And So I Go: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

Supreme Court again takes up a case of discrimination.

Posted on: April 19, 2010

Those of you who are regular readers know I try to keep a close watch on the Supreme Court.  Today the Court takes up a case of  blatant discrimination based on religion altho the  defendants have stated otherwise.  It is  another move by the Progressives  to destroy religion which is necessary to destroying a nation.  For the last 50 years more and more Americans have pulled away from religion and strict adherence to the teachings of the Bible.  Even those who stayed in the Church and indeed Church leaders  have relaxed their moral standards in their misguided effort to appear “modern” and “tolerant”.  So this is what it has come to:  those to whom the religions and religious have offered tolerance have themselves become intolerant of  of the “tolerators”!  Ironic isn’t it?  but this is how tyrants and  those who hate humanity always operate.

So let us wait to see how the Supreme Court rules in this case;  I have copied the entire article from the Cato Institute for your benefit and also offered some further references.  BB


The Court Looks at Freedom of Association

Posted by Roger Pilon

On Monday morning the Supreme Court will hear oral argument in a case that illustrates clearly how modern American anti-discrimination law can be used to undermine basic human rights. The case, Christian Legal Society v. Martinez, arose after the Hastings College of Law, a large public law school in San Francisco, denied CLS the same recognition and support it granted to some 60 other student organizations on the ground that CLS, contrary to the Hastings nondiscrimination policy, discriminates by requiring that its members and officers abide by certain key tenets of the Christian faith. In a word, in the name of anti-discrimination, Hastings, a government institution, is discriminating against CLS, which is simply exercising its speech, religious, and associational rights.

Cato filed an amicus brief in the case, written by Richard A. Epstein, professor of law at the University of Chicago. To barely summarize our argument, freedom is at the core of the American vision, including freedom of private association. But association has two sides: the right to associate with willing others; and the right not to associate with others, for whatever reason, which amounts to the right to discriminate. Public institutions, by contrast, belong to all of us, so they may discriminate only for reasons closely connected to their missions. Since individuals will associate only if they think themselves better off by doing so, social welfare is improved when government protects private rights of association while itself studiously avoiding discrimination.

Our history in this area has been uneven, of course. Although economic association was generally protected, slavery and Jim Crow were stark exceptions, along with certain other restrictions on personal association. As Progressive Era attacks on the distinction between private and public grew, however, freedom of association in the economic sphere came to be restricted, first by regulatory and later by anti-discrimination laws. Yet in time, courts began carving out exceptions for “personal” or “intimate” association — drawing lines not nearly as bright as that between private and public.

Those decisions today constitute a body of precedents that prohibit government from directly discriminating against parties who are exercising their rights of “expressive association.” But they also protect against indirect discrimination through the imposition of “unconstitutional conditions.” Thus, Hastings cannot tell CLS, “You’re free to go elsewhere to practice your religion, but if you enter our ‘limited public forum,’ which is open to others, you’ve got to give up one or more of your constitutionally protected rights.” In other words, although Hastings doesn’t have to recognize or support any student organizations, once it opens its doors to some, it must do so for all. To do otherwise is to engage in forbidden viewpoint discrimination. Read Cato’s brief for the full story.

Roger Pilon • April 18, 2010 @ 3:40 pm
Filed under: General; Law and Civil Liberties

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4 Responses to "Supreme Court again takes up a case of discrimination."

In the view of some, our society should have never embarked down the road of trying to prevenet or deter discrimination against any group of people.

Are there some societal benefits associated with having prejudice and bigotry clearly exposed and out in the open, and freely practiced?

Wouldn’t people then make better and more informed decisions about where to live, work, and with whom to associate? Why keep discrimination in the closet through legal coercion? Why not justg let every one do what they legitimately feel?

I don’t understand what you mean Reggie. Prejudice in America was an awful thing and began with the Pilgrims. Each new groups of immigrants were vilified and abused by those who came before. And the Blacks who were kept down and poor in the South East until the Civil Rights movement was appalling. We the People HAD to make it the right of ALL people to choose their religion, where they live, where they choose to go, where they eat and make purchases and every aspect of their life.

