US Christian baker takes case to Supreme Court

A Christian who declined to produce a wedding cake for a same-sex couple is taking his case to the US Supreme Court.

Jack Phillips politely turned down the request in 2012 at his Masterpiece Cakeshop, but was sued by the two men involved.

Phillips’ lawyers say he was simply using his freedom to decline to “use his artistic talents to promote a message and event with which he fundamentally disagrees”.

Message

A previous decision ordered Masterpiece Cakeshop to make cakes for same-sex weddings, according to its lawyers, Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF).

Phillips was also told to provide “comprehensive staff training” on the issue and provide reports on any cakes it declines to make.

ADF Senior Counsel Jeremy Tedesco said Phillips had happily served people of all backgrounds for many years but did not agree with the message of a same-sex marriage cake.

Violation

Tedesco said: “No one—not Jack or anyone else—should be forced by the government to further a message that they cannot in good conscience promote”.

He added: “We are asking the U.S. Supreme Court to ensure that government understands that its duty is to protect the people’s freedom to follow their beliefs personally and professionally, not force them to violate those beliefs as the price of earning a living.”

Nicolle Martin, another lawyer working on the case, said: “No artist should be punished for declining to promote ideas or participate in events when they disagree with the message communicated.”

Helping people

Speaking in an ADF video, Phillips said that in over twenty years of being in business, he had served generations of families and had helped people in the local community.

“That’s not something you put in a business plan for a bakery, but it’s the way God has been able to use us in a lot of different ways.”

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