiful, warm summer day and I am sitting outside in front my establishment at a small table with a very pretty female friend and a not so pretty male friend. I spot two large gentleman walking about a block away and understand that they are intoxicated. One Caucasian man who was about 6′ 240 lbs. and the other Hispanic gentleman was about 5′ 10″ and 300 lbs. I was pretty sure that they were heading for my location so I prepared myself.

    Sure enough they arrive and they are well over the intoxicated reasonable line and the Hispanic gentleman is the talking representative of the group and begins to sweet talk my friend (not the male friend Edward). This is not popular with me but I roll with it. After a short conversation where he is informing my friend of how wonderful he is he attempts to walk into my building.

    At this point I stand up and block the door way and inform him that he should come back at another time, he is intoxicated, I will not be selling him anything today. This is not popular with him and he turns to his friend and tells him that I will not allow them in the building, his friend at this point realizes that he is out of order and I can see he wants no trouble, he stays outside and begins to slowly inch back towards the direction they came.

    I now call my lady friend to come inside and as I do Rico sauve takes the opportunity to walk in. My confrontation was all done very calmly and most importantly respectfully. Ninety eight times out of a hundred times that something like this goes on respect is the key, no yelling, no screaming, just calmly dealing with reality as need be.

    I suppose if you wanted to you could classify me as a “racist” because he was of Spanish heritage and I am calling him Rico Suave, but believe me he deserves the moniker. I begin all of my transactions with respect, and in turn expect respect, always. I judge no one by what they look like, where they come from, what color they are or what religion they may adhere to, this is business. I have a good time at work and meet mostly the nicest people of all colors and persuasions, everyone leaves with a smile, that is my goal. And as a point of reference I conduct my personal life in the same way, which does not mean that I do not have an extremely high bar to be met for me to consider you more than an acquaintance.

    Rico suave now informs me that he was a LAWYER and I was going to sell him what he wanted and if I did not he wanted to see my business license, he was going to call the police and he was going to sue me. At this point I became a bit more authoritative and informed him that I was not going to sell him anything and further more I insisted that he remove himself from my property, immediately.

    Now this is a situation that can easily spiral out of control and I was not entirely sure where this would all wind up but my course was set and that was that, my adrenalin was pumping. After a few tense minutes Rico wisely takes his situation outside and whips out his phone and is pacing and talking on his phone outside of the building back and forth and from my point of view he could do that all day long, as long as he was not on my property, but I am curious who the hell is he talking to. It could not be the police.

    I few more minutes go by and Rico is getting tired of waiting or he realized what a gigantic A-hole LAWYER he was being so he drifted back up back the way he came, his friend was no where to be seen. I figure the whole thing is over, and that is usually how something like that ends, people understand that they are out of line in the context of being a customer, they think a bit and they live to hopefully not repeat their inappropriate behavior in the future.

    A couple of minutes later a police car screeches to a halt in front of my place and two serious looking officers jump out and I realize that Rico the LAWYER has in his drunken stupidity actually called the police to deal with me. I meet the officers outside and they ask me “whats wrong, we got a call, you have a problem?” (keep in mind I never call the police and I know everyone). I am laughing as I explain what had just gone on and they look at each other in disbelief, they ask for a description of the guy and where he went and take off after him shaking their heads to “follow up on his complaint”.

    The next morning I go for coffee at the local diner and am at the front counter and I look down the sitting counter and who do you think is sitting there? Yes, its Rico, who when he sees me just turns and lowers his head and try’s to hide his 300 lbs. of connected LAWYERLYNESS behind a news paper. JACKASS.

    Now that was business and I do not take any of that personally, if Rico came in that same next day and wanted to make a purchase I would treat him like nothing ever happened and he could purchase what ever he wanted, we may even have a good laugh about it. Why ? Because that’s how you do open to the public business.

  • pzatchok

    Your stance was closely backed up by the fact they were publicly intoxicated.

    Though if the guy wanted to he could have insisted you allow him entrance and service that day and later taken you to court over your denial of him.

    His being drunk in no way denies him his rights. Or your service.
    Unless your protected by having a liquor license.

    You got lucky. His being a layer means he has almost no legal fees to take you to court over it.

    It might just have been his personal embarrassment that kept you safe. But nothing more.

    He could have also turned violent. Being drunk.

