Gay, Atheist Indiana Doctor: Does New Law Give Me The Right to Refuse Treatment on A**hole Christians?

One doctor in Indiana has some questions for his government.

Fort Schritt, Indiana — Dr. Michael Freiheit is a general practitioner in the small town of Fort Schritt, Indiana. He describes himself as both an atheist and gay. Dr. Freiheit estimates that he sees a few hundred people a month for various maladies. In the wake of his state’s governor signing a highly-contentious bill that would allow any business in Indiana to discriminate against Freiheit, who last week volunteered to provide no-cost health care at a homeless shelter, based solely on the business owners’ religiously-based discriminatory feelings toward homosexuals. This has Dr. Freiheit curious about something, and he plans to ask Indiana Governor Mike Pence and the Republicans in the state legislature directly, via email.

“Dear Governor Pence and the Republicans in the state legistlature,” Freiheit’s letter begins, “As a gay atheist doctor in a small town in Indiana, I want to applaud your bravery and standing up for your principles, because it would seem that you have given me a chance to finally stop having to treat asshole, bigoted Christians at my practice, based on my own deeply held religious views, and not anything more sinister or petty, of course.” Freiheit then goes on to ask Pence and the Republicans, “Is that not the intent of your letter, to give everyone a chance to discriminate against someone they don’t like? I am assuming that the 14th Amendment of the Constitution of the United States applies here, meaning that as a gay atheist I am permitted to not give judgmental bigots the medicine they need to get over the infections in their bodies, right?”

Freiheit told The Political Garbage Chute in a phone interview that he “really has no intention of breaking the oath” he took to do no harm to anyone, but his letter is meant to seek clarification as to just how far he — or any other business owner in the state — would be able to take their personal beliefs in discriminating against and refusing service to someone else. “Would they write a law that allows white people to refuse service to black people if their religion said it was okay? If not, then that shows you just how thinly-veiled the homophobia is in this bullshit law.”

Dr. Freiheit continued reading his letter to our reporter. “Governor Pence, I submit that if I am now to be treated as a second class citizen on an arbitrary basis, whenever the personal, religious beliefs of a shop owner or employee butts up against my sexual orientation, then every Christian who believes that in 2015 they still have a right to discriminate based on what makes them feel ‘icky’ and their desire to hold onto antiquated philosophical and mythological texts as if they are hard and fast universal truths will have to go seek medical treatment somewhere else, if that’s okay by you and your friends, Mr. Pence.” Freiheit then writes, “Therefore, I would like to ask directly if I can consider myself protected under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act that you signed to discriminate against Christians based on my religious beliefs. If I am not, then I believe your law is unconstitutional as it is not written equally and does not apply equally to all citizens of Indiana.”

“The funny thing to me,” Freiheit told our reporter, “is that all day, every day I treat people who I know deep-down think my husband and children and I are all going to Hell and that we shouldn’t even be allowed to be a family in the first place, and I still suck it up and give them their antibiotic prescriptions, diagnose their various illnesses, and ultimately help heal them.” Dr. Freiheit continued, “I don’t know why the baker or the florist in town should be given a free pass to be a whiny, baby about life and the rest of us are expected to suck it up. I don’t get why if we expect doctors and lawyers to take any and all clients that come through their doors, we can’t expect everyone who operates a business in the public square, under state regulated corporate protection for their assets, to behave with the same maturity and respect.”

Our reporter asked Dr. Freiheit why the law should apply to him if he’s a self-espoused atheist, since atheists don’t believe in God, and therefore religion is ultimately meaningless to them. “I’ll tell you why it applies to me,” Freiheit told our interviewer. “It applies because freedom of religion is the same as freedom from religion. No, I don’t practice any religion, but I have considered the religious questions in life and made a decision as to what I feel is the truth. I believe, therefore, there is no creator nor a need to worship any entity as one. I have religious beliefs; it’s just that mine are that religion is largely unnecessary, and it often gives cover to abusive assholes to be even more abusive and assholish.”

