All in the Family featured the curmudgeonly Archie Bunker. Archie was television’s most famous grouch, blunt, blustering, straightforward and untouched by the PC crowd. He was the archetype of the conservative male. Michael desprately tried to reeducate him, but he persisted in his breviloquence.



Looking back at the last 40 years, we realize: ARCHIE WAS RIGHT!

9/19/2014

Nothing to See, No Reason to Sue

I've officially had it with this story, and the way it is being reported in the Mainstream and Christian Media.

N.C. Dunkin' Donuts bakery sued for religious discrimination

ASHEVILLE, N.C – A Dunkin' Donuts franchise here will go to federal court to answer charges that it refused to hire an Asheville man who could not work on Saturday because of his religious beliefs.
Darrell Littrell, a Seventh-Day Adventist, applied for a job as a donut maker at the Citi Brands' Arden manufacturing plant in December 2012, the suit alleges. He was later interviewed by the company's plant manager.
In January, 2013 the manager offered Littrell the donut maker position, and told Littrell to report to work the next day, a Friday, at 3 p.m., the suit said.
Littrell said that he could not start work on Friday afternoon, since Adventists observe a Sabbath from sunset Friday until sunset Saturday. The manager then withdrew the job offer to Littrell, the commission alleges.
My first bone to pick with this is the way some media sources are reporting this as if it is a giant battle for equal rights for Christians.  It's not.  It never will be.  Jehovah Whiteness and 7th Day Adventists are not now, and have never been Christian denominations.  They are offshoots of a religious movement known as Millerites.  Yes back in 1833 some Millerites held traditional Christian beliefs.  That isn't the way it is now.  Today both groups deny basic tenants of  Christology.  This means they cannot be by definition Christians.

There is of course no reason to expect the Mainstream Media to make that distinction or care.  Christian media sources, should be able to get the story right and not pretend that this EEOC filling is some sort of cosmic battle between good and evil.  It's not.  It's not even a minor battle between religious freedom in general and corporate insensitivity.  David isn't going up against Goliath here.  Quit trying to make the story into something it isn't.

My second bone to pick has to do with the story and lawsuit.  If  a man applies for a job, and he knows he has certain religious beliefs that he cannot violate, he might want to bring those up before he is told to report to work.

Here is what I think happened.  Times are tough and jobs are hard to come by.  Darrell Littrell saw a job advertised.  He wanted the job and applied for it.  He interviewed.  It went well.  The boss seemed to like him.  Darrell forgot to mention that there is a 24 hour period of the week he can't work.  No sense being disagreeable about work hours before getting the job.  For some reason it slipped Darrell's mind to ask what shift he would be working.

Then something good happened, Darrell was offered the job and told to report to work.  The problem was that Darrell suddenly remembered that he needs sundown Friday to sundown Saturday off from work.  So despite the fact that he needed the job, he told the boss he couldn't go to work.  The boss figured Darrell didn't need the job that badly and withdrew his offer.

This is not discrimination.  Dunkin Donuts is a 24 hour a day, seven days a week business.  Obviously they need people to work on the Sabbath.  I think the boss knew that he needed people to work the weekend.  That's why he hired a guy to work on the weekend.  Darrell springs the news he can't work the weekend as soon as he is offered the job, and the boss says "OK, I'll get someone else".  Darrell still wants the money from the job, he just doesn't want to show up and work the weekends, so he got himself a lawyer.

Too bad for Darrell.  The job is working on the weekends.  Maybe if that was a problem you should have mentioned it before you got the job offer.  Nobody is discriminating against you because you don't want to work.  Nobody is questioning your deeply held religious beliefs.  They have a job that involves working the weekend.  You don't want to work the weekend.  They don't have a job you want to do.  There is no reason to sue them.

So what would the  "reasonable accommodation" required by the law, look like in Darrell's case?  Well according to Darrell's POV someone else would have to work his shift.  That means the company would either have to hire someone to do it, or force another employee to work it. 

If Darrell believes that working on a Sabbath is a sin, why would he insist on having someone sin on his behalf?  If Darrell believes in fairness, and I'm assuming he does since he is arguing that it's fair for the company to let him have the day off, why would he think it's fair to disrupt another employee's work schedule?  Don't other people have a right to enjoy the weekend too?

8 comments:

  1. As a Torah-observant Jew, I have applied for a number of jobs in my lifetime. I have always made it a point to be up front in the interview about my Sabbath observance and other high holy days on which I cannot work. At a minimum, it is the courteous and respectful thing to do.

    For one employer, this was exactly the reason he didn't hire me. His business would have required me to work an occasional Saturday, which is precisely why I was up front with him during the interview - so that he could make a hiring decision that was GOOD FOR HIS BUSINESS, not good for me.

