Man Suing Grocery Store For Banning Him After He Refused a "Negroid" Bagger: Freedom of Religion, Property Rights, and the Right to Refuse Service
Where can the idea of expansive positive rights that require the abrogation of fundamental negative rights end? With absurdity like this, via the Longview News-Journal in Texas:
A Hawkins man is claiming his civil rights and religious freedom were violated earlier this year when a black man sacked his groceries and a Big Sandy grocery store owner banned the customer from the business…
[Dewitt Thomas] stated in a nine-page, hand-written lawsuit that he told the grocery sacker, a black man, "Wait a minute, don't touch my groceries. I can't have someone negroidal touch my food. It's against my creed."
Thomas claimed the cashier was "perplexed" by his request and yelled at him to take his items and leave.
In a telephone interview Wednesday, Thomas said, "It's pretty simple. They treated me really bad because I told them it was against my creed."
…The sacker, Aaron Menefee, said he thought Thomas was just kidding around.
"The first time he said it, I thought he was joking," Menefee said. "Then he just kept repeating it."
Menefee said once he realized Thomas was serious, he called for someone else to sack the groceries, at which time Menefee went to another part of the store…
When Thomas returned two days later, he noticed the same black man would be sacking his groceries, so he again requested the "Negro" not handle his groceries, according to the lawsuit.
This time, Langston was there. He called police to serve Thomas a criminal trespass warning. While waiting for the police, an employee locked the doors, and the lawsuit claims Thomas was "unlawfully restrained."
Thomas said Langston broke the law the night he locked him in the store.
"We were closing, and I don't know of a business that doesn't lock their doors when they close. It keeps more people from coming in," Langston said.
Thomas said he doesn't understand why he had to deal with the same situation twice.
"My question is, why after I told them how I felt and that it was against my creed did this negroid try to impress himself upon me and try to handle my groceries again." Thomas said…
Thomas said he is going forward with his complaint because Langston has no right to stand against what he believes in.
"If he wants to stand in opposition of who I am, then we are going to go forward with this here thing," Thomas said.
Meanwhile, in a response to a lawsuit against the birth control mandate by private companies, the Department of Justice argued the freedom of religion includes not having your employer impose their religious beliefs on you, the employer's freedom of religion and the voluntary nature of employment contracts be damned. Seriously.