Two Guys Walk Into A Bar - And Get Refused Service ...

Two Guys Walk Into A Bar - And Get Refused Service ...

By Jeff Wagner. CREATED Feb 24, 2014

As a general rule, you can refuse service to someone for any reason or no reason - just not for an illegal reason.

Accordingly if WTMJ was to decide not to allow ads for strip joints to run during my show, there would be no legal issue.  If, on the other hand, we rejected advertising for a specific strip joint because of the ethnic background of the owner, there would be an issue.

Some people view same-sex marriage as the defining cvil rights issue of the day.  For others, same-sex marriage is contrary to their religiopus beliefs and therefore unacceptable.

Most states that allow same-sex marriage have exemptions for religious organizations.  In other words, a Catholic Church couldn't be forced to perform a wedding ceremony.  At the same time, the exemptions generally do not apply to private businesses or individuals.

Within the next two weeks, the Governor of Arizona will decide whether or not to sign a law which would allow private citizens and businesses to refuse to provide services to gay couples based on religious beliefs.

As a pratical matter, this would mean that a florist could refuse to provide flowers for a same-sex wedding and a baker could refuse to make a wedding cake for a same-sex couple.

Nobody would argue that a restaurant should be able to refuse service to a couple because of their race.  Is this different?

We'll discuss the matter during the 1 p.m. hour to Monday's radio show.  Please feel free to share your thoughts in the Comments section - and be sure to check back later to hear a replay of the segment!

Jeff Wagner

Jeff Wagner

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Jeff Wagner recently completed his 15th year as a talk show host at 620 WTMJ. Jeff's show, which airs Monday through Friday from noon to 3 p.m., features stories which you might not have heard about elsewhere and emphasizes Jeff's common sense approach to issues.