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Why does anti-discrimination feel like discrimination?

29 Oct

We are in the process of planning and booking a vacation in 2017. I had researched and considered a boatload of options for airfare, hotels, B&B’s, tours, rental cars, and more. One option we considered was using Airbnb for one of our hotels. That is, until I received the following note this morning from the organization.

The Airbnb Community Commitment

Hi,

Earlier this year, we launched a comprehensive effort to fight bias and discrimination in the Airbnb community. As a result of this effort, we’re asking everyone to agree to a Community Commitment beginning November 1, 2016. Agreeing to this commitment will affect your use of Airbnb, so we wanted to give you a heads up about it.

What is the Community Commitment?

You commit to treat everyone—regardless of race, religion, national origin, ethnicity, disability, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation or age—with respect, and without judgment or bias.

How do I accept the commitment?

On or after November 1, we’ll show you the commitment when you log in to or open the Airbnb website, mobile or tablet app and we’ll automatically ask you to accept.

What if I decline the commitment?

If you decline the commitment, you won’t be able to host or book using Airbnb, and you have the option to cancel your account. Once your account is canceled, future booked trips will be canceled. You will still be able to browse Airbnb but you won’t be able to book any reservations or host any guests.

On the one hand, I agree with Airbnb’s desire to treat all people with respect and dignity. We are all created in God’s image and should be treated as such. However, to tell me that I am not welcome in the Airbnb community unless I agree with their values and convictions feels a lot like discrimination. It sure feels like Airbnb is passing judgment on those whose religion leads them to different convictions on these topics.

 
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Posted by on October 29, 2016 in Culture, Travel

 

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