Analysis: In wedding cake ruling, Supreme Court calls for a balance that will be difficult to strike

Return To Article
Add a comment
  • Chuck E. Racer Lehi, UT
    Aug. 13, 2018 2:02 p.m.

    If the LGBT were actually suffering "heartbreaking discrimination," then the writer would be justified in this article. The fact is that in most cases the LGBT have many options but choose rather to target religious people and businesses in their war against religion. The Court correctly stated that courts cannot use an anti-religious bias in their rulings. This was a very softly-stated ruling that only slowed down the anti-religious bias that has being applied in too many cases.

  • imsmarterthanyou Salt Lake City, UT
    June 18, 2018 12:40 p.m.

    I'm a business owner. I reserve the right to refuse service to anyone at any time, for any reason, or no reason at all. Period.

  • Kings Court Alpine, UT
    June 18, 2018 10:35 a.m.

    I think a good compromise that respects the everyone's rights and dignity is to require business that have exceptions to who they serve to display those exceptions in the window or door. That preserves the dignity of LGBTQ or interracial customers who only find out they won't be served after entering the business establishment and it stops confrontational situations when a business owner is trying to explain their religious rationale to undesirable customers. It also allows for customers to choose who to support or not support based on the beliefs of the business owners who seem to have no problem in sharing those beliefs with their customer base.

  • Thomas Thompson Salt Lake City, UT
    June 18, 2018 5:12 a.m.

    While I agree with the result in the Masterpiece Cake case, some of the Court's language in the decision sweeps to broadly and can be read to suggest that "religious freedom" must always prevail over other rights we all enjoy as citizens of the United States. I think the Court would have better served us all if it had avoided the Constitutional dilemma by holding that purveyors of non-vital services in the public marketplace have a wide degree of discretion whether and under what circumstances those services must be provided to a paying customer. The larger question which the Court must still address is whether a purveyor of vital services -- for example, an emergency room physician -- is also free to decline his services on the basis of religious freedom. That's a much harder question; and if the Court ever considers it, my guess is that it will reach a result at odds with the Masterpiece Cake case.

  • PorLibertad Salt Lake City, UT
    June 12, 2018 3:14 p.m.

    It sure becomes apparent that gay folks want to be treated with respect and deference for their life style. Unfortunately some of those same gay folks are resistant to extend that same understanding and respect to folks who live a conservative lifestyle.

    All that one sided approach does is hurt the agenda of gay folks in the eyes of fair minded people everywhere. Ultimately, it stunts their progression in society.

  • John Pack Lambert of Michigan Ypsilanti, MI
    June 12, 2018 10:55 a.m.

    The poll is clearly biased against the artists involved. The issue in masterpiece is the government compelling an artist to create work. Also the baker would sell a cake he would just not make one to explicitly celebrate the event. The issue has always turned on what ceremonies are celebrating not on refusing services to a group of people per se. It is high time this nianced difference was presented accurately.

  • EscherEnigma Ridgecrest, CA
    June 11, 2018 2:58 p.m.

    @bofus
    yeah, we've tried that.

    When Oklahoma was talking about it's "religious right to refuse" law a year or so back, someone suggested an amendment that any business planning on takign advantage of the law would have to publicly post it's intent. This amendment was roundly attacked as anti-Christian bigotry.

    Similarly, when Alabama (or maybe Mississippi, one of those states) was considering such a law, businesses in the state started voluntarily posting stickers in their own windows "we serve everyone!" with a rainbow flag. This was roundly attacked as anti-Christian bigotry.

    Put simply, the folks that intend to discrimiante against gay folk don't want it advertised.

    @Flipphone
    If you truly feel that way, I encourage you to seek the repeal of the CRA (1964). After all, if it's good enough for gay people to simply walk on and never sue, then it's good enough for everyone else to simply walk on and never sue.

    @Counter Intelligence
    I was married in the county clerk office by a government employee in which we signed a government document. God was not invited or wanted. Stop pushing *your* religion onto *my* marriage.

  • quackquack Park City, UT
    June 11, 2018 7:25 a.m.

    The sign that says "we have the right to refuse anyone" is not accurate you cannot refuse based on skin color, religion, race or sex

    These are federal discrimination laws

    Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII)
    This law makes it illegal to discriminate against someone on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, or sex.

  • Flipphone Sandy, UT
    June 10, 2018 8:43 a.m.

    A sign that says. we reserve the right to refused service to anyone. I think I seen those signs before.

  • Flipphone Sandy, UT
    June 10, 2018 8:39 a.m.

    A couple wanting to purchase a wedding cake, OK you enter a bakery shop and ask to purchase a cake if they owner says no, fine, go to another baker, I'm certain that you will find a baker who will be happy to bake a cake for you. Why make a big deal out of this? or is making a big deal out of this your intent?

  • Bofus Olympia, WA
    June 9, 2018 10:03 a.m.

    My solution:

    I think that businesses that have these deeply felt beliefs should be required to post a list of who they want to exclude. It should be displayed prominently so one can see and read before entering said business.

    It can say something like this:

    "Hey we love gay people and will gladly take your money for everything but a wedding cake, because you know, deeply held beliefs."

    This way no one gets any hurt feelings. The excluded ones can read the notice and then take their perversions elsewhere. The business avoids any ugly scenes. Winnning!

  • Karen R. Houston, TX
    June 9, 2018 5:16 a.m.

    @ Counter

    "I am homosexual, but my sexuality has routinely morphed and I do [not] buy into the rigidly dogmatic 'born that way' mythology."

    Three things:

    1 - Your experience of your sexuality doesn't mean that it's the experience of all others.

    2 - Related to 1, don't underestimate the impact of abuse in complicating the picture. My history is similar to yours in that our introduction to sexuality was abusive. While this isn't uncommon, it also isn't the norm.

    3 - What you've described here and elsewhere sounds more like bisexuality than homosexuality to me.

    As I understand it, our sexual orientation develops out of a number of things, both biological and environmental. For the vast majority of us, it's a process done outside our consciousness. We discover our orientation, we don't choose it. So while it may be technically incorrect to say "I was born that way," it is descriptive of how it feels to many.

  • Lilly Munster , 00
    June 8, 2018 2:24 p.m.

    It is not a Constitutional Right to have a business, or a business license. There are many, many requirements, both Federal and State, in being granted that privileged. A business is not a religion. You are in business to serve the public, which means everyone, regardless of your individual biases.
    How do you honor your religious beliefs, if they are offensive, harmful and exclusionary?
    Ask yourself......what WOULD Jesus do? He would bake that cake, and serve it with love, gratitude and joy, just as he Fed the Five Thousand without asking any questions. Or do you believe that He had a list of those who deserved shame and hunger?
    If you claim to have a Faith, live it without discrimination, hypocrisy and the desire to punish.
    Imagine the better outcome if the cake baker had taken the opportunity for kindness, not self-righteousness? If you weaponize your religion, you are not Christ like.
    Go ahead and claim that you are harmed if you have to serve everyone.
    But don't be surprised when Mormons are sent away for being less than Christian, and when Jews and Muslims are being sent away for not being acceptable to Christian Fundamentalist bigots.

