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Should landlords have the right to refuse unmarried couples as tenants?

Asked at Massachusetts Street on May 12, 2005

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Photo of Misty Robertson

“No. That’s clearly discrimination. I’ve always assumed that the Fair Housing Act covered that.”

Photo of Tony Blevins

“Absolutely not. That would go against the ideals that we are told this country was founded on.”

Photo of Drake Gearheart

“Yes, because a person’s moral and religious convictions guide everything they do in life, including business. You cannot separate the two.”

Photo of Emad Alkulaib

“Yes, they should. According to my religious beliefs as a Muslim, I could not enable an unmarried couple to live together. If it goes against the landlord’s beliefs, then they shouldn’t be forced to rent to them.”


parbuddy38 13 years, 1 month ago

I'm thinking about going to new orleans for a weekend. Any one have suggestions of fun things to do other than the french quarter

jonas 13 years, 1 month ago

Uno-Mas-Bob: You should know, I feel, that David Ryan does, or at the very least did, work for the LJWorld.

sunflower_sue 13 years, 1 month ago

QM, That last paragraph is the only thing that has made me want to write in all day. That says it all for me and is a perfect interpritation and ending for this mess!!!!!

megiddo 13 years, 1 month ago

Yes, Edmond Anthony Blevins played for KU. We lived in sin for five years and before that I lived in sin with a Muslim. And before that I lived in sin with a Jew. And before that I was to young to live in sin.

lunacydetector 13 years, 1 month ago

have the people suing ever threatened a lawsuit against other landlords in the past? i remember a similar threatened lawsuit about 15 years ago. it was settled out of court and it happened in lawrence. though i do not have all the facts in this case and it seems strange that white folk tenants get to rent and live in sin, i do recall a mixed race couple suing a landlord for the same basic reasons.

budd 13 years, 1 month ago

Does anyone else find it humorous that we have to debate which kinds of discrimination should be allowed and which should not be?

The bottom line I see is that people have the right to own property, and do with it what they want as long as they don't violate someone else's rights. People do NOT have the right to rent someone else's property- that requires consent. Since the property owner did not consent, why should it matter what her reasons were (even if she is a complete nut)?

KsjKC 13 years, 1 month ago

For the individual suggesting that a comparison to Nazism in cases such as these showed a person lacking in historical perspective...

Hmmm--Let me see here---just spitballing of course, but if someone experiences discrimination or segregation as a result of someone's political bent or dogma, to the point where they can't get a place to live not because of being a dead-beat or a destroyer of property...but just because of what they are....what's MISSING here in the analogy?

The current laws allow for this type of behavior; please don't let me be alone in the belief that it is wrong and dangerous to think something is sacrosanct only because it is presently a law...

Richard Heckler 13 years, 1 month ago

The witness on behalf of the landlord,Leo Barbee, was also a spokesperson numerous times supporting the anti gay amendment. I now suppose this landlord cannot rent to a gay or lesbian person. If it's legal in anyway I would say it must be written in the contract however this seems to have a mixed race overtone in the matter. I believe the landlord was having a evolutionary intelligent design experience otherwise known as mixed racism.

redbird 13 years, 1 month ago

In the business world wouldn't this be considered discimination?If it is left up to the property owner,where do the laws exist?? I agree that noone should be forced to do anything against their convictions,but this just isn't right.....What if these landlords also own businesses and now that they can get away with it on properties,they just go ahead and try at businesses?? My wife of 2 years and fiancee for 11 years,had to always talk renters into letting us have a place and it wasn't always easy.....

KsjKC 13 years, 1 month ago

Since when do the fair housing laws yield to the ideological whims of the property owner?

Drake and Emad--please be careful--the Nazis thought they had God on their side too...

It's discrimination plain and simply put--no need to couch it in terms of the direction of someone's moral compass.

misseve 13 years, 1 month ago

The couple IS gonna get married, they have a baby on the way... OMG i swear this town is gettin mor e closed minded everyday....and well Leo Barbee... I cant eevn go there about him on this. My tought is this if she truly did rent to a white unmarried coulple and not to Morales and Jackson she needs to ab ashamed of herself. Because that is discrimination in its rawest form Ugh i HATE ppl like that

Topside 13 years, 1 month ago

If a landlord can fill his units by not admitting unmarried tennants than he is doing a good job. I guess as a "buisness" owner in many respects he/she has the right to refuse service to anyone. But, I also am a little surprised just as Misty Robertson is, in that, it is addresses in the Fair housing Act. I doubt most landlords with a lot of units such as " The Aberdeen" would get very far if they didn't allow unwed tennants. I feel in many respects this issue takes care of itself on a supply/demand standpoint. I only see it a problem if an older grumpier landlord who had only 1 or 2 apts. or homes to rent doesn't like people "living in sin".

raven 13 years, 1 month ago

Ceallach: One more thought. Your volunteer work must be sad/rewarding/devistating all at the same time. My confusion on abortion is this, is there a difference between aborting a terminally ill baby (like in the case of my friend. Her baby's skull was not fully developed, most of its internal organs were not developed and those that were were on the outside of the body, etc. etc. etc.) As I said before with this disease the longest a baby has lived is 45 min. What about a healthy baby, is there a difference? Does every baby deserve any chance at life? No matter how short? No matter how painful? If the Mother's life is at risk, is it ok then? How do we decide which human life is more important? Do you see what I mean, these are not easy to answer.

Jay Bird 13 years, 1 month ago

If the landlord says no, then no. There are NO laws that state you HAVE to rent to anyone. That's why some do credit and background checks. Kinda like not wanting drug dealers and rapist living in there houses. I know not being married is no where near as bad, but we do live in the bible belt. As far as how this was founded(Tony), back in the day it would have NEVER happened. The woman would have been called a Whore and run out of town. God forbid she was going to have a child out of wedlock. Times may have changed, but for some, they still hang on to old school beliefs.

It's not discrimination. As an owner and or seller of anything, I have the RIGHT to REFUSE service or goods. Don't you have the right to say who can come into your house? If you own the house to be rented and only want college students, then that's all you rent to. WELCOME TO LAWRENCE!!! For being a city of understanding, you all seem upset when someone falls back on the beliefs they were raised on. Do I have to rent my house to Leroy the bad toucher child molester? If you say no, then your twofaced, if you say yes, then let him move in with you. You have the right to say what goes on under your roof, no matter how many you have.

What about Landlords who don't allow pet? Or smoking? Or keg parties, Meth labs, or allow you to work on your car in the driveway? Is that discrimination? If so, then I'm sure alot of people have the right to sue someone. The bottom line is He who owns it, makes the rules. If you don't like it, live somewhere else.

remember_username 13 years, 1 month ago

No, landlords should not discriminate to anyone based upon race, creed, marital status, politics, or whatever. The only exception would be if it could be shown that the parties have a history of non-payment or damage to property. Granted no one should be forced to go against their own beliefs except when those beliefs hazard the rights of others. The fact there are many apartments to choose from has no bearing on the matter as that defense leads to segregation of community.

Would those interested Christians out there please tell me when did "tough love" supplant "the golden rule"? Or was "the golden rule" ever a Christian ideal? I'm not trying to pick a fight I just don't get it.

remember_username 13 years, 1 month ago

o_m_b - maybe I'm to old to get it but, what does that shirt mean?

jonas 13 years, 1 month ago

Torn a couple ways on this. While I think that it is totally wrong for the owner/lesser to do something like this, I'm not sure that I see making a legal backlash against it as much of a good thing either. Call me a libertarian (and be mostly right!) if you want, but consider the ramifications of having a total anti-discrimination package against renters.

Hypothetically. . .

. . . suppose there is an owner who wants to make a small complex be a safe place for college-aged women, so he rents exclusively to them. Under the definition of descrimination, this would be a bad thing. Do you think it actually is?

. . . as happygolucky mentioned, are we to take running a credit check as economic discrimination as well? I own my own unit, and I plan, totally, on discriminating against very poor, very irresponsable people. I think I should have a right to not screw myself over by renting to someone I believe will pay the rent.

The problem here, as I see it, is actually this. Someone tosses out the word or concept of discrimination, and we've become so Pavlovianly (word?) reactionary to it that we automatically say that it's bad without considering it any deeper. But the fact of the matter is that we ALL discriminate, ALL THE TIME. In choosing friends, in choosing business partners, in choosing tenants, in choosing employees. It is a very slippery slope from discriminating against irresponsable people to discriminating against poor people to discriminating against blacks, women etc. but that shouldn't be a reason to jump all over everyone every time there is any use of discriminatory practice.

Funny thing is, they could just have passed over this couple without drawing attention to it and no one would have been the wiser. (I haven't actually read the article, so if I am in error in my facts, I'm cough sure someone will correct me) My advice is, if you don't like the practice, then don't rent from these people. Maybe they'll lose their business. If they don't, well, no one guaranteed you'd always get what you want, did they?

jonas 13 years, 1 month ago

Having read the article, now, it sounds more like racial discrimination with a semi-clever cover than any discrimination against unmarried people. If that's the case I think there is no question about the wrongness of it.

Mrs. Sanders also sounds totally, rediculously crazy. Or just very bad at lying. "I didn't talk to him or acknowledge him because I was having a religious experience"? Right there in the office? Wow! The Lord came down and told me not to rent to the black guy. He also told me to say it was because he was living in sin, despite the fact that I rent to white people doing the same thing.

remember_username 13 years, 1 month ago

jonas - the second one is easy. Any landlord has a right to protect his property as it pertains to a business. He should have the right not to rent to anyone who may not pay the rent or damage the property.

The first one is more tricky. The way it is presented makes it hard to argue against. I think if you wouldn't have a problem if your establishment was non-profit. Let me think about how to explain that and get back to you.

Hey, any lawyers out there want to chime in?

tir 13 years, 1 month ago

Personally, I don't think landlords should be allowed to discriminate against unmarried couples. But in my experience, landlords regularly discriminate over all sorts of petty things that have nothing to do with the prospective tenant's prior rental history and ability to pay.

I was looking for a place to live when I got separated, and one woman turned me down for an apartment because, as she loftily informed me, she only rented to graduate students. It didn't matter to her that I had a college degree and was employed full time at the university. I wasn't a grad student and therefore wasn't the sort of tenant she wanted.

Another lady who had a small house for rent grilled me about whether or not I had a boyfriend and whether or not he would be staying over at the house. When told that I didn't have a boyfriend, she wanted me to promise that if I got one, that he would not stay over at night, and preferably not visit me in the house at all. I decided at that point to look elsewhere, because I figured she would spy on me constantly and make my life a misery.

A friend of mine told me that one prospective landlord informed her that he didn't want her to cook any smelly foreign food in the apartment. (His definition of smelly foreign food was anything containing garlic). The landlord lived in the building himself and assured her that he would know if she did any smelly cooking. Needless to say, she rented from someone else.

I think if someone doesn't want to rent to you, you are better off not renting from them. Even if you invoke some law to force a landlord to accept you as a tenant, they can find many ways to make you wish you hadn't.

Hong_Kong_Phooey 13 years, 1 month ago

Drake your screen name 'Liberty'??

I think that it is against the law to deny a couple an apartment because you don't like their living arrangement. Therefore, the couple should get the money they are suing for.

Why does somebody always feel the need to compare every minor bit of discrimination to the Nazi's??

She was so DEEP IN PRAYER THAT SHE COULDN'T ANSWER THEM?! where's that bridge I was selling...

Ceallach 13 years, 1 month ago

I didn't have to go very far in the article to conclude that the woman (Sanders) may or may not be a racist, but she definitely is not an emotionally well woman. Unfortunately, her mental problems appear to be in the area of religion. She could not answer because she was having a religious experience? She drives around the complex picturing it as Jericho and the walls may fall down!

She is obviously a brick shy of a full load.

Landlords - why would landlords be exempt from non-discrimination when merchants are not? Be it landlords, managers, whatever -- they are selling a product -- space for living. The Lord does not need assistance from mere mortals to work His will. More people would be helped by Christians working with them, living around them, assisting them along their way, using their interactions to let people know how much God loves them. Instead we have too many people taking the Lord's name in vain by using it in ways such as mentioned in today's article.

The golden rule isn't just a Christian thing -- it is a Christ thing! Do unto others as you would have others do unto you. Easy enough. Unless you derive your sense of worth from your religion, much the same as some people derive their sense of worth from the color of skin they were wearing when they were born.

People renting apartments are not asking the landlord to bless any aspect of their lives, just allow them to rent the space you are advertising as available. Do your background and credit checks and then decide from that information, or get out of that business. But you are going to be very limited on what service or merchandise you can peddle. There are NOTHING but sinners in this world! Take care of yourself, focus on your own sinful nature, and let the Lord take care of the rest of His creation. I personally believe He has the power to do so without our help.

Redneckgal 13 years, 1 month ago

After reading the article why in the hell would you want to rent from them? They sound like a bunch of nuts to me. Maybe they need to start a commune there instead of renting them out.

christie 13 years, 1 month ago

Can a landlord refuse to rent because I'm black. Is that OK now? Can a landlord refuse to rent because I have a child. Is that OK now?


average 13 years, 1 month ago

Next hypothetical to the forum. Let's say you (gay cohabitating Unitarians) have been in a place for two years and the property is sold to a woman who hears the voices of Jesus. Should she be able to evict or non-renew your lease?

Fangorn 13 years, 1 month ago

Raven, (& Ceallach & enochville): I appreciate thoughtful discussion. If it would not be impolite, I would like to add a few small thoughts (and one long one) to the thread. Enochville gives good advice regarding extra-scriptural revelation and guidance. Anything that does not accord with Scripture should be rejected, and this can be difficult. We are God's children and I don't believe He expects anything from us beyond our level of spiritual growth. But He does expect us to grow. Just as I expect my daughter to be responsible, but at the level of a seven year old, not an adult or even a teenager. I'm very glad you and Ceallach were able to clarify what you were saying to each other. It pained me to see this conflict develop when I didn't think any real conflict existed. Finally, going back to one of the earlier posts of this particular thread, I'd like to offer something that may help resolve one of your inner conflicts. A common translation of Exodus 20:13 is "Thou shalt not kill." It is often difficult to get exact meaning when translating, and I think this is a case where a better translation is possible. [a note: Hebrew is read right-to-left and has some letters that have no Latin alphabet equivalent, but I'll do the best I can] The Hebrew word most often translated as "kill" is harag. The word used in Exodus 20 is ratsach, which is better translated as "murder". In the New Testament, Jesus uses the Greek word apokteino "to kill" in Matt. 10:28, Mark 3:4, Luke 15:23, et al. But when He, speaking Greek, quotes Exodus, He uses the word phoneuo "to murder". God does make a distinction between killing and murdering. It is not always easy for us to know the difference, and I can't offer a simple solution. But hopefully it helps you to know that there is a difference between the two.

Fangorn 13 years, 1 month ago

First, Abercrombie & Fitch used to be a sporting goods store?! How long ago was that? The mind boggles at the process that brought about this transformation. Is nothing safe? Consider the possibilities with Calbela's or Bass Pro Shop. The horror!

Second, as jonas alludes and as I've stated before, "discriminate" means simply to make a distinction between two or more subjects, be they people, places to shop, food dishes, decorating styles, whatever. "Discrimination" in and of itself is not always wrong. In fact, it's quite necessary to the functioning of society. Tens of millions of Americans "discriminated" one way or another last November. But the word has come to connote the more negative distinctions some people make, and so we do have strong emotional reactions when it is used. Those emotions often cloud our ability to determine whether the reason for making the distinction is valid, ethical, legal, or even understandable. And sometimes those emotions even keep us from asking the question in the first place. (btw, "Pavlovian" is an adjective used to modify nouns, so why not "Pavlovianly" to modify an adjective?)

Finally, I think that no one should be forced to conduct business that they have sound reason to believe would facilitate what they view as immoral activity. If this decision was truly based on a moral/ethical belief that cohabitation by unmarried couples is wrong, then I support their decision. If it was a racially-based decision covered by a veneer of religiosity, that's a different matter. . . .

enochville 13 years, 1 month ago


I wholeheartly agree with your most recent comment. I am grateful for the volunteer work you do and for those who adopt so that life can continue.


Thank you for our discussion. I have truly enjoyed it. I do believe God is very merciful and as long as we keep seeking after him, even if we don't figure it all out (in fact, we won't during this life) he will provide a way for us to learn what we need to know to return to live with him. He knows our hearts; he knows we are trying. We just have to fight the urge to stop where we are, to quit trying, to be content with our relationship with God. Please, if you want to continue our discussion email me at the email address seven messages up. I don't use that account very often, so you may need to tell me when you send a message to it. Have a wonderful day. I will pray that God may help you find your answers.

Ceallach 13 years, 1 month ago

extreme: it is irritating to me that every religious nut (in whatever religion) receives extensive coverage, nauseating quotes, etc., while the views of the average believer are seldom printed. Very few Christians share Sanders views, yet she will be held up as a poster child for Christianity run wild.

enochville 13 years, 1 month ago

My answer to that could be very long if it were to be complete, but I'll try to hit the main points. First, I have used the sources mentioned above to discover whether these new sources of knowledge, namely living prophets and additional scripture, are of God or not. I have found that their words are consistent with the Bible, give me insights, and I know that when I asked God in prayer whether they are from Him, I was answered that they are. So, when God speaks through them and tells me that there are distinctions in taking someone's life, I believe them.

Futhermore, there is a precedent, in other words we have seen God act like this before. In Matthew 19:3-9, we read that God would prefer that there be no divorces, but because we are not able to live this higher law, yet, He was merciful and allows us to get divorces if the circumstances really call for it. Similarly, I think ideally, he would have us never kill another human being; however, because we are weak and he is merciful, he takes into account extenuating circumstances and permits it under certain circumstances which he has stipulated. He makes the conditions clear so that we cannot misunderstand.

He is a loving, living Father and realizes that life is not clear cut or ideal. He gives us commandments to point the way of happiness. He grants exceptions out of his understanding. He does not allow us to make our own exceptions. We are not authorized to change the law even though it may be difficult to follow, but he can because he is the giver of the law. When scripture says he is the same yesterday, today, and forever, it means that he is the same, but he can deal differently with us throughout the ages. God's children before Moses' day were not given the Mosaic law and Christ when he came gave us the higher law. He adapts things for us, hopefully requiring more and more from us as we are ready. Although he gave us the command to be perfect (Matt. 5:48), he doesn't expect us to get there overnight.

Not sinning means doing God's will; his commands to us may change. Even though Abraham knew he should not kill, he was prepared to kill his son Isaac because God asked him to (Genesis 22). It would have been a sin to Abraham to hold back and not kill Isaac. Thankfully, God sent an angel to tell Abraham that the Lord no longer required that of him. God gives blanket commandments because they cover almost all cases and he does not want his children trying to justify going against his will. But, we have to be in tune enough and flexible enough to do his will even if it contadicts an earlier command. Our God is a living God and his commands are living not dead meaning we need to follow him now.

raven 13 years, 1 month ago

Ceallach: A quick response to your earlier post. I understand what you are saying, however I do not think that anyone is lumping all/most/any other Christians into "my category". I suppose it is the fact that this forum is so anonymous that makes me feel comfortable expressing a personal internal conflict I have. However, that does not mean that this is the same thing going on with anyone else. Some questions I simply cannot find a black and white on are is killing always murder? Is killing even in war murder? These are things I personally wrestle with, there are many more but do not want to take up too much space. When I finally find my answers I will be consistent. Until I can make peace with what is in my own heart I will continue to search for my own answers. I am sorry that a personal conflict/internal struggle on my part you find harmful. But to who? You? Society? My faith? Myself?

wichita_reader 13 years, 1 month ago

Wasn't Tony Blevins a defensive back for the KU football team a few years back?

Ceallach 13 years, 1 month ago

btw, how many times would someone have to say they hear the voice of God before you would know that you do not want that person to have a master key to your apartment?

bleeding_flower 13 years, 1 month ago

That women is a nutcase. She may have the right to choose not to rent to them, but I think that she needs to be locked up. They should put her next to Leroy Hendricks.

remember_username 13 years, 1 month ago

Fangorn - I'm a pretty smart person but I'm not real clear about what you were saying? Do you think a store clerk should not be fired for refusing to sell condoms?

Ceallach - I feel it may have been myself more than extreme who equated Sanders with other Christians with my comment about "tough love" supplanting "the golden rule". I still don't have a reasonable explanation for this perception. I may be wrong but from my perspective the Christians in the U.S. are getting "less forgiving". I apologize for the generalization but the perception is very real.

Jeanne Cunningham 13 years, 1 month ago

Ms. Sanders sais that she was only following the "laws of God"... Fortunately so far, in Kansas, we do NOT have a dictatorship or theocracy, but rather some semblance of democracy/republic and actual people get to vote on the laws. What's her take on females who have "overnight male visitors", males who have "overnight female visitors", two females who have a "long term relationship" or two males who have a "long term relationship" - (wink-wink to all of those)? If she is TRULY serious about "managing" the morals of all of her tenants, she's going to need cameras installed in the bedrooms - and - horror of horrors, maybe in ALL the rooms in those apartments - AND the parking lot, too!!!

craigers 13 years, 1 month ago

I feel that Sanders has the right to refuse to rent to the unmarried couple if she feels that is right morally. If the decision was based off of race then I disagree.
Ceallach, I know what you are saying about Jesus Christ and His love, but no offense, He wouldn't rent to unmarried couples, or to gays or anybody else that does things in direct conflict with what He says is right. And I know we all do things daily to fall short of His righteousness, but He looks at your heart. Having said that, your life is a direct image of your heart. If you continue to live in sin without any regard to God's will, then your heart is not in the right condition. God's love absorbs and wipes away our sins but He doesn't just look past them and condone them by making it easier for you to commit them. That would be like God selling drunks beer, giving little rooms to single people to fornicate, or giving married people a secret place to commit adultery. God loves us but doesn't accept us unless we ask and cover ourselves with the blood of Christ and ask for forgiveness. I really disagree with people trying to say that since Christ loves us all so much, that he will not even make us give an account for what we have done and judge us. Those who don't reach for Christ, repent, and turn from their sin will get nowhere. Not my words, but Christ. When He healed or delivered people, He told them to be well and sin no more, not be healed, but hey if you want to not get married and live in my house with your significant other then go ahead. This world of unaccountability is really nauseating to me.

enochville 13 years, 1 month ago

Raven - I know that your last comment was to Ceallach, but hopefully it will not be offensive to throw in my two cents.

I think that it is admirable that you take time to investigate your thoughts and feelings about these things. Whenever we wrestle with something, we often have to look at what we use to determine what is correct. In other words, are we using logic, our emotions, scientific evidence, anecdotal evidence (our experiences and their outcomes), the authority of the Bible, the trusted advice from a friend, commentary on scripture, or prayer. What are you using in trying to find your answer? And which source(s) do you value the most?

Ceallach 13 years, 1 month ago

Raven: You are right, there is truly no easy answer. The mental and spiritual pain women suffer involving abortion is overwhelming, on either side of the decision. While others may have, I have never met with a woman who did not approach the decision with a heavy heart. Whether she was dealing with the news of an unwanted or unexpected pregnancy or fighting her way out of the post-abortion depression that many women suffer for long periods following her decision to abort. So many young women do not know that removing a baby from her life seldom ever removes it from her heart. Some of the symptoms do not surface for years.

Today, it is extremely rare for a pregnancy to threaten the mother's life. In problem pregnancies, doctors have a scale to determine if the medical health of the mother can be maintained long enough into the pregnancy to deliver a viable, premature child. They have a high success rate and the mother's health is the determining factor. However, it is not always possible to do so without endangering the mother. At those times, once again, it is ultimately the mother's choice as to how long they wait. Different people make different decisions, all equally difficult. I personally have great empathy for the woman regardless of her decision. In effect, it is self defense at its most painful. My heart goes out to every woman who has to make that decision.

Ceallach 13 years, 1 month ago

remember: I did not take offense to anything either you or extreme said. My remarks were directed to the LJW article. Sorry if my reply sounded curt, wasn't intended. When I take a short break to read posts I oftimes do not have the luxury of proofing.

How sad if the very people who depend on God's forgiveness will not give it. I am thankful that He was patient with me (much longer than some believers(?) might have thought I deserved :) I don't answer for others who profess Christianity, only myself. There is a big difference between tough love from a loving and righteous God and the mean-spirited acts of self-righteous, self-glorifying humans done on His behalf. We are to love others on His behalf -- that alone, done right, would keep us occupied for the rest of our lives.

raven 13 years, 1 month ago

enochville: It is truley a combination of all the above you mentioned. However, I feel that they mostly contradict one another. Ceallach and I got off subject a little to abortion so for this example I will use that. My faith tells me it is wrong, but haven't we all seen those instances where it doesn't seem wrong? Example: A dear friend of mine, married with two children was expecting her third. However, they found out the baby had Meckle Gerber (sp?) syndrome. The baby was not fully developed and that is putting it midly. The doctors said at most the baby will/would live 45 min. But they did not know how much pain the baby would be in during that time. As well, my friend if she carried the baby to full term would put her own life at risk. So, I can't help but wonder, would aborting the baby in this situation still be wrong? Is it not equally as wrong to chance her other two children grow up without a mother? To widow her young husband?

Carmenilla 13 years, 1 month ago

Sanders is a "not sound of mind" whether she is rascist or not (she sure sounds like she could be). And not renting to unmarried couples is a pretty bad business move considering this is a college town and "living together" is practically the norm for 20-somethings. To me, she sounds like the worst type of landlord. That woman would be all up in yer business 24/7. I can't stand landlords like that. In my earlier single days here I had a pretty scary run of kooky landlords. I guess when they get a little power it drives them mad!

And yes, wichita_reader, Tony Blevins did play for KU.

happyone 13 years, 1 month ago

In this case (after reading the article) I think it was definately race discrimination... If it was truely because of her moral belief then why are there other unmarried, but white, couples renting there? Also, as any one in lawrence knows rent is outrageous and perhaps the reason they wanted to rent there was because it was within there budget... I have rented several places where I didn't like the landlord/neighbor'HOOD' because it was what I could afford.

enochville 13 years, 1 month ago

raven - I am so pleased that you use all that God has given us to search for your answers. As I have stated earlier in the week, during the discussion on evolution, I believe that contradictions are only apparent contradictions, that when all is finally made known we will see that each source gave us pieces which we often misunderstand. I have decided that before I place faith in something, I must be sure that it is what God requires us to believe and not what religious people think God requires us to believe.

