Not all discrimination is equal. A business model can be set up to cover a great deal of it. If a person comes into a store or an office, it is often obvious if they are mistreated by observing physical and verbal reactions. It’s another thing when phone calls are not returned or online applications are rejected. A small business owner that screens all calls coming in may decide not to pursue a customer and the customer in most cases won’t know why – they can only assume.
People discriminate on many levels – not just race and the other top issues. A screener may not like how someone talks or how they present themselves. A minor listing on a resume may turn off an employer that no one else would ever think of. Levels of hatred come in many shades, styles and colors. I knew an employer who threw away any resume that listed a church affiliation or “Sunday School Teacher” because they assumed the person was a “Bible Thumper” and wouldn’t fit into the class of other current employees. Would those applicants ever be able to figure that out? I doubt it.
Some businesses are easier to discriminate in. A baker has a hard time defending why they won’t make a cake for a gay wedding. I call these “close market” cases. The business person is cornered and cannot get out of the discrimination without it being obvious. Other businesses are more open and can pick and choose who they want to service without punishment. A delivery business may fit into this by saying they won’t travel to a “certain area” because . . . well maybe it is too far or it doesn’t fit their driving schedule.
Hollywood and other entertainers are having a hay day with this level of discrimination. They are refusing to do business in states where they disapprove of certain laws. Is this their right? Maybe. But why are they permitted to refuse business out of their basis of discrimination and others aren’t. Isn’t it discrimination if an entertainer refuses to perform in an area for any reason. Could they be prosecuted if it could be proven that they refused to go there for racial reasons?
Remember; the baker, the photographer, the florist, store owner etc are backed in a corner and it’s easy to pick on them. We have a much bigger discrimination going on where the powerful can move and change their discriminations at will and get away with it because they are in open markets.
Discrimination is always here. It is always changing and morphing into a new ugly creature. Be on guard. We may not be offering “whites only” drinking fountains anymore but we are still offering “________________ only” . . . you fill in the blank. Who are you discriminating against today?
James 2:3-5 (NIV)
3 If you show special attention to the man wearing fine clothes and say, “Here’s a good seat for you,” but say to the poor man, “You stand there” or “Sit on the floor by my feet,” 4 have you not discriminated among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts?