Blog Post – How Much More Evidence Do We Need That These Bills Are Bad?
Probably the first case that we heard about was that of New Mexico’s Elane Photography. The Christian husband/wife business owners had turned away a lesbian couple who wanted them to photograph their same-sex commitment ceremony. Homosexual “marriage” was illegal in New Mexico at the time of the lesbians’ request, but the legislature had added “sexual orientation” to the state’s anti-discrimination laws. Thus, the road had been created for the discrimination complaint against the photographers to be filed with the New Mexico Civil Rights Commission. That was back in 2006. At every turn the courts found the Hugenins guilty of discrimination. In 2013 the New Mexico Supreme Court upheld the lower court ruling against Jon and Elaine Hugenin; in fact, Justice Richard C. Bosson said Christians must “compromise” their religious beliefs as “the price of citizenship.” In 2014 the US Supreme Court refused to hear the case! The Hugenins were fined nearly $7000, which is peanuts compared to some of the fines we see levied against Christian business owners now.
- California — Nang and Chris Mai operate Urloved Photography–that is, until recently, when the couple announced that it was discontinuing its business due to harassment from homosexual advocates over making a referral rather than agreeing to shoot a same-sex ceremony.
- Colorado — Masterpiece Cakes was found guilty of discriminating against a homosexual couple for refusing to bake a “wedding” cake for their reception. The state’s Civil Rights Commission also demands staff training and the bakery must issue quarterly reports for two years in order to ensure that it is complying with its ruling.
- Hawaii — First Circuit Court ruled that the owner of Aloha Bed & Breakfast violated state law when she told two lesbians she was not comfortable having them stay together in her home because of her religious beliefs. the Hawaii Civil Rights Commission joined the lawsuit and hailed the decision as upholding the state’s civil rights law.
- Iowa — The owners of a gift shop and bistro who refused to hold a same-sex wedding at their business have stopped doing weddings altogether. Lee Stafford and Jared Ellers had filed their complaint with the Iowa Civil Rights Commission.
- Kentucky — Hands on T-shirts has been found guilty by Lexington’s Human Rights Commission of discriminating against homosexuals because of their refusal to make t-shirts for the local gay pride parade. All employees of the company must go through sensitivity training.
- New York — Owners of Liberty Ridge Farm found guilty of discriminating against a lesbian couple for refusing to allow their same-sex “wedding” to take place on the farm. They must pay a $13,000 fine and provide their staff with sensitivity training. The farm has decided they will no longer host weddings or wedding receptions.
- Oregon — Sweet Cakes by Melissa owners have been found guilty of discriminating against a lesbian couple for not baking their “wedding” cake. Next month it will be determined just how much the fine will be, but they may be forced to pay the two women up to $75,000 per person who filed the complaint.
- Vermont — Wildflower Inn and a lesbian couple have settled a lawsuit that accused the business of refusing to host the couple’s “wedding” reception. The Inn agreed to pay $10,000 civil penalty to the Vermont Human Rights Commission and to place $20,000 in a charitable trust. The inn also agreed to no longer host weddings and their receptions.
- Washington state — a judge has determined the elderly owner of Arlene’s Flowers and Gifts can be held personally liable for violating the Consumer Protection Act and the Washington Law Against Discrimination. Sixty-nine year old Barronelle Stutzman refused to provide flowers for a homosexual couple’s “wedding” and now she faces losing not only her business, but her home as well.
In each of the above cases, the state has added “sexual orientation” to its anti-discrimination laws which impact public accommodations. Additionally, in each of the above cases, the business owners serve homosexuals, but refuse to celebrate “gay pride,” their same-sex “marriage” by baking cakes, providing flowers or hosting the event, etc. In the case of Barronelle Stutzman, the homosexual filing the complaint is one of her long-time customers!
The effort has begun again here in PA to get a similar bill passed. In the State House liberal Democrat Dan Frankel (Allegheny County) and liberal Republican Chris Ross ( Delaware County) are circulating a co-sponsorship memo to resurrect HB 300 which would add “sexual orientation or gender identity or expression” to the PA Human Relations Act which impacts employment, housing and public accommodation. Over in the State Senate, Senator Patrick Browne (liberal Republican – Lehigh County) and Senator Lawrence Farnese (liberal Democrat – Philadelphia County) are circulating a co-sponsorship memo for SB 300.
Do you want the above scenarios to be recreated across Pennsylvania? Let your State Senator know what you think about SB 300! If you haven’t contacted your State Rep about not co-sponsoring HB 300, click here to contact your State Rep.
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