A Plea To My Many Gay Etc. Relatives, In-Laws, and Outlaws

If someone won’t bake you the wedding cake of your dreams, I implore you, FIND ANOTHER FARKING BAKER! How tough can it be? There are literally thousands and thousands of bakers who would happily take your money to make gay etc. wedding cakes all day long.

But nooooo, that’s not good enough for some of you. Some of you want EVERYONE to bow to your sexual orientation, no exceptions allowed. The Colorado baker has to burn at the stake to slake your bloodlust … sorry, my dearest family and friends, but all that does is make people like myself, people who normally strongly support gay rights of all kinds, shake our heads at your monumental suicidal stupidity … after years of progress since Stonewall, you are literally snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.

oregon bakers.png

You are setting the cause of gay rights back by decades by your vindictive actions, cheering and high-fiving as you drove the young Oregon Christian couple out of business and into bankruptcy. Please don’t fool yourselves into thinking that there is no price to be paid for that.

Let me ask you. Would you use a lawsuit to force a young gay couple to bake a cake saying

Good News!

Evil Faggots Will

Burn In Hell!

 and when they refused to bake your cake, drive them into bankruptcy?

Would you?

Didn’t think so … nobody should be forced to carry another person’s unwanted message. Freedom of speech includes the freedom to NOT speak.

So I implore you … simply find another baker, and we can live in peace and perhaps even mutual respect.

Heck, tell you what, I’ll make you a heck of a deal.

If you’ll agree to find another baker, I promise I will never, ever sue to force a gay baker to bake a cake with a virulent, viciously cutting anti-gay motto on top …

Can’t say fairer that that!

Setting all levity aside, in utmost sincerity, I remain,

Your family, your friend, your unabashed supporter always. You do you!

w.

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298 thoughts on “A Plea To My Many Gay Etc. Relatives, In-Laws, and Outlaws

  1. Do you say this to a black couple who are refused wedding services by a baker, or a printer, or a florist, or a hotelier who don’t serve black couples because of their religious belief? “Drive around the city until you find a business that will cater for black weddings?”

    These “Christian” businesses chose to put themselves in this position. Sweet Cakes made over $100,000 out of their GoFundMe campaign, and Jack Phillips GoFundMe campaign is already over $57,000. These hucksters will get publishing deals and book tours, like the notorious Kentucky Town Clerk Kim Davis who will be able to retire early in comfort out of her book earnings.

    As for your message about faggots burning in Hell, that would be legally refusable for any or no reason. You would get nowhere suing a gay baker for refusing is, because he would not be refusing you for a discriminatory reason, i.e. because you are straight, or because you are white or because you are male.

    The Sweet Cakes and Masterpiece bakeries are refusing to a gay couple a service they provide to straight couples. They could have worked around this, e.g. by allowing customers to write their own message, or by running it through their church, or by outsourcing the message writing part, but they broke the law by refusing it on the grounds of gender discrimination and sexual orientation discrimination. You can disagree with the law, but they broke it.

    As to whether suing them has been good for the LGBT cause, well, clearly not, given the way it’s being misrepresented, but the gay couple were within their legal rights. Forcing them to hunt for businesses that don’t refuse gay couples is a burden not placed on heterosexual couples, who already own the planet.

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      • Are straight couples sending a “message” when they buy a wedding cake, or is the cake the baker’s message? I never heard of this message idea until gay couples started buying wedding cakes, and suddenly every cake is a “religious message”. News to me.

        In fairness, why don’t these bakeries at least warn their customers by putting up a sign saying that the wedding cake they’re ordering is a religious cake and that it is really a message about sexual orientation? Atheists could at least walk out of the shop with the wallet intact, and gay customers could be spared the humiliation of a lecture about their sinfulness in front of all the other customers. Likewise for bakeries, photographers, florists, printers, hoteliers whose religious beliefs forbid them from serving Blacks.

        I never heard of ‘Religious Freedom’ until businesses were no longer able to refuse service to LGBT customers. Religious Freedom laws cropping up across the country have one purpose and one purpose only, and that is to stick to gay people. But if you think that is a good thing, just wait till Islam wakes up to what Religious Freedom gives its adherents the right to do.

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      • Derek Williams August 26, 2018 at 3:29 pm

        Are straight couples sending a “message” when they buy a wedding cake, or is the cake the baker’s message? I never heard of this message idea until gay couples started buying wedding cakes, and suddenly every cake is a “religious message”. News to me.

        The Supreme Court ruled clearly in the American flag burning case that symbols [e.g. wedding cakes] are absolutely part of speech, and as such are protected under the First Amendment. And yes, a wedding cake is indeed such a symbol. Have you heard of the language of flowers? Surely you are aware that symbols carry messages? If not, consider the swastika … can a Jewish baker refuse a request to put a swastika on a cake?

        I say absolutely yes they can refuse such a request, whether the person asking for the swastika is white or black, gay or straight.

        Again I say, it is NOT ABOUT RELIGION, any more than it is about sex or race. It is about the MESSAGE.

        It is about the absolute right of anyone under the First Amendment to refuse to carry your message. It’s your dang-a-lang message, carry it yourself or find someone happy to carry it.

        As to the idea that you might have to look to find someone willing to carry your message, boo-hoo. That’s the nature of messages. Some are popular, some are not. If you cannot find some baker to bake your message, bake it yourself …

        w.

        Liked by 1 person

        • No, the Jewish baker can NOT be forced to carry a swastika, so long as he refuses the request from everybody. However if he accepted the swastika commission from a white man but then refused it to a black man, or vice versa, then it would be discrimination, and yes the black man could sue. It is inconceivable that the Jewish baker would paint a swastika for a person of any colour, or gender or sexual orientation, so your point is moot.

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          • Derek wrote in part: “[…] so long as he refuses the request from everybody.”

            You wrote it and I believe you don’t realize what you wrote. It is precisely that. The baker did and he would. The baker would have refused to make that cake with that message regardless of who came into his shop requesting that message.

            That request would have been refused if the Pope, Satan, or any ‘straight’ person had requested the cake. It is absolutely NOT about who is requesting the message. It IS all about the message.

            Everybody who requests such a custom cake will be turned down in that shop. That is nearly the definition of absolutely fair and non-discriminatory treatment of every person. Everybody will be equally refused. Yay! The equality of treatment you demand as a gay individual has been dutifully fulfilled by the lowly baker. You will be treated exactly the same as anyone else.

            The people requesting the cake were not discriminated against in any way. They were refused absolutely the same as anyone else on this planet would have been who requested the same cake in that shop by that baker. You can’t expect more fair treatment than that.

            I have been following the conversation, and your claim of unequal, discriminatory treatment by the baker holds no water. Look at what you wrote.

            Liked by 2 people

          • The “message” has been deemed (by the baker at least) to be the custom cake itself. If he provides a custom cake for a white couple but then refuses a custom cake for a black couple, because of their race, then that is discrimination, regardless of whether it is his religion that is telling him to do that or not.

            You could argue that such discrimination should be legal, and as it happens in most of America it IS legal to fire people for being gay, to evict them from their homes, to expel them from school, to refuse healthcare and pretty much anything you like, including custom cakes. Unfortunately for this baker, he lives in the state of Colorado where it is not legal to refuse goods and services to people on the grounds of their sexual orientation.

            He could have moved his business to a state where anti-gay discrimination is lawful, and then this conversation would never have arisen.

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          • Derek Williams August 26, 2018 at 7:02 pm

            The “message” has been deemed (by the baker at least) to be the custom cake itself. If he provides a custom cake for a white couple but then refuses a custom cake for a black couple, because of their race, then that is discrimination, regardless of whether it is his religion that is telling him to do that or not.

            You are claiming that if a painter accepts a commission to do a custom painting, he must accept a commision for any custom painting. After all, it’s the exact same thing in your mind. For you, one custom painting is just like any custom painting, and one custom cake is just like any custom cake …

            Except they are not the same at all. In general no two paintings are the same, and no two custom cakes are the same. If I make a custom cake celebrating Thanksgiving, you would argue I must make a custom cake celebrating Ramadan … sorry, doesn’t work that way.

            Here you are done in by your own words, viz:

            “But if he were to put a swastika on a cake for a white customer but then refuse the exact same product for a black customer, because he was black, then again, that would be discrimination.”

            The Colorado baker is NOT making “the exact same product”, because the message is different. Two custom paintings are not “the exact same product”, nor are two custom cakes, because they have very different messages.

            I say, again and again, the issue is the MESSAGE, not the CUSTOMER. The Colorado baker was happy to serve gay customers. The unpleasant couple that sued him had bought his products before. That alone proves that the issue is not the customer but the message.

            And you think this advances your cause of gay acceptance in society?

            Really?

            Because unless your cause also includes pissing off a lot of people, and stirring up mass antagonism to gay people, it’s not getting advanced by suing Christian bakers into bankruptcy … you may not have noticed, but out here in the real world, most of us don’t like to see that kind of underhanded tactics used against any baker, gay or straight.

            w.

            Liked by 2 people

          • Derek write in part:

            If he provides a custom cake for a white couple but then refuses a custom cake for a black couple, because of their race, then that is discrimination, regardless of whether it is his religion that is telling him to do that or not.

            All evidence points to the fact that he would have refused to make that custom cake regardless of who was requesting the custom cake. There’s no evidence to my knowledge that he will refuse to bake a custom cake for anyone, regardless of the requestor’s race, religion, creed, sexual orientation, number of toes, or if they looked ugly in plaid.

            Do you honestly believe that the baker would have refused to bake a custom, CUSTOM! cake with the message, “Congratulations! Fluffy had a litter of SIX kittens! Who wants a kitten?” for that gay couple?

            I doubt it. I believe ‘Kitty Kake’ would have been on the way the next day.

            He did not turn down the gay couple as such. There’s no evidence that he would have refused to bake a custom cake for that couple if the message did not go against his beliefs. He turned down the commission of a wedding cake that celebrated their marriage.
            .
            .
            .
            I talk to the trees
            But they don’t listen to me
            I talk to the stars
            But they never hear me

            The breeze hasn’t time
            To stop and hear what I say
            I talk to them all in vain
            ~Paint Your Wagon

            Does anybody have a count of how many times and in how many ways it has been pointed out to Derek that the whole incident was not about who was doing the asking but solely about what was being asked?

            Maybe someone could graph it or something.

            Liked by 1 person

          • Willis – No, I am saying nothing of the kind. I am saying refusal of service is fine, for any reason or no reason apart from the protected class of the disliked minority, i.e. race, gender, or (in some states) sexual orientation.

            If you refuse to provide a service because someone is black, that is discrimination.
            If you refuse to provide a service because someone is female, that is discrimination.
            If you refuse to provide a service because someone is gay, that is discrimination.

            Phillips is refusing to provide a custom wedding cake because the couple are gay. What other kind of wedding could a gay couple have other than a gay wedding? His refusal is evangelistic coercion for them to be straight and marry a female apiece, whereupon they would both get their respective wedding cakes.

            You may well argue that such discrimination shoud be legal, and in the 3rd category, it mostly IS legal in the USA, but in those states where it is illegal, the law is the law. You have also argued that winning at the court has meant losing in the court of public opinion, and I have already agreed with you, that these wins have been Pyrrhic Victories at best. Given how badly this has turned out, and how ineffectaully the LGBT side have argued the case, I would prefer to let the plaintiffs win at law, but then voluntary forego their compensation.

            You keep saying we’re “bankrupting Christian bakers” as though that is our aim in life, but the fact is none of these bakers are ultimately bankrupted. On the contrary, they’re making a pile out of the deep pockets of religious fundamentalists, with GoFundMe campaings, publishing deals and book tours.

            Memories Pizza did so well out of losing their case that they were able to shut their store and retire on the donations. They raised nearly $850,000:
            https://www.gofundme.com/MemoriesPizza

            There are rivers of gold in bigotry. Follow the money.

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          • Derek Williams August 27, 2018 at 6:05 am

            Memories Pizza did so well out of losing their case that they were able to shut their store and retire on the donations. They raised nearly $850,000:
            https://www.gofundme.com/MemoriesPizza

            There are rivers of gold in bigotry. Follow the money.

            Your claim that the Oregon couple went through the heartbreak of losing their business and incurring the hatred of intolerant people like you around the world simply in order to make a profit is truly and profoundly despicable. Once again you are twisting the facts to make gay people the victims.

            They weren’t the victims. The bakers were the victims, despite your ugly insinuations. They didn’t wake up one morning and say “Let’s make lots of money by claiming we can’t carry someone’s gay message”.

            You have the opportunity here to disown that nasty opinion as a momentary loss of consciousness … or not.

            Your choice … lots of folks watching … I said before that you are doing huge damage to your own cause, but I had no clue you were about to commit suicide right here in public.

            w.

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          • Willis, Let me be absolutely clear, I didn’t say, and nor do i believe that the bakers went into business with the objective of losing a discrimination case so they could retire on the proceeds of their GoFundMe campaigns. Nevertheless, that’s what has actually happened.

            I mentioned this in response to your accusation that they had been “driven into bankruptcy”. Even though that wasn’t their original intention, their windfall of almost $850,000 shows that discrimination pays, whereas the gay couple were awarded about 1/8 of that, along with a bucket of public hatred for their win.

            On balance, it’s bigots 10, gays Zero. So if anyone is “gloating”, it’s not the gay couples, who are now pariahs, despite winning their case at law.

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    • Your obsession with skin color is a sickness which you merrily embrace. Leftist scum like you are the problem.Actual Americans don’t give a shit about skin color.

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  2. It seems to me that the purpose of forcing others to acknowledge you as you wish to be seen; ie, in the main stream; to be regarded as “normal”; OK; you belong, is to assuage that nagging voice in the back of you head, that you really are different, an outlier. “I’m happy being different” belies the various machinations perpetuated by those who are different that illustrates the contrary. The forcing of others to accept you only on your own terms, ie in this case seeking out a baker who would not submit to your terms, more likely than not reflects underlying insecurity of one’s own being. Like a religion that can’t tolerate any deviation from the catechism. Like a pebble in one’s shoe, an irritant. Like an actor on stage, coming to life only in the footlights, craves applause as validation of their existence. In reality, not all actors can act. Not all comedians are funny. And not all people who seek mainstream validation in their differences can achieve, by bullying others, fill a void from within and what is deficient in themselves. They may not even like who they are. Why expect others to think differently.

    Liked by 1 person

    • The gay couple who are suing are using legal resources available to them via state jurisprudence, and was enacted in good faith so that LGBT minorities could get equal access to the amenities that are available straight people. One could dispute the effectiveness of these laws, indeed many have, but they’re laws, and being laws, are expected to be obeyed.

      “Bullying others” is very much what religion does, and is doing here. They won’t supply custom wedding services to gay people unless they repent and become straight and marry the opposite sex, and only then will they receive full service. If we doubt that, we could try the experiment, perhaps with actors you refer to.

      The agenda of the religious right is to reverse Obergefell, and the Republican Party are stacking the Supreme Court with their nominees to make sure this will eventually happen. Likewise with anti-discrimination laws.

      I’m not convinced the Sweet Cakes gay customers sought out the bakery as a cause célèbre with foreknowledge of refusal, but in the Colorado case, the reason the gay couple drove across town, past all the other bakers, was that they were already Jack Phillips’ loyal customers. They wanted the best cake for their wedding, and presumed he would welcome their business. Personally, I drive past any number of restaurants to get to my favourite, or the best in town and the same goes for all other businesses that I patronise. I don’t get refused because I am gay, but if I were refused service on such grounds, I would have to consider my options. Slippery Slope isn’t always a logical fallacy

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      • Derek Williams August 26, 2018 at 2:57 pm

        The gay couple who are suing are using legal resources available to them via state jurisprudence, and was enacted in good faith so that LGBT minorities could get equal access to the amenities that are available straight people. One could dispute the effectiveness of these laws, indeed many have, but they’re laws, and being laws, are expected to be obeyed.

        So you say. I say that the gay couple are misusing the legal system to force a man to carry their message. As an artist myself, I say screw you for wanting to force an artist to carry your message. I note that you have NOT answered my question above, vis:

        Would you use a lawsuit to force a young gay couple to bake a cake saying

        Good News!
        Evil Faggots Will
        Burn In Hell!

        and when they refused to bake your cake as is their First Amendment right, drive them into bankruptcy?

        Because that is assuredly what you are supporting in the Colorado case.

        The Colorado baker was happy to serve gay people. Indeed, this couple were already customers of his, thus PROVING THIS IS NOT ABOUT THEM.

        It is about them trying to force the baker to carry their message, and that is totalitarian. Freedom of speech includes freedom to NOT speak …

        w.

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        • I answered that question many times over, in all the forms in which you have asked it. This is getting tiresome. No, the young gay couple cannot be forced to write anything, so long as they refuse everybody. But if they write the message for a white person yet refuse to write it for a back person, then it’s discrimination, and the black person can sue, and vice versa.

          The ‘Christian’ bakers will custom bake a cake for a heterosexual couple but they refuse it to a gay couple. Out and out discrimination, legal in most states, but not in the two under discussion.

          Despite the fact that atheists get married, many weddings these bakeries cater for are civil marriages, and not all Christians agree with them, the wedding cake has conveniently been transmogrified now into a religious message, something I never heard of in my 65 years on the planet. The only time I looked for a “message in a cake” was sixpence in the Christmas pudding. But for argument’s sake, let’s accept that wedding cakes are a religious message. In that case, bakers can refuse black couples if it’s against their religious belief to serve them. By the same reasoning, so too can photographers, hoteliers, printers, florists and reception centres.

          What is this “message” exactly? That gay relationships are sinful? I’m calling bollocks here.

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          • Derek, I may be mentally challenged .. “I answered that question many times over” – please point out a single instance for me.

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          • Curious George. You obviously haven’t read my posts. For the umpteenth time, no-one can force you to write a message you don’t want to write, no-one can force you to put a dildo, a swastika, a Republican political slogan or a hate message on a cake, in short, no-one can force you to do anything you don’t want to do, because none if these examples involve discrimination.

            The bakers on the other hand, design wedding cakes, but only for straight customers. Would you be ok with a bakery open for trading to the general public, that designed cakes only for White customers, while refusing Black customers? If so, then you support discrimination.

            If you know the business you’re starting up is going to run afoul of anti-discrimination law then you should modify your business so it doesn’t run afoul of the anti-discrimination law. The “Christian” bakers could easily have found a way to do this, such as by outsourcing the message writing part of the transaction, or by providing a machine that allows customers to write their messages, but they took the fight to the court, and lost. The Supreme Court win was on a technicality over lack of respect for Phillips religious beliefs, not over the merits of the discrimination aspects of the case.

            Of course the bakers may still ultimately prevail, because now, Trump is installing a Republican judiciary with a track record of hostility to LGBT equal rights.

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          • Derek, you got a straight question, which can be answered by Yes or No. Instead of saying Yes or No and then explaining, you rant, substitute a different if related question of your own, and then claim that you answered the question. YOU DID NOT. You did not even bother to read subtle details of the case. I’m out.

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          • Curious George. You are mistaken. I was asked “can the Jewish baker be forced to paint a swastika on to a cake”, I answered No, he cannot. What part of “No” did you not understand?

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          • Nylo – Somehow this comment appeared as a reply in the wrong place, so I’ll pasted it here again.

            Phillips’ bakery refuses custom services to gay people on the basis of their innate sexual orientation. Otherwise, to get a wedding cake, the gay couple would have to have a straight wedding.

            Let’s leave aside the LGBT aspect for a moment and consider a black couple. There is a religious belief that black people have black skin because of the Curse of Cain. Can a Syriac Christian refuse a custom cake to a black couple because of their skin colour? There is likewise a far more widespread religious belief that miscegenation is sinful, such that couples of different race should be forbidden to marry, and for them to do so, is sinful. Just so you know, it was illegal for blacks to marry whites until 50 years ago.

            Can a baker who believes miscegentation to be sinful refuse a couple where the husband and wife are not of the same race? You can extroplate that to people of different religions marrying, forbidden in many religious cultures. Can the baker refuse a couple because it’s a Jew marrying a Catholic?

            There are over 40,000 denominations of Christianity, with conflicting beliefs on a plethora of matters, including equality of women, women’s ordination, birth control and divorce. Each of these could refuse customers whose beliefs differ from their own, and we haven’t even got started on Islam yet. According to the logic about the cakes being a sacred message, and all marriages being religious (in the eyes of Phillips), the laws of Public Accommodation are out the window and everyone has to keep shopping around till they can find a photographer, a baker, a florist and a printer who will bake cakes that comport with their particular religious beliefs.

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          • Derek,
            Phillips’ bakery refuses custom services to gay people on the basis of their innate sexual orientation.
            No he doesn’t. The fact that the couple were already clients before proves it.

            Otherwise, to get a wedding cake, the gay couple would have to have a straight wedding.
            I’m glad that you recognise that they can get exactly the same as any other customer: cakes for straight weddings, and not get the same as any other customers, cakes for same-sex weddings, regardless of who marries and who asks for the cake.

            Can a baker who believes miscegentation to be sinful refuse a couple where the husband and wife are not of the same race? You can extroplate that to people of different religions marrying, forbidden in many religious cultures. Can the baker refuse a couple because it’s a Jew marrying a Catholic?
            He should be allowed, yes. The only circumstance in which he should not be allowed such a thing is if he possessed a license for baking that comes with the obligation to bake any cake that a customer requests. But AFAIK law only forces him to offer the same products to all clients. He would not be allowed to reject giving an ordinary wedding cake that makes no mention of the particular circumstances of that wedding, like for example some wedding cake that has the same message and/or decoration as some other cake that he already sold to someone else. But as soon as they want something more personal, it can get rejected without it meaning some kind of discrimination to them as customers. It is the product that gets discriminated and he has the right to it.

            According to the logic about the cakes being a sacred message, and all marriages being religious (in the eyes of Phillips), the laws of Public Accommodation are out the window and everyone has to keep shopping around till they can find a photographer, a baker, a florist and a printer who will bake cakes that comport with their particular religious beliefs.
            Actually your scenario is quite ridiculous. If Philips’ views were the norm, I would personally become a baker and write in huge letters at my door “ALL KIND OF CAKES SOLD HERE!” and become millionaire. The gay couple will never have a problem to find someone to bake their cake (I bet they actually did that, shortly afterwards and way before this thing had the chance to be judged), because they are not alone in the world, and wherevere there is a customer (thousands in this case) you will find someone who wants to make a profit out of it. For example, lawyers suing bakers in the name of some misunderstood rights.

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          • I’d add that in the case of private aggression the aggressed has much better option at self defence. Always remind yourself that absolutely every law on the books down to jaywalking can carry a death penalty; just or otherwise.

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          • Derek, you seem incapable of understanding the points Willis is making and persist in re-asserting the same claim that he has refuted every time you reply.

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          • TDBraun At the very least, bakers, photographers, printers, florists, hotels and other businesses involved in the provision of services for weddings should have a sign outside their stores saying which disliked minorities they refuse services to, e.g. “we do not provide custom services to Blacks, Jews, LGBT, Asians, divorcees, mixed-race couples, couples of different religions. Please do not ask, as a refusal may offend.”

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          • Every business does have that sign, it reads “We Reserve the Right to Refuse Service”. You, like all leftists, refuse to accept individual liberty. You want to force whatever meme of the moment down the throats of anyone you choose. Keep doing it, please, the more you do the more Americans hate you and fight you.

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          • Spin, spin, spin babee! Perhaps you can get up to 25,000 rpm this time. And now I leave you to your twirling, got 10 tons of corn to get shelled and into pregrind. Bubye!

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        • Being libertarian and toward the anarcho-capitalist bent, My opinion is the Non Aggression Principles work whether you are holding gun or using “government” to hold the gun for you. I actually believe the former to be less hypocritical and self righteous. In any case remember that what the Nazi’s did in WW2 was perfectly legal.

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      • Derek Williams

        It seems you are grieving at the same time manifesting anger; at whom? Loss is the most common denominator for these powerful emotions. My suspicion, that little time bomb ticking in some people’s mind regarding their lack of acceptance, not finding their applause has instilled a hostility hurled in many directions; in this case, the “straight” world in general. I am not your brother’s keeper.

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        • Thanks for the psychoanalysis, but it’s needlessly complicated and I never said, not do I think you are my “brother’s keeper”. My brothers are all straight by the way.

          My agenda is for LGBT minorities to have equal rights and equal opportunity to everybody else. Since my sexual orientation has no negative bearing on any goods and services of which I avail myself, I should not be refused service. In that I am protected at law in the jurisprudence of some states, and here in the United Kingdom, where I live. Of course I am aware that people of ill-intent can find ways around these laws, but it was ever thus with all kinds of laws. We can overcome that.

          By contrast, the agenda of the Christian Right is to rescind marriage equality, and to reverse all LGBT anti-discrimination ordinances, thereby allowing them to fire, evict, disinherit and generally disenfranchise us.. A hard core wish to see homosexuality recriminalised, and there are still outspoken preachers out there calling for the death penalty.

          As for “loss”, I’ll forgive your erroneous assumption, since you don’t know me, but on a personal level, I don’t suffer any discrimination whatsoever where I live, and as a matter of fact, that has been true even from my younger days when I could have been sent to prison for loving the very same man I can now legally marry. These rights didn’t appear spontaneously, they were gained by LGBT activism and loving support from the heterosexual majority.

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          • Derek Williams

            The long struggle for equal opportunity is marked by heroes and legislative progress. What is not in the cards, others dictating what I think or believe. Forcing; ie, bullying others (me in particular) for your own acceptance as you are is also not in the cards. I don’t have to like you. I don’t have to accept that you are gay. I don’t have to believe anything in particular about the LGBT community if there were such a thing. I am obligated to meet and address your requests, within my level of expertise, predicated upon my consistent behavior towards all people who seek my goods/services. Psychoanalysis is not my forte. Assessing people on their stated word is what I do. No claim of special insight, just interpreting observations that are relevant to myself. I look negatively on statements regarding my linkage with any particular group, religion, or viewpoint as reflecting badly upon the individual who feels compelled to make such associations. You don’t know me except by my words, and I know you by your words.

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          • I have no interest whatsoever in “bullying” anyone to like me, nor accept anything about me, but I wish to be treated equitably and fairly, which I am happy to say, I always have been. Moreover, I am a member of a minority of a mere 5-10% of the population, so can be enslaved or even erased from the planet, should the majority choose to rise up against me. I am therefore in no position to bully you, nor anyone else. I rely on the spoken and printed word, a dialectic founded on fairness and common sense.

            Based on your assurance:

            I am obligated to meet and address your requests, within my level of expertise, predicated upon my consistent behavior towards all people who seek my goods/services.

            I accept that you are unlikely to wish to engage in malfeasance against me, and that you would not deny me access to services that you provide to others of a different orientation.

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          • “Since my sexual orientation has no negative bearing on any goods and services of which I avail myself, I should not be refused service.”

            Hey, G, T here. And you’re full of it. Weddings are, by and large, a religious matter. And if the baker thinks your orientation would have a negative religious effect on your wedding, it’s only reasonable to not get involved. When the cake has no religious meaning, the baker is fine with it.

            Would you expect a Jewish cook to fry bacon for you? A Hindu cook to grill a steak? The devil here is in the details. I had an Artistic friend arguing with me over “Piss Christ”, saying it was Art, and the Christians should just suck it up. “Oh?” I said. “Piss Mohammed? Piss Buddha? Piss Indian?” Suddenly she saw my point. How, I ask you, are these things different, just because a different ox is being gored?

            I don’t know what you do. But if somebody asked you to do it for a reason you do not approve of, would you be okay with them forcing you to do it, or suing you if you didn’t?

            Like

          • Religious weddings are held in churches. Civil weddings are a different matter, held in registry offices, and certainly were not religious in either of the two baker cases under dispute. The bakers involved are trying to force these secular marriages to be seen as religious.

            In answer to your question, yes, I would certainly expect a Jewish cook to fry bacon for me if he came to work for me, knowing that bacon would be on the menu as part of his job description. But I would never expect a Jewish or Muslim deli to sell me bacon, because that is not a product they ordinarily sell.

            If your religious exemption reasoning were to be adopted, then a Catholic checkout operator working in a supermarket could refuse to swipe condoms, a Muslim checkout operator could refuse to serve unveiled women, and he could refuse to swipe alcohol, pork or crustaceans.

            Here’s the thing. If your religion prevents you from doing the job you’re applying for, then apply for another job. It’s not fair to expect the owner of a supermarket to stff a separate checkout aisle for every religious belief, and it’s also unfair on customers to have to go through different aisles for all the different religions. By the way, there are over 40,000 denominations of Christianity with opposite beliefs on divorce, women’s ordination and birth control, so good luck with your religious aisles.

            No-one is telling you what to believe, or trying to prevent you from practising your religion. Your religious belief is your right to have, but keep it at home, and at church, and don’t force it on others of a different belief, or no belief. When I go to buy a cake, or bacon, or wine or beer from a supermarket, I don’t expect to have to go through a different aisle for every product. Your suggestion is unworkable.

