Dear Fair Housing Center of West Michigan,
I am writing to express my concern over a recent civil rights complaint that has been filed against a woman who posted an advertisement at her church last July. Apparently, you were upset that she was seeking a Christian roommate. I came to that conclusion after reading the following in the complaint you recently filed against her: "(The ad) expresses an illegal preference for a Christian roommate, thus excluding people of other faiths.”
As someone who is preparing to move to Grand Rapids, I am concerned about your complaint. I’m not concerned about the Christian woman. I’m concerned about myself. Let me explain.
Because of recent financial hardships I have had to take a job in Michigan and, for the same reasons, I am going to have to seek a roommate. I want to live with a woman. Not just any woman but, preferably, a really sexually promiscuous one. In order to increase the chances that she’ll be promiscuous I am specifically demanding that she be a practitioner of Heathenism, just like me.
But now I have read a Fox News story that quotes your Executive Director Nancy Haynes as saying "It's a violation to make, print or publish a discriminatory statement. There are no exemptions to that." Director Haynes statement is incorrect because there is, in fact, an exemption for gender when there is a shared living space. I plan to take advantage of that by discriminating on the basis of gender. I’ll seek women only and, of course, demand that the woman I choose shares a bedroom with me throughout the duration of our relationship.
I am concerned that Director Haynes has said that, depending on the outcome of the case, the Christian woman could face several hundreds of dollars in fines and fair housing training to prevent it from happening again. I don’t want to face the same prospect.
Harold Core, director of public affairs with the Michigan Department of Civil Rights, recently told the Grand Rapids Press that the Fair Housing Act prevents people from publishing an advertisement stating their preference of religion with respect to the sale or rental of a dwelling. And he made no distinction between an owner-placed ad and one placed by a prospective occupant.
Joel Oster, an attorney with the Alliance Defense Fund (ADF) is representing the Christian woman free of charge. He says this case is simply "outrageous." So I plan to call the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) to see if they will defend my right to live with a promiscuous heathen woman. I know they would not represent me if I were seeking a Christian roommate. Thank Government Almighty they aren’t morally consistent!
“Clearly you have a right to pick and choose who you want to live with," said an attorney for the ACLU I spoke with on Friday. "Heathens shouldn't live in fear of being punished by the government for being Heathens. It is completely absurd to try to penalize a single Heathen man for privately seeking a Heathen roommate at a bar - an obviously legal and constitutionally protected activity." I sincerely hope there will be no complaint when I take out an ad in some of my favorite bars in Grand Rapids. And I hope no one will contact the local fair housing organization. My ad will include the words, "Heathen roommate wanted," along with my contact information. I believe that as a prospective occupant (who owns no rental property) my ad can include the word "Heathen” and still remain legal. Joel Oster said he hopes the case will eventually be dropped and that he's sent a letter to the State of Michigan asking the authorities to dismiss the case as groundless. According to Fox News, he also said,
"The First Amendment guarantees us Freedom of Religion. And we have the right to live with someone of the same faith. The Michigan Department of Civil Rights is denying her rights by pursuing this complaint."
I agree with Oster, not just as a matter of general principle but because I generally love promiscuous heathen women. And I am profoundly disappointed that Director Haynes said that officials plan on pursuing the matter.
You can’t make me live with a virgin Christian any more than you can make me live with a homosexual Buddhist. I hope you’ll reconsider your decision. And I’ll sue you if you don’t.
Note to Neal Boortz: You have just finished reading a social satire - assuming you had time to read this far down. I sincerely hope you understood what you read.
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