Now I do agree that the laws on so called “hate speech” has gone too far. Americans have the right to Freedom of speech and this includes even vulgar and vile words. These “hate speech” laws were made to protect only special groups and not the entire population and they are wrong. The people themselves would censor ugly hateful speech; witness the backlash on the so-called Baptist group targeting soldiers and funerals.

Is this what you were saying? BB

Another way of putting my question? Aren’t our effort to prevent or deter discrimination and prejudice just other forms of political correctness?

Are the negative ramifications associated with trying to address discrimination (such as affirmative action) more costly and problematic than the discrimination itself?

Why not let people discriminate, and fight the best fight that they can, and let us move on?

I believed then and I still believe that affirmative action was necessary to give Blacks an opportunity to prove themselves to the skeptics, especially in the Southeastern states. I know of two positions where I was the better qualified candidate and the position went to a Black woman instead. That was okay with me because I knew I could easily get another job offer whereas perhaps they could not. The color of ones skin DID matter in America, and it was wrong.

Now however I feel that affirmative action has long out lived its usefulness and is being used by Blacks who never suffered discrimination simply to get ahead without the effort needed to qualify. This bothers me greatly. There is a vast difference in the attitudes of younger Blacks than the attitudes of those I worked with during the early civil rights movement. Then it was just wanting the right to compete, the right of choice, the right to a level playing field. That was all. Now, as I have stated I think it is used somewhat as a weapon against Whites and a crutch and cover for laziness. So yes I guess some efforts to even the playing field have become even more problematic for those who were discriminated against than if time had just been given and people allowed to fight each battle on their own. If that had happened then by now racism I believe would have probably been a thing of the past except for the proverbial “red necks” who I am sorry to say will always be with us. Some people simply need someone to hate and blame for their own short comings.

What I fear happening now is a bad backlash. Somehow everything that was done to “improve” the lives of the Black community has had negative outcomes. I don’t understand why Reggie. I truly don’t. Why did the welfare offered the poor have the outcome of causing Black illegitimate birth rate to go from 24% in 1960 to 70+% and rising now? Why are Black families on welfare for life and going into now the third generation? White illegitimacy went from 4% to a peak of 27% and now is dropping. There are far more Whites on welfare but then there are far more Whites, and their time on welfare averages 3 years.

It wasn’t supposed to be this way. Tho of course some brilliant men such as Sen. Patrick Moynihan did warn us in the late 1960’s that our current situation was going to happen. I know the making welfare available only to women and children forced poor families to break up and the men to leave. But, the rule applied to both races. What made it affect Black families so much more destructively?

Reggie, I simply do not understand and the “cultural differences” argument doesn’t do it for me. Dam it! We are all Americans raised within the same culture so there are of course some differences but there should not be so great a disparity.

I once came to the conclusion that time spent in America took, for lack of a better word, “hunger” out of families. I used my own family as my model. My father’s family went down in the social and cultural and educational level with the generations. Each generation seemed more satisfied with less. On the other hand my mothers parents were immigrants. Dirt poor right off the boat they pushed themselves and their children to succeed. It was the same with the grandchildren. The great grandchildren (my children) weren’t as driven to good grades and higher education and it is evident in the careers they have chosen.

Maybe this is the explanation for the Black community. There have been no continuing replenishment of immigrants to charge the enthusiasm for achievement as there has been among the other races.

I don’t know. I am just grabbing at straws and getting no answers. I just know that I hurt so when I see the numbers of Black young men in prisons. Then I see the great numbers of Black young men in the military who are really superb human beings! I see so many Black politicians who are just plain thieves. Not that there aren’t as many White politicians who are criminals too, but not in the same proportions to population. Why? And then I have had the best Black doctors and nurses and neighbors and friends.

Again I am mumbling along. Sorry. BB

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