    You had no real proof he was drunk. he could have been a little insane and your denial could be seen as discrimination on that count.
    He could have been having a medical reaction to something. Your denial could have killed him.
    You have no way of telling if he was drunk from a distance. That is why cops do field sobriety tests. To weed out the medical problems and mental cases from the intoxicated.

    Your reactions in that case speak more about the extent and degree of your bigotry and judementalism.

    He may have acted like a cad but you acted like an over protective ass trying to impress someone.

    By the way it doesn’t impress anyone taking advantage of a drunk. You picked the fight, he didn’t.

    You could have also called him ‘The ladies Man’ Leon Phelps.
    Calling someone Rico Suave in a derogatory was is racist. Not could be, but IS.

  • Edward

    > “No one demands anything and no one is compelled to supply anything based on any demand, NO ONE.”

    And yet your arguments consistently insist that the government and chambers of commerce should be allowed to require that shopkeepers comply with each customer’s request as though they were demands. Make up your mind. Either a shopkeeper can discriminate for one reason or another, or the shopkeeper must comply with the customer’s request as though it were a demand that the Chamber of Commerce requires to be met.

    Does the shopkeeper have the right to refuse service or must she cater to the customer against her religious beliefs?

    > “In this example we are talking about a store that is open to the general public and customers come in, select what they would like to purchase, go to a counter and pay for those items and go home and enjoy their purchase.”

    No. In this example we are discussing a customer asking a shopkeeper to videograph a wedding against her religious beliefs. How did you miss that part of the article?

    > “In this particular videographer example where someone inquires for a service to be provided and the proprietor does not particularly want to participate in the event the best way to deal with the situation is to just say that they are not available, they are booked.”

    The article makes clear that this is not acceptable to the Chamber of Commerce’s board. To refuse service for any reason (including state of sobriety) would be the very reason for discriminating against the customer. You wouldn’t refuse to sell to a drunkard, would you? Oh, that’s right, you would, but the Bexley Chamber of Commerce would call that a form of discrimination, and Rico would have a legitimate discrimination complaint with the Chamber.

    Lack of availability is likewise discriminating against the customer for reason that the customer was time-challenged or the proprietor too unfriendly toward the customer to hire temporary workers. Or that the proprietor wishes to preserve her religious rights.

    As you have stated repeatedly, a proprietor who does not discriminate finds a way to serve each customer that he wants to keep as a customer. However, if the proprietor does not want to keep the customer, then she necessarily is discriminating against that customer in some form or other — however, the Chamber Board *explicitly* stated “that discrimination in any form is wrong and should not be tolerated.”

    The position of the Board is that in Bexley, Ohio, every member business is required to serve each desire of each customer as though it were a demand. *This* is the position that we are arguing. Not “No shirt, no shoes, no service” is OK in that town, because that is a form of discrimination and thus deemed intolerable by the Board.

    In most other places, proprietors have the option to discriminate against customers based upon various criteria, such as not wearing shirts or shoes, or being inebriated, or having previously created a disturbance in the business. I find these among the many valid and tolerable forms of discrimination against customers, but the Bexley Chamber Board does not.

    And I certainly do not want to be coerced to violate my principles in order to serve a customer. Frankly, I think a soul is worth much more than mere money.

    > “Its a good policy to show interest in a customers requests…”

    Which the videographer’s response did, but your recommended rude response failed to do.

    > “More of a gray area but a situation that can certainly be dealt with without having to involve government agencies.”

    Except that your position has consistently favored that government agencies get involved once the customer realizes that he must go to another business for the desired goods or services. Surely, despite your arguments, you do not mean to advocate that the government get involved if the customer feels that the response from the proprietor was rude or otherwise unfavorable to his desires?
    However, you keep arguing such a position — that shopkeepers must be coerced by the government to violate their religious beliefs in order to satisfy their customers.

    > “…before you go off the deep end as you usually do.”

    So, according to you, defending the US Constitution, the natural rights of We the People, and the intentions of the Founding Fathers is “going off the deep end?”

    > “Everything not being an absolute…”

    You keep saying that, yet I keep explaining that everything is not absolute, that the First Amendment protections take precedence over customer requests. You are the one who continually insists that customer requests are absolute and should require proprietors to violate their religious rights.

