Friday, August 17, 2007

Selective Service

Remember sometime ago when there was a push to allow a conscience clause for those working in pharmacies to not sell or handle transactions involving abortificients (i.e. the abortion pill). The idea was a pharmacist who objects to the pills due to religious belief (or other conviction) would be protected from losing their job in case they refused to participate in such transactions.

I oppose abortion but oppose such protections. Why? Religious conviction should not be a cheap thing and such laws cheapen the conviction. If a person truly opposed such practices then the best solution is to find another line of work or an employer more accommodating rather than forcing the employer (by point of gun) to go against their convictions.

Here is a case in point why we do not want to let the government protect employees not doing their jobs. Sooner or later such protections will be applied to employees who object to t-shirts:
In the editorial, we learn that a Maryland student recently was denied service by a check-out clerk at a food collective in the student union because the clerk disagreed with the message on her shirt. The shirt proclaimed "I Stand For Israel." Because her speech was "offensive," i.e. it offended the Israel-hating clerk, the student ended up apologizing to the clerk and counting herself lucky that the store provided a different clerk to ring up her sale. Oh, and the student proved the sincerity of her apology by offering the clerk a chocolate cake.
Source: Power Line – A "teaching moment" at the University of Maryland

The government has no business in protecting employees who out of conviction refuse to do their job no matter if the conviction to not do the job arises out of religious conviction or moonbattery. In the case Power Line notes having the government step in would team the force of government up with the miscreant employee to suppress customer's freedom of speech. Now, if the employee and the employer said no one may express the sentiment sharp cheddar cheese is the best cheese in their store that is fine (after all, no one has the right to use another's property to advance causes opposed by the owner), but the government may not add force one way or the other to that prohibition (remember government forced speech is not any freer than government suppressed speech).