Re: King Richard's Faire (Carver, Mass.) discriminates against observant Jews and people with disabilities affecting their diets


In article <1128113639.665706.125390@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>,
Richard R. Hershberger <rrhersh@xxxxxxxx> wrote:
>Arval wrote:
>> Rouland wrote:
>> > I too am no expert in disability law, but there are innumerable
>> > businesses that sell food, whether as their primary business or
>> > ancillary to their primary business, and that refuse to allow patrons
>> > to bring in their own food. Ballparks are a really good example:
>> Indeed. You're right that the ubiquity of this sort of policy makes
>> it hard to believe that no one has ever challenged it in court; but
>> the legal landscape on this sort of thing has changed rather a lot in
>> the last couple decades, so it maybe open to a new challenge.
>> The first question would be whether, by not selling kosher food (for
>> example) and not allowing people to bring their own food, a ballpark
>> is implicitly preventing Jews from attending ballgames, which would be
>> illegal.
>> The second question is whether it is immoral. I reject the notion
>> that businesses are exempt from moral considerations.
>I absolutely agree that businesses are not exempt from moral
>consideration. Quite the contrary, I am cheerfully willing to bore
>anyone willing to tolerate me with long discourses on the subject. But
>this is a distinct discussion (which distinction I acknowledge you too
>have made) from the legality discussion. Frankly, I have declined to
>discuss the morality issue because the legality discussion is such an
>inviting, slow-moving target, with a deep gravity well so as to pull in
>many near misses.
Ethical considerations form a separate basis for evaluating the rightness
or wrongness of the policy. Rather than relying on an external basis for
judging the policy ("because G-d says it a bad thing"), one can attempt
to rely on alternate bases for making that judgement. One can ask, without
invoking deity/ies, "is it proper to create a situation that has the
effect of excluding devout adherents of a particular religion?" One can
then consider what sorts of accomodations would need to be be made to
avoid that situation, and debate whether they are reasonable to insist on
or to expect.

One can hope that the legal issues are grounded in ethical, not moral
concerns, but history is not encouraging.


Michael and MJ Houghton | Herveus d'Ormonde and Megan O'Donnelly
herveus@xxxxxxxxx | White Wolf and the Phoenix
Bowie, MD, USA | Tablet and Inkle bands, and other stuff