Monday, May 2, 2016

Episode 38: Giving the Devil Benefit of Law

We talk about one of my all-time favorite films: A Man for All Seasons, the imminent end of PJTV's Trifecta (one of our favorite things), gay weddings, religious freedom, the need for belief, and Taken.


  1. I don't think there is any "tension between the rights of" two people. If rights are perceived to conflict, then (a) at least one of the rights doesn't exist or (b) at least one right is being interpreted incorrectly. Carried further, a right that requires one to perform some act or give up something is not a right.
    If rights come from men (or govt), then they are not actually rights; they were given by men, can be changed by men, and can be taken by men (which is why Woodrow Wilson described rights as privileges). However, the notion of rights as defined in our national founding is that people are naturally imbued with individual rights (which protect rather than require). These rights, in this context, are given to us by God. It is axiomatic that God is perfect; therefore, rights are perfectly created and cannot be in conflict. If one has a right to observe one's religious beliefs, then that right cannot be put into conflict by someone else's right. The giveaway in this case is the requirement of the service provider to perform when in conflict with the purchaser's right. In such case, either the service provider's religious right - a supposedly protected right - doesn't exist, or the buyer's right doesn't exist - a supposed right to require servitude by another.

    1. You're correct - I used the word "right" loosely. I was seeking for the mot juste and settled for "right." Let's put it this way - one has a right to religious freedom, however, sometimes that religious freedom infringes on *another* person's religious freedom. If your religion requires you to kill people of another religion, then we have a problem. Now, in ordinary circumstances, I think the provider has a right *not* to sell what is rightfully theirs. There have to be provisos, right? I tend to think that under ordinary circumstances, the proprietor’s rights to refuse customers trump completely a customer’s wish to be served — racial discrimination which we have faced in this country was an extraordinary circumstance which caused so much trouble that there had to be unusual intervention. The situation with gay weddings is far too narrow to merit similar extraordinary measures.

  2. Sometimes, the Law is an ass.

  3. Taken is therapy for modern emasculated men for the price of movie ticket. And we don't even have to talk during the session--if fact that's preferred. It's a modern French take on those Charles Bronson vigilante films, with brilliantly choreographed violence. The Good Guy wins, the toilet is flushed. Fin. We feel less powerless for a few seconds afterward.

  4. Now Wallander running around South Africa trying to solve the disappearance of a aid worker is totally believable. Especially when he goes out alone whenever he can.

  5. I look forward to receiving a baked confection from you should I ever be fortunate enough to find a fellow who agrees to be my spouse. Stay tuned.

    Some good points on the law and religious freedom in THIS context. There are no perfect solutions, that’s for sure. While I would serve anyone in a restaurant or bakery that I would choose to open, I actually can think of some specific orders that I would not wish to fulfil. If purchased, I would bake 100 dozen cookies and 10 sheet cakes for a KKK rally but I would NOT want to stencil “God Hates _____” (fill in the blank with anything you can imagine) on them. I would tell the person who orders them that I am here to bake but the actual message is something I do not wish to have a part in. If that will be acceptable to you, we have a deal. If not, thank you, come again. I might put them in “unlabeled” boxes without “Slick’s Sweets” printed on them.


Warning: blogger sometimes eats comments - make sure you copy your message before you post.