Abortion is a great example. No where in scripture does God say abortion is murder and thou shalt not have an abortion. He did say thou shalt not kill, but he does allow us to kill in self-defense or when we are at war. There are lots of examples of that in the old testament. So, clearly God understands his command to not kill to not mean that we can never kill, there are exceptions. So, is abortion an exception? Since the Bible is silent on that we have to use a different source, though if we are unsure it is best to err on the side of not killing a fetus. This post is becoming long, so I will just say that I believe God has called prophets in our day who have the same authority to speak for God that Moses did. And they have said that we should not have abortions as a general rule. However, in cases of rape, incest, or endangerment of the mother's life abortion is permitted, but we need to pray about our decision and follow his guidance.

Fangorn 13 years, 1 month ago

questionme: This is going to sound really sarcastic, but I don't mean it to be. Have you ever actually read the Bible? I ask because of your characterization of the circumstances that found Mary and Joseph in a stable. You state they "were refused from the Inn because they were against the 'status quo'". Luke very clearly states that they "laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn." [emphasis mine, chapter 2 verse 7 if you care to look it up yourself] Bethlehem was crowded with people because of the census taking place. This particular inn (and presumably all the others they may have checked) had no vacancy. So, in modern terms, they had to sleep in the parking garage. You misstate a clear passage of Scripture, a statement of events that doesn't require "interpretation", and then base your point on that misstatement. That is a fatal flaw in this part of your argument. From a purely human standpoint, I'd like to add that if the opportunities this couple's child has can be dictated by one property owner in Lawrence, Kansas, they aren't going to have much in the way of opportunity anyway. That would be sad if he/she truly were limited. But I doubt very much that this will be the case.

tell_it_like_it_is 13 years, 1 month ago

I've always wondered just how it is that some people think they know just what God is thinking. There are lots of reasons why people live together without getting married. Some of them make a lot of sense like loss of social secrurity benefits and so on. I myself have always credited God with having a lot of understanding and common sense and think maybe he would understand those things. I also sometimes wonder if he wouldn't have a bigger problem with people like this landlady who claim to hear from God and then use it to their advantage.

Fangorn 13 years, 1 month ago

r_u: In your example, I think the clerk should be fired. Or better yet should have found a different place to work. The owner has the right to determine how his/her business is used. This hypothetical clerk would be the equivalent of the maintenance man determining the landlord's rental policies. // btw, something very close to your example is becoming an issue where some pharmacists are declining on moral grounds to dispense the "morning after" abortion pill. I think the solution there is to allow the pharmacy owner to determine whether they will carry the drug, and individual pharmacists may decide whether they would work for a particular pharmacy based on that policy. Illinois is considering a law to mandate what is currently an individual moral choice.

raven 13 years, 1 month ago

This is the problem for me, why is ok to kill sometimes and not others? Shouldn't it be wrong if it is wrong? A baby of rape is still a baby, a soldier at war still has family and friends and loved one who will miss him/her. So I ask you, simply as advice, what makes you comfortable with the distinctions?

raven 13 years, 1 month ago

Ceallach: Thank you for your response. Indeed I think that sometimes in the short amount of space we have on this forum things don't always end up sounding as we meant for them to. No harm done. I always enjoy speaking with people here, even if there is a disagreement/different viewpoints. That is what makes it so interesting to me. I too try to avoid stereotyping and dispite my own sometimes confused views :) I am deeply offended by people stereotyping, blaming and bashing Christians. I hope your headache gets better. I have only suffered from a migraine once, but that was enough!!

Enochville: Thank you for your posts. I have been busy the last couple of hours but was just finally able to read them. Again you have given me much to think about, and to really pay attention to. Sometimes I think myself and probably most get so busy in our own lives, interests, business, etc that maybe that small voice was pushed out with how noisy life is in general. I will listen for it, closely and see what happens with the results. I will continue to let you know how I am dealing and what conclusions I draw from my experiences/research/readings/etc.

happyone 13 years, 1 month ago

My husband and I lived together for 2 years before we got married (we wanted to make sure little things we did wouldn't drive the other one nuts) now we have been married 15 years!! My brother didn't live with his wife prior to getting married and they divorced within 3 tell me is it really so wrong? Being married is an emotional bond not a piece of paper!!

questionme 13 years, 1 month ago

Here's to the landlords: You have a product to sell, yes I agree. But in your product that you sell, as in any industry, there are regulations that must be met and followed. In the Fair Housing Act you have to rent to qualified applicants, regardless of race, sex, or marital status. That is the FHA law and that is that. I agree with it.

Now here is where you have the choice. The FHA says that you have to rent to every qualified applicant per available units. You can raise your qualification standards to however high you want. But your standard can't be too high or you will have empty apartments, or set it too low and you have crack houses or college slums.

I would have to say that regardless of marital status, you have two wonderful things going on here. You have two people who are wanting to stay together for the sake of an unborn child. That is more than a lot of people do already. At least the father didn't run upon hearing the responsibily that has just been given to him. Secondly, they are wanting start their life together in an attempt for a happy life for themselves and their unborn child.

Now, with property prices as high as they are, where do they go now? In the society we have now, court of course.

Didn't the same happen to Joseph and Mary?? They were refused from the Inn because they were against the 'status quo' and look at what happened. Not to say we have another rising of the Lord, but the potential every person has when coming into this world lessens even more when capitolistic bigots are deciding that their INTERPRETATION of a book dictates the opportunites that are given to them. THAT is wrong.

raven 13 years, 1 month ago

That seems to be a pretty complete answer. You have given me a lot to think about. I appreciate you taking the time to speak with me and share your own personal insights. Not stereotype me for questioning my religion and own views like Ceallach. I truley hope someday to be able to be so strong and sure in my own views/thoughts/perceptions/faith to be able to answer in this manner. I shall keep you updated if you are interested to hear.

Confrontation 13 years, 1 month ago

Christie: You are an idiot! You assume that because someone is Muslim and would refuse to rent to an unmarried couple, then that person must be a member of the Taliban! Does that mean everone on this sight who agrees with the property manager has Taliban beliefs? People like you are ridiculous. You accuse Emad Alkulaib of having discriminatory views, but apparently you don't see your own views as being the same? Wake up and go get educated. Most Muslims don't agree with the Taliban, and their treatment of women is cultural to their area, not an aspect of their religion.

On another note, one of my friends rented from the lady in the article. My friend had her black boyfriend stay over almost every night, and, SURPRISE!, the walls did not crumble to the ground. I also almost signed a lease with two of my friends (both white, one male and one female) at the same place. She didn't even check our credit and had no problems with three non-married white people living together. If one manager is allowed to do this, then other managers will see it as being okay. Pretty soon, most of you will have your wish of segragating minorities to a small section of Lawrence.

Ceallach 13 years, 1 month ago

Fangorn: Your particiption is always welcome. Thank you for this and previous posts. You have been gifted with not only a voice of reason but the ability to express truths in a way others can readily accept. I always look forward to your input on the topic of the day. I also look forward to ms_canada returning home and rejoining our board. What a wonderfully gracious lady.

BTW, if any of you are interested the Crisis Pregnancy Outreach website is - the site provides a link to , this site has a visually stunning photographic walk through the three trimesters of pregnancy with descriptive text for each stage. Aside from being a tremendously helpful visual for mothers to be, as a Christian, I find it totally fascinating and share it with my children and grandchildren. We are wonderfully made, how true.

enochville 13 years, 1 month ago

I would like to be updated. I just thought of two more exceptions. Jesus and his disciples were often accused of breking the Sabbath, Christ answered that the sabbath was made for man and not man for the sabbath (Mark 2:23-27). He said if your ox is stuck in a ditch, it is appropriate to pull him out on the Sabbath. Similarly, I do not think he would condemn emergency room doctors or fireman for working on the sabbath. Futhermore, Abraham bore false witness in Egypt to save his life (Genesis 12:11-13), and in this God justified him.

I think the quickest and most accurate and complete way to get your answers would be to do as I have done and find out if these additional sources of revelation will lead you to true answers by asking God if they are from him. Then, once you get your answer, read all you can from their words and see how everything begins to make perfect sense. I would warn you though, you will probably find that there are ways in which you are not in harmony with God's will and you'll have to make some changes. That can be scary and may make you not want to find out for sure what God wants you to do. I know though, as you live according to the light you've been given, a peace and happiness that you've never known will become your companion. You really have no idea such fulfillment exists until you qualify yourself for it. Good luck. Feel free to contact me with any questions.

raven 13 years, 1 month ago

This is probably different for everyone too, but I do pray for answers. I pray for Him to help guide me in my decisions and in my actions. How do you know when you get an answer? How can I be sure that what I think is an answer is not me just wanting something to be an answer? I am torn up inside if you cannot tell. Searching for Truth (big T truth), you can never really know that you've found it. Until the end I suppose and then we will all know. You are very patient and kind I enjoy speaking with you.

enochville 13 years, 1 month ago

I am so glad that you asked that question of how can you tell whether the feelings or thoughts that come to you during prayer are of God, come from some unconscious part of yourself, or from the devil (if you believe he exists). I have an answer for you, but I am not sure if we can use this forum to discuss it. I am trying to think of another way we can communicate. Would you feel comfortable emailing me at

Ceallach 13 years, 1 month ago

craigers: He does see people's hearts, I cannot. Nor can I assume what He would have done in many scenarios. One of the points I was trying to make is when you take a job providing services or goods to the general public you should not expect each person to meet your (or your god's) minimum requirements. The people were not seeking a leadership position in your church, they were looking for a place to live.

