Religious Exemption

I eschew direct deposits
To my bank account, because it’s
A religious violation of my deeply held beliefs!

I avoid all on-line banking
And it’s Jesus Christ I’m thanking
Cos he gave his life so bravely to legitimize my beefs

If by rules I am confronted
So I can’t get what I wanted
I’ve devised a simple strategy, which cannot be denied:

Any threat to my behavior,
I break out my Lord and Savior!
Though the law may be against me, I’ve got Jesus on my side!

A report out of Akron, Ohio, finds a new attempt at seeking a religious exemption–not same-sex this or birth-control that, but direct deposit banking.

An Austintown Township man has filed a federal complaint against FirstEnergy alleging that he was fired over religious objections to direct deposit of his paycheck into a bank account.

The civil complaint filed in U.S. District Court by Lee Yeager claims that FirstEnergy fired him in 2005.

Yeager, who according to the suit is a Christian Fundamentalist, says that he held a sincere religious belief that conflicted with FirstEnergy’s direct deposit employment requirement.

The lawsuit does not cite any specific biblical references that are behind the objection.

So, yeah. I could see objecting to direct deposit for secular reasons. I mean, how are you going to tuck away a portion of your paycheck for gambling and carousing without anyone finding out about it, if you aren’t the one making the deposits?

But this guy claims a religious conflict? I’ll open this up to my religious experts here–what could such a conflict be? Does he want a bit less transparency when it comes to tithing? (that’s me being cynical again…)


  1. sqlrob says

    Perhaps just an objection to using a bank in general? Objections against institutions that get their income through interest seems like it could be a reasonable guess.

  2. Pierce R. Butler says

    And sqlrob gets it on the first try! From

    The case was just filed in federal court last week because the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission only recently issued a right-to-sue letter, according to his attorney, Michael Rossi of Youngstown.

    Rossi said Yeager’s Christian Fundamentalist beliefs require that he not have a bank account. He said Yeager believes banks participate in “usury,” which constitutes loaning money at unreasonably high rates.

  3. Michael E. Brooks says

    He probably thinks that direct deposit is one more step toward the so-called “cashless society” that the alleged soon-coming “antichrist” is supposed to impose on the world.

  4. Die Anyway says

    I hope he wins his case. In fact, I hope lots and lots of Christians, Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Sikhs, etc. file and win special religious exemption lawsuits. I don’t see anything happening in the legislatures to rein these laws in until the law suits engendered by them become frivolous and burdensome. The more and sillier these lawsuits are, the more likely we are to get these special exemptions repealed.

  5. John Horstman says

    I support any lawsuit that exposes the absurdity of ever offering special religious considerations within a supposedly secular legal framework. As for the religious objection itself, it has about as much support as Christian objections to buggery/sodomy or masturbation – inference from a couple of lines in scripture. It’s not more of a leap to consider the condemnation of moneychangers in the temple as a refutation of banking entirely.

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