            Like

        • Nylo – Phillips’ bakery refuses custom services to gay people on the basis of their innate sexual orientation. Otherwise, to get a wedding cake, the gay couple would have to have a straight wedding.

          Let’s leave aside the LGBT aspect for a moment and consider a black couple. There is a religious belief that black people have black skin because of the Curse of Cain. Can a Syriac Christian refuse a custom cake to a black couple because of their skin colour? There is likewise a far more widespread religious belief that miscegenation is sinful, such that couples of different race should be forbidden to marry, and for them to do so, is sinful. Just so you know, it was illegal for blacks to marry whites until 50 years ago.

          Can a baker who believes miscegentation to be sinful refuse a couple where the husband and wife are not of the same race? You can extroplate that to people of different religions marrying, forbidden in many religious cultures. Can the baker refuse a couple because it’s a Jew marrying a Catholic?

          There are over 40,000 denominations of Christianity, with conflicting beliefs on a plethora of matters, including equality of women, women’s ordination, birth control and divorce. Each of these could refuse customers whose beliefs differ from their own, and we haven’t even got started on Islam yet. According to the logic about the cakes being a sacred message, and all marriages being religious (in the eyes of Phillips), the laws of Public Accommodation are out the window and everyone has to keep shopping around till they can find a photographer, a baker, a florist and a printer who will bake cakes that comport with their particular religious beliefs.

          Like

          • Willis, can you delete this copy? Not all comments have Reply buttons and so I have to scan up the thread to find one with a Reply button. I have reposted the repsonse under Nylo’s response.
            Thank you

            Like

      • They are using the judicial system to attack anyone who refuses to accept their leftist political ideology. Lie all you want, reality will not be denied, asswipe.

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          • I don’t have to “rebut” you, leftist scumbag. You hate America, you hate individual liberty and freedom. Keep telling everyone what you “believe”, continue to let everybody know exactly what you are, just another leftist scumbag. In the end you will get exactly what you have earned.

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          • All you are offering is abuse. Do you want the last word? Is that it? If you keep on replying like this, then I’ll happily let you have the last word, since your words so far have been devoid of reason and your last word is the same as the first.

            Like

  3. I applaud your courage to make such a direct and possibly upsetting appeal to your friends and relatives.

    But, here’s the thought that creeps into my head as a result. If you argue that someone with a business should not be forced to sell their wares to someone who’s lifestyle they disapprove, on what basis would you be able to say a businessperson should be forced to sell their wares to anyone for whatever reason. So here it comes: a black person goes into a lunch counter…..

    The rationale that the baker had deeply held religious views can’t be the reason, otherwise that premise could be challenged in court…and where’s the precedent to say who has deeply versus otherwise held religious views.

    I’m not taking sides on this issue nor challenging your specific argument. I’m simply thinking this whole issue through and know you’ll have some thoughtful considerations.

    To round out my point just a little, government services can not discriminate based on criteria irrelevant to the provision of its services. What private citizens are allowed to do/ not do does not apply to government and vice versatile.

    Just thinking…

    Liked by 1 person

    • JP, I’ll say to you want I said to Derek. The issue is not the CUSTOMER. The issue is the MESSAGE. To repeat what I said above:

      Would you use a lawsuit to force a young gay couple to bake a cake saying

      Good News!
      Evil Faggots Will
      Burn In Hell!

      and when they refused to bake your cake, drive them into bankruptcy?

      I’m a cartoonist. I will NOT let anyone tell me what I have to draw or what I can’t draw. It is an issue of freedom of speech, it has nothing to do with race, religion or sex.

      w.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Again I say to you, that it would be impossible to bring your absurd lawsuit against the gay couple, because they could rightfully refuse the message, and in doing so would not be discriminating against you.

        Like

      • Got it, but Derek doesn’t. He refuses to admit it’s possible to decouple the message from his he persons requesting the message.

        Derek, if the baker would refuse to write “the message” (and I will admit I don’t know what “the message” said, and it does matter) for a straight couple—i.e., for anyone requesting that message) would you agree the baker could do that? After all, that’s not discriminating against the person making the request, but rather refusing to do something specific.

        As for your suggestion about the baker outsourcing the writing or having it done mechanically, that would still be forcing the baker to essentially endorse the writing.

        However, the gay couple COULD HAVE bought the undecorated cake and then have had the writing done by someone else or have done it themselves. But they didn’t, and for a reason I believe intentionally disrespectful of the baker’s religious beliefs. You’re really OK with that? Think about that.

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  4. Willis – note that faggots are a sort of sausage in the northern UK, and so they could be barbecued if the English weather allowed. There’s also a town in Finland and another in the States called Hell. As such a lawyer could argue that the message was not defamatory, just a description of a bad cook with a taste for offal who lives in an oddly-named town.

    What is offensive language is purely subjective. One reason why the place you go to defecate has frequently changed its name as the previous euphemism becomes too common. Thomas Crapper made a very good water-closet, so people “went to the crapper”. Or the toilet, the loo, the public convenience….

    The N-word that would get us sacked for mentioning can however be used by Black comedians.

    One thing today is that often people don’t take the time to know someone, but quickly put them into pigeonholes and treat them as mutually culpable for any problem caused by anyone else in the same pigeonhole. I’m thus blamed for persecuting the Blacks and am guilty of slavery, and may be treated as guilty by association of anything Old White Europeans (or English, British… choose your pigeonhole) have done in the past or are doing now. Battle lines drawn. I don’t blame Ahmed for what Isis do in another country (or even in France). Not his fault for having the same religion. I know however that if I was in the wrong part of Syria I’d be a target.

    That’s why terrorists feel justified in random bombings of people they’ve never met and who never did them any personal harm. They’re attacking symbols, not people. Count the number of dead, and don’t worry if they were babes in arms, saints or sinners.

    Lawfare against devout Christian bakers is again looking for a symbol to attack. Bound to be a reaction against it, too. In the past, popes weren’t above smiting the foe mightily. People under attack lose any semblance of turning the other cheek and find ways to attack back.

    Best to look at whether the risks are worth it. If you’re living in the right location for you, then there will be people (yes, gay bakers exist) who will happily serve you. If you can’t find,one, then it must be obvious you’re living in the wrong place and could have a much better experience living somewhere else. No matter how much you complain, you can’t change what people believe by having laws against those thoughts.

    Of course, if you like living dangerously and the thrill of not knowing if you’ll get home alive, be the lone outed gay in a fundamentalist town. That after all used to be the reality, and though there may have been others around who kept it very secret.

    Society changes slowly. You’ve got one life, so if your home environment doesn’t accept you, go somewhere where you are accepted. It’s not as if there isn’t a choice these days. If you choose a hard place, it will be hard. That’s really about it.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Simon: War is war, and people get killed in wars, as anyone who has studied the plight of the suffragettes will readily understand. Yes, “society changes slowly”, but not unless there is a motivation to change. Would women today have the vote had women not put themselves in harm’s way over a century ago? I hardly think so. Would LGBT rights have got on to the public agenda without the likes of Stonewall?

      LGBT youth whose religious families don’t accept them often don’t choose to leave their homes, they’re kicked out, and turn to drugs and street prostitution. According to a study by the National Center on Family Homelessness, one in 30 kids (nearly 2.5 million children) of K-12 school age are now homeless in the US:
      http://time.com/3588844/child-homeless-study/

      Of them, 40% are LGBT, according to a 2012 study conducted by the Williams Institute at UCLA Law:
      https://williamsinstitute.law.ucla.edu/wp-content/uploads/Durso-Gates-LGBT-Homeless-Youth-Survey-July-2012.pdf

      Considering LGBT youth constitute a mere 7% of the sample population, having 40% homeless gay kids forced by circumstances to deal in drugs and street prostitution is pretty awful, don’t you think? That’s a million kids, who could have had futures.

      Next we can look at the suicide ideation rates for LGBT homeless kids:
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homelessness_among_LGBT_youth_in_the_United_States

      According to this article, LGBT kids who are rejected by their families are more than 8 times more likely to take their own lives compared to 3x for their heterosexual peers. The reason for this is that LGBT kids don’t always have access to the four pillars of support that straight kids usually have: home and family, peer group, school and church. In a religious situation, every one of these doors can, and regularly does, slam in the face of an LGBT kid.

      The gay cake saga? Well that’s just more of the same.

      Like

      • Derek Williams

        The exit from home of LGBT children is rarely amicable. Rather, hurtful language is hurled by both parent (s) and child such that there has been the: “crossing of the Rubicon”. There is no where to go when bridges have been burned. Choices by both parties becomes the new reality. Linkages with others with a similar situation makes such separation less traumatic, although, such connections does not result in restitution of familial bonds. LGBT runaway children become targets to those in the LGBT community preying on young boys/girls vulnerabilities. Indeed, when the child is the most fragile is when the predator seizes the opportunity. Story telling by those temporarily in shelters speak of a horror perpetrated by people who are most like themselves and therefore to be believed, only to be betrayed. The straight community, again whatever that may be, hardly regularly preys upon defenseless children.

        Like

        • How about the parents don’t kick out their LGBT kids in the first place? You don’t cite any evidence to support your claim that the “LGBT Community preys on young boys/girls vulnerabilities”. Claims without evidence can be dismissed without evidence.

          Like

          • Derek Williams

            Kids get kicked out of their parents homes mostly for behavioral issues. The word that keeps coming up is: incorrigible.

            To learn about the LGBT community preying on kids, well, you have a cornucopia of resources:
            juvenile justice system including “juvie” or juvenile detention, family court, district court, homeless shelters, and of course the emergency departments of hospitals. The latest buzzword is: trafficking. Social service agencies in most communities already have a caseload of trafficked children and…there you will find LGBT children and their stories. With some patients and effort, you too will eventually hear their tale of woe while they entered the world of prostitution, facilitated by “someone I trusted.” Learning more before speaking would be helpful, otherwise, you do a disservice to the larger LGBT community.

            Like

          • Your list doesn’t include links to verifiable sources. By that I mean government or quasi-government data and statistics that have been corroborated, or academic-type citations that have been peer reviewed by recognised authorities in their field.

            Any abuse that is occurring anywhere is to be abhorred, and of course must be dealt with, but if LGBT kids weren’t kicked out of home by their abusive parents, then the consequent abusive situations in which they find themselves would not be occurring in the first place. Given that the age of LGBT evictees is as low as 11 years, and suicides start from that age, the parental evictions of such juveniles constitute child neglect, and they would be charged with the same, were they to be reported to Child Protection. Authorities are not in the least convinced by parental representations that their child is “possessed by gay demons”.

            I can’t comment with authority on the US situation, but I did work in this field in Australia, dealing with significant abuse of LGBT youngsters, sometimes by their parents and also by their school peers. We occasionally provided pro bono legal services where severely bullied kids sued their schools for breach of duty of care, winning 6 figure sums in every case, and in every case, I’m sorry to say, it was a religious school that was successfully prosecuted. If you doubt that abuse can happen in a religious school, take a look at the crisis of confidence over the Catholic Church’s handling of child assault by its clergy.

            A gay kid isn’t “incorrigible” merely for not being heterosexual, and that is what many of the religiously motivated parents are trying to force on their kids. They regard being gay as “disobedience”. Sometimes LGBT children are sent to religious camps for “Gay Conversion Therapy”, one of the most cruel and destructive frauds ever visited upon vulnerable children.

            You said earlier that “the straight community” aren’t known for abusing and exploiting children, but you couldn’t be more wrong. These kids all have heterosexual parents, and are fleeing abuse in their homes, and oftentimes their schools as well. If you don’t have access to this information, I’ll happily compile the links for you.

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          • Derek Williams you have clearly seen egregious behavior against people of LGBT. In all likelihood you have also been involved in dangerous situations involving helping individuals of LGBT. You are also not from the States. As such I would not expect that you will ever get the subtle differences of how US citizens view within our bill or rites. Your life’s experiences seem to prevent you from understanding the differences between US freedom of speech, US freedom of religion and US equal under the law (discrimination-still evolving)

            You insist on denying one of the three in your arguments thereby wiping out constitutional rites in the eyes of your US detractors. Your arguments seem very septic in nature on this side of the pond. The vehement responses you are triggering are the results of a backlash against the assault on US cultural life and the US constitution that has nothing to do with you or your LGBT community.

            Willis’s comments convey part and parcel that backlash I speak of with his comments of “Why push this way when the tide is in your favor. The result here is another conservative supreme court pick. The result is damage to your world cause through your lack of understanding the nature of how rites are viewed by high percentage of US voters. In the states you will get more flies with honey than you will with vinegar.

            Liked by 1 person

  5. Leftist ideologues have latched onto these meme, they care no more for the lives of anyone, at all, as long as they can use them to advance their anti-American, anti-human leftist ideology. It is all about politics, nothing more.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Please define what you mean by “leftist”, and be specific about what you claim is “anti-American, anti-human”, otherwise I have no idea what you’re talking about. Your abuse isn’t helping civil discourse.

      Like

  6. I agree, how many people would agree that an author should be required to write a book that they oppose, or a painter paint a picture that they oppose.

    As far as I’m concerned, the line is when you are asking for creativity.

    Asking a print shop to print anything that you bring in is reasonable, no creativity there.

    buying anything that a baker has already made (or even ordering larger quantities of such goods), no problem, no creativity there.

    Asking for a plain white 3-tier cake, again no problem.

    Ask for a custom cake, now there is a problem

    And as a very practical matter, do you really want someone doing creative work for you who hates being forced to do it? How good a job do you think they are really going to do? How can you prove that they didn’t work as well on your job as on other jobs because they hate you as opposed to just didn’t feel good that day or other very legitimate reasons that one creative job may not come out as well as another creative job.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Of course, no-one should be forced to write something with which they disagree. But here’s the thing: if a white man comes up to you and asks you to write this thing with which you disagree, and you say yes and write it for him, then you cannot reasonably refuse it to a black man on the grounds of his race, and if you do, it is discrimination.

      Same applies to requests for a Jewish baker to put a swastika on a wedding cake. He can legitimately refuse, because he doesn’t do that for ANYBODY, Jew, Gentile, Gay, Straight, Male, Female, Tall or Short. But if he were to put a swastika on a cake for a white customer but then refuse the exact same product for a black customer, because he was black, then again, that would be discrimination.

      That is what is at issue with the wedding cake. The only difference between the gay couple and the straight couple is their gender and their sexual orientation. This baker is agreeing to write the message (i.e. custom build the cake as Phillips sees it) for a straight couple but is refusing the identical message (the cake) to a gay couple. That is straightforward discrimination. He can say his cake is a sacred object and other nonsense, but it is not. I’ll bet his menu doesn’t say “sacred cakes”. The cake isn’t even for the actual marriage ceremony. It is to be used for the after party of a civil marriage.

      Religious marriages can be deemed ‘Holy Matrimony’ if it helps the religious among us to bolster their feeling of superiority over gay people, but they’re held in churches. Civil Marriages are a matter between the participants and the government, not between them and God. Leave God to the churches, in what ever form they worship him. Meanwhile, in a secular business open to the public, patrons have the reasonable expectation that they should be served the same products and services as anyone else, regardless of their gender, race or sexual orientation.

      No-one is forcing the baker to build this cake, but if he builds it for a white couple, then he can’t refuse it to a black couple on the grounds of their race, based on religious belief or otherwise. If he doesn’t want to write messages on the cake, he can outsource this, and it’s notable that neither baker under discussion made any effort to accommodate their customers. They wanted to win the right to refuse disliked minorities, and don’t think for a moment that it will end with gays.

      I take your point about buying a product from someone who despises what you are, and yes, for a while there will be civil disobedience, such as forcing blacks and LGBT people to wait longer in queues, maybe spitting, urinating or defecating in their cake, and goodness knows what else. But as has already been observed, change is generational, and there must surely come a point when the religious among us get bored with mistreating gay people and find another minority to pick on.

      Like

      • Derek Williams August 26, 2018 at 6:24 pm

        Of course, no-one should be forced to write something with which they disagree. But here’s the thing: if a white man comes up to you and asks you to write this thing with which you disagree, and you say yes and write it for him, then you cannot reasonably refuse it to a black man on the grounds of his race, and if you do, it is discrimination.

        Same applies to requests for a Jewish baker to put a swastika on a wedding cake. He can legitimately refuse, because he doesn’t do that for ANYBODY, Jew, Gentile, Gay, Straight, Male, Female, Tall or Short. But if he were to put a swastika on a cake for a white customer but then refuse the exact same product for a black customer, because he was black, then again, that would be discrimination.

        OK, now I see your point. You can’t refuse to make what you call “the exact same product”.

        So if I agree to make a gay wedding cake for a straight couple, I have to agree to make the exact same gay wedding cake for a gay couple who requests it.

        Got it.

        I cannot disagree with that. That would be illegal discrimination.

        However, I greatly doubt that even on this most curious planet, that has ever actually ever occurred.

        On the other hand, the mere fact that I’ve painted a custom picture on commission doesn’t mean I have to accept every picture commission someone brings to me.

        The mere fact that I’ve made a custom sign for one person doesn’t mean I have to make a sign I disagree with for someone else.

        And the mere fact that I’ve made a custom wedding cake to order doesn’t mean I have to fulfill every wedding cake order.

        I say again … you are not advancing the cause of gay equality by suing Christian bakers into bankruptcy. Quite the opposite. You are setting your cause back by decades. People don’t easily forget such petty vindictiveness …

        FIND ANOTHER FARKING BAKER! How hard can it be? If it’s too tough for you, here’s some assistance:

        Wedding cake – Canvas Factory
        http://www.canvasfactory.com/design-your-dream-wedding-cake/
        Design your dream wedding cake. Start Again … How many people are attending your wedding party? … Select your number of polystyrene / dummy cake tiers.

        Patisserie Valerie | Design and create your perfect cake online
        https://www.patisserie-valerie.co.uk/blog…/Design-and-create-your-perfect-cake-onlin…
        Design and create your perfect cake online. Create a Cake with Patisserie Valerie Have you tried our new interactive create-a-cake tool yet? It’s your chance to …

        Design Your Own Wedding Cake With New Online Tool – Bride
        http://www.bridemagazine.co.uk/…/design-your-own-wedding-cake-with-new-online-tool
        Nov 23, 2015 – The wedding cake of your dreams could be designed at the click of a button it seems, as the Canvas Factory has launched an online cake …

        Design my own wedding cake online! | Brides
        https://www.brides.com/…/design-my-own-wedding-cake-online-create-a-cake-tool-to…
        Nov 30, 2010 – Use our online tool to create your own wedding cake design. Choose from different colors, decorations, accents and toppers to design your …

        Best regards,

        w.

        Liked by 2 people

      • Dereck,
        if a white man comes up to you and asks you to write this thing with which you disagree, and you say yes and write it for him, then you cannot reasonably refuse it to a black man on the grounds of his race, and if you do, it is discrimination

        Again, please remind to me, when did the baker NOT refuse to write the gays’ message for a non-gay customer? I can’t remember. If he had NOT refused such a message for a non-gay customer, then you would have a point. So when did it happen? Please, please, please… let me know.

        Like

      • Actually I can find an easy example of this NOT happening. It is proven (appears in the sentence) that Craig’s mother (who is heterosexual) also asked for the wedding cake the following day. And Philip would not do it for her. So there you have it: Philip rejects creating such same-sex wedding cakes regardless of the sexual orientation of the person who asks for them.

        Like

        • Nylo August 29, 2018 at 1:04 am

          Actually I can find an easy example of this NOT happening. It is proven (appears in the sentence) that Craig’s mother (who is heterosexual) also asked for the wedding cake the following day. And Philip would not do it for her. So there you have it: Philip rejects creating such same-sex wedding cakes regardless of the sexual orientation of the person who asks for them.

          Hilarious. So all this time the evidence was there that Derek kept asking for. He won’t bake that cake for a heterosexual either … sorry, Derek, but your fantasy ship just went aground on a solid reef of facts …

          w.

          Like

  7. Derek mentioned he lives in the UK, so I was trying to find out what the gay discrimination laws are in the UK.
    It looks like all discrimination in providing goods and services is banned, public and private.
    And the EU charter may say the same.

    Are there no cake baker cases in the UK? Cases that test the discrimination laws relative the the religious freedom and free speech laws? I don’t know about religious freedom in the UK, but I hear the free speech protections are not doing so well.

    However, gay rights are on a roll. Gays have a long and interesting history in the UK. Who knew, besides the nudge nudge wink wink about the residential boys schools.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timeline_of_LGBT_history_in_the_United_Kingdom

    Like

    • YMMV: “Derek mentioned he lives in the UK, so I was trying to find out what the gay discrimination laws are in the UK.”

      Ohhhh… That may explain the communication difficulties. This discussion is between cousins separated by a common language. And the two legal systems have their differences as well.

      Liked by 1 person

      • YMMV: “Derek mentioned he lives in the UK, so I was trying to find out what the gay discrimination laws are in the UK.”

        Ah, that would explain why he said it would be OK to refuse to put a message on a cake because the message was “racist”. In the UK, there are laws against what is falsely called “hate speech”. For example, a girl got indicted in the UK for tweeting a few lyrics of some rap song that had been sung at Glastonbury the week before … because it contained the “N-Word” it was deemed to be “racist” for her to tweet it. But not for the rapper to sing it … but I digress.

        The whole idea of “hate speech” is one of those infinitely elastic terms that allow the authorities to arrest someone for saying, well, just about anything. It’s a shame that the UK didn’t learn from their mistakes as the US did. We have Freedom of Speech, including whatever might be construed as “hate speech”, guaranteed by the Constitution.

        For further discussion of this “hate speech” issue, see my posts entitled Forbidden Words, Orthodox Hate Speech, Bright Line Distinctions, The UN Condemns Freedom Of Speech, and Trademarked Hate Speech.

        Regards to all,

        w.

        Liked by 2 people

  8. Willis, I understand your distress.

    I don’t have your story-telling genius, but nevertheless, please let me tell you a story…

    I had a friend whom I met in 1947, when I was 22 months old, so apart from family, he was my oldest friend. The last time I saw him was early in 2004, when we drank ourselves almost senseless in a small bar in Kaitaia, New Zealand. His skin was covered in Karposi’s sarcoma lesions, and his breathing was laboured.
    But his humour, wisdom and love of life were undiminished, and we laughed as we reminisced about our childhood, our adolescence, the influence of our teachers, our marriages and children. And our changes.

    Richard was a man for all seasons – a farmer, farrier, builder, craftsman, cook, knitter, sewer, pianist, teacher and leader. And he was bisexual. In his later years, he became exclusively homosexual. To his real friends, that made no matter – even as children we had always instinctively known he was different. My own wife and children adored him.

    He died in March, 2004, of AIDS complications. When he openly declared his sexuality, his own sister publicly and cruelly denounced him – real hate speech. But here’s the thing – he showed her more love, understanding and forgiveness than the attention-seeking LGBT crowd are prepared to show people like the baker couple in your story.

    I travelled to Kaitaia for his funeral, just one of the two thousand from Kaitaia and around the world who attended. I was sad to see that his sister didn’t attend – sad for her emptiness and sad for his very old parents, who regretted their daughter’s attitude. But I remembered that Richard had embraced the slings and arrows of fortune as wholeheartedly as he embraced its gifts.

    The sun was shining the day of the funeral. Maori people prefer it to rain, as their tradition is that if Ranginui the Sky Father weeps, it is an omen that the departed had great mana (prestige, significance, strength). I wrote this haiku and shared it with Wiremu, a contemporary of Richard and me:

    Rangi, do not weep
    On Richard’s casket. Our own
    Hot tears will suffice.

    Wiremu smied and nodded his understanding – as Richard would have done. I hope your gay friends and relatives can learn to do the same.

    Liked by 2 people

    • “Learn to do the same” equates to LGBT accepting that we’re second class citizens, wo will never be deserving of equal citizenship no matter what we do, because of one thing: we are not attracted to the people you expect us to be attracted to. That is the most ridiculous reason I can think of for looking down on a minority who are no threat to you whatsoever. No matter how many services we are refused, how many threats are made, it won’t turn gays onto women or lesbians on to men. That’s not how Nature works. Most men desire women naturally, and by definition they are heterosexual. They don’t have to be threatened or taught the Bible or otherwise punished to get a hard-on for a female. Why would a heterosexual woman want to be married to a gay man who has no sexual desire for her beautiful body, nor an ounce of romantic attraction to her radiant personality, when she could have for herself a heterosexual man who is head over heels in love with her?

      Your story, moving and painstakingly retold as it is, shows the prejudice still facing LGBT minorities in communities who are taught to hate (and you’ve got to be carefully taught) what LGBT people are, even as they sanctimonioulsy declare they “love the sinner, hate the sin”.

      Phillips believes gay men should not be getting married to other gay men, and by simple extrapolation, that we should instead marry a female. He believes you can pray away the gay. This is delusion at the highest level and it is being kowtowed to by the justice system at the highest level.

      When I go into a commercial store on the High Street, the last thing I expect to be facing is religious evangelism denying me goods and services I am willing to pay for because I don’t love the right human for the provider. He is placing himself in authority over me, in the vain hope that by denying me goods and services, I will hear the Lord and decide to be attracted to females. Why is religion allowed to take supremacy over the marketplace? But if it is, why does it have to be the baker’s religion?

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      • Derek Williams August 27, 2018 at 5:47 am

        “Learn to do the same” equates to LGBT accepting that we’re second class citizens, wo will never be deserving of equal citizenship no matter what we do, because of one thing: we are not attracted to the people you expect us to be attracted to.

        ABSOLUTELY NOT! Have you not read a single word I’ve written?

        IT’S NOT ABOUT THE CUSTOMER! IT IS ABOUT THE MESSAGE! It has nothing to do with citizens, first or second class. It’s not about religion, it’s not about race, and most assuredly, it’s not about you.

        It is about freedom of speech and my right to NOT carry your message!

        Sheesh … why is this so hard for you to grasp? You keep insisting that you are a victim in this. Nothing could be further from the truth. John, I, and others have great support and compassion for gay people, and you are doing your best to destroy that support and compassion.

        But regardless, we will not be forced into promoting your ideas. Not gonna happen. It’s about the message. It’s not about you.

        w.

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        • Willis – exactly what IS “the message”? And how can you say that being gay is an “idea I am trying to promote”? What am I promoting here by ordering a cake? Are heterosexuals promoting an idea when they ordering a wedding cake?

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          • Derek Williams August 27, 2018 at 3:31 pm

            Willis – exactly what IS “the message”?

            Thanks, Derek. What is the message of what? Sorry, not clear.

            And how can you say that being gay is an “idea I am trying to promote”?

            Near as I can tell, I didn’t say that. In fact, I didn’t use the word “promote” anywhere in either the head post or the comments. This is why I ask people just above the Comments field to QUOTE THE EXACT WORDS YOU ARE DISCUSSING.

            What am I promoting here by ordering a cake?

            I have no idea. Depends on what you want the cake to say, either literally or symbolically. I can’t answer for an imaginary cake … but I think you knew that. You could put any message on it—a message of love, a message of patriotism, a humorous message, a Polish flag, a statue of Liberty, WTF do I know?

            Are heterosexuals promoting an idea when they ordering a wedding cake?

            Same answer. Depends on the cake.

            If you don’t think cakes carry a very individual message, Google “wedding cakes dildo” and click on the “Image” tab … but only if you have enough eyebleach. One look at that page and you’ll realize that it is about the MESSAGE, and not about race, religion, sex etc., or about you …

            Best regards,

            w.

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      • Eh? What part of my comments led you to assume I regard LGBT people as second-class, that I have been “taught to hate”, or that I judge Richard or any lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender person to be a sinner?

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        • John Johnston I was referring to when your friend’s sister denounced him (the “taught to hate” referred to that), he showed her love and forgiveness. Noble indeed, but at some point people have to stand up for themselves. If someone refuses you service because of your sexual orientation, they are treating you as a second class citizen. Were you not a second-class citizen, you would receive first-class service, like heterosexual customers.

          Try replacing “LGBT” with Black, and “Heterosexual” with White, and then re-read everything in this thread. Maybe that will make it clearer. Refusing to bake a wedding cake for a black couple – how does that fly?

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  9. Some subjects take a lot of digging to find the heart of the matter. I think Willis got to it with:

    “So if I agree to make a gay wedding cake for a straight couple, I have to agree to make the exact same gay wedding cake for a gay couple who requests it.

    Got it.

    I cannot disagree with that. That would be illegal discrimination.”

    Derek still doesn’t get it that it’s the message that is important here, and that discrimination on the message is AFAIK still allowed in the UK as well. In fact, with the “hate speech” rules that have come in all over Europe, everyone has to be far more careful about what they say and what they put on social media. There’s Willis’ example of the girl who tweeted what she’d heard a rapper say. I suspect the girl was seen as white, and if she was identified as black she’d have been let off. Then again, in the UK the police didn’t stop the grooming of young white girls for sex in Rotherham and Oxford by Asians because they didn’t want to be seen as racist. Me, think the law should be blind to colour, culture, religion etc. – one law for all. Laws intended to fix a perceived problem can cause other worse problems.

