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Apple Politics

Apple Urges Arizona Governor To Veto Anti-Gay Legislation 917

Posted by Soulskill
from the getting-involved dept.
Hugh Pickens DOT Com writes "According to NBC, Apple has confirmed that it urged Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer to veto a bill that would allow business owners with strongly held religious beliefs to deny service to gays and lesbians. Last November Tim Cook announced that Apple was building a sapphire glass plant in Mesa, AZ, that would bring 2,000 new jobs to the state. 'Apple is indisputably one of the world's most innovative companies and I'm thrilled to welcome them to Arizona,' said Gov. Brewer at the time. 'Apple will have an incredibly positive economic impact for Arizona and its decision to locate here speaks volumes about the friendly, pro-business climate we have been creating these past four years.' According to Philip Elmer-DeWitt, it sounds like Tim Cook may be having second thoughts about how 'friendly' and 'pro-business' the climate in Arizona really is."
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Apple Urges Arizona Governor To Veto Anti-Gay Legislation

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  • First blacks, (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Threni (635302) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @07:24PM (#46340587)

    now gays. Can't Americans just stop acting like utter fucking cunts for a few moments and work on their hatred? I'm guessing it's religious in nature; after all, religious texts are full of specious, homophobic nonsense. Thank fuck that shit is on the way out.

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Psychopath (18031) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @07:28PM (#46340609) Homepage

    I imagine a gay CEO isn't too enthused about doing business with a state that thinks it's ok to refuse to do business with someone because they're gay. It's a two-way street, Arizona.

  • by khasim (1285) <brandioch.conner@gmail.com> on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @07:32PM (#46340647)

    No. It would be similar to allowing restaurants to refuse to serve black customers.

    This is not about business. It is about the personal beliefs and prejudices of the person owning that business. Those beliefs are not the same as business.

  • by Jharish (101858) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @07:33PM (#46340659)

    I'm all for religious freedom, but institutionalizing the hatred of religious zealots who tend to ruin religion for everyone else seems a very inhuman thing to do.

    Next they can pass laws saying that religious freedom can also include suicide bombing.

  • by MightyMartian (840721) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @07:39PM (#46340719) Journal

    Let me get this straight. Because China does bad things, Arizona a free pass?

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:5, Insightful)

    by cas2000 (148703) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @07:40PM (#46340735)

    but I think businesses should have the freedom to refuse service.

    why, exactly, should they have that right? it's fair enough for a business to exclude particular individuals who have caused problems in the past (e.g. shoplifiting or being an annoying PITA), but to exclude people simply because they are a member of a particular group ("women", "gays", "blacks", "teenagers", whatever) - or *appear* to be a member of such a group - is discrimination....and that's definitely unethical and almost certainly illegal.

    On the other hand, I think this law may open the door to "no hispanics or negroes allowed" signs going up, because someone could claim its their religious belief...

    that door is already wide open - "no gays" is no different to "no blacks". it's the same fucking thing.

  • by ShanghaiBill (739463) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @07:43PM (#46340751)

    The difference is that Apple has leverage in Arizona. The governor is on the fence, and hasn't decided whether she will sign or veto it. So a nudge from Apple may make a difference. In China, Apple has no influence whatsoever on government policy. American corporations are not going to "fix" China. That is up to the Chinese people.

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Psychopath (18031) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @07:49PM (#46340829) Homepage

    People have the right to be racist. They also have the right to say & publish racist speech, etc.

    I have mixed feelings. I know that the religious nuts are pushing this because of gay hatred, but I think businesses should have the freedom to refuse service. The public is welcome to boycott and post their negative opinion about the business.

    On the other hand, I think this law may open the door to "no hispanics or negroes allowed" signs going up, because someone could claim its their religious belief...

    Well, your last sentence was correct. Some Christians (I'm looking at you, Southern Baptists) used to preach that being black was the Mark of Cain and used it to justify first slavery and then racism. To purposefully legalize this behavior is stupidity of the first order. As the law is written, a business in Arizona could use the Mark of Cain argument to refuse to do business with blacks.

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @07:50PM (#46340841)

    but to exclude people simply because they are a member of a particular group ("women", "gays", "blacks", "teenagers", whatever) - or *appear* to be a member of such a group - is discrimination....and that's definitely unethical and almost certainly illegal.

    Unless that particular group happens to be "men".

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Jane Q. Public (1010737) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @07:56PM (#46340909)
    Different question: is it okay for the state to tell someone who they must do business with?

    Completely leaving aside sexual orientation. Or not. Take your pick of prejudices. Can the state tell someone they must not refuse to do business with brunettes? Or people with freckles?

    I did not oppose a Federal gay marriage law out of hate for gays. I opposed it because marriage is none of the Federal government's f*ing business.

    Granted, this is not Federal but State. But that other question still remains: is it okay for the State to tell someone they can't do business with someone they don't like?
  • by ebno-10db (1459097) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @07:57PM (#46340919)

    This really is dangerous, as religion should be contained and eliminated from society.

