I wish this were a joke, (thinking back on the previous post) but apparently it’s not.
The diner gives a 15% discount to customers who appear to say grace before eating. Yes, it’s a public prayer discount. Mary’s has been doing this for years, a co-owner confirmed to NPR. Finally someone posted a receipt with the line item for “15% Praying in Public ($6.07)” to Facebook.
I detest this kind of thing, and so should you, because it is ethically indefensible and un-American to the core. The policy, whether it is well-publicized or quietly implemented as this one was, exacerbates societal divisions and embraces bias and prejudice. There may be a legal difference between this and charging a premium (that is, a penalty) to those who have Obama stickers on their cars or who are wearing T-shirts with the logo of the local team’s nemesis, but ethically it is all the same: splitting the world into them and us, good guys and bad guys, the virtuous and the reviled. All of “Mary’s” customers are human beings, and that is the only thing that should matter in the United States of America.
Now that this offensive policy has been outed, the question is this: Is it unethical for a non-believer to pretend to pray in order to get the diner’s unethical discount for the godly? Of course it is.
It’s also unethical to patronize a restaurant that discriminates against its own patrons.