After Offering ‘Church Bulletin’ Discount, Pennsylvania Restaurant Will Have To Extend Offer to Everyone

Remember over the summer when atheist John Wolff went to the website for a local Lancaster County, Pennsylvania restaurant called Prudhomme’s Lost Cajun Kitchen and found this ad?

A discount for a church bulletin? Was that discriminatory against atheists? Wolff figured it was and filed a complaint with the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission. The Freedom From Religion Foundation also sent the restaurant a few warning letters (PDF).

After all this time, there’s finally a resolution to the matter.

The Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission approved a Conciliation Agreement with the restaurant back in September (PDF) and Wolff was informed about the decision this week (yay, bureaucracy):

Respondent will continue to give a discount for any bulletin from any group oriented around the subject of religious faith[,] including publications from the Freedom From Religion Foundation[,] as long as they maintain the Sunday discount program.

Works for me. That statement basically replaces the word “church” in the discount offer with “bring-us-anything-you-want-please-just-eat-here.”

So, how are the restaurant owners taking this decision?

They’re calling it a victory! Somehow…

Prudhomme’s claimed victory, with attorney Randall Wenger noting the restaurant will continue offering the Sunday discount promotion.

Reading the rest of this article in the York Daily Record, it doesn’t sound like the owners or their lawyer are really pleased with the verdict, no matter how they spin it. but, hey, if they want to call this a win…

They wanted to give a discount to religious customers, to make them feel special. They wanted to give people an incentive to be religious and go to church. They tried to pretend that wasn’t the case, even suggesting that atheists could just walk into a church and grab a bulletin without sitting through the service in order to take advantage of the discount. Because that’s normal behavior.

But they can’t do any of that anymore. Now, they have to treat all their customers equally.

Too bad for them, right?

Incidentally, I just visited their website and saw that the “church bulletin” discount is still up and running as before…

How long will it take before they accept the ruling against them and correct their offer?

About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the editor of Friendly Atheist, appears on the Atheist Voice channel on YouTube, and co-hosts the uniquely-named Friendly Atheist Podcast. You can read much more about him here.