When job applicant Don Yeager refused to provide a social security number to his prospective employer, he was shown the door.  He sued, claiming that identifying himself by a number violated his religious beliefs.  In a short decision, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that his claim was properly dismissed.  Yeager v. FirstEnergy, Jan. 28, 2015.  Since federal law requires employers to collect social security numbers, it cannot be considered a reasonable accommodation of his religion for his employer to violate federal tax law.

Simple enough, but that summary is boring.  In Life of Pi, two stories are told of the shipwreck and the narrator asks, “Which story do you prefer?”  So here it is again, as told through classic rock song titles.  Which story do you prefer?

Part I: The Worksite

Plaintiff:  I feel like a number (Bob Seger)

Company:  Give a little bit (Supertramp)

Plaintiff: I won’t back down (Tom Petty)

Company: Surrender (Cheap Trick)

Plaintiff: I’d do anything for love, but I won’t do that (Meatloaf)

Company:  Beat it.  (Michael Jackson)

Plaintiff:  Don’t do me like that (Tom Petty)

Part II: The Courthouse

Plaintiff to Court:  Gimme shelter (Rolling Stones)

Company to Court: People are strange (Doors)

Court: Let it be.  (Beatles)

Part III:  The Recap

Company: Who’s crying now? (Journey)

Plaintiff: Hey hey what can I do (Led Zeppelin)

Moral:  I fought the law (and the law won) (Clash)