Considering the title of this post, you might be thinking that the what is about to be discussed is some type of intolerance in the work place to gays or black people. Not so:
The words “natural family,” “marriage” and “union of a man and a woman” can be punished as “hate speech” in government workplaces, according to a lawsuit that is being appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Briefs for Good News Employee Association vs. Hicks, which were filed June 5 with the nation’s highest court, lists D.C. school board President Robert C. Bobb as one of two plaintiffs. The case originated five years ago in Oakland, Calif., during his tenure there as city manager.
The dispute began in January 2003, when the two Oakland employees created a subgroup at their workplace called the “Good News Employee Association.” It was partly in response to a group of homosexual employees having formed their own group 10 months before and being given access to the city e-mail system. One e-mail, dated Oct. 11, 2002, invited city employees to participate in “National Coming-Out Day.”
When several employees asked whether such a posting was legitimate city business, they got an e-mail from City Council member Danny Wan, reminding them that a “celebration of the gay/lesbian culture and movement” was part of the city’s role to “celebrate diversity.”
In response, the Good News employees posted an introductory flier on the employee bulletin board Jan. 3.
It said: “Preserve Our Workplace With Integrity: Good News Employee Association is a forum for people of faith to express their views on the contemporary issues of the day.” It said it opposed “all views which seek to redefine the natural family and marriage,” which it defined as “a union of a man and a woman, according to California state law.”
Anyone who wanted to help preserve “integrity in the workplace” was invited to contact the two employees: Regina Rederford and Robin Christy.
A lesbian co-worker, Judith Jennings, spotted the flier and complained to the city attorney’s office that it made her feel “targeted” and “excluded,” according to a deposition. The flier was removed by a supervisor because it violated the city’s anti-discrimination rules.
A U.S. District Court for Northern California ruling said the words “natural family” and “marriage” had “anti-homosexual import.”
However, Miss Rederford was told she could announce the group’s presence on the city’s e-mail system if she removed “verbiage that could be offensive to gay people.”
In late February 2003, Joyce Hicks, a city deputy executive director and the other defendant in the suit, sent out a memo to city employees. It cited recent incidents where “fliers were placed in public view which contained statements of a homophobic nature” and warned employees they could be fired for posting such material.
Miss Rederford and Miss Christy sued the city, claiming their First Amendment rights had been violated. According to court documents, employees had posted bulletin announcements on everything from terrorist mastermind Osama bin Laden to local sporting events, yet those had not been removed.
Don Surber, who is a supporter of gay marriage, sees the complainer about the flier, and what the city did in response to it just another example of the fascism that is deeply embedded in modern day liberalism:
As a supporter of gay marriage, I see this as yet another example of the fascist nature of what passes for liberalism these days. Not all liberalism, just that zero-tolerance strain that makes the Rev. Jim Dobson look positively open-minded.
Administrators should take control of the workplace. The bulletin board belongs to the employer, even in an government workplace. But if you allow one politically charged missive, you have to allow them all.
The city of Oakland seems to be creating a workplace that is hostile to strait-laced Christians.
He makes a good point about the closed-minded nature of liberals who are supposedly ‘tolerant’ of differing viewpoints. We know it’s a total myth that liberals of any stripe, particularly the ‘minority’ liberals, are tolerant of viewpoints that don’t mesh with their own, but that’s not the image of liberals that the mainstream media (who are overwhelminginly liberal themselves) wants you to see.
In fact, some of the most intolerant people you’ll ever meet are part of ‘minority groups’ who have been empowered by the ‘victim’ label the MSM and the left (but I repeat myself) have bestowed on them – in both instances, for personal and political gain. They’re made to feel ‘threatened’ by the majority to the point that when they speak out – or more to the point, when they make questionable accusations – the ‘majority’ isn’t supposed to challenge them out of respect for their Absolute Moral Authority.
Undaunted challengers to these ‘victims’ are labelled as haters or homophobes or racists or bigots or [insert intolerance-based name here] for seeking to challenge Accepted ‘Truths.’ Kinda ironic, considering that challenging Accepted ‘Truths’ was a hallmark of the 60s left, which has re-emerged today, thanks in large part to the fact that so many 60s lefties are in power and in fact play starring roles – think Senators Clinton and Kerry, for starters. Now that some of America’s Accepted ‘Truths’ (like, for example, all Republicans and Christians supposedly hate gay people) fall in line with what many of the lefties from yesteryear and today want the average American to believe, it’s unacceptable and ‘politically incorrect’ to challenge them. This is done in an effort to shame critics into silence, so the Accepted ‘Truths’ can continue to prevail unquestioned, which keeps those perpetuating them the most in positions of power and/or empowerment.
It is attitudes like these which embolden intolerant ‘minorities’ like the lesbian metioned in the WaTimes piece who was so ‘offended’ by the family-based flier that she complained to the city about it. There is a certain empowerment feeling to being made to feel part of a ‘victim class’ where the whole world is supposedly against you, so much so that when you fight back against that world, sometimes you become that which you abhor. A classic example of this would be radical feminists, who once upon a time wanted you to believe that they desired ‘equal rights’ for women, but who in reality have advanced far beyond wanting ‘equal’ rights, and now strive to prove that women are actually ‘better’ than men.
And the beat goes on …