Denver Post: In Mother Russia, Contracts Make You.
“It is not unusual for merchants to deal with people whose values or behavior they disapprove of. If you’re in business, though, you have a *duty* to sell your wares to all comers.”
After all, your product is not your own. You don’t own your labor. You will work under the conditions the government demands, and for the persons the government requires, or government men with guns will come to your home, bind you, gag you, and throw you into a dungeon.
As it turns out, liberty imposes no duties – forced regulations do that. Do not confuse yourself with the fiction of a social contract – as a contract must be entered into by all parties knowingly, and voluntarily.
What you see in the popular backlash against this baker is the free market at work – providing an opening for an open-minded baker to make money by selling open-minded cakes. Instead of using the freedom of the market, the offended persons here chose to force a free person, at gunpoint, to accept their money for his involuntary services. Why not just pay an open-minded baker who shares your views? Why not reward a good person?
I actually agree that this case analogizes to businesses who refuse service based on race or gender or other stupid, inappropriate discriminatory choices. The market solves these problems because every person turned away is a customer for a merchant who doesn’t discriminate. And people who don’t discriminate end up with more customers and more money.
Problems within commerce can be solved voluntarily, without having to imprison persons who refuse to be slaves to someone else’s ethos, regardless of government value-judgments as to who is ‘right.’
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- Judge orders Colo. cake-maker to serve gay couples (denverpost.com)