Never one to shy away from controversial topics, I thought we’d look at how Christian entrepreneurs should approach gay or lesbian employees in the workplace.
The homosexual agenda has been aggressively promoted through movies, television, the media, and political activism. Some would say that because the efforts are so militant they feel that the cause has been pushed upon them and they’re labeled a homophobe if they dares disagree with it.
It’s hard to tell exactly what percentage of the population is gay or lesbian, but chances are good that as your small business grows you will employ someone who is. The question then is how will you, as a Christian entrepreneur, handle this situation?
Homosexuality and the Bible
May I make a confession? There are passages in the Bible that I do not like and that I wish I could rip out. The problem is that once one starts down this path it destroys the basis for any other tenets of one’s faith. It’s an all or nothing proposition.
I believe that the Bible is clear that homosexual acts are a sin. I understand the sincere desire of those who want to find evidence in the pages of the Bible supporting their homosexuality; however, there simply isn’t any merit to the argument based on Scripture.
If you completely disagree with me on this issue the rest of this post is not for you. If, however, you agree then homosexuality poses a challenge in the workplace.
Are Christians Homophobes?
I’m not sure whether homosexuality is due to genetic predisposition, environmental factors, or a combination of both. It isn’t the attraction to the same sex that is a sin though, it’s acting upon that attraction in thought or deed that is the sin.
First, it hits much closer to home. It’s human nature to point the finger at someone else’s behavior to distract from your own, or one you can imagine.
Second, other sins like adultery do not stand up and demand to be recognized and legitimized. There’s not an adultery movement demanding rights.
It’s interesting that in both Old and New Testament times either sin would have brought down the wrath of the Law on the offenders. Unfortunately, adultery has become so ubiquitous in our society today that it seldom raises an eyebrow anymore.
Should Christian Entrepreneurs Hire Homosexuals?
You may not legally have a choice depending on the location of your business, the size of your business, or with whom you do business. While I firmly believe that what is morally right will always trump what is legally right, does that really apply to our hiring decisions?
I can empathize with those Christian entrepreneurs that will argue that hiring homosexuals will hurt their “Christian Owned Business” branding. Even with a “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy, sometimes there’s no need to ask. Often though, you’d never know.
If a person adheres to your dress code, does not actively promote their agenda, and does good work for you then I don’t see how their sexual orientation should come into the hiring decision – even if you believe it to be a sin.
The bigger problem is what does that mean once they become your employee?
Should Christian Entrepreneurs Offer Same Sex Benefits?
I think most Christian entrepreneurs are probably thinking that this is where they get off the train. It’s the crux of the homosexual agenda – to be recognized equally with heterosexual couples. It’s hard not to see the merit from their side.
Christian entrepreneurs should have the richest benefit plans that they can afford to give their employees, but what if having such a plan “legitimizes” this sin? Should you discriminate against homosexuals because of it?
How will such a decision impact your health insurance plans, life insurance policies, retirement plans, bereavement pay, adoption benefits, or a myriad of other fringe benefits?
Just like with employment, you may not legally have a choice whether to extend coverage. In these cases, the only way not to legally extend the benefits would be to offer none to all employees.
Should Christian Entrepreneurs Make Work Gay Friendly?
What type of culture will you create for homosexual employees? The implications can quickly become far reaching.
Will they be able to bring their “husband” or “wife” to the company picnics or Christmas party? Will you allow their “spouse’s” picture to be displayed on their desks?
What about baby or wedding showers at the workplace for gay couples? Will you allow public displays of affection in the workplace?
You see how quickly this starts affecting the entire company culture? Legal issues abound in the culture of the company.
Love Covers a Multitude of Sins
I’m really torn when it comes to this issue. In the end it seems to come down to three alternatives: offer no benefits, discriminate against homosexuals with your benefits, or offer the same benefits to everyone.
I can’t say in this matter what every Christian entrepreneur should do. For me, I would offer the same benefits to everyone hoping that my compassion and love would cover any sin committed by legitimizing homosexual relationships.
As far as company culture is concerned, I would allow significant others for company events and allow pictures on desks. I would not allow any baby or wedding showers on-site or public displays of affection regardless of sexual orientation.
Please Sound Off
I’m interested in what you have to say on this topic. What decisions would you make as a Christian entrepreneur? Does extending benefit coverage to same sex relationships really legitimize the relationship?