Hacker News new | past | comments | ask | show | jobs | submit login

> A majority of the US population was tolerant of refusing service to ...

But the refusal of service to certain specific races itself is intolerance. That is precisely what Popper's view is: tolerance (by the majority of Americans) of intolerance (towards non-whites) is bad.




What about certain sports teams who deny half of the population a chance from playing? They justify it with notions of biological differences, but in what other setting is that an acceptable justification?

There is also the difference in refusal to serve and refusal to provide a specific service. If you are willing to serve a group but not provide them with a service that you also refuse to provide others, even when the service has a strong corollary with a service you do provide, it is seen as a different matter than refusing to serve a group. This is seen in both the bakery case and the waxing case.


I do not see how any of the examples you cite are comparable.

Biological differences in performance have scientific basis. Racism does not.

I do not know which specific bakery or waxing cases you are referring to, there seem to be more than one such case. But I will try to clarify my position with a corollary:

Say I'm at a bar with a friend who is an observant Muslim. They are offered a complimentary drink by the bartender, who happens to be non-muslim. If my friend declines the drink because they think it is alcoholic, I will think no less of them. But if they decline the drink because of the bartender being non-muslim, I will certainly think less of my friend. In either case, it does not matter if the drink does or does not contain alcohol; only what my friend thinks.


>Biological differences in performance have scientific basis.

Yet I still can't actually use these to discriminate in most cases.

>Racism does not.

Not sure how this is comparable to the previous statement. The use of 'differences in performance' in one side and a -ism on the other indicate we aren't comparing apples to apples.

>Say I'm at a bar with a friend who is an observant Muslim. They are offered a complimentary drink by the bartender, who happens to be non-muslim. If my friend declines the drink because they think it is alcoholic, I will think no less of them. But if they decline the drink because of the bartender being non-muslim, I will certainly think less of my friend. In either case, it does not matter if the drink does or does not contain alcohol; only what my friend thinks.

So it seems the judgment is based off of the material and not the person. In that case, it seems similar to the case of the bakery as the customer was free to order any existing product. The waxing case isn't as simple, because the item relevant to the drink in that case was part of the person's body, and thus innately linked to the concept of who the individual is in a way the drink is not.


> Yet I still can't actually use these to discriminate in most cases.

Yes, you can. If you can prove a scientific basis, you can. A scientific basis is not a low bar, mind you, but if you can clear it, you absolutely can, as many of us do (from cosmetics to drug trials and prescriptions to even market investments).

> The use of 'differences in performance' in one side and a -ism on the other indicate we aren't comparing apples to apples.

Forgive me, I believed it was obvious that 'racism' in this context stood for 'differences in treatment by race'.

> So it seems the judgment is based off of the material and not the person.

You appear to have misread my point. Perhaps I wasn't clear enough. Let me reproduce the essential parts:

"... because of the bartender being non-muslim ..."

and added clarification:

" ... does not matter if the drink ...; only what my friend thinks of the bartender"


>Forgive me, I believed it was obvious that 'racism' in this context stood for 'differences in treatment by race'.

The problem it is that it prejudges no such situations could exist. For example, one that would be easy enough to defend is that communities are better served by a doctor who shares the same race as the community because the members are more willing to follow the doctor's advice. This is why having enough black doctors to serve black communities can be argued to be a good thing, despite it being discrimination based on race. But past personal experience has taught me that the agreeableness of such judgment can changes when swapping to a so called majority group.

>You appear to have misread my point. Perhaps I wasn't clear enough. Let me reproduce the essential parts:

Let me rephrase my point because I think I may have compacted it too much.

Your judgment depends upon your friends judgment being based on the material and not the person. That is to say, if you have reason to believe you friend is judging based on the person (the server being non-Muslim), you will view them negatively, but if you believe that their judgment is based on the material (thinking the drink has alcohol) you won't judge them negatively. Thus, you judgment of the friend's discrimination against the drink depends upon why they discriminate against the drink. If they did so because of a property of the drink it is fine. Does this correctly match your view?


> For example, one that would be easy enough to defend ...

I'm sorry, but at this point, I think you're being pedantic. I have no interest in that here, and while I could have been exhaustively thorough in my original statement, I just didn't think I needed to and thus chose to be terse. I continue to believe I was clear then, and also believe that in the example you cite here a scientific basis (either for or against) can be clearly tested and observed.

> Thus, you judgment of the friend's discrimination against the drink ...

No. My point is I do not judge my friend on their discrimination against the drink. I judge my friend on their discrimination against the person. The drink is just an object, it's only purpose is in being 'not a person'. Replace it with anything else (say, something edible, or, a greeting) and my point still stands.

> If they did so because of a property of the drink it is fine.

No, that doesn't matter. If they did so because of the time of day, or their mood, or the colour of their shirt that day, would be the same. The difference lies in whether they did so because of the person offering.




Applications are open for YC Winter 2020

Guidelines | FAQ | Support | API | Security | Lists | Bookmarklet | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact

Search: