A couple of days ago I blogged about San Antonio’s proposed anti-bias ordinance, and a discerning reader noticed that I neglected to address a threshold issue (i.e., is any discrimination against the LGBT community tolerable), and instead I jumped directly to the issue that I wanted to discuss (i.e., which types of discrimination against the LGBT community are tolerable). I responded directly to the reader, but for the record, I am taking this opportunity to elaborate on my response.
The reader asked, if any discrimination based on race or religion is prohibited, then why should any discrimination against LGBT be tolerated. My response was as follows:
- “You accurately point out a flaw to my post that I noticed yesterday – i.e., it failed to distinguish between LGBT discrimination and racial/religious discrimination. The distinction is that the vast majority of Americans believes it is sinful to discriminate on the basis of race or religion. That is why America won’t tolerate any such discrimination. But Americans are still divided on whether discrimination against LGBT is sinful or, ironically, whether it is sinful to be LGBT. I agree that Americans are evolving, with same-sex marriage being a leading indicator, but I also think it is a reasonable compromise for now to allow people who think homosexuality is sinful to be able to decline to rent their house to or to decline to hire a person who is a homosexual.”
The reader subsequently followed up by stating that America would not allow racial discrimination even if a person’s religious believe approved it or slavery. I responded that I was not aware of any significant religion that approved discrimination against blacks or approved slavery and if there were, America would not tolerate such beliefs. This would be akin to America’s insistence that Utah and the Mormon Church repudiate bigamy.
My closing comment to the reader remains appropriate:
- “A representative democracy shouldn’t get too far in front of its people.”