    One of those unintended consequences is the quota system. Maybe there will be a law that a certain percentage of employees in a company must be gay. It’s a logical progression. Personally, I think you should employ the best people to do the job, and not worry about gender, ethnicity, sexual preferences or any of the ways people are seen to be *different*.

    One of the sad things is that people want to move to the UK because it has a tradition of tolerance going back a very long time. Nor perfect, of course, but better in general. If they bring with them their own intolerances, then the traditions get diluted. There are the beginnings of “no-go” areas, where Derek would be also unwise to go. Still, as with the USA there are places that are gay-friendly and others that aren’t, and there are places where a white face will be unwelcome and others where a black face is unwelcome. The borders of those areas will change over time.

    One conundrum that I can’t solve is that logically a gay will be a genetic dead-end. The percentage of people who are gay however seems to be pretty constant, even in places like Pakistan and Saudi Arabia where persecution is severe and often fatal. That implies that there is survival value in having gays around. Something to ponder.

    Liked by 1 person

    • H.R. The “message” is the cake, according to Phillips. He doesn’t want his brand name on a same-sex wedding, apparently, yet if they couple bought an off-the-shelf cake, it would still have his name on it.

      As regards why there are gay people in the world, no-one knows, but there’s not an ounce of choice in whom you’re attracted to. There are a variety of possible evolutionary reasons why the gay gene (or whatever causes people to be gay) persists:
      1. Population control, in a world whose population is already well over the 2.6 billion maximum sustainable.
      2. Surplus labour derived from those not ordinarily preoccupied with child rearing
      3. Spare gene pool in the event of catastrophic decline in population – gays can still procreate if needs must
      4. Surplus population able to look after kids abandoned or abused by their heterosexual parents

      There are quite a few articles on the evolutionary imperative for homosexuality, and how having gay people paradoxically contributes to the dominance of humans on the planet:

      1. http://chronicle.com/article/The-Evolutionary-Mystery-of/135762
      2. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-26089486
      3. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ohFOHvcTC6I

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      • YMMV There have been a few celebrated cases here, for example hotels refusing to rent a room to a gay couple on their honeymoon. All have lost in the court battles that followed, licked their wounds and moved on. There has however been a similar cake case in Ireland, in which the court likewise found against the bakers, but that I believe is still under appeal.

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    • Simon: “One conundrum that I can’t solve is that logically a gay will be a genetic dead-end. The percentage of people who are gay however seems to be pretty constant, even in places like Pakistan and Saudi Arabia where persecution is severe and often fatal. That implies that there is survival value in having gays around. Something to ponder.”

      No, it doesn’t necessarily imply that. Evolution is not rational. Sometimes there is a survival reason, sometimes there is some other reason, sometimes there is no reason.

      The percentage does seem pretty constant and it goes all the way back in history. Interesting. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homosexuality#History
      Some cultures accept, some ignore, some punish.

      The search for causes of gayness is also interesting. Nobody has found a gene for it. Environmental causes look unlikely judging by the statistics. That leaves the influences of hormones in the womb, testosterone or other. We can believe that it is not a choice for gays. Where do ‘bi’s fit in?
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gay,_Straight,_and_the_Reason_Why
      https://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2016/04/gay-brothers/480117/

      Liked by 1 person

      • YMMV – your answers here have been thoughtful and thought-provoking. Thankyou. I’d also seen that the percentage of homosexuals seems to be around constant, and that we also see that in other animals, too. I figure that where things survive, there must be some survival value even if I can’t see it, so I threw the question out to see if anyone could provide a better answer. Not that the answer really matters, since it will make no difference to the population, but maybe having a logical reason could improve some peoples’ lives. I’ll note that some professions (mainly arts) seem to have a higher proportion of gays so it may be connected with artistic creativity. There may therefore be a connection in exploring the unusual and in doing the things that aren’t normally done.

        Liked by 1 person

  10. If your religious exemption reasoning were to be adopted, then a Catholic checkout operator working in a supermarket could refuse to swipe condoms, a Muslim checkout operator could refuse to serve unveiled women, and he could refuse to swipe alcohol, pork or crustaceans. – Derek Williams

    I don’t think your analogy is accurate. While a checkout operator does not have the right to refuse a specific service based on religion, their is a conflict is with the store owner, not the customer. Anti-discrimination laws pertaining to accommodation ONLY pertains to the customer. The store owner has the right to not carry a particular product or service.

    Try ordering a ham sandwich at a Jewish delicatessen or a pork chop at a Somalian restaurant. Ain’t gonna happen and no one suggests that it is because of anti-gentile or anti-Christian sentiment.

    It is important to note that Jack Phillips DID NOT refuse to provide service. He offered any cake in the shop to the couple. What he denied was custom service based on his religious beliefs. He also refused to provide the same custom service to Halloween themed cakes – which demonstrated religious consistency, not anti-gay bias.

    It was a very poor test case and for the gay community, a bridge too far.

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    • Accurate? Derek doesn’t even grasp what the subject is and keeps trying to obfuscate things by bringing up examples that have nothing to do with it. The bakers did not refuse service only his creative endeavors to create something that he didn’t believe in. He can’t seem to grasp the difference. If a store didn’t stock Halal meat could a Muslim then sue for discrimination? How about if a bookstore didn’t carry gay porn but stocked other types? I guess Derek would say they could. Arguing with him isn’t going to open his mind since he can’t even understand the issue rationally.

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      • We had a problem in Minneapolis, home to tens of thousands of Somalian immigrants, with cab drivers refusing to pick up people who were traveling with dogs, especially service animals. Being in the presence of dogs did not violate their religion, but it did offend their cultural sensibilities.

        So here were the alternatives:
        1) Mandate that cab drives pick up anyone with a dog or lose their livelihood.
        2) Outlaw dogs in cabs.
        3) Tell the drivers that they are in America now and should adapt to American customs.
        4) Acknowledge there is a clash of cultures and address the problem by having dispatch inquire as to whether a dog would be riding with the fare and match that call to a driver who has no problem with it.

        Why do 1, 2 or 3, when 4 works so well?

        I appreciate what people like Derek are going through, especially if they are older and experienced a time when gay people faced violence and overt discrimination. It is incumbent upon us not to lose sight of that and though we may not agree with the case against Jack Phillips, we should acknowledge that there is a history of hard feelings.

        On the other hand, people like Derek must come to realize that people like Jack Phillips are now a small minority and should be treated as such – by protecting them from discrimination. Note that the couple that charged Jack with discrimination sought him out.

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        • Almost Iowa – Taking dogs in cabs is a very good analogy. When someone applies for a job as a cab driver, they must know that a dog is likely to enter their cab. If their religion prevents them from agreeing to this, then find another job Same goes for working in a supermarket where alcohol, pork, and contraceptives are sold. If someone is not prepared to swipe these through the checkout, then apply for another job that doesn’t violate your religious belief.

          Kim Davis knew when she applied for her job as Kentucky Town Clerk that she would soon be required to sign marriage certificates for same-sex couples. Then she promptly refused to do her job, citing religious belief.

          Halal and Kosher bakeries stock only Halal and Kosher products, yet they serve ALL member of the public, not just Muslims and Jews.

          When Sweet Cakes and Masterpiece bakeries set up business, they knew that one day, two sinners would walk into their shop, in the form of a same-sex couple. And they refused their commission on religious grounds.

          Religious belief is a choice, being black, gay or female isn’t. If they can’t write the message themselves, they can outsource that job. But if your religious belief prevents you from serving the general public, start another business that doesn’t violate your religious belief!

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          • > Kim Davis knew when she applied for her job as Kentucky Town Clerk that she would soon be required to sign marriage certificates for same-sex couples. Then she promptly refused to do her job, citing religious belief.

            actually, she didn’t. same-sex marriage was illegal at the time in that state

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          • When someone applies for a job as a cab driver, they must know that a dog is likely to enter their cab. If their religion prevents them from agreeing to this, then find another job

            The prohibition on dogs is a cultural, not a religious taboo. It is one thing to tell a few cabbies that they have to transport dogs, it is quite another to offend the sensibilities of 100,000 Somalian immigrants. If we are going to go down the road of multiculturalism, we damned well need to fully appreciate what it is. What it is not, is colorful clothes and exotic accents.

            Kim Davis knew when she applied for her job as Kentucky Town Clerk that she would soon be required to sign marriage certificates for same-sex couples. Then she promptly refused to do her job, citing religious belief.

            Hmmmmmmm, does this same logic apply to Sanctuary Cities? Either we follow the law or we do not follow the law. If we get to pick and choose then we get to pick and choose.

            When Sweet Cakes and Masterpiece bakeries set up business, they knew that one day, two sinners would walk into their shop, in the form of a same-sex couple. And they refused their commission on religious grounds.

            But here is the distinction. If a gay couple asked Jack Phillips to make a birthday cake with a neutral theme and he refused to serve them, then discrimination would have been clear-cut, but that is not what happened. Jack Philips did not refuse to serve the couple, he refused to produce a cake with a theme he found offensive.

            Let’s take a hypothetical. What if Jack Phillips was Irish and refused on cultural and historic grounds to use orange frosting on a Saint Patrick Day cake, would that be illegal discrimination or a business decision?

            At least in my mind and perhaps SCOTUS, the Jack Phillips case defines the border of religious and cultural expression and the gay community, having tested that border, is simply going to have to live with it and learn to work around it.

            Again, given the history of discrimination I recognize the sensitivity of the issue, but there is a difference between refusing to serve someone and refusing to serve something. The law protects people, not ideas.

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          • Almost Iowa – Under laws of Public Accommodation, you can refuse to write any message you don’t like, but not on the grounds of the race, the gender or the sexual orientation of the customer, i.e you can’t refuse to provide a service because somebody is black, when you would provide the same service for a white man.

            Because Phillips’s shop is not a church or a private club, he cannot claim a religious exemption. If his religious belief prevents him from serving certain members of the public because of their race, their gender or their sexual orientation, then he must find a workaround to avoid running foul of the anti-discrimination laws of Colorado. Workarounds might include outsourcing the problematic work, or ordering a subordinate to carry out the task, or providing a faciility for customers to decorate the cake themselves, or simply not offering the bespoke service, and doing as he said he is already doing, prebake the cakes and sell them off the shelf. Choosing to go into bankruptcy is unnecessary.

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          • and no we are right back to the fact that he would refuse to write a message celebrating Gay Marriage for anyone, no matter the race,gender,or sexual orientation of the person asking.

            So again,it’s the message, not anything about the person asking.

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          • David Lang – It is discirmination if he refuses it on the grounds of the sexual orientation of the customer. According to Phillips, the cake itself is the message, and he is refusing it because they are gay.

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          • Almost Iowa – Under laws of Public Accommodation, you can refuse to write any message you don’t like, but not on the grounds of the race, the gender or the sexual orientation of the customer, i.e you can’t refuse to provide a service because somebody is black, when you would provide the same service for a white man.

            Jack Phillips did not refuse accommodation. He offered the couple “any cake in the shop”. What he refused is to violate his own religious principles and in that, he was consistent, even refusing to produce Halloween cakes.

            According to the SCOTUS decision, Phillips was the victim of over-reaching, biased and bigoted behavior on the part of the Colorado Civil Rights Commission. Let us not lose sight of that.

            In the majority SCOTUS opinion, Justice Kennedy wrote “the religious and philosophical objections to gay marriage are protected views and in some instances protected forms of expression.”

            Again, at least in my opinion, this was a bridge too far for anti-discrimination law.

            Liked by 1 person

          • Almost Iowa, If serving gay people bespoke products “violates his religious principles” then he needs to find a workaround to avoid running foul of the law. He chose not to take any of these workarounds and dug his own grave. He is running a cake business, not a church, so he cannot claim religious exemption.

            For some people, serving bespoke products for mixed race couples violates their religious belief. In that case, they should avoid putting themselves in situations where they will be serving mixed-race couples.

            If you disapprove of prostitution, don’t appy for a job in a brothel.

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          • But he did not dig his own grave, the Supreme Court found in his favor and ruled that the Colorado Civil Rights Commission was acting with bias and bigotry. Let’s not lose sight of that

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          • Almost Iowa – That’s right, Jack Phillips’ religious beliefs were deemed by a safe majority of SCOTUS to have been held in contempt by a member of the judiciary of the lower court. However they didn’t find in his favour on the actual discrimination charge. The case will have to be retried, and it’s likely Phillips will lose again, even with a more polite lower court.

            If he wins, then that will turn Public Accommodations laws on their head, because it will ipso facto legitimate refusal of supply to interracial couples on religious grounds.

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          • If he wins, then that will turn Public Accommodations laws on their head, because it will ipso facto legitimate refusal of supply to interracial couples on religious grounds.

            I believe that you are overstating the case. SCOTUS signaled the lines along which future arguments will take place. Public Accommodation laws have historically balanced the right of access to service against the right of free association. Those conflicts have been resolved, that is settled law.

            SCOTUS is now saying that it will review the conflict between first amendment right of religion and expression with the right of access to service, which speaks directly to the Phillips case.

            But there is something else going on here, as Willis said,

            after years of progress since Stonewall, you are literally snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.

            In the case of Jack Phillips, it sure looks like the gay community having won the war, is scouring the countryside seeking out and destroying the last vestiges of resistance.

            It is always unwise for the oppressed to become the oppressors.

            Meanwhile, especially as we see in Minnesota, and in Europe, the waves of refugees from Islamic countries, Southeast Asia and Africa are responding to the cultural conflicts that are at the core of this discussion by becoming more and more insular, isolated and embittered.

            It is one thing to mandate that those who come to live here conform to our laws – but that only works if you don’t push too hard and are willing to accept their refusal to conform with a wink and a nod.

            While gay activists have achieved great success, which I applaud, there is a need to realize that since society has gone a long, long way toward changing its views, it is perhaps time to bend a little in the other direction.

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        • Almost Iowa:

          I believe that you are overstating the case.

          Hardly! What is the difference between refusal of an “unclean” or “sinful” mixed-race relationship, which is against the deeply-held religious belief of a baker, and a same-sex relationship, which is likewise against the deeply-held religious belief of a baker? The grounds for religious refusal are identical, since both relationships are sinful.

          But what business is it of the baker’s to judge that someone else is sinning? He isn’t “participating”, so why would God smite him? To assuage God’s anger, he can put anti-gay marriage signs up in his bakery, and preach to the sinners about their gay demons, but the fact remains taht refusal of the service is based on their sexual orientation alone.

          He bakes cakes only for straight weddings, erroneously claiming his custom wedding cakes are sacred and that all weddings are religious. Thus, if the gay couple had a straight wedding, he would take their money. So, how can a gay couple have a straight wedding?

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          • It is still overstating the case.

            While there is little logical difference between opposing gay marriage and interracial marriage, there is also no logical difference between gay marriage and polygamous marriage, though SCOTUS chose to rule on gender rather than number. Frankly, it did so because gay people are a substantial (and influential) demographic and polygamous people are not.

            Law is not necessarily logical because human behavior is not logical.

            But more to the point, there is a substantial body of religious exception to common laws.

            The most glaring is conscientious objection to conscription. I couldn’t think of anything more discriminatory than sending one person to war and exempting another.

            In Minnesota and Iowa, we have all kinds of religious exemptions for the Amish.

            But here is the salient point. While it is true that at some time, somewhere, somebody out there in the vast expanses of America might use religious exception to refuse to provide a limited range of service on the basis of sexual orientation or even (possibly) race, it is in the interest of society to not press the issue.

            The law realizes that a vice is a virtue taken too far and laws that were once built to protect citizens from oppression can easily become instruments of oppression.

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          • Almost Iowa

            They are exactly analogous. Mixed-race marriages are now legal, and so are same-sex marriages. Polygamous marriages are not, and maybe never will be, at least not in our lifetime unless Islam gains a foothold, in which case child marriages may also become legal and women once again become the property of their husbands.

            Be that as it may, if Phillips wins the right to turn away same-sex couples, then he and all other businesses in America ipso facto win the right to turn away ANY couples for any reason, so long as their religious belief tells them to do that. Surely the Supreme Court can’t be expected to rule individually on all the different religious beliefs on the basis of which service may be refused? If it’s your religious belief that your customers are sinning, then that’s sufficient enough reason to refuse anyone your custom service, which is the Phillips argument. He doesn’t agree with people being gay, so he refuses to make anything “just for them”.

            Why stop at sinful mixed-race and same-sex relationships? If a religion doesn’t exist with a listed sin that allows you to turn away a couple where one is taller than the other, or fatter than the other, or smarter than the other, then you can start your own and make it a sin for a tall person to marry a smart person, or a vegan to marry a carnivore, or a cornucopia of other sinful unions. Hell, there are over 40,000 denominations of Christianity in existence already, with hundreds of new denominations forming every month, alongside over 70 warring factions of Islam, and countless non-Abrahamic religions to boot. Are you sure you want to turn over commercial jurisprudence to the whims of religious belief?

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          • Derek, I think we have probably said all that could be said and will never agree – but I must say, you are a gentleman. I value your views and appreciate the civility and skill with which you stated your case.

            Liked by 1 person

          • Almost Iowa, and it’s ditto from me. Thank you.

            In parting, I should mention that the views I expressed have evolved over time, as have Willis’s. For some reason we ended up at opposite ends of the spectrum we started on. On gay chat threads, I was initially arguing the exact points that have been made here but slowly I started to think all this down to grass roots.

            The conclusions I drew were:
            No-one should be forced to say, write, draw, paint, sculpt, design or think anything they don’t want to
            No-one should be forced to stock an item in their store that they don’t want to
            No-one should be forced to believe something they don’t believe
            No-one should be forced to follow the tenets of someone else’s religion
            No-one should be turned away because of their immutable innate characteristics of gender, race or sexual orientation.

            Now let’s say all that again in the affirmative, hip to the pedagogical zeitgeist:
            People should be free to say, write, draw, paint, sculpt, design or think whatever they want
            People should be free to stock any item they want in their store
            People should be free to believe whatever they want
            People should be free to follow any religion they want, or no religion
            People should be able to buy whatever they want, wherever they want, irrespective of their immutable innate characteristics of gender, race or sexual orientation.

            In the case of the anti-gay bakeries, these declarations are sadly mutually exclusive. I can agree that this has been enormously destructive to the LGBT cause and that compromise is called for, but it involves concessions by BOTH sides. I rest my case.

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          • Derek Williams August 28, 2018: “Almost Iowa, and it’s ditto from me. Thank you.”

            “The conclusions I drew were:” …
            and
            “Now let’s say all that again in the affirmative, hip to the pedagogical zeitgeist:” …

            Nicely done!

            In the case of the anti-gay bakeries, these declarations are sadly mutually exclusive. I can agree that this has been enormously destructive to the LGBT cause and that compromise is called for, but it involves concessions by BOTH sides.

            Yes, now there is room to work things out. In the latest jargon, this is ‘intersectionality’. In other words, there is an overlap of conflicting values, an ‘interference fit’, and forcing it just makes the problem worse. Both sides need to turn a little blind eye (not the same as turning the other cheek). Fundamentalist LGBT meets fundamentalist Christian? Not good, better that the moderates keep them apart. The legal system is also at fault here for letting a minor personal issue escalate into a public cause.

            Like

      • Bear August 27, 2018 at 10:31 am

        Arguing with him isn’t going to open his mind since he can’t even understand the issue rationally.

        Thanks for the interesting comment, Bear. I was with you to the end, quoted above.

        First, I greatly prefer when people discuss the ideas and not the man. This is particularly true when we start ascribing negative qualities to a man we’ve never met, based on a few of his words.

        Next, at times I am only tangentially writing for my nominal partner in the ongoing discussion. Instead, I’m writing for the lurkers, the majority of good folks who read the blog, follow the threads, but rarely comment. Whether or not Derek changes his mind is not all that important to me. His mind may or may not be set … but many of the lurkers’ minds are questioning, wondering, and choosing. I write in large measure for them.

        Next, Derek’s mind may be set in stone, or he might have the scales fall from his eyes, or perhaps he sees more clearly than any of us. I don’t know, and I will not oppose him in my mind by claiming that he is less than perfect …

        Next, as soon as we start attacking our opponents rather than their ideas, they win! Crazy, I know, but here’s why. Attacking the person leaves their ideas uncontested. And uncontested ideas tend to stick. Not a good look.

        Next, having an honorable opponent like Derek forces me to clarify my stand, examine my underpinnings, research my weak points, and generally tune up my beliefs … this is an incredible boon in a discussion. Doesn’t happen when everyone agrees.

        Finally, all of us are here in part to learn, including Derek. What we learn from others depends in part on how others treat us …

        My best to you, and to everyone,

        w

        Liked by 2 people

        • Sorry. My frustration was that Derek refuses to address the issue you brought up. Forcing someone to create something that they disagreed with. He keeps going back to trying to make it about not selling a product to them. Which they offered to do and had done so in the past.

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      • Bear – We cannot allow religious belief to dictate commerce, and to do so will open a Pandora’s Box of craziness, since there is no agreement on many issues, such as women’s ordination, birth control and divorce.

        I don’t think anyone bothers to read to the end of any of my posts, and just flies off a response. I already addressed your issue many times over. The Muslim cannot sue a store for not stocking anything it doesn’t ordinarily stock, anymore than I could sue a Halal butcher for not stocking pork, or the Ford Motor Company for not supplying me with a Rolls-Royce. They don’t stock these items and cannot be pressured into stocking anything they don’t want to. But whatever they DO stock, they have to be willing to sell to everybody, irrespective of race, gender or sexual orientation.

        The baker, the florist, the printer, the photographer, the hotelier all refuse to supply their services to LGBT people on the grounds of their religious belief. Wait till the “belief” that is being forced on you is Islamic, and see whether you still agree that LGBT people should be subject to the rules of a religion they don’t even belong to.

        It’s a civil marriage, held in a registry office. Religious marriages are held in churches. The the baker sells custom wedding cakes, only to heterosexual couples. But he has no right to force his religious belief on to me by denying me the same service he freely gives to heterosexual couples.

        Try inserting “Black” in place of “LGBT” and re-read the above to see if that makes it any easier for you to understand.

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        • No you have not addressed the issue. Your still talking about not serving someone vs not creating something you disagree with. Let’s take your substitution. A Black man walks in and asks for a cake that says “Black Lives Matter” and the owner has just lost his policeman son to a Black man who decided to kill a “Pig cop” because of the rhetoric associated with that statement. Still think the owner doesn’t have a right to refuse? Not even a religious issue but an emotional one.

          How about this one. A man walks into a Kosher deli and asks for beef with cream sauce. The owner has all the ingredients but refuses. Why? It’s not kosher. How about the reverse. An orthodox jew walks into an italian restaurant and demands a kosher meal. The owner has the ingredients but refuses to make it since it’s not an italian recipe. Discrimination!

          What the baker was refusing was to create something. They offered to sell anything in the store to the couple just not create something else. That’s what you still seem to be avoiding.

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          • Bear – none of your examples constitute discrimination, and all the refusals would be upheld. The Kosher deli sells Kosher products. He doesn’t have to sell products that aren’t Kosher. Same for Halal. Same as the Ford Motor Company doesn’t have to sell me a Rolls-Royce.

            Your black man with the Black Lives Matter message should get his cake iced, regardless of the emotional state of the baker. If the baker can’t do it, then he can order a subordinate to do it. It’s the black customer’s fault that another black man killed the baker’s son.

            It’s a bit of a grey area though, because for the black man to sue, he would have to show that the baker refused because he was black. In this example, it is probable that the baker DID refuse because of the race of the customer, given the circumstances as you describe them, but it would be hard to prove.

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        • Then would not a regular grocery that stocked kosher food also be guilty of discrimination for not stocking Halal?

          “Wait till the “belief” that is being forced on you is Islamic, and see whether you still agree that LGBT people should be subject to the rules of a religion they don’t even belong to.”

          How would an Islamic belief be forced on me? The only way is through the power of the state which is what happened to the bakers. What “belief” was forced on the gay couple? What rule? Yet you have no problem with the state enforcing the beliefs of LGBT people on Christians. They weren’t denied any right. Again, they had no problem selling cakes to gays only creating a message they disagreed with. What gave them the right to demand someone create something? You seem to refuse to address that issue and fall back on claiming it’s commerce.

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          • Bear – You keep insisting that my being gay is a “belief”. I don’t know where you got this idea, but it is something I am, not a belief. If I want a cake for my wedding, Phillips will refuse it because I am gay. He would bake the cake if I were straight. The cake isn’t a “message” I want to send. I am not “promoting my belief” any more than a straight couple are “promoting a belief” when they order a cake for their wedding.

            Being heterosexual isn’t your belief, it is the way you were born, and you cannot change that.

            Now the baker has a religious belief. He belives his cakes are sacred and that all weddings are religious. He stated this on the record. This is simply not true, and it absolutely wasn’t true for the gay couple he refused. They didn’t have any idea they would be buying a “sacred cake” or that their wedding would be “religious”.

            Civil marriages are held in registry offices, religious weddings are held in churches. Masterpiece Cakes aren’t a church, nor are they a private club, therefore thay cannot claim the religious exemption from the Colorado Anti-discrimination law. Their store is open to the public, not just members of the public who aren’t gay, ALL members of the public. If they cannot run their public business without violating their religious belief, then they will have to find workarounds, such as getting a subordinate to decorate the cake, or outsource the work, or simply cease providing the bespoke service and sell from the shelf.

            You can’t refuse people on the grounds they are the wrong race or the wrong gender or the wrong sexual orientation for your private religious beliefs. This is a public store, open to the public. ALL of the public.

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    • David Lang – True, but it was being heard by SCOTUS at the time, and became law soon after. She knew that was possible when she stood for election. After the SCOTUS decision, she should have stood down if her religious beliefs prevented her from doing her job.

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      • The point it, at the time that she refused the license, it was still illegal in that state. the fact that it became legal later doesn’t change that fact.

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        • David Lang – As I said, it was being heard at the time Davis won the election, and she knew that it at least possible if not likely, that Obergefell would win his case. Once the SCOTUS decision came down, she should have resigned if she couldn’t honour her Oath of Office because of her religious beliefs. Alternatively, she could have appointed someone else in her office to sign them in her place, but instead she put on an extravagant display of sanctimony, and then wrote a book on whose proceeds she can comfortably retire, whilst promoting it on book tours.

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          • Point of fact. Scotus can not and does not create Law. They struck down an ban on Gay marriage this does not create a law. States could in fact choose to not issue any marriage licenses if they wanted or they could raise the age requirement to 50 or any other such thing.

            Keep in mind the US government only started recognizing and giving benefits to marriage during Jim Crow so that southern democrats could prohibit interracial unions. A major part of civil rights was barring that practice.

            Personally I don’t think the government has any right to involve itself in marriage whatsoever we should end all tax benefits and allow insurance companies etc to develop their own expanded coverage policy rules as to who you can share a plan with. Marriage is an agreement between individuals recognized by the community/church to confirm the co mingling of assets and liability. No license is needed.

            Why the LGBT community wanted so bad to be recognized by the government is beyond me.

            Progressives have this thought process that entails anything which is not banned is mandatory.

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          • Ben PA – It boiled down to financial benefits such as tax exemptions that the government previously gave only to heterosexual married couples, even in states where LGBT marriage was legal.
            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_v._Windsor#Background

            After [her wife] Spyer’s death in 2009, Windsor was required to pay $363,053 in federal estate taxes on her inheritance of her wife’s estate. Had federal law recognized the validity of their marriage, Windsor would have qualified for an unlimited spousal deduction and paid no federal estate taxes.

            Gay and lesbian people are never going to marry the opposite sex, so we would always be financially worse off than a straight married couple. You may hold the view that we should be worse off, but SCOTUS upheld Windsor’s appeal by a slender-thin one-vote majority. That majority is now lost with Republican appointments of partisan judges.

            With the Republican Party now stacking the Supreme Court with its allies, it is possible that Obergefell and Windsor decisions could be reversed. Since 2006, a Constitutional Amendment bill Marriage Protection Amendment whose purpose is to declare marriage as solely between a man and a woman, has been on the House Floor since 2006, when if failed by a mere 54 votes. This has been sitting in Congress awaiting a 2/3 Congressional majority. Once this is passed, and has been ratified by the majority of US states, the Republican Supreme Court will overturn all the same-sex marriages that have occurred in America.

            So you see, for us, as for all disliked minorities, “the price of freedom is eternal vigilance”.

