Ruth Ann Dailey wrote one interesting sentence today: “Atheists have been making a lot of headlines in recent years — it’s the intellectually chic thing to be!” I appreciate this acknowledgment that atheist belong to one the fastest growing groups in America and that it is favored by the best and brightest around us!
Unfortunately, after this great start, the next 41 sentences were the biggest bunch of bull that I have seen in sometime. She sees not only no reason to accept atheism, but harbors a McCarthy era view that assumes atheism and communism is identical. She starts and ends the column by poo-pooing a case of blatant religious discrimination.
“The first salvo came from atheist John Wolff of Manheim, Lancaster County, who filed a discrimination complaint against a restaurant near him that offers a 10 percent discount on Sundays to customers who present a church bulletin. Mr. Wolff alleges that Prudhomme’s Lost Cajun Kitchen discriminates against him because he doesn’t attend church. A spokeswoman for the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission, which is investigating the complaint, said, “He is alleging he was offered different service based on his religious creed.”
Well, he wasn’t offered different service; he was offered a different price. And it wasn’t because of his creed but because he failed to bring in the appropriate piece of paper.”
Let see. Rosa Parks had the same bus ride no matter where she sat. Blacks at the lunch counter in the South at the same food as those at tables. Muslims thrown off planes for praying before boarding were treated the same as Catholics making the sign of the cross before boarding.
The point is here is that Mr. Wolff was offered a different service because he was offered a different price. The other diners got the adult menu at kid prices. He got the kid menu at adult prices. Why the price difference? Because he did not show up at church on Sunday were all good diners come from before dining.
Most importanly, Ruth Ann was apparently unaware of a little thing called Civil Rights Act, which applies to all businesses doing business with the general public. As FFRF says (emphasis added),
These “church bulletin discounts” show up as promotions at a variety of businesses including restaurants or grocery stores for anyone demonstrating their status as a believer or church attendee. These types of promotions are illegal under federal law. The Civil Rights Act states in relevant part, “All persons shall be entitled to the full and equal enjoyment of the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, and accommodations of any place of public accommodation . . . without discrimination on the ground of race, color, religion, or national origin.” 42 U.S.C. §2000a(a). As a place of “public accommodation,” it is illegal for restaurants, grocery stores or other businesses to discriminate, or show favoritism, on the basis of religion. Church bulletin discounts are restrictive promotional practices, which favor religious customers and deny customers who do not attend church, and nonbelievers, the right to “full and equal” enjoyment of the restaurant, store or other business.
Discounts for seniors, discounts for military, or discounts for cutting coupons out of the paper, are not violations of the Civil Rights Act. But discounts for race or religion is illegal. For Ruth Ann Daily to ignore this major fact is an outrage.
But Ruth Ann has never faced real religious discrimination, so she has assumed it doesn’t exist. If only she spent one day being among us intellectually chic, she might be able to see the world from the other side.