Sorry, Charlie.

Sorry, Charlie.

Is it legal to refuse service to someone at a food establishment? Can a business decide who it will and won’t serve? Yes it is. If you are openly carrying a firearm, the Whataburger chain in Texas will kick you out, even though open-carry is legal in that state. That’s their right. Wonder how that  would apply in other cases.

Juan Williams is somehow amazed that black Americans would want to protect their vote. Well, that’s not exactly how he put it, but that’s how it turns out. And that method of protection is supported by 3/4ths of the country. See, we can agree on some things!

And finally, we have a follow-up on the fall-out from the show of support of Charlie Hebdo. Free speech won! Well, for a little while, but, with a whimper, it gives up.

Mentioned links:

Whataburger takes stand against new open carry firearms law in Texas

Indiana pizza shop that won’t cater gay weddings to close

Juan Williams: Dems should not be losing voting-rights fight

Charlie Hebdo waves the white flag

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Show transcript

I’ve not lived in a state that has the Whataburger chain, but I know that folks who do love their stuff. The Whataburger chain in Texas decided recently that it would not allow the open carrying of guns in any of its restaurants. Management said that some patrons felt uncomfortable being around someone with a visible firearm. They will, however, still allow those carrying a legal concealed weapon to enjoy their burgers on the premises.

Let me just say that I will defend Whataburger’s right to deny service to open-carry patrons. It’s their right to determine who they will and won’t serve, or who they allow on their premises, even if what those patrons are doing is perfectly lawful. They can conduct their business as they see fit, and potential customers can choose to eat where they want. This is what we call “freedom” and “the free market”.

But boy oh boy, if they are ever asked to cater a same-sex wedding, they’d better comply. It’s much less dangerous to the life of your business to exclude lawful gun owners. If you think it’s silly to create a hypothetical situation where someone would ask Whataburger to cater a wedding, just ask Memories Pizza in Indiana how silly it is to ask a hypothetical question about catering a same-sex wedding with pizza. But you may find that difficult to ask; their answer closed their business. #LoveWins?

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Juan Williams is gobsmacked. That’s a good word for it, when a guy just cannot fathom why his team’s losing, even though the reason is obvious to me. In an article he wrote for the website The Hill, he was expressing his disbelief that the Democrats were losing the “voting rights” issue; that is, the voter ID issue.

Even most black Americans — people who, overwhelmingly, don’t vote Republican — currently favor new requirements for voters to have photo identification. Three-quarters of all voters — people of all races and political parties — favor such laws, according to polls.

The black support for photo identification of voters can only be described as amazing.

Well Juan, it just seems to me that black Americans, overall, seem to highly value their right to vote. That’s not amazing; that’s American. Juan tries to tie the voter ID issue to the poll taxes and literacy tests of yesteryear, but that’s entirely upside down. A poll tax was to prevent black people from voting. Voter ID is to protect black people’s vote. #BlackVotesMatter

And it looks like this is an issue on which we can truly all come together and agree on.  That’s a good thing, right Juan?

===

“Je Suis Charlie!” That was the hashtag activism that came out of the Islamic extremist attack on the offices of the French satire magazine Charlie Hebdo, in response to their cartoons of Mohammed. It was the most French many of us had ever spoken, defending a satire magazine that most of us had never heard of prior to that.

I don’t like it when cartoonists mock Jesus, but in America the First Amendment protects freedom of speech, and so they are allowed to. In France, this same idea was behind the Je Suis Charlie movement. We will not be intimidated by extremists.

Right up until we are.

Recently, the Charlie Hebdo editor-in-chief, whose name is in the article in the show notes and which I will not attempt in case I butcher it, waved the white flag of surrender and said that the magazine would no longer draw cartoons of Mohammed. A dozen of his colleagues died for, and the world erupted in support of, their right to mock. All that was for naught. Violence prevailed. The terrorists won.

To be sure, you can understand their concern. Who wants to poke that particular hornet’s nest again? Why put yourself in that literal line of fire? But his reasoning seemed to be strained. He claimed, “The mistakes you could blame Islam for can be found in other religions.” Perhaps, although the offices were not shot up by enraged Evangelicals, cantankerous Catholics, agitated Jews, or belligerent Buddhists. In fact, the terrorism perpetrated worldwide has predominantly come from one particular religion, but it’s not politically correct to notice that. Oh, and interestingly, no word from Charlie Hebdo about no longer drawing cartoons mocking Jesus. They know perfectly well that the Christian response will most likely be a strongly-worded letter. #ReligionOfPeace

So just in case you were wondering whatever happened to all that solidarity and righteous indignation spent in the service of free speech, that’s what happened. The French surrendered.

Filed under: ElectionsFree SpeechGovernmentGun ControlRace IssuesVoter ID