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  11. Willis, this is probably the saddest post of yours I’ve ever read here or at WUWT.
    I just don’t get why otherwise ordinary people have to make a “thing” about some aspect of their personal circumstances, preferences, afflictions or abilities.
    The world doesn’t need to know some things about us.
    Sexual orientation is one such thing.
    What any 2 (or more) consenting adults choose to do in the privacy of their bedrooms is none of anyone else’s business.
    I stress “privacy”
    When matters of sex are brought out of the bedroom and into the courtroom, we know that human frailty is under the spotlight. Laws can never reflect what human sexual escapades should or should not be limited to.
    It’s just all downhill when anyone feels that the world needs to know what their preferred sexual capers involve, and to then try to frame laws around their “thing”, well – that way lies madness, in my opinion.
    (and just in case anyone thinks I’m a wowser because of my view on this, I’ll have you know that I once saw my neighbors in the missionary position, and I didn’t file a court order demanding that they paint out all their windows)

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    • Well why don’t straight people stop making ” a thing” about their sexual proclivities? For a start, a wedding is a public declaration of your sexual orientation, and your engagement and wedding rings are flaunting it. Then at the reception, the Best Man regales your family and friends with bawdy tales of heterosexual conquests past. Then on to the honeymoon suite at your hotel, where the ENTIRE STAFF know what you’re going to be doing that night, and they prepare the room accordingly.

      In the public domain, practically every movie ever made, every book every written, every song ever sung, every dance ever danced, celebrates your heterosexuality with love stories and sometimes explicit, even graphic language. You can freely hold the hand of your wife or girlfriend in the street, and I guarantee, NO-ONE will bother you. You won’t get snide glances, no-one will spit at you or throw anything at you, hell, you may even get a warm smile or two. And if you embrace or kiss your partner in broad daylight, people will walk past you without hassling you. Lovers’ Lanes exist everywhere for your pleasure, but when gay people want to make out in a car, well that’s flaunting our sexuality.

      You’re so steeped in privilege, you can’t even see it. LGBT people don’t want any more than you already have. But when we try to have a gay character to represent us on TV, or hold our partner’s hand in public, well, then it’s a different story entirely. When we do it, it’s “flaunting our sexuality”.

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      • And without me revealing anything about my bedroom capers, you conclude that I always play with a straight bat?
        Mate, I don’t care what you or anyone else does with other consenting adults in the privacy of your bedroom, or any other place that doesn’t cause public discomfort.
        (For the record, I don’t enjoy seeing ‘lovers’ putting on public displays of their passion. I think it lacks dignity. Affection is different – I hug everyone.)
        As for the traditional ceremonies that reflect society’s broad alignment to hetero orientation – well what else would you expect when (by your own estimation) 90 – 95% of humans are hetero?
        I have a profound permanent physical disability that is not obvious to others in general social interaction.
        But it’s something that I don’t think others need to know about, unless I require assistance, or I’m seeking treatment, so I don’t mention it.
        And I just let the jibes & jokes about the ailment I have slide, rather than “educating” people that I might be offended. There’s just no win / win to be had from such a campaigning approach i.m.o.
        Some things in life each of us just has to deal with, don’t we?
        (And yes I agree I am otherwise privileged in many, many ways. All of them more important / valuable than “bludgeoning” some extra societal recognition rung on Mazlow’s hierarchy of needs. So are you, by the sound of things)

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        • Mr. If you have a wedding, there is no conceivable way you can avoid “mentioning” it. Weddings are a public declaration of mutual commitment, romantic and sexual love. It is inconsistent for you to be ok with heterosexuals having this but when gays have it, then it’s “flaunting it”.

          At no stage have I suggested above that any of these behaviours that heterosexuals engage in are wrong, or even that they’re distasteful to me. They’re not, and even if they were, nothing I can do about it. My point is that when gays do exactly the same thing, that heterosexuals do, then we are accused of “flaunting our sexuality”.

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          • I have no problem with gay marriage.
            Most people in the civilised world don’t.
            But the issue Willis has raised here is one of individual choice – just because everyone might tolerate things they aren’t part of, doesn’t mean they will celebrate them.
            I could give numerous obvious analogies, but you’re intelligent enough to know what I mean.
            (Don’t disappoint me please)

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          • Mr. The baker isn’t celebrating gay marriage by baking a cake. It’s not a sacred cake, unless he can prove it is in any other forum than in his own mind. If the cake is “celebrating heterosexual marriage”, he doesn’t even have the decency to write this on his menu – “Masterpiece takes pride in its sacred heterosexual wedding cakes”. This notion wouldn’t have entered the heads of the hapless gay couple seeking to reward their friend Jack Phillips with the honour of their commissioning of a cake for the biggest day in their lives.

            Phillips entered his business knowing that one day he might have to serve all kinds of people he doesn’t approve of, or even find repellent. But the law of Public Accommodations means he cannot refuse a couple because of their race, likewise, under local anti-discrimination law of Colorado, he cannot refuse someone because of their sexual orientation:
            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Public_accommodations

            For him, every wedding cake is sacred, rather like the Monty Python sketch. For him every marriage is religious, but that again is in his head. Every marriage is NOT religious. Civil marriages are conducted in registry offices and are specifically NOT religious, whereas religious marriages are conducted by churches in churches. His idea that the gay couple are appropriating his sacred cakes for a religious marriage is pure fantasy. If his religious belief prevents from obeying the local ordinance on Public Accommodations for LGBT people, then he has to work around this, either by outsourcing the message writing part of the transaction, or by ceasing the custom design aspect or by starting another kind of business that he knows won’t conflict with his religious beliefs.

            If you are against prostitution for religious reasons, or any other reason, why would you go looking for work in a brothel?

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          • so you saying that a director must agree to film any script they are presented with if the person presenting it is of a ‘protected class’?

            are you saying any author must agree to a commission to write a book if the person asking is gay?

            a song writer must write a song?

            etc.

            If you don’t agree that these creative people must spend their efforts on anyone who asks, just because they will do it for someone else, then why should a baker or photographer be required to accept a commission for something they disagree with?

            If you do think such things should be required, let’s get Candice Owens to tell Madonna to write a pro-Trump song (on the basis that if she doesn’t, she’s anti-black)

            Now, if you want to make an argument that there is nothing creative in creating a custom cake, that’s a very different argument. But you have a lot of history to overturn to do this. It’s far more creative than many things that have been shown in art galleries (piss christ for example)

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          • David Lang – No-one has to do anything they don’t want to do (except pay taxes!). The law on Public Accommodations doesn’t cover the areas you mention, and includes mainly retail stores, rental and service establishments, educational institutions, recreational facilities, and service centers. You can’t force a novelist to write a book he doesn’t want to write, unless he is under contract to you to do so. A gay person can’t demand anything a straight person can’t demand, such as that someone write a book. “Protected class” means that a vulnerable minority can’t artbitrarily be refused service on the grounds of their race, their gender or their sexual orientation, i.e. you can’t put a sign that says “No Jews, Gays, Irish, Poles, Italians or Blacks”, or behave as though you have put up such a sign. As mentioned in several of my other posts, only a minority of states protect LGBT minorities, but Colorado is such a state, and was in that state the Phillips fell foul of the anti-discrimination law by refusing his services to a gay couple.

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Public_accommodations

            There are exemptions for churches and private clubs, but a retail business is neither a church nor a club. For the baker to claim religious exemption, he would have to operate as a church or as a private club, not as a business open to the general public. Phillips doesn’t qualify for exemption from the Public Accommodations laws.

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  12. The problem with marriage is that it is both a civil and religious activity and the two have become intertwined. The civil part is just contractual. The State doesn’t care whether your in love or not and civil union should be just another form of contract IMO. The state doesn’t have any say in the religious part. I’ve been annoyed with activists trying to push their beliefs on religious institutions. If you don’t agree with the teachings form your own church.

    Using hate speech as an example is probably the wrong one. Consider a nudist coming into a shop wanting a cake to promote nudism or someone with a desire for a sexually explicit cake. How about a baker who’s a Democrat being asked to make a cake with “Make America Great Again” or a gay baker asked to make a cake saying “Marriage is between a man and a woman”? Bet the answer would be “that’s different!”. And no the second one isn’t hate speech though gay activist keep trying to make everything the don’t like into hate speech. No different than shouting “racist” when you disagree with someone even if it has nothing to do with race.

    As long as the shop owner is willing to sell a cake that is shaped like a cake used at weddings the gay couple can write any damn thing they want on it. Add two men or two women as the case may be also. Stop trying to force your beliefs on everyone else. And it is a question of your beliefs vs someone else’s.

    The next act will probably be someone approaching a baker or photographer who doesn’t believe in gay marriage but reluctantly agrees to preform the requested service. When they don’t like the result they’re going to sue claiming that the reason the service was not to their liking was because they were being discriminated against.

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    • Bear – Being gay isn’t my “belief”, it is the way I was born, and I can’t change it. Unless you are me, you cannot know for certain whether being gay was a decision I made or not

      Please read my posts before asking me to explain it all again. No-one can force a Democrat baker to print “Make America Great Again”, nor a gay baker to write “Marriage is between a man and a woman” on a wedding cake, because neither the Democrat baker nor the gay baker are discriminating against the customer by refusing.

      The baker on the other hand DOES bake cakes for weddings, so he cannot refuse his service to gay customers if he provides it to straight customers. The message (i.e. the cake) is the same, the only difference is the sexual orientation of the customers. What if he believes blacks marrying whites is sinful? Many folk DO believe this, and have scriptures to back them up. Should he refuse the interracial couple?

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      • Painter X paints pictures of people, so you can force him to paint a picture of you in the nude.

        it’s all the same, right?

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          • David Lang – because the painter doesn’t paint nudes. Just like the Halal and Kosher delis don’t sell pork. However the baker bakes cakes, but refuses his services to LGBT couples. If the painter were to say, “I don’t sell to gays, or blacks, or Jews, or females” etc, then he might be discriminating, but it would depend on the specialisation of his skills, for example he might paint the male form well but not the female form. The baker on the other hand sells cakes for weddings. I am sure he finds all kinds of clients repellent, but it is the gay couples whom he singles out for refusal of service, based on the phony idea that his cakes are sacred, and that he is participating in their wedding. Well he isn’t, any more than the cleaners are “participating”. It’s a store open to the public, without a sign warning gay people they will be refused. Phillips is still in business by the way, and selling cakes off the shelf. He has a very health GoFundMe account balance.

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          • where did you pick up that the painter doesn’t paint nudes?

            they may, but still not want to paint one of you

            or be interested in painting nudes of attractive women in classic poses, but not be willing to paint porn.

            Why should you require that anyone apply their creative efforts to a subject they don’t agree with?

            We aren’t talking about refusing normal products, we are talking about someone refusing a custom commission to create something.

            If you require the baker to accept a commission for something they disagree with, why not the painter, or the writer, or the movie director (or the movie star), …

            While it’s not a perfect line. I think it’s a pretty useful line to say that at the point where you are commissioning something creative (something where the result can be covered by copyright), then the person you are offering the commission should have the ability to refuse the commission.

            And they should be able to say whatever reason they want for refusing the commission, without being second-guessed and hounded because someone else doesn’t like their reason.

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          • David Lang – the Bible states that it is a sin to charge interest on a loan. Can a religious person who believes this is the Word of God refuse to pay interest to their bank citing a “deeply and sincerely held religious belief”? In Leviticus and Deuteronomy, recounted in Matthew, it further states that disobedient children must be put to death. Is that an action followers of the Bible should be taking? The baker is motivated by his religious beliefs, fine, but he is foisting them on me. If you’re running a public business and your religious beliefs prevent you from serving the public, then you should tailor the business so you don’t break anti-discrimination laws, which is what Phillips did. He fought the law, and the law won. His win at SCOTUS was due to the mockery her received at the hearing, not the discrimination aspects of the case.

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        • Thanks, David. Derek is making exactly that claim. Every picture is the same, every cake is the same. Or in his words:

          The baker on the other hand DOES bake cakes for weddings, so he cannot refuse his service to gay customers if he provides it to straight customers. The message (i.e. the cake) is the same, the only difference is the sexual orientation of the customers.

          NO. The message (i.e. the cake) is NOT the same. Google “wedding cake dildo” if you think the message of every wedding cake is the same.

          It is about the MESSAGE, Derek. Nobody has to carry your message. We cannot discriminate against you because you are gay, and rightly so.

          But we don’t have to carry your message.

          In friendship,

          w.

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          • Willis – being black isn’t a “message”, nor is being gay, so why should be be able to refuse service to blacks (or gays)? If his religious belief prevents him from serving everyone, then he can tailor his business it so it doesn’t infringe anti-discrimination law, or start another business, or run it from a church.

            Remember, he was found guilty by a court of breaking anti-discrimination law. It is the legal system you should be challenging, if you want bakers to be able to refuse their services to gay couples. The gay couple didn’t drive Christian couples into bankruptcy. They were supported by the legal system, that found their case proven.

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    • Ellen – On that we can agree. This case has made many enemies for the LGBT equal civil rights movement, and I am not convinced the Pyrrhic Victory will have been worth it for either side.

      I have acknowledged this several times (but this gets ignored repeatedly as the posts above show), the case has been a disaster for the LGBT cause for several reasons:

      1. It is about a clash between religious belief and non-discriminatory commerce, and that was never going to end well. When it comes to competing religions, they fight among themselves so much, it’s a wonder they have time for anything else.
      2. Having gay couples win in such cases has create martyrs out of the wrongdoers, who now are perceived as the victim, instead of the gay couples they refused service to.

      There aren’t enough gays in the world to “bully” straights, so any case they bring has to be rock solid and have sizable support. Personally, I think the gay couples should have tested the law, won their case, but then refused the monetary settlement. Thus they would have had the moral ascendancy. That didn’t happen, so now here we are, a handful of keyboard warriors fighting it out on the merits of the case.

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  13. Derek Williams August 27, 2018 at 4:31 pm

    Willis – being black isn’t a “message”, nor is being gay, so why should be be able to refuse service to blacks (or gays)?

    He is NOT refusing service to anyone. He is refusing to bake ONE PARTICULAR CAKE. He also refuses to bake Halloween cakes. Are you gonna claim this is discriminatory against pumpkins? IT’S NOT ABOUT YOU!

    If his religious belief prevents him from serving everyone, then he can tailor his business it so it doesn’t infringe anti-discrimination law, or start another business, or run it from a church.

    Or jerks could stop insisting that he carry their message no matter what it is.

    Remember, he was found guilty by a court of breaking anti-discrimination law.

    No, actually that ruling was overturned. This pissed off some of the gay etc. folks. As a result he’s been asked to bake every kind of cake to see if he’d refuse, including a cake featuring Satan licking a real dildo.

    So tell us, Derek:

    1. Is it possible that a cake of Satan licking a dildo might, you know, be carrying a different message from a cake saying “Happy 90th Birthday, Grandpa!’?

    2. According to you, if he refuses to bake such a cake, he’s guilty of discriminating against Satanists, and because that is recognized as a religion, that’s religious discrimination.

    It is the legal system you should be challenging, if you want bakers to be able to refuse their services to gay couples. The gay couple didn’t drive Christian couples into bankruptcy. They were supported by the legal system, that found their case proven.

    I do challenge the legal system. I think it has fallen into huge disrepute by idiotic rulings. And the gay couple have set the gay cause back by decades. Congratulations.

    w.

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    • Willis – why do you keep asking about the dildo on the cake? No, no and no, no-one is required to create a dildo on a cake. Again and again I tell you, no-one, Jewish or otherwise, is required to put a swastika on a cake. No-one can compel a Democrat to put a Republican message on a cake, and no-one can compel you to draw anything you don’t want to, because none of these examples you keep adducing involve discrimination.

      The baker on the other hand is discriminating and was found guilty of the same in a lower court. The Supreme Court overturned this on the grounds that his religious belief had been ridiculed, not on the merits or otherwise of the discrimination aspects of the case, which remain undecided.

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      • Derek, The message is the implicit endorsement of same sex marriage involved in providing a custom cake for the event.

        If the Cake Boss were to make an elaborate cake for the KKK would people not rightfully condemn him for implicitly endorsing them by accepting the contract?

        If he generated a pro-life cake would he not be tacitly saying he respects that opinion?

        Even if he also makes planned parent hood cake the next week the message is he cares more about money than the abortion debate. or that he also respects the pro-choice decision.

        If he refuses to make an elaborate atheist god is dead cake he is not discriminating against the atheists he is refusing to endorse the message his involvement would imply.

        The same thing is happening with banks and other companies dropping the NRA as a customer they do not want to imply that they support the message being represented.

        If banks were refusing to do business with GLAAD I imagine the press coverage would be slightly different.

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        • Ben PA as in all my other answers, the answer to yours is the same. Public Accommodations laws do not mandate any of the things you mention. All of the cakes you mention can be legitimately refused for any or no reason, regardless of who orders them, because the refusal does not discriminate against a protected class of race, gender or sexual orientation. If Jack Phillips moved to another state where it is legal to refuse service to gay people for any or no reason, which is actually most of America, then he could refuse to sell them even a bog-standard cake off his shelf. In most of the country, you can be legally refused healthcare, education, food, rental accommodation, insurance, and of course, wedding cakes.

          Jack Phillips refuses his custom service to gay people because he believes their relationship is sinful, and he doesn’t want to endorse it by making them a cake. What people are not grasping is that while bakers are currently only refusing gay people, knowing that there is public support for such refusal, the key to their refusal is sin. There are a lot more sins in the lexicon than gay people getting married.

          A large number of Americans believe that it is sinful for a black man to marry a white woman, and vice versa, for religious reasons. It has only been legal for blacks to marry whites in the past 50 years in the USA. There are also people who believe Africans are black because of the “Curse of Cain”, and that having dark skin is God’s eternal punishment to all descendants thereof, i.e. the entire human race who aren’t white. A baker who believes in Syriac Christianity would refuse his custom cakes to any non-whites, because he believes they shouldn’t procreate.

          Do you see where this is going? People are fine with refusing service to gays, but are you fine with refusing service to sinners of another stripe, such as I have described here?

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          • Derek, you again willfully miss the point. The refusal was not of serving gay people it was refusing to endorse non traditional marriage. It has nothing to do with sinful or not sinful. Yes there happens to be a religious component in this specific case, but the more important aspects are freedom of association and freedom of speech.

            We have the right to choose what our brand is associated with, and we have the right to not speak in support of something. As always being complicit is endorsement.

            This is a blatant false hood “another state where it is legal to refuse service to gay people for any or no reason, which is actually most of America” No such state or law exists.

            Again refusing to participate in something you do not agree with has nothing to do with who is asking.

            You can refuse to bake a custom cake for the KKK even if it has no writing or explicit content simply because you do not want to be associated with them. You can refuse to allow the NRA to purchase your bill board advertising space because you have content control on your property and do not want to associate with them.

            You can refuse to put make cakes for any group you feel would be against your principles SPLC, Black lives matter, the tea party, Proud boys whoever. We have seen people public shamed for merely not condemning groups and people campaigns to have advertisers pulled an boycotts. This is how it is supposed to work. The market condemns people for the associations they choose to make. Participation is endorsement. If you make participation mandatory you are a totalitarian and will be fought every step of the way.

            “Gay and lesbian people are never going to marry the opposite sex, so we would always be financially worse off than a straight married couple. You may hold the view that we should be worse off, but SCOTUS upheld Windsor’s appeal by a slender-thin one-vote majority. That majority is now lost with Republican appointments of partisan judges.”

            Where and how do you get off accusing me of believing you should be “worse off” I said I personally would have fought to remove the benefits from everyone instead of trying to gain admittance to a system I find to be a governmental over reach. In fact I never even said or implied I had a problem with gay marriage.

            This is a prime example of the point our host was trying to make. You attack an erstwhile ally and friend simply because they acknowledge the constitutional right of other people to disagree with you.

            Acceptance does not equal celebration or participation, not wanting to participate in a gay wedding or a Black lives matter rally doesn’t even mean you are phobic or racist. You can legitimately not want to be associated with events for fear of backlash or reputation harm even if you agree with the message. That certainly applies if you disagree with the message.

            Google the docudrama made about Gosnel and see how many providers of public accommodation refused to participate because they didn’t want to be associated with a quasi pro-life film.

            Good for them, but its the same issue with the cake. It’s the event not the people.

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          • Ben PA – I hope this repsonse ends up in the right place in the thread. As good as WordPress is, its commenting scheme is all over the place,

            First, you’re wrong about LGBT rights being assumed across America. In only about half of the country are there laws of some kind that give LGBT minorities a measure of protection, but in the majority, there aren’t full rights, e.g. public and private employment, and the baker absolutely can refuse service to LGBT customers for any reason or no reason in the midland states:
            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LGBT_rights_in_the_United_States#LGBT_rights_and_state_and_federal_law

            In most of the country, you can legally be fired for being gay, and you can be refused a hotel room for your honeymoon if your spouse is the same gender as you.

            Let’s leave aside the LGBT aspect for a moment and consider a black couple. There is a religious belief that black people have black skin because of the Curse of Cain. Let’s say a Syriac Christian doesn’t agree with black people getting married, because of the Curse of Cain and doesn’t want to celebrate their wedding by baking them a ‘message’, i.e. a custom designed cake. Can he refuse a custom cake to a black couple? It can only be because of their skin colour, because he would bake the celebratory sacred message-in-a-cake, where they only to come to their senses and be a white couple. Then there is the far more widespread religious belief that miscegenation is sinful, such that couples of different race should be forbidden to marry, and for them to do so, is sinful. Just so you know, it was illegal for blacks to marry whites until 50 years ago.

            Can a baker who believes miscegentation to be sinful and doesn’t agree with mixed race marriage, and doesn’t want to “celebrate” it by baking them a celebratory message-in-a-cake, refuse a commission where the husband and wife are not of the same race? For example a Thai marrying a Malaysian, or a Chinese marrying an Arab.

            You can extroplate that to people of different religions marrying, forbidden in many religious cultures. The baker doesn’t agree with people marrying outside their religion. Can the baker refuse a couple a cake because it’s a Jew marrying a Catholic?

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          • Derek said “Can the baker refuse a couple a cake because it’s a Jew marrying a Catholic?”.

            If the cake is on the shelf, no he can’t. If it requires designing a cake especially for them, then yes he can.

            Maybe you should read Ben PA’s last response more carefully, since he did an excellent job. Part of what he said was this:
            “If you do not want to endorse an event you are free to not participate. If that is a gay wedding or a voodoo ceremony or an all black orgy or a white supremacist rally. It does not matter you have the freedom to not be a part of it.”

            Derek – this is the reason that I can’t find any response here that agrees with your stance. You are trying to force participation (and thus celebration) by people who disagree with what is happening, and for them to publicly endorse things they find repugnant. Would you be happy if you were legally obliged to join a KKK march because you were asked to by any “minority” person?

            In that direction lies tyranny.

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          • Simon Derricutt – Notice how in this blog, gay weddings are only ever inflammatorily compared with the most unsavoury of requests, like swastikas, KKK messages and dildos on cakes?

            gay wedding or a voodoo ceremony or an all black orgy or a white supremacist rally

            Jack Phillips says he sells off-the-shelf cakes to couples whose weddings he disagrees with, but what if another baker wouldn’t even go that far and refused those as well? Moreover, the selling of a non-custom cake could arguably be interpreted as “approval” since it still has the baker’s business name on it, and when he bakes the non-custom cakes, he must know that one day a gay couple, a black couple, or a mixed-race couple, or an atheist couple are likely to come in to his store and buy it. By selling it to them with his business brand name on it, by dint of your argument, he is ‘celebrating’ a union he doesn’t agree with. Everyone who goes to the gay/black/interracial/interdenomination wedding could see his association with it.

            You didn’t specifically address my point about a Syriac Christian baker refusing to bake a custom cake for black couples because he believes in the Curse of Cain, or interracial couples because he disagrees with miscegentation, or Muslim bakers potentially refusing to bake cakes for weddings between Muslims and non-Muslims.

            Remember, these are public stores, open to the public, with no signage saying that LGBT, Blacks, Jews, Muslims, Asians, Arabs, or [insert disliked minority] will be refused service if they ask for a custom cake.

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          • Derek – you said “You didn’t specifically address my point about a Syriac Christian baker refusing to bake a custom cake for black couples because he believes in the Curse of Cain, or interracial couples because he disagrees with miscegentation, or Muslim bakers potentially refusing to bake cakes for weddings between Muslims and non-Muslims.”

            Could be you didn’t read it. If the cake is a special order then yes he can refuse it, but if it’s off-the shelf then he cannot refuse it. Much the same as the example I did give, and it’s the same answer for the same reason. You may not like it, but that’s what happens in the USA. Maybe you’d like to join a KKK march because someone from a protected minority asked you to? After all, if you didn’t join the march, then you could (by your argument) be sued and made bankrupt.

            You also said “Simon Derricutt – Notice how in this blog, gay weddings are only ever inflammatorily compared with the most unsavoury of requests, like swastikas, KKK messages and dildos on cakes?”

            The reason for this is to show the absurdity of your position by showing what happens when you apply it to other things that are (maybe) distasteful to you personally, so you can see what other people may feel like if it is applied to them. If we apply the same principles to you as you would like to apply to the baker, then maybe you can see where the line needs to be drawn and people should be allowed their beliefs, whether or not you think they are valid.

            If the baker has something such as a cake for sale on his shelves, he cannot refuse to sell it to anyone for reason of race, religions, sexuality or any of the crazy divisions that someone may think up. However, you can’t force him to make something special, and he can refuse for any reason or for no reason.

            You’ve had a lot of examples of this. You should be able to see that if it is made law that the baker must use his artistry to produce whatever anyone asks of him, then that law will also apply to any other artist or artisan. It will also apply to anyone who provides some sort of service to someone else. Lawyers have a way of twisting the written words so that they can be seen to apply to the current case so they can win it, and that sets a precedent. You might have noticed in the UK that they couldn’t deport a radical Islamic preacher for inciting jihad in the UK because that would have infringed his human rights, since if sent back to Jordan he’d face charges for doing much the same there and might have been executed. You can if you wish regard that as a Free Speech issue, and that he was entitled to call for mass murder. Sometimes you have to balance the options and take the least-worse path, because there isn’t a good solution.

            What you are asking for, which is to be treated the same as everyone else, is reasonable. However, when you demand that people be forced to do things they don’t want to do, that becomes tyranny. You can’t legislate what people think or believe. You note that the examples we’ve given are unsavoury, but that is only your opinion – some people do do things like that (or we wouldn’t have found the examples so easily), and if the law was changed to force people to do things they didn’t want to do, then it seems likely that someone who doesn’t want to do the things you regard as unsavoury will nevertheless be forced to do them. Is this really the society you’d like to live in?

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  14. Derek Williams August 27, 2018 at 4:55 pm

    Willis – why do you keep asking about the dildo on the cake?

    Thanks, Derek, I do it because you keep claiming that all cakes are interchangeable, and that if he makes a custom wedding cake to someone’s fantasy, he perforce must, MUST make one to your fantasy.

    I’m pointing out that forcing him to make YOUR cake is tyranny.

    I’m pointing out that if he is free to refuse to make a cake with Satan licking a dildo, he can refuse a cake with any message for any reason.

    It has nothing to do with the CUSTOMER. The person asking for Satan licking a dildo might be black, white, gay, religious, female, or any group. The issue is NOT their race or their sexual orientation. It is the MESSAGE. If the baker doesn’t like the message he’s free to refuse it.

    Now, you’ve already agreed that it is wrong to force a baker to bake a wedding cake with a dildo … but what if the people who want the dildo wedding cake are gay? Are you going to sit there with a straight face and tell me that refusing to bake that dildo wedding cake is anti-gay discrimination?

    Really?

    As to what the court ruled, that is not of the slightest interest to me. I’m interested in the right and wrong of the situation, not what some judge said.

    w.

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    • WIllis – you’re still not getting it. If the people who are ordering the cake with the dildo are gay, it can be refused. If the people who are ordering the cake with the dildo are straight, it can be refused. If the people who are ordering the cake with the dildo are Jewish, it can be refused. If the people who are ordering the cake with the dildo are Gentiles, it can be refused. If the people who are ordering the cake with the dildo are transgender, it can be refused. If the people who are ordering the cake with the dildo are Black, it can be refused. If the people who are ordering the cake with the dildo are White, it can be refused.

      In every case above, the dildo on the cake can be refused, because none of them involve discrimination. The baker doesn’t have to put a dildo on a cake for anybody at all.

      BUT if he DOES after all put a dildo on a cake for a White customer, and then a Black customer comes in, sees the White customer’s dildo cake and wants one too, then if the baker says “I only serve these to Whites”, then he is guilty of discrimination.

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      • Derrick you have never addressed what the message that was to be on the cake? Your argument doesn’t hold water. A plain cake can be bought by anyone, there was no argument from the baker. In fact they were repeat customers. The message was refused, not the cake.
        You have already agreed that another person has the right to refuse a message or to do something they disagree with, no difference in race, color, or other.
        Your arguments are without merits.

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          • So you are arguing a strawman, you do not know the answer, ok, as I stated your arguments are without merit.
            Thanks

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          • The message is his support of the event by participating.

            If you participate in an event by providing custom commissioned work you are endorsing the event period. You are associating yourself with the event.

            We have freedom of association.

            If you do not want to endorse an event you are free to not participate. If that is a gay wedding or a voodoo ceremony or an all black orgy or a white supremacist rally. It does not matter you have the freedom to not be a part of it.

            Being a protected class does not give you the right to force people to do things against there will or associate with those they disagree with.

