Court Of Appeals Hears Gay Wedding Cake Case
Around the nation, eyes are on Colorado. Tuesday, a court of appeals heard a case of gay
rights versus religious freedom. Should a baker be forced to make a wedding cake for a gay couple? It's been a three-year legal battle. The Colorado baker was asked to bake a wedding cake for a gay couple, but Jack Phillips said that's a problem because it violates his religious beliefs. He doesn't think the government
should force him to do it.
"We still have rights as American citizens to our faith and free speech rights," Phillips said.
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Charlie Craig and David Mullin said this isn't a discussion about religion--it’s discrimination.
"A cake shop is a place open to the public and as such governed by civil laws not religious laws," Mullin said.
Once they were refused service from the bakery in Lakewood, Craig and Mullin filed a complaint with the Colorado Civil Rights Commission, citing a state law that bars discrimination based on sexual orientation.
They won, then Phillips appealed.
He said he'll make any other cake for same-sex couples, but won't do a wedding cake because gay marriage is against his religion.
"A government tells you what can't say is bad enough; a government that tells you what you must say and what must create is one we should all fear,” Phillips’ attorney Nicolle Martin said.
After the state said he must make wedding cakes for everyone, he stopped making wedding cakes for anyone.
"There's nothing about baking or selling a cake that reflects an endorsement of anyone's marriage; the refusal to make full menu services available to gay and lesbian couples
is what's discriminatory," Craig and Mullins’ attorney Ria Mar said.
The court isn't expected to rule on this case for several months.
In the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court
ruling legalizing gay marriage, both sides say much is at stake. This case will also likely wind up before the Colorado Supreme Court.
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