    Are you familiar with the word "irony"?

  • by gIobaljustin (3526197) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @08:07PM (#46341015) Homepage

    Religion doesn't seem to be doing a very good job of keeping people from doing Bad Things, so I somewhat doubt what you're saying.

    but it's the fear of Hell that can keep a sociopath in line.

    Where is your evidence of this?

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:5, Insightful)

    by stonecypher (118140) <{moc.liamg} {ta} {rehpycenots}> on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @08:14PM (#46341087) Homepage Journal

    Did it ever occur to you that this might be more complicated than it seems from the outside, and that the politics going on here might not actually reflect the bulk of the population?

    Would you like to tell us what country you're in, so that we can share with you how we feel about your country's choices?

    The modern homosexual rights movement started in the United States, and has derived the vast bulk of its force from the United States. The United States has the first gay rights group, the first gay bookstore, the first gay bar, the first gay political group, the first gay autobiography in modern times, the first magazine openly for gays and about gay culture; we invented and performed the first sex reassignment (Sweden was the first to make that legal, but that's because it was never illegal here; we performed the first one seven years before anyone else made it legal;) we were the first to successfully fight discharge over orientation, though far from the first to allow gays in the military directly; we were the first modern Western country to have a gay leader at the senator level, though we have not yet hit the presidential level and Iceland has; if you remove France, who got it in the late 1700s, we were the first Western country to eliminate sodomy laws; we had the first gay kiss on a major magazine cover (probably first at all, but who can exhaustively search minor magazines?,) we started the transsexual rights movement, the first officially sanctioned university group for gay advocacy, we invented pride parades and hold them everywhere; we created gay as a protected class for discrimination, also trans, and we'll probably be the first to poly; we had the first gay ordained minister; we invented the rainbow flag (sorry, I wish it was less ugly) and thereby probably the first major pride symbol (but I can't exclude so maybe there's something earlier?,) we started the Gay Games, we missed the first statuory discrimination ban by months, we had the first city and first territory (state, thank you) to extend marriage benefits to gay partners, we came to terms with AIDS way ahead of the pack, we did gay adoption first, etc.

    Are you sure Americans are anti-gay, and not just a country of a third of a billion people who have a handful of bad apples, a media system faking controversy to generate viewership, a slashdot reader who's forgotten what percentage of the internet is trolling, and a parochial political system pandering to margins to get voted in?

    The phrase "utter fucking cunts" suggests the UK, and to look at Wikipedia's gay rights map, it looks like the US and the UK are world leaders, and that the US is ahead of the UK.

    Looks like England is ahead of the US, but hey, California's ahead of England, and California is both larger than and nearly as populous as Britain, so I think that's the actual natural comparison. You guys don't have national gay marriage observation yet. We *do*. (We don't have national performance yet, but that's no big deal; just take a $200 trip to California. It's still binding in every hateful corner of the South. The UK has no such privilege.) North America is the only continent where this is wall to wall legally supported; Eastern Europe misses it by four countries (no illegal but four no recognition,) and South America by six (five no recognition, one illegal.)

    Africa has only one country where gay marriage is legal, and Asia has only one (and shockingly it's not Japan) plus six more where it's not recognized.

    Uganda just recently worsened their practice to making homosexuality a capital offense. Cameroon, Iran, Nigeria, and Ethiopia all carry the death penalty (these are all nations in the Britain population range.)

    The United States is vascillating over whether it's legal for a private business to choose to ask someone to leave over their preference. And we're so shocked by this that there's a national uproar.

    We've had several states where this has been legal for decades, and our states are often the size of what you think of as small countries.

    So slice it and dice it however you want, but I think the US is actually doing quite well with regards to homosexuality law, thanks.

    Please don't blame me and my countryfolk for the things that happen on TV.

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:5, Insightful)

    by geekoid (135745) <dadinportland AT yahoo DOT com> on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @08:15PM (#46341097) Homepage Journal

    "I opposed it because marriage is none of the Federal government's f*ing business. "
    but it is. It shouldn't be, but it is.There are thousands of federal rules and laws with the word married in them. So denying gay marriage is denying those right.
    That's why I'm for it. Would I rather the government got rid of those laws? yes.

    Then there are thousand of uses of the word married in insurance, contract, housing, and so on.

    Opposing the laws in this context is bigotry and depriving people of rights. You may not hate people who are gay, but you are acting just like people who do.

    "is it okay for the state to tell someone who they must do business with? "
    Yes. When a group is in a position they can't get services, and goods.
    There are many more specific and clear reason written by people smarter than me*.

    *I know , right?

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:5, Insightful)

    by rearden (304396) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @08:21PM (#46341135) Homepage
    I would not call him "openly" gay. He is unmarried. He has been seen to be in romantic situations with men. He has coyly refused to respond to questions of his sexuality. He is openly supportive of gay rights, and gay groups. People have referred to him as gay and he does not deny it.

