Discimination, Civil Rights, Religious Freedom…

Politically speaking, I have always been drawn to Libertarianism. There are shortcomings, of course, like in any “System of this World,” including my belief that the common good needs to be given a far greater emphasis within Libertarian thought than many Libertarians I know tend to give it. Perhaps, however, if greater attention is given to the common good in opposition to individualism then it might cease to be truly “Libertarian.”
Anyway, I’m linking to A Stitch in Haste post entited, “On Religious Bigots’ New-Found (Faux) Libertarianism,” a blog-post of a self-described Libertarian about the Religious Rights’ campaign to oppose any type of legal consideration for the civil rights of gays because they claim that equal protection or anti-discrimination protection of homosexuals as a minority class would conflict with their right of free exercise of religion (believing that homosexuality is sin and should be opposed at all cost for the sake of the moral health of homosexuals and society in general).
A portion of their argument revolves around the perceived religious right that Christians who oppose homosexuality can deny their economic services or products to homosexuals because providing such things to homosexuals conflicts with their religious belief. For example, a Christian doctor that believes homosexuality is a sin should be able to refuse to artificially inseminate a lesbian couple or a Christian owned camp-ground should be able to say, “No,” to a gay couple that wants to use the pavilion to get married.
To be honest, I think they should have that right, regardless of whether I agree or disagree with the outcome, despite that fact that I might be discriminated against. And the Libertarian blogger seems to agree – to a degree, I suspect.
Yet, and here is the kicker, as the blogger suggests, the Religious Right is not willing to be consistent with their arguments or positions (shocker, I know!). The reality is, and most people get this, they only want freedom for themselves and their positions. They only want to discriminate against – homosexuals! When the same logic is used against other minority groups, such as blacks or Jews or the handicapped, they would absolutely deny a religious right to discriminate, but for homosexuals they hypocritically demand such a right. Their arguments are not based on logically consistent and rational precepts, but only on their right to discriminate against homosexuals. The author writes:

If the religious bigots really want to invoke libertarian arguments to legitimize their bigotry, then they better be prepared to be judged by real libertarians about the entire spectrum of libertarian issues — including separation of church and state.

As I just wrote, I think there is the possibility for provision for people to not provide services to others for whatever reason. I know that is not politically correct, and perhaps for reasons of the common good it is wrong of me. Yet…
The thing is, if groups of people want to make the argument that they have a right to discriminate against others (for religious or any other reason), then they cannot turn around and scream bloody-murder when they find someone or other groups that discriminates against them – which is exactly what the Religious Right is doing.
If they want to discriminate, then they must be willing to suffer the consequences (which they aren’t) and be willing to be discriminated against (which they aren’t). You can’t have it both ways – you can’t demand the right to discriminate and expect no one to discriminate against you! If I declare my believe that there is an aspect of civil liberty is to either give or deny to others my services or products, then I have to be willing to acknowledge that others have the exact same right to deny me their services or products. The question is whether I’m willing to face such discrimination. Of course, I’ve encountered too many “liberals” who declare no such right to discriminate even as they so obviously (and blindly) discriminate against those with whom they disagree.
Hypocrisy abounds in America, and regretfully within Christianity (nothing new, anywhere, I know). It is one reason why so many people look upon the Church with such disdain or indifference. We are our own worst enemies.