            Being able to force people to do labor for you against there will has commonly be called slavery through out history.

            You are advocating that no gay person can ever be refused service because it is automatically discrimination, thus all providers are slaves to the gay community.

            Do you not see at all how this is not the way to retain support for you community? You won you got gay marriage nationally when it never passed a successful popular vote in any state.

            This is rubbing it in the face of any and all who disagree. You are trying to force celebration not just acceptance.

            You can not force people to participate only to tolerate and you have that. The gay mafia is eroding your support among people who have fought with you for equal rights and treatment, because they can’t accept the fight is over and you won. It’s time to be gracious winners and make peace with your former opponents and allow them to live and let live.

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          • Ben PA – I have answered this in response to another of your posts, re the baker having the right to refuse to custom design a cake for an interracial wedding because he disagrees with miscegenation and doesn’t want to celebrate it, or for a wedding where both spouses are black, and as a Syriac Christian he believes their skin colour is caused by the Curse of Cain, and therefore doesn’t want to celebrate it, or if the two spouse are not of the same religion, and he doesn’t want to celebrate it. For the rest, please look at my other response.

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  15. Derek vs Willis, or Customer vs Message

    A straight couple wanting a gay message cake may be doing it sarcastically or maybe in support of gays in their wedding party, and thus being able to pass muster, in the judgment of the baker: “I don’t mind carrying this message in this context.”

    I think Derek’s point is that the message can’t be decoupled from the person, no matter how hard Willis tries.

    Personally, I thought the 7-2 decision focused on the religious aspect of the baker, and how their rights must also be respected in this case. I think this is where Willis is going, by calling it a “message.” (A message that grinds against religious doctrine)

    I understand the left wishes to remove religion from any of these “tests,” but as long as it’s clearly defended in the constitution, these tests of the “two way street” will continue. (that is, the gay couple must respect the right of the baker to refuse service on religious grounds)

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Here’s the part Derek and others are missing.

    “gays shouldn’t be hanged”. OK
    “gay sex should not be illegal.” OK
    “gays should be able to get married.” OK
    “gays should be able to get kids and raise a family.” OK
    “gays should be able to get a wedding cake.” OK

    Do you see a trend here? Gays want to be like normal people. And they keep increasing the demand.
    Society has gone along with this, on the whole.

    “gays should be able to get a wedding cake from a Christian artist.” Uh… OK if the baker is OK with it.
    “gays should be able to get a wedding cake from a Christian baker who objects, and then rub his face in it, ruin his business, report him to the police where the prosecution will gleefully do it for free but where the defendant conceivably face millions in legal bills, hopefully bankrupting him, ruining his life.”
    Uh, NO, you have crossed a line. You are a bad person. Normal people don’t do this.

    You want us to love and respect you? Sorry, that’s not how love and respect are earned.

    The thing that Derek is missing is that gays already have more rights and are more protected from discrimination than ‘normal’ people. Derek assumes that a normal person can get a cake and the gay person cannot. Well, the gay person can, from a different baker, but ignore that for right now. If a normal person asks for a cake, he has no rights. Most likely he will get it, but the law does not back him up on that. Known examples are the normal person asking for a Halloween cake or an anti-american cake, but it could even be a wedding cake. The baker can say no and the normal person can’t do anything about it. We know that the courts do not support any right to wear a MAGA hat in a restaurant, Gays have special rights that others do not have.

    Gays should have basic human rights. Gays should have the same human rights as everyone.
    Different cultures have different ideas of what ‘human rights’ means, and despite the difficulties they have experienced, it is good to keep in mind that it could be a whole lot worse in a different culture.

    Freedom of speech is necessary to keep a democracy. Freedom of religion is necessary to keep a civil society. Laws that prevent discrimination against gays are a good thing, up to a point. When those laws start to override freedom of speech and freedom of religion, they have gone too far and no good can come of it.

    What’s next? What will be the next sexual taboo to be attacked? multiple wives? incest? bestiality? prostitution? I’m not claiming there is any slippery slope here, I’m just asking whether a culture has the right to define some limits on what is allowed. Especially if it cannot come from a religion.

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    • YMMV You certainly managed to twist that around!

      Gays already have more rights and are more protected from discrimination than ‘normal’ people.

      No we don’t, in most of the country we don’t even have equal rights.

      If a normal person asks for a cake, he has no rights. Most likely he will get it, but the law does not back him up on that.

      False. Your fictitious “normal person” cannot be discriminated against on the grounds of his heterosexual orientation any more than we can be discriminated against on the grounds of our homosexual orientation. But be honest, how likely is that to happen anyway?

      Known examples are the normal person asking for a Halloween cake or an anti-american cake, but it could even be a wedding cake. The baker can say no and the normal person can’t do anything about it.

      These examples are red herrings. They have nothing to do with refusal on the grounds of discrimination. If the baker refuses you because you are heterosexual, then you have an actionable case but none of your examples pass muster.

      Next you descend into Slippery Slope fallacy, despite claiming you’re not doing any such thing:

      “multiple wives? incest? bestiality? prostitution?
      I am genuinely surprised you didn’t wheel out pedophilia, that is habitually conflated with homosexuality.

      To find out whether your fears are justifiable, we could do worse than to look at the 26 other countries where same-sex marriage and has been in some cases for decades. Has there been a concomitant push for polygamy? For incest? For bestiality? For prostitution? There hasn’t of course, but you knew that, even as you hit “Post Comment”.

      Even if there had been, how is this caused by giving LGBT the right to find a job, keep a roof over our head, and have access to the goods and services we pay for?

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      • Derek, I didn’t expect you to like all of my comment, but you should give it a fair chance, not a knee-jerk reaction. Laws have an intended goal but they can be abused. In this case the intended goal is to protect gays from discrimination; this is good. Can good laws be used for bad purposes? You bet. Hopefully only rarely. Some ‘victim’ classes are exploiting this in some countries. I’ll let you guess which and I’m not referring to LGBT.

        Slippery Slope? No, it is not that. I’m asking a philosophical question, not a concern. Different cultures accept and forbid different things, for whatever reason, tradition, religion, or I don’t know what. As the Western world becomes more multicultural, there will be more conflicts. How do we decide what we should allow?

        “They can’t help it, they were born like that” sounds good, unless you’re talking about psychopaths.
        Some customs are not compatible with the good of society (whatever that is). Luckily, gayness is not detrimental, so you are safe. Until a different culture assumes power.

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  17. Derek said; “David Lang – the Bible states that it is a sin to charge interest on a loan. Can a religious person who believes this is the Word of God refuse to pay interest to their bank citing a “deeply and sincerely held religious belief”?”

    The religious person had to sign a contract to get the account. As such, both sides need to keep to the contract. You may not know this, but banks also have Islamic accounts that do not allow overdraughts or loans, and so the question of paying interest cannot arise. They also pay no interest on the balance held in the account. Given this, the deeply religious person can avail him or herself of the Islamic account and can decide to not borrow money elsewhere.

    Though the argument continues, and Derek still hasn’t seen that it’s the message that’s the important thing here, let’s predict what would would have happened if a straight couple, who were friends of the gay couple, went in to order a cake for the gay couple’s wedding. Fairly easy to predict that the straight couple would have been refused,too. This is because it’s the message that the baker didn’t want to write, in the same way that he would refuse a Halloween cake to everyone and no-one would bat an eyelid. The baker has messages he won’t write. We can argue all day about whether the baker is bigoted and whether his beliefs are justified, and get nowhere since beliefs are subject to neither logic nor law.

    In this case, whether the baker was asked by a gay, straight, black, female, disabled, Hispanic, or Outer Mongolian person, he wasn’t going to write that message on a cake. He also wouldn’t have done a Halloween cake for anyone, or pictures of Satan in flagrante delicto. It’s not about who requested the special order, it’s what the order is.

    I agree that the baker was over-zealous, but then there is a large section of society that share those beliefs and (obviously) will agree with the baker. I’d disagree with the baker’s beliefs, yet nonetheless support him in his right to not promulgate a message he refused to produce for whatever reason or for no reason. We’ve covered the point that the baker had sold cakes to the gay couple before, so it’s not a refusal to serve a gay couple. It’s simply a refusal to produce a message against his interpretation of his religion, no matter who it is that is asking.

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    • Simon Derricutt – If the baker doesn’t want to write a message, that’s fine, he can give the customer the icing gun and tell him tor write his own message, even say that he won’t put his name on the product, but refusing the cake outright is not on. The cake is not an intrinsic message. It is not a religious object, and even if it is, it has no place in a secular commercial transaction. The wedding is not a religious wedding and the couple did not order a sacred cake, nor were they even told that Phillips bakes sacred cakes for religious weddings. It’s beyond ridiculous and the only reason the anti-gay bakers are getting this much public support is that it is, well, anti-gay.

      So to get to the nitty gritty, let’s forget all about same-sex weddings for a moment and look at a mixed-race wedding, which like gay weddings are against the deeply held religious belief of a large number of people. There are passages in the Bible that were adduced by opponents of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, and the overturning of the Jim Crow anti-miscegenation laws. It’s barely 50 years since it was illegal for blacks to marry whites. By the identical reasoning through which Phillips is refusing custom cakes for same-sex weddings, he can refuse them for mixed race weddings. If not him, then another baker one day will use this, if Phillips prevails in his appeal. Then it’s open slather. There is literally nothin that a religion somewhere won’t forbid, and by the way, certain religions permit child marriages, and would bake a cake celebrating them.

      Religion can not be allowed to govern public commerce, and the denial of Public Accommodations cannot be based on a person’s private religious belief. If your religious belief does not allow your business to serve all members of the public, then find workarounds so that it can, either by ordering an employee to do it, or outsource the thing you don’t want to do, or find another business to run that doesn’t run foul of anti-discrimination laws. Members of the public should be not expected to wonder what services they’ll be refused because of their race, their gender or their sexual orientation because of this or that religious ideology of the owner of the business they wish to patronise.

      Under the laws of Public Accommodations, businesses must serve everybody. They don’t have to sell every product in existence, but refusal cannot be based on a person’s race, nor on their gender and nor on their sexual orientation in states with LGBT anti-discrimination laws. The idea that the cake is a “message” from Jack Phillips “celebrating gay marriage” is utter bunkum. Heterosexual couples who buy Phillips cakes aren’t told that their cakes are messages “celebrating heterosexual marriage”, nor that they are buying a sacred cake for a religious wedding. These specious justifications were all cooked up when he was trying to figure out how to avoid prosecution.

      Doesn’t it bother you that the only “sin” all these so-called “Christian” bakers are interested in preventing is same-sex relationships between gay people? Their hypocrisy is as shameless as it is egregious. Jesus never spoke against LGBT people nor against same-sex relationships, and nor do the Ten Commandments. But he railed against hypocrisy, and in particular, remarriage after a no-fault divorce, likening it to adultery. Now adultery is a mortal sin in both testamanents, and warrants being burned alive in a lake of scalding sulphuric for trillions of years. Phillips says he refuses orders for divorce parties, yet a divorced couple remarrying someone else have no problem getting their cake baked by Christian bakers. Likewise, Kim Davis, now into her 4th adulterous marriage is bleating about the “sanctity of heterosexual marriage”, GIve me a break!

      The self-righteous sanctimony of evangelical “Christians” is the modern-day equivalent of the Sadducees and Pharisees of Jesus’ time, obsessed with ancient and no longer relevant scriptures at the expense of the humanity of those before them. Their behaviour bears no resemblance to the Christian message I was raised under, nor that of any of my friends or family, most of whom identify as Christian.

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      • Derek – did you read what I wrote or just answer based on what you thought I would be saying? Philips had sold cakes to this gay couple before. He did not refuse to sell them a cake. Having bought a cake, they could then have written on it whatever they wanted. What he refused to do was to design a wedding cake for a gay wedding.

        As regards legality, I suspect he could also refuse to design a cake for a mixed-race wedding, or for a black wedding, providing he didn’t refuse to sell them a cake at all because of the person who asked. That is why I pointed out that if straight friends of the gay couple had asked, they would have been refused too. If a white person ordered a cake for a mixed-race wedding, they may well be refused also.

        I suspect that the baker is not only worried about gay weddings. He would probably also refuse to design a cake for a paedophilic wedding, or in fact anything you might possibly celebrate with a cake that was against his religion as he sees it. That doesn’t depend on who is asking him to do it, but what is the thing he is being asked to use his artistry on. People who want the things he doesn’t supply must buy a set of icing pens.

        You say Kim Davis has an adulterous marriage. In law, she doesn’t. That is your interpretation based on your reading of what her religion should mean. Obviously she would disagree with you.

        Did I mention that religion doesn’t have to be logical?

        Given the percentage of people who have one religion or another, it’s a necessity to allow for a religious refusal to do certain things. It’s also necessary to allow for cultural preferences. Last time I was in India I saw a couple of male soldiers, fully armed with machine guns, walking hand-in-hand. Not gay at all, I think, but simply the culture there.

        You have had a lot of people here try to show you why it’s important to keep Free Speech and freedom of expression. It seems you still think that the issue is because it was a gay couple who asked for a wedding cake. This isn’t the case. No-one would have been supplied (by that baker) with a cake to celebrate a gay wedding. The baker didn’t refuse them because they were gay, but because he didn’t do those cakes. There would be other cakes he wouldn’t supply to anyone, either. If he won’t supply them, he’s lost a customer to someone that will supply them. That other baker could advertise “cakes for gay weddings”, and get more customers. Even better, as Willis said, is the “design your own” service, where you can even get Satan licking a dildo if you want. Normal free market action.

        The amount of times you quote the Bible here implies you regard yourself as Christian. That should be irrelevant to this discussion. How you interpret that book is obviously not what the baker thinks it means, and it’s his interpretation that is relevant. You may think it clearly says one thing, he may think it clearly says another. It doesn’t have to be logical, it’s just what is. Choose a supplier that will supply what you want.

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          • You keep referring to religion but religion is just a source upon which ethics and morality is based. I don’t need religion to tell me not to kill someone or what are moral actions. There are other ethics that can be used to make those decisions also and they may reach the same conclusions that are based on religious teachings or not.

            Derek let me ask you this in all seriousness. I would like to know. If a person makes a living in a creative field it is most likely a service of some sort. This would not only include artisans like a baker, metal smith, or photographer but artists like painters, writers, and even actors. At what point does the right of these people Not to create something that they disagree with exist? Must they do anything that someone wants to hire them to do even if it conflicts with their morals. Would a painter be required to paint a nude portrait for a nudist? Would a writer of heterosexual romance novels be required to write a gay romance novel? Is there a line you draw between artisans and artists? Does one have the ability to refuse service and the other not? Do you apply the same reasoning to political beliefs or can an owner demand that a customer leave their establish because they disagree with their politics? I’m trying not to be argumentative but I’m trying determine whether there are limits to what people can be forced to do in terms of selling their services in your opinion.

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          • given that in the US people are being denied service is restaurants because they work in the White House or are wearing a Trump baseball cap, and in California we are seeing people refuse to sell their house to people who voted for Trump these are very relevant questions

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          • Bear – I already covered this in earlier answers, but here is the list again:
            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Public_accommodations

            Public accommodations are public and private facilities used by the public, such as retail stores, rental and service establishments, educational institutions, recreational facilities, and service centers. Public accommodations may not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, or national origin. Religious organizations and private clubs are specifically exempted. Some states, like Colorado have expanded the categories to include sexual orientation, usually with a religious exemption for churches.

            Thus, Public Accommodations laws don’t cover artistic pursuits like painting, sculpture, literature and music. No artist can be pressured to create something they don’t want to create, and in none of your example would there be any grounds, legal or otherwise, to force an artist to create any of the different types of work you mention. Artists get to pick and choose, so do religions, and so do private clubs.

            The baker can only nominally be called an “artist”, since his works of art are devoured within 24 hours of their creation, although there is clearly artistry of a kind involved. He is likewise not a church or a private club, so he cannot claim a religious exemption to allow him to deny public accommodation to gay couples. His best bet is to outsource that which violates his religious beliefs, or to order a subordinate to do it, otherwise provide the means for customers to do it themselves. He could also consider moving his business to a Bible Belt state where gay people are completely unprotected, and then he could refuse to serve them at all, even off the shelf cakes. Considering he believes his cakes are sacred and that all weddings are religious, he might be happier there. After all that is what everyone is telling gay people to do.

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          • David Lang

            given that in the US people are being denied service is restaurants because they work in the White House or are wearing a Trump baseball cap, and in California we are seeing people refuse to sell their house to people who voted for Trump these are very relevant questions

            Unless amended by state legislation, such refusals are likely to be lawful, because they don’t breach Federal Public Accommodations laws.

            Interesting article on the subject here:
            https://www.gq.com/story/maga-hat-lawsuit-new-york

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          • Derek > The baker can only nominally be called an “artist”, since his works of art are devoured within 24 hours of their creation, although there is clearly artistry of a kind involved.

            This is commonly true (although, in a surprising number of cases the cakes are not eaten), but by the same token you could argue that flyers that are handed out don’t require the same effort and skill as a novel. That’s not what the requirement is. The requirement for copyright is creativity, not durability of the result.

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          • David Lang – If he wins the “artist” argument, the baker could then move to the next step of calling ALL his creations works of art, after all he built them for weddings. I have gone to many art exhibitions, and I never once saw a cake on display, other than a painting of one. I never saw a wedding cake at an art auction, going to the highest bidder, and there’d be no interest, unless perhaps it were Miss Havisham’s.

            This is a commercial marketplace, and I shouldn’t have to go from store to store, hunting for a place that will serve gay people, when straight people don’t have to go from door to door hunting for people who will serve straight people.

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          • > If he wins the “artist” argument, the baker could then move to the next step of calling ALL his creations works of art, after all he built them for weddings.

            no, not everything a baker does is creative and art.

            the “is it in an art gallery/auction” test includes things like “piss christ”, well below what a high end cake is in terms of creativity.

            There are auctions for high end cakes where they sell for thousands of dollars.

            This is why I say that one bright line for forcing people to do something is when they would get copyright on it. The run-of-the-mill goods would not qualify, but the type of custom cakes that we are talking about here would (and no, a plain cake with a message on it probably does not qualify for copyright)

            Like

          • Derek – you’ve missed answering the salient point, so I’ll repeat it:
            “In this case, whether the baker was asked by a gay, straight, black, female, disabled, Hispanic, or Outer Mongolian person, he wasn’t going to write that message on a cake. He also wouldn’t have done a Halloween cake for anyone, or pictures of Satan in flagrante delicto. It’s not about who requested the special order, it’s what the order is. ”

            As noted, too, when asked by a straight person to bake the cake for the gay wedding, he refused. Whether you like it or not, he doesn’t make them, so it doesn’t matter who asks. He doesn’t want to be involved in any way with a gay wedding. That won’t stop the wedding, and it won’t stop the gay couple getting a cake, they simply needed to find another supplier.

            You said “Simpn Derrocitt – How can a gay couple have a straight wedding?”. This seems to be a total non-sequitur. The answer is “Mu!”.

            Like

          • Derek, thanks for the response. You’ve defined what the law says and I assume your position is the same or do you hold to a more inclusive standard in regards to artistic pursuits? I would appreciate some clarifications if you’d be kind enough to provide them.

            I do disagree on the following:

            “The baker can only nominally be called an “artist”, since his works of art are devoured within 24 hours of their creation, although there is clearly artistry of a kind involved.”

            While you may consider impermanence to deny it being art the museums and art critics as well as the National Endowment for the Arts disagree. Many art project are temporary or even designed to last only a given length of time. For example, Cristo’s works. And I’m sure there are food related art that is even eaten as part of the art exhibit.

            Now you can argue that the cake the baker made has as it’s primary purpose to be food and not art but it’s arguable that a wedding cake is primarily food ;^

            I should have looked this up myself, but thank you for providing the definition of “public accommodation”:

            “Public accommodations are public and private facilities used by the public, such as retail stores, rental and service establishments, educational institutions, recreational facilities, and service centers.”

            And you also stated that it didn’t apply to artists, but I see a gray area and that is where there exists a facility. So a free lance photographer who sold his pictures or even took commissions would be considered an artist? But one who had a studio would not because there is a facility involved? Same true for a portrait painter? In another case a theater owner who rented his establishment out would a public accommodation under the law. But let’s say he did not want certain plays to be produced in his theater that he morally objected to. Themes such as nudity, incest, ect. A gay theater group comes to him and wants to rent the theater to put on “Boys in the Band” or “Angels in America”. The owner say you can put on other plays but I won’t allow anyone to perform those plays here because of their content. Would he be in violation of the law? In this case the owner is objecting to the content and not the people renting the hall.

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      • > If the baker doesn’t want to write a message, that’s fine, he can give the customer the icing gun and tell him tor write his own message,

        umm, you just don’t get the concept of the custom cake. It’s not just a standard cake with a message written on it. Custom cakes are all sorts of interesting shapes. The whole cake is the artistry, not just a little bit of icing on the top.

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        • David Lang, well the Colorado Court ruled otherwise. Phillips’ win at SCOTUS wasn’t on the merits of the case, but on the fact his religious beliefs were disrespected. We haven’t heard the last of this case.

          Like

      • Derek said: “Religion can not be allowed to govern public commerce,…”

        Unfortunately for you, the 7-2 decision does exactly that, and was the right decision, when two “protected classes” have competing rights. What you’re advocating for is the removal of “the religious” as a protected class. Good luck with that, given religion’s place in the Constitution. (For the record, I’m Agnostic, and thus really don’t care about this, but I’m open-minded enough, and rational enough to connect the dots.)

        What you’re going to have to argue is that religion is learned, and gayness is as inherent to a person as is race. You’re going to have argue that religion (ie, the religious among us) should not be a protected class. Sexual orientation and gender are changeable things, thus learned things, based on feelings, experience, maturity. I’d argue that religion is as well, and thus forms the difficult gray area in which we found ourselves.

        Every fervent religious person believes they were born religious, even though they have entire procedures and catechisms that “teach them how to behave” and conditions of “entry” into the group.

        Every fervent gay person believes they were born gay, even though some don’t “figure it out” until much later, or some experience convinces them. Some believe one thing (hetero) for many years, only to change to something else later (bi, gay).

        Every fervent transgender person believes they are [x], whatever it is for them, but they actually have free reign to choose at the drop of the hat what they *WANT* to be, or *FEEL* to be at that instant.

        No amount of experience, education or medical processes can change our race.

        On to the public contract called “marriage.” This is a state-sponsored legal contract between two people. It means nothing beyond that. It doesn’t guarantee that everyone has to be happy about it. Same deal for abortion. As I’m sure you’re aware, a Christian Hospital will not perform an abortion, even though the government says abortion is super cool. IN the left’s moral equivalency world, I’m sure they’d love to force Christian doctors to perform abortions unconditionally, and Christian bakers to sell cakes unconditionally, “for the greater good,” of course.

        Not going to happen, as long as two protected classes have competing interests.

        I just wish the left would boil it down, to this simple message: “We don’t believe religion should be a protected class, and here are the reasons why: [list of reasons, including why/how the Constitution will have to change]”

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  18. Derek Williams just refuses to understand the issue, which is, as Willis and almost everyone else emphasizes, THE MESSAGE. Under our Constitution, no one can compel an artist to create something which violates his religious beliefs!!!!!

    Derek Williams has also falsely accused the cake maker of refusing to sell the gay couple a cake. Derek – he offered to sell them a cake but not the message!!!! That is his right in the USA!!!!

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    • Chad Jessup – Whether the cake is custom designed or not, if it’s baked by Phillips, it can still be construed to be a “message” from his bakery. This is a stepping stone to EVERYTHING being a “message”, and thus opening the door for refusal of service on the grounds of race, gender AND religious belief. Does a baker have the right to refuse service to mixed-race couples because he thinks their marriages are sinful? Does he have the right to refuse a marriage between a Jew and Gentile?

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      • > Whether the cake is custom designed or not, if it’s baked by Phillips, it can still be construed to be a “message” from his bakery.

        Except that’s not what the case was about. Phillips was willing to sell them anything in the store (including cakes), he was just not willing to accept a commission to create a custom cake.

        you don’t seem to accept that such a custom cake is not just ‘write down the order, bake it, frost it, write some text on the top’ taking just a few hours of total time (with only a few minutes spent on “the message”

        custom cakes (especially wedding cakes) tend to involve lots of interviews with the purchaser, a bunch of taste tests of different cake flavors, lots of discussion on cake design, and only then starting on the final cake. This is a process of days of effort (spread over weeks to months), before the final cake is even started. That is why they can run into thousands of dollars.

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    • Personally, I don’t buy that pre-pubescent children have any idea who they are going to be attracted to after puberty, and I think it’s criminal to allow permanent changes to take place (for example transgender surgery), let alone encourage it.

      But I will also say that the fact that there are bullies in school (and there are bullies who pick on just about everyone at that age), and a kid committed suicide has absolutely nothing to do with the topic we are discussing.

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    • Derek Williams August 28, 2018 at 7:23 pm

      Spare a thought for this little one: https://www.advocate.com/youth/2018/8/27/after-coming-out-and-being-bullied-9-year-old-dies-suicide

      My thought for that little one is that kids too young to decide their own bedtime should be spared any and all pressure to come to any long-term conclusion about their own pre-pubescent sexuality.

      If it were my kid, I’d have said, “Fine. If I were you I wouldn’t mention it to anyone, because it might change as your body grows and changes. Come and talk to me about it after puberty, I love you, and I will love you either way you decide.”

      I would NOT make the stupid mistakes the mother made, first of going along unquestioningly with what may have only been a passing whim (or not), and then advising him to submit himself to the inevitable stares and remarks at school. His blood is on her hands.

      It is also on your hands, for pushing the idea that children who are far, far too young to legally do many things, and who are even too young to decide what to wear, where to go, and when is an appropriate bedtime, are nonetheless old enough to decide they want to change gender. That blood is on you, Derek …

      Finally, I despise this kind of “argument by feeling sorry”, particularly when someone brings in children. Your link doesn’t have one damn thing to do with your argument in the baker’s case. It is a pathetic and underhanded attempt to gin up sympathy for your cause, and as such it has absolutely no place in this discussion. Stick to Colorado, there’s a good fellow, we have plenty to discuss without emotional pleas.

      w.

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    • 9 years old is still the age of “cooties” and “no grls allowed” clubhouses (think Calvin of Calvin and Hobbs)

      If any 9 year old boys do feel sexual attraction to girls, there is something wrong.

      the fact that there is a segment of society that pushes the concept that if you aren’t attracted to the opposite sex, you must be gay is shameful, and the fact that there are kids who then take normal indifference to the opposite sex to mean that they must be gay is an understandable tragedy

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  19. Dereck, August 27, 2018 at 6:05 am (i.e. a million messages before now)
    “Phillips is refusing to provide a custom wedding cake because the couple are gay”.

    Derek, why do you need to lie and insist so badly on an idea that had been demonstrated wrong to you already several times before you wrote it (again)? And then keep pushing on it for the following million messages? My god Willis, how patient you are with these people.

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    • Like I said, Nylo, I write for the lurkers, those whose minds are open. I can be patient with Derek, because his mind is set in stone … and it’s easy to be patient with stones because you don’t expect them to change.

      w.

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      • “I can be patient with Derek, because his mind is set in stone”

        Your blog your rules, but you chastised me for what I thought was basically the same thing you said here. I accepted your mild rebuked and I think it actually made me think more carefully about how I phrased my comments which improved the discourse, but I’d just like to know what you objected to so I don’t make the same mistake. Was it something about my tone or words that I used?

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        • Bear, you listed a bunch of stuff that was very negative about Derek.

          I merely said that his mind is made up and it appears nothing will change it. I don’t see that as a negative, it’s just a fact that I have to live around. Which is why, as I’ve said, I write for the lurkers. There are many among them who have not made up their minds.

          Best regards, thanks for your many contributions to this post,

          w.

          Liked by 1 person

          • Willis – I expect that if Philips the Baker happened to comment here, we’d find his attitudes were similarly set in stone and unable to be changed. On such things civilisation can break down, where each side thinks they are absolutely right and can’t see any reason to compromise.

            A long time ago, a friend of mine got married to the daughter of a judge in Northern Ireland. The people were great, and we had a good time, but the taxi had to take a different route across town because a bomb had gone off. The grievances there went back several centuries, but were still kept alive. Not too long ago, people finally decided to try to compromise and live together in peace, but it will still take a few generations before those old grievances really get forgotten. It seems old attitudes really only die off because the people who hold them die off, and then only if they die without passing them on.

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          • > It seems old attitudes really only die off because the people who hold them die off, and then only if they die without passing them on.

            Which makes this sort of lawfare even more pointless. You are not going to change people’s opinions by sueing them, and so you are snatching defeat from the jaws of victory with cases like this.

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          • Simon Derricutt August 29, 2018 at 11:54 am

            It seems old attitudes really only die off because the people who hold them die off, and then only if they die without passing them on.

            I couldn’t disagree more. When I was in high school it was still illegal in some states for white people to marry black people … the changes in the US population’s views of races and their relationship has been nothing but astounding. From it being illegal to marry to having a black President in one lifetime, that is some serious progress.

            w.

