The LGBT community has clearly spoken: Do as we say, not as we do. As Thoedore Shoebat demonstrates in the videos below, the hypocrisy of gays coercing individuals to make cakes, which violate their religious beliefs, while at the same time refusing to provide the same services to those same types of individuals because it violates their own beliefs, seems to be lost on them. (See Alanis, that is what you call ironic.)
Earlier this year, separate bakeries in Oregon and Colorado were found to have violated the civil rights of gay couples when they refused contracts to bake wedding cakes for them. Sweet Cakes bakery of Gresham, Oregon, was forced to close its doors following harassment from gay rights activists and is facing $150,000 in fines.Inquisitr. Bakery That Refused To Make Gay Marriage Cake Faces $150K Penalty. September 30, 2014. http://www.inquisitr.com/1510678/bakery-that-refused-to-make-gay-marriage-cake-faces-150k-penalty/ Jake Phillips of Masterpiece Cakeshop in Lakewood, Colorado, has ceased selling wedding cakes altogether.CBS News. Colorado baker to stop making wedding cakes after losing discrimination case. May 31, 2014. http://www.cbsnews.com/news/colorado-baker-to-stop-making-wedding-cakes-after-losing-discrimination-case/
Of course when I first heard about it, I was dismayed that bakeries would refuse wedding cakes based on religious beliefs. If I ever open a bakery, I offer the guarantee I will make a cake for anyone — even if they want to celebrate the five year engagement with their horse. (Although, I’d probably just send that cake out to the barn in a plain box, no business card.)
To me, the primary argument of discrimination revolves around whether or not a baker falls under a protected classification: Artist (for example, an actor cannot be forced to accept a gay part), religious institution, etc. And while I do believe some exotic cakes would clearly fall under the protections of First Amendment artistic expression, I think most cakes are simply too generic in design to warrant it. That is conspicuously apparent when a baker would not object to the same design if ordered by a heterosexual couple. Moreover, the production of the cake is independent in location and time from the event. Much different than, say, a photographer or a performance musician, who must attend and participate in order to provide their services.
For those reasons, I tended to believe, legally, it was inappropriate for a bakery to deny a cake contract based on religious convictions, instead of letting the market punish those proprietors (assuming their are suitable alternatives) who chose poorly when exercising their right to refuse service to anyone not included in public accommodation laws. However, listening to bakery after bakery run by gays refuse to make a cake for a traditional marriage event, I can see I was wrong.
No one likes a sore winner. Because it seems they want to have their cake and eat it too. (See what I did there?) To deny exactly the same service to pro-traditional marriage folks as they did to gays based on the individual beliefs of the proprietors is the apogee of hypocrisy. Even more so after the LGBT community has forced two state rulings declaring it a civil rights violation!
Many of the beliefs held by Christian conservatives are quickly becoming marginalized and censured in U.S. popular culture, which opens the door for discrimination against them. But being as these mores are no longer in vogue, increasingly there are fewer options for remedy available to individuals whom run counter to culture, which perversely, results in such groups possibly suffering the same proscription that gays did just twenty years prior. If it was wrong then, it is wrong now.
So that brings me to the question, how as a nation — particularly in one which increasingly promotes (at least rhetorically) cultural diversity — should we handle changing social values? From looking at the case of gay marriage as it intrudes into the economic and civil freedoms of bakery proprietors and their potential customers, maybe we should refrain from running to the government every time someone does something we do not like. In murky legal situations such as these, letting the market punish and persuade people to change their behaviour may not be as quick as a court ruling, but ultimately it is just as effective, while also preserving individual personal freedoms. (The law that protects one group today may very well do harm to another.)
As exhibited by the anti-gay marriage bakery in Oregon, I argue the market was an even more powerful instrument than government. Public opinion literally closed their shop as they lost business due to their business practices. It seems that alone would be a sufficient deterrent to all businesses in the community, not just bakeries; unlike government coercion. Traditionally, more laws inevitably lead to less freedom. Indeed, a wise liberal once said: “A society who puts equality before freedom will get neither. A society that puts freedom before equality will get a high degree of both.”
I feel compelled to point out in fairness the ignoratio elenchi. Mr. Shoebat is asking for the bakeries to write his belief on the cakes: “Gay marriage is wrong.” In neither the Colorado nor the (I believe) Oregon case did the gay couples ask for any statement to be written that was contrary to the owners’ religious beliefs.
The Civil Rights Commission ruling in Colorado only applied to wedding cakes Mr. Phillips would sell to anyone else, not to anything specifically promoting gay marriage through a suggestive design or textual statement.State of Colorado Civil Rights Commission. Craig and Mullins v. Masterpiece Cakeshop – Commission’s Final Order. Via ACLU, June 2, 2014. https://www.aclu.org/lgbt-rights/craig-and-mullins-v-masterpiece-cakeshop-commissions-final-order
So, what Mr. Shoebat is doing is not exactly the same; as he is taking it a step further. We do not know how many bakeries would have accepted a contract if he had not asked for that statement.
But props to the woman at Hot Cookie in San Francisco, she finally came around in the end. But next time I think she should lead with her closer:
If you want to be ignorant and a bigot, then sure I’ll make it for you. I’ll put a big dick on it too.
She ain’t kiddin’.
References [ + ]
|1.||↑||Inquisitr. Bakery That Refused To Make Gay Marriage Cake Faces $150K Penalty. September 30, 2014. http://www.inquisitr.com/1510678/bakery-that-refused-to-make-gay-marriage-cake-faces-150k-penalty/|
|2.||↑||CBS News. Colorado baker to stop making wedding cakes after losing discrimination case. May 31, 2014. http://www.cbsnews.com/news/colorado-baker-to-stop-making-wedding-cakes-after-losing-discrimination-case/|
|3.||↑||State of Colorado Civil Rights Commission. Craig and Mullins v. Masterpiece Cakeshop – Commission’s Final Order. Via ACLU, June 2, 2014. https://www.aclu.org/lgbt-rights/craig-and-mullins-v-masterpiece-cakeshop-commissions-final-order|