Once again, my favorite hypocrite has outdone himself. In a WSJ article, George Will has attacked the earthshaking subject of liberal insistence on special privileges and concessions to snowflakes even if it inconveniences others.
In this case the great bugaboo is pets allowed on airplanes. Recent laws have allowed “comfort pets” to occupy a seat next to you because their owner needed reassurance. Now I am not defending that at all. Anything beyond a seeing eye dog for a blind person has no business in the passenger compartment of any public conveyance. Nobody wants a pet parakeet pooping in their pasta or Lassie licking their nuts…did I really say that?…correction: licking their roasted nuts.”
But Will, in all of his pomposity, flogs the pet monkey on a plane, whilst ignoring the 800-pound gorilla: Demands for special treatment of religious believers granted by the egregiously misnamed Religious Freedom Restoration Act. (RFRA)
Will acknowledges that the law expanding “comfort pets” on airplanes is being misused, and that it is an example of “unintended consequences.” That is true in spades with the RFRA. Both laws were passed with bipartisan majorities. In the case of the RFRA, the primary motivator was allowing Native Americans to use a prohibited drug that they had been using for centuries in their religious services. But the Religious Right saw immediately that they could use (abuse) the law outside of its original intent to oppress groups and individual actions that they disapproved of by denial of services. Pharmacy employees could refuse to dispense contraceptives, and other businesses could refuse all kinds of services to gays. Talk about unintended consequences.
But you won’t hear a word about any of this from Will, as he prattles on about pets on planes.