Freedom of religion in the workplace, government and everywhere else, Part 3
(This is the final article to a three-part series, Part 1 of the series discusses the basic principles of freedom of religion on the constitution, Part 2 of the series discusses why it is important and the history behind the freedom of religion clauses before and after it was enacted, the final Part 3 now discusses the importance of religion in the government and the workplace in Utah Employment Law)
In the same vein of racial segregation, many are being taught from a college textbook the opinion that the Supreme Court Opinion of Brown v. Board of education and the opinions and laws that followed was a bad decision and that private corporations should have been weeded out instead by natural selection on how they treated racial classes.
The problem with that mindset is that there is no check and balances. If Brown v. Board never passed, who is to say that we would be better off. Without Brown v. Board, there is nothing to tell anyone that they cannot discriminate except the public. So would discrimination not be worse off than what we see today? How could African Americans, who were already at a disadvantage, tell everyone not to go to the only grocery store in town that throws out racial slurs?
Most towns didn’t get second grocery stores until the 90s. Many didn’t even have grocery stores until then. When was natural selection of businesses going to happen? Racial desegregation flows in the same veins as free exercise of religion. They have the same purpose. To keep a flawed principle from lingering in the minds of the masses.
Instead, it was necessary for the nation to learn to desegregate just as the colonists slowly learned to desegregate religion. Also, if you knew who the Supreme Court justices that were lined up to vote on that case when it hit the United State’s High Court House, you would know that Brown v. Board was not in a position to make it.
If you knew what events transpired from that time it hit the court house, and from the time it was ready to vote, you would understand how divine intervention also has a play in politics whether for the good or for the worse. The decision in Brown v. Board of education also decreed a higher law among our nation and for the first time which was, “Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.” and who is my neighbor?
They teach people to care for their neighbors and the poor and they are probably the best teachers on telling people why they should obey the criminal laws and other laws their government enacts. For many religious-bound individuals, there is not an issue with getting tied-up with the wrong side of the law.
Jesus Christ was one of the greatest law interpreter of all-time. The laws in the scriptures are just as important as the laws taken for the bar exam. Jesus Christ not only knew the laws in the law of Moses, he knew of their hierarchy. He understood the underlying principles that laid behind the laws. That was one of the first things he taught in his ministry when he gave his famous sermon on the mount with the beattitudes.
He gave one of the greatest clarifications of the laws that the Jews had been following for thousands of years. He not only taught the laws, he taught the purpose behind the laws and taught for people to find a greater purpose beyond themselves. His beatitude sermon was essentially a sermon on meekness.
Meekness is not weakness, despite it rhyming so well together. Meekness is searching out the good and virtuous ways of law and having a desire to bestow that on those around you. That’s what Moses, Samuel, Daniel, Jeremiah, Elijah and Ezekiel wanted to do, because they wanted to do it, not because it was forced upon them and they didn’t force what they taught upon those they taught, they gave their listeners the freedom to choose to listen. When one obeys a law such as thou shalt not steal or kill or lie or commit adultery, there are consequences that derive from obeying that law. There are also consequences that derive from not obeying that law.
In light of that, there are in deed higher laws than the laws that are country pulled from the sky. The mid to late 1800s in the United States was probably the renaissance of our nation. There were more laws interpreted and pulled down and understood from physics, to chemistry, medicine to math mixed with engineering, architecture, literature and the arts. Since then however, it seems like the U.S. has become complacent with those laws. It may be that we can’t understand the higher laws of physics and chemistry. Many people think that we have peaked in regards to information and technology.
The thought goes that we have learned as much as we can now. Is that true though? Or was there a rut that we ran into in the 1900s were some new principles and theories in those fields of study were false or incomplete that halted us furthering in our understanding. At some point in time, we decided that legally, man was not made to fly. However, two brothers in North Carolina decided to take on a hobby that countered that thought and started to learn about air pressure and lift.
