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Massachusetts man fired from corporation over Christian belief in traditional marriage

"Same-sex marriage is the law--get used to it!" he was told

POSTED: October 30, 2009

A Massachusetts man was fired from a national retail corporation because of his traditional beliefs on same-sex marriage.  Peter Vadala was formally dismissed from his job as second deputy manager of the Brookstone store at Boston’s Logan Airport on August 12, 2009, after a supervisor reported him to Human Resources regarding an incident two days earlier.

As Peter described the incident (see video above), he came to work on August 10 and began his day normally. A female manager from another store was in the store and began talking to Peter about her upcoming marriage.  When Peter asked “where is he taking you for the honeymoon,” she corrected him and said she was not getting married to "he" but to another woman.

Peter did not immediately react, but when the manager sensed Peter’s discomfort with the subject of same-sex “marriage”, the woman apparently continued bringing it up to Peter throughout the day, reiterating that she was getting married to another woman. Finally, after the fourth or fifth time she brought it up, Peter remarked that his Christian beliefs did not accept same-sex marriage. At that point the woman became very angry and bluntly told Peter that he needed to “get over it” and said that she would be immediately contacting the Human Resources department.

A few hours later Peter was notified by a Human Resources representative that he was suspended from work without pay, effective immediately. Two days later, on August 12, after some further interaction with the Human Resources department, he was formally notified that he was terminated from the company.

Brookstone’s termination letter to Peter states that “in the State of Massachusetts, same-sex marriage is legal.” It goes on to describe Peter’s actions as constituting “harassment” and that his comments were “inappropriate and unprofessional.” It further accuses him of “imposing” his beliefs upon others.

In addition, the letter curiously quotes another employee who did not witness the incident, but who says Peter told her that he considers homosexual lifestyle to be “deviant”. Peter strongly denies ever having said that to that to the other employee.

          READ: Letter of termination to Peter from Brookstone