    Not sure that is openly gay, but it is certainly not actively not gay I guess.

    I don't go around telling people I am gay, but then again when I am asked I do say "I do have a Husband" and smile. So I take calling him "openly" gay with a grain of salt.

    That is unless he has said something that I am not familiar with, the closest was that discrimination statement at Auburn University.
  • Re:First blacks, (Score:4, Insightful)

    by FooAtWFU (699187) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @08:32PM (#46341225) Homepage
    I think it's not as simple as that and we're being confused by the proximate issue. I know that a typical case is "is it okay for a business run by some fundamentalist Christians allowed to refuse service to bake cakes or provide flower arrangements a gay wedding." Let's use different groups here to make the issues clearer. Is it okay for an event-planning business run by a Buddhist to refuse service to plan a KKK rally? To refuse to bake a cake that says [insert offensive thing a KKK member might want on a cake here]? How about just to refuse to provide services to a KKK member? Refuse to provide sale of goods?

    If the answer is "no" to the Christian baker's refusals and "yes" to the KKK rally refusal, what are the differences between these hypothetical situations? If relevant, what are the differences between the rally and the general sale of goods? What are the differences between these hypothetical situations and the law(s) being proposed?

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Jane Q. Public (1010737) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @08:41PM (#46341317)

    "but it is. It shouldn't be, but it is."

    No, it isn't. The Federal government has no Constitutional authority to tell you who you can marry and who you cannot. The "Defense of Marriage Act" was blatantly unconstitutional. It doesn't matter whether it's right or wrong. It was a law without lawful authority. The neighborhood kid has just as much lawful authority to decide who marries whom as the Federal government did. That is to say: none.

    "There are thousands of federal rules and laws with the word married in them."

    Means nothing. Even the Supreme Court would say (because they DID, on several occasions): the fact that laws were passed does not make them Constitutional.

    "Opposing the laws in this context is bigotry and depriving people of rights."

    NO, it isn't, and that's an extremely offensive thing to say. I oppose the laws because they are ILLEGAL. I don't have to be a bigot to oppose laws that aren't legal in the first place. Fuck you very much.

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:5, Insightful)

    by TsuruchiBrian (2731979) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @08:43PM (#46341323)

    It is possible to believe in free association without thinking taxes are theft.

    Businesses that only let in people with proper attire and enough money are also discriminating, just based on different criteria.

    You are free to draw the line between public and private where you have, but I don't see any good reason to draw it there, unless your only concern is preventing blatant discrimination.

    The real question is whether you think a restaurant should have the right to discriminate against gays, black people, jews, swedes, poor people, poorly dressed people, etc. I think they should. It's not because I think discrimination is ok. I just think freedom is more important than masking discrimination. It is the same reason I support the freedom to say racist, anti-gay, anti-poor, etc things. I believe freedom of speech is more important than not hearing bigoted speech.

    Also, I would rather know the truth about how people feel rather than forcing them to behave a certain way.

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @08:44PM (#46341331)

    Yes, you do have that choice. You also accept dealing with the consequences of that choice. Is it really in your own best interest to exercise that choice in all cases?

    You may not discriminate on employment laws (protected classes) but you do have the choice to not associate with certain demographics. The only way to do that in a legal and fair way is to close your business.

    You may refuse service for any reason. However, you might be forced to close your business as a possible consequence is the general public holding the opinion that you are an asshole. You may choose to carry products or provide services that cater to certain demographics but there will always be exceptions to those demographics and you will limit your market if you try this for reasons other than maximizing profits.

    The government didn't force you to make those choices. You may not turn around and force the government or the public to support your choices so you may stay in business. If you don't want the government to make choices for you then don't look to the government to protect you from the outcome of those choices.

    To use a more visceral example, you are free to go to certain neighborhoods and loudly insult the heritage of the predominant residents (be it German, Italian, African American, Chinese, Irish, Peruvian, Korean, whatever). If you do, you accept their reactions and the consequences.

    In civilized society, we often tolerate things we don't like we often hold our tongues. We do this for the greater good of overall peace and for our own self interest of wanting to avoid being on the receiving end during changes in public opinion. We the People use the government to resist certain things because of activities not the demographics of the actors. Yes, hold an opinion, but there is no reason to put on blinders or to move in lockstep.

    Though on a much slower pace, society sees bigotry the same way the internet sees censorship - as damage. Like the internet, society just routes around it. If someone chooses to suggest let alone vote for let alone sign a law like this, fine. It's not needed - businesses are already free to make their choice and deal with the consequences.

    CAPCHA: reasoner

  • by rearden (304396) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @08:45PM (#46341345) Homepage
    <quote><p>I see that, but someone else mentioned that this whole issue came up because of a bakery and a wedding cake. If businesses can't refuse service, does that baker have to put any decoration on a cake no matter how repulsive they might find it? Heck, someone could force a gay print shop to print religious fliers condemning homosexuality. Would that be okay?</p></quote>

    Yes and Yes. The cost of freedom of speech is that I must allow the person I consider to be a bigoted idiot speak (i.e.: Westboro Baptist Church) so that I may speak what I wish. The cost of ensuring that I have a hotel room, a full tank of gas, and a meal in a city I do not live in is that I must serve those I find distasteful and dislike.