For Christians to think they are somehow obligated to hammer home the gospel message by passing judgment on others in a business environment is more than a little pompous and self-glorifying. "I cannot be soiled by breathing the air of sinners such as yourself, my god required me to deny you this living space." For all we know the married, straight, church-going couples in the next building are forehead deep in all manner of sins. Where does it stop? I think if you cannot rent a space according to Caesar's law, in Caesar's land, perhaps you should change your means of making a living. If God does not want you dirtying yourself with his lesser creation, I am sure you will be provided with other sources of income.

craigers 13 years, 1 month ago

Forgiving people and condoning what they do are two completely different things. Making things easier for people to continue living a life of sin shouldn't be done so that we can impress ourselves with our forgiving spirit.

GreenEyedBlues 13 years, 1 month ago

Christianity has befallen to the ranks of sheer lunacy. If this lady WAS a real Christian and she actually PAID ATTENTION to the teachings of Christ, she'd know that she should, out of Christian grace, accept an unmarried couple in her home.

Remember that WWJD bumper sticker/bracelet/tee shirt campaign? What would Jesus do in that situation? From what I understand about Jesus, He doesn't look down on others, but instead welcomes lepers, murderers, hookers, adulterers and tax collectors with open arms. He wouldn't raise a Hellish fuss because someone isn't righteous.

That's a human flaw. And that's where so-called "Christians" have missed the boat. The Bible says "thou shall not take out a lease with someone of the opposite gender unless you're married". So, Miss Sanders, being the good Christian woman she is, didn't "shack up" in her day because she knows it's wrong. That doesn't mean she should turn her nose up at someone because they're not as righteous as she is.

It's not for anyone on Earth to judge who is living in sin!

enochville 13 years, 1 month ago

I do feel like I could say this much here. The scriptures tell of different types of revelation, such as visions, dreams, and visitations by angels. However, most revelations come through the whisperings of the Holy Ghost. Quiet spiritual promptings may not seem as spectatular as visions or angelic visitations, but they are more powerful and lasting and life changing. The witness of the Holy Ghost makes an impression on the soul that is more significant than anything you can see or hear. The following counsel comes from a book, "True to the Faith", and will help us prepare to receive promptings from the Holy Ghost: Pray for guidance. The Lord said, "Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you" (Matthew 7:7-8). If you approach your Father in humble prayer, you can eventually "receive revelation upon revelation, knowledge upon knowledge, that thou mayest know the mysteries and peaceable things-that which bringeth joy, that which bringeth life eternal" (D&C 42:61). Be reverent. Reverance is profound respect and love. Be humble. When you are humble, you recognize your dependence on the Lord. The prophet Mormon taught, "Because of meekness and lowliness of heart cometh the visitation of the Holy Ghost, which Comforter filleth with hope and perfect love" (Moroni 8:26). Keep the commandments. The Lord promised, "Unto him that keepeth my commandments I will give the mysteries of my kingdom" (D&C 63:23). Study the scriptures daily. As you diligently study the scriptures, you learn from the examples of men and women whose lives have been blessed as they followed the Lord's revealed will. You will also become more receptive to the Holy Ghost in your own life. Take time to ponder. When you take time to ponder the truths of the gospel, you open your mind and heart to the guiding influence of the Holy Ghost. When seeking specific guidence, study the matter out in your mind. At times the Lord's communication will come only after you have studied a matter out in your own mind. Patiently seek God's will. God reveals Himself "in his own time, and in his own way, and according to his own will" (D&C 88:63-68). Revelation will probably come to you "line upon line, precept upon precept, here a little and there a little" (2 Nephi 28:30). Do not try to force spiritual things. Revelation does not come that way. Be patient and trust in the Lord's timing.

Continued "Recognizing the promptings of the Holy Ghost".

Carmenilla 13 years, 1 month ago

Offtotheright, is it possible for you to think that they were discriminated against because of race? I generally think lawsuits are unnecessary but this Sanders person was renting to white unmarried people and not to a mixed race couple. Come on, that looks pretty bad. Or do you think this couple is "riff-raff" too?

craigers 13 years, 1 month ago

If the landlord doesn't feel right about renting to unmarried people, then to her/him that is a personal ethical decision. If their ethics/morals guide their life, then letting somebody rent from them would rest on the landlords conscience and I for one know I don't like doing things that go against my morals because it eats away at me. Maybe she doesn't want to feel like she is condoning their actions because it would weigh her own conscience down.

enochville 13 years, 1 month ago

craigers - I couldn't agree with you more.

The bottom line is the landlord has to follow the law, whatever it says. I have yet to see a post that tells us what the law says on this matter. If it truly was race discrimination, then the law is clear on that. Some have called her preference against fornicators discrimination. In that, you are mistaken. Discrimination applies to differential treatment to people based on demographics that people have no choice over such as race, disability, sex. Now in our country, we have extended the law to also include religion. Although we continue to have laws on the books that discriminate against the practice of religion such as anti-polygamy laws between consenting adults (I am not talking about the child polygamists) which is still a tenet of some religious groups.

However, we can legally treat people differently do to their behavior. For most of those behaviors we have laws, some we do not. Although we must obey the law, we need to remember that there is nothing special about some behavior being codified and another not. We can also write new laws.

enochville 13 years, 1 month ago

Amid the many noises and messengers in the world today, we must learn to recognize the whisperings of the Holy Ghost. Following are some of the principal ways the Holy Ghost communicates with us: He speaks to the mind and heart in a still, small voice. The Lord taught: "I will tell you in your mind and in your heart, by the Holy Ghost, which shall come upon you and which shall dwell in your heart. Now, behold, this is the spirit of revelation" (D&C 8:2-3). Sometimes the Holy Ghost will help you understand a gospel truth or give you a prompting that "seems to occupy your mind, and press itself upon your feelings" (D&C 128:1). Although such a revelation can have a powerful effect on you, it almost always comes quietly, as a "still small voice" (see 1 Kings 19:9-12). He prompts us through our feelings. Although we often describe the communication from the Spirit as a voice, that voice is one that we feel more than we hear. We get a feeling of comfort and serenity. As you continue to seek and follow the Lord's will in your life, you will come to recognize how the Holy Ghost influences you personally. *He brings peace. The Holy Ghost is often called the Comforter (John 14:26). As He reveals the will of the Lord to you, He will speak "peace to your mind" (D&C 6:23). The peace He gives cannot be counterfeited by worldly influences or false teachings. The Savior said, "Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid" (John 14:27).

A couple of other things. Christ taught that you can tell the difference between a true prophet and a false one, and I would add between a true revelation and a false one, "by their fruits" (Matt. 7:15-20). In other words, what comes of it? Is it consistent with the Bible? Does it persuade men and women to believe in and worship Christ? Does it bring about good and understanding?

Christ also taught, "If any man will do [God's] will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself" (John 7:17). It is the law of cause and effect. Live it and see what comes of it. Are you happier my abiding by its principles?

Carmenilla 13 years, 1 month ago

Although what you said about winning the case is a nice thought. With that they could almost afford the down payment on a house here. But don't you think it was more than her "morals" at work here?

Ceallach 13 years, 1 month ago

Raven: thank you for noting your entry to me on this thread. I was unable to read last night's posts due to a migraine that has also kept me from work today. I really failed in my attempt to speak out against stereotyping if I, in fact, made you feel like I was stereotyping you. That was never my intent. Apparently I still take the anti-Christian posts on this site way too personally. It seems every subject seems to work its way back to posts blaming society's woes on Christians and/or Christianity in general.

I apologize if I seem overly zealous on the subject of abortion. I volunteer for a crisis pregnancy outreach organization. We lose hundreds of thousands of healthy, viable babies each year. Unfortunately, the doctors who told your friend that they were not sure how much pain it might feel, did not add that they were not sure how much pain the baby experiences during an abortion. We seldom hear about the medical evidence indicating the child feels pain during the process. The vast majority lose their lives for the convenience, not the health, of the mother. There are long lists of couples waiting to adopt babies from unwanted pregnancies. Many of the people on those lists want to adopt children with disabilities, in hope of saving some of those lives and allowing them to receive loving care whatever their life expectancy.

Again, I regret that my posts did not adequately reflect my feelings. Although this is an anonymous forum, your posts indicate that you are a thoughtful young woman. Many of us have times when we are torn between our world and our Lord. I can truly relate to that (although, I can no longer claim to be young :) I am now determined to take more time with my posts and hopefully avoid sounding harsh or critical. The last thing I want to do is hurt you or anyone else.

craigers 13 years, 1 month ago

GreenEyedBlues, I agree that God would welcome all of those people into His arms, but do you honestly think that he would allow fornicators to stay in the same room or house? Do you honestly think He would put gay men in the same place as a bunch of other gay men? Read Galatians, God's grace is not a license to sin at will. Too many people take God's grace as that license and abuse it. Grace is a gift, not a tool for all of us to just live how we want to and then expect to live with God forever in the end. Wake up people.

GreenEyedBlues 13 years, 1 month ago

Eunuchville said "fornicators". That is awesome.

happyone 13 years, 1 month ago

"Samuel testified it was legal to not rent to unmarried couples, as long as it's done consistently.
But Bruce Plenk, a private attorney hired by the city, pointed out that Sander allowed other unmarried white couples to stay in the apartments"

It is clear that this has nothing to do with religious beliefs she was being racist and tried to cover it up by using the "Christian Card"

GreenEyedBlues 13 years, 1 month ago

Littlered, isn't that Christian Card great? Covers up any sense of bigotry, racism, PRIDE in an instant by just mentioning God's name. I hope He's pissed off.

raven 13 years, 1 month ago

Fangorn: I am getting in a little late, but I wonder what is the difference between not renting to an unmarried couple and not renting to someone based on thier race?

enochville 13 years, 1 month ago

tell it like it is said, "I've always wondered just how it is that some people think they know just what God is thinking."

I agree that many people speak for God without knowing his will. But, on many matters we can know what he is thinking because he told us in inspired word. I marvel how some people claim not to know what God is thinking when it comes to commandments.

God cannot look upon sin with the least degree of allowance. All of us can and should judge behaviors whether they are good or bad, but only God can judge a person because only he knows their heart and history.

God was forgiving, but did not condone sin.

GreenEyedBlues 13 years, 1 month ago

"All of us can and should judge behaviors whether they are good or bad" I will keep THAT in mind.

happyone 13 years, 1 month ago

I don't like pushing my beliefs off on anyone because I don't want people to push theirs off on me but in this case it is relevant Ms. Sanders needs to be reminded that in the BIBLE it states......JUDGE NOT LEST YOU BE JUDGED.... now I try not to judge people but if she is going to say she couldn't rent to them because of a vision from GOD then doesn't she belong in the SISTERHOOD

Terry Bush 13 years, 1 month ago

(a) it is against the law to discriminatory refuse to rent to someone because of their race and (b) it is not (currently) against the law to refuse to rent to someone because you disapprove of their morals.

Since the landlord is claiming the refusal is/was based upon (b), the burden of proof then shifted to the claimant to prove that is/was a lie. That could easily be done if she'd rented to other non-married couples of the white persuasion. Which she apparently has/had. If so, I hope that evidence was presented at the trial..... If not, the couple's lawyer SCREWED UP big time.

MANY racists use all kinds of excuses (to themselves and others) to hide their true motives. While I for one wouldn't want to live where I am not wanted, I do think it is a good idea to hold hypocrites up to the light. If this whole mess is merely a morals issue, then it's ugly by legal. IF, on the other hand, the denial was made b/c of race, federal and state law was violated, and racism is at play. If you don't approve of anti-racism laws....well.... Say so.

David Ryan 13 years, 1 month ago

"And isn't it interesting how the LJWorld sneaks editorial comment into the news? As in the "not white enough for Abercrombie" T-shirt prominently displayed in a photo on today's home page. Very subtle guys."

Okay, I'll bite: precisely what is the "editorial comment" you think you see? Let's hear it specifically.

Carmenilla 13 years, 1 month ago

I think there is money to be made for this couple. Until you've been discriminated against because of your race and than told "its something else (like God's law)" its hard to understand why they feel the need to pursue legal action. It sure stinks like she didn't want a fornicatin' mixed race couple (with a baby on the way) living there. She also sounds like someone who might be hearing "God's voice" when what she really needs is some Lithium because those "voices" ain't God!!!

happyone 13 years, 1 month ago

LMFAO I agree she needs lithium alright!!!

Terry Bush 13 years, 1 month ago

Here here Carm. Anyone who thinks that racism is gone, and we're all just open minded and kind to people of all races, because that kind of thing doesn't exist in Lawrence KS, needs to get a clue. I suggest such folks try a "black like me" experience. I don't hear voices, but I am pretty sure that God (by any name) approves of treating people badly based upon their race!!!!!!

Terry Bush 13 years, 1 month ago

Does NOT approve.... I miss words when I am aggravated, and this kind of behavior MORE than aggravates me!

Carmenilla 13 years, 1 month ago

Yes, ladylaw, you've really got to walk that mile, huh? My folks are mixed race and they faced all sorts of crap here and in other places. Lawrence is still very homogenized (sp?) despite our "diversity". This scenario happens all the time, I guarantee. Imagine a pregnant mixed race lesbian couple trying to rent. "But Mrs. Sanders, we can't get married!".....Sorry that was really bad.

happyone 13 years, 1 month ago

The sad thing about all of this is the fact that Ms. Sanders will/is probably OK with her self in all this because afterall all of us sinners prosecute christians which in her delusional mind makes her right

PigFarmer 13 years, 1 month ago

It's the landlords business and they can serve whoever they want, you can't force them to accept anyone that walks in. You living in their house, you follow their rules.

Jacob Kaplan-Moss 13 years, 1 month ago

So, one_more_bob, if a paper prints a picture of, say Osama bin Ladin, does that imply that the paper implicitly supports his message?

happyone 13 years, 1 month ago

"You living in their house, you follow their rules." This maybe true if you are not paying money....But the only thing that should keep you from being able to rent a place to stay is your CRIMINAL RECORD and/or CREDIT!!! If you have missed payments then yes you are a credit risk IF NOT then you should not deny them a rental property. Remember you are paying them money its not like cousin JoeBob wants to sleep on your couch

remember_username 13 years, 1 month ago

Fangorn - Again, as in so many of the questions asked, I find that all our views in this country are driven into two camps. The real question that should be asked is: Should one persons right to "life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness" be restricted by the moral view held by another person? What happens when ignoring the moral viewpoint of the second person impinges upon that second persons right of "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness"? I also believe that much of our current polarization in the U.S. comes down to a clash of staunch moral viewpoints. I am of the opinion that the above questions cannot, and should not, be resolved using the rules of simple majority.

I'm still hoping a lawyer familiar with rental laws will jump into our postings and clear up the legal parts of the current issue just for informational reasons.

bugmenot 13 years, 1 month ago

You'd figure Emad would know discrimination considering his religion. But to take it a little further, I hope he get's discriminated against by home owners due to his differing religion. God forbid any god loving christian let a sinning muslim to live in their home.

PigFarmer 13 years, 1 month ago

Lawyers will answer however you want depending on who has the most money.

Terry Bush 13 years, 1 month ago

That's funny Carm. But in Kansas, as in most states, it is legal to discriminate based upon sexual orientation or other non-protected reasons. HOWEVER - the civil rights act of 1964 (which was passed b/c the Constitution apparently wasn't clear enough - and which many Democrats now believe is one reason they have lost their foothold in the south; LBJ pushed for its passage which hacked off a lot of red-neck voters) prohibits discrimination based upon membership in a protected class - gender, age, race, national origin or CREED. Couple that with the Fair Housing Act and it means a landlord of public housing cannot refuse to rent to someone because of their gender, age, race, national origin or religion. You can add to that the ADA protections that give similar protections to those with certain disabilities. BUT landlords can legally refuse to rent b/c of a person's conduct (e.g. I don't want anyone in my property who is - in the personal opinion of the landlord - acting immorally). The problem with subjective opinions is proof. Once the landlord/manager in this case claimed her refusal was based entirely on her moral beliefs, it became incumbent upon the plaintiffs to prove she was lying. It is not really easy to prove racist motivations.... It's why many discrimination cases are lost or aren't even brought in the first place! There are all kinds of excuses that can and are used to cover up the real motives for treating a Black (or other minority) worse.

Carm, as you know all too well, most racists cover up their TRUE motives and feelings on racial issues. They tell others (and often themselves) that their reactions are based upon some "higher" good, such as this claim that their not being married was the real reason they didn't get an apartment. BUT if the plantiff in this case brought forward a recent rental to an umarried WHITE couple - BINGO - she's proved to be a liar.

If it truly is a case of racism, I hope and pray that it's called out for what it is and that the $$ sends a HUGE message to anyone else evil and stupid enough to engage in such behaviors. If, however, her refusal truly was based upon her moral beliefs (whether you agree with them or not), the government still lets people have and exercise such personal stances.

Fangorn 13 years, 1 month ago

christie: Automatically equating any Muslim with the Taliban would be like claiming someone supports the terrorist activities of the Earth Liberation Front just because they think the city should mandate curbside recycling.

Confrontation: You should state your reasons for disagreeing with Christie. But your disagreement (or mine) doesn't make her an idiot.

Raven: Coming in late makes for a lot of posts to wade through, eh? To give you the Readers' Digest version of my answer: not renting to an unmarried couple is based on moral/ethical behavior which they willingly choose. One's race is not a moral/ethical choice, or even a choice at all.

