A Year In Jail For Refusing To Bake A Cake

2012-11-28-Wedding-Cake

Gay marriage has been banned in Colorado since 2006. Yet, despite that, a baker in Denver is facing a year in jail for refusing to bake a cake for a gay marriage ceremony:

A Denver bakery that refused to make a wedding cake for a gay couple is about to face the legal heat.

The Colorado Attorney General’s office last week filed a discrimination complaint against the owners of Masterpiece Cakeshop, who last year declined to make a cake for Denver couple Dave Mullins and Charlie Craig, the Associated Press reports. The couple had their marriage ceremony in Massachusetts and wanted the cake for a hometown celebration with family and friends.

Jack Phillips, one of the owners of Masterpiece Cakeshop, had cited his Christian beliefs in refusing the men’s business. “We would close down the bakery before we compromised our beliefs,” Phillips told a television interviewer last summer.

Gay marriage should absolutely be equal. Gays should be treated equally under the law. I’m not a fan of the government giving its blessing (or denying its blessing) to private social contracts in general, but if they’re going to do it they should do it equally.

But this is something else. This isn’t equality. This is the government enforcing a particular point of view about a lifestyle on the public at large.

What’s ironic is that the same people who invoke their freedom of associate with who they want, in this instance their freedom to enter into a social contract with someone else of the same sex, seem to be arguing that this baker doesn’t have that same freedom to disassociate himself from people he doesn’t like.

We can all have opinion’s on that baker’s feelings on the subject – I wouldn’t shop at a bakery that discriminates against gays – but doesn’t an individual have a right to those feelings?

It seems the government, at least in this instance, isn’t merely satisfied to allow gay marriages but also wants to force other citizens/businesses to endorse, or at least condone, those marriages.

That’s a bridge too far.

This freedom stuff cuts both ways.

Rob Port is the editor of SayAnythingBlog.com. In 2011 he was a finalist for the Watch Dog of the Year from the Sam Adams Alliance and winner of the Americans For Prosperity Award for Online Excellence. In 2013 the Washington Post named SAB one of the nation's top state-based political blogs, and named Rob one of the state's best political reporters. He writes a weekly column for several North Dakota newspapers, and also serves as a policy fellow for the North Dakota Policy Council.

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