You need to comply with *my* sacred religious oath! Don't even talk to me, you women!

Discussion in 'Politics & Current Events' started by Explorer, Feb 28, 2015.

  1. Edika

    Edika SS.org Regular

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    I also see 1 and 2 and maybe 3. I do also agree that the request is polite, but the whole wording of it feels like a polite demand. Because if they don't facilitate the monks then this company obviously doesn't respect other religions and diversity. I can even see a successful lawsuit for discrimination as this is in the US which tends to be a bit more litigious even in trivial matters. I'm not saying they'll do it but with this letter they're covered.

    As I'm sure the company would accept the requests to avoid bad press, this means the monks get pre boarding incoveniencing other passengers and passengers need to be shifted out of their allocater seats to accommodate the monks.

    I'd also like to say that I understand your point bostjan I just don't agree with it. Respect is earned and things like these just don't fall into these category.

    On the other hand is this letter legitimate? It's easy to forge documents like these to discredit almost anyone.
     
  2. flint757

    flint757 SS.org Regular

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    I'm neither angry, upset or offended. At the end of the day I don't really care (it has no real effect on my life), but this discussion would be really boring from that perspective. :lol:

    Relax man. Disagreeing with you or something you say/how you say it is not an attempt to directly attack you. It's just discourse.
     
  3. tedtan

    tedtan SS.org Regular

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    That is my understanding of the letter. If you read it you'll notice that:

    1. The letter refers specifically to certain monks from India that will be flying on that particular day (not nuns); and
    2. Explicitly states that both monks and nuns of the Swaminarayam faith are forbidden contact with the opposite gender due to the celibacy requirements of their faith; and
    3. Requests no contact with females for those monks flying on that particular day.
    Given the above, this is a specific request on behalf of a particular group of monks, and the only logical interpretation is that if nuns had been flying that day, the letter would request that accommodations be made such that they would not have contact with males, too. But those requests were not made because they were not applicable to the situation at hand.


    I agree. The business can accommodate a relatively trivial request or not based on the circumstances at hand. I don't really see this as being any different from a group of 10 or 15 people going to lunch together and asking the restaurant to push a few tables together so they can sit together rather than having to sit at separate tables. Or going to board a plane with a guitar that I would prefer to carry on rather than check as baggage and making a request to carry it on. It doesn't really affect anyone else very much, if at all.


    I work with a number of Indian colleagues, both in there he US and overseas, and this is a typical comment when they make a request. It is just a form of formal politeness.


    I don't really see this as being sexist. It's not saying men should be separate from women because women are inferior, it is segregating genders based on a desire for celibacy and rules of their faith.

    (Don't misunderstand, India definitely does not have a culture of gender equality. And the caste system is utter bullshit, too. I just don't see either at play here).


    See my comments above regarding the specificity of the letter.


    The request was for no personal contact with members of the opposite gender (e.g., a flight attendants asking what the monks would like to drink), not general communications like the safety instructions flight attendants provide. And there was even an explicit stamen that emergency situations were an exception to the request for no personal contact. So neither the monks nor the other passengers would miss out on the safety and other emergency information.


    I don't think this is applicable as a Hindu monk would be blatantly obvious due to style of dress, hair style, etc. Do a Google image search if you don't know how these folks dress.


    Except that this isn't about women in general, it is specifically about segregating the genders due to celibacy (and like "impure thoughts") issues. I can't imagine sitting next to someone of another race to cause issues with either unless you have a race based fetish. :lol:
     
  4. asher

    asher So Did We

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    I don't see why made up rules about sexual purity get any more credence than made up rules about racial purity.
     
  5. tedtan

    tedtan SS.org Regular

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    Discrimination based on race, gender, etc. is wrong, as everyone should be equal. However, asking for special treatment in order to maintain celibacy is not discriminatory. It's about the sexual component between the genders, not gender based discrimination.

    And if we want equality for everyone, we have to learn to accept these differences between people/cultures/religions/etc. even if we don't share those differences/beliefs/etc. Otherwise there is no equality, only a new group of people trying to homogenize everyone else around them according to what they personally believe is the "right" way to look/behave/etc. And in that case, how is it any different from the religions and other discriminatory groups you and others here rail against regularly?
     
  6. asher

    asher So Did We

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    Intolerance of intolerance is not a good rabbit hole to go down here I don't think :lol:

    My beef is with the fact that the celibacy doctrines effectively lay it out like the men are completely powerless to resist or some crap without completely discarding contact and interaction. Though less so here than traditional Islam.
     
  7. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    I would be very interested to hear your reasoning behind that. I just don't see it. I am a little skeptical to see that two of you repsonded without giving reason, especially with the "maybe" part. Usually if I answer "maybe" I will expound more. Not that it is expected in general, but in this context, assuming that I do not agree, I simply think that there would be some more information explained.