Religious exercise is also at its height during times of war and famine. This happened in World War II and the wars in the Book of Mormon. During World War II, men who had never prayed or believed in God their entire lives, would start turning to God when they would see their comrades fail to return back to Italy in their bombers and that it was now their turn to fly back into Axis territory. Religions from all around the world started turning to God to ask for him to turn the war away. The once diverse Europe was on the verge of extinction to a class of individuals that wanted everyone to have one religious thought.
The recent recession of 2008 was blamed on Wall Street. I was in the capital building listening to Christopher Dodd and Barney Frank talk about their new act to put the hurt on the banks for what they did to our economy. However, decades before, politicians on both sides of the aisle agreed that the principle of “Thou shalt not covet” was not applicable to the housing market.
So the federal government passed the fair housing act which made is possible for almost all americans to qualify for a 30-year mortgage. Because of this, many americans took on loans that they didn’t fully understand or they were not able to financially afford. The housing market skyrocketed, people bought homes left and right and soon, they all slowly started defaulting on their loans causing a ripple effect throughout the U.S. and world economy.
Because of these bad loans, banks would take these loans and sell them in packages to foreign nations, with the knowledge that the mortgages weren’t the prices they were really cracked up to be, overlooking the “thou shalt not bear false witness” charge. The fingers were pointed at Wall Street and now the government controls who does and doesn’t get to have a loan and the major underlying issue of coveting was never fixed, reprimanded, occupied or preached during this time, since politically, there was no voice for this religious principle.
Ones religion should define them on who they are and what they stand for and they should not have to feel shame to hide it under a rug when they are in a public, government or business setting.
The only way businesses can be taught a different religion other-than self-interest and atheism or mindset(even though not all atheists are egocentrics) is to force them to accommodate to religious beliefs instead of everyone accommodating to atheism. Not everyone is an atheist.
Actually, a small fraction of the nation of the whole actually wholeheartedly embrace that as common belief. If that is the case, then the beliefs of the people should be reflected in the private businesses and how they conduct business and the government as a whole. In sum, are private enterprise has a bunch of hypocrites.
As an employment attorney, I work with many businesses and insurance companies when they have wronged an employee and 90% of the time, I know exactly how they are going to respond. They respond the way unsegregated atheist mindset tells them how to respond. That mindset also is what gets them in trouble in the first place.
I am making a very good living off of the current status-quo but it still makes me sick when I work with clients and they tell me their story on how they were wronged and have to help them walk through a hard time of financial and emotional turmoil for exercising a right. I would rather be making a living teaching businesses how to avoid the pitfalls before they happen.
Most businesses overlook constitutional rights, employers feelings, employers livelihood in order to save a few dollars. They are like the step-father that no-one wanted but still are forced to be with them five days out of the week. I can tell you that these businesses will always be the unwated step-father with few stars next to their reviews until their diet changes. They are like the step-father that no-one wanted but still are forced to be with them five days out of the week.
Smart businesses understand why they are making money and how they are making money.
They understand better the psychological makeup of an individual and what makes them tick, what motivates them and what makes them want to work for them. They understand that an employee spends 60 - 70% of their waking hours in the walls of the business and the business is essentially a second family.
Businesses that aren’t like this get in trouble with employment law more than the other businesses. They have to learn the hard way through litigation, fines and payouts. However, just like how religion teaches individuals how to conform with the law, it is hard to teach someone or some business the high-road if they were never taught it in the first place.
So, the best thing to do is exercise your religion in your business and teach that business what religion is and how they should accommodate religion it while still not imposing and forcing others to buy in to a specific particular mindset. Debate is what got us this country and debate is the only thing that will keep this country afloat. If there is no debate and only silence, then we slide back into medieval times with death penalties and persecution for not conforming to the silence. If you feel like you shouldn’t work on Sunday or Saturday or on religious holidays, then tell that to your employer.
If you are a business or an employee and have questions or concerns about how to go about this route, feel free to reach out to our Utah Employment Law Firm and Attorney. We are here to help.