    Its what is known as reasonable compromise. Something lacking from modern American politics, but is a pragmatic reality so we can have a functional society.
  • Re:First blacks, (Score:4, Insightful)

    by MattskEE (925706) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @09:00PM (#46341467)

    The word marriage is heavily entrenched in law and contract as a civil status. Religion may have used the term first (I don't actually know, nor do I care) but it's a legal word now and religious institutions should suck it up. It would probably even be expensive for the government to change the name of marriage to civil union.

    If religious institutions don't like sharing a word for marriage because gays are finally allowed to get married in a subset of states then religions should invent a new term which refers solely to their religions sacrament (maybe "religious union"? "no-gays-allowed union"?) because they are the ones who have a problem, not us.

    Religious people who oppose homosexuality are fleeing in vain from the march of history, because the march towards equal rights will not stop despite the loud but few voices against homosexuality. If religions can get on board we'll get equal rites too.

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @09:06PM (#46341513)

    " being a religious ceremony & institution"

    Excuse me, but WHOSE religious ceremony and institution
    Christians... only happened in the last 2014 years, and before that... ?
    Perhaps Muslims, Buddhist, Hindus, etc etc etc marriages are also not counted because they are not Christian ?

    Religion inserted itself into Marriage, not the other way around.
    Religion saw Marriage as a means of control and inserting their influence into the family.

    The Same biggots against Gay Marriage would have been against interracial marriage not that long ago.

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Fancia (710007) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @09:07PM (#46341525)
    Would you have supported the bakery if they denied the couple due to race?
  • Re:First blacks, (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Kohath (38547) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @09:12PM (#46341565)

    Not forcing people to make wedding cakes against their will is "hatred" now?

  • Re: First blacks, (Score:4, Insightful)

    by SvnLyrBrto (62138) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @09:16PM (#46341619)

    So what?

    You are confusing (probably deliberately) the difference between the baker (a person) and the bakery (a business). Even if the baker is the owner or operator of the bakery, they are two different legal entities, and for good reason. As a society, we routinely hold businesses to different, sometimes higher and sometimes lower, standards than we do individuals.

    The bakery, as a business, is for example almost certainly required to hold to standards of cleanliness and sanitation, and subject to inspections to verify same, that the baker is free to ignore at home. Do health codes and inspections infringe on the baker's personal right to be a slob if he wants? Of course not. They regulate a separate entity: the bakery... the business.

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Kohath (38547) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @09:19PM (#46341637)

    Government should force people to bake wedding cakes against their will because ... else someone of some special race will be sad? Why don't they just buy a wedding cake from someone who wants to sell them one?

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:5, Insightful)

    by cbhacking (979169) <been_out_cruisin ... OLo.com minus la> on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @09:19PM (#46341643) Homepage Journal

    Religion co-opted marriage and turned it into a religious thing millennia ago, but before that it was about as secular as things got. True, it was a kind of awful arrangement in a lot of the world, with the wife either effectively or literally being property of the husband (a man typically purchased his wife-to-be from her father), but most of the world also openly practiced slavery back then... Anyhow, it was a business arrangement, generally enforced by whatever secular law there was in that time and place, that essentially said
    A) I have a right to this woman
    B) I have a right to her children
    C) Those (male) children have a right to inherit from me.

    Obviously, I'm simplifying and combining a number of somewhat different systems, but it was no more a religious ceremony than setting sail in a ship was (i.e. you might ask the gods for blessings on the woman's fertility and childrens' health, just as you might ask for calm seas and favorable winds, or for strength and protection before going into battle). In places with a codified set of laws, marriages were reported to the government (actually, much as they are today). The question of who presided over them varies widely, and was indeed sometimes a priest or shaman (and sometimes was nobody but the relevant families or even just fathers), but it wasn't generally considered a religious institution until just a few thousand years ago (early human civilizations, and their belief systems and governments, go back much further than that).

    In any case, marriage in the US has always been a matter of secular law, at least at the federal level. You can get a religious ceremony performed if you want, but that is neither sufficient nor necessary to be considered married (my grandmother "married" her third "husband" in a religious but non-legal ceremony to assuage her guilt at "living in sin" without overly complicating her inheritance; the ceremony was lovely but had no secular recognition). The right to grant marriage licenses is owned by the states, and some states might hypothetically refuse to grant them if not approved by a member of some recognized religion or similar bullshit, but it is the state governments and not the religious institutions that decide who is married, and it is the state-granted marriage licenses that the federal government recognizes. That was the major aspect of the DOMA that was struck down last year: the idea that the federal government could refuse to recognize a state-issued marriage license just because the couple were of the same sex.