  • Dmorgan Herriman, UT
    June 8, 2018 12:05 p.m.

    @Susan Quinton -

    Obviously, you read what you wanted to when you read my post. I don't bear hostility toward religion. However, there are beliefs that some religions adhere to that do not improve humanity and their relationships to each other. Also, religions are not the source of goodwill and harmony towards others. As I've read, "You don't need religion to have morals. If you can't determine right from wrong then you lack empathy, not religion."

    What my post was asking is for the religious to give me a little education regarding the source of their discriminatory beliefs regarding LGBTQ when their holy book contains other prohibitions that the religious seem to regard as irrelevant. It appears to me that their behavior is nothing more than "cherry-picking", which, in my opinion, is not a moral stance.

    If your are religious and accepting of LGBTQ and others who live a lifestyle prohibited by your religion, and protect their rights, then good for you. Piety doesn't grant you special ability to be empathetic towards your fellow humans, however.

  • Counter Intelligence Salt Lake City, UT
    June 8, 2018 8:50 a.m.

    @Ranch
    "We don't allow businesses to use religion to discriminate against blacks." equating physical traits of race (or gender) with behavioral traits such as orientation (or religion) is disingenuous.

    "We don't allow businesses to use religion to discriminate against those of other religions." We specifically do not force them to participate in other peoples religious rituals either.

    "We shouldn't allow businesses to use religion to discriminate against LGBT customers either." Masterpiece bakery did NOT discriminate against gays (who they have sold to), they refuse to participate in a gay ritual. It is amazing how many activists willfully refuse to note the major difference.

    "Religion isn't an excuse for discrimination." Nether is being gay - if you have the right to deeply held beliefs then so do those who do not share your thoughts, feeling and behaviors.

    I am homosexual, but my sexuality has routinely morphed and I do buy into the rigidly dogmatic "born that way" mythology. I am appalled that gay activists have become the very bullies they claim to abhor. Don't demand tolerance while simultaneously refusing to offer tolerance.

  • Counter Intelligence Salt Lake City, UT
    June 8, 2018 8:39 a.m.

    @Lilly Munster

    "Be careful what discrimination you approve of, and why.
    Imagine the very possible scenario that in the future Mormons could be turned away by the vast majority of Christian Fundamentalists, because of their "sincerely held religious beliefs" that Mormons are NOT real Christians? "

    You provide an intellectually offensive and deliberately misleading false equivalence.
    Masterpiece bakery did not refuse service to gays, in fact they offered to sell other items and had previously served gays, In this instance, they refused to make a custom cake inconsistent with the owners own beliefs. In your scenario, it remains wrong for an evangelical to generically refuse service to Mormons, but they have no responsibility to participate in Mormon rituals.

    If you are going to be offended, why not blast Apple Computers for 'pass-thought' hosting gay hook up apps in their app store, but refusing to 'pass-thought' an app from an ex-gay ministry. Do trillion dollar businesses get to be anti-religion but single person custom bakers must be forced to be pro-gay?

    The idea that some have a right to conscience that others do not have is the essence of 'discrimination'..

  • Gildas LOGAN, UT
    June 8, 2018 7:41 a.m.

    Things have really changed. As I was growing up it was illegal to have same sex sex, the psychologists held homosexuality to be a psychological disease, and there was little if any of the idea of 'just an alternative lifestyle'. Now toleration is demanded and fights are picked. As Bob Hope once said: I hope they don't make it compulsory.

  • Pops NORTH SALT LAKE, UT
    June 8, 2018 7:07 a.m.

    Such conflicts between competing "rights" are the inevitable result when we fail to understand the concept of rights, which took centuries to establish, and endeavor to abolish legitimate rights or introduce illegitimate ones. A legitimate right does not involve the coercion of action of one person on behalf of another.

    When the courts decided that businesses operate at the pleasure of government in order to eliminate racial discrimination by businesses, they abolished an important right, which is economic freedom. This introduced conflicts into our legal system. The argument can be made that simply overturning Jim Crow laws and allowing market forces to work would have been sufficient to achieve the desired goal of eliminating racial discrimination by business in a more natural way.

    The right way forward is to restore economic freedom. Let the marketplace work - free people engaging in voluntary transactions. Otherwise, we risk fulfilling the prophecy in the Book of Revelation (13:17): "And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name."

  • Mayfair Logan, UT
    June 8, 2018 7:07 a.m.

    ERB said --- "Those against this ruling will never get it. He didn't refuse to sell them products. He refused to endorse their lifestyle for religious reasons."

    I know an atheist who has no religious feelings who thinks a active gay lifestyle is unnatural, weird and many other strong descriptions we can't list here.
    He is especially appalled at the confusion of children in a gay or lesbian relationship, SSM or not.

    He would have never agreed to make a cake--but not for religious reasons. Those like him should be protected from being compelled too.

  • Lilly Munster , 00
    June 8, 2018 12:12 a.m.

    Be careful what discrimination you approve of, and why.
    Imagine the very possible scenario that in the future Mormons could be turned away by the vast majority of Christian Fundamentalists, because of their "sincerely held religious beliefs" that Mormons are NOT real Christians? Give ANYONE the power to inflict their religious beliefs in the marketplace, and almost anyone can and will be discriminated against. For example, Main Stream Modern Christians believe that ALL discrimination is a sin. Therefore, they could refuse service to a significant segment of Christianity for "the sin of discrimination."

  • rexwhitmer ELFRIDA, AZ
    June 7, 2018 9:37 p.m.

    The customers knew the cake maker and had done business with him before. He makes exquisite cakes and is quite an artist, making pictures and so forth on his cakes. They wanted him to make their cake to their demand, their pictures holding hands and kissing. He told them that this would violate his religion, and offered them several other options! They demanded he make the cake to their specifications, which he could do as he is a very good artist! Now just as they have their right to live as they desire, he also has his rights to decide what is right or wrong! The court decided seven to two for the cake maker. These two men were well aware of the cake maker's religion. The baker even offered them several other pictures to put on the cake! This was an "in your face" situation! Their homosexuality was not the problem!

  • Shaun Sandy, UT
    June 7, 2018 8:20 p.m.

    I respect the court's decision because I believe in the rule of law.

    However, I wish the baker would have accommodated this couple in some capacity. He could have offered to bake a generic wedding cake without design. He could have offered to have an employee who doesn't share his beliefs bake and design the cake. He could have referred other bakeries that would have gladly baked a cake for this couple.

    In every one of the above scenarios, he is serving the gay couple in some capacity. I would have respected the baker more if he would have done that.

    Also before anyone states the couple wanted a "gay wedding cake" there was no discussion of design. As soon as the baker found out it was for a gay couple he basically turned them away.

  • ERB Eagle Mountain, UT
    June 7, 2018 7:43 p.m.

    Those against this ruling will never get it. He didn't refuse to sell them products. He refused to endorse their lifestyle for religious reasons. They knew his reasons. Had they just wanted a wedding cake from him, all they to do was not tell him it was for two guys. Put the two guys on the top of the cake after he delivered the cake. No, they wanted a fight.

  • hankel Butte, MT
    June 7, 2018 7:04 p.m.

    The couple could have taken their business to a gay friendly bakery. However, it is much better for their "cause" to make trouble for business owners who are just trying to make a living and do it according to the dictates of their own conscience. I know this has already been said with different words, but this is just another example of contempt for the 1st Amendment. The ruling is specific to this case, but thank heaven it was in favor of freedom of religion.

  • I M LDS 2 Provo, UT
    June 7, 2018 5:58 p.m.

    "The gay couple should just take their business elsewhere..."

    On the other hand, if you don't want to open your business to ALL the public, you are free to DON'T OPEN A BUSINESS!

    Pretty simple.

  • Mage Springville, UT
    June 7, 2018 4:00 p.m.

    Would any of us view this case differently if it had been an interracial couple who approached the baker and wanted a wedding cake for their big day, but he turned them away because he said their interracial marriage offended his deeply held religious beliefs?

    If that scenario would change how you feel about this case, then you know you hold biases against same sex couples. Maybe same sex couples really do need the same legislative protections interracial couples enjoy.

  • Frozen Fractals Salt Lake City, UT
    June 7, 2018 3:56 p.m.

    To everyone who thinks the gay couple should go to another shop because most would bake them the cake... what if that wasn't true?

    When Loving v Virginia was decided expanding interracial marriage across the country only 20% of the country supported same-sex marriage in a Gallup poll a couple years after the ruling. What if same-sex marriage were expanded in a similar way in the mid-90s when support was around 25%? Of course in some parts of the country the support would be much lower than 25%. What if in Utah (presumably one of the least supportive back then) only 10% of bakeries were willing to bake a cake? Since, after all, with public support so low in this hypothetical, it'd be risky to accept that sort of thing. Would it be a problem if a majority of businesses were refusing that service rather than just the scattered small number that we see today? If it would be a problem in that hypothetical, then why would it be okay when it's rare?

  • Frozen Fractals Salt Lake City, UT
    June 7, 2018 3:47 p.m.

    @Paul in MD
    "Discrimination by a business would be declining to serve a class of people in all transactions"

    It's still discrimination whether it's one product or all products.

    @Redshirt
    "For example, should a black person be forced to make something for the KKK?"

    There's no non-discrimination statute that applies to the KKK.

    "Should a gay person be forced to print tee-shirts for an anti-gay rally?"

    No non-discrimination statute that applies to that.

    "Should a Muslim be forced to prepare food for a passover feast?"

    Assuming we are referring to them preparing whatever food it is they normally serve at their establishment, yes they should.

    There's the matter of what currently is covered in non-discrimination laws and what people differ on in thinking should be covered. Like in Utah law there wouldn't be a cake case because there isn't a law. I think there should be one. I'm not sure what classification one would use to cover the KKK example, but I'm not supportive of creating that class.

    @zgomer
    " the LGBT community will always want to keep pushing their agenda no matter what"

    The other side voted to ban their marriages.

  • M_Hawke Golden, CO
    June 7, 2018 3:26 p.m.

    If that graph of the poll is correct, then Americans have really lost their common sense and have become totally ignorant of the constitution. Or...the wording of the polling question could be off. I would like to see the question(s) that was posed to get these results. Because what this poll says is that the majority of Americans feel that any interest group or the government should have the right to force a business owner to go against his beliefs.

    Does anyone remember why Europeans came to this continent?

    Does anyone remember what actually made America the greatest civilization to ever grace the planet?

  • Cinci Man FT MITCHELL, KY
    June 7, 2018 3:26 p.m.

    How many Christian bookstores refuse to carry The Book of Mormon or other books by Mormon authors? I support their right to refuse to carry those products and I imagine they do not do so for religious reasons - not to promote Mormonism. I'm good with that and with the right of Deseret Book to choose which books to carry. I do not fault a baker that doesn't sell a gay wedding cake.

    I have to wonder if there would have been a way for these guys to get a wedding cake from this baker. What were the fundamentals of this sale? What I've heard is that the couple specifically asked for a wedding cake for their gay marriage. Maybe that was the wrong approach. I think this story is not over. There's room for more discussion on this subject, without name-calling and stone throwing..

  • benjjamin Provo, UT
    June 7, 2018 3:01 p.m.

    We are (or should be) free to choose for ourselves our path without government interference of any kind, as long as that path doesn't violate another's life, liberty (natural liberty consists in the power of acting as one thinks fit, without any restraint or control, except from the laws of nature - source 1828 dictionary), and property.

    The gay couple still had their lives, still had their liberty, and still had their property. Nothing was stolen from them. But they did try to steal the baker's liberty.

    Our society has twisted around so bad.

    Had the baker abused them, threatened them, or robbed them, this would be another story. He did none of those things. He simply politely declined participating in a gay wedding, as his moral conscience dictated. Great. Wonderful.

    We ALL have that natural liberty (at least we should) and must never let it be taken away from us.

    The government is already WAY too big for its britches. We need to be walking in the other direction, one that bestows more liberty, not less.

  • FT salt lake city, UT
    June 7, 2018 3:00 p.m.

    As more cases, similar to this, come in front of the courts the decision will have to be made whether we are an inclusive society blind to ones color, religion or beliefs or an exclusive one?
    Nothing was resolved because in the real world nothing was decided that can be uniformly applied. Things need to be black and white or right or wrong when it comes to the cultural guardrails of our laws.

  • Harrison Bergeron Holladay , UT
    June 7, 2018 2:05 p.m.

    There are some very thoughtful comments here. There are also some comments that reflect a misunderstanding of the case.

    Philips told Charlie Craig and Dave Mullins “I’ll make your birthday cakes, shower cakes, sell you cookies and brownies, I just don’t make cakes for same sex weddings.”

    In short, the Colorado Civil Rights Commission lost because they treated Philips differently because of his religion. For example, the Commission ruled in favor of bakers with "objections to anti-gay messages."

    Philips was reasonable and kind. If I walked into a Kosher deli without knowing and asked for an Easter Ham and then was politely made aware of the awkward nature of my request, I would simply move on. It appears that these two men were not satisfied with a polite decline of their request. They chose to use the power of the state government to retaliate. That's spiteful and intolerant.

  • Hugo West Jordan, UT
    June 7, 2018 1:22 p.m.

    I think it's actually pretty easy to come up with different scenarios (not having to do with a cake for a gay wedding) to support both sides of the argument here. Which is the point of the article, I think.

    There are some situations where conscientious objections need to override other considerations and some situations where they shouldn't. Unfortunately, there isn't going to be consensus on what circumstances fall in which situation.