    You also keep giving examples in which *your* rights and desires should come before your customers’ rights and desires, but when it comes to another proprietor who wishes to preserve her First Amendment rights, you suddenly argue that the customers’ desires are paramount, and that the government should control said business in order to guarantee the customer gets his desired goods or services.

    This is a terrible (yet consistent) inconsistency on your part.

    > “The over arching component to the story is the “injured” party involving the government…”

    That is a different (though related) story. This story is about how the Chamber of Commerce, a non-government organization of business owners, should govern its member businesses. In this case, they insist that *any* form of discrimination should not be tolerated.

    > “The solution to this situation as a business owner is to be aware of the laws that might affect their business…”

    Except that the videographer violated no law. Neither did the other proprietors in any of the many other cases that we have discussed over the past several months. Indeed, it is the customers who have misused the courts, legislatures, and now a chamber of commerce in order to force their way over the religious rights of several shopkeepers. I am asking you to see and understand this point, that governing bodies should not be abused by a minority in order to create a tyranny over others.

    This is the tactic that is being used, to great effect, by several customers who have discovered that one shop or another does not provide the service that they desire. Rather than find a shop that does, they involve governing bodies to pervert free market capitalism so that these governing bodies run the businesses by proxy, forcing them into providing goods or services that they would not otherwise offer. The shopkeepers lose the right to run their shops as they wish — the very definition of free markets — and must comply with so many laws, rules, and regulations that their choices are almost non-existent.

    That you don’t see this explains a lot about why your position has consistently been against the religious rights of the shopkeepers.

    > “When it gets to the point where Capitalism and free markets are so perverted that laws are passed where the government actually runs all businesses in America then all is lost…”

    You are almost there, favoring liberty over tyranny, and yet, what you complain about, above, is the position that you continually advocate, that government and governing bodies be allowed to tell business owners how to run their businesses, even (or especially) if it results in the violation of the business owners’ religious rights.

    Once again, I ask you to see that reason, liberty, and the rights of We the People should win over the tyranny that is advocated by the Bexley, Ohio, Chamber Board and by several other governing bodies in this country. Your right to discriminate against drunkards, to prevent them from entering your establishment, may one day depend upon it.

  • Cotour

    My point is that there must be someone that must make a responsible decision related to such matters, the public does not run open to the public businesses, yours and Edwards positions on this are ridiculous.

    Could all of those things happen? Yes, but if you are unable to calmly, reasonably and effectively deal with situations when they present themselves then the the public WILL run the business, read that as being unemployed. The Flower lady and this photographer are behind the reality curve on this subject.

    And I had no desire or need to prove anything to anyone, the two of them together out weighed me by 350 lbs., if they did not leave I would have just called the police and they would have dealt with them.

    “His being drunk in no way denies him his rights. Or your service.”

    That is just BS, he has rights all day long but he has precluded himself from service for the moment by being intoxicated, unreasonable and disruptive in a venue where he knows he should not be, your going to have to trust me on this. The public is expected to act reasonably and not be disruptive to the business, and there may be some flexibility here and there based on venue. I will bend over backwards to accommodate most every and all people and I have no desire to ruin my or anyone else’s day. I do not look for trouble, and trouble is out there.

    “You could have also called him ‘The ladies Man’ Leon Phelps.” Now YOUR a racist.

    Im telling you about real life not some hypothetical legal argument that only exists bouncing around in someones head who has never had the experience and / or their investment on the line. I do it every day.

    (On another subject, I think I remember that you are a machinist. I just received and got going a new CNC laser cutter system, very, very cool.)

  • Edward

    Cotour wrote:
    > “… yours and Edwards positions on this are ridiculous.”

    It is ridiculous that if a shop does not provide the goods or services that the customer desires then the customer find one that does? Please explain how that is ridiculous. For most people, that is common sense.

    > “but if you are unable to calmly, reasonably and effectively deal with situations when they present themselves”

    The shopkeepers in all the situations that we have discussed along these lines have *ALL* calmly, reasonably, and effectively dealt with the situations, sometimes even to the point of suggesting shops that provided the desired goods or services. Why do you argue “facts” that are counter to the evidence? The only reason that I can think of is that you are throwing up red herrings to distract the conversation.

    > “The Flower lady and this photographer are behind the reality curve on this subject.”