    Thus, aside from the terminology (which really is *not* inherently religious, despite what various clergy might have you believe) the secular benefits and protections are already tied to a secular institution.

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Kohath (38547) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @09:23PM (#46341691)

    "is it okay for the state to tell someone who they must do business with? "
    Yes. When a group is in a position they can't get services, and goods.

    Because the world will spin off its axis if the government doesn't force people to bake wedding cakes against their will? Instead of sending in the wedding cake police, how about just buy a wedding cake from someone who wants to make you a wedding cake?

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Kohath (38547) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @09:27PM (#46341727)

    No one "asked" for a public business license. The local government warlord sends armed men to wreck your shop and take you to prison if you don't bend a knee and pay for one of their business licenses.

  • by Darinbob (1142669) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @09:31PM (#46341763)

    Even if you eventually have naturally occuring atheist cultures that develop over time, they will also retain many of the negative aspects that come with a culture: bigotry, hatred, desire for power and control of society, etc.

    In fact you don't have to wait that long, many atheists are openly hostile to religious people of any sort, many will be openly hostile to one particular type of religion (such as whatever it was that their parents practiced). Ie, just look at posts here claiming anyone religious is automatically a stupid person. So if the atheist son comes home one day and tells the atheist parents "I want to marry my religious girlfriend", how many are going to be cool with that? I certainly know some people in that situation who'd start wondering where they went wrong in their parenting.

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Jason Levine (196982) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @09:46PM (#46341883)

    An answer from someone who is straight: You and I might think it's gross, but that's someone else's idea of a good time. Just like I might love eating certain foods that others find gross or I might enjoy reading some kinds of books that others would find tedious. People have different interests and enjoy different activities. To me, the idea of sleeping with a man sounds gross, but I know that some men think the exact same thing about sleeping with a woman. To each his own.

    Getting back on topic: I might think that the act itself is "gross" (as in "I wouldn't want to do that") but as long as nobody is forcing me to watch or take part in said activities (and last time I checked nobody is), other people engaging in activities I don't myself enjoy doesn't affect me at all. Not doing business with someone just because they partake in an activity that you personally don't like is idiotic. Come to think of it, nobody in the LGBT community is forcing me to watch/partake in sexual acts that I don't enjoy, but plenty of people in the religious fundamentalist community are trying to force their religion on me. Who's the bigger threat to freedom here?

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:5, Insightful)

    by rearden (304396) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @09:50PM (#46341907) Homepage
    There are physical reasons why it can be pleasurable for many men (see link at end). The prostrate being the biggest one. There are some gay men who do not have anal sex at all. I know of two like that. It just does not appeal to them. Some only prefer being the "giving partner" often referred to as the top. Other prefer to be only the "receptive partner" often referred to as the bottom.

    To understand being gay you have to realize its an attraction/ feeling not a particular act (sexual or otherwise). In a purely sexual act, devoid of emotions, no matter the sexes involved the orgasm is the goal and the pleasure (excluding kinks and other ways to get endorphin's to keep things simple). When emotions are mixed in the intimacy of the act and the closeness to the partner is the attraction. Oral sex is pleasurable, but insertion is the closest form of mutual intimacy for most- gay or straight. So, since both male/female with penis/vagina and male/male penis/anus give pleasure to both parties and bring them closer for many it is preferred.

    So, no its not just a convenient or "second best" option. It is an equivalent sharing of feelings and intimacy. But just as some men or women don't do oral some gay men don't do anal. As to it being a predisposition... I would say it is as predisposed in gay men as vaginal sex is in straight men. Its mutually pleasurable for both parties so both are willing to participate.

    http://www.goodinbed.com/blogs/sex_doctors/2010/04/prostate-stimulation-and-male-sexual-pleasure/
  • Re:First blacks, (Score:5, Insightful)

    by rearden (304396) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @10:02PM (#46341995) Homepage
    Wedding cakes is an easy one.

    How about pharmacist in a town with only one pharmacy? Will you deny them their life saving/ needed medications?

    How about gas station on a lonely open Arizona highway with only one gas station for the next 100 miles? Will you strand them on the road?

    Hotel in a town with only one and the next nearest is 2 hours away? Will you send them away at midnight to drive overly tired to the next town or sleep in their car?

    Where do you draw the line? Only one employee? Only certain types of business? If you do that then you have watered down the argument that it is a violation of a religious freedom. Either it is, or is not. Either it is defensible in its entire application or it is not. Making it more nuanced does not make it better or more right, it just makes it more complicated and more likely to either be ignored or misapplied.
  • by rts008 (812749) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @10:03PM (#46342003) Journal

    Yeah, that's the problem with these 'religious freedom' discussions.

    All to often what they really want is the religious freedom for their religion only.

    What they fail to understand is in order to have religious freedom, you also have to have equal freedom from religion, or it is nothing more than outright discrimination by the majority religion; a theocracy in other words.

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:5, Insightful)

    by tburkhol (121842) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @10:06PM (#46342017)

    Why don't they just buy a wedding cake from someone who wants to sell them one?