    I'd encourage everyone to try to imagine a scenario that would lead them to the opposite conclusion of what they currently think. Doing so will highlight that it's not going to be easy to get the right balance here.

  • Karen R. Houston, TX
    June 7, 2018 12:50 p.m.

    @ NoNames

    "Your solution enshrines inequality."

    Nope. Mr. Phillips can go into any shop in the public marketplace and, just like gay couples, expect to be served any product being offered.

    He also is no more constrained from exercising his religion than the baker whose religion tells him that white and black people shouldn't mix in his diner, or the motel owner whose religion tells him that mixed-race couples shouldn't share a room, or the deli owner whose religion tells him that he shouldn't have to serve a woman so immodest as to walk around with her hair uncovered.

    On the other hand, if SCOTUS had said Mr. Phillips could refuse to serve gay couples the wedding cakes he sells to every other couple, he would have been granted a right that no one else in the marketplace has.

    That would be enshrining inequality.

  • Frank Walters Salt Lake City, UT
    June 7, 2018 12:49 p.m.

    @ranch - You're mistaken, it's not the same thing. Do you know that the baker refused to bake this customer a birthday cake or to sell a cupcake? No, you don't know that. Refusal to sell anything based on a prejudice is one thing. Refusal to bake a cake for a specific event is another thing. For you to assume that the shop refused based on sexual preference is incorrect.

    I suppose this whole thing could have not been a problem had the baker just said "I don't feel like it", with no specific reason. But good for him for standing for his own values...I'd hope every single one of us can stand up for ourselves. It's not like this bake shop is a govt agency that is obligated to serve everyone in the populace.

    As for your silly roads/education comment...you might as well say that since the shop's employees attended public schools the shop is obligated to provide services even if the customer refuses to pay for it. No Shoes, No Shirt, No Problem! Come on in and I'll give you what you want. Last I checked refusal to serve customers is a right of the business just as those customers have the right to choose to take their $$ to someone else.

  • bassoonlady OREM, UT
    June 7, 2018 12:45 p.m.

    The saying"walk a mile in my shoes" might serve very well here.
    Imagine you are the couple. You've been loyal to a bakery for years, are excited to get married, and are told by the baker that your choice of spouse makes you ineligible for him to bake you a cake. You would feel embarrassed, perhaps humiliated, betrayed, hurt.
    In the other hand, imagine you are the baker. You have been taught a religious code and have striven your whole life to follow it, including in your business. You sincerely believe that following this code is your only way to heaven, and you would rather loose your business and livelihood than break it. A man you've done business with in the past comes and asks you to support an event celebrating the breaking of this all important code with a custom cake. How do you feel?
    There needs to be respect on both sides. It's sad that we require laws to force us to have common respect for eachother.
    Something else to note here, this baker refused to make anti-gay cakes as well. Should he be forced to make them? Just a thought to throw out there.

  • Susan Quinton Draper, UT
    June 7, 2018 12:25 p.m.

    Dmorgan, what book do you use to justify your hostility and intolerance towards religion? If you believe in humanism, how do you explain the “rational” belief that millions of your fellow humans are wrong? And please explain the history, reason, and logic behind your beliefs.

    My father taught us, while growing up in the melting pot of the Middle East, that all religions have truth, and all people are to be respected and loved. My sister lived that belief of tolerance and love while LGBT folks were throwing rocks at her as she entered her LDS temple in CA, I lived it while working, my cousin who is an MD and lives with his gay partner in one of the most conservative states in America (Texas) lives it as well. Tolerance is a two-way street, and there are many of us who appreciate this ruling and also love our LGBT friends and family.

  • Ranch Here, UT
    June 7, 2018 12:23 p.m.

    Frank Walters says:

    "this baker did not discriminate against the customer, I'm not sure it was said anywhere that he would not bake for them. He did not want to bake a cake for their wedding. There is a difference, even if you still disagree with his actions."

    --- Frank, when you refuse to do something for a gay customer that you would do for EVERY straight customer that walks through your door - when they are doing the EXACT SAME thing - i.e. getting married and buying a cake, then you are discriminating against the gay couple, not for the "event" but for WHO it is holding the event. That he offered a cupcake in lieu of a wedding cake does not make less discriminatory.

    If taxpayers subsidize the business by educating their employees, building the roads used for raw material and end product deliveries, subsidizing their fire and police protective services, shouldn't those taxpayers expect to be served by the businesses they subsidize?

    Why should a gay person have to "go somewhere else" when you don't have to?

  • SorryNotSorry Draper, UT
    June 7, 2018 12:20 p.m.

    Some very astute commentators in here and others who would use the government to control other people.

    Only one party in the Masterpiece case was exerting aggression or control over the other; that was the gay couple.

    Masterpiece was not trying to force the couple to live a certain way, affect their livelihood, or otherwise take their life, liberty & property?

    Could it be demeaning? Sure, I'll give people that. Have you ever walked into a business to have them quote something and feel like the whole experience was demeaning for how you were treated because you were not their typical clientele or because you were too small for their specific products or services? or their prices too high?

    In this case, Masterpiece's life, liberty and property were threatened by the couple. They were exerting FORCE over them to make them do something they didn't want to do or have the Colorado Commission take their property (by means of fines) for their decisions.

    Who should we favor? Absolutely, 100% the person who did nothing to be the aggressor against the other.

    We should punish people for aggressing against life, liberty and property of others, not because they simply disagree.

  • illuminated Kansas City, MO
    June 7, 2018 11:57 a.m.

    "I have to wonder if James Madison foresaw the weaponization of the rights of religious belief that he wrote into the 1st amendment?"

    I wonder the same thing. People defending immigrants who support the subjugation of women, take child brides, through Islamic Shariah, or murder and rape in the name of Allah.

    But let's all point in shock and outrage at the 3 Christian bakeries around the country for refusing to bake a cake as "weaponization of religious belief".

    Do you even hear yourself?

  • Bloodhound Provo, UT
    June 7, 2018 11:45 a.m.

    I agree with the Supreme Court decision. I fully support Alliance Defending Freedom and their work defending religious freedom. I'm thrilled they won this case for their client. Religious people need to stick together. Secular humanists seem determined to drive us out of the public square.

  • zgomer Salt Lake City, UT
    June 7, 2018 11:42 a.m.

    There is never going to be a balance, the LGBT community will always want to keep pushing their agenda no matter what all in the name of playing the victims...

  • NeifyT Salt Lake City, UT
    June 7, 2018 11:41 a.m.

    I disagree with the headline and premise of the article; though I did not read the entire article.

    There is nothing very hard about striking a balance. It just takes a bit of logical analysis of the civil rights laws currently in place and the reason those laws were written. Then the "balance" needed becomes plain as day; easy to understand and easy to apply.

