Believers in the Bible, and the God revealed between its covers, are often, at some point in some conversation with some individual who has doubts or criticisms about that God and what he commands of those who would dare to follow His defined precepts about the issue of SLAVERY. Indeed, the bible does take issue with conditions of servitude, those both VOLUNTARY and INVOLUNTARY, making well defined positions for both issues. But my primary target for this brief treatise is not that ancient condition, but the modern version which has been thrust upon the citizens of this nation in recent years.
This new and pervasive form of slavery, is not one enforced by chains of iron, but by the point of judicial edict. For many months now a case has been winding its way through the New Mexico supreme court, a case that would ultimately define for New Mexico whether or not conscience is the ultimate arbiter of service in regards to whether or not a privately owned business, a photographer, could be forced to provide a service, taking photographs, of an event, namely a homosexual wedding. The defense based its case on the business owner’s moral objection, and to reasonable people that would be reason enough, but it has become obvious we are no longer dealing with reasonable people. Indeed, the court sympathized with the owner’s objection, even affirming the right of a person to hold objections, even to make them public; however, the court decided that the business owner had no right to act in accordance with her moral conviction and refrain from participating, even as a HIRED party. I necessarily find we must turn to a dictionary to sort out some logic on this issue.
Hire– (verb) to employ someone for wages
Slave– (noun) a person who is the legal property of another and is forced to obey them
Slavery– (noun) the state of one bound in servitude as the property of a slaveowner or household
Enslave– (verb) to make into or as if a slave
Involuntary (adjective, 2nd def.) to do against one’s will; compulsary
Now, take a moment and let those definitions sink into your concious mind, as I endeavor to unpack the situation we are finding ourselves in. In New Mexico, for the moment, you can disagree and be vocal about it, but you must go along with the party engaging you.
Probably you are wondering how and why I am comparing this ruling to slavery of some form, but I’m asking you to think for a moment. When you HIRE a person to do a job, or a job is offered for consideration, that person has the inherent freedom to choose whether or not to engage in that field of employment; this inherent freedom is what the founders of this nation defined in our birth certificate, the Declaration of Independence, as the right to life (to live, without undue intereference, in a manner worthy of your moral dignity as a bearer of the image of God), liberty (to be free to enjoy that moral dignity), and happiness (an archaic term for the ability to work and gain property without undue interference). If that person, to whom the job is offered, in his/her reasoning, finds that the terms of that employment binds their conscience in such a way that their inherent rights could be violated in excess of reason, they not only have the right to refuse that offer of employment, but a duty to their own selves. It must be stated that when a person engages in employment to another person, they do agree to give up a measure of their absolute liberty; but the employer is then also bound to not place their hired hand into a position where their conscience would be overly burdened in recognition of those inherent rights. When a potential employer disregards those rights, which are defined as “endowed by our Creator”, he/or she devalues the potential hire, transforming them from an equal who has rights, and with those rights a defined responsibility, to nothing more than a piece of property meant to be shaped for their own hapiness thus making their employee a de facto slave.
This, I am afraid, is where we are headed if we continue to embrace a lifestyle that is devoid of individual dignity and embraces behaviors that put its participants in risk, not only of their lives, but their very souls.