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You are totally free to disagree with me, as long as you follow the same rules as everyone else, which is that we can disagree (Steve and I do so often) but we do not lower it to personal attacks.

As to your comments, I do not believe that any private business should be required to provide goods and services to anyone that they do not desire to have as a customer. If they turn away too many customers, they will end up going out of business and someone else will open a business to serve the demand. Rather than having the government decide to force a business owner to violate their own beliefs in order to have a business, the free market should be allowed to deal with the issue If there is a demand for homosexual "wedding" cakes, then there will be bakeries that will fill that demand. A baker who does not support homosexual "marriage" should not be forced to provide a cake that they do not wish to make.

If people disagree with the bakery policy, they are free to not spend money at that establishment for other things, instead rewarding those who do what they think is correct with their business (and money). I have no problem with a business being allowed to choose not to offer services to any group. If Joe Smith decides that he does not want to serve people of a certain ethnic group, I believe that is his right. It may be a poor business choice, or it may be a very good one, depending on the reactions of the buying public. If the public likes the atmosphere in his business, and wants to spend money there, then he should not be forced to change his policy by the government. If the public decides that they do not like his policies, and choose to go elsewhere, then Joe loses business and money.

I know of one suburban restaurant and bar that was very popular. When the area demographics changed somewhat, the crowd also changed, with many minority members coming in and demanding different music, and changing the atmosphere to the point where the normal weekend regulars became uncomfortable. Many quit patronizing this establishment, and the percentage of minority customers grew to the point where the place was basically turned into the type of establishment you would find in an urban area. Fights became common, and long time employees quit rather than deal with the new clientele. The owner was forced to hire off duty police in order to provide security, rather than relying on the normal doormen/ bouncers

After a few months of this, people arrived to find a sign on the front door one Friday afternoon. It said something along the lines of "I enjoyed providing a safe and fun establishment for many years. Due to changes, I found that I had to hire armed police officers just to protect my employees. It is no longer fun, and you can thank those who did not know how to act civilized for the fact that we are now CLOSED"

He sold the property to another bar owner in the area, who remodeled the place, and who now closes at 11 PM on the weekends, and offers no musical entertainment, in order to avoid the problem customers

If either owner had been allowed to deny service to some, the businesses may have still been doing well.

If you do not like the policy of a business, do not spend your money there. If you think there is a demand for a certain service or service to a certain group, invest your own money and open a business providing that service.

Every time the government demands "rights" for one group, they also take away rights from others

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My point, with that example, is that the options for the business owner were limited because he was not allowed to exclude people who had a different view of proper behavior. Trust me he would have as many troublemakers tossed out as possible, but every time someone did something that got themselves tossed out, it caused more trouble. He finally chose to close the business rather than deal with the issues and claims that he was racist for throwing out members of the "special" group

In the case of the baker, it is not that making the cake would harm the business, it is that providing goods or services to an event that they believe is wrong forces them to violate their own personal beliefs. They were not banning homosexuals from their businesses, but they were unwilling to bake a cake especially for the "wedding" because this would violate their moral beliefs that marriage is between one man and one woman. The harm is not a loss of business, it is a loss of freedom to chose not to participate in something they consider wrong.

The simple fact, to me, is that someone who risks their own money and labor to start a business should be free to set the terms and conditions for that business, and that includes the right to refuse service to any one for any reason at any time.

Here is another example. A pizza business refused to provide delivery service in a high crime neighborhood, which happened to be primarily Black. There were protests and threats of lawsuits because the were "discriminating against the black neighborhood" The refusal to deliver there was not based on race, it was based on safety of his drivers, but many called him and the drivers bigots for refusing to take what they considered to be an unacceptable risk.

Saying that people who have different view are "racist, bigoted, homophobic or other such things is an attempt to silence other opinions. I am not homophobic, meaning afraid of homosexuals. I don't care what two or more consenting adults do in private. I do have a problem when they try to change long held definitions, such as marriage, and demand that everyone accept and support their choices.

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In that case, I would have to agree with you. If they would not take the risk in a similar neighborhood that was not a minority neighborhood, but had the same risks, calling them bigots was wrong. And, I'd agree that often happens.

I must firmly disagree. I think such a statement is an attempt to justify bigotry.

As a hypothetical question (I ask it as hypothetical because it's not intended to insult, judge, or even state a difference of opinion, just to make a point.) I'd like to ask you this:

Let's assume I run some business. Maybe a bakery since we've used that example before... You walk in to buy something and I tell the person operating the sales counter: "Refuse service to that man. He sneaks and takes pictures of women peeing." Now, of course, you can see that my motivation to deny you service is totally irrelevant to the operation of a bakery. In fact, it's almost a laughable reason to deny you service. Do you support my decision to deny you service just because I can?

