|The Burr In My Saddle|
|I received an email the other day from the Rutherford Institute. I am not certain how I wound up on their mailing list as I do not really fit their extreme-right-wing-conservative-cloaked-as-civil-liberties-supporter demographic. This email contained a plea for financial support (naturally) for their organization. The sob story that was given as an example of their current pressing issues was that of Albert Buonanno who was allegedly fired from AT&T Broadband for refusing to sign a "Certificate of Understanding" because of his religious beliefs. The document was part of a handbook issued to all employees which contained a tolerance provision that "each person at AT&T Broadband is charged with the responsibility to fully recognize, respect and value the differences among us".
Sounds pretty good right? So what was the problem?
One of the "differences" that was to be respected was homosexuality.
Buonanno claims that his religious beliefs prevented him from condoning or approving of homosexuality.
The attorneys with The Rutherford Institute are presenting testinmony in Washington, seeking backpay and punitive damages for Buonanno.
Homosexuality is the only issue that Buonanno refused to accept. He allegedly wrote a note to his superiors saying why he refused to sign a note, and that he would not intentionally persecute homosexuals in the workplace.
I cannot comprehend this logic.
Apparenly all other "differences" were acceptable for Buonanno. Other races, creeds, religions are fine...but if you wake up smiling at someone who has the same genitalia, watch out!
I would guess that his religious beliefs would not be offended by working with, say, a Muslim, Jew, Wiccan or other Pagan, Buddhist. That all of those religions in many ways directly contradict his biblical extremeist views is not a problem.
It is the one tale in Genesis, the story of Sodom & Gomorrah that gets him worked up. Yup, one story about a loud gang of vile men intent on raping some angels (who were apparently male), but who were tossed a couple of innocent virgin women to rape instead (graciously donated by their own father, who the god of the Bible saves for being such a thoughtful host to his angels). The city gets destroyed, the host's wife turns into a pillar of salt, and that sweet dad goes on to live happily with his daughters, knocking them up and raising their kids. One big happy over-extended family. Yeah...I can see how a story about angry rapists would make one deem homosexuality unacceptable. But of course, that same tale would make polygamy, abuse to women and incest perfectly normal.
Albert Buonanno, nobody was asking you to take it up the ass for the team. You should not (and hopefully will not) be compensated because you don't believe AT&T Broadband respected your right to your beliefs when the very nature of your claim is that you refused to respect others.