Thursday, April 28, 2005

The Socratic Method Of Legislation 

Yesterday my post on the elitism of the argument for pharmacists' right to abstain from selling items they object to roused some excellent comments from corrente readers on how far it could be taken if applied to other areas of life.

The point in the orginal Belisarus piece is that if pharmacists should be able to abandon their job duties when required to sell birth control they find objectionable, shouldn't it follow that cashiers, clerks, etc. also be able to refuse service when faced with a transaction they disgree with, as selling liquor or condoms, etc.

The game then becomes, how to extend this logic throughout the capitalist realm? Herewith are some ideas:

Ed Drone--"If I still worked in the public library, could I use my conscience to avoid checking out Republican and other fascist-minded books to the would-be-deluded public? Seems to me I could. And would the Patriot Act apply to the lists of books not checked out?
And can policemen ticket you, or avoid doing so, based on bumper stickers?"
bartkid--"I'm sorry, sir. I cannot sell you Ms. Coulter's Treason. In fact, by your intent to buy this book, I must follow my conscience and report you to the FBI, under terms of the Patriot Act, as accomplice to terrorism after the fact, given Ms. Coulter's very public calls for mass murder of members of identifiably American organizations and groups."

MJS--"No, Mr. Chubby Person, you may not have fries with that."
"I looked at the in-house tape of you in aisle five, and frankly you don't look diabetic to me."
"This Bud is not for you."
"The idea of your grandmother wearing a diaper disgusts me. Let her walk around naked."
"Don't even think about buying lubricant here, perv-boy."
"Why would you be buying Night Time Cold Medicine at three o'clock in the afternoon? Do I look stupid?"

Gegee--"Yes, I realize you ordered a BigMac but I'm a vegetarian. Eating meat is wrong."

Joe Bob--"...if a garbageman who was morally opposed to birth control found a used condom in your trash can could he henceforth refuse to pick up your refuse?"

pjk--"...can we refuse to pay taxes based on our personal belief that GW & Co. have completely fucked up the entire country, and would just squander the money?"

Ah, the socratic method.

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