The Phaserl


Holding Your Nose for Principles

by Tibor Machan, The Daily Bell:

One of the difficulties with standing on principle is that often one is defending them when they are practiced by bad people. Or when bad conduct is involved. In both kinds of cases one may have no sympathy at all for the specifics but still finds it important to defend the principle, as when one defends sleazy journalists or artists against those who would want to censor them.

In England recently a couple of homosexuals won a court case that forces bread and breakfast places to rent to them even when the owners disapprove of homosexuality. And, of course, the argument advanced was all about public accommodations, as if opening one’s establishment for rent somehow committed one to accept every prospective renter. Why is that supposed to be a knock-down argument for forcing renters to rent to anyone? Presumably because commerce is a public action.

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