            Liked by 1 person

          • Willis – you said
            “I couldn’t disagree more. When I was in high school it was still illegal in some states for white people to marry black people … the changes in the US population’s views of races and their relationship has been nothing but astounding. From it being illegal to marry to having a black President in one lifetime, that is some serious progress.”

            As far as I understand, there are holdouts for the old attitudes, and the KKK are still active. I think it will take a few generations more before the colour of someone’s skin stops being important. To me, the fact that it’s emphasised that Obama is black and that peoples’ colour is often reported says there’s still a problem. Once this is no longer regarded as something remarkable, then I’ll concede that there has really been an advance. Much the same with equality for women, really. In technologically advanced nations, discrimination on gender wastes half the brainpower, so it’s fairly obvious that promotion based on aptitude will be far more productive than basing decisions on someone’s gender, sexuality, colour, etc..

            In the UK, where racial problems seem to me to be a bit less serious than in the USA, there is a Black Policemen’s Federation. Some people obviously think that’s a good thing, but I see it as a way of separating people and as treating people as different based on their ethnic background. I’d also point out that if an organisation called itself a White Policemen’s Federation, and didn’t allow Blacks to join it, that would be seen as racially prejudiced.

            Maybe look again at similar situations in the USA, where there are certain organisations only open to Blacks (or to people who identify as Black, even though they may look almost White). Given that we’re all mixed-race by any reasonable definition, and that going back the odd 1000 years ago we likely all have common ancestors, the whole Race problem seems a little crazy to me. Culture is way more important.

            Liked by 1 person

  20. Why didn’t they just bake them a really crappy cake or pass the job on to another baker? Totally self inflicted. Deserve all they get.

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    • baking them a bad cake is worse than refusing, by refusing he gives them a chance to get a good cake elsewhere (and does’t open himself up to lawsuits for ruining their wedding).It’s also not an ethical thing to do, so hardly the act of someone standing on ethics.

      this is a tiny shop, there aren’t other master bakers working in the shop. By refusing to do the work he WAS passing them off to another baker, just one working at a different shop.

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  21. A man with 3 legs goes into a tailor in London and asks them to make him a pair of trousers (or would that be a triplet of trousers?). The tailor says “I’m sorry, sir, we don’t make those. But I know a tailor in Sellafield who does.” Should the 3-legged man sue the tailor for refusing the order, or go visit Sellafield? (For the people here not from the UK, Sellafield is the site of an early-model nuclear power station, and they weren’t that careful in handling the waste.)

    As Nylo points out at https://rosebyanyothernameblog.wordpress.com/2018/08/26/a-plea-to-my-many-gay-etc-relatives-in-laws-and-outlaws/comment-page-1/#comment-8842 , a wedding cake for a gay wedding was not going to be supplied by that shop no matter who asked for it. It’s thus not a matter of who asked for it, but what was asked for. That simple point is the core of the matter. This is the point Derek still refuses to acknowledge.

    If someone wants me to make something special, that I don’t usually make, I am at liberty to refuse without needing to state my reasons. Again, that should be an inalienable right, and the government or whoever should not be able to force me to do that special service. There may however be extenuating circumstances in which some such forced service must be acceptable, for example for something like National Service where the country is under threat or actually at war, and people in that case may have the choice of accepting that or leaving the protection of that country. The reasoning here is that all the people in that State can either accept both the protection and the need to protect others, or can go somewhere else, but cannot accept the protection from others and refuse to help in that protection.

    There are differences in the Free Speech laws in the USA and the UK. In the UK and Europe we now have the “hate speech” laws that restrict what people can say both in private and in public (private messages, if made public by a third party, still open someone to prosecution). It seems “hate speech” is anything anyone gets offended by, which is a pretty wide net since I can’t predict what is likely to offend someone I don’t know well.

    Though, as Derek noted, there are still some restrictions on Free Speech, such as not shouting “Fire!” in a crowded theatre, most legal opinions are based on what the reasonable person would do or regard as reasonable. In this case, I would think it unreasonable to ask some religious person to do a special service that is against what that person sees as reasonable. I may disagree with what that person thinks is reasonable, but if that person is part of a group who think the same, then I need to accept that as what is.

    Anyone looking for life to be absolutely fair is going to be disappointed. It isn’t fair. The conditions of your birth, the talents, predispositions, and disabilities you start with and develop, and the people you interact with, are all subject to chance. You can’t legislate equality. When you’re dealing with deep-seated cultural prejudices, it stands to sense that it will take a long time to change them, maybe centuries, and there will be places that hold to old ideas long after the majority have changed.

    Back to where we started…. If someone won’t supply what you want, for any reason or for no reason, then you have the option to either get it from someone else or to do it yourself. Using lawfare to force someone or to bankrupt them means everyone loses (except the lawyers). Somebody will need to pay the ~$500 per hour to the lawyers.

    Mind you, I suppose that the price per cake of ~$1000 or so, you could think the baker would be rich and could afford that. I would never pay that much for a cake anyway. There’s maybe something else wrong when the newly-married couple can’t afford to get a house because of the debt incurred to celebrate the wedding…. Still, that’s another subject altogether.

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    • The US state, federal government lawyers or personal lawyers would step in if more than one member of a protected class (or possibly only one) was denied service and claim discrimination regardless of whether or not the owner stated his reason for denial. Even if the owner actually did it because of some other reason (I’m too busy, I don’t like your attitude) they would still wind up facing a suit that could bankrupt them.

      Then there’s the whole concept of Hate crimes. Some are obvious such as putting a burning cross on a Black families front lawn, but in some cases the government will charge that in situations where there is no overt action that would be evidence, but the person committing the crime does it agains someone of a protected class under the law.

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  22. Derek Williams August 28, 2018 at 1:16 pm

    The baker can only nominally be called an “artist”, since his works of art are devoured within 24 hours of their creation, although there is clearly artistry of a kind involved.

    As a musician who never plays written music, and who dislikes being recorded because live performance is where for me my artistry and my gift resides, you can stuff your ludicrous childish judgment of who is and isn’t an artist up where the total solar irradiance is zero …

    I am an artist regardless of the fact that my musical creations disappear immediately, and you are a self-righteous prig and a philistine for claiming otherwise.

    You need to start observing the first rule of holes, Derek, because about one time in three my opinion of you tends to sink when you uncap your electronic pen … the first rule of holes is, when you find yourself in a hole … stop digging …

    w.

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  23. OK Willis I am a lurker on your blog, as well as WUWT. This repartee with Derek is an affirmation why I choose not to engage with, as you put it, someone whose mind is set in stone. You bring logic and common sense to the discussion.. and after reading the back and forth logic is met with talking points and often false logic.. sounds good but misses the point.. So if it’s about freedom of speech then anyone is free to say or not say whatever they please.. if it is about providing food, shelter, or life saving services then those in need regardless of race, religion, creed, nationality, sexuality, etc. must be afforded those services regardless. Your point is MESSAGE.. got it.. Makes sense to me.. So if Derek or others who support his position can’t stay on topic and keep their rebuttal to that very specific point.. I must move on.. your point is clear, concise, and addresses one’s creative and speech freedom.. to end; this is my only message to Derek and others who support his view.. they might do well to embrace what Voltaire said “I may disapprove of what you say but I defend your right to say it”. Or in this case not to say it..

    Liked by 1 person

  24. RE: Derek Williams August 27, 2018 at 4:21 pm
    “Willis – you said “you’ll realize that it is about the MESSAGE, and not about race, religion, sex etc” So my question is, “what is the message”?”

    So Derek are you saying, “The medium is the message?”

    Marshall McLuhan defined ‘medium’ as “any extension of ourselves.” I’m not sure ‘cake’ could be included as an extension of oneself but then again perhaps artistic expression (and bakers are true artists!) can be seen as an extension of oneself . . .

    Quote: “Thus we have the meaning of “the medium is the message:” We can know the nature and characteristics of anything we conceive or create (medium) by virtue of the changes – often unnoticed and non-obvious changes – that they effect (message.) McLuhan warns us that we are often distracted by the content of a medium (which, in almost all cases, is another distinct medium in itself.) He writes, “it is only too typical that the “content” of any medium blinds us to the character of the medium.” . . .”

    The rest of the article quoted above is here:
    http://individual.utoronto.ca/markfederman/article_mediumisthemessage.htm

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  25. Derek I have chosen against my better judgement to jump in… I have read a number, not all, of your posts.. you have made a number of comments about freedom from religion.. I will use this quote as one example:

    “That also guarantees freedom FROM religion. In a commercial setting, I should not be refused service because of religion. If you were right, then Catholic checkout operators could refuse to swipe condoms through the scanner, ditto for Muslims with pork, beer and wine, and ditto for Hindus with beef, so we’ll end up with a supermarket with an aisle for each religion.”

    In a different case regarding this issue of freedom from religion; how do you square the mixed government response to Somali cab drivers refusing to carry passengers with pork, or alcohol.. and some who refuse to carry blind passengers with guide dogs due to their religion.. also in Target stores in Minneapolis, Somali clerks aren’t required to check out customers buying pork.. so far the response has been mixed from sending the cabbies to the end of the cab line at the airport to short term suspensions.. in Targets case the clerks were reassigned to other areas..

    A little different treatment of the baker who was told to either provide the service or don’t provide service to any weddings.. The Somali’s were accommodated for their religious beliefs, and I could go into many more examples where accommodations were made for their religious beliefs based on freedom of religion grounds where it provided hardship for others and if they wanted the services of the Muslim employee or business they had to go elseerhere to get the service or accommodate the employee..

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    • Art – I have replied to this type of question several times already as follows: If you are opposed to prostitution, don’t apply for a job in a brothel.

      Why would you apply for a job doing something that you are ideologically opposed to?

      If the job you are applying for requires you to take dogs in a taxi, and you are religiously opposed to taking dogs in a taxi, then why apply for a job where you are required to take dogs in a taxi?

      Taxis are an example of Public Accommodations.

      Dancing around the plethora of religious beliefs, many conflicting with each other, such as on the equality of women, is on a hiding to nothing.

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  26. Derek this is your reply. to the below message

    “Ben PA – I have answered this in response to another of your posts, re the baker having the right to refuse to custom design a cake for an interracial wedding because he disagrees with miscegenation and doesn’t want to celebrate it, or for a wedding where both spouses are black, and as a Syriac Christian he believes their skin colour is caused by the Curse of Cain, and therefore doesn’t want to celebrate it, or if the two spouse are not of the same religion, and he doesn’t want to celebrate it. For the rest, please look at my other response.”

    Short answer is Yes. I know based on your ridiculous /sarc spelling of colour that you are clearly not of the states and seem to misunderstand basic elements of freedom our constitution and positive versus negative rights.

    Unless you remove the first amendment a bed and breakfast will always have the right to refuse accommodation to anyone a private renter can refuse tenants a baker can refuse customers. These are not public accommodations as you do not have a right to rent a room in somebodies house. You are not entitled to an apartment in a privately owned building. You do not have the right for a cake made by a specific baker.

    All non private entities are bound by the equal opportunity acts so the local Hilton can not deny you a room. The grocery store can not deny you a display case cake. Public accommodation does not extend into custom orders nor does it extend into a private residence.

    If you want to rent out a spare room you can stipulate no trump supporters. Or even demand college degrees and transcripts. It is a private arrangement made willingly between 2 parties. The key word being willingly either party can choose to not participate.

    When NYC tried to limit what criteria private landlords could look at thousands simply took their properties off the market.

    The bakers, and florists we have seen make the news have never refused business to anyone based on who they are the public accommodation is the goods on display for ready made purchase. In fact in both of the major cases the people involved have done custom work for the very clients who ended up suing them. They were happy to do business with gay people with one exception they would not participate in a wedding they did not agree with.

    This has nothing to do with religion and your focus on it is a red herring. I suspect it comes from your confusion of british law and the US constitution.

    Have a nice day.

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    • I do find it interesting that this comment has not had a single response. It’s almost like the conversation must be based on vague comments to continue and this one is rather direct in it’s assertion of where public accommodation ends and where the constitution resides.

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      • Ben PA – Both sides of this debate are using the term “thin end of the wedge” or “Slippery Slope”. The only factor distinguishing a mixed-race wedding from a same-race wedding is race. Let’s say the baker doesn’t believe in marriage between people of different race. He will therefore refuse all his custom services to mixed-race couples. Same goes for printers, photographers, florists, hotels and the like. The one and only distinguishing factor in this analogy, is race, and it’s not far-fetched since there’s still a widespread prejudice against miscegenation.

        The baker in our example may even put up a sign saying, “Custom baking services are provided to same-race marriages only”. It doesn’t matter whether this is likely or not, since likeliness is not the issue at hand. We shouldn’t be favouring one kind of bigotry over another, merely because one is more likely than another.

        Now to the respective thin ends of the respective wedges:

        On the one side, some (the majority on this thread) are saying custom services should be able to be refused for any reason, or no reason, on the grounds of freedom of speech. They argue that once you prevent the baker from refusing mixed race couples his custom baking services, the next thing we will be subject to thought police.

        On the other side I am saying once you can refuse a service on the grounds of race, gender, sexual orientation, you can refuse it to anybody for any reason, and then we may as well not had the Civil Rights Act, and the Jim Crow laws would still stand. I am standing by my claim that the above example is refusal on the grounds of race, because there is no other distinguishing feature. The baker would bake his custom cake for a same-race couple, but refuse it to a mixed-race couple.

        I am using the race example, since while everyone accepts that race is not a chosen attribute, there are people who think gay people are just heterosexuals who decide to be gay, and thus if they only decided to be attracted to females, and marry one, then they’d get their cake.

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        • Derek you say.

          “Both sides of this debate are using the term “thin end of the wedge” or “Slippery Slope”. The only factor distinguishing a mixed-race wedding from a same-race wedding is race. Let’s say the baker doesn’t believe in marriage between people of different race. He will therefore refuse all his custom services to mixed-race couples. Same goes for printers, photographers, florists, hotels and the like. The one and only distinguishing factor in this analogy, is race, and it’s not far-fetched since there’s still a widespread prejudice against miscegenation.”

          The difference is what we think the result of these actions should be.

          If a baker refused to make mix raced custom wedding cakes because he did not want to support marriage that he saw as some violation…. Maybe he is African and believes the white man should go extinct as a global minority already after all that is actually a common belief.

          I personally would expect public outcry and boycotting to be called for he may or may not go out of business depending on his customer base and how much they are offended by the behavior.

          In other words I would expect the people who actually patronize his business to determine what level of punishment is justified. Kinda like Freedom?

          You on the other hand want him to be brought into court at gunpoint and given the choice to either rescind beliefs that you feel are “wrong” and bake the cake again at gun point or loose his business or go to jail.

          Keep in mind that if you ignore a court order eventually men with guns come and drag you away that is the force part of this equation. You are literally arguing for armed men to enforce your opinion about what people should do.

          Again the problem with Jim Crow laws wasn’t that they allowed discrimination it was that they mandated it via government force. A man with a Gun would have come and forced you to make your restroom white only etc.

          The Government (big G) can not discriminate or enact laws that are discriminatory. This has nothing to do with private individuals, companies or organizations. Your lack of understanding of the United States is causing this entire conversation. I don’t blame you roughly 90% of Americans don’t understand either.

          As an example of another similarly misunderstood concept. This is Just like “separation of church and state” doesn’t appear anywhere in our governmental documents codes or laws. It was merely a Quote which is actually used in reverse of the context it was said meaning the intent was to keep the government out of the church not vice versa. Nobody seems to know this either. The government can’t establish an official religion or effect the free exercise thereof it doesn’t say anything else. Allowing people to pray in school etc. is not establishing a religion even if I find it irritating. The government has no right to ban it. (although that hasn’t stopped it as with many other things it has no right to do)

          Why would you ever want a cake from somebody who is only making it for fear of force to be used to celebrate the next chapter of your life? Isn’t that sort of twisted? Would you trust them to not do vile things to your cake? Do we need more laws about that and more force?

          I was solidly with the cause until this vindictive authoritarian phase started.

          Like

  27. Simon Derricutt August 30, 2018 at 12:44 am

    As far as I understand, there are holdouts for the old attitudes, and the KKK are still active. I think it will take a few generations more before the colour of someone’s skin stops being important. To me, the fact that it’s emphasised that Obama is black and that peoples’ colour is often reported says there’s still a problem. Once this is no longer regarded as something remarkable, then I’ll concede that there has really been an advance.

    All of that is true, and there are still racial problems in the US. However, the changes in my lifetime have been astounding. Back then, I lived in a society where it was perfectly legal (and generally unremarked in much of the US) to have “White Only” swimming pools, schools, drinking fountains, and restaurants.

    To go from that to the present situation in one lifetime is a huge accomplishment, one which I am very proud of.

    Yes, there is a lot more to do … but that should not blind us to the amount that has been done.

    Regards.

    w.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Willis – I spent a while as a failure Analyst, so I do tend to concentrate on the things that aren’t quite right rather than what works just fine. I do see that a lot in the USA has improved, but there’s still some way to go before the colour of someone’s skin becomes totally unimportant and unremarkable. Not harping on your age, but you’ve seen 3-4 generations, and though the States managed it remarkably quickly I still think it’ll need another few lifetimes before all the old attitudes have gone.

      I grew up in an all-white town in the UK, and didn’t ever see anyone non-English until a black guy came to give a talk in my school on racial problems. My dad was pretty prejudiced, though, and so that was something I absorbed through not knowing any different. Later on, working in mixed environments, I saw that the prejudices were simply wrong. As such, I didn’t pass them on to my daughter. I suspect that’s the only way prejudices die, by being seen as wrong and thus not passed down the generations. If we make people laugh at those prejudices (for example Alf Garnett) then though we can’t change what the real Alf Garnetts think, it can be driven underground and not passed on.

      On the topic here, there are now enough gay comedians and gays in public life that it’s becoming unremarkable, and the attitudes against gays maybe won’t get passed to the upcoming generations. The various religions will of course fight a rearguard action on this, but then they do seem to have fewer people year on year. Sir Elton John (a married gay knight) maybe carries a fair amount of opinions with him. I still expect Derek will find people that won’t serve him if he goes searching, though, or places where it is dangerous to walk alone. On the other hand, you might still find it dangerous to walk alone in Harlem. Some things take a long time to change, and I don’t expect that either of us will see the problems fully go away.

      Liked by 1 person

      • personally, I don’t see how we are ever going to get to the point where the color of someone’s skin doesn’t matter as long as we are giving preferences to people based on their skin color, are requiring businesses to produce reports on how many people of each skin color they hire, and have people attacking businesses on the bases that they aren’t hiring enough of a given skin color.

        Liked by 1 person

        • David Lang – Wholeheartedly agreed, but there needed to be that interim period of Affirmative Action, otherwise people of colour would never have gotten on to the ladder. There was too much entrenched discrimination. In an ideal world, all these weightings should be removed, but as I said in another post, “the price of freedom is eternal vigilance”.

          Nowadays on job applications, government and quasi-government institutions also ask these questions on ethnicity, as well as questions about sexual orientation and religion, in order to compile data on the demographic size and job choices of minorities. Of course it can be misleading for LGBT individuals who may choose to lie on the form, or refuse to answer in order to avoid perceived or real discrimination.

          Like

        • David – yep, I agree with that point. Trying to mandate equal treatment by quotas of specific ethnicities/types is still discrimination, with the added problem of maybe not having the right person in the job or simply not enough of the right people in the catchment. Let’s say they mandate that 51% of the pre-school child-carers must be female and 49% male, to match the relative numbers of women and men and thus keep things equal. They might have a problem getting enough applications, but of course they could always decide to force people to do that job….

          I also see Derek’s point here, that positive discrimination might be useful in order to start the ball rolling. However, I recall that the police forces in the UK have been trying to comply with the quotas required, and don’t get enough applications from some ethnic groups. Some UK Labour party constituencies state baldly that men need not apply since they won’t be chosen, too. Adverts for actors for the play “Hamilton” said no white actors need apply, too. Things get complex, with discrimination being rife one way or another.

          One of the things I’d like to show is that you can’t solve one injustice to one perceived group of people by an equal and opposite injustice to another perceived group of people. If some bean-counter decides I’m in a certain group, am I guilty by association of any crimes done in the past by people perceived as in the same group as I am? Until we can get past that tendency to use groups as a shortcut for decisions on people, we’ll be stuck with discrimination that may be open or hidden, but still there.

          Like

          • I see, to my horror, that this is indeed happening:

            The primary intention in setting up Affirmative Action was to mitigate centuries of prejudice and discrimination. Thus, where two applicants of equal merit were being considered, and there was a tie, consideration would than pass to other attributes, such as socio-economic disadvantage. A candidate from a background of wealth and privilege would more likely prevail, whereas the underdog might need a leg up, if you’ll forgive the mixed metaphor. Note, EQUAL merit. The example in the above video shows that a candidate with a lower score prevailed over candidates with higher scores. This is a perversion of the spirit of Affirmative Action, whose intention was never to give an advantage to a candidate of lesser merit. The two candidates had to be of equal merit before Affirmative Action kicked in.

            It is unfortunate that such abuse of the process will likely lead to its demise, although ideally it should amortize over time anyway, concomitant with prejudice.

            Like

          • Unfortunantly, cases of equal merit almost never happen.

            AA advocates keep trying to mandate X% of people must be.. and the courts keep shooting them down as quota systems are plain illegal.

            so the AA advocates then change the rules so that people from ‘disadvantaged backgrounds’ get ‘bonus points’ (or in the case of Asians, they are penalized points, even compared to Whites)

            The end result is that Obama’s daughters are considered ‘disadvantaged’ compared to a Holocaust survivor or a dirt poor white boy from the deep hills of Appalachia.

            One point that I found jarring in the Black Panther movie was when the bad guy went off on “trow me into the ocean like my ancestors threw themselves from the decks of the slave ships”

            1. anyone who throws themselves into the oceans from the deck of a slave ship isn’t going to be the ancestor of anyone.

            2. at least half his ancestors were the royal family of wakanda, living in luxury and technology beyond the rest of the world.

            claiming that ALL black people are in need of more help than ANY white people and driving it to extreme levels is turning people who support equality against AA, and they are being accused of being Nazis for pointing out flaws.

            Like

  28. Derek Williams August 30, 2018 at 5:36 am Edit

    Simon Derricutt – Notice how in this blog, gay weddings are only ever inflammatorily compared with the most unsavoury of requests, like swastikas, KKK messages and dildos on cakes?

    gay wedding or a voodoo ceremony or an all black orgy or a white supremacist rally

    Oh, please, stop trying to play the victim card. We’re comparing something Jack Phillips does NOT want to make a special cake for with something that you yourself might NOT want to paint a sign for or participate in. OF COURSE those will be “unsavory requests”, that’s the point! You would not want your name associated with them.

    Jack Phillips says he sells off-the-shelf cakes to couples whose weddings he disagrees with, but what if another baker wouldn’t even go that far and refused those as well?

    Then we wouldn’t be having this discussion about the other baker.

    Moreover, the selling of a non-custom cake could arguably be interpreted as “approval” since it still has the baker’s business name on it, and when he bakes the non-custom cakes, he must know that one day a gay couple, a black couple, or a mixed-race couple, or an atheist couple are likely to come in to his store and buy it. By selling it to them with his business brand name on it, by dint of your argument, he is ‘celebrating’ a union he doesn’t agree with. Everyone who goes to the gay/black/interracial/interdenomination wedding could see his association with it.

    That’s as nonsensical as saying that if I make and sell an off-the-shelf hammer and someone kills someone with it, it “could arguably be interpreted as “approval” since it still has the hammer maker’s business name on it” … sorry, but that dog won’t hunt.

    You didn’t specifically address my point about a Syriac Christian baker refusing to bake a custom cake for black couples because he believes in the Curse of Cain, or interracial couples because he disagrees with miscegentation, or Muslim bakers potentially refusing to bake cakes for weddings between Muslims and non-Muslims.

    You still don’t get it. It is NOT about religion or sex. It is about the freedom of a sign painter to NOT paint a sign for a black guy that says “Murder All White People”, even when just like you, the black guy is trying to claim it is about race.

    It’s not about race, it’s about the message on the sign! It’s not about race, it’s not about religion, it’s not about sex, it’s not about teh gay, and no, Derek, it’s not about you.

    It’s about the message.

    Remember, these are public stores, open to the public, with no signage saying that LGBT, Blacks, Jews, Muslims, Asians, Arabs, or [insert disliked minority] will be refused service if they ask for a custom cake.

    Bottom line? Any man has the right to refuse to make a custom object that creates, carries, or supports another man’s message. You can’t force a sign painter to paint a sign that says “The KKK Should Have Killed Them All!”. And no, we don’t need to put up a sign to that effect, since every decent man or woman has signs that they would refuse to paint, INCLUDING YOU … and they have that absolute right.

    I sincerely hope that someday you see that using the mighty power of the law to force a recalcitrant gay sign-painter to paint a sign saying “Kill All The Queers, They Are A Sickness” would be tyranny … but according to your statements to date, that is exactly what we should do.

    w.

    PS—Your argument that if the baker makes a custom cake for one he has to make it for all is nonsense. It’s as foolish as saying “Well, you painted a sign supporting a gay event, so now you have to paint my sign saying “Kill the Queers!””. Doesn’t work that way.

    You seem to misunderstand the word “custom”. A custom object is one-of-a-kind, so no, the baker has NEVER made the same cake for a straight couple as you claim. They got their own very different cake, that’s what custom means.

    Like

    • I disagree with this part of Derek’s:
      People should be able to buy whatever they want, wherever they want, irrespective of their immutable innate characteristics of gender, race or sexual orientation.
      Better say “whatever is for sale, wherever it is for sale”.

      Like

  29. The problem with the left is that it believes that we can get to heaven on earth using politics and government.

    But politics is division, and government is force.

    The whole point of social animals is to reduce the incidence of force.

    Like

  30. The trouble with positive discrimination and the aggressive stating of positions (and I am afraid that I find Mr Williams repeated assertions aggressive as well as tedious) is that it fails completely to win over hearts and minds. The application of the law in these circumstances causes people to take care of what they say and who they say it to, but it doesn’t change the underlying belief and builds a head of resentment. These are new oppressed, who, unlike the politically correct cohort, are not permitted to give voice to their concerns.

    Like

  31. RE: Willis
    “Finally, all of us are here in part to learn, including Derek. What we learn from others depends in part on how others treat us …”

    My Dad once told me if I didn’t learn something from everyone I met, I wasn’t paying attention.

    Liked by 1 person

  32. Now this has been a very interesting education. I have learned (from Derek) that just about all of my vegetarian friends are bigots, and the vegetarian restaurant owners I know are probably guilty of any number of discrimination laws. One vegetarian is a vegetarian because he is convinced that it is a healthy lifestyle for all of humanity, not just him. I guess he is a bigot. Another is a vegetarian for religious reasons. Clearly a bigot. Another runs a vegetarian catering service because he is convinced that this is both healthy for humanity (whom he loves and cares for) as well as good for the earth. Another–and she is the worst–is a vegetarian because she is convinced that the meat industry harms animals. Who knew all of us were surrounded by so much bigotry. Perhaps messieurs Cuomo and Schumer, along with the supportive ninth circuit, will figure out a way to pass and uphold laws that outlaw this kind of hateful bigotry. But perhaps not …

    Like

    • TG Brown – No the vegetarian restaurant owners are not bigots and I never said nor even implied any of the things you attributed to me, nor do I even think them. That’s one of the worst examples of strawman I’ve seen. I believe everyone should receive equal service, regardless of race, gender or sexual orientation, or religious belief for that matter, and now somehow that paints me as someone who accuses vegetarian restaurants of bigotry. Say what?

      Being vegetarian is a choice. Being gay is not, but if it were a choice, no-one would make such a choice, since society is geared towards heterosexuality and it is an easy life to be straight, since no-one will refuse you employment, accommodation, healthcare, insurance, inheritance, friendship, or cakes, just because you’re heterosexual. If you’re gay, there are 76 countries in the world that will lock you up, and in 10 of those you will be executed by your own government, just for forming a relationship with another gay person.

      Your analogy is absurd.

      Like

      • Derek Williams August 31, 2018 at 10:41 am

        Being vegetarian is a choice. Being gay is not, but if it were a choice, no-one would make such a choice, since society is geared towards heterosexuality and it is an easy life to be straight, since no-one will refuse you employment, accommodation, healthcare, insurance, inheritance, friendship, or cakes, just because you’re heterosexual.

        Derek, I told you this already but I guess you didn’t get it the first time. Likely my lack of clarity.

        My mom, after four husbands, at the age of 60 decided that she was gay and went and lived with a woman for about four years. She never lived with a man again. So yes, sometimes being gay IS a choice, and sometimes it is not. I discussed it with her. I can tell you she never complained about the sixty years that she was not gay, she enjoyed men until she changed her mind. So your claim is simply not true, humans are not as uniform and predictable as you claim.

