A Hawkins man is claiming his civil rights and religious freedom were violated earlier this year when a black man sacked his groceries and a Big Sandy grocery store owner banned the customer from the business.
DeWitt R. Thomas filed a federal lawsuit in July against Keith Langston, owner of Two Rivers Grocery & Market.
According to the lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in Tyler, Thomas entered the market on March 5 to buy food.
He stated in a nine-page, hand-written lawsuit that he told the grocery sacker, a black man, “Wait a minute, don’t touch my groceries. I can’t have someone negroidal touch my food. It’s against my creed.”
Thomas claimed the cashier was “perplexed” by his request and yelled at him to take his items and leave.
In a telephone interview Wednesday, Thomas said, “It’s pretty simple. They treated me really bad because I told them it was against my creed.”
Now, so far at least in the last 50 years or so, the courts have been pretty damn clear that a person's civil rights beats racist "religious freedom to be racist" baloney when you openly claim you have the religious freedom to violate another person's civil rights.
But this is Texas, and this jackass is literally making a federal case over it. And so we have a case now where one person is claiming his religious freedom of creed is being violated by having a black person bag his groceries. The more you think about this, the more obvious that it becomes that if religious freedom has its limits, and must, or one could conceivably violate any law and claim persecution under religious beliefs.
But there are a number of Republicans who have openly said that the Civil Rights Act needs to be abolished, and that civil rights simply don't exist. Would this become the test case to do so? That's what worries me. It would have three votes in SCOTUS almost assuredly, if not four, to void the entire law. Remember, the conservatives on the court had no problem completely annihilating the Affordable Care Act because of what they proclaimed was a legal technicality, and John Roberts basically saved the law out of not being the man who rolled back the clock.
I don't know if he has another one of those in him, either. So yeah, as moronic as this sounds, the SCOTUS conservatives would find a way to ignore precedent and side with Mr. Negroid Touchin' Ma Groceries here if it meant the end of the Civil Rights Act.
Keep an eye on this case.