|Via KNS and Joe Powell|
The problem with the incident in Knoxville and the subsequent public response is that it’s motivated by disdain for an individual and his beliefs. The manager who tossed Campfield out and the people who have applauded her aren’t standing on some libertarian, free association principle. They’re doing so because they don’t like Stacey.Stacey Campfield also agrees with this notion that he was ejected for his thoughts, telling a Buzzfeed reporter, "if you don't think the way certain people think, then they think you don't have a right to be served."
What’s the difference, then, between refusing service to a man because you don’t like his ideas and refusing service to a man because you don’t like his skin color? Both decisions are based on a disdain for an individual.
Here's the thing. Martha Boggs would have absolutely no way of discriminating against Campfield's personal views if it weren't for the fact that he has made it his mission in life to use his position of power as an amplifier for spreading his own personal brand of verbal santorum around the state and nation.
Ideas and thoughts are the consequence of synapses firing in the brain, they happen billions of times a day to every human being. In order to know what ideas are floating around in someone's brain, they have to commit an act, be it writing or speaking, informing their fellow humans about what those ideas are.
Stacey Campfield was not denied service because of his ideas, he was denied service because of his actions. Such as, going on a radio show and saying that AIDS is the result of people getting it on with monkeys. Or actions such as sponsoring the "Don't Say Gay" bill which would prohibit teachers from allowing the word, or concept, of homosexuality to leave their lips.
Now, its all fine and dandy to have a philosophical discussion on the merits or demerits of the concept of "free association," but, as it stands right now there are protected classes against discrimination, and being an idiot is not one of them.
See Also: Cup of Joe Powell for more reactions.