        However, being religious is certainly a choice, and despite that, religion is a “protected class”. Seems like every group is a protected class these days except for old white men, anyone can diss us without penalty … go figure. See my post Melanin-Deficient Males Of A Certain Age.

        From my perspective, the sticking point for you is if a man sells a custom cake to someone else’s particular specifications, you think he should be forced, not have the option but be forced, to make a custom cake to your particular specifications. Remember that the baker was happy to sell the gay guys anything off the shelf, they were customers of his.

        So far, not one person has chimed in to agree with you that artist should be forced to create things to your specifications. … and that is despite the fact that a number of them, like myself, are strong supporters of equal rights for gays.

        What you don’t get is that we all have an equal right to have our SUGGESTIONS that someone build a special something for us turned down. If I went to the Colorado baker, identified myself as being straight, and said I wanted an obscene wedding cake, the baker would assuredly turn me down … AS IS HIS RIGHT. A custom baker making culinary works of art doesn’t have to create to order, not to my orders, not to your orders, not to anyone’s orders.

        My best regards to you, and thank you for hanging in despite the occasional personal attack.

        w.

        Like

        • Willis – Could you “decide” to make your penis go hard for a man, fall in love with him, sleep with him, kiss him passionately for hours on end, hold hands in public, share your secrets, and spend the rest of your life with him, to the exclusion of all others? If you can decide to do that, then you’re literally the first heterosexual I’ve ever spoken to who wasn’t utterly repelled by the very idea. And if you’re NOT repelled by the very idea, then perhaps you’re not as straight as you think you are.

          I don’t know anyone who can “decide” to like anything! Liking something is Nature’s response, outwith your control, other than to act upon your likes and dislikes. I hate turnip. I hate oysters, They literally make me barf. Try as I might, I cannot for the life of me “decide” I like turnip, nor can I decide that I like oysters. And to be honest, why should I be pressured by others to “decide” to like things in the first place, when the very people bringing the pressure don’t allow anyone to tell THEM what or whom to like or dislike?

          I am sure all the gay people in those 76 countries I mentioned where it’s an imprisonable offence to form a relationship with the same sex would love to be able just to ‘decide’ to like the opposite sex and bring to an end their lives of persecution.

          Looking at the animal kingdom, over 1,500 species exhibit homosexual behaviour. I don’t see them “deciding” after weighing up the pros and cons.

          In your mother’s case, she may be bisexual, or she may have masked her feelings in conformity with societal expectations of the day. But I don’t know anyone who can manufacture sexual and romantic feelings for another person out of thin air by making a ‘decision’.

          Like

          • Thanks, Derek. I said nothing about myself, so I have no clue why you are speculating about me. Regarding my mom, all I can do is report what she said and did. She certainly looked on her actions as being the result of her free will.

            Regards,

            w.

            Like

          • OK Willis, here’s a challenge I throw down to people who tell me it’s a choice to be gay, and by logical deduction, a choice not to be gay. SO this means you can switch back and forth safely between being gay and not being gay.

            To try this out, be gay for, say, a day, and then change yourself back to straight the following day. On the day you’re gay, you will be passionately attracted to men, both sexually and romantically, and entirely disinterested in women. No matter how beautiful they are, they will do nothing for you. Then, on the next day, when you switch back to being straight, your feelings for men will disappear and your feelings for women will return. All you did was choose to be gay for 24 hours, and it’s risk free because you can choose to be straight again the following day.

            I would be very interested to hear how you get on during your day of being 100% gay.

            Like

          • Derek Williams August 31, 2018 at 6:08 pm

            OK Willis, here’s a challenge I throw down to people who tell me it’s a choice to be gay, and by logical deduction, a choice not to be gay. SO this means you can switch back and forth safely between being gay and not being gay.

            Thanks, Derek, but I don’t know who you think said that “you can switch back and forth”. I told a true story about my mom. It has nothing to do with me, it was her story. Period. I made no overarching claims.

            So please, quote the exact words of whoever you think said that you can switch back and forth. I didn’t say that nor did I read it, but I may have missed it.

            w.

            Like

        • Willis: “My mom, after four husbands, at the age of 60 decided that she was gay and went and lived with a woman for about four years. She never lived with a man again. So yes, sometimes being gay IS a choice, and sometimes it is not.”

          If we use ‘gay’ for men and ‘lesbian’ for women, this would make more sense.
          When Derek says gay is not a choice I believe him, as long as he is not talking about women.
          To make it even more confusing, there is ‘bisexual’ and an ever expanding alphabet of sexual identities, some of which must be by choice. As a result, the “no choice” argument is not a very good one to use.
          Not to mention that some researchers think nobody is 100% one or the other. Maybe after they cure cancer they will figure this out. Meanwhile, you have to write the laws so that it doesn’t matter.

          Like

          • Nylo and Willis – You are confusing ‘choice’ with ‘orientation’. A gay person can choose to capitulate to societal pressure to be straight, by marrying someone of the opposite sex as a “trophy”. Does that mean they feel sexual and romantic attraction to the person they marry? If that were possible, then society could decide who should marry whom, if you can simply make a decision to like whomever is put in front of you.

            So far as I know, since I am not a woman, and can’t know for certain how a woman might actually feel, no human being can make a decision to like something. If that were so, then no-one would eat unhealthy foods because you could simply decide to like only healthy food and dislike unhealthy food. You could show us a list of things to like and order us to like them.

            ‘Liking’ is an instinctive response, that we can suppress, try to ignore, lie about, or yield to. As I already said further up the thread, I cannot decide on the spot to like turnip or oysters, both of which foods I find nauseating. If women are able to decide to have a sexual and romantic attraction to someone, then that is news to me, but if that is true, then why are there any lesbian relationships at all? Women could simply decide to like whatever random man society instructed them to and aviod all the prejudice.

            You could also ask yourself whether you could look at a random stranger of either sex and make the decision to feel sexual and romantic attraction to them. And you could consider why there are divorces, since the couples involved could simpy make the decision to keep on being sexually and romantically attracted to each other.

            Like

          • See, this 4 paragraphs of circular non-logic is all you got. You can not force your leftist stupidity on people who refuse to accept it, only on those gullible enough to believe your lies. Guess what, sweety? Americans have had enough of your lies, even millennials see through your crap. So please, PLEASE, keep spewing it as loudly as possible. In America you have freedom of speech, and we have the freedom to laugh at you, heap derision on you, marginalize you and in the end simply ignore you. Gonna enjoy watching you come unraveled in public, its going to be fun!

            Like

  33. RE: Derek
    “I would be very interested to hear how you get on during your day of being 100% gay.”

    Well, I’m guessing for a start, he’d dress better and even his socks would match everything else he was wearing. Like most old hetero’s like me, who usually dress in the dark (and often just looks that way) ‘close enough’ is how we match socks, with no thought whatever about how they work with the other stuff. I’m also guessing the suspenders are gone . . . and the day begins. Someone else can take it from here.

    Liked by 1 person

  34. Derek – though you’ve tried to divert the discussion into how gays are discriminated against, and have been through a lot of history, you have avoided facing up to the problem that we should not be able to legally force people to support things that they have a moral objection to, whether or not we agree that those moral objections are valid.

    For most people here, there’s support for you that discrimination is bad, though you are starting to lose a few through wanting to impose your ideals on others. You are conflating the legal requirement for non-discrimination on supply of goods with the ideal that people should not refuse any reasonable request based on what the event is that is being celebrated.

    I think we’re agreed that the baker was bigoted in not supplying a cake for a gay wedding simply because he didn’t like the idea of gays getting married. The wedding was legal, and he wasn’t being asked to do something illegal. However, he was within his rights to refuse to spend his time doing a service for anyone for any reason whatsoever. He could not refuse to sell them a cake from the shelf, but he could refuse to make a special one for them. He regards the cake as the message, and thus refused to make a special one, but they could nevertheless have bought a cake from him and had done so in the past. It wasn’t who asked, either, since the (straight) mum of one asked (and was refused) the following day.

    As Willis has said several times already, it was the message that was the sticking-point. Not who asked. The baker did not want to help celebrate something he didn’t agree with. If we allow this right to be eroded for the baker, then it will also be eroded for the rest of us. If we can legally force the baker to go against his principles, then we can force anyone else to go against theirs.

    Of course, various governments do try to control what their people are allowed to think. We call them repressive or totalitarian. Anyone in North Korea who has the impudence to imply that leader Kim is anything less than an ideal person tends to not be heard of again. The person convicted of wrong-think becomes an unperson. Bankrupting the baker is the thin end of the wedge.

    Like

  35. Derek Williams September 4, 2018 at 12:55 am

    TDBraun At the very least, bakers, photographers, printers, florists, hotels and other businesses involved in the provision of services for weddings should have a sign outside their stores saying which disliked minorities they refuse services to, e.g. “we do not provide custom services to Blacks, Jews, LGBT, Asians, divorcees, mixed-race couples, couples of different religions. Please do not ask, as a refusal may offend.”

    Derek, you’re still not getting it. Let me try again. Let me use a Halloween cake as my example, because there, the issues are not as clouded with personal beliefs.

    The Colorado baker also refuses to make cakes for Halloween, because he feels it is a heathen celebration of dark forces whose message he strongly disagrees with.

    Please note that it doesn’t matter to him if the person asking for the Halloween cake is Black, Jewish, LGBT, Asian, divorced, mixed-race couple, or a couple of different religions.

    Why doesn’t it matter?

    Because, as I’ve explained more than twice, the issue is not the CUSTOMER, it is the MESSAGE. He won’t make a Halloween cake for ANYONE!

    You keep wanting to say something like “It’s all about me and my peeps ‘cuz I’m gay!”

    But it’s not about you, and it’s not about gay. It’s about the right of any artist to refuse any special commission from anyone. So if your baker doesn’t want to make Halloween cakes, FIND ANOTHER FARKING BAKER!!

    Me, I have the same problem in reverse. I’m a cartoonist, and I refuse to be told, not just what I have to draw, but what I can’t draw. So when the Muslims started the Cartoon Wars and forbade every cartoonist on the planet from drawing Mohammed, I had to go and draw Mohammed cartoons. The cartoons are at the end of the article here, y’all might enjoy them.

    Telling me what I cannot draw is the same as telling the Colorado baker what he has to draw, and both are tyranny.

    Best regards, Derek, and my thanks for hanging in. I do love to see a person standing up and defending their beliefs, whether I agree with them or not.

    w.

    Like

  36. Derek said:

    So far as I know, since I am not a woman, and can’t know for certain how a woman might actually feel, no human being can make a decision to like something. If that were so, then no-one would eat unhealthy foods because you could simply decide to like only healthy food and dislike unhealthy food. You could show us a list of things to like and order us to like them.

    ‘Liking’ is an instinctive response, that we can suppress, try to ignore, lie about, or yield to. As I already said further up the thread, I cannot decide on the spot to like turnip or oysters, both of which foods I find nauseating.

    When I was a kid and I didn’t like something, my mom said “Try it, maybe you’ll learn to like it.” And as she predicted, I’ve learned to like many things in my life that I disliked on first exposure to them. In the same way, when my daughter was younger she really hated garlic. She refused to eat it all the time she lived at home. Now, as an adult, she loves cooking with garlic and eating garlicky food.

    So perhaps on your planet people are born disliking oysters and can’t learn to change it. On my planet, I can learn to like things. Go figure.

    Finally, whether or not you can learn to like sex of some particular kind is immaterial to the Colorado baker. He refused to make the same cake for the mother of one of the men involved. For the baker, it’s not about the customer. The mother is not gay. Is he prejudiced against women for telling a woman he won’t make such a custom cake? No. It’s not about the person doing the ordering. It’s about the message.

    It is about the right of any artist anywhere to refuse any custom order and not have to justify it to you or any other tyrant large or small. So no, I won’t draw my cartoons to your specs. Freedom of speech includes freedom to not speak.

    My best to you,

    w.

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    • Willis – if people could simply “learn to like” the opposite sex, then there’d be no gay people. I know many heterosexuals, and have done throughout my life, including my entire family (I am the only gay in my family), and I can swear hand-on-heart that not one of them had to be coached into liking the opposite sex. In every case, they were responding to an innate, overwhelmingly strong, biologically programmed desire to mate with the opposite sex. Animals don’t have to have classes in how to like the opposite sex.

      Familiarisation with certain foods can indeed over time develop a liking for them, and that includes alcohol, but that comes with maturity. When I was a child, I didn’t like whisky, nor any alcoholic beverages. Children are more sensitive to extreme tastes. And there’s no doubt that people like your mother can discover their bisexuality or homosexuality later in life, but in none of these cases did people make a decision to like something on the spot. Something they previously disliked, they now like. But that’s an orientation change, it’s not a choice made after weighing up the pros and cons, like buying a fashionable pair of shoes, or living near the beach. It’s a discovery, not a choice. The only choice in the matter is whom you pair up with, in response to your orientation.

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      • Derek Williams September 4, 2018 at 9:41 am

        Willis – if people could simply “learn to like” the opposite sex, then there’d be no gay people.

        AAARGH! This is not the point. It is not near the point. It is not in the same universe as the point.

        THE BAKERS OBJECTION IS NOT ABOUT BEING GAY! IT’S NOT ABOUT WHETHER BEING GAY IS A CHOICE OR LEARNED BEHAVIOR! IT IS NOT ABOUT SEX AT ALL!

        It is about the message, and his right to refuse to make a special custom cake for any reason, or for no reason at all.

        It is about my right as a cartoonist to say no, Derek, there are things that I will not draw a cartoon about. Doesn’t matter who is asking for it. Not gonna happen. I only draw what I choose to draw. Sure, at times I’ve drawn what others have requested … but that doesn’t mean I have to draw what anyone requests. Freedom of speech means freedom to not be forced to speak on someone else’s behalf.

        It is about the message. It has nothing at all to do with the race, religion, or sexual orientation of the customer. It is about making a special, custom object. You can hire the artist. But you can’t force the artist to say what you want them to say.

        w.

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        • Willis – I know it’s not “the point”, and I only raised it because you mentioned that according to your mother, being lesbian was a choice, not an orientation. In other words, she decided to “become a lesbian”.

          I know it’s got nothing to do with the subject of the blog, but once you raised it, I had to respond to that point separately.

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          • Thanks, Derek. I did NOT say that according to my mother, being lesbian was a choice. Neither she nor I said that, which is why I ask people to quote my exact words.

            My mother said, as I reported, that FOR HER it was a choice. Neither she nor I said anything about anyone else. I’d say for some it is and for some, it is not a choice. Did you ever hear the term “gay for the stay”? It’s how some people describe their sexuality when they are thrown in jail for a long time with no one but the same sex.

            But for others such as yourself, you’re born that way, and I respect that. Me, I really don’t care. On my list of questions, why gay people are gay is down below why hippos are oversized.

            I say gay people should be able to do anything that the rest of us do, not more, not less. And the “not more” includes not being able to force an artist to fulfill your personal fantasy.

            w.

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          • Derek Williams September 4, 2018 at 4:31 pm

            Willis – Why is it that if I want to get married, it’s ridiculed as “my fantasy” and not to be respected?

            Nobody said it was “not to be respected”. All I said was that an artist is under no obligation to fulfill my personal fantasy, your personal fantasy, or anyone’s personal fantasy. I did not ridicule anything.

            You need to turn down the sensitivity on your personal insultometer. Nobody said what you are claiming, much less me.

            w.

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          • Willis, I never hear people dismissing a straight couple’s lifelong commitment to each other through the solemnity of theirvows of marriage as “your personal fantasy”. It’s making light of something of great mutual significance to those involved. “Your personal fantasy” is a putdown.

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          • Derek Williams September 4, 2018 at 5:09 pm

            Willis, I never hear people dismissing a straight couple’s lifelong commitment to each other through the solemnity of their vows of marriage as “your personal fantasy”. It’s making light of something of great mutual significance to those involved. “Your personal fantasy” is a putdown.

            If you never have heard people discussing their “fantasy wedding”, then you really should get out more. We were talking about the Colorado baker, and guess what? Forcing the artist to create “your personal fantasy” in that context means your personal fantasy CAKE! Once again I gotta say, it’s not about you.

            Truly, my friend, several times in this discussion, you have taken offense when I intended none. I was not dissing, minimizing, putting down, or making light of gay weddings. Not happening, that’s not me.

            Look, I get it that you are on a hair-trigger for perceived insults. Likely reasonable given history.

            But I’m not that guy. I’m the guy who supports gay people being treated the same as anyone. I’m the guy that’s on your side. I’m the guy that sees you trying to drive the bus over the cliff regarding the Colorado baker and says “Hit the brakes! You’re damaging your own cause!”

            I say damaging your own cause because nobody likes a bully … so consider how most people are gonna feel about a gay bully.

            Not a good look when you are trying to demonstrate that you’re like anyone else.

            I say again, find another farkin’ baker! A Christian couple doesn’t go to a Muslim baker and ask for a cake celebrating Jesus whupping Muhammad. They’ll get turned down, and rightly so. And if they sue the Muslim baker, shame on them.

            Instead of suing the Muslim baker when they get turned down, I’d say to them what I say to you:

            Be a good neighbor and find another farkin’ baker, OK?

            In friendship,

            w.

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          • Willis – A fantasy is something unattainable, figment of a person’s imagination, “in your dreams” they say of something you can never achieve, so it’s snide when it’s used only against LGBT people to say their weddings aren’t real, and are only a fantasy. People never diss straight weddings as the exercise of mere fantasy.

            Your offensive examples of Jesus whipping Mohammed, the KKK, swastikas are all false equivalence, since none of these are being refused because of the race, the gender or the sexual orientation of the people ordering them. Phillips on the other hand IS refusing his custom services because of the sexual orientation of the people commissioning them. He will bake a custom cake for a straight couple’s wedding but refuses it for a gay couple’s wedding. That’s straight-out discrimination. There is only one distinction between the two, and that is the sexual orientation of the customers.

            Phillips says he will sell a bog-standard cake to a gay couple, but later on, if he wins against them at SCOTUS, then he will thereafter be able to claim his standard cakes are also sacred and he will refuse them to gay couples, because they’re being baked for weddings, in advance, and he already stated that all weddings are religious in his eyes. When he bakes his standard cakes, he can argue that they carry the same “message” as the custom cakes, endorsement of the ceremony they’re being purchased for. There’s nothing to stop him refusing his standard cakes using the exact same logic as for the custom cakes, as ALL being “works of art”. If not Phillips, then another baker, or florist, or printer.

            Gay couples he considers unworthy of his premium service, because of what they are, or what he believes they choose to be. It’s absurd to argue that he refuses ‘gay cakes’ for straight weddings. No straight couple is going to order a gay cake for their wedding, since they’re not having a gay wedding. Likewise, a gay couple cannot ask for a custom cake for their straight wedding since they can’t have a straight wedding. It IS about them, and the only “message” is: “you’re unworthy”.

            Once SCOTUS declares it legal to refuse goods and services to gay people in Colorado, the exact same legal arguments can be used to refused to Blacks coming to have a custom cake built, if it is against the baker’s religion to serve black people. The eventual outcome of this will be signs going back up saying, “No Jews, Blacks, Poles, Irish, Italians, Catholics or Gays, etc.”, concomitant with the abolition of the Public Accommodations Act, and you may as well repeal the CIvil Rights Act while you’re about it.

            Sure, this is doing damage to the LGBT cause, just as forcing a Whites Only school to enrol Ruby Bridges caused massive backlash against African Americans. People used the same argument you’re using, “If a whites only school won’t enrol you, find another school”.
            http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2413509/Civil-rights-icon-Ruby-Bridges-thanks-US-Marshal-protected-attend-white-school-1960.html

            I can only hope that the damage will be as short-lived for us as it was for 6 year old Ruby.

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          • Derek,
            when it’s used only against LGBT people to say their weddings aren’t real

            Here you are being mentally obtuse on purpose, aren’t you?

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  37. It used to be that when a man and a woman lived together without getting married, it was called “living in sin”. These days it’s run-of-the-mill and not remarked upon. It’s a lifestyle choice. Similarly, a gay couple could live together without benefit of marriage, and still can if they wish. Such living together without official recognition has some downsides as regards tax, pensions, and inheritance, but otherwise has no effect on the relationship itself.

    Getting married is a legal process. No cake needed. The religious ceremony leads to a legal recognition most of the time (not all religions are legally recognised as having the standing), but the legal process is actually all that is needed. Having a party afterwards and inviting people to have food, drink (and cake) is basically inviting everyone involved to celebrate that legal process having been completed. Anyone who disagrees with that wedding, for any reason (say because the two people are of different races, or because they are gay, or any of a large number of reasons) should not be forced to join in the celebration. In the same way, no-one should be forced to join in and celebrate at a Halloween party, a divorce party, or any number of other things that they disagree with for any reason or for no reason.

    What Derek still doesn’t get is that he’s wanting people to be forced to celebrate things they disagree with. Of course, that may be where the EU is headed by taking small steps as regards “hate speech” which is so undefined as to cover anything any judge thinks it is. This will erode the fabric of society, as has the fear of being labelled as racist. In Rotherham and Oxford, groups of Asian men were not prosecuted by the police for grooming young white girls because of the fear of being labelled as racist. Trying to be inclusive and forgiving has its downsides, too. Laws that were meant to protect a minority can be interpreted to give that minority the freedom to oppress. A couple of months ago an immigrant in Finland was acquitted of the rape of a young girl because it wasn’t a crime in his culture. Often it seems the human rights of the criminal are regarded as more important than those of the victim, and I’m sure others here have noted this tendency.

    Around 45 years ago, I was invited to go out “gay bashing” for the evening. I declined. Should I have been forced to, even though I disagreed with it? Maybe that example will make Derek realise that people shouldn’t be forced to do things against their convictions.

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    • Incidentally, I read today that 60% of the children born in France in 2017 were born out of wedlock. That may indicate the degree to which straight couples care about getting married. As such, I wonder what the fuss is about anyway with gay marriage. It seems simply a case of “normal people can do that, so we want to do it too to show people we are normal”. The legal system has allowed for partnerships for a very long time (and the “divorce” from a business partnership is harder than divorce from a marriage) so the legal benefits of marriage have been available to everyone regardless of sexuality (or asexuality, as it happens). Luckily, though there was clamour to make church weddings for gays an absolute right (and thus pissing off the priests who would have to do it against their wills) it’s simply allowed if the priest wants to do it. Since there are gay bishops and clergy (and unfortunately probably too many paedophile ones as well) then it’s not too difficult for gays to find a church that will marry them.

      Rather than worry about what baker you go to for the cake, should it be law that all religious organisations that are allowed to marry people must marry gays if they ask? I’ve got a feeling that Derek would answer “yes, of course, because to do otherwise is discrimination”. Still, he can answer that himself…. Personally, I think that no reason is needed to refuse to do some special service. If no-one will supply that special service, then you either do without it or learn to do it yourself. Then, of course, if there are others that want that same service and can’t find anyone to supply it, you’ve got a new way of earning a living.

      I wouldn’t suggest a new career in making cakes for gay weddings, though. Too much competition.

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      • Derek what Simon says here is more pertinent than he may know.

        “Anyone who disagrees with that wedding, for any reason (say because the two people are of different races, or because they are gay, or any of a large number of reasons) should not be forced to join in the celebration. In the same way, no-one should be forced to join in and celebrate at a Halloween party, a divorce party, or any number of other things that they disagree with for any reason or for no reason.”

        Phillips has always refused even his most loyal customers custom requests for Divorce cakes as he does not see divorce as something to be celebrated. He will not bake a divorce cake for anyone.

        Should I be able to force him to bake me a divorce cake?

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        • Ben PA – I’ve been trying to boil it down so that Derek can finally see the central point. Looks like none of us has succeeded yet. There’s another wriggle away from the point in his latest answer.

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          • Derek will never see any “point” beyond forcing his leftist, authoritarian ideology on people that do not want it. Stop beating this dead horse, all y’all are doing is covering yourselves with bloody bits while Derek jerks you around in circles and laughs at you.

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        • Ben PA Refusing a divorce cake is not discrimination, because it is not refusal based on the protected classes of race, gender (or sexual orientation in states where this applies). In states where it is legal to refuse goods and services to gay people, which is most of America, Phillips can refuse anything he likes to gay people.

          If, on the other hand, Phillips were to say, “I will bake custom divorce cakes for Whites, but not for Blacks”, then the Black would-be customers have grounds to sue.

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          • This is why we use the KKK as an analogy because when we don’t you simply say it doesn’t matter. This is an example of him refusing to participate in an event he doesn’t want to support. His reason for denying the service is the same as the gay wedding. he doesn’t want to do it period. It isn’t about who asked or why they asked it’s what they asked him to do.

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          • Ben PA – He is not “participating” in the same-sex wedding. The ceremony is held in a registry office, with not a wedding cake, or a pastor for that matter, in sight. However, Phillips has decided all weddings are religious, and that his cakes are sacred. The wedding cake plays no part in the ceremony whatsoever, and is to feed guests at the after party.

            If not wanting to do something is justification for refusing custom services to LGBT people, then the sky’s the limit. How about if I don’t want to pay interest on a loan? I am sure I can find a religion to join that will back me up, after all, it’s in the Bible.

            There are those who believe that God made Africans’ skin colour black as a punishment, because of the Curse of Cain, someone analogous to the Catholic concept of ‘Original Sin’ of Adam and Eve. Should a baker who believes this be able to put up a sign saying “I don’t bake custom cakes for Black couples. Please do not ask, as a refusal may offend”?

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    • Simon Derricutt – Even when same-sex relationships between gay people were illegal, assault was still a crime. So, had you joined your pals on a gay-bashing spree, and been caught, your only defence would have been that it was “only gays” you were bashing. While that may have been considered in mitigation in that zeitgeist, it would still have given you a criminal record, had you been convicted of same.

      I certainy do not want the baker, nor anyone else, to “celebrate” anything. All I expect is that if they’re open to the publicl that they serve the public. If they want to serve only heterosexuals, whites etc, then they can form a club for heterosexual white men, which is entirely legal, and sell them cakes.

      As for forcing religions to perform same-sex marriages, I expect no such thing, notwithstanding my sadness that a religion such as Christianity, founded to express and be motivated primarily by love for all, is instead corrupted by modern-day Pharisees bent on judging others, and sanctimonious, self-righteous preening.

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      • Derek – you’ve missed the point on the gay-bashing. Should I have been forced to go and do it, even though I disagreed?

        Meantime, you’re calling on the baker to celebrate the wedding by baking a special cake for it. That’s much the same as forcing me to do something I disagreed with.

        You should know that there were calls to force the Church of England to perform gay marriages if asked to do so. Luckily that was quashed this time.

        The baker effectively had two parts to his business. One part was to put cakes on the shelves to sell to all and sundry. The other part was to do custom work to celebrate things he agreed should be celebrated. He can legally refuse to do the custom work for things he disagreed with, such as Ben PA’s divorce cake. No matter who asked for a divorce cake, he wouldn’t make it. In the same way, he wouldn’t make a cake specifically for a gay wedding. I doubt if he’d willingly make any of the other cake examples we’ve given here, either. You’d have to force him at the penalty of something nasty, and that’s what shouldn’t be possible either in the UK, the EU, the USA or anywhere – though of course in some countries such coercion is applied.

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        • Simon Derricutt – I think my answer to your question about gay bashing is perfectly clear. The state will NOT compel you to commit a crime! That doesn’t even make sense. The “all and sundry” part of the baker’s business could easily change, once he wins against the gay couple. He can, with legitimacy, argue that ALL his wedding cakes are “custom-built wedding cakes”, because they aren’t generic cakes, even without “congratulations” implicit. With equal legitimacy, he could argue that his bog-standard wedding cakes are also “celebrating” somebody else’s marriage and refuse them on religious grounds.

          Phillips is on the record as saying that all marriages are religious, even when they’re between atheists in a registry office, and that all his cakes are sacred. But this is in a PUBLIC store with no warning given on the outside signage that gay couples (or mixed race couples, or any of the afore-mentioned “sinful unions”) will be refused custom services.

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          • Derek – let’s posit that being gay was illegal at that time, since AFAIK it was. Let’s also say that the State required vigilante action, though in the UK that wasn’t required at that time. Should the State have been able to compel me to do gay-bashing, as was indeed required for the Brown-shirts in Germany some time before? Or the Blackshirts in the UK, somewhat earlier, that went out Jew-bashing without the legal sanction but with a large amount of impunity? Various minorities have been targeted by various States, such as Jews, Gypsies, gays, Uyghurs (in China), Dalits (in India). Choose your discrimination. Someone other than the majority, normally.

            So again you miss the point, maybe through thinking that governments are always good. If it had been legal, but I disagreed with it, should I have been coerced into doing it?

            Philips has the right to refuse custom services to anyone for any reason. The democratic way of dealing with that is for people who dislike his attitudes to simply not go there to buy his products. The central point here is the word “custom”. Things he bakes and puts on the shelves can be bought by anyone for any reason, but if you want his custom work then he has to agree to do it first and he is allowed to refuse. If the gay couple wanting a wedding cake don’t like being refused the custom service, and people avoid buying any item from Philips because of that, then he’ll lose custom.