    Why do we have such laws in the first place? Because large groups of minority status individuals have been discriminated against based solely on their status. Such as African Americans have been discriminated against solely on their skin color; or LGBTQ solely on their orientation; or Mormons solely on their religion.

    Yet, "discrimination" is the manner in which humans distinguish differences and make choices based on those differences.

    We should honor everyone's rights to make choices including the freedom to express oneself (be it sexually, religiously, politically, etc.) and choose whom to or not to associate with. How do we balance out when people's choices are different? Simply this. It should be illegal to make decisions based on individual characteristics; but legal for their behavior; as I described previously.

  • Ranch Here, UT
    June 7, 2018 11:41 a.m.

    @Redshirt:

    "... if a black, gay, or person of another religion wants you to produce something to celebrate an event you find morally wrong is that discrimination?"

    -- Absolutely.

    "For example, should a black person be forced to make something for the KKK? Should a gay person be forced to print tee-shirts for an anti-gay rally? Should a Muslim be forced to prepare food for a passover feast?"

    --- If that is what their businesses are doing for others then yes.

    "You will cry discrimination when it helps you, but what about when it doesn't?"

    ---- Isn't that what you are doing? Crying the baker is being discriminated against by the gays (completely ignoring the FACT that he refused to sell them a product he would sell to any straight customer), you support discrimintion, as long as the customer is gay.

    @windsor;

    2/3's of Utahns DID NOT have the right to vote on the rights of LGBT couples in the first place - so, as the courts rightly determined, the "vote" was not Legal as it violated the US Constitutions guarantee of equal protections for all citizens.

    @3grandslams;

    What civility? You're still trying to discriminate against us and have it legal.

  • Frank Walters Salt Lake City, UT
    June 7, 2018 11:36 a.m.

    @ranch - this baker did not discriminate against the customer, I'm not sure it was said anywhere that he would not bake for them. He did not want to bake a cake for their wedding. There is a difference, even if you still disagree with his actions.

    If consumers are allowed to exercise rights to not frequent a business then shouldn't the business be allowed to do the same? If I choose to not buy from a business that supports things I disagree with should the business be allowed to sue me? So how am I allowed to sue a business owner for doing the same thing?

    The real problem is that this has become a stubborn mess rather than just going to find a cake shop that would bake you a cake. Today's world is too litigious, we need to resolve that problem and move on. Days past this would result in a fight under the bleachers after school, today we prefer to complain to the courts to solve our problems. And I'm not advocating violence against the business in question but rather just go take your business elsewhere...you're winning from the standpoint that your dollars are supporting someone else.

  • Johnny Triumph Salt Lake City, UT
    June 7, 2018 11:31 a.m.

    This decision did only one thing...it only said to not show any religious bias when issuing a ruling. That's it. It does nothing to uphold a business's right to withhold services based on a religious conflict.

  • Values Voter LONG BEACH, CA
    June 7, 2018 11:21 a.m.

    @ winsor

    "Except the will of Utah citizens -- a 2/3rd majority of them in fact-- in regard to what constitutes a marriage had ... their legal vote nullified and overturned. . . "

    That was a snapshot of the Utah electorate back in 2004. That 2/3 majority, if recent polling is to be believed, has been reduced to roughly 1/2 these fourteen years later. (Like polling nationwide, opposition to the recognition of the right of same-sex couples to marry decreases by about 1% - 2% a year, Utah is no different).

    Is there any doubt, as the world spins forward, and with the views of younger Utahans coming to the fore, what a future vote would look like?

  • Sanefan Wellsville, UT
    June 7, 2018 11:19 a.m.

    Why would you want to financially support a person or business that was opposed to what you are/represent. Go somewhere else. I'm sure there are gay bakers/business owners, Black, Asian, Christian, Jewish Muslim, Atheist, and the list goes on and on forever. If they don't like you fine, move on. I just saw a FB post of a business that has a sign that reads, "We don't Serve People Who Voted for Trump!" Great. That is their right. Deal with it folks. Just too many people seek to be offended and play the victim role.

  • Kevin J. Kirkham Salt Lake City, UT
    June 7, 2018 11:10 a.m.

    The bottom line is that it all boils down to 3 choices -

    1. I prefer the libertarian option where a business owner can refuse to sell to anyone for any reason...even if it means a Catholic barber refusing to clip LDS missionaries.

    2. OTOH, the state could require ALL businesses to not discriminate for any reason forcing a Black baker to bake a KKK themed cake.

    3. Business owners, though being required to sell normal products and services to all, may refuse to provide customized ones. This would allow bakers to refuse to make a cake for a SSM, allow designers to refuse to dress Melania, allow actors to turn down certain rolls, etc... This one seems to me to be a reasonable compromise.

    I still prefer option #1, but #3 is fair and any instance of anyone being unable to get a customized product or service because all of the providers of that product or service dislike the customer's religion, politics, LGBT status, etc... should be extremely rare.

    Let's support this moderate idea.

  • Daedalus, Stephen ARVADA, CO
    June 7, 2018 11:08 a.m.

    @windsor: "...the will of [2/3 of] Utah citizens... in regard to what constitutes a marriage had their 'unique will' ...and their legal vote nullified and overturned because a judge didn't like how they voted."

    Lest anyone believe this actually happened...

    The 10th Cir. in.Kitchens and later SCOTUS in Obergefell held that comprehensive bans on same-sex marriages of the sort adopted by Utah voters violated the rights of American citizens protected by the 14th Amend of the U.S. Constitution.

    In contrast, the status quo before and after Masterpiece is that Colorado's law does not violate any legally recognized Constitutional rights. Full stop.

    Not for want of trying.

    Masterpiece and its advocates argued that its rights under 2 clauses of the First Amendment were violated by a public accommodations law that included sexual orientation as a protected class without an express exemption to allow for religious-based refusals.

    SCOTUS implicitly rejected that argument by reaffirming its long-standing precedent, where applied properly, enforcement of religiouslly neutral laws of generally applicability do not violate a business owners First Amendment rights.

  • n8ive american Shelley, Idaho
    June 7, 2018 10:53 a.m.

    A while back, there was another religion based lawsuit in the news. A Muslim man had taken a job at a grocery store and worked the register. He refused to handle pork products or alcohol that came down his line. He was fired for not doing his job. He won a lawsuit against the company because they violated his religious beliefs. So, why should this Muslim get to use his religion as an excuse, but not the baker, photographer or florist? Were there not OTHER bakers, photographers or florists available? Or were these businesses targeted BECAUSE they knew of the beliefs of these business owners and wanted to punish them and get rewarded for it? They had the choice to go somewhere else.

  • Husker2 Apache Junction, AZ
    June 7, 2018 10:45 a.m.

    This is simple. If someone can prove that their religious rights would be violated performing a specific service or selling a specific product, they should not be forced by the government to do it.

    In the case of a Christian baker, his/her Scriptures specifically address the sin of homosexuality. Those same Scriptures do not say that being black is a sin, therefore the Christian baker cannot refuse to serve a customer based on skin color.

