Color coding taxis?
Reader comment on item: Don't Bring That Booze into My Taxi
Submitted by Les Lieberman (United States), Oct 10, 2006 at 16:22
I sent the following comments to the Metropolitan Airports Commission:
To the committee,
This is in response to the information I received concerning the proposed change to the working conditions of volunteer taxi drivers clustering about the airport, seeking fares. (www.danielpipes.org/article/4046)
It is sad for me to think that a person who is allowed to take a job licensed by the community is then able to dictate what he will or will not do on that job. I wish I would have had that luxury on my job. It sounds like the tail wagging the dog! To allow taxi drivers to pick their clients based not on the community necessity which created their job to begin with, but on some personally held bias is tantamount to buying a house near the airport and then suing the airport because of the noise!
If a taxi driver has a problem picking up fares at the airport based on the contents of a fare's luggage (in this case, alcohol), then perhaps that taxi driver should station his taxi outside the nearest mosque! Masquerading as a provider of taxi service to the citizens of this country means that taxi service should be given. If someone is not willing to provide that service to any given person who approaches and is able and willing to pay for these services indicates to me that the service provider, for whatever reason, is in the wrong business! I suggest he or she look for employment in an industry more accommodating to his or her personal philosophies.
This is not prejudice. It is an open acknowledgment of the rights of people to pick their work, but having made their choice, they should then be expected to live up to the non-prejudicial standards of that work. To allow a taxi driver to refuse fares based on the contents of the fares' luggage is similar to a doctor going to work for a planned parent clinic and refusing to perform abortions because of his or her personal feelings. That doctor should also seek another place to work, one more amenable to his or her preferences.
A kosher butcher should not be expected to provide non-believers pork chops, so that butcher should not go to work in a general supermarket. He should seek out a kosher market.
A person who does not speak or write Spanish should not seek work in a high school as a Spanish Teacher! If that person is fluid in French, he or she does not have the right to teach French in a class labeled Spanish One!
Accommodation of individual differences is fine, insofar as it does not change the very nature of the job sought. Enlarge a new doorway in a business to allow wheelchairs entrance? Fine! Require an elevator to allow that same wheelchair access to the second floor? Unreasonable.
A person who is against the use of force should not enlist in the Army! A person who cannot swim and is afraid of the water should not seek work as a lifeguard! Or should the Army conduct cake sales and the pool be emptied?
There is reality. If a job requires a person to do something repugnant or otherwise unacceptable to that person, he or she should not take the job which requires the application of repugnant or unacceptable activity. It is not the responsibility of the secular, non-religious community to adapt to that minority -- but rather it is the responsibility of that minority to adapt to the larger community. To expect otherwise is simply unacceptable.
To accommodate taxi drivers as you are planning to do appears to me to fall under the "Unacceptable" category. If the taxi driver can refuse to take people with alcohol, can they also refuse to take people who offend their religious teachings in other ways, too? What about people who just ate prohibited foods, engaged in prohibited acts or have different values?
My friends, the slippery slope DOES exist. Please do not add a plank or wax to it by enacting this ill-thought out compromise.
I would be interested in your final decision. I have taken the opportunity of sharing my comments with friends, and I invite their participation in this discussion.
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