To several: Jesus did associate with "tax-gatherers and sinners", but He also told them "Go, and sin no more."

r_u: Yes, we often come down on different sides of an issue, but I think we frequently agree on what is the right/important question to ask. This is a case where we agree on the question, if not on the answer, or more specifically in this case whose rights take precedent.

merrywidow033 13 years, 1 month ago

i agree, "who would want to live with a land/slum lady like that anyway?" but the point is, this person needs to be held accountable. if they would have just said "oh gee, i guess since you don't care for unmarried folks that's just fine and dandy" but these people actually took the initiative to do something about it. in the words of that legally blonde movie, snaps for them. it enrages me, i was denied housing in topeka, just 'cos i was in an unmarried relationship. it makes you feel like crap. anyway. screw that lady. and her prejudiced views. and closing. christie: for you to get all angered about the apartment, and then to say those words about the muslim guy is such a double standard.

Terry Bush 13 years, 1 month ago

While I am not a huge fan of governmental intervention into the private affairs of individuals (read "The Moon is a Harsh Mistress" by Robert Heinline to get a view on how extreme my views often are), anyone who lives in America and claims to want the government out of their personal business, who doesn't want to be a big old hypocrite, needs to step back and take a hard look at all the places where the government IS in their personal busines and they LIKE IT! E.g. Most landlords hate being told that they can't discriminate against women, minorities, old folks, Jews, Muslims, whatever. BUT they aren't upset if/when those folks are told (in return) that they have legal duties they owe the landlords. It's called a social contract folks. In return for certain agreed to rewards, we (as a society) agree to abide by certain policies designed (in theory) to make sure that the system doesn't grind to a complete halt. If you wish to see a return to the days of "might makes right", prepare your castle and stock it well. As for a lawyer providing the client who pays them with the services requested, how is that any different than other service providers (including landlords)? If it weren't for the fact that human beings tend to fight over things, lots of things, we wouldn't need laws or courts or lawyers. Those things arose (back in the hay day of "might makes right") in order to TRY to avoid people hacking each other into little pieces over who owned the pig!! Not everyone can afford a home (especially in these days of rising costs and sinking salaries). I personally know a ton of COLLEGE educated (advanced degreed) folks who rent...not because that is their first choice! It's really easy to ignore all the facts, and cast stones down from up on high. But anyone who is really being honest realizes that there are always lots of facts and factors making up any issue. Rarely is a thing completely black and white, one way or the other. For me - I think I am going to try to find a castle on an island.... To buy or to conquer. Because any place as so called open minded as Lawernce that still spawns ANY discussion that says that it is OK to refuse to rent to THOSE PEOPLE (based simply on their skin colors) shows me this culture cannot last much longer.....

donsalsbury 13 years, 1 month ago

There are two different discussions going here: 1)the question at the top of the page, and 2)what we think about the article/case that inspired question #1. I'll stay away from question #2, only because I don't want to spend an hour writing.

Landlords should and do have the right to refuse unmarried couples as tenants. This is an argument from behavior vs. nature. I'm not even going to get into homosexuality here, because that's a blurry line to argue on, and we've covered it elsewhere many times over. I apologize if my language is too opaque, but I'm trying to be succinct. The fact is that race is nature and relationships are behavior. Thus an unmarried couple choosing to live together is behavior, not nature. A black man or hispanic woman applying singly for an apartment is nature, not behavior. A black man married to a hispanic woman is behavior, but as the discrimination aspect of this arrangement is almost always based on the nature (race) of the two parties, it defaults back to nature.

In our country, the laws against discrimination by private parties is based on nature (with the exception of religion--again, I'm ignoring sexual preference here). Even so, there are some aspects of nature against which discrimination is permitted, such as senior discounts, lower prices for children, etc.

If a property owner chooses to lease or rent her property to another party, the law dictates that she cannot discriminate against the other party on the basis of nature (i.e. race). Behavior is not addressed in the law--I think the landlord could legally even discriminate based on religion, although I could be mistaken.

donsalsbury 13 years, 1 month ago

Part 2: Another distinction which appears to be misunderstood by some in this forum is the fact that real estate (shelter) is a very different thing than merchandise, which is not location-specific or shelter-related (usually). Also, we are discussing the lease of property, and not the sale of it. Thus the transaction we are discussing is closer to a business contract than a one-time financial transaction. Realizing this two-fold distinction, the two parties have the responsibility as well as the right (again within the confines of the law) to ensure that they are entering into this covenant or contract with a person with whom they choose to have a long-standing, continuing business relationship. It's not unlike marriage in that respect (again ignoring the same-sex arguments on both sides of that issue). So the bottom line is that the lessee has the right to rent or not rent from the property owner, and vice versa. We have seen this principle reflected in anecdotes posted above, where someone didn't like the landlord, and chose not to rent from them. Imagine a black landlord not being able to rent to any white tenants because they don't like the idea of renting from a black person. That clear example of discrimination is much harder to prove and may not even be illegal (again, I'm not sure about that), and thus the tenant has an easier time of things than the landlord has to freely choose her tenant.

I know this is an oversimplified argument (due to my own limitations), but I hope it clarifies more points than it clouds. People are free to rebut me on the facts and point out fallacies in my argument, but don't think that you can just call me an idiot and a bigot and think that you've won. Although I'm sure that people who will just call me those things will go ahead and think they've won and that they're pretty cool. Well, good for you. I think that a position in government or televised media is calling your name. Best wishes to you!

Terry Bush 13 years, 1 month ago

Repeat - Discrimination (by the government or by other covered entities - such as landlords or stores etc) is LEGAL - UNLESS the discrimination is based upon the person(s) being impacted membership in a protected group/class. That group covers - RACE, RELIGION (CREED), GENDER, AGE, NATIONAL ORIGIN (and with the addition of ADA laws - certain disabilities). Thus, it IS ONLY illegal for a landlord to refuse to rent to persons b/c of their race, religion, gender, national origin etc. (But good luck proving that was the real reason...)

It is not (currently) against state or federal law to refuse to rent an apartment to someone because of other reasons (i.e. the landlord can discriminate). Such as the landlord's dislike of children or pets....

People cry "I was ciscriminated against" all the time - and perhaps they are. However, to be AGAINST THE LAW it has to be discrimination by a covered entity (i.e. the government or some specifically (by statutes) covered business/person - like landlords - and discrimination based upon the person's membership in one of those groups.

Anything else comes down to personal preferences and beliefs. And we still are allowed to have those... for the most part....

If you want my prediction, in this case - I think the landlord will lose...But we shall see...

donsalsbury 13 years, 1 month ago

...Sorry for the high language and haughtiness...maybe I should go to law school or something and stop talking out of my you-know-where...

Hong_Kong_Phooey 13 years, 1 month ago

Craigers wrote: "That would be like God selling drunks beer, giving little rooms to single people to fornicate, or giving married people a secret place to commit adultery. "

God created beer to keep the Irish from conquering the world. The "little rooms" are called apartments. The secret place for married people is called a "hotel".

Looks like God is an enabler...

crohan1978 13 years, 1 month ago

Why the hell is everything that is intolerant, discrimination, etc, somehow always go back to "being Christian" As a Christian, I am offended that is what all of you think. I as a Christian, lived w/ my girlfriend for 3yrs before we were married, I as a Christian believe that abortion should not be allowed as birth control, rather it should only be allowed in cases of rape, and in cases where the mothers life is in danger. True, you may say that does not follow Christian beliefs, but you don't have to follow absolutely ever single thing to be a Christian. Do I believe living w/ my girlfriend before we got married is a sin, no, but I do know that if we had premarrital intercourse, that would be. There is a wide range of Christians in what they believe, so don't throw us all to the curb and view us as extremists! I am sick of the attacks on Christians and free passes to Judeism and Muslims all the time. You don't think any of those people belong to the so called religous right?? If you don't, then you are stupider than I thought.

Fact is, I think the landlords should have a right to reject unmarried couples from living together. It is their property, and they have a right to protect it as they see fit, as long as it is within the law. Lets say a couple gets an apartment together, and then they break up, what happens? There is a good chance the landlord has to deal w/ no payment or be shorted payment as a result, and have a messy contract situation. Not to say this never happens to married couples, because it does, but the risk is much higher w/ the couples that are not married.

David Ryan 13 years, 1 month ago

Okay, now we have some specifics to work with:

"Featuring that particular photo seems to indicate that somebody in the photographer, writer, editor, webmaster chain agrees with the t-shirt's message & is promoting it."

Could it be that the photographer, pressed for time, having multiple assignments for that day, went downtown to photograph the woman with the petition; walked up and took the shot, the girl in the photo having happened to be the person the woman with the petition had stopped on the street, and then went on with his day's work?

That's a more pedestrian explanation for the photo than your conspiracy theory. Occam's razor suggests we shave off explanations that are more complex and require a greater number of complex assumptions, in favor of explanations that require fewer and less complex assumptions.

Next, the implication of your logic is that a photographer, or an editor, agrees with, and is promoting, any subject contained within any photograph they choose to use.

According to that logic, an editor who ran a photo of a lynching would be "promoting" lynching, and any photographer who took a photograph of a lynching would be signalling that they agree with lynching and hope as well to "promote" it.

I don't accept that logic.

Rather, the conspiracy exists only in the eye of the beholder -- in this case, in your own head and nowhere else.

