My (Condensed) Conversation with the ACLU Girl

Downtown there have been several blue-shirted ACLU people, usually college age, taking donations to help protect “gay rights.”

This afternoon I was heading to my office to grab something when I ran across one of them who told me that some politicians were “trying to use law to discriminate and deprive people of their rights.  Like women’s reproductive rights, gay rights…” and some others that I can’t remember.

She said that, “These lawmakers are using law to enforce their morality and that’s wrong.”

“So you would say that laws shouldn’t enforce a particular moral view?” I asked.

“Right.  It shouldn’t be a factor.” She said.

“But aren’t you trying to force your moral viewpoint?”

Apparently no one had ever asked her this before.  She had brought up abortion, so I asked her about her views on that.

“I personally feel it’s not a positive thing.  But I shouldn’t force my view on others.” She explained.

“But,” I answered, “if pro-life people are right, and the unborn is a valuable human being, then shouldn’t you enforce your view?”

At this point she was visibly uncomfortable, even though my tone was friendly and non-combative.  She changed the subject by explaining that she was out there for “gay rights” not abortion.  She then explained that they were attempting to create legislation that would prohibit employers for firing people due to sexual orientation.  (I didn’t say this, but in this state employers can fire anyone at any time.  So the ACLU would be, if I’m understanding the law correctly, trying to created a special class of protected citizens while the rest of us can be let go for any reason.)

I asked if she thought organizations had the right to hire and retain people that shared their values.  She said they did.  So I asked if she thought religious organizations should be forced to hire or retain people that did not hold their views.  She hesitated, growing more uncomfortable and then said that the hoped someone wouldn’t work at an organziation that didn’t hold their values.  That didn’t answer my question of course, and those types of situations are in the news often, but I let it go.

After a few more minutes she began to hestiate and become more nervous, often apologizing for her nervousness and then said that she knew what she believed but wasn’t good at debating.  My goal wasn’t to change her mind, but to put a stone in her shoe.  So, I brought the conversation to a close by saying that I hoped she would take a little time to think things through a little deeper, since these issues have wider ramifications than we often hear discussed in the public square.

I told her to have a nice day and headed on.

I have nothing against this girl.  She seemed very sweet, and I’m sorry she was uncomfortable.  But it was obvious that she’s been socialized into her beliefs, which led to her promoting specific policies.

But when asked for her reasons, her silence was telling.

 

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About Keith

Christian, Conservative, Husband, Father, Writer.

7 responses to “My (Condensed) Conversation with the ACLU Girl”

  1. NotAScientist says :

    “But when asked for her reasons, her silence was telling.”

    All it is telling is that a person hired to help promote something on the street isn’t necessarily the most learned in their particular subject. Just as people online responding to or posting blog entries aren’t necessarily the most learned in a given subject.

    But the ability of a person to converse on a subject (whether or not they should be able to) does not necessarily mean that the person’s position is wrong.

    “I didn’t say this, but in this state employers can fire anyone at any time.”

    So in your state (and I don’t know which one that is), a state employer can fire a black woman for being black? Or for being a woman? Or for being a Muslim? Legally?

    • Keith says :

      All it is telling is that a person hired to help promote something on the street isn’t necessarily the most learned in their particular subject. Just as people online responding to or posting blog entries aren’t necessarily the most learned in a given subject.

      But the ability of a person to converse on a subject (whether or not they should be able to) does not necessarily mean that the person’s position is wrong.

      You’re absolutely right. But you’re responding to a point I didn’t make. “Her silence was telling..” What was it telling? that she was not persuaded through reason, but had been socialized to hold these positions. If she was familiar with both sides of the issue, my questions would not have caught her flat footed. There are people on her side who ARE well informed on the subject, but if you’re going to take money to make legislative differences, I would hope you have your reasons down. Much like I expect baristas to know how to make a mocha, even though they’re just hired hands. The point is that this is an example of someone taking action in a movement they cannot explain. That’s a problem.

      So in your state (and I don’t know which one that is), a state employer can fire a black woman for being black? Or for being a woman? Or for being a Muslim? Legally?

      They can’t give those reasons for firing, but they can walk in and say “we don’t need you anymore.” Unless the fired employee can prove they were fired for being black, woman, muslim etc…then the employer is within his/her rights under state law (again, as I understand the law, anyway. Which is why I qualified the statement in the sentence after the one you quoted.)

  2. Matt says :

    “But aren’t you trying to force your moral viewpoint?”

    Exactly!

    And don’t people realize that virtually all laws are designed to enforce morality to some degree? If people were sinless, we wouldn’t need laws…or even governments, for that matter.

    • Keith says :

      Wasn’t it Aristotle that said morality is the only thing that can be legislated? I see the whole “you can’t legislate morality” claim more and more lately.

  3. Albert says :

    Get article. It really shows how a lot of people will stand behind a cause and not know anything about it.

    It tickles their ear and sounds like the right thing “Equal rights!” and yet not be able to understand what it’s really trying to do.

    NotAScientist saying that her lack of knowledge doesn’t make the stance wrong is completely correct.
    But the article wasn’t addressing whether the issue was right or wrong but that she didn’t understand the issue enough to defend it. In fact, her silence was because when you posed the questions to her it pretty much made the stance sound absurd to her and she didn’t know how to respond.

    Just like someone telling you that it’s not right to judge. That’s a judgement on it’s own. And if you explain that to them, a lot of time they will just deny it or stubble because they didn’t realize that.

    Any time you point out the fallacies in someones thinking you will cause them to pause. And that is the goal, to put a stone in their shoe. Let them really think about what they are supporting/believing and allow them to grow from the situation.

    Knowledge of all sides of an issue really brings to light what the truth really is. And if you do this honestly for yourself, you can’t be caught off guard because you have sought the truth out.

    • Keith says :

      Hopefully this particular girl will think it through a little more. People of every worldview, even if it’s true, can be socialized into it. But at some point they have to “own it” and figure out why it’s true.

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