It’s Still Green, Right?

The Religious Freedom Restoration Act coming out of Indiana has been ruffling feathers all over the country for the last week or so.

One of the great aspects of our government and our culture is the freedom to think and believe as we see fit. Even if what we think and believe is contrary to our neighbor’s thoughts and beliefs.

The grey area in this topic comes into play when we add in the idea of one group feeling discriminated against by another group.

Before I go any further, I need to state that I am not and I have never been a business owner.

That does not mean that I agree with the ideas that are attached to this specific piece of legislation. If a business owner refuses to provide a product or a service because the customer is part of the LGBTQ community, that is their right.  As some of my  readers know, I have a professional background in customer service. A negative review or opinion of the business can sometimes travel faster and farther than a positive review or opinion of the business. If one customer is turned away or feel discriminated against, that could possibly create a ripple effect, which could end up hurting more people than the individual customer.

At the end of the day, no law can force a business owner to serve a customer. It is the right of the business owner to tell the customer that for whatever reasons they have, they will not be able to assist them.

But that does not mean that turning down the business will help the business owner either.

I’m going to end with a short clip from last weekend’s Saturday Night Live, which as always, hits the nail on the head every time.


Marine Park Stories Book Review

Write what you know is one of the more common pieces of advice that writers will often hear.

Marine Park is one of the southern most neighborhoods in Brooklyn. Located a distance away from the train, the neighborhood is best accessible by car or bus. It is almost a small town unto itself, separated from the rest of the borough.

Mark Chiusano’s 2104 book, Marine Park Stories, is a collection of short stories based on the life of the author. The stories revolve around growing up, family and the colorful characters that the author encountered during his childhood.

I grew up not too far from Marine Park. The places and characters are familiar ones, to me at least. But that does not mean that a reader who is unfamiliar with Brooklyn or Marine Park would not be able to appreciate the stories. The best and most beloved stories are universal, regardless of the time they take place in or the specific location that the author places the story.

I recommend it.

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