“Maybe Governor Pence and his Republican friends should have just left the can of worms closed if they didn’t want the backlash or people like me to embarrass them publicly,” Dr. Freiheit said as the interview was concluding. “It’s funny,” Freiheit said, “these conservatives act as if there wasn’t solid logical reasoning behind separating religious affairs from the operation of government. They pretend as if my husband and I getting survivor benefits, or our children enjoying normal rights of inheritance is a threat to their religious liberty, but someone refusing service to me or my family is a totally healthy expression of religion and not a back-handed slap in the face from a country so-called built on all being created equally.”

“How can we take them seriously,” Freiheit asked at last, “if they don’t behave seriously?”

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My only question is how is anyone going to know if a man or woman is homosexual? There isn’t always a noticeable difference between a homosexual and a heterosexual. The only way I could see positively knowing is if the owner or workers of the store, restaurant, ect. Personally knows the customer.

Prior to shutting down my successful manufacturing company completely because I could no longer stomach the police/warfare state my income taxes were paying for, I stopped selling to the Federal government, which had been one of my larger customers. This wasn’t a case of being discriminatory, or based on religious beliefs, but retaliation for a very real harm done to me personally by an out-of-control government that is a threat to us all with their SWAT teams, FEMA camps, watch lists and general trashing of all constitutional protections.

Should it have been illegal for me to deny service to the Feds? What if a swastika-wearing Nazi walks into a Jewish-owned shop? There are plenty of gay-owned businesses out there, too — as the good doctor above asks, do they all now have the right to decline service to Christians? How can they tell? Should we all have to wear our own group or denomination’s version of the yellow Star of David so we can all tell at a glance who we want to discriminate against?

Humans, running on a chimp chip as we do, are hardwired to be acutely concerned to the point of obsession with what other members of our species are doing with their crotches. It would be nice if we could outgrow it, but evolution happens at a snails pace so I’m not holding my breath. If someone doesn’t want to do business with me I can easily oblige them by not wanting to do business with them, either. I don’t know why any self-respecting gay would want to give his money to a Christian bigot just to make a point. The flip side of denial of service is boycott. I think I know which is more powerful.

I let go my last employee almost a year before shutting down completely, finding that the negative impacts on my quality of life were greater than any need for the extra profit above and beyond what I could earn from my own productivity. Apparently this is not all that unusual, at least in the US, as a childhood friend of mine who also went into manufacturing did the same thing. Economics and social commentary blogger Charles Hugh Smith did the same thing, and has had numerous readers tell him that they did it. It just isn’t worth the hassle to people who place quality of life above income, and anybody with their act together enough to run a business can earn a good enough living by themselves.

Anyone who believes that a Christian person should be forced to serve an unrepentant homosexual must also believe that a black person should be forced to serve a member of the Ku Klux Klan. If an unrepentant homosexual can walk into a Christian-owned cake shop and demand a cake celebrating a homosexual faux-“marriage”, then a Ku Klux Klan member can walk into a black-owned cake shop and demand a cake that celebrates the Ku Klux Klan. If you think one is OK and the other is not, you are a blatant hypocrite and deserve nothing but taunts and ridicule.

I find this response fairly amusing. You claim that these examples are of the same caliber, except that they are definitely are not. The KKK has a history of abuse, discrimination, and heinous crimes against minorities based on the belief that they are superior. A minority who is discriminated by this group should definitely not be forced to serve one. Also,
1. These examples are not even comparable in the slightest respect. Like I stated above, the KKK has a history of doing terrible things to minorities yet are still allowed to operate. What did homosexuals as a whole ever do to Christians? Did homosexuals kill a large quantity of Christians?
2. Christians believe that homosexuality is a sin, which is a part of their belief. Although homosexuals do not believe that Christians are wrong in their belief, and truly want equality. You do love your neighbors yes? Although I have learned that Christians are not supposed to love the sins of their neighbors. This is contradictory you see, as homosexuals do not choose their sexuality. If they did, do you really think that numerous generations would choose to be discriminated against, and possibly go to hell?
Returning to your original comparison, a Christian should be forced to serve a homosexual if the option of not serving them is based upon their sexual orientation. Calling homosexuals “unrepentant” just shows how conservative and uneducated your ideology is. A homosexual is only sinning based upon a Christian’s beliefs. A belief that a man is not to love another woman, or that a woman should not love another woman as she should a man. Did you know that Homosexuality was seen as more pure than Heterosexuality in past societies? The reason being, a homosexual couples is not able to produce offspring as a heterosexual couple can. Homosexuals being together, just show how true love can be.

