Originally Posted by brokencycle
My argument was that government forced people to discriminate. I used an example of a railroad company that wanted to allow a black person in a first class car with white people. That black man was arrested for violating the law. In this case, black people could have been served exactly the same as white people by the railroad company if it weren't for the law (and the railroad company did allow the man to sit in the first class car which is why he was arrested). Where are you getting lost?
I'm getting lost everywhere with your logic. Yes, in that one case, the state forced people who did not want to discriminate to discriminate. You are correct in that example from a case in the south in 1896. Extrapolating from that case the lesson that governments (entirely or primarily) discriminate, whereas private citizens and businesses do not do so, is, however, absurd. Do you think the state law reflected the minority view in the state or, rather, a majority view (such that it was enacted into law in the first place)? How does the existence of state laws of this kind invalidate the notion that we should have a FEDERAL law preempting these types of state law? Or, in the absence of these state laws, this behavior in general (assuming citizens and businesses discriminate)? You seem to divide the world into the people vs. the government and suggest it is only the one or the other acting and, because in this case a government law was to blame, government laws are therefore to blame for discrimination (without distinguishing between state and Federal law and between whether the state law enacted popular views in that place and at that time). So yes, I'm completely lost.
You said you might be of this view because you haven't been discriminated against. At least you are honest in that regard. What if you, your children, your parents, your grandparents, etc... suffered daily discrimination and prejudice on account of your skin color or ethnic background? Would you say to them, "Relax, we don't need any laws, the free market will eliminate this sort of behavior on the part of large publicly traded corporations and maybe some boycotts of local businesses can work for everything else. Let's sit back and give this 20 - 100 years or so."?