I came across this alarmist item from a right-leaning anti-sharia blog:
Wegman’s has put up a sign asking customers buying pork or alcohol not to use a particular checkout line when a Muslim teenager is on duty as the cashier. … If you dont want to handle meat that’s not halal, work for a Muslim butcher. Don’t take a job at Wegman’s, Wal-mart or Target. But it is not about that. It’s about imposing Islam on non-Muslims. Special accommodations for a “special class.” This is part of a systematic campaign to impose the sharia on the secular marketplace.
It’s not ok and should not be tolerated. If you want to live in an Islamic country you are free to do so. The overwhelming majority of Americans do not want to live under sharia law. Contact Wegmans and your elected officials.
Now, I obviously support the separation of church and state. And as a woman, I like being able to drive a car, choose my spouse, and wear whatever I damn well please. So if someone tries to supplant our Constitution with sharia law, I will fight that person tooth and nail.
But that is clearly light years away from what is happening here. This is a teenage grocery cashier exercising her freedom of conscience, and she is doing it in a way that is respectful of others’ rights. Good for her! When this blog author writes that the kid shouldn’t have taken a job at Wegman’s, I can’t help but be reminded of those who say “If you’re pro-life, you shouldn’t have gone into medicine.”
Naturally, I find the objection to participation in abortions much easier to understand than the objection to pork and alcohol. But the whole point of conscience rights is that you get to exercise them even if your position seems nonsensical to others.
Last month, religious conservatives across the country staged protests against the HHS rule that requires Catholic institutions to include contraception in their insurance plans, against their religious scruples. I hope that they show the same enthusiasm for future conscience situations: whether it’s an atheist medical student who refuses to take a course on abortion, or a young Muslim who politely asks customers to take their pork chop to another lane.