Cedric Hayden, a Seventh-day Adventist and member of the Oregon Senate, has filed workplace complaints after the Senate president did not excuse him to attend church. Hayden "alleged in complaints to the Bureau of Labor and Industries and to the Legislative Equity Office that President Rob Wagner violated his religious freedom by denying his requests to be excused to attend a church service on Saturday," according to reporting by Julia Shumway and Ben Botkin for the Oregon Capital Chronicle.
Also, here’s both a portrait, then a low-angle closeup, of Oregon Pioneer, the 22-ft, 8 1/2-ton, 23k gold leaf-finished, hollow bronze statue that stands at the capitol’s apex, and is artist Ulric Ellerhusen’s idealization of the Oregonian spirit:
Another early complaint about the structure was that the cupola resembled a “paint can” rather than traditional domes on other capitols, including the earlier Oregon structures. It was even called a “squirrel cage”, lacking in majesty.
Does anyone else feel that this State Senator should not have run for a job that required Saturday hours on occasion? Oregon has some serious problems, and they are not all solved M-F, 9-5. If this Senator had no intention of working necessary overtime on behalf of the citizens of Oregon, in whatever capacity is required, he should not have run, and should step down. The church doesn’t need a black eye over this. Just my opinion. I am a former Oregonian.
I agree. We pay janitors to sweep the floors in our hospitals. We pay facilities people to keep the lights on in those same buildings, and kitchen staff to cook food for not only patients and visitors, but also the doctors and nurses who work 7x24 (who really could bring their own lunch). We pay musicians to play the organ in churches. We demand that our pastors and teachers to work on the Sabbath. If you want to get nit-picky about it, consider that we use electricity in our homes and churches on the Sabbath, which comes from power plants that are staffed by people 7x24 - so we are indirectly employing these people on the Sabbath.
It seems to me that keeping the government running is similarly important in our modern culture, especially when there is an urgent need, as I think was the case here.
I actually know the Hayden family. Cedric’s father way my childhood dentist, and also my parents’, and we went to the same churches in and around Eugene, OR. Our dads were friends for a time until Cedric’s father slow-quit dentistry for a political career, at which point it became clear that he was very conservative and was pushing for, according to my dad, all the wrong things. I am pretty sure Cedric went to the same SDA school as I did, though he is several years younger and I don’t remember him personally.
Thirty-two years ago when I wrote my law school application essays, I cited religious liberty as one of the causes I hoped to further as a lawyer. At the time, “religious liberty” interventions by SDAs in Canada consisted almost exclusively of SDAs or similarly situated individuals petitioning the courts to force and require private employers to make “reasonable accommodation” for the special rights of certain religious folk. In my youthful naïvety I supported such initiatives. Today I have little patience for most of these claims for special rights.
If a society such as the one described in the Old Testament legends really existed, does one think that the Israelite magistrates, decision-makers and elders would never have met to discuss matters during “sabbath”?