In February 2021, two female flight attendants for Alaska Airlines, both Christians, read a company statement on an internal forum supporting the problematic Equality Act in Congress, as well as the company’s invitation to its employees to comment on that statement.
When the pair responded with questions about the wisdom of the company’s support, such as “As a company, do you think it’s possible to regulate morality?” and “Does Alaska [Airlines] support endangering the Church, encouraging suppression of religious freedom, obliterating women’s rights and parental rights?” they were fired.
The company claimed that the women’s comments were “discriminatory,” “hateful” and “offensive.” Just for asking questions.
The two women, Marli Brown and Lacey Smith, are now suing the airline and the employees’ union, with the assistance of attorneys from First Liberty Institute.
“Alaska Airlines ‘canceled’ Lacey and Marli because of their religious beliefs, flagrantly disregarding federal civil rights laws that protect people of faith from discrimination,” said Stephanie Taub, Senior Counsel for First Liberty Institute, in a press release.
“It is a blatant violation of state and federal civil rights laws to discriminate against someone in the workplace because of their religious beliefs and expression. ‘Woke’ corporations like Alaska Airlines think that they do not have to follow the law and can fire employees if they simply don’t like their religious beliefs.”
The federal employment nondiscrimination law known as Title VII prohibits employers from discriminating against their employees on the basis of religion. Brown and Smith allege in the Complaint filed in federal district court in Washington state that the airline did just that, and that the employees’ union – the Association of Flight Attendants (AFA) – also discriminated against them by failing to live up to its obligation to defend the women against the airline’s actions.
“Despite Alaska Airlines’ claimed commitment to an inclusive culture and its frequent invitations to employees to dialogue and express a diversity of perspectives, Alaska Airlines created a work environment that is hostile toward religion, and AFA reinforced that company culture,” the Complaint reads.
“Alaska Airlines and AFA cannot wield their social advocacy as a sword to unlawfully discriminate against religious employees and instead must remain mindful of their legal obligation to ‘do the right thing’ towards all employees, including religious employees. The Court must hold Alaska Airlines and the AFA accountable for their discrimination.”
The Equality Act, passed in the U.S. House of Representatives but defeated in the Senate, is aggressively anti-religious in its aim to protect so-called LGBT rights. By re-defining “sex” to include homosexuality and gender identity, and eliminating well-established religious freedom protections, the Equality Act would result in:
- Single-sex facilities, such as dressing rooms, showers and restrooms, would be open to those who believe they are or claim to be the opposite sex – putting privacy and safety at risk.
- Businesses would be forced to support events and ideas they disagree with – or lose discrimination lawsuits.
- Shelters for women who have suffered emotional and physical abuse from men would be open to biological men who believe they are women.
- Faith-based foster care and adoption agencies that believe children deserve a mother and father would be forced to place children with same-sex couples or shut down.
- Medical providers could be forced to violate their beliefs and provide drugs, hormones and surgeries for those “transitioning” to the opposite sex.
- Businesses and faith-based groups could be forced to provide insurance coverage for contraceptives and abortions – against their deeply held beliefs.
- Biological men who believe they are women would be able to compete in women’s sports at every level, from school to amateur to professional.
- The act would regulate“thought, belief and speech,” requiring people to assent to “new beliefs about human identity” that are contrary to their faith and beliefs.
- Parents who do not support their child’s gender confusion could lose custody of their children because of their “discriminatory” beliefs.
- School children would be introduced to transgender ideology and concepts such as sexual orientation as early as pre-school – often over the beliefs of parents.
- Teachers would be forced to comply with this agenda, or risk losing their jobs.
- Ministries that provide counseling and support for those with unwanted homosexuality or gender confusion would risk discrimination lawsuits.
Add to this, the fact that so-called “trans rights” is indeed the wholesale cancelation of womanhood as a class. In addition to federal claims, the women also allege that the actions of Alaska Airlines and AFA violated Oregon and Washington nondiscrimination laws.
The case is Brown v. Alaska Airlines.
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