What if a porn company asks a photographer to do a porn shoot? Forget about religion, many photographers would refuse to be involved. Where do you draw the line? What about catering to a nude wedding? If people don’t want to be present, they shouldn’t have to, no matter how stupid or bigoted their reasons are.

Whoa, whoa, whoa! You’re starting to sound a little too rational there, buddy. You better be careful or the fascist anti-fascist SJW mafia is going to come looking for you – they simply cannot abide diplomatic reasoning when it runs counter to their religiously ideological agenda of imposing their narrow-minded beliefs on all people.

A bakery bidding on a wedding cake job and the “photographer”, or “gays” in this instance, choosing to let them, is not the same thing here at all.

I don’t quite understand your comment. If it’s just baking a cake & handing it over, then there’s nothing to object to; they’re just being asked to bake a cake, it’s not any different than anyone else’s request. But if it’s a matter of being at the event, like a photographer, then at what point do you give a person the right to decline? A business should have the right to set the parameters of what they do & don’t do. If it’s not the exact same service every time, they should have the right to decline. Now, many might want to decline to serve gays the exact same service they hypocritically give to adulterers, liars, fornicators, & gossips (for example, “oh sorry, we don’t serve your kind here, go to the back & you can buy our cupcakes that fell on the floor”), but I don’t think that’s right.

We’re almost saying the same thing, you’re just better at it than I.

Homosexuality is not a valid reason to deny people service.

I could declare that my religion is against the color red. I don’t like red and then bam! I don’t have to serve anyone wearing red.

This is a stupid reason. But according to this law, my religion allows me to refuse service.

So where is the line drawn? Race? Sexual preference? Wearing pants? Having a pilot’s license? Having detached earlobes?

I venemously disagree with the prioritization of economic business over human beings. That said, I think this law is a good thing in the long run. This law will exploit the stupidity of religion and maybe convince a couple of more people that religion is more often than not hateful, prejudiced, and perverted.

Walking into a store to purchase something with your homosexual money that is the exact same as heterosexual money and being denied because of an arbitrary aspect of your personal identity as a fundamental human right to freedom trumps the feeling that the shop owner might go to hell for treating an “other” with some decency and equality.

There’s probably more homosexuals on the planet than anti-homos (or hoNOs!) anyway.

The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few.

For all those how feel that the baker, florist, etc should be forced provide services, please answer the following:

If a homosexual couple tries to hire a surrogate to carry “their” child and the surrogate refuses on the basis of religious beliefs, should the state be able to force the surrogate to be impregnated and carry the child to term?

I know many of you will say that there is no way that this would ever happen, but thirty years ago, we would not even be having this conversation in the first place.

What we are talking about is basic contracting. When I make goods and try to sell them, I am trying to contract with you for your money. This is what a baker does when he produces a loaf of bread for general sale. If that baker refused to sell that loaf of bread to a homosexual because of his homosexuality, that would be discrimination. On the other hand, when you ask me to make a special product or service exclusively for you, you are trying to contract with me for my abilities, creativity and time. My refusal to accept that contract, for ANY reason, is my right of freedom of association.

And yes, in this article, the doctor does not have to accept patients.

1. False logic. Personal service is not professional service.
2. Your right of freedom of association is a personal right, not a professional right. The moment you throw out that ” Open for business” sign, you have declared ” I will do “A” if you Give me $. Back in the 1960’s it was settled that this was a “No Exceptions” rule.
3. So, you are saying that even if this doctor is the only one for 100 miles, he has no obligation to treat people, who might die, simply because he disagrees with how they live? Can it be because they are republicans? I am getting an idea,,,,

1) A surrogate service is a professional service, therefore it falls under the example. While I acknowledge it is an extreme example, it is a logical extension. And it falls under your “No Exceptions” rule in your 2nd point.

2) Would “no exceptions” force a homosexual baker to produce a “God Hates Fags” cake for the Westboro Baptist Church in Topeka, KS? Would “no exceptions” force a Jewish printer to produce signs that say “All Jews to the ovens”? Would “no exceptions” force a black BBQ restaurant to cater a KKK event? Keep consistent; “no exceptions” means NO exceptions.