    When you operate a business, respect is typically given by default to customers. Potential customers maybe not. If you were working for the airline and the letter offended you, then not. Me, I just don't see what's offensive about it, so I would have treated the request with respect. Any excuse to say "no," I would have taken it and responded respectfully declining the request.

    :scratch:

    By sexual purity, do you mean celebacy? If so, I won't speak of "credence" or truthfulness, since I'm not sure how that applies, but as far as respecting one's choice to be celebate, versus respecting one's choice to be a certain race, there really isn't any comparison, since the former is a choice and the latter is nonsense.
     
  8. vilk

    vilk Very Regular

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    saying "women can't speak to me" and saying "blacks can't speak to me" are both choices.

    also, in retrospect, I'm not sure if I see #'s 1 or 3. But 2 definitely. "Women may not communicate with us or be near us" is discriminating against women. And #3 only in that it's being institutionalized by the religion.
     
  9. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    So it's not #1 or #3.

    But it has nothing to do with devaluation or job opportunities.

    In this context, discrimination means "1.the unjust or prejudicial treatment of different categories of people or things, especially on the grounds of race, age, or sex," and "unjust" means "not based on or behaving according to what is morally right and fair." In this case, you feel it is morally wrong. I suppose morals are not universal, but it's not really a treatment, since they are simply asking to be left alone, but since it has nothing to do with their valuation of women, but rather their valuation of intimate contact in general, #2 doesn't apply anyway.
     
  10. vilk

    vilk Very Regular

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    well then I guess it comes down to whether or not you think actions speak louder than valuation
     
  11. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    But what is the action? Taking a vow of celebacy?

    Or are you refering to the person who made the request? Their action was asking for special treatment for someone else.

    IDK
     
  12. vilk

    vilk Very Regular

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    Yes, the action is taking/keeping a vow of celibacy (but I think we can all agree that this group's interpretation of the word celibacy is a little above and beyond).

    I get what you're getting at. In their hearts, they don't hate women. Or at least, as far as we know, this "vow of celibacy" doesn't necessarily imply that women are lesser than men. It's a "spiritual path"... whatever exactly that means. How can we judge them if we don't understand their gods and their rules? but if you turn up the heat and really, really boil it, it precipitates ideas like "I'm so damn holy ain't no bitch can talk to me"... or maybe, "man I loves me some god. better keep these whores away so I can evolve into a sky warrior"
     
  13. Grand Moff Tim

    Grand Moff Tim Some call me... Tim

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    So wait, is this for a flight where everyone is given their seats randomly when they get to the gate to board the plane, or is it a flight where you pick your seat when you buy your ticket? If it's the latter (which honestly, what else would it be), the author of the letter isn't just asking the airline for consideration, he's asking everyone else on the plane for consideration.

    If a monk's seat ends up being next to a woman, he's expecting that complete stranger to change the seat that they paid for (potentially for specific reasons, like proximity to safety exits, restroom, or the center of the plane) to placate his religious beliefs. He's asking another complete stranger (with the "correct"' gender) from another part of the plane to leave the seat they paid for, to come sit next to and act as go-between for someone he's never met. Multiply that by however many monks and nuns there are on the plane that end up seated next to the opposite gender, and you could be asking for quite a bit of reshuffling.

    Those strangers aren't providing a service to the airline, they're paying for a service from them. The monks and nuns are expecting complete strangers to change the terms of the service they're paying for. I can understand making a request that only effects how the company providing a service performs that service for you, but it's more than that in this case. It's potentially affect the service for everyone else on the plane.

    This isn't like a Jewish person requesting a kosher meal, and then a bunch of people being like "WTF, why should he get special treatment?!?". That sort of thing doesn't require anyone but the service provider to change anything. There's nothing wrong with asking a company if they can accommodate your beliefs somehow, as long as you aren't putting out any other paying customers.

    I suppose it's possible that somehow it ends up being that coincidentally all the monks and nuns and up sitting next to someone both of the matching gender and willing to be their middle man, or that there will be nothing but people happy to change their seats and social interaction habits to suit them, but I don't think that's entirely likely.

    Seems to me, this religious group had a few options here:

    1) Don't fly.
    2) Charter a private jet.
    3) Provide and buy seats for caretakers to travel with them.
    4) Act in a manner not in accordance with their religion (ie Deal with it).
    5) Buy seats as normal, and expect everyone else on the plane to cater to their needs.

    Obviously cost is probably an issue with most of those, but sometimes you have to pay extra to get the service you require, or go without. That's life.

