08 April 2014

Are You Now Or Have You Ever Been A Republican

I'm in an odd position.

I support gay rights.  Gay people are people and people have rights.

My position on gay marriage is that the government has no business defining what marriage is.  If two people want to be married, it's between them and their church and God.  If they want it to be legally binding, then make a contract.  More than two people want to try their luck, let them have at it.

It makes it hard to have a solid opinion about what happened to the CEO at Mozilla.

Tam compares it to Zumbo and Metcalf.  There's certainly some parallel there.

Robb takes an opposite stance in the comments.

I am uncertain.

I think that the capacity you made the statement under matters.  McThag as an employee of Lovely Harvey Ind. cannot make statements that are harmful to LHI and expect to keep my job.  McThag as a private citizen can say any damn thing I want.  But where is that line drawn and who decides what hat I was wearing when I said what I said?

A gigantic part of the problem here is Eich's political speech was made public because of California's laws requiring publishing who donated what to whom.  That's an issue that concerns me.  Mr Eich didn't have his CEO of Mozilla hat on when he donated $1,000 towards Prop 8.  Mr Zumbo and Mr Metcalf were wearing their Outdoor Life Writer and Guns and Ammo Columnist hats respectively when they offended the customers.  I think that distinction should matter.

It bothers me that Mozilla has taken an advocacy position about an issue that has nothing to do with the product they are selling; the same as it bothered me when McDonald's donated to Handgun Control Inc.  What does the political position have to do with your product?  Metcalf and Zumbo both took positions related to the product actually being sold by the magazines they worked for.

I think that it also matters that Zumbo and Metcalf were fired within days if not hours after they took their contrary positions.  Eich was let go resigned YEARS later and Mozilla had been aware of his donation for some time, it appears to only have become an issue because OK-Cupid had a snit in the last few months.

Are these distinctions without difference?

In all three cases the statements and donation have an effect on the employer's business.

But it seems clear that we are now free to discriminate based on political position.  I can't discriminate against age, race, sexual orientation, sex or religious affiliation (unless they're Christians), but I can discriminate on party affiliation!  I don't think that's right.

It further bothers me that if Mr Eich had donated $1,000 in opposition to Prop 8 we would not have heard a fucking peep from anyone!

Update:  I want there to be a fair and consistent way to resolve this.  I don't think that there is one.

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