Sheila Hagar’s article regarding Sen. Mike Hewitt and his staff in the Thursday edition of the U-B is notable for various reasons.
The first is that paragraph 2 needs the word “passes” added at the end; paragraph 9 needs to eliminate the words “as it”; and paragraph 16 should have “and” changed to “an.”
The other reasons are what is reported to have been Sen. Hewitt’s comments.
It is worrisome that Sen. Hewitt said, “I probably did not read the bill as well as I should have. “ Yet, he supported it.
This indicates a general trend with lawmakers who let staffers and lobbyists write legislation resulting in unintended consequences. Presumably he will sign it.
An even more worrisome remark is the one he made about the “silent minority” thanking him.
What about the silent minority who don’t support his beliefs? He seems to consider them unimportant compared to the other silent minority.
The article claims Sen. Hewitt believes the bill “seeks to ensure the right of business owners to exercise their religious or philosophical beliefs when doing business.”
Business is supported well enough in this country. Businesses have substantially better bankruptcy rights than do individual citizens and businesses receive immense subsidies in various ways that are not considered appropriate for ordinary citizens.
And business is supported in many more ways otherwise denied to citizens. Business is and has been well supported by government since the country’s founding.
A final worry is his use of the word “philosophical.”
Does that include one’s political beliefs? If so, then we are on a very slippery slope.
Can a business, an entity defined by the state, with privileges not generally available to citizens, refuse to serve me because I am a Democrat, Republican, Libertarian, etc.? What about being Irish, or Vietnamese or some other nationality?
Where does “philosophical” stop?
Sen. Hewitt should stop serving his own beliefs and ask the citizens what theirs are?
His final remarks remind me of the old saying, Some of my best friends are (fill in the blank), thus allegedly indicating no prejudice against the named group.
I wonder about trusting his representation in our Legislature.