This is a word with dual meaning. When a specific intent is applied to it, it can mean “the unjust or prejudicial treatment of different categories of people” but in a scientific and logical sense, it only means “recognition and understanding of the difference between one thing and another”.
Can any person who believes in any sort of personal or moral code not be discriminatory?
In my opinion, I do not think they can. I also do not think the second iteration of the word’s meaning necessary implies the first is in play. People can make choices (to understand the difference between one thing and another) without having unjust or nefarious motives. This is an important distinction as “discrimination” is as misused today as is the word “racism”.
It seems to stand to reason if you believe in anything, you MUST make choices to do or not to do, to associate or not to associate and to support or not to support to remain true to your beliefs, even if those beliefs are not currently regarded as in vogue by the aficionados of popular culture. Just because “everybody is doing it” does not make something right, it only means that it is popular.
I look at how many churches are trying to move away from God’s law as part and parcel of popularity winning over principle. Gay “rights” is one of the primary drivers in this move. On a personal level, I happen to believe that homosexuality is a biblical sin, but I also believe that Christians are commanded to hate the sin but to love the sinner. I won’t crusade of try to force my personal beliefs on anyone – if one hears what I believe is the Word of God and chooses to ignore it – that is on them, not me.
Consistent with my lack of desire to force my beliefs on anyone, on a political level, I lean libertarian and believe that it is none of my business what another person does as long as they don’t impinge on my rights to the same.
This is why, at least for me, Christians being forced to perform services (not just cakes or photos for gay weddings but providing contraception and others) by force of law that run counter to their beliefs…and being accused of discrimination (of the first connotation) in the process is flatly wrong.
The invocation of the word “Christian” conjures up the mental image of an organized religion. Even though the term “religion” is defined as “the belief in and worship of a superhuman controlling power, especially a personal God or gods”, it is also defined as “a particular system of faith and worship” and “a pursuit or interest to which someone ascribes supreme importance”. Using this definition, the secular effort to mainstream GLBT behaviors is a de facto religion.
This is an important distinction as the Constitution states that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…” but Congress is, in fact, legislating a secular religion by prohibiting the discrimination (choices) by religious people necessary to remain faithful to their beliefs.
Some will say that my stance would legitimize racism, bigotry and would result in a lack of social cohesion. Perhaps it would come as a surprise to them that I actually agree – because I cannot find the elimination of racism, bigotry or a mandate for social cohesion in the Constitution. I only find a mandate for government to protect the environment where all people can do, believe and be whatever they want to be, even if that is a racist, a bigot or anti-social.
I must be clear that I do believe elimination of these things are important to the existence of a just society – I just believe it is society’s role to do so, that this is not a goal of government. Government cannot legally eliminate undesirable or illegitimate social behaviors without compromising those that are desirable and legitimate.
If you have a right to do something, I have an obligation not to interfere with that right – but that is a double edged sword because it is incumbent on you not to interfere in my rights. So you can go and be GLBT, communist, a hipster, a Grand Kleagle of the KKK (if you are a Democrat, you can be all of those) and expect me to defend your right to do so – just do not expect my support to extend to validation of your behaviors by legally mandating acceptance or celebrating you as you practice them.
In these matters, I choose to discriminate. To stay true to my own morality, I must do so – and that should never be made illegal.