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« Accounting for the Dearth of Ex Ante Ethical Reasoning with Regard to Technology | Main | Haiti Suffering Seventeen Months After Earthquake »

06/23/2011

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Jimbino

There are two problems here. First is that religious persons make mere habits and cultural traditions into moral questions. The Japanese famously don't consider sex a moral question, but to Western religions it is the chief moral question. The Muslims make defecation into a moral question and, along with the Jews and Catholics, choice of foods as well. I can imagine religious folks making the position of the toilet seat into a moral question.

The second problem is that a policy giving religious folks special rights to discriminate in commerce and public places would be unfair to atheists, humanists and free thinkers, much as our policy of subsidizing childbirth to the tune of $8000 and granting time off from work, while prohibiting use of public funds for abortion, satisfies the pronatalism of the RC church. There are those among us who would rather we got $8000 and time off from work for an abortion or for not breeding in the first place.

To me, an atheist, polluting the world with ever more babies is indeed a moral question. Should I then, as a Universal Life minister, shopkeeper or barber, refuse to serve breeders?

Our current policy of prohibiting discrimination in public accommodations and services, while not broad enough, seems to work fairly well. But if I were faced with a world in which the pledges of allegiance, crucifixes, Ten Commandments, blue laws, and other religious preferences of Jews, Catholics and Muslims were forced on our pluralistic society, effectively returning us to the Dark Ages of religion, I would have to advocate warfare against those religious oppressors.

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