Via Dispatches from the Culture Wars
My friends at the Center for Inquiry were set to host Richard Dawkins and Sean Faircloth for a talk Wednesday night at the Wyndgate Country Club in Rochester Hills, a suburb of Detroit. But the club has now canceled the event, saying they don’t want to be associated with such an evil person.
The Wyndgate terminated the agreement after the owner saw an October 5th interview with Dawkins on The O’Reilly Factor in which Dawkins discussed his new book, The Magic of Reality: How We Know What’s Really True.
In a phone call to CFI–Michigan Assistant Director Jennifer Beahan, The Wyndgate’s representative explained that the owner did not wish to associate with individuals such as Dawkins, or his philosophies.
So he had no idea what the CFI's purpose is, and no idea who Dawkins was until he watched the O'Reilly Factor? I can see that, most bigots are ignorant. Oh, well. It is his right to be a bigot.
Although privately owned, The Wyndgate facilities are open to the public for special events and occasions. According to Title II of the Federal Civil Rights Law of 1964, “open to the public” means “all persons shall be entitled to the full and equal enjoyment of the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, and accommodations of any place of public accommodation, as defined in this section, without discrimination or segregation on the ground of race, color, religion, or national origin.”
Right to be a bigot? Check. Right to discriminate due to his bigotry? Not so much.
Now I finally understand how all the poor oppressed Christians in the U.S. feel.
“It’s important to understand that discrimination based on a person’s religion—or lack thereof—is legally equivalent to discriminating against a person because of his or her race,” said Jeff Seaver, executive director of CFI–Michigan. “This action by The Wyndgate illustrates the kind of bias and bigotry that nonbelievers encounter all the time. It’s exactly why organizations like CFI and the Richard Dawkins Foundation are needed: to help end the stigma attached to being a nonbeliever.”
And that is exactly why I came out publicly, no matter how much grief I get from my family/religious friends.
Here's the CFI-Michigan page for the fundraiser with Richard Dawkins. It found a new location and will go on as planned. For an evening with Dawkins, the cost is a value.
Hopefully, the eventual legal judgement against The Wyndgate is nowhere near as reasonably priced.