Ask Amy: Internet minister lacks class

FresnoJuly 28, 2013 

Dear Amy: My very nonreligious (raised Jewish) husband and his son recently decided they want my husband to perform the ceremony at his son's wedding. So my husband went online, filled out a form, paid a fee and now he is apparently an ordained minister and can marry people.

He heard that sometimes clergy members are upgraded to first class on airplanes. He went online and bought several shirts with clerical collars and is planning to wear them on the plane when he flies in the hope that he will get an upgrade.

Correct me if I'm mistaken, but I thought that it is Christian clergy that wear clerical collars.

For the last 20 years I can't tell you how many times my husband has made disparaging remarks about Christians. I find this whole thing with the collars and upgrade to be highly unethical.

What do you think?

— Disgusted

Dear Disgusted: Your husband should imagine an anti-Semite donning traditional Orthodox garb and basically making a mockery of both faiths; that's how offensive his behavior is. His online clergy status might be basically legitimate, but the task of marrying someone is no joke, and it shouldn't be treated like one.

I contacted a major airline about this legendary "upgrade" issue and was told they are not aware of this as an official policy, though you can assume that some upgrade opportunities are made unofficially and spontaneously at the gate.

You should be honest with your husband about how wrong and unethical this is. And then you should not give him any further attention for this stunt.

The next time you fly, if your husband pulls out his clerical collar, tell him, "Way to stay classy, honey." Go to your assigned seat and hope that no one on the flight assumes you are together

Dear Amy: Responding to "Car Screamer," I have another remedy for road rage.

My friend responds to thoughtless acts on the road by giving herself a point every time she is able to brush off these annoyances.

She places a sticky note on her dash, and when she reaches 10 points, she rewards herself with something nice.

— Calm in Berkeley

Dear Calm: I love this. Thank you.


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