(NaturalNews) Public servants refusing to marry same-sex couples are one thing, but suing a business because the owners won’t sell their services to you is another thing altogether.
If you’re gay or lesbian – or transgender, or multiple gender, or non-gender, or whatever – you can always find a friendly federal judge who agrees that your “rights” were violated when said business owner made what used to be a First Amendment “freedom of association” choice and just said “no” when it came to doing business with you.
What if you’re a conservative Christian who is attempting to stand up for the unborn using that same First Amendment right to speak out freely and loudly for the most vulnerable among us who don’t have presidents or attorneys general or high-profile business leaders and politicians speaking for them? Can a business refuse to do sell those Americans goods and services based solely on the beliefs and opinions of said Americans?
Apparently they can, if the business in question is Office Depot and its managers are discriminatory hypocrites who would most likely wail in outrage if a Christian business owner made the same choice.
The Daily Caller reports that the office chain is standing by a decision not to print 500 anti-Planned Parenthood flyers because company officials have decided the flyers are “graphic” and contain “hate material” that persecutes those who support abortion, according to a company statement.
The site reported that Illinois resident Maria Goldstein, 42, requested the flyers August 20 but an employee at a local Office Depot refused to print them, citing corporate policy. Naturally, Goldstein says she is being discriminated against because of her religious beliefs and she has rightly retained legal counsel with the intent to pursue further action against the office chain.
Robert A. Amicone, an attorney representing Office Depot, said in a letter that the company’s refusal had nothing to do with Goldstein’s religious beliefs, but she says she’s not buying that excuse.
“When I tell people they’re shocked because this is America,” Goldstein told The Daily Caller. “Office Depot is trying to silence my freedom of speech and my freedom of religion.”
Goldstein said she wanted to hand the flyers out at her church. The flyers list facts from Planned Parenthood’s annual report and they also quote a prayer that calls for an end to the nation’s largest abortion provider.
Office Depot says the prayer is the problem.
The attorney’s letter says that certain language, such as “the killing of children in the womb” and “the grisly trade of body parts” as well as references to the “death camps in our midst”, has been deemed graphic hate speech by Office Depot’s arbitrary standards (although obviously it isn’t “hate” speech).
The height of intolerance
Further, the letter states, Office Depot’s policy “prohibits the copying of ‘graphic material,’ which can include descriptions of dead or dismembered bodies.” Company policy further “prohibits the copying of ‘hate material’ that advocates for the persecution of groups of people, regardless of the reason.”
As you can see, much of what is labeled “graphic” and “hateful” is based solely on company officials’ subjective points of view.
“To be clear, Office Depot’s position is that the above-quoted language falls within the definition of ‘graphic material’ and/or ‘hate material,’ making the refusal to print the flyer appropriate,” the attorney wrote.
Goldstein has convinced the religious liberty organization the Thomas More Society to take her case. An attorney for the organization said a legal complaint would most likely be filed if Office Depot continues to refuse to print Goldstein’s flyers.
“This seems crazy,” Tom Olp of the Thomas More Society told The Daily Caller. “To say that a prayer that calls for conversion and understanding and enlightenment is persecution, to call that persecution to me is the height of intolerance.”