    I mean, I do understand that sometimes stuff happens and people are asked to move, and sometimes they're fine with it. I was on a long-haul flight once and a mother and her child were seated in different parts of the plane because the only seats available when they purchased them weren't adjacent. The stewardess politely asked me if I was willing to change seats with the daughter so she could sit next to her mother, and I was happy to. Not everyone's a kind or reasonable person, though, so one shouldn't just assume they'll be able to find people to bend to their needs, or for service providers to force them to. It's just not sensible.

    That's what's stupid about this whole thing. To me, anyway. Not that a religious group made a special request of a company, but rather the nature of the request and its implied selfishness and lack of consideration for other customers. I hope the airline told them no can do, or at most "We'll see who on board is willing to accommodate you, but we can make no guarantees."
     
  14. asher

    asher So Did We

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    See, here I thought all of that was pretty much implied when talking about it screwing with the other passengers :scratch:
     
  15. Explorer

    Explorer He seldomly knows...

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    I believe they asked for more than just not to have service. Did you read the same letter that I posted?

    If you were reading a letter where a group just asked not to be given food and beverage service, please post a link. Otherwise, you're deliberately ignoring much more.

    Did you know that FAA laws have led to flight crews being required to visually verify the seat belts on each passenger before take-off? That's one non-emergency example of what is being argued against. If a particular flight crew doesn't have a male member, that's a problem.

    However, you in fact hit the nail on the head: "choose not pay attention."

    These monks can choose not to pay attention to the females as much as possible. That is the option which imposes the least on everyone else, especially if the monks can display their buckled seat belts to their paid male travel companion in view of the flight attendant, should the flight attendant assigned to that side of the plane happen to be female.

    Oh, dear... but what if a woman bought the window seat in that same row of three because they are going home to visit their mother in the hospital, who got there because of her father whose religious views are that women should be kept in their place and not speak unless they are spoken to? The monk decided not to buy all three seats? Why not? And now he's going to argue that the woman has to move because of religion, the same reason the woman is going to visit her mother in the hospital. :nuts:

    To me, the main thing is... why not honor someone else's religion? Because I don't feel like it, and have no obligation to honor practices which I feel insult half my friends and family. That is *my* right to my beliefs, and doesn't require anyone else to take actions for me. They can be Jews, or gay, or Christian, or Hindu, or Muslim, or even a gentle Baha'i. I'm not going to ask them to eat pork, stop being what they are, or even to throw up the horns for Satan.
     
  16. Explorer

    Explorer He seldomly knows...

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    By the way, where are all the nimrods who wrongly claim I am against Christianity, but ignore my posting about this kind of story?

    I guess ignorance sometimes has to be cultivated and protected, lest it wither from being exposed to contrary facts....
     
  17. Edika

    Edika SS.org Regular

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    I think Grand_Moff_Tim covered me completely as this is what bothered about this request and this was the point I wanted to make before I got sidetracked with all the sexism staff.
    If they want special service then pay for it and not have to incovenience everybody else in that flight that might not want to entertain their definition of the word celibacy.
     
  18. Overtone

    Overtone SS.org Regular

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    all I'm saying is I thought this forum would be more sympathetic to a bunch of guys not getting laid. All I'm saying...
     
  19. asher

    asher So Did We

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    :rofl:

    +rep
     
  20. tedtan

    tedtan SS.org Regular

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    I agree completely, but I don't see any intolerance in the original letter. What I see is a request for special treatment based on beliefs that I disagree with, but no more harmful than someone refusing to walk back to work after lunch on a certain sidewalk because a black cat had just ran across the sidewalk. Sure, if this were my friend I'd be busting his balls about it because it is nonsensical superstition, but if it were instead a stranger we had observed, my friend and I would just have a good laugh between ourselves and go on about life. No harm, no foul.


    Again, agreed.


    I get what you're saying, but if this were a flight where one chooses a seat when purchasing the ticket, why wouldn't they simply have bought adjoining seats for the monks when initially purchasing the tickets in order to avoid the situation of sitting next to a member of the opposite gender? In a worse case example in that situation, only one would end up having to deal with this unless they had waited until the last minute to purchase tickets and didn't have much to choose from. But it definitely seems that someone who cares enough to make a life commitment to this would do everything they can to address the issue themselves before asking for preferential treatment if they had the ability to do so.

    So based on the fact that they are in a position to have to make the request in the first place, it really seems to me like this was a Southwest Airlines type flight where the seating is first come, first serve upon boarding (hence the request for early boarding in order to choose seats that accommodate their requirements without troubling others any more than necessary). I may be reading into this a bit (but certainly no more than others), but if we look at the letter and imagine in what type of context the letter would make sense, this seems the most likely scenario.


    I'm not sure I agree that it is stupid to make the request when everyone involved is free to decline that request, and the more people necessary to fulfill the request, the less likely it will be fulfilled.
     

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