A recent letter writer stated Christian store owners should be able to discrimiate against LGBT citizens and be allowed to refuse service to LGBT citizens (“Forcing businesses to serve LGBT people is an infringement of First Amendment rights,” April 15).
The first question I have is: How does that Christian who wants to discriminate know the customer is LGBT? Does every customer have to answer very personal questions about their orientation and practices? Or, do LGBT citizens have to wear pink stars?
Because the topic is religious discrimination: Can Jewish shop owners ban Christians? Can Christians ban Muslims? It goes on to absurd conclusions.
The larger point, however, is that the store owner receives many government benefits for his or her business, such as fire protection, police protection, public roads for customers and suppliers, street lights, sidewalks and many other publicly funded government benefits.
There is a tradeoff. Society and government give you a safe community, and you serve all the members of the society equally.
No member of our society deserves to be discriminated against in a public space.
Robert Weatherford, San Luis Obispo