  • Daedalus, Stephen ARVADA, CO
    June 7, 2018 10:39 a.m.

    @Paul in MD: "Religious objections to an event (same-sex marriage) don't rise to [the] level ... [of] discrimination by a business ... declining to serve a [protected] class of people."

    This is likely not the case.

    Masterpiece bakery made this same argument, claiming that refusal to serve an event is distinguishable from unlawful discrimination against the individuals who participate in the event.

    SCOTUS did not consider this question, leaving the unanimous opinion of a 3-member panel of the Colorado Court of Appeals as the final word as far as Masterpiece goes.

    That court does a deep dive for why this is a distinction without a difference.

    They cite 50 years of SCOTUS precedent to hold that refusal to serve a SSM-related event unlawfully discriminates against those individuals in a protected class under CO public accommodations law who participate, near-exclusively, in SSMs (same-sex couples).

    For the folks stating as fact that a refusal based on SSM is legally distinguishable from discrimination against same-sex individuals, please explain how CO Court of Appeals erred. Their opinion is linked on the Masterpiece page on SCOTUSblog.

  • Jacobiuntherus Salt Lake City, UT
    June 7, 2018 10:39 a.m.

    @Ranch:

    I don't know you from Adam, but I suspect at some time or another you have been hurt by someone who does not share your perspective about homo-sexual lifestyle or same-sex marriage. Possibly you have even faced severe rejection by family - which I personally find to be unconscionable. We can hold our religious beliefs and still love others even though their choices are different than our own.

    Friend, I believe the answer for all of us is to seek to build bridges of understanding and fairness to all parties. Consider that a "win-win" outcome really is better than a "win-lose" outcome for either party in this debate.

    Now past hurts are difficult to let go of - I know because I have had my fair share of hurts in my life too - you are not alone. But moving forward, the only successful pathway will be for finding some common ground and respecting the needs of others as well as our own - in my opinion.

  • Dmorgan Herriman, UT
    June 7, 2018 10:37 a.m.

    I have to wonder if James Madison foresaw the weaponization of the rights of religious belief that he wrote into the 1st amendment?

    I have to ask those whose “sincerely held religious beliefs” justify discrimination or hostility towards LGBTQ, to please, in the interest of understanding, elucidate the history, reason, and logic behind this belief. What is its source, and how did you come to the reasonable conclusion that this belief is a rational way to treat your fellow humans? If you use the Bible as a reference in your argument, please explain why, again so that the secular among us can understand, the LGBTQ are singled out for discrimination when so many, many other biblical prohibitions are no longer considered to be relevant by people who value the Bible as the inerrant word of God?

    Will anyone accept the challenge?

    As a secularist and humanist, it’s difficult to treat this “belief” with any semblance of respect, as the justification in any rational way, to adherence to this belief, is absurd. The Colorado Civil Rights Commission was censored for using language hostile to religious belief. In this case, I don’t think their language was strong enough.

  • NoNamesAccepted St. George, UT
    June 7, 2018 10:34 a.m.

    @Ranch: "Producing a product or service for something, that is the core of your business, is NOT now and never will be "participating" in it. "

    Who are you or the courts to decide what is or isn't the core of my business? Would you force the baker to make a custom cake to celebrate Halloween or divorces? Isn't the core of his business "custom cakes"?

    If he can limit the core of his business to exclude cakes that celebrate Halloween, divorces, and bigoted events (and maybe even Mormon missionary efforts), why can't he also homosexual celebrations? A divorce lawyer can represent only women.

    Are you going to tell me that a wedding photographer or planner is not intimately involved in the event? That a reception center owner/operator is not attending and supporting the event?

    Do you want homosexuals to be treated like everyone else who are subject to having small business owners decline to support their message/event? Or do you demand special treatment for sexual minorities?

    I support adding sexual orientation (and lawful possession of a gun) to Utah's retail anti-discrimination laws. But only if we also respect the rights of message-based producers to decline events.

  • NoNamesAccepted St. George, UT
    June 7, 2018 10:25 a.m.

    @Karen R:
    "Find the guy next door who is happy to participate."

    >>He said to the black people at the diner counter.

    Your solution enshrines inequality,

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    June 7, 2018 10:10 a.m.

    To "Ranch" and if a black, gay, or person of another religion wants you to produce something to celebrate an event you find morally wrong is that discrimination?

    For example, should a black person be forced to make something for the KKK? Should a gay person be forced to print tee-shirts for an anti-gay rally? Should a Muslim be forced to prepare food for a passover feast?

    You will cry discrimination when it helps you, but what about when it doesn't?

  • windsor Logan, UT
    June 7, 2018 10:10 a.m.

    Daedalus, Stephen said: "Lost in the shuffle and kerfuffle is how many states have already addressed these issues via legislation. States have been long viewed as "laboratories of democracy" where the unique will of their respective citizens produce a range of solutions"

    Except the will of Utah citizens -- a 2/3rd majority of them in fact-- in regard to what constitutes a marriage had their 'unique will' (as you say) and their legal vote nullified and overturned because a judge didn't like how they voted.

  • Daedalus, Stephen ARVADA, CO
    June 7, 2018 9:51 a.m.

    Lost in the shuffle and kerfuffle is how many states have already addressed these issues via legislation.

    States have been long viewed as "laboratories of democracy" where the unique will of their respective citizens produce a range of solutions, the best of which get adopted and adapted by other states.

    For example, unlike Colorado, Utah's public accommodations law does not list sexual-orientation as a protected class. The Masterpiece scenario simply cannot happen in Utah and other states where gays and lesbians have no legal recourse if they are refused service by any business for any reason.

    And unlike Colorado, some states passed laws codifying the "religious freedom" exemption that Masterpiece wanted SCOTUS to judicially impose on all states. These are state-level versions of the federal Religious Freedom Resoration Act (RFRA), passed in response to the greater deference to the government afforded by SCOTUS in Empl. Div. v Smith (1990, Scalia).

    The different legislative solutions of CO and UT are both constitutional.

    Practically, this means advocates for one approach over another must compete in the marketplace of ideas, without the Court's thumb on the scales.

  • 3grandslams Eagle Mountain, UT
    June 7, 2018 9:48 a.m.

    The LGBT community needs to be careful or they'll lose any progress made on civility. The line needs to be seen that they could have purchased anything from the store and the owner would have been happy to sell. However, when asking the owner to put his name and company on a same gender marriage event, that crosses the line because his business is no longer selling baked goods but potentially becomes social commentary and a social endorsement.

    No on should be forced to endorse something they don't believe in. Musicians, politicians, thespians, and a myriad of other entities withdraw endorsement when they disagree with a policy, behavior or even a persons political persuasions. Certainly a person has a constitutional right to not endorse something they have a religious conflict with.

    If the LGBT community continues to seek a winner take all attitude, they'll lose a lot more public support.

  • Paul in MD Montgomery Village, MD
    June 7, 2018 9:42 a.m.

