Imagine if you were hired for a job but in order to be an employee you needed to provide your political voting record and/or affiliation, religious beliefs, sexual orientation and personal stance on same-sex marriage. Would you take the job? Now perhaps this is only a hypothetical question but more and more stories are surfacing that employees are losing their jobs over their personal beliefs. The scale seems tipped in favor of certain beliefs and if you are a self-proclaimed Christian the weight of the scale is not in your favor.
Recently, Craig James (a former New England Patriots player) was fired just after a week of being hired by Fox Sports Southwest as a football analyst. Apparently, a video surfaced with remarks James made during his run for U.S. Senate in 2012 regarding his religious beliefs on homosexuality. During a debate he was asked on his views on same sex marriage and he responded, “As a Christian, I cannot support unbiblical behavior, and neither should any other civil leader.” He further stated his beliefs on homosexuality by emphasizing, “I’m a guy who believes in [marriage between] a man and a woman, [and] the greatest government is occurring in a home at night between a husband and a wife, Adam and Eve, and what the Bible says.”
After these remarks surfaced and Craig James was fired, a Fox Sports spokesman told reporters, “We just asked ourselves how Craig’s statements would play in our human resources department. He couldn’t say those things here.” After receiving an e-mail from a legal advocacy group hired by James challenging religious discrimination against Fox Sports, representatives seemed to change their reasoning behind his dismissal. A Fox spokesman said, “At Fox Sports we respect all points of view, and despite reports to the contrary, the decision to no longer use Craig James in our college football coverage was simply because he was not a good fit for Fox Sports.”
Seems as if the scale of anti-discrimination was tipped against Craig James. This brings me back to 2008 when another famous sports player named Charles Barkley made negative comments against Conservative Christians. In an interview on CNN with Wolf Blitzer, Barkley called all those who were against abortion and who were pro-family “fake Christians”. Barkley had no qualms in stating that he was “pro-choice” and for “gay marriage”. These were his personal beliefs and yet I guess the human resource folks at TNT had no problems hiring Barkley as an analyst on Inside the NBA show. Barkley had made statements that he planned to run for governor of Alabama in 2014. Word to the wise for Charles Barkley, be careful about what you say in those political debates but then again the scales of discrimination tend to run in your favor.
There would be no need to write about Craig James if this was an isolated case but other stories are constantly surfacing regarding employees being fired for their personal religious beliefs regarding same sex marriage and homosexuality. Frank Turek was fired from his job as a leadership consultant at Cisco Systems. A manager at Cisco reported Turek to human resources not for any remarks he made on the job but for a book he wrote on his own time called Correct, Not Politically Correct: How Same-Sex Marriage Hurts Everyone. Frank Turek was fired the same day that he was reported to human resources. Apparently his views (although never made public in any way on the job) were inconsistent with the tolerance policies at Cisco. Again, the scales of discrimination and inclusion seem to only favor one side.
Perhaps, human resource departments need to revisit the Bill of Rights and the First Amendment before they go and make policy decisions for their work environments. Maybe it really is important to read the policy book before you take that next job. The scales of anti-discrimination and political correctness are no longer balanced and the weight of it is being felt by those in the Christian community. What is tolerance and if we are only tolerant of one view how will the scales ever be balanced?