Some Businesses Have Dress Codes and This Is Discriminatory

While I’m not the biggest fan of the language used in the Arizona SB-1062 bill that was passed in our state legislature (for one thing, why should only religious people get protection?) but the fact is that discrimination in clientele is nothing new (or wrong) for businesses.

I used to work security in a busy privately owned district near a college. Not only was it regularly made clear to us (and I only worked there a little over a month) that the rules we enforced where there to keep a certain type of “riffraff” off the streets and that our enforcement need not target the non-homeless, but many of the nightclubs and other venues in the area had dress codes as well. I spent most of my 8 hour shift walking up and down the street, giving directions, reporting crimes, and telling off homeless people for sitting on the sidewalk…in other words I had a lot of time to read every single sign on every single storefront and club. One of the clubs in particular had a dress code that was pretty damn specific and clearly targeting men in it’s “no tank tops, no baggy jeans, no flip flops” rules of dress.

Hot girls got in, flip-flops or no flip-flops, let me tell you.

But hey, it’s no skin off my nose and as far as I know there hasn’t been a lawsuit levied against a night club over their “discrimination” against clientele.

They cater to a certain set and they want a certain type of clientele in their business. Sure it might hurt their bottom line a little, but maybe not. I’ve learned that people tend to like going to a club where their are rules and exclusions, it makes them feel special just for getting in the door, but the real point is that no one really disputed the club’s right to deny service to those that did not come dressed to their specifications.

The same thing occurs in some of the more expensive restaurants. Dresses, sport coats, and ties can all be required to let someone dine in a restaurant.

You would never question the “No Shirt, No Shoes, No Service” sign on a storefront even though it’s not actually an issue regulated by the state Health Department in most cases. Yup, that’s right, these stores are discriminating against the barefoot and shirtless, not because the state requires them to do so, but because they see these rules as being better for business.

Why is it an acceptable level of discrimination for these types of businesses to discriminate against their clientele, but not for an Orthodox Jew to request people dress modestly in their store?

The “I shouldn’t have to bow to their religious/moral/fashion views” idea doesn’t fly either, because no 5 star rated restaurant is going to seat me in torn up jeans and flip flops because “I shouldn’t have to wear a dress to eat a 5 star meal.”

They don’t care, that’s their rule and I can go screw myself (that’s an approximate translation of the facial expression the maître d’ would have on his face if I said that) if I think they are going to change because I don’t think their rule is fair.

It’s their business and they don’t want my money enough to change the type of clientele they cater to. There is an all night diner down the street that would take my money if I insisted on eating with a paper bag on my head.

Different strokes for different folks as they say.

Now I might be annoyed at the rules in any of the establishments I mentioned, but I’m hardly going to sue them over it, because, after all, they have the right to refuse service if they want too. It’s their business and I don’t have a right to their service, just because I have money.

This same rule should apply to any private business, as I’ve said before, whether they are discriminating because they are snooty French restaurants or jerky religious or racist business owners.

Get over it.

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12 Comments

    • Not different at all, it’s not a matter of how easy it is for me to change to fit the business’ rules, it’s a matter of whether or not the business has the right to deny service…which they do.
      No man has the right to another man’s labor, that’s slavery. Even if they are offering their labor and you offer to buy it, if they don’t like you for some reason you don’t have the right to force them to work for you.

    • Secondarily, I am not saying that what a business owner does is right or that I would still go to that store if they were to discriminate against someone for sexuality or race, but they have the right to make that decision…even if it hurts their profit margin because of boycotts.
      It’s bad business sense, but who am I to tell them they must run their business the way I would.
      Also you are making the grave mistake that this law somehow targets gay people, it does not. It’s only a couple of pages long, please actually read it. I may not like the phrasing of it in some ways, but it’s in no way targeting a specific group. As it stands this law would let a religious store owner deny service to a neo-nazi just as readily as a gay person.

  1. Hmmm- this is complicated. I suppose, as a business owner, I tend to agree that I should have the ‘right’ to deny service. But as a human being, I’ve never been in a situation where I could see myself saying “I don’t take ‘people like you’ as clients”.
    There’s something in very bad taste about this as a legal or social concept. And just on a practical level it’s bad business, so I think it’s just Tarzan chest thumping.
    In this economy I wouldn’t turn away an Eastern European dictator…

    • Of course you or I wouldn’t. I’m a strict capitalist and unless someone was hurting my business (being a nuisance to more than a few paying customers) I wouldn’t refuse to serve them.
      I can only think of a bare handful of cases in which I might refuse service to someone on other grounds that would be “discriminatory” however and I should retain that right and so should anyone else, no matter if I think it’s a foolish business decision. That’s not my decision to make if I’m not the owner or a stockholder.

        • The bill provides businesses protection from lawsuits, it doesn’t (to my knowledge, I’ve read the bill several times) restrict the actions of an employer against a employee that is going against company policy.

          As for my personal belief on this, the owner is the one who is making decisions on company policy and the person whose bottom line would be affected, monetarily.

  2. I have to say it. As a gay man who is 52 years old and who has been out since he was 16 years old, and who is happliy agnostic — I am f**cking sick of gay people and their f**cking problems. Their desperate search for love and approval is nauseating. Their narcissism is profound. Their hysteria is repellent. Their pseudo-intellectual posing to mask a puerile hatred of religion, and their desire for its destruction “by any means possible,” is now beyond polite tolerance. Apparently, being a member of a “protected class” in many states has given them the supposed “right” to bludgeon struggling businesses run by family husband-and-wife partnerships, or old church ladies with a modest talent for baking. This speaks volumes about the mindset of gays, Democrats and Progressives. For years they have smugly announced, “This was never an Ozzie and Harriet country,” and now they have found a means to destroy it completely and righteously preen about their victory under “the law.” They are nothing more than the fanatic True Believers that Eric Hoffer so concisely described in that book’s chapter entitled “The Misfits.” Technically speaking, since I no longer have sex, then I am no longer gay. And I can’t tell you how very relieved I am to come to that blissful realization.

    • Congrats for leaving the gay club! Extra-special congrats to whomever was spared having to marry you!!!
      Gay people own businesses too, btw. We employ people, we pay salaries, we pay taxes. Never ending effing taxes. It’s like every other week there’s a new tax.
      Anyway, I know it may be hard to believe that anyone who looks great has time to come up for air, but it does happen- quite often. Our gayness doesn’t define our politics, intelligence, career choices or anything else, it’s just gayness. I’ve met gay geniuses and gay idiots- as I’ve met straight geniuses and straight idiots.
      I think you fall under the category of gay people who need the assistance of a professional. As you’re no longer spending money on condoms, save up and get some help! 🙂

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