    Because if you allow anyone to discriminate based on race or sexual preference, then you allow everyone to discriminate based on race or sexual preference. It may be a single bakery refusing to sell a cake to a single icky gay couple that started the fuss, but the the consequence of the law may make it difficult or impossible for any gay person to buy any product from any store. Or to force a two-tiered system of businesses where gays can only do business with a subset of "gay friendly" businesses (which, one imagines, would be boycotted by upstanding Christians).

    If you're in the business of making cakes, then make the damn cake. If you're in the business of being a religious busybody, then don't sell cakes.

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:4, Insightful)

    by dryeo (100693) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @10:15PM (#46342079)

    I thought the 14th amendment gave the federal government the power to stop the States from discriminating. Section one in particular,

    Section 1. All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

    Are you saying gay people should not get equal protection of laws?

    U.S. Supreme Court Justice Joseph P. Bradley commented in the Civil Rights Cases that “individual invasion of individual rights is not the subject-matter of the [14th] Amendment. It has a deeper and broader scope. It nullifies and makes void all state legislation, and state action of every kind, which impairs the privileges and immunities of citizens of the United States, or which injures them in life, liberty or property without due process of law, or which denies to any of them the equal protection of the laws.”

    Seems the Supreme Court says the 14th allows the Federal government to override State laws that remove equal protection under the law. The rights that go with marriage should be available to all adults and if a State attempts to remove those rights then it seems it would be the Federal governments duty to override those State laws.

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:4, Insightful)

    by stdarg (456557) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @10:16PM (#46342081)

    Who are you to define what is inconsequential to someone else?

    There's a sliding scale of how relevant a person's identity is to a business transaction.

    If I sell hammers in a hardware store, whether my customer is gay or black or whatever doesn't really affect me. I'm not really even interacting with them unless I'm the cashier, and generally the cashier doesn't make the rules.

    If I sell wedding cakes, and someone wants to pay me to make a wedding cake for a gay marriage, that's pretty close to paying me for political speech because I'm creating something to celebrate gay marriage in a way that a generic hammer does not.

    Then when you get really personal, it's quite obviously fine. If I'm a porn star, I don't have to participate in gay scenes just because someone wants me to. I don't have to have sex with people of a certain race. I don't have to not discriminate against people over 40. Porn is too personal, so discrimination is an inherent and obvious right.

    To me, someone who refuses to bake a cake celebrating gay marriage is well within their rights. It's personal enough that I think refusal to do business is protected. If a hammer store said "no gays" then that seems unfair, but on the other hand, does that actually happen in reality? How would the hammer store guy even tell? It's easy for the cake guy and the porn guy.

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Opportunist (166417) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @10:16PM (#46342085)

    The problem is that exactly by disallowing gays to marry the government does interfere: It's a service the government offers but refuses to offer to a subset of people. Yes, churches may or may not allow gays to marry, that's none of the state's business.

    But it's none of any churches business when two people want to get joined and have that join protected by the laws that protect such a union of two people. There is no sensible reason why these two people should be of different gender.

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:5, Insightful)

    by jd2112 (1535857) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @10:42PM (#46342253)

    I did not oppose a Federal gay marriage law out of hate for gays. I opposed it because marriage is none of the Federal government's f*ing business.

    Since marriage is none of the government's business then why should they be able to tell you who you cannot marry?

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:3, Insightful)

    by UnknowingFool (672806) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @10:42PM (#46342255)

    Different question: is it okay for the state to tell someone who they must do business with?

    Yes otherwise state may say it's okay not to business with African Americans, minorities, Catholic, Jews, Muslims, women, transgender, disabled or ANY other group a business wants to discriminate against?

    I did not oppose a Federal gay marriage law out of hate for gays. I opposed it because marriage is none of the Federal government's f*ing business.

    I see this as extremely hypocritical with the right where they are opposed to government intrusion into their lives except when they want the government to intrude into other peoples' lifestyles they personally disagree with.

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ChrisMaple (607946) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @11:04PM (#46342355)
    When the government is telling you who you must do business with, the government is, by definition, fascist.
  • Re:First blacks, (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Frobnicator (565869) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @11:12PM (#46342387) Journal

    The word marriage is heavily entrenched in law and contract as a civil status. Religion may have used the term first (I don't actually know, nor do I care) but it's a legal word now and religious institutions should suck it up. It would probably even be expensive for the government to change the name of marriage to civil union.

    Strongly disagree.

    By redefining marriage, in turn the effect is telling religions that they must redefine themselves. Are you really going to claim that all religions, many with histories extending back for millennia, must all redefine themselves? All the Jewish variants, the Christian and assorted protestant faiths, the Muslim believers, the native American nations with their beliefs, they must all redefine their religions for the convenience of the US government?

    Governments have decided to hang many benefits on the convenient hook of marriage. Up until recently this was generally accepted because most people got married. Today with so many unwed families, non-traditional arrangements (not just homosexual, but also open relationships or those with assorted plural relationships), the government is struggling to hook those benefits on to something else.