    Discrimination by a business would be declining to serve a class of people in all transactions, like when restaurants would not serve blacks.

    Religious objections to an event (same-sex marriage) don't rise to that level.

    If the baker were truly discriminatory, he would never sell anything to LGBT people. That's never been shown. He was declining to use his artistic talents to celebrate an event that ran contrary to his religious convictions.

    There is a similar case regarding a florist. In her case, a long-time regular customer came to her requesting special flowers for his wedding to his male partner. She apologized and declined due to her religious convictions, and is now fighting the same kind of lawsuit.

    In both cases, the vendor is refusing to participate in an event, not discriminating against a class of people.

  • FatherOfFour WEST VALLEY CITY, UT
    June 7, 2018 9:40 a.m.

    I'm perfectly ok with this decision. I would even expand it to other businesses like clothing shops, stores, craft shops, diners, whatever. All I ask is please post a sign up front. I don't want to walk around in your clothing shop, or bakery, or whatever for an hour and find exactly what I want only to be told that you won't sell it to me. Just put a sign up front that says "LGBT people not allowed." Or whatever other group you wish to exclude from your business. Just let us know so we don't waste our time.

  • Ranch Here, UT
    June 7, 2018 9:35 a.m.

    @NoNamesAccepted;

    Producing a product or service for something, that is the core of your business, is NOT now and never will be "participating" in it.

    dordrecht says:

    "It's best not to wear your religious convictions nor your sexuality on your sleeve."

    --- Is it "wearing your sexuality" on your sleeve when a heterosexual couple walks into a bakery to purchase their wedding cake? If not, then it isn't when a gay couple does it. It is, however, pretty obvious that they're a gay couple; that isn't easy to hide when you're purchasing the cake together.

    @illuminated;

    He also said to treat others as you'd have them treat you.

  • illuminated Kansas City, MO
    June 7, 2018 9:06 a.m.

    "And THIS IS LOVE, that we walk after his commandments. This is the commandment, That, as ye have heard from the beginning, ye should walk in it. If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds."

    2 John 1:6,10-11

  • illuminated Kansas City, MO
    June 7, 2018 9:05 a.m.

    In every single one of these cases, LGBT activists purposefully went out of their way to find Christian business owners to sue. These aren't random, organic situations that just happened by accident. They could have found dozens of other companies who would have been more than happy to cater to their request.

    Remember the pizzeria in rural Indiana that news reporters found just after Governor Pence had signed the religious liberty law? You think that was just a happy coincidence? Do a google Search for Sweet Cakes bakery, the one that was sued into oblivion by the state of Oregon. There are at least a dozen other custom bakery shops within 2 miles of this location that would have baked a gay wedding cake.

    This is not like Jim Crow. This is not the 1950s again. This is deliberate persecution of Christians. And shame on the media and other organizations for disguising this as something sinister fomented by Christians.

    The "balance" is very easy if these leftist activists stop attacking Christians.

  • dordrecht Salt Lake City, UT
    June 7, 2018 9:03 a.m.

    It's best not to wear your religious convictions nor your sexuality on your sleeve. After all, it's nobody's business but your own. In most cases, actions show who you are, and when it comes to baking a cake, bake your own. It's sometimes better than store-bought, and it's fresh!

  • Karen R. Houston, TX
    June 7, 2018 8:58 a.m.

    @ NoNames

    "Find the guy next door who is happy to participate."

    He said to the black people at the diner counter.

    Your solution enshrines inequality, NoNames. It asks gay couples and only gay couples to accept less than equal treatment in the marketplace. At least The Rock's solution includes equality for gay couples.

    @ The Rock

    SCOTUS won't like your second condition any more than it liked what the CO Civil Rights Commission did. Just as it rejects hostility/animus towards believers, it rejects it towards all others too. Also, these people seeking a conscience waiver are insisting they feel no hostility or animus towards their gay customers. Just like the CO Commission, you're suggesting they aren't being sincere. (Or maybe they are, but the Commission would've been right had it been you before them?)

    @ Meckofahess

    Thank you for your generous thoughts.

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    June 7, 2018 8:42 a.m.

    @Mayfair
    "What if they decide that we WILL BE COMPELLED to be involved with something that we do not want to be involved with?

    What then??"

    It's not that long ago that less than 2/3rds of Americans supported interracial marriage (around the yr 2000). We have laws against discrimination based on race so I imagine that however they deal with having to serve people in relationships they dislike is pretty much how this would go.

  • Daedalus, Stephen ARVADA, CO
    June 7, 2018 8:41 a.m.

    DN continues trying to make a silk purse from a sow's ear.

    SCOTUS merely reaffirmed existing First Amendment analysis for cases where a business owner seeks a religion-based exemption
    from an anti-discrimination statute. No more, no less.

    In Employment Div. v. Smith (1990, Scalia), SCOTUS held that "[g]enerally applicable, religion-neutral laws that have the effect of burdening a particular religious practice need not be justified by a compelling government interest". This lowered the threshold for upholding rulings against businesses such as Masterpiece.

    But here, SCOTUS held that the government did not -apply- the law in the "religion-neutral" manner. Rightly or wrongly (see RBG dissent), SCOTUS held that the commission's review of the ALJ's ruling against the baker was not "religion-neutral" due to specific words and analogies used by two commissioners. Thus its remarkably limited holding: those words = not neutral.

    Masterpiece does NOT require some new heightened consideration of religious objections to SSM. Nor any new requirement to "balance" interests of a protected class under state law and the religious beliefs of business owners.

    DN just muddies the water.

  • Flipphone Sandy, UT
    June 7, 2018 8:26 a.m.

    I'm sure that there are bakers who have no problem baking a gay couple a wedding cake.

  • Meckofahess Salt Lake City, UT
    June 7, 2018 8:24 a.m.

    @Karen R:

    I have taken issue with you many times over the years because I thought some of you assertions were imbalanced and biased toward objectivity. At the same time I often have observed that your comments were well thought out even if I disagreed with them. The comment you made today is so profound I believe it deserves to be quoted again (below).

    I wholeheartedly agree with your comments and I commend you for standing up for balance and reasonableness! Thank you for being open to looking at the heartache experienced by both sides in this difficult but important issue.

    "Gay couples should be respectful of shop owners who agree to sell, but inform them of the personal difficulty this causes because of religious beliefs. To compel them to sell anyway just because you have the power of the law behind you is treating them the same way you were once treated. Don't be spiteful. Thank the shop owner for their honesty and move on. You don't want a product from someone who doesn't want to make it anyway".

  • Mayfair Logan, UT
    June 7, 2018 8:11 a.m.

    Flashback said: "I hate to agree with anything Ginsburg says, but she was correct. The court ducked the real issue, which is: did the bakery have the right not to make them a cake because of religious objections to their lifestyle? That is the question that should have been decided. The decision was a short punt that went out of bounds. They will have to decide this at some point. Should have been done on this case."