    If by “reality curve” you mean that we are entering a fascist environment where free market enterprise is being destroyed, then we are arguing that it should not be destroyed. You are on the anti-free market side of this argument. Please reconsider your position so that you can run your own business as you desire, not as some bureaucrat who has never been to your shop desires.

    > “And I had no desire or need to prove anything to anyone …”

    An extraordinary claim requires extraordinary proof. [— Marcello Truzzi] You must make your case that free markets are not good, that these shopkeepers must be told how to do their business, rather than allow the market (the customers) choose other shops and allow these shops to go out of business. As I have explained, free market capitalism is responsible for the prosperity of America, Europe, and the blossoming prosperity in India and China. You, however, favor the idea that government should choose the winners and the losers through overregulation and control.

    As for your stance on the drunkard customer, the position of the Bexley Chamber of Commerce would not allow you to discriminate against him for being drunk. You would be required to serve him, as to not do so was explicitly stated as “should not be tolerated.” This is the point being argued, here.

    > “Im telling you about real life…”

    And the article is also real life. The Chamber Board has stated its tyrannical position, we are complaining about it, and you are defending it.

    Once again, I ask that you change your position away from defending tyranny and toward defending liberty.

  • Cotour

    This is the slanted way the story is characterized:

    “A Christian wedding photography now faces legal action because she declined photographing a same-sex marriage.”

    This is a less slanted and more honest way the story should have been characterized:

    ” A Christian wedding photographer now faces legal action because she refused to photograph a wedding after finding out the customers were gay and she told them that she would not photograph their wedding for that specific reason”

    Its a puzzle, figure it out.

    Has the government become too ready, willing and able to jump into such matters? Possibly. But if that is true then a business owner must make strategic adjustments to counter balance this temporary or permanent paradigm. Will it be too bad if that is so? Possibly.

  • Edward

    Cotour wrote: “Has the government become too ready, willing and able to jump into such matters? Possibly. But if that is true then …”

    … We the People must take back our government from the tyrants who are too ready, willing, and able to jump into such matters.

    *This* is what I mean when I say that you, Cotour, are willing to accept and defend tyranny. You do not think that We the People should control our government but that our government should be free to change the way we do business (and the way that we live our lives), from free market capitalism into the tyrannical crony capitalism that is becoming the new normal.

    Once again, I ask that you change your position away from defending tyranny and toward defending liberty.

    Is the way that you would have characterized the story more honest or just the way that you would have slanted the story? Indeed, your characterization is that the shopkeeper is bigoted against gays, but like the florist in our previous argument, she could be very welcoming to other events put on by the couple (e.g. birthday parties) but does not want to harm her soul by participating in an event that “conflicted with her biblical understanding that marriage should only be between one man and one woman.” (From the article.)

    Your characterization completely ignores that possibility, presenting only one side of the story rather than both sides. The article presented both sides, in its opening sentence. Presenting only one side is completely slanted; presenting both sides is not.

  • Edward

    PeterF wrote on March 22, 2015 at 9:07 am, way far above:
    > You must have missed;
    > ” I reserve the right to deny service to anyone, for any reason”. Is self determination not an unalienable right?

    Self determination, Peter, is an unalienable right. It is what the right to pursue happiness is all about. Without self determination, how can anyone pursue happiness? Those who have self determination rarely choose a path that they know will make them unhappy (and when they do, it usually makes them happy in some other way, such as making someone else happy). However, if someone else is choosing paths for us, someone such as a government bureaucrat, then it is unlikely that the path is the one that we would have chosen for ourselves.

    > Personally, I think she could have turned them away without pissing them off,

    I don’t. I think that they were spoiling for a fight from anyone who turned them down. If they weren’t spoiling for a fight, then they would have done as every other customer does and found a videographer who would take their job.

  • Cotour

    In the mean time, as we all attempt to dial back government we adapt and survive to exist for the now and to fight another day. I get your point Edward, your pleadings do not fall on deaf ears.

  • Edward

    I’m still hoping, one day soon (is today too soon to hope for?), to find my pleadings falling on agreeing ears. I hope that you stop defending tyranny and start advocating for liberty, despite the tyranny that we find ourselves in right now.

  • Cotour

    Be hopeful, be ever hopeful, and the reason you and I can have hope is called the Constitution of the United States of America. May it never be torn asunder.

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