Here's a mantra, free of charge: "Just because I imagine something, that doesn't make it true. Just because I imagine something, that doesn't make it true. Just because I imagine something, that doesn't make it true."

Terry Bush 13 years, 1 month ago

Great Mantra Yellow Dog.... Perhaps EVERYONE who believes in conspiracies should use it once in awhile?!

wichita_reader 13 years, 1 month ago

Yes, landlords should have the right to refuse unmarried couple as tenants, although I don't agree with such a refusal.

For all those people saying that these people need to buy their own property and spart paying property taxes, your missing the big picture. Tenants do pay property taxes, as well as make mortgage payments, albeit indirectly. Of course, that is assuming the landlord has somewhat of a grasp of economics and builds the mortgage and tax payments into rent.

raven 13 years, 1 month ago

Fangorn: Thank you for your response. Seems I spend more time reading than posting, especially on days like today. I understand the fact that one is by choice (behavior) and one is not (nature) however it is my opinion that as long as the landlord is getting their money and the house is being taken care of it really shouldn't matter if the renters are "living in sin".

Crohan: I agree with you about Christians being stereotyped. I too am a Christian and do not believe that in certain cases abortion is wrong and am living with my boyfriend. Although, I must admit I struggle with whether or not I think this is a sin. Why does us being married make this so much better? We will get married, we are trying to have enough money. Although, I must raise a small point about the two maybe splitting up and one leaving. Most if not all apartments in Lawrence will rent to a group of college friends. The same could happen there, should they not be that anymore either?

Jacob Kaplan-Moss 13 years, 1 month ago

Bob -- if the LJWorld got ahold of Osama wearing a "Sue Hack" t-shirt, whouldn't that be a big story, and shouldn't they run the photo?

Or, try this one on for size: when CNN shows footage of Iraqis chanting "Death to America", does that mean CNN supports that point of view?

acg 13 years, 1 month ago

Wow, a lot of good comments today folks. I worked for a Lawrence landlord who wouldn't rent to people with kids. He would take dogs and cats before kids because children are destructive and loud. I think that Sanders woman is off her rocker. I don't think it was necessarily a married/unmarried thing because as the article reports it, she rented to an unmarried white couple after turning the couple in question down. Fishy to me. The couple that is suing should give up their lawsuit, because everyone sues too much and it's annoying and they should move on. Count themselves lucky they didn't end up living in this woman's apartment, with her creeping around, watching and judging. That would drive me crazy. Actually, having a landlord at all would be too much. My last landlord would come over and measure our grass. We'd see him out there, on his knees with a ($#()*$ ruler, and then he'd come trouncing up the walk hollering about city codes and the grass being 1/2 inch too high. Am I glad those days are over!!

Fangorn 13 years, 1 month ago

"God created beer to keep the Irish from conquering the world." LOL!! I love this place! :))

Terry Bush 13 years, 1 month ago

I am hi-jacking the discussion for a short commercial (SORRY!): is having a national contest for the best blog about or by female bloggers.... LJW's own blogger Misty Nuckolls is entered and is CURRENTLY in first place (over such other bloggers as Rosie O'Donnel and "dooce" - who are nationally known figures!). If you want to see a very deserving young woman win the cash prize and honors, please go to that site and vote for her web site blog - and do it from any/all computers you own...then pass along the information to all your kith and kin...The contest ends June 25th, and there will probably be huge pushes for the other bloggers, long about June 24th.....

End of Commercial. Carry on......

dcantrell 13 years, 1 month ago

I would like to call attention to how the media has portrayed the property manager and the couple. Multiple bloggers perceive her as crazy. I'm a journalism grad, and this sickens me to see how the LJWorld pitted the lady and the couple against one another.

On one side we have the inter-racial, unmarried and pregnant couple (supposedly without religion??) and on the other side we have a woman who is portrayed as ultra-conservative. She is portrayed as crazy and unstable. Now, this is not how I know either party to be, but the LJWorld has set it up that way.

Furthermore, in this town there is a great divide between the right and left. I really don't think it is a paper's job to further that division. It is to be a news provider and forum.

In conclusion everyone please pay notice to how the story is being written and the different positions within the text. Remember, we only know what the newspaper tells us.

David Ryan 13 years, 1 month ago

No one would claim that "the LJWorld (or any other newspaper, website, etc) exists in a vaccum & is unaffected by the experiences, opinions, beliefs of its writers, photographers and editors."

The question here is whether the original assumption -- that something insidious and subtextual is going on with the lead photo -- is warranted or not.

I humbly suggest it's not warranted.

The attempt to support your assumption by raising an obviously hyperbolic counter-stance is fairly fallacious: agreeing with the proposition that "no news organization exists in a vaccum" has nothing to do with accepting your claim that the photo is meant to subtly signifiy (the) bias (you believe exists) in JW coverage.

(This is an instance, I'd suggest, of the "Hostile Media Effect":

Ceallach 13 years, 1 month ago

I am not sure which is more harmful -- those who think Christianity is represented by Ms. Sanders or defenders of Christianity like Crohan1978 & Raven. Personally, I don't care for either side to represent me. Reminds me of what happened with the women's rights movement. We woke up one day and discovered that instead of being told what to do by a group of men we were being told what to do by a group of women. Didn't like that either.

btw, When was it decided that the Irish had conceded defeat in their quest to conquer the world? Maybe they are just waiting -- timing is everything ya know.

raven 13 years, 1 month ago

ceallach: I do not understand your comment, please explain.

Ceallach 13 years, 1 month ago

raven: in your 1:36 post you stated your agreement with Crohan regarding personal doubts about abortion and fornication. I personally do not have doubts about whether killing a child at any stage of its life is wrong or whether or not God winks at fornication because he knows peoples hearts. For me, these truths did not come over night but through reading the Word and praying for understanding.

I do not believe it is my duty to get between people and God to do his work in their lives. I have plenty to do between Him and myself. Some say that encourages and condones sin. I do not agree that I am doing either. I give my opinion and endeavor to learn enough to defend my faith when called upon to do so. The more I read, the more I realize that every commandment, every action, even the chastising of His children, is rooted in deep abiding love.

The Creator cannot fit into molds made by his creation (the god I believe in does not do this or that or the other). One God, one way, it's up to us to take it or leave it.

Richard Heckler 13 years, 1 month ago

The problem for the owners and manager may be inconsistency. If they rent to other unwed couples but refuse to rent because this couple is unwed, if that is in fact what the manager implied, I say they have legal problems.

As was stated prior this is discrimination...pure and simple. Better have a good lawyer.

Richard Heckler 13 years, 1 month ago

If they are accepting section 8 money it may now be jeopardy. It's all about civil rights.

raven 13 years, 1 month ago

Ceallach: I am glad that you have found your own personal views and have made peace with yourself and your religion. As you stated it did not happen over night, why then would you state that you find my personal conflicts simply stated in a blog harmful? Most everyone wrestles with issues of faith, ethics, etc. I do not find my own personal inner conflicts harmful to anyone but myself. Thank you for clarifying. Much appreciated.

misseve 13 years, 1 month ago

let me set this straight.. i having not been up long thought this was recent but this was 3 yrs ago... They are still together...hummm anyway. It shouldnt matter if they are married or not as long as all other ducks are in a row. They passed the checks and they had the money. who was it that thought this was about makin a fast buck.... you try living where you cant catch a break cause how you live. Religion isnt ground for being a biggot. God what now not renting to me cause i SPANK my children???

Mari Aubuchon 13 years, 1 month ago

Over the many years I have lived here and looked at rentals, I have encountered "no unmarried couple policies" as well as "no overnight guest" policies. Needless to say, I decided to take my money elsewhere. It is bad enough that tenants have next to no rights in KS without adding privacy violations into the mix. I do know that bi-racial couple face more housing discrimmination than any single ethnic group throughout much of the country, so why should there not be cases here as well?

Ceallach 13 years, 1 month ago

That's part of the beauty of it Raven. They are not my personal views. I realized that I could not make peace with God. The good news was that I didn't have to, Jesus had already done it. All of my views and plans accomplished no more that all the people who came and went before me. Through all the ages, mankind has neither created a new sin nor eliminated an old one. The Bible is not hard to read and understand. It is/was hard to say that I am/was wrong and take a different path. I use the /was because it is an ongoing process. I am not claiming that I have finished my race.

It seems harmful to me when those who claim to have trusted Christ with their eternal soul feel free to publicly discuss their inability to trust Him in their daily lives. The lack of confidence often provides unbelievers with validation for their disdain of Christ and Christians.

I was not trying to correct or instruct anyone with my statement. I just do not want to be grouped with Christians who either hear God telling them not to rent to sinners, or others who aren't sure sinning is wrong.

misseve 13 years, 1 month ago

What is sad is as the most "liberal" city in the state of kansas we are beating a dead horse. What is also sad is that even with "proof" that what she said and did we contrary to the religous convictions she holds so dear. I myself cant sit here an think that its ok cause the laws say it is. (im sorry i never post more than once on a topic but this chaps my little brown hide) hopefully what is right will prevail in the end

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