    The way I look at it, the employer is doing me a favor when he hires me, and I hope that my work in return benefits my employer. I have never felt discriminated against when an employer did not hire me due to my religious observance - I think that is their right.

    Once I have been hired with the understanding that my Sabbath observance is non-negotiable and then later fired for my Sabbath observance, it's not necessarily discrimination either, but simply a case of the employer not acting in good faith and honoring our original agreement. C'est la vie. I don't need to sue the guy, for crying out loud.

    For me, a great deal of my job satisfaction comes from knowing that I am a valuable asset to my employer, and if my religious observance proves to be more of a deficit to my employer, then I would be better off employed elsewhere.

    On a related note, John C. Wright posted an article on his blog yesterday about an advertisement that ended with the phrase 'hardworking and reliable workers wanted' or something to that effect. The store would not post the advert because they feared being sued for discriminating against the unreliable and lazy.

    Wow. Just wow.




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  2. WaterBoy4:58 PM

    Res Ipsa: "Today both groups deny basic tenants of Christology. This means they cannot be by definition Christians."

    I'm curious in which of these basic tenets you believe the SDA do not believe?

    I've always understood the two very most basic tenets to be:
    1. Divinity of Jesus as Son of God (and later, as part of the Holy Trinity)
    2. Salvation through His death and Resurrection

    The SDA do believe in both of these, so they do qualify as Christians in my view. Beliefs extraneous to these, such as Jesus also being the Archangel Michael, may not be orthodox but they do not disqualify it as a Christian religion.

    If every denomination that believed something different than another one was disqualified on that basis, then there would only be one perfect Christian church.

    As for the employment matter, the lawsuit should be dismissed on this basis:

    1. If the company knew in advance that he was SDA and hired him anyway, it could not be religious discrimination. That they withdrew the job was because he refused to work on Saturday, not because he was SDA.

    2. If the company did not know in advance that he was SDA and hired him, it still is not discrimination for the same reason that the job was withdrawn not because of his religious beliefs, but because he refused to work on Saturday.

    3. If the company employs Christians who work on Sunday, it is further evidence that they do not discriminate on a religious basis.

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  3. ...may not be orthodox but they do not disqualify it as a Christian religion.

    Yes. It pretty much does. you have to believe in the Same Jesus who was described in the Bible, not make one up yourself and use the same name.

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  4. WaterBoy7:21 PM

    I don't see how the Jesus they follow is any different than orthodox Christianity. Even if they've mistakenly associated Jesus with Michael, it's not like they're making the appearances up from scratch. Michael did appear, and Jesus did also appear in the Old Testament, if the Christophanies are true. That the association might not hold does not mean they are inventing a new Jesus.

    These are not new. Some Christians believe some of them, and others don't. Does each mistaken appearance render their believers followers of a false Jesus, also?

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  5. WB I don't know what the SDA believes but you have to believe all of the following to be a Christian. Extra stuff that does not contradict the following is OK.

    We believe in God, the Father, the Almighty, maker of heaven and earth, and all that is seen and unseen.
    We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, eternally begotten of the Father, God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, consubstantial
    one in Being with the Father. Through him all things were made. For us men and for our salvation he came down from heaven: and by the Holy Spirit was incarnate he was born of the Virgin Mary, and became man. For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate; he suffered, died, and was buried. On the third day he rose again in fulfilment of the Scriptures; he ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead, and His kingdom will have no end.
    We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father and the Son. With the Father and the Son he is worshipped and glorified. He has spoken through the Prophets.
    We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church. We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins. We look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come.

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  6. Res Ipsa2:21 PM

    WB,

    I'm in basic agreement with Hale. On related note, The JW's don't believe that Jesus was full God and fully man. In other words they don't accept that Jesus was who he claimed to be. Of course that is their right, however that means they are not Christians. Also they have gone to great lengths to assert this belief, including rewriting the bible.

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  7. Res Ipsa2:32 PM

    Rabbi B,

    I understand your point. However I disagree with one aspect. If the employer knew in advance that you could not work the Sabbath and hired you, and you worked a shift that allowed you to not work the Sabbath THEN at a future point fired you when you refused to work the Sabbath, you would have every right to sue, because as you mentioned he acted in bad faith.

    This guy Darrell was offered a job and refused to go to the first day of work citing his religious belief. It seems that he waited till he had the job to object to the shift he needed to work. In which case too bad.

    FWIW,

    Today is Sunday. I'd rather be able to attend both church services with my family. I'm at work. I've had to work jobs that are in conflict with my preferences for decades. I still show up for work. Only once has an employer crossed a line I could not accept ethically. I gave a months notice and I've never disparaged that employer or otherwise said anything (including identifying them publicly) that would cause them harm. This clown waited to see if he would get the job and then when he wouldn't show up for work, sued them.

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  8. Obviously, we need to start checking ID when we get visitations in teh future.

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