Laughing all the way…
On June 1st, the Supreme Court rendered a decision favoring a girl by the name of Samantha Elauf over retailer Abercrombie & Fitch. News coverage was widespread, and nearly every publication I read had virtually the same recital of the facts.
Simply stated, this young Muslim woman applied for a position at Abercrombie in 2011. The assistant manager felt she was an excellent candidate, but both he and the store manager were concerned that her wearing of a hijab would fail to exemplify the stores “look policy”. Her application was thus declined. Enter the EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission). The arguments of the case went back and forth on the technicalities of who knew what when. Ultimately, Elauf was awarded $20,000. The Court of Appeals overturned it, and the case wound up going all the way to the Supreme Court.
Here’s the thing that gets me. Elauf, according to her LinkedIn page, was employed by retailer Forever 21as a Visual Merchandising Manager from 2008 to 2015. So, being in the business means that she had to be familiar with the culture and style of Abercrombie; just look at their ads and their shirtless staff. Why would a girl with her upbringing and religious persuasion want to work in a store that goes against her grain? This point was also brought out by fellow blogger Pamela Geller – the woman who brought you Garland, Texas. If she was gainfully employed at the time, why did she just happen to pursue a change in jobs to Abercrombie? This year she finally did move to Urban Outfitters, but not before leaving a ruckus in her wake.
This is contrivance in its purest form. This is not a win for the freedom of religious expression. This is not a win for equal opportunity. This is not a win for social justice or discrimination. This is religion being forced down our throats. Do I approve of the style of Abercrombie? Not really. I remember the days when it was an amazing purveyor of fashion and accessories, not where a bunch of boy-toy types flaunted their hairless chests – thank goodness they’ve moved away from this. But, it makes me crazy that the Supreme Court (except for Clarence Thomas) wasn’t able to see through the ruse.
I watched the video (posted above) of former Judge Jeanie Pirro, and I fell in love – figuratively, not actually (my girlfriend would not be happy if I had). She said the words that I so often agree with – down with political correctness. It was reminiscent of the observational humor and commentary by the likes of George Carlin and Andrew Rooney – personal heroes of mine and the inspiration for my own attempt at commentary on this blog.
Pirro is absolutely correct in what she says. The First Amendment right of free speech must remain inviolate. Understandably, this comes with consequences such as when a bully maligns a weaker person with hateful words, or when slander is committed, or when supremacists spray paint swastikas on the wall of a synagogue. Our right to free speech is sometimes used as a shield of defense on certain occasions when its use is designed to taunt. I think such was the case in Garland, Texas. It probably wasn’t the best idea knowing what might happen, but in my own way I applaud Pamela Geller for having the daring to get up and throw political correctness out the window. Was it inflammatory? Yes! But damn, it felt good.
There is one thing Pirro failed to bring out in her video and one which we Americans have a tendency to ignore. If you think that the reactions of groups like ISIL, and ISIS, and Al Queda are not in direct response to our international involvement in Iraq and Libya and Syria and Iran and Afghanistan, then we should be. As we see more of our real history over the past decades unveiled, it’s plain to see that the United States is not necessarily the one always riding into battle with a white hat on. Make no mistake; we are complicit in the escalation of world tension. I do believe that we need to be the Older Brother on the block and to do what we can to aid and assist the millions of unfortunate people who suffer under the regimes of Middle Eastern and Asian dictators and extremist “organizations”, but I am also cognizant of the consequences we face in assuming that role. We are at war, and we don’t really have to worry about putting boots on the ground in foreign countries, they’re bringing it to us, and this is just the beginning.
As for the rest, I stand with Jeanie Pirro with cheers to free speech and to hell with PC!