    When I read this, I thought about What if the Supreme Court DID decide this time--or decides in the future??

    What if they decide that we WILL BE COMPELLED to be involved with something that we do not want to be involved with?

    What then??

    I for one am just saying I already have a whole selection of ideas to get around this, if the Supreme Court ever thinks they are going to remove my freedom and compel me.

  • Moderate Salt Lake City, UT
    June 7, 2018 8:09 a.m.

    "focused on the behavior of members of the Colorado Civil Rights Commission"
    Basically this case boiled down to "members of the commission were rude".
    They could repeat the same steps, and if the commission "is nice", they could rule the same way -- that the baker must make the cake.

    The solution for this case is a carefully worded script for the commission to read when someone says "it is against my religious beliefs". Something like "I hear you. I respect you, and I will give your words strong consideration" before they reject the defense.

  • Yorkshire Logan, UT
    June 7, 2018 7:39 a.m.

    One thing we were talking about this issue was Which is it LGBT actually want??
    The wedding cake?
    Or those who disagree with them to be compelled to do the cake, and punished if they refuse?

    We know an LDS family in a state where LDS are very unpopular who wanted their kids to be in a big popular soccer league run by a large church that was not LDS. The parents knew another LDS who had applied to work at this same church's big preschool and that they would not hire her expressly because she was LDS. So the soccer parents determined they were not announcing their LDS status----- but just as people who wanted their kids in a good program. They got in, had a wonderful time and loved the experience with people who didn't know.

    Point is, if what LGBT want is the actual cake (like the soccer league) just order a cake and don't broadcast you are gay.

    Our friends didn't want to upset others with their status of LDS membership.
    And it worked.
    They were selective with who they revealed this to--And for those who they knew would be offended or upset about it, they just kept quiet.
    Inspiration led to knowing who would be interested in knowing.

    Seems rational for LGBT to do too.

  • bamafone Salem, UT
    June 7, 2018 7:36 a.m.

    Hate to break the news, but the baker won his case, freedom is still alive.

  • The Rock Federal Way, WA
    June 7, 2018 7:35 a.m.

    I used to publish a K-12 Homeschool curriculum. I purchased advertising in a homeschooling magazine. About half way through the year they informed me that they were dropping my account because I also published an LDS version. I nearly had to sue them to get a refund on the unused balance I had paid them.
    Later I was contacted by the HomeSchool Legal Defense Association. I informed them that I was Mormon and they retracted their offer to sell me advertising. This was essentially a law firm.

    Religious discrimination is alive and well.

    If I were a baker or flourist or photographer, my standard contract would have two special provisions:

    1. I retain the right to sub contract any job for any reason.
    2. The profits from any job related to a same sex wedding would be donated to a Christian ministry that works to cure same sex attraction.

    This is completely within any law and provision 2 should be enough to get the customers to voluntarily seek another supplier.

  • Thid Barker Victor, ID
    June 7, 2018 7:31 a.m.

    No, this will NOT be a difficult balance! If I wanted to marry another man and wanted a wedding cake, I would go to any of the dozens of businesses that would accommodate my needs, not to one that won't, then howl in protest about the one! Its call FREEDOM!

  • NoNamesAccepted St. George, UT
    June 7, 2018 7:19 a.m.

    There is an easy compromise readily available. It has been in place for a long time. We just have to recognise it.

    1-No discrimination in accessing general goods and services.

    2-No compelled speech or support for messages one doesn't want to support.

    No one get to deny general goods and services to anyone. But they can decline to participate in a GOP campaign, an LDS missionary event, or a homosexual wedding.

    Actors and others are free to turn down work they don't like. No one has to take a role in or work the set of a Christian film for families, a porn movie, or even the latest super hero movie.

    Law firms and ad agencies routinely specialize in one side of an issue: pro-religious freedom, freedom from religion, pro-environment, multi-access, men's rights in divorce, women's equality.

    Most people look long and hard for the photographer, baker, and reception,center that are the right fit for their wedding. Lots of reasons one person or business isn't a good fit. Nothing new or discriminatory if a few are not a good fit for a homosexual wedding.

    Find the guy next door who is happy to participate. Save lawsuits for buying gas, renting an apartment or getting a job.

  • Flashback Kearns, UT
    June 7, 2018 7:10 a.m.

    I hate to agree with anything Ginsburg says, but she was correct. The court ducked the real issue, which is: did the bakery have the right not to make them a cake because of religious objections to their lifestyle? That is the question that should have been decided. The decision was a short punt that went out of bounds. They will have to decide this at some point. Should have been done on this case.

    There is no question that the Colorado Civil Rights Commission was out of bounds. Quazi judicial groups like this are not constitutional and should be abolished.

    However, the two guys who wanted the cake should have just voted with their feet and gone somewhere else to get the cake and, told all their friends. Simple economics at work. Don't like the service, don't shop there.

  • Ranch Here, UT
    June 7, 2018 6:51 a.m.

    We don't allow businesses to use religion to discriminate against blacks.

    We don't allow businesses to use religion to discriminate against those of other religions.

    We shouldn't allow businesses to use religion to discriminate against LGBT customers either.

    Religion isn't an excuse for discrimination.

  • Karen R. Houston, TX
    June 7, 2018 6:13 a.m.

    "In the Masterpiece Cakeshop ruling, the justices provided few clues as to how they would rule in a future case..."

    It seemed pretty clear to me. Unless a gay couple is asking for a design or symbol that expresses a specific message beyond "this is a wedding cake," the baker must make the cake (or choose not to sell wedding cakes to anyone).

    I also hear in the opinion three other things:

    1) Government has a legitimate interest in laws against discrimination in the marketplace;

    2) Governmental bodies must be professional and neutral when considering a case involving religious beliefs (I don't think that's a lot to ask); and

    3) Gay couples should be respectful of shop owners who agree to sell, but inform them of the personal difficulty this causes because of religious beliefs. To compel them to sell anyway just because you have the power of the law behind you is treating them the same way you were once treated. Don't be spiteful. Thank the shop owner for their honesty and move on. You don't want a product from someone who doesn't want to make it anyway.

  • Chessermesser West Valley City, UT
    June 7, 2018 5:26 a.m.

    It’s really simple. You shouldn’t force an artist to do something, which he doesn’t want to.. Is Wicca going to sue the baker, because he won’t make a special Halloween cake?

    I think all artists in the future are going to give another, less truthful reason, why they can’t do something special. That’s what this whole mess has caused. Instead of saying, “I’m sorry, but I don’t believe in gay marriage and can’t decorate your cake”, people will say other things like “You know, I can’t commit to that. I might have a conflict in scheduling, but won’t know for another month.” The potential customer will find another specialist, instead of waiting another month to find out if the artist really does have that conflict.

    Is the baker now going to get sued to determine if he really had a scheduling conflict? No, of course not. Scheduling conflicts will be the way out of all such messes from now on.