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:5, Insightful)

    by sycodon (149926) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @11:26PM (#46342471)

    Should a Black Photographer be forced to take pictures at a wedding of two outspoken White Supremacists? At a Klan rally?

    Should a Jewish deli owner be forced to cater an openly anti-Semitic Muslim...or an avowed Nazi?

    Should a Muslim waiter be forced to server pork ribs? Or, Jewish for that matter. How about a vegan?

    You have to be careful with all this stuff about people being forced to provide services to others. Everyone can support the public accommodations thing when it's applied to race or religion. But when you start in on all these other things, you are opening a can of worms that you may not want to be opened. It cuts both ways.

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:4, Insightful)

    by asylumx (881307) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @11:29PM (#46342485)
    Why the hell did this get marked insightful? This is a stupid cherry-picked example that is clearly trying to make a reasonable concern look absurd. That is NOT insightful.
  • Re:First blacks, (Score:5, Insightful)

    by sribe (304414) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @11:41PM (#46342549)

    Which is, in itself, a beautiful thing. Back when Steve Jobs first hired him, it was big news in the business rags, about the first openly gay CxO of a Fortune Whatever corporation. Nowadays, nobody talks about it, because almost nobody cares, and lots of younger folks don't even know it. Which is exactly as it should be.

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Frobnicator (565869) on Tuesday February 25, 2014 @11:59PM (#46342623) Journal

    Come to think of it, nobody in the LGBT community is forcing me to watch/partake in sexual acts that I don't enjoy, but plenty of people in the religious fundamentalist community are trying to force their religion on me. Who's the bigger threat to freedom here?

    That is exactly the purpose of the law.

    People at their wedding, or civil union, or reception, or whatever you want to call it, ARE being forced in to it.

    Several state courts have issued rulings that compel the photographer, the caterer, the musicians, the church or reception hall and their staff, and all the others at the event to either accept and attend the event or face civil discrimination lawsuits.

    Most of these businesses have been able to pick and choose in the past. Churches could limit events to traditional weddings and reject things like dom/sub 'bondings', civil union receptions (even when they aren't legally weddings), plural marriage additions, and the rest. But now in some states they are compelled to take them all. Their banners, logos, signs, and name are being associated with something contrary to their religious standards. This is not right.

    Similarly photographers being compelled to attend the full range of events because they previously took pictures at traditional weddings, now their name and reputation gets affiliated with something against their beliefs. Musicians who performed at traditional weddings are getting compelled to tie their names to events that may be against their beliefs.

    Like it or not, everything related to marriage ceremonies and their receptions are being forced into that agenda. Many are fighting back in courts on free speech, free religion, and free association grounds.

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:4, Insightful)

    by rearden (304396) on Wednesday February 26, 2014 @12:48AM (#46342813) Homepage
    The writer is making the point that the issue the CRA solved for African-Americans is the very problem this new law creates for gays. S/He is not being dishonest they are making a point that the issue of refusal of service back then is the same one being dealt with now. The best way to show how to solve a current problem, or to avoid it, is to look at how you solve a similar problem in the past- provided it was successful. I think most will agree that the CRA was a success.
  • Re:First blacks, (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Frobnicator (565869) on Wednesday February 26, 2014 @02:36AM (#46343239) Journal

    In that part I am in complete and total agreement, and always have been: Government has no part in marriage.

    Other nations have (quite successfully) attached the civil law aspects to a contract, leaving religious groups free to do whatever they want with marriage.

    Moving on...

    On the second issue of businesses dealing with marriage, that is a balancing act that is currently in a horrible condition. This specific law in Arizona is about COMPELLING businesses to accept customers. It stands in stark contrast to the Constitution and guarantees about free speech, free association, and free religion. The key point about the Arizona law is one of legal compulsion, which is a very big deal.

    In a post up above there is a list of businesses who are in lawsuits because they hold that non-traditional wedding events violate their Constitutionally-guaranteed rights. Compelling a business to act is an extreme thing to do, and should be VERY thoughtfully considered. When governments broadly compel action, allowing zero tolerance and zero exceptions, removing all rational thought from the process, it often results in amazingly horrible results.

    Should a business be COMPELLED to accept customers in a non-discriminatory way? For the venue, let's take racial discrimination first. If we look back a few decades when the organizations were in full swing, should the government COMPEL a venue to host a Black Panther rally and a KKK rally on the same day just because they have enough open rooms? You can imagine a riot breaking out in the lounge that management could easily avoid. Moving back to this Arizona law, today some states COMPEL businesses to accept non-traditional marriage events if they have room, and do not allow the business to consider other factors like safety of their guests, beliefs of other guests, or predominant religious views held within the organization.

    On to other business, should a photographer be COMPELLED to take pictures at a non-traditional wedding, not just homosexual, but perhaps also a Dom/Sub 'bonding' or a plural marriage adding a spouse? Should they be COMPELLED to create artistic photographs, watch and record the kissing and petting and other (usually light) sexual behavior at the events? Does the photographer lose their rights to free association, free speech and expression, and the religious freedom to not attend an event of a different faith?

