=The Politics of discrimination... (a brief discussion starter in light of the 'untill love is equal' movement. =

The politics of discrimination.

Recently I noticed that multiple people on social media had posted a red equal sign as their profile picture. With a few brief captions I assumed I knew what this was a stance for but decided that I would like to look further into its meaning and what the impetus was for the movement.

It seems that in 2011 there was a vote in Holland, MI by some elected officials to not add an ‘anti-discrimination’ definition/law which would prevent the discrimination of same-sex couples and homosexuals. (i.e. someone could not be fired because of their sexual orientation) This vote failed to gain support by one vote. This resulted in a movement known as the ‘until love is equal’ movement.

I have always been interested in the social/psychological/political realm of life which drives me to start a brief dialogue about this incident and some underlying themes which I see present (which can be further expanded to other topics in today’s culture).

So amid the numberless topics which exist today it seems that some things have become politically incorrect to take a stand on. So I’ll just dive in and watch the dialogue that ensues. I will not, however, be adding my thoughts and opinions on the matter. In particular pay attention to the question at the end of this brief writing.

One other such event was the Chick-Fil-a controversy in 2011. If you are unfamiliar with this event, it ensued after Dan Cathy made public comments on his beliefs regarding marriage alongside his personal religious beliefs.

I often think about the variety of role reversals which have taken place in society. Some are obviously apparent while some may seem sort of a stretch.

-The transition from unequal rights due to color (racism) to a society which has minority scholarships which exclude ‘the majority’ people of color.

-The formation of organizations which are expressly for the use of the minority at the exclusion of the majority.

-From discrimination of those with mental/physical disabilities to laws which advocate for equal treatment and employment etc.

-From a nation which was primarily Euro-Christian/Catholic to a multi-religious nation.

-From a male dominated society to one of woman’s suffrage and equal rights.

There are too many to list. What drives these changes? What are the foreseen and unforeseen consequences of change? (Consequences meaning results not negative results.)

So why is there a backlash against those whose beliefs are not in line with what is politically correct? It’s difficult to say.

Why is it politically incorrect for a business owner such as Dan Cathy to state that he believes in a biblical-hetero sexual marriage and to support the organizations which promote and strive for that value/belief? Why is he then labeled as one who demonstrates hate crimes? Does he not have the right to utilize the first amendment?

Yet, it is not politically incorrect for politicians to have pictures of their genitalia (Anthony Weiner) on twitter or for politicians (Arnold S.) to have affairs.

Who gets to decided what is ok and what is unacceptable?

Why can one person say 'no this is not acceptable' but another person says 'this is acceptable'?

In the case of Dan Cathy some sponsors pulled their support from Chick-Fil-A while others stated they had a contract and Mr. Cathy can express his beliefs.

So…the commentary that I am looking for is not regarding the right or wrong of discrimination ‘based on sexual orientation’ (while it is very much a part of this dialogue) but the discrimination of ‘free speech and religious beliefs’.

Why does everyone get so huffed up when someone says something that they don’t agree with? Why do people feel the need to homogenize others beliefs in line with their own?

Are there  social-political levels at play when public comments are made?

Are there conflicts of ‘power’ (by power I mean people in a place of influence having the power to sway or influence the thoughts of others {think psychology and social issues})?

Has there been a role reversal which has placed those with traditional values on the politically incorrect side?

Do their rights need to be protected as much as those who are on the PC side?

A few things are certain in today’s society:

*If you have an opinion about social political issues there will always be someone who disagrees and looks to get you ostracized for your views.

*If you have a social political view which is not politically correct it will affect the relationships you have. (Professional and personal.)

(This is the reason why my beliefs on the examples are not listed.)

Questions for consideration:

Where is the place for Values and Beliefs in shaping/influencing our government and communities? (Everyone has a worldview.)

At what point does someone expressing/stating their beliefs/values become an act of hate? (Which is such an overused term. When does it begin to inflict harm on others, beyond someone simply feeling ‘different’?)

At what point does limiting free speech/religion become an act of discrimination? (Same as above.)

What is the balancing/tipping point?

I look forward to any and all dialogue.