3) A doctor has no obligation to accept a patient; just ask those who are currently insured through Medicare/Medicaid who cannot find a doctor who will accept the government insurance.

What this is all about the is left’s intolerance (yes, intolerance) for viewpoints that do not correspond to theirs and the left’s hatred for the moral absolutes of Christianity.

Sir i believe you are missing the point. You cannot force a business to make a product that is offensive but it is not okay to refuse service to someone because their beliefs or life style differs from yours. Furthermore. You asshole christians dont have morals absolutes. You have a set of antiquated, bigoted beliefs that you use an excuse to spread hate and intolerance. A set of beliefs you only really follow when its easy, like discriminating against those who are different from you. Well guess what dipshit…god created gay people too. Thats right….your perfect queer-hating god created homosexuals…and told you to love your neighbor. There was no unless they’re gay clause. Theres a reason for this sort of inconsistency. A reason why the bible keeps saying god is perfect and then starts talking about all these things that he apparently created that he hates and considers flawed even though he is supposedly infallible. The secret is is that its all bullshit created by other bigoted assholes like yourself MASO1. You and your fellow religious extremists are the biggest obstacle between manlind and world peace. Congratulations…

Vince:

First, your use of profanity to try and make your argument does not help to showcase your intelligence.

You evidently don’t know theology. While the Bible teaches that God created the world, it is Satan that is in control of this world (2 Corinthians 4:4). That same Bible teaches that for a man to lay with a man as with a woman is a sin. You are correct in that Jesus teaches us to love our neighbors. But, Jesus also commands that we go forth and sin no more (John 8:11). Thus, we love our neighbors but abhor their sin.

Now to your point about business. Who are you to say that a cake that says “God Hates Fags” is offensive? Personally, I do think it is and that the homosexual baker is within his rights to refuse to produce it. Yet why is that any different than a Christian who says that producing a product to affirm homosexual marriage is offensive?

Now to my original point. If a homosexual couple tries to hire a surrogate to carry “their” child and the surrogate refuses on the basis of religious beliefs, should the state be able to force the surrogate to be impregnated and carry the child to term? Under the legal view you seem to be espousing, the answer is “yes”. Would you care to explain yourself?

The bigger question is not about homosexuals, seeing as I don’t have a homosexuality detector. You can’t see if someone is homosexual. But answer me this. In the USA there are several Christian denominations that actively preach that black people have no souls. Then, under this law, I would be fully in my ‘religious right’ to refuse to service black people in my cake shop. Right or wrong?

1) A surrogate may be a “professional service”, but it is ultimately her body. If a surrogate would refuse to carry a child under the reasoning that the couple is gay than it is without a doubt discrimination. Although I do agree with you that the government has no right to force her to carry a child.

2) A worker is definitely allowed to refuse service to someone who is showing outright disrespect for you or a group you belong to. Because yes, there are definitely exceptions as you have said. Although going back to your “original point” a surrogate should not be discriminating based upon someone’s sexual orientation. And frankly, I wouldn’t want my child to be inside a bigoted woman who can’t respect another person’s life even when it is not affecting her own life.

3)You are absolutely correct. This is about intolerance. The intolerance of Christian’s who believe that homosexuality is a sin. Homosexuals are born homosexual. Who would pick a life where they were constantly discriminated against by the likes of you?

I had written a detailed repsonse to your points, but erased them. In rereading all of the comments, it proved to me that I am supposed to be tolerant of others’ views, but others’ need not be tolerant of mine.

And you are correct. That is what this site if for, to discuss different topics. The matter is, is that it is more than upsetting to be looked down upon and discriminated against for your sexual orientation. Sexual orientation is something that cannot be changed, if you agree with that fact or not. What if the religion I had faith in, believed that if you were a Christian, you would be sentenced to an eternal torment? Even if someone was not homosexual and did not want to have that lifestyle, a homosexual couple is in no way harming you. Sure it may go against your beliefs, but it is honestly no ones business except for those with that lifestyle. And as for your points, I would be glad to hear them.

MASO1, surrogacy is a very heavily regulated process that has numerous protections for the woman carrying the child. It is not at all like baking a cake or providing just any service. When one agrees to carry a child to term, they are putting their health and life on the line.