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Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Samizdata quote of the day

How can an organisation claim it does not discriminate on the grounds of religion – which is a set of beliefs – and then fire someone for expressing those beliefs outside the organisation?

Tim Newman

4 comments to Samizdata quote of the day

  • George Atkisson

    The organization (Google) does not discriminate against those who follow its religion. The conservative gentleman’s beliefs are considered “hate speech” by Google’s religion. His beliefs are therefore invalid and are not protected by Google. He is therefore terminated and his beliefs expunged as a warning. Google is then freed of blasphemy and can claim no discrimination among its current believers. QED

  • Okker Bill

    No doubt also true about Google, George, but the organisations were ‘Rugby Australia’ and ‘NSW Rugby, outfits run by pillocks one and all.

  • Nullius in Verba

    “How can an organisation claim it does not discriminate on the grounds of religion – which is a set of beliefs – and then fire someone for expressing those beliefs outside the organisation?”

    I imagine the organisation would say because they’re damned if they do and damned if they don’t. The contradiction is in the law, that outlaws both discrimination against homosexuals and discrimination against religions that discriminate against homosexuals. I think the way the organisation tried to get round that was to say you’re free to believe it, but you voluntarily agree not to say it while you’re working for us, as part of the contract. Saying it is optional, in the religion, so they’re not stopping practice of the religion by asking you to keep your beliefs to yourself. And having signed it, it’s then a simple matter of breach of contract.

    You could call it a “Don’t ask – Don’t tell” sort of rule. They know perfectly well that a lot of their employees have politically incorrect beliefs, and as a corporation they don’t care. It only matters when what one of their employees says in public comes back to bite into their bottom line – losing them business or forcing them to expend PR effort defending against the flak. They use their PR machine to give their players a bigger public platform from which to promote their business. They’re not interested in having it used either to promote a particular religious belief, or to engage in a political fight for free speech. I doubt they’re all that interested in spending their money defending homosexuals, either. They just don’t want to be prosecuted.

    It could be interesting. While I think they’ve got him bang-to-rights on breach of contract, the question would be whether it’s discriminatory to have such a contractual term. But then they would have to resolve the contradiction inherent in the law, outlawing both discrimination and discrimination against those who believe in discrimination. How can you use coercive force to defend everybody’s liberty to say and do what they want?

    It’s possible that the courts might recognise that this implies a right to free speech, but I doubt they’ll go that way. More likely, they’ll argue that it’s OK to discriminate against those bits of belief systems that don’t respect other people’s freedoms. You’re welcome to believe in a bowdlerized non-authoritarian version of Christianity, but not authoritarian ones. And they’ll argue that ‘true’ Christianity is aligned with the current fashions in morality (God is moral by definition, we are certain this is moral, therefore God would agree with us), and might even make the claim that by saying it’s not you’re insulting the religion, engaging in blasphemy!

    And so it always was, with religion.

  • Paul Marks

    If the sporting organisation openly said “we refuse to allow believing Muslims, Christians or Jews to play” that would be vile – but honest.

    Instead they explicitly say we do not discriminate on grounds of religion – and then do exactly that.

    The left will try to square the circle by claiming that Islam, Christianity and Judaism do NOT teach that homosexual acts are wrong, but this effort by the left is a LIE as the teachings of these religions is quite clear.

    Should this man have said what he said? I think NOT – and not only because he expressed himself in very rude language but also it is up to all of us to deal with our OWN sins (not concentrate on the sins of other people). Someone who obsesses over the moral failings of other people is likely to ignore his own moral failings (which are often much worse than the people he attacks).

    We all struggle with terrible things within us (the struggle with the evil in ourselves is always present – every day) and “sexuality” is actually a very minor part of that struggle, an obsession with the sexual behaviour of other people is not a good sign.

    However, OF COURSE this man should be free to express his religious beliefs – just as other people (such as atheists) should be free to say that his beliefs are nonsense.