            In the same way, I can’t be forced to buy from someone whose attitudes I disagree with. If enough people agree with me, then that person naturally goes out of business or at least makes far less profit from it.

            It’s not as if the gays didn’t know the baker’s religiousness. They’d been customers before.

            Boycotts are amazingly powerful. They are also the essence of democracy. You don’t need new laws to make a change, simply have a democratic refusal to deal with the people who you disagree with.

            The name for someone who needs to be coerced to do something they disagree with is a slave. Do you really want a slave society?

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          • Simon Derricutt – You’re essentially disagreeing with the existence of anti-discrimination laws per se. I gather you think these should all be repealed, and rely on things working themselves out through commercial pressure. That’s certainly possible, and I have seen a boycott against Tasmania work in Australia, where I lived for 22 years. However this assumes a majority will support the rights of a disliked minority. Sometimes minorities need a helping hand from the state. For example, African Americans constitute only 14% of the total US population. Should they have 14% of access, or equal access to education, healthcare and public amenities? Should bussing have taken place to assist the integration of Blacks?

            The 14th Amendment, upon which the Windsor and Obergefell cases were successfully argued, is based on the concept of Equal Protection, first promulgated by President John Adams, who warned against the Tyranny of the Majority. Just because a majority believe something, such as the Earth being flat, doesn’t make it so. Bottom line of course is, the majority can always strip disliked minorities of their rights.

            I have also said more than once in this thread, that the gay couple who used the law to prosecute Phillips would have been better off being satisfied with their win at law and refused the payment levied by the court. Now the LGBT community are being accused of mining religious prejudice for personal financial gain. If anything however, this has backfired, because the losers such as Memories Pizza ended up being the winners, with windfall crowdfunding profits from GoFundMe accounts that made so much money, GoFundMe shut them down. No-one on the religious side has been driven into bankruptcy, so far as I know.

            I also don’t think you thought through your assertion that governments forcing people to do things is “slavery”, but if you stand by this, then every country in the world that levies taxes, has compulsory education etc, effectively rules a population of slaves.

            You’re also assuming that all religious people are opposed to same-sex relationships, but in the USA and most of the Western world, the opposite is the case. Regardless of what their holy books are telling them, in practice, most Christians, Jews etc are fine with LGBT people and support same-sex marriage.

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          • Derek – it really seems like you’ve had a lot of training in avoiding the main point of the argument and twisting the fine points to produce a reply that really doesn’t face the problem head-on. That may work in debating societies, but it’s not really a Good Thing in the real world.

            You said “Simon Derricutt – You’re essentially disagreeing with the existence of anti-discrimination laws per se. I gather you think these should all be repealed, and rely on things working themselves out through commercial pressure. ”

            The point we were talking about was whether the baker’s actions were in fact discrimination. Since he wouldn’t supply a cake celebrating a gay wedding to anyone, then he was not discriminating in refusing that custom cake to a gay couple. Yes, we can argue that he had a discriminatory attitude to gay weddings in that he didn’t like them and didn’t want to celebrate them in any way, but the central point is that he didn’t discriminate in this case by refusing to supply something he wouldn’t refuse to other people asking for it. He just didn’t make those sorts of cakes, or Halloween cakes, or any types of cake that he considered against his religion.

            You regard this as discrimination against gays, but I regard it as trying to force the baker to supply something he wouldn’t supply to anyone else. Until you face that particular problem head-on and can see why everyone else here sees this as unwonted coercion, there will be no progression.

            As you say, there are hundreds of religions and a plethora of things that religions proscribe or prescribe. We have to allow for those restrictions in order to be able to all get along. If the local religious proscriptions don’t match what you want to do, then the logical thing is not to go there, since it’s historically obvious that people will do some pretty nasty things in the name of their religion. Things change slowly. Today in the news is that after 150 years or so, gay sex is now legal in India. It may take quite a while before it is acceptable to everyone there, though. It may also be quite a while until I can safely sit in a pavement café in a devout Muslim country drinking alcohol. If I did that at the moment, the likelihood is that I would be jailed. I don’t go there. Sure, we know some Muslims will drink alcohol in private even where it is illegal, but doing that in public remains dangerous for anybody.

            “I also don’t think you thought through your assertion that governments forcing people to do things is “slavery”, but if you stand by this, then every country in the world that levies taxes, has compulsory education etc, effectively rules a population of slaves.”

            Oh yes, I’ve thought through this. It’s a fuzzy line, and some things are needed in order to make a society work. We either accept that or go somewhere else. Nobody likes taxes, but if you want full-time police, justice, soldiers, roads, sewage treatment, schools, and the other things a country needs then someone needs to pay for those things. If you don’t like the way things are, then go somewhere else, and you’ll notice that a large number of Venezuelans are doing just that. Here in Europe, and in the USA, there is nothing stopping you going somewhere where your personal predilections are catered for. You can of course choose to go somewhere where they are against the local custom/religion, but you should be aware that in that case you’ll have difficulties and will face opposition. Your choice. You can martyr yourself to make things “better” for those that follow if you want. Personally, I’ll go where I’m welcome.

            Still, the central point is whether the baker discriminated against the gay couple. This is the point you need to think about rather than simply saying that of course he did because he didn’t supply what they wanted. He wouldn’t supply that particular service to anyone, and therefore he was not discriminating against the gay couple. You’ve been given a lot of examples of situations where *someone* tries to order something that the shopkeeper doesn’t supply and is refused because that item is not supplied to anyone. This particular baker should not be forced to supply something he doesn’t want to make. There are other bakers who will supply those cakes, though.

            Choose battles wisely. As you have said, this one is a Pyrrhic victory, and has likely set back attitudes to gays in general by the odd few decades because most people see it as lawfare rather than setting right a wrong. Unless you can see why the majority will back the baker’s rights to his attitudes even though they don’t like them, then this is likely to happen again and produce another setback in the general attitude to gays.

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  38. Derek you said
    “Gay couples he considers unworthy of his premium service, because of what they are, or what he believes they choose to be. It’s absurd to argue that he refuses ‘gay cakes’ for straight weddings. No straight couple is going to order a gay cake for their wedding, since they’re not having a gay wedding. Likewise, a gay couple cannot ask for a custom cake for their straight wedding since they can’t have a straight wedding. It IS about them, and the only “message” is: “you’re unworthy”.”

    Again this is an outright fabrication. He has made custom cakes for gay people. Coming out cakes Graduation cakes any kind of Gay cake you may want. He will not make a cake for a same sex wedding. he does not approve of the term marriage being used to describe the union of man and man. That is not discrimination that is artistic licence. he is not refusing them because of who they are he is refusing them because of the context of the event they are ordering the cake for.

    If the local Clans man comes in and orders a custom graduation cake for his kid no problem. If he wants 30 dozen custom cupcakes with hoods and sugar burning crosses for the rally he can go pound sand.

    Is that denying him service because of who he is or because of what he wants the custom work for?

    Are you intentionally missing this point?

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    • Ben PA I already addressed this point, Once the Supreme Court grants him the right to refuse custom cakes to gay couples, he can then, with legitimacy, claim all his cakes, even the off-the-shelf cakes are “custom cakes”, sacred in essence, because he considers marriage a religious celebration, regardless of whether it is performed in a church or in a registry office. He said as much already.

      He will be able, with legitimacy, to argue that when he bakes his off-the-shelf cakes, he knows the uses to which they’re going to be put, and if that use is at any time, a same-sex wedding, then he should be able to refuse. Every wedding cake Phillips bakes could be construed to be a “custom cake”, even if not for a particular couple, because its intended function is solely for a wedding. Obviously he won’t say this until hje wins against the gay couple, but once his win cements his right to discriminate against gay people, the floodgates are open for all other kinds of discrimination, so long as they are for deeply-held religious belief.

      By the way, it hasn’t gone unnoticed that every time someone on this blog makes an analogy with a gay wedding, it’s always with KKK, Nazis, swastikas, and terrorists. That’s the level you see us at, with our temerity to have weddings. A message on our cake is routinely analogised to the worst depths of depravity to which humanity has sunk.

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      • No you obtuse man. I just used an African who wanted white people to go extinct. The point is to use things that people disagree with as an analogy. That doesn’t mean we view gays as equal to the example.

        When making an analogy you set a term that everyone can agree with and then draw the parallel to try to illuminate the point that a party to the discussion is not acknowledging. You use something that people “should” find repulsive to illustrate that people CAN have a legitimate reason to do X Y or Z and then discuss where the lines between forbidden (illegal) mandatory (coerced by force) and the width of the grey area in between called freedom.

        The cake doesn’t even have a freaking message on it. Its about participating in a celebration of something he chooses not to associate himself with.

        Now I will address this.

        “He will be able, with legitimacy, to argue that when he bakes his off-the-shelf cakes, he knows the uses to which they’re going to be put, and if that use is at any time, a same-sex wedding, then he should be able to refuse. Every wedding cake Phillips bakes could be construed to be a “custom cake”, even if not for a particular couple, because its intended function is solely for a wedding. Obviously he won’t say this until hje wins against the gay couple, but once his win cements his right to discriminate against gay people, the floodgates are open for all other kinds of discrimination, so long as they are for deeply-held religious belief.”

        It HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH RELIGION. He can refuse to accept money and business from everyone. I imagine that is not a successful business model, but it is his option.

        As has been pointed out the community would very likely abandon his business and he would be bankrupt with out you looking like an ass by using government force to accomplish it if he were to go so far. As would happen to every other company that was so prejudiced. Additionally every not hateful competitor would simply advertise that they aren’t assholes.

        Lastly this entire paragraph is you reading his mind and asserting his motivations and future actions when his entire actual history contraindicates any animus to homosexuals as he has many long term clients who happen to be gay. He just will not make a same sex wedding cake, divorce cake or Halloween cake for anyone never has and never will.

        Like

        • Ben PA – Yes, I am “reading the baker’s mind”, and he may continue to supply his bog-standard wedding cakes to couples he deems to be sinful, however the permission that a SCOTUS decision might give him to do so won’t be wasted on other wedding services providers.

          You’re wrong in asserting that his refusal has “nothing to do with religion”, It has EVERYTHING to do with religion as his own words asserting that all mariage is religious, and his cakes sacred, attest. But for his religious belief spilling over into his dealings with the hapless PUBLIC, he would happily (or otherwise) bake cakes for anyone who came into his shop, regardless of their race, their gender or their sexual orientation.

          That doesn’t mean he has to draw swastikas, KKK symbols or any of the other offensive symbols that people keep on insisting he would be forced to create. He doesn’t have to. Period.

          Like

          • HIS refusal may have to do with religion, but the right to refuse does not.

            The issue at hand has nothing to do with religion or even gay people. It is about establishing the precedent of using governmental force to coerce dissenters into acting against their wishes.

            If you think that is ok than you are in no way a liberal. You do not acknowledge free speech or freedom of association. You feel that the line for what is banned and what is mandatory should be at the same point with absolutely no space in between.

            And if you can’t see how that is a bad thing you lack the foresight to see how this could bite you in the ass going forward. This is the same mistake the democrats made when they gutted judicial appointment filibuster and norms of appointments.

            I realize the rules in the UK are a joke. That they have never had actual free speech and that they have little freedom of association, but you are willfully ignorant of the differences in the US and are ignoring any parts of comments trying to elucidate those difference. If you can not substantially address any of the numerous points that are not simply what was used in the analogy than this conversation has reached it’s logical conclusion.

            You focus on the most meaningless parts of comments with out ever saying anything of substance. If you have an actual point to make other than repeatedly taking offense to distract from the bulk of a comment please do so.

            Like

          • “The issue at hand has nothing to do with religion or even gay people. It is about establishing the precedent of using governmental force to coerce dissenters into acting against their wishes.” Dingdingding!!! We have a winner! Derek has already said he is all for armed government force to compel citizens to do as he commands. He does not care about individual rights or individual liberty, only about forcing his will on any and all who oppose him.

            Like

          • Ben PA This blog has gone on so long it’s possible I may have forgotten all the times I allegedly “took offence”. To the best of my recollection, it was once only, and that was over Willis’s assertion that same-sex marriage is just fantasy. What else have I “taken offence” to?

            In response to your accusation that in a week or more of dispute, I “never say anything of substance”, why even bother replying to me? The reality is that I have posited step by step dialectic in reasoned arguments, and posted screeds of information, including links to sites regarding the innate nature of homosexuality, articles on Public Accommodation, religious texts and the like.

            Many of the comments on this topic are of inordinate length, unfortunately sometimes including my own, so I try to distill down to the essence of what I believe the comment I am replying to is trying to say and hone in on that.

            Like

          • Derek,
            and that was over Willis’s assertion that same-sex marriage is just fantasy
            Citation needed. But we all know here why you didn’t provide the actual quote.

            Like

    • Bear – That is truly interesting. I wonder if they’d ban people wearing “Ex gay” or “Ex Christian” or “Ex Jew” T shirts. The article suggests that there was a protest going on at that time, so it could simply be Starbucks management didn’t want to provoke a scene inside their coffee shop with the provocative messages written on the T-shirts in question. It could also be local sensitivities if there is a large Muslim population that uses that coffee shop. I don’t see this as analogous to the wedding cake dispute though.

      Like

      • Wait, so freedom of expression isn’t allowed if someone objects? Muslims get a special dispensation to decide what others can say or wear? Ex-Muslims don’t count under the Public Accommodation laws? Remember the guy who wasn’t wearing the shirt was also barred. And I’d bet that the three Ex’s you mentioned wouldn’t have been thrown out. I wonder if they had gone into a Muslim bakery and asked for a cake with a “Left Islam” message on it what would have happened.

        Like

        • Bear – Please only quote me as saying the things I actually say and try not to put words in my mouth. I never said what you said I said.

          However, on the subject of what is permissible in a family restaurant, I’ll play the game that’s been used many times on this thread. I don’t necessarily have a problem with the ex-Muslim T-shirt, but it depends on context. How about a T shirt that says “Spray hydrofluoric acid on cocksucking faggot Jews”? That OK?

          Again, this has nothing to do with the cake scenario, because Starbucks aren’t being asked to create anything with such messages on them.

          Like

          • Those were questions to you and if you resent having words put in your mouth I suggest that you don’t accuse others of doing it.

            And the point was that it was different than the wedding cake because it was the reverse where someone was denied service because of their religion and what they were wearing. Your T shirt was irrelevant to what happened since no threat overt or otherwise was involved in the incident.

            Like

  39. Derek you say
    “Ben PA – He is not “participating” in the same-sex wedding. The ceremony is held in a registry office, with not a wedding cake, or a pastor for that matter, in sight. However, Phillips has decided all weddings are religious, and that his cakes are sacred. The wedding cake plays no part in the ceremony whatsoever, and is to feed guests at the after party.”

    He is participating in the celebration of something he does not want to associate with. You clearly have never heard somebody remark “It was a pleasure to be a part of your special day…..” which is how I have heard many bakers, photographers etc accept the thanks for their participation in a special life event.

    “If not wanting to do something is justification for refusing custom services to LGBT people, then the sky’s the limit. How about if I don’t want to pay interest on a loan? I am sure I can find a religion to join that will back me up, after all, it’s in the Bible.”

    IT STILL HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH RELIGION THIS IS A RED HERRING AND DISTRACTION.

    You signed a contract to receive the loan that stipulated what interest you would need to pay. Any logical argument would preclude you from entering the arrangement. If you came to that conclusion after accepting the loan you would either need to pay it in full or break your new found principal as contractually you are committed…..You really seem to have trouble with how laws, consent and freedom work.

    “There are those who believe that God made Africans’ skin colour black as a punishment, because of the Curse of Cain, someone analogous to the Catholic concept of ‘Original Sin’ of Adam and Eve. Should a baker who believes this be able to put up a sign saying “I don’t bake custom cakes for Black couples. Please do not ask, as a refusal may offend”?”

    This is a non sequitur and completely irrelevant to the conversation as nobody is refusing service to a class of people. Nobody is saying you can refuse service to a class of people with out repercussions.

    And yes if a private person who does contract work wants to refuse all work from a group they are free to. If the person put up that sign I would suspect they would not stay in business long enough to matter.

    A free lance writer accepts contract work to write articles in addition to writing what they feel like and then seeing if they can find a buyer. Should a writer be forced to accept a contract for an article from an LGBT magazine? Just because the people asking are LGBT? Should they be forced to publish words they do not agree with?

    If no why? and where? is the line between writing, art and all contract labor? At what point is force acceptable and at what point is it not?

    If you can not answer these questions directly don’t bother.

    Yes or No and If No why etc.

    Like

    • Ben PA – This entire scenario has EVERYTHING to do with religion because the baker himself is saying it has everything to do with his religion. Specifically, his religious belief that gay people should not be allowed to get married. He believes however that straight people should be allowed to get married. The one and only difference between these two events is the sexual orientation of the couples involved. One couple are straight and get custom service because of that fact, and the other couple are gay and are refused custom service because of that fact. Even if you set aside religion and go by mere repugnance, the refusal of the service is discriminatory. The same registry office, the same celebrant even perhaps, the same words in the nuptials. What’s different? One is a straight couple, and the other are a gay couple. He doesn’t believe gay couples should get married – BECAUSE THEY’RE GAY. If they were straight, he would deliver a custom service.

      If the baker believed in the Curse of Cain, or any other reason for that matter, then he will not want to be associated with the weddings of Blacks. He doesn’t believe Blacks should get married Does he have the right to refuse to bake custom cakes for weddings between Blacks, or interracial couples? The grounds are identical for refusal of custom service to gay couples. He doesn’t want to be associated with their marriage.

      Like

      • HIS reason does not make a damn bit of difference as to weather you can or should force people to do work you demand against their will.

        Last chance answer the Yes or No questions or don’t show yourself to be patently absurd and incapable of actually addressing the points people actually make.

        Like

  40. Derek in reply to this.

    “In response to your accusation that in a week or more of dispute, I “never say anything of substance”, why even bother replying to me? The reality is that I have posited step by step dialectic in reasoned arguments, and posted screeds of information, including links to sites regarding the innate nature of homosexuality, articles on Public Accommodation, religious texts and the like.”

    Anything of substance relevant to the topic at hand. As we have discussed innumerable times the nature of being Gay and historical persecution have no bearing on this case. Your understanding of US accommodation laws is lacking. Religion is not a part of this case. Anti-discrimination law and the 14th amendment, busing in minorities to schools etc. Are all about government action and institutions and again have no barring on a private person doing business with another private entity.

    Hence nothing you have said has been of substance or on topic to the issue at hand and the comments you appear to be replying to.

    As far as taking offense just as an example.

    “By the way, it hasn’t gone unnoticed that every time someone on this blog makes an analogy with a gay wedding, it’s always with KKK, Nazis, swastikas, and terrorists. That’s the level you see us at, with our temerity to have weddings. A message on our cake is routinely analogised to the worst depths of depravity to which humanity has sunk.”

    If not offense would this statement not be an attempt to shame people and shut down the conversation because analogies being made?

    Like

    • Ben PA – On the contrary, everything I have written is bang on topic, because it relates directly to the issue of discrimination, hypocrisy and the intrusion of religious belief into the refusal of service in a public store, with not even any signage to show that custom services are restricted to heterosexuals-only in Phillips’ store.

      You either refuse to see refusal on the grounds of sexual orientation as discriminatory, or if you do, then you are clearly fine with it. There is no other difference between a gay wedding and a straight wedding, but the sexual orientation. The fact you are unable to see this calls your entire polemic into question.

      It may not be offensive to you to have your wedding analogised to the KKK, Nazis, swastikas, things that absolutely do represent the worst depravities to which humanity has sunk in everyone’s opinion but yours apparently, but I suspect it would be offensive to most people. There is nothing about my pointing this out that remotely suggests I want to shame anybody or shut down discourse. But since you mention “shaming”, isn’t comparing us to KKK and Nazis itself a blatant act of shaming?

      Like

      • There is no other difference between a gay wedding and a straight wedding, but the sexual orientation
        You still confuse customers and products. I am a man and I can enter a shop of clothes for women and buy whatever they are selling that I want, no questions asked. The clothes on display are not custom products. However if I ask them to make some fixes to some particular dress so that it fits ME, they may object. That’s a custom service. They don’t even have to give me a reason for not doing that for me, despite offering to do that for a woman. And that, by your logic, would be even worse than “sexual orientation discrimination”, it would be sex discrimination. I may also go to a hairdresser for women, ask my haircut there and get rejected because of being a man and them not doing male haircuts, despite there are no significant physiological differences between a man and a woman’s hair. It doesn’t matter if the hair style that I ask is one that they would be willing to do for a woman, it is enough if they don’t think that it will fit a man and don’t want to be associated with the final result that they actually deliver: my final look. A hair style is a custom service always.

        A cake with an “Albert & Thomas – Happy for ever!” message and with two male figures kissing each other at the top can be a totally different cake for someone’s opinion of what looks good and what looks bad, than one that reads “John & Lucy” and has a heterosexual couple at the top, despite everything else being equal, in the same way as the hairstyle mentioned above. And as it is a custom service, someone can reject to deliver it for the only reason that, in his opinion, it is bad or looks bad. It is irrelevant if the customer shares that opinion or not.

        Like

        • Derek

          “You either refuse to see refusal on the grounds of sexual orientation as discriminatory, or if you do, then you are clearly fine with it. There is no other difference between a gay wedding and a straight wedding, but the sexual orientation. The fact you are unable to see this calls your entire polemic into question.”

          You once again are missing the boat. I fully and totally view discrimination based on sexual orientation as a major problem. Unfortunately for you that didn’t take place here.

          “It may not be offensive to you to have your wedding analogised to the KKK, Nazis, swastikas, things that absolutely do represent the worst depravities to which humanity has sunk in everyone’s opinion but yours apparently, but I suspect it would be offensive to most people. There is nothing about my pointing this out that remotely suggests I want to shame anybody or shut down discourse. But since you mention “shaming”, isn’t comparing us to KKK and Nazis itself a blatant act of shaming?”

          The point of the analogies to the KKK again has nothing to do with comparing it to “your wedding” they are about presenting something that a reasonable person (presumably you) would not want to be associated with for purposes of illustrating that people with a different opinion that is legal to hold can with hold custom service from those they disagree with.

          So now you some how think my using them as examples of things everyone should hate is some how support for the KKK… you clearly have the functional reading comprehension of an 8 year old. or once again you are being willfully obtuse and resorting to ad hom.

          Better call me a homophobe and racist just so I can complete the set. This is literally trying to shut down the conversation again with out posting anything on topic of substance or addressing a single direct question.

          This is why people like me who have fought with you for gay rights for 25 years are turning against the gay mafia. Which was the point Willis was trying to make in the original post that you are hurting your cause with the strong man tactics and spiking the ball.

          Like

          • Derek

            “Ben PA – On the contrary, everything I have written is bang on topic, because it relates directly to the issue of discrimination, hypocrisy and the intrusion of religious belief into the refusal of service in a public store, with not even any signage to show that custom services are restricted to heterosexuals-only in Phillips’ store.”

            This is an outright lie as I have pointed out before in this thread he makes custom cakes for gay people for any event that isn’t a wedding, divorce or pagan celebration i.e. halloween.

            So he doesn’t in anyway do what you said. Hence no discrimination because they are gay.

            Like

  41. Sorry Willis, i guess asking for direct answers and substantive comments on the topic at hand was a bridge too far.

    I seem to have killed the thread. Not that I ever anticipated Derek changing his mind, but hopefully it was useful for some spectators.

    Thanks for indulging us in your “home”. Have a great week.

    Like

  42. From another blog, on another topic: “there is no right answer to the wrong question”. I like that.

    Here are some odds and ends for those who wish to dig deeper on these topics.

    Derek has mentioned conversion therapy. There is a new movie with that theme, to go along with all the other teen coming of age and coming out movies. There are already lots of reviews. I haven’t seen it yet, so I’m not going to read much about it before I see the movie. This twist could be interesting: “this unusual setting [the gay conversion camp] also provides her with an unlikely gay community. For the first time, Cameron connects with peers, and she is able to find her place among fellow outcasts”.

    The Miseducation of Cameron Post
    https://www.imdb.com/title/tt6257174/
    https://variety.com/2018/film/reviews/the-miseducation-of-cameron-post-review-1202679346/

    “The Miseducation of Cameron Post” is really about the misunderstanding of Cameron Post as parents, doctors, and so on struggle to curb certain desires that ultimately don’t need to be “fixed.”

    […]

    Moretz plays Cameron like a compliant wallflower, convinced that she doesn’t belong at God’s Promise, but apparently content to study the camp’s weird dynamics as if she were some kind of amateur anthropologist.

    While the ensemble’s personalities are endearing enough, it’s the psychology of these characters that ought to make a story like this engaging. Instead, the movie seems afraid to entertain even the slightest bit of doubt as to whether these repressed teens would be better off living as openly gay. Their counselors want to force them back inside the closet, then nail the door shut after them. But the real target here are the parents.

    SCOTUS
    All the arguments and opinions that you ever wanted and more!
    http://www.scotusblog.com/case-files/cases/masterpiece-cakeshop-ltd-v-colorado-civil-rights-commn/

    https://www.brookings.edu/blog/fixgov/2018/06/06/masterpiece-cake-baker-wins-but-the-supreme-court-leaves-key-questions-unanswered/
    This post-game analysis, justice by justice, is good and gives clues how future games will play out.

    “the words with which Justice Kennedy ends his opinion may prove prescient:
    The outcome of cases like this in other circumstances must await further elaboration in the courts, all in the context of recognizing that these disputes must be resolved with tolerance, without undue disrespect to sincere religious beliefs, and without subjecting gay persons to indignities when they seek goods and services in an open market.

    “Media and the Rise of Homosexuality”
    https://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2018/09/media_of_the_rise_of_homosexuality.html

    The author notes that homosexuality went from being disgusting and feared in the sixties to being accepted and celebrated today. He explores how that happened. He claims that the Stonewall Riots in 1969 were not the cause. While homosexuals were discriminated against for most employment, they thrived in the creative arts fields and from there had a huge influence. You may not agree with him that this is a bad thing, but he has a point. I had never heard of Stonewall until it was mentioned in comments here.

    Like

  43. A relevant recent court ruling on compelled speech applicable to the Colorado baker …

    The right not to speak derives largely from the notion, central to our system of government, that the individual’s right to “freedom of mind” must be jealously guarded. Preserving the “freedom to think as you will and to speak as you think” is both an inherent good, and an abiding goal of our democracy. In service of this core component of liberty, our jurisprudence recognizes a “sphere of intellect and spirit which it is the purpose of the First Amendment to our Constitution to reserve from all official control.”

    In our view, compelled speech presents a unique affront to personal dignity. The decision to withhold speech depends on views and calculations known only to the individual. And since the individual seeks to refrain from speaking, those motivations are all the more obscure, and privately held. Accordingly, the right not to speak may be abrogated only under carefully policed circumstances. As the Supreme Court has explained, between compelled silence and compelled speech, compelled speech is the more serious incursion on the First Amendment: “It would seem that involuntary affirmation could be commanded only on even more immediate and urgent grounds than silence.” …

    This agrees with what I’ve said, which is that freedom of speech includes the freedom to NOT speak.

    w.

    Like

    • “The right not to speak derives largely from the notion, central to our system of government, that the individual’s right to “freedom of mind” must be jealously guarded. Preserving the “freedom to think as you will and to speak as you think” is both an inherent good, and an abiding goal of our democracy”

      Boom, there it is. The political left believes they can compel Americans to think, speak and act as they command. They are failing. The backlash is growing, “people” such as Derek are going to slink away and foment their “revolution” the shadows where they will waste away, old, bitter and broken. Individual liberty, individual freedom, we win.

      Like

  44. A similar cake problem has been going through the courts in Northern Ireland.
    https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-northern-ireland-45789759
    The Supreme court has decided in the end that the baker couldn’t be forced to write a slogan on the cake that they personally didn’t agree with. Quote from the court:

    “They would have refused to make such a cake for any customer, irrespective of their sexual orientation,” she said.

    “Their objection was to the message on the cake, not to the personal characteristics of Mr Lee.”

    She added: “Accordingly, this court holds that there was no discrimination on the ground of the sexual orientation of Mr Lee.”
    endquote.

    However, this final decision has cost around half a million pounds and over 4 years, since it went through a couple of lower courts first where the baker lost. Like the US case, the customer had bought cakes from the baker before and the baker says he’d sell them more cakes if they wanted them – but not with a message on them that the baker found offensive.

    If you want a message on a cake that the baker objects to, then buy a set of icing pens and write it yourself. Similarly, if a printer won’t print your message on a placard, it’s pretty easy to pick up a pen and write it yourself. If Amazon won’t sell you a Confederate flag, a bit of work with dyes and a white flag gets you one. Luckily, forcing people to endorse a message they don’t agree with has been recognised by the courts as not legal. For those that want their own special message on some object, they need to find alternatives to forcing an unwilling artisan to do it by using a threat of lawfare.

    Like

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