Christian bakers in Oregon, USA, have been forced to close their shop because of “mob tactics” by LGBT activists over same-sex marriage.
Earlier this year Aaron and Melissa Klein declined to make a wedding cake for a gay couple, because they believe marriage is between a man and a woman.
But in the following months the Kleins have faced an official investigation, death threats, and a boycott from homosexual activists.
LGBT protestors also threatened other marriage businesses in the area with boycotts if they worked with Mr and Mrs Klein’s shop.
“That tipped the scales”, said Mr Klein, “The LGBT activists inundated them with phone calls and threatened them.
“They would tell our vendors, ‘If you don’t stop doing business with Sweet Cakes By Melissa, we will shut you down.'”
He commented: “The LGBT attacks are the reason we are shutting down the shop.
“They have killed our business through mob tactics.”
The couple will continue the business from home, but Mr Klein has taken another full-time job.
But Mr Klein commented: “As a man of faith, I am in good spirits”. He also said: “I’m happy to be serving the Lord and standing up for what’s right.”
Mr Klein called on Christians to be prepared to “take a stand”.
“Hopefully, the church will wake up”, he added.
The Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries received an anti-discrimination complaint about the issue in August.
Its commissioner told a local newspaper: “Everybody is entitled to their own beliefs, but that doesn’t mean that folks have the right to discriminate”.
He added: “The goal is to rehabilitate. For those who do violate the law, we want them to learn from that experience and have a good, successful business in Oregon.”
Among the hate mail the couple received were threats to kill the family, and one that said: “I hope your kids get really, really, sick and you go out of business.”
Another said: “Here’s hoping you go out of business, you bigot. Enjoy hell”.