Winter Soldier v Captain America

Imagine that I, a Catholic, walked into a Muslim bakery and asked the man behind the counter to make a wedding cake for me that said, “Jesus is Lord.” Does the Muslim man have the right to deny me service? It’s a good bet that countless Disney and Marvel employees would say yes.

Imagine that I, a Catholic, owned a bakery and a Muslim man walked in and asked for a cake that said, “Allahu Akbar! Happy Birthday. I’m glad you’re not kafir!” Do I have a right to deny him service? It’s a good bet that many, many Disney and Marvel employees would say yes.

Imagine some jerk knowingly walked into a gay man’s bakery and asked for a cake that referenced Romans 1:27 — “Men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error.” Would the gay man have the right to deny the jerk service? The answer should be self-evident.

Why then is it so hard for Disney and Marvel to understand that a religious man has every right to deny a gay man a wedding cake if it conflicts with his spiritual convictions?

Fortune magazine reported earlier today:

Walt Disney, along with subsidiary Marvel Studios, announced plans on Wednesday to boycott filming future movie projects in the state of Georgia should Governor Nathan Deal sign the bill. Opponents of the bill, which passed Georgia’s state legislature last week after facing significant opposition from a faction of lawmakers, claim it would allow a range of faith-based organizations to openly discriminate against the LGBT community.

In a statement provided to the press, a Disney spokesperson said: “Disney and Marvel are inclusive companies, and although we have had great experiences filming in Georgia, we will plan to take our business elsewhere should any legislation allowing discriminatory practices be signed into state law.”

I have said on this very blog that I would make cakes for anyone if I owned “Dough Ernst’s Bakery” — even a wedding cake for a gay couple. I would not, however, hold it against the baker across town if he said doing so would be a violation of his faith. It seems downright bizarre that Disney and Marvel are doing their own part to further chip away at religious freedom in the United States.

Georgia’s Gov. Nathan Deal has until May 3 to decide whether or not he will sign the Free Exercise Protection Act, which was passed by the state legislature this week. In the meantime, millions of men like Marvel writer Dan Slott — whose understanding of most public policy issues boils down to “Me like: Good. Me no like: Bad.” — will be putting pressure on him to not sign the bill.

DS religious liberty tweet

One should note that Dan Slott merely re-tweeted Variety’s article on the issue instead of telling Christians to go to “Christ-Land” like he did in 2014 after a U.S. Supreme Court ruling he didn’t like. Bravo! Perhaps he knows that yours truly would be ready to expose his own bigotry (inadvertent or not, you be the judge) once again.

Dan Slott Christians

Here is what I said July 1, 2014:

Question for Dan Slott: If I just had a beef with a few Jews over a religious issue with political implications, and I told them to go to “Jew-land,” then how would you respond? How would my employer respond? That’s right — you’d go ballistic. And then my employer would fire me. But you get to tell a bunch of Christians to go to “Christ-land” without consequences. Hypocrite.

Do women have the right to form organizations that only cater to women? Do men have the right to form organizations that only cater to men? Do gay people have the right to form organizations that only cater to gay people? Do Christian organizations have the right to form organizations that only cater to Christians?

The answer is yes — even if the questions are re-worded in terms of the right of every group mentioned to discriminate against individuals outside the group.

A free society respects the fact that people in the private sector have the right to assemble as they see fit. An Orwellian nightmare is a place where law enforcement officials use limited time and resources to force bakers to make cakes against their will.

 

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About the Author Douglas Ernst

I'm a former Army guy who believes success comes through hard work, honesty, optimism, and perseverance. I believe seeing yourself as a victim creates a self-fulfilling prophecy. I believe in God. I'm a USC Trojan with an MA in Political Science from American University.

4 comments

  1. Well said. Do we have the right to refuse service at our private business if we have a sign up that says, “no shirt, no shoes, no service?” How about wet suits and flippers? Don’t laugh, that’s a real thing around here, divers who get hungry and don’t bother to change. It seems to me as if a private business is an extension of our home, our labors, and we do have the right to refuse service to anyone. That is what personal liberty is all about.

    1. “It seems to me as if a private business is an extension of our home, our labors, and we do have the right to refuse service to anyone. That is what personal liberty is all about.”

      Exactly. All businesses discriminate based on their target audience, what they want their “brand” to represent, etc. BET, or Black Entertainment Television, is obviously geared towards a black audience. Do they “discriminate” in their hiring practices? My guess is they aren’t trying to be more “diverse” in their white and asian hires. Fine. That’s their right.

      It just annoys me that a small group of people have deemed themselves the arbiters what kinds of discrimination are “okay” (or even encouraged) and what kinds of discrimination demand, say, the Ceremonial Baked Goods Police.

  2. Hey, why is Marvel in Georgia anyway? To pay lower taxes when doing business? B-b-b-b-but … shouldn’t a big wealthy company like Marvel pay its fair share??

    Ahh, hypocrisy.

    1. Hey, why is Marvel in Georgia anyway? To pay lower taxes when doing business? B-b-b-b-but … shouldn’t a big wealthy company like Marvel pay its fair share??

      I have a liberal friend who works in Hollywood and she was complaining a few years ago about how many jobs were being lost because of lower taxes in other states, etc. Basic economics still doesn’t sink in — even when it hits them in their own wallet!

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