"Administrative law judge Robert N. Spence found Friday that Jack Phillips of Masterpiece Cakeshop in Denver, Colo. violated the law when he turned away David Mullins, 29, and Charlie Craig, 33, from his shop last year. In his written decision, Spence ordered that Phillips "cease and desist from discriminating" against gay couples, or face financial penalties, and cited Colorado state law that prohibits businesses from refusing service based on race, sex, marital status or sexual orientation. [...]
"According to the complaint, Phillips told the couple that the store policy was to deny service to customers who wished to order baked goods for a same-sex wedding, based on his religious beliefs. Phillips told the men, "I'll make you birthday cakes, shower cakes, sell you cookies and brownies, I just don't make cakes for same-sex weddings.
"The judge's decision states in its Finding of Facts that Phillips believes creating same-sex wedding cakes would be "displeasing God and acting contrary to the teachings of the Bible. In concluding that Masterpiece Cakeshop acted unlawfully, a CCRC investigation also showed evidence that Phillips was willing to bake a cake for the "marriage" of a pair of dogs, but not for two women. [...]
"Nicolle Martin, an attorney for Masterpiece Cakeshop, told The Associated Press that the judge's decision was "reprehensible" and "antithetical to everything America stands for. He can't violate his conscience in order to collect a paycheck," Martin said. "If Jack can't make wedding cakes, he can't continue to support his family. And in order to make wedding cakes, Jack must violate his belief system. [...] Philips is currently considering an appeal of the judge's order."
So, a cake for hetero dog marriage is no problem. But a cake for homosexual human marriage is an outrage before God and America; one that is holding poor Philip hostage for a paycheck.
Well, the solution is simple and obvious. Now that marriage equality has made the cake business so clearly against Philip's religion, it's time to either switch religions or get out of the cake business.
Religious belief does not trump State Law.
I always describe myself as a libertarian at the liberal end of the spectrum. I think business people (especially small business people) should have latitude to turn away business they don't want. I see atheist rights as just as tied to Freedom of (from) Religion as the rights of religious people.
If I were to start a cake shop specializing in gay wedding cakes, why shouldn't I have the right to turn away someone who wants me to do a heterosexual cake?
Likewise, I feel that if a clinic has the right to perform abortions or dispense morning after pills, which it should, a pharmacist down the road should likewise have the right to not stock morning after pills.
You're totally missing my question, which was basically SHOULD there be a difference? In other words, I'm calling the laws into question. Do we actually need laws that make a baker put a pair of men on top of a wedding cake if he doesn't want to do that, or is that a case of the law overreaching a bit?
Withholding services to enforce unrelated moral values infringes on the freedoms of others.
What freedom? The freedom to get a cake baked by me rather than the baker down the road?
You are like those generals who are always fighting the last war. You seriously can see a day when America could relapse into a situation where blacks, Jews, or even Arab-Americans would be unable to find a place to buy a cake?
I commented on
America has been down this road before with racism.
I should have quoted.
We no longer live in the 1800's or even 1900's.
I don't think forcing people to ACT in a way we want them to act is a real solution. After all, if I were an anti-gay baker I could just make them a crappy cake. Mission not accomplished.
Do we also have the right to FORCE a Christian baker to bake an atheist oriented cake? If so, they have the right to force an atheist baker to bake a "Stop the war on Christmas" cake.
The government should stay out of this sort of thing.
Then, no. I don't think discrimination against a minority group, especially based on an immutable quality such as race or sexual orientation, should be legal.
So, should it be illegal for me, a heterosexual, to not want to marry a lesbian? Why would a lesbian want to marry me? Oh,maybe for my money. But suppose that I don't mind my mate having money. I just don't want to marry a lesbian. Should I be sent to jail or just stoned?
Or, is this example of discrimination not covered by your sweeping generalization?
I'm with the Constitution on this one. I think equality under the law, as form of social justice, is essential in a free society. Institutionalized inequality is a form of oppression.
What is "institutional" about baking wedding cakes? When I think of institutions, I think of government institutions: the courts, licensing boards, public education, and things like that. Not bakeries.
If your religion says "no cakes for blacks" it confers no right to forbid blacks from buying your cakes, it disqualifies you from the cake business
Well, that's an attitude, not a fact. (Passing laws creates legal facts, but those "facts" are merely the expression of people's attitudes.) If someone doesn't want to serve blacks, and he's willing to lose all the black business, he's just shooting himself in the foot, as it were. I see no need for the Government to pile on.
Not being able to buy a sweet isn't quite the same issue as not being able sit on a public bus or not being able to buy a business license.
We need laws that make anti-gay bigots serve gay couples at their businesses, yes.
How about a business that simply doesn't serve couples? Is there some Constitutional issue there as well?
Who is forcing the baker to act? He is not being asked to like or approve of same-sex marriage. He is simply being asked to provide a service which he has agreed to provide to the public. He doesn't get to define who the public is on a whim.
When did the business person sign this agreement to serve anyone who wants to do business? Have you never walked into a business and seen the sign "We reserve the right to refuse business to anyone"? If I want to enter into a contract (agreement) with you, you have the right to say no, even if I'm a female black Jew, and you don't have to explain why.