    On another business, should a band be COMPELLED to attend one of these events just because they have performed at other events? Should they be COMPELLED to attend the venue, even if it takes place in a bar (for a band who doesn't drink for religious reasons), or takes place in a very smoky lounge (health concerns) or takes place in a church they dislike (compelled religious observance?) or for any other reason a facility contrary to their beliefs or associations?

    And the last business since it has become popular in this /. topic, should sex workers be COMPELLED to accept homosexual events and clients? Should the porn star who has maintained a straight career be compelled to engage in homosexual acts? After all, they're just a contractor like the musician, photographer, or venue. They are a small business of one, should they be COMPELLED to accept any client, gay or straight? Or on a racial level, should they be COMPELLED to have any race relations because it would be discriminatory? Should they be COMPELLED to have any legally-aged relation, denying them their choice because of age discrimination concerns?

    When you get into situations where government is COMPELLING a group to act, or when an organization or group like the gay community is trying to FORCE businesses to do something under the full authority of law, there really needs to be a lot of thought involved. This law says they are not compelled, and if it is in error, it is likely erring on the side of safety. If there is a choice between freedom or compulsion, I'd go with freedom.

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Kohath (38547) on Wednesday February 26, 2014 @03:08AM (#46343355)

    That's the reason for the law. Some woman in New Mexico was fined for refusing to be a wedding photographer for a lesbian wedding.

    http://www.deseretnews.com/art... [deseretnews.com]

    The law is to keep innocent people from being bullied by (or with in the case of lawsuits) the government for choosing who they do business with.

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Antique Geekmeister (740220) on Wednesday February 26, 2014 @06:59AM (#46344259)

    Actually, like being white, male, young, married, Christian, or born in the USA, it can certainly affect job performance. Being a member of the "power" ethnic or social jobs can certainly affect political power and perceived acceptability a social and political effect. But most relevant for job performance is the likelihood of being married, and having children, which also affect work availability and available weekly work hours. Then look at the number of business and political leaders who do _not_ have a spouse who takes care of their home and their children. And do _not_ be shocked that the possibility of dating, of or sexual interaction, effects the work place. And anytime there's a possible sexual interaction with a superior or a subordinate, it effects the work relationship.

    That said, I'm delighted that we're more accepting of different lifestyles than we were at the start of my career. Let's just not ignore the direct effects of marriage, and of children, on work performance because they remain quite profound. Schedule a major product release for Christmas, Valentine's Day, or for graduation day and see who can do the work if you think it's irrelevant.

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Sique (173459) on Wednesday February 26, 2014 @07:28AM (#46344405) Homepage
    That is a typical case of correlation, not a case of causation. People who perform good in a job often also have a stable private life, and for heterosexual people, in the most cases it means having a spouse and a family. Different cultural backgrounds interpret this correlation differently. You opt for "married men make better performers", just 50 years ago it was: "men with a steady job make good marriage material" or "first find a job, then find a spouse".

    Both interpretations have long traditions. In the Middle Ages, men without a regular profession were denied marriage general, based on the second interpretation. In St. Paul's letters, you find the characterization of a good bishop which includes having a wife and childen (until now, you can't become an christian-orthodox priest without being married), emphasizing the first interpretation.

    But all we really have is a correlation. People performing good at tasks with great responsibility tend to perform good at being the CxO of a company or having a stable family life.

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Sique (173459) on Wednesday February 26, 2014 @07:45AM (#46344495) Homepage
    Actually no. Your sexuality is what it is. Abuse, upbringing, morality, religiosity and everything connected to it are determining how you deal with your sexuality. But it doesn't change it. As an analogon: There are people who, are righthanded and those, who are lefthanded. Being wounded early in life at one hand doesn't change that (as everyone knows who was forced into righthandedness as a child).
  • Re:First blacks, (Score:3, Insightful)

    by AmiMoJo (196126) * <[ten.3dlrow] [ta] [ojom]> on Wednesday February 26, 2014 @08:10AM (#46344637) Homepage

    What possible grounds would a business have for choosing not to photograph a lesbian wedding, other than homophobia? Unless they were fully booked there is no reason to turn down income other than bigotry.

    In actual fact the studio explicitly stated that they would not do gay weddings. They hadn't even met the couple, and when the other partner called and didn't mention her sexual orientation they sent her a price list right away. Sorry, but this was not bullying or someone making an innocent choice not to do business with someone else, it was simply homophobia and businesses have no protection for that.

  • Re:First blacks, (Score:3, Insightful)

    by AmiMoJo (196126) * <[ten.3dlrow] [ta] [ojom]> on Wednesday February 26, 2014 @11:14AM (#46346573) Homepage

    They believe participating in it would be celebrating and giving approval of something they don't approve of.

    So, homophobia.

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