A friend of mine works at a religious organization as an employee. They are also a naturalized citizen, who is white, but is of a minority ethnic group (for background).
The org has sent out several emails over time focusing on racism, but with the implication that white people are the sole problem of all racism. (which, let me be clear, here in the US, there is of course centuries of legitimate beef!) The issue being that they are receiving these messages and feel insulted and as if they're being disparaged by the company itself, solely for their race. This person is open minded and believes that there are issues with equality in the country, but receives these emails and believes from time to time that they are being told that all white people are a problem, rather than focusing on issues with inclusivity and equality or racism in general, just very specifically focusing on white people.
They recently received a company wide meeting invite for a meeting discussing the concept of whiteness and how it impacts an organization and individuals, going on to liken "whiteness" itself to white supremacy.
My friend wrote a response, asking not to be included on future meeting invites, explaining that the one in question and others have made it feel as though their 'whiteness' was a problem, and that they felt it was a pejorative term and would like to not receive remarks like this in the future.
The business later sent another email that includes some description of the meeting itself, that it is sent to an organization wide distribution list and will not have an ability for people to opt out (therefore, my interpretation being, they are ignoring their request to stop receiving the offensive remarks in these emails into the future).
It goes on to state that the next session will be on White Fragility, and states that "by definition", racism is based on the concept of whiteness, which is enforced by power and violence.
It has a definition of 'white fragility' later on that paired with the usage of the term in the email seems somewhat offensive... in the same way that hearing 'black fragility' or other combinations of the words would seem, from the negative connotations of the word fragility, of course pejorative to whatever group is paired with it.
My question is... This seems like a form of harassment and discrimination. Is it? Are there additional steps they should take to address the issue? I've told my friend they need to find a lawyer and consider whether they have a case, as they'd included HR and their own manager, as well as the other person who's sending these messages, and are still receiving them.
They've told me messages like these have been going out for years and it's been very upsetting having to read them and having to confront them specifically in order to request that they stop receiving them... just to have it continue. They are, of course, very worried they'll lose their job over speaking up over it.
**Are religious organizations allowed to discriminate based on race, is this a moot point?**
I've seen references on the internet that the supreme court has ruled that religious org's can discriminate based on religion, but I haven't seen on race, such as in Hosanna-Tabor Evangelical Lutheran Church & Sch. v. E.E.O.C. (2012) (https://mtsu.edu/first-amendment/article/926/discrimination-by-religious-organizations).