I absolutely do support your right to deny service to anyone for any reason. It is your business and you have invested your hard earned money to create it. I may not agree with your choice, but I will defend to the death your right to make your own choices.

Some examples:

I will not even consider riding a motorcycle without wearing a helmet. I consider it to be a needed safety accessory. I oppose laws mandating that helmets be worn, and support the idea that each rider can decide for themselves what risks are acceptable to them.

I am a non smoker. I do not like smoke. I much prefer a business that bans smoking. I do not support laws that require private businesses to ban smoking in their privately owned establishments

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If you do not like the policies of a business, you are more than free to not patronize that business, and even to, if you feel strongly enough, open a competing business and set your own policies. I believe that the free market will solve most problems and that people should be free to make choices that others may not agree with. I do not believe that it is the place of the government to force people to violate their deeply held beliefs, nor do I believe that anyone should be given a preference by the government because of the color of their skin or their sex

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Actually opening a business only implies a desire to use your talents and skills to make money, and to control your own working environment. The only reason that someone cannot open their own business is that they are unwilling to take the risks and spend the time to do so. The person who has taken the risks and done the work to build a business should, as a reward for their actions, be free to run such business as they see fit.

As to the idea that governmental intervention is required because the free market does not regulate itself, the actual fact is that the government gets involved when the results of the free market are not what they want

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I must disagree. Opening a public business implies some sort of duty to actually serve the public, instead of randomly choosing who or what based on irrelevant criteria.

One word about government: Governments in capitalistic countries generally do not intervene unless the free market has failed to regulate itself. The fact that these laws were passed indicates that the free market has failed in this regard. There are often no other competing businesses and barriers to simply opening another business. Sometimes this is due to a high cost of doing business, a market that cannot support one more business, or even collusion. Regardless... The statement of open your own business is a naive solution at best. It's another excuse to justify bigotry.

Since we both have repeatedly stated our differing opinions, I'm finished here. There's no point in beating a dead horse as they say. I'm sure you'll agree that this discussion is going nowhere.

For what it's worth, I totally agree with you. A private individual may choose with whom to associate with or not on any basis whatsoever, however high or low. That's his prerogative. But running a business impacts much more upon wider society and brings with it certain obligations to that society. Those who cannot be content with those obligations need not run a business. That's a personal choice, not a personal necessity.

As for Egwalrus, he and I have frequently had similar disagreements, since long before this forum even existed. Back on PS we often had similar little ding dongs. And it always ended in much the some way - one or other of us recognising that neither of us were going to change the other's opinion by one single iota, and simply suggesting that we agree to disagree.

Which is always what pretty much happened in the end.

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Most places I've been to, be it a bar or restaurant, usually have some disclaimer indicating that the management have the right to not serve anyone at anytime. In a pub for instance, if you're obviously legless and can't stand, no one will sell you another drink. This usually turns to violence when the refused drunk arcs up and lashes out at anyone. Several people have died in such places over the years. A restaurant can refuse you if you don't meet their dress code, or again, if you're pissed, even McDonalds and KFC refuse to serve people at a drive through (people walking up to the drive through window, cited as a health and safety regulation)

Been following this thread since it started, and have realised one thing, we live in a good part of the world, lol, and have some insights on what kind of things governments are doing to their own people. We made this tree change about 6 years ago and all 3 of us do not miss the city, fine to visit every now and then, the rest we just watch on the news. Thanks guys, been interesting.

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I do note that Steve has never owned or run a business, and would bet that this is also true for MPT. I, on the other hand, have owned and run several businesses. At one point I had over 25 employees, and was planning an expansion that would have provided jobs for at least 25 more. Because of changes caused by governmental actions, I canceled the expansion plans, and actually cut back on current employees. I actually had to go in a totally different direction, offering different services to companies rather than retail customers.

My opinions and views are based on my experiences in business over many years

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There is a huge difference between academic theory and actual reality. Unless you have taken the risks, and made the sacrifices, theories about how a business should be run are just that, theories. This is one of the major problems with government imposing rules on business. The politicians who have never run a business do not understand that what may work in theory often does not work in real life. They have never started the week on Monday wondering how they are going to make payroll on Friday. They have never gotten to Friday, having enough to pay the bills and the employees, but not having enough left over to draw a paycheck themselves.

Starting a business is not easy, but it can be done. Those who take the risks and make the sacrifices should have the right to control the business, and to make choices that they believe are best for themselves and their businesses.

We will disagree, but this does not mean that I will become silent and not respond to posts

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