Kennewick Debates Religious Freedom, Attorney General Misrepresents It

Last night, the Kennewick City Council discussed a non-binding resolution involving religious freedom in front of a standing room only crowd.  The resolution, sponsored by Kennewick City Councilman John Trumbo, calls on Attorney General Bob Ferguson to drop his lawsuit against Arlene’s Flowers and asks the legislature to protect conscience rights and religious freedom.

A similar resolution has also been introduced in the Pasco city Council by Councilman Bob Hoffman.

In advance of that committee meeting, Attorney General Bob Ferguson sent a letter to Mr. Trumbo and Mr. Hoffman that was published in the Tri-City Herald. 

That letter, the full text of which can be seen below, contains a number of statements that deserve a response. (larger light green text is excerpts from the letter)

[Barronelle Stutzman and her attorneys]  claim that Arlene’s Flowers should be allowed to serve those customers whom Ms. Stutzman’s religion approves of, and exclude those whom it does not.

It is hard to view this statement as anything other than willful dishonesty.  The Attorney General’s office has been litigating against Barronelle Stutzman for more than two years now.  In those two years, Barronelle Stutzman has repeatedly stated in depositions, in legal briefs, and in oral arguments that she was and is happy to serve people who identify as gay.  She has never denied service to someone because of their sexual orientation and she never will. She will sell flowers to gay people and even for gay weddings.  Her only objection is to providing floral services for a same-sex wedding, which would require her to be a personal participant in the wedding.

As the Supreme Court has long recognized, religious freedom is not the freedom to discriminate against others in the name of religion.

The Supreme Court has never taken this issue up.  Efforts by government to force people to be part of events they disagree with are very new because historically we have respected the rights of individuals not to be part of events they were uncomfortable with.  The New Mexico Supreme Court said that a photographer could be forced to take pictures of a same-sex wedding, but a Kentucky Court recently acknowledged that a printer has the right to decline to print t-shirts for a gay pride parade because he disagrees with that message.  This issue is far from settled, in fact it is just getting started.

Rather, [religious freedom] is the right to the freedom of worship, and to be free from discrimination because of our religion.

The First Amendment protects the “free exercise” of religion.  The version of the First Amendment which protects only the right to believe what you want and attend the church of your choice exists only in the minds of those who seek to control us, not in the Constitution.

If I go to a restaurant with my young twins to celebrate their First Communion, I should not have to worry about whether the restaurant will refuse to serve me because we are Catholic.

Of course everyone agrees with this.  However, if Mr. Ferguson and his young twins wanted the restaurant owner to cater their exorcism,  an atheist business owner should  have the right to decline to participate without fear of being sued for discrimination on the basis of religion.  After all, it is not the person requesting the service they object to, but the nature of the service requested.

Arlene’s Flowers refused to serve Mr. Freed and Mr. Ingersoll because they are gay.

As discussed above, this also is not true.  Arlene’s Flowers served Mr. Freed and Mr. Ingersoll for nine years knowing they were gay.  Arlene’s Flowers stands ready to serve them again. Arlene’s Flowers serves everyone, regardless of their sexual orientation.  But there are some events they are uncomfortable being part of.

Washington State law says that if a business chooses to provide a service to heterosexual customers it must provide that service to gay and lesbian customers.

Washington State law says no such thing.  It says only that you cannot discriminate on the basis of race, religions, gender, veteran status, sexual orientation, etc… Non-discrimination laws were created to make sure that businesses did not have explicit policies stating “No Jews”, “No Mexicans”, “No Mormons” or anything of the kind.  By happily and graciously serving everyone, Arlene’s Flowers abides by both the letter and the spirit of the law.

The Attorney General’s interpretation of the law means that the wedding industry is now off-limits to those who believe marriage is a relationship between a man and a woman.  America was created specifically in response to the environment in Europe where people had to hold a certain set of beliefs in order to have equal access to economic opportunity.

We must resist the attempts to impose a new state religion built around a specifically belief about sexuality.

The Kennewick City Council agreed to take this issue up at a future meeting.

As a result, this debate will continue in Kennewick and around the country.  It will continue because it is fundamental to who we are as a nation.  Will individuals enjoy the right of association and the free exercise of religion in the way we always have? Will we surrender those rights to a government desiring to control us in the name of tolerance?

The weakness of the Attorney General’s position is exposed by his need to repeatedly misrepresent Arlene’s Flowers position. If you have strong arguments, the truth is your friend.

Still, the outcome of this debate will not be determined by who has the greatest argument, but who has the strongest resolve.

To share your thoughts with Attorney General Ferguson about this letter or his lawsuit against Arlene’s Flowers, Call his office at 360-753-6200. Be respectful, but be heard.

Contact your legislators and ask them to protect conscience rights and religious freedom. You can email your legislators here or call the legislative hotline at 1-800-562-6000.

 

Below is the full letter from Attorney General Ferguson. Click on the images to enlarge.

AG Letter 1AG Letter 2

20 replies
  1. Bob B
    Bob B says:

    Joseph, you are wrong on all 6 points.

    The state civil rights laws say the customer can have full enjoyment of all services offered by the business, and this is not the case at Arlene’s Flowers. The owner applied a religious test that some customers have to pass to be able to buy some of the publicly offered services – in this case wedding floral arrangements. When this customer failed by having a kind of wedding that the owner’s religion doesn’t sanction, he was denied any enjoyment of this advertised service. That is against the law and the state constitution.

    The federal Supreme Court has ruled there can’t even be law that allows this kind of religious testing to purchase a publicly advertised service, 9-0 in the case of selling goats for slaughter – there can’t be a law that says someone can be denied the purchase because they are going to use the goat for religious sacrifice. Common sense really – the business owner’s religious freedom stops at the tip of the customer’s nose where their’s begins. The Fayetteville case the plaintiffs wasn’t gay, it wasn’t decided on sexual orientation discrimination. And again, please stop misrepresenting the issue – the New Mexico court said that the photography studio, not an particular photographer, has the obligation to fulfill the business’s public offer consistent with civil rights laws.

    Yes the first amendment protects the “free exercise” of religion, including the customers. Again, everyone has a right to this ‘free exercise” including those that think couples can have weddings regardless of their sexes. If the business owner can’t in good conscience sell wedding floral services to people of all beliefs as the laws require then they don’t have to offer those services to the public in the first place. Sell them as a private club or non-profit – that’s why these business models to engage in discrimination exist.

    And I’m sure you meant an atheist owned business, right? Why would it refuse to cater an exorcism – its just a bizarre party as far as they’re concerned. But they have the same solution as Arlene’s Flowers, let employees who don’t mind exorcisms go if the atheist employees refuse, hire a temp or 3rd party contract it out. I would think it would be the exorcists that wouldn’t want a non-believer there since many of the things that occur at such events would be valid excuses to call the police about those going ons.

    Yes, the business owner did cause the business to discriminate against the customers because they were gay. Again the requirement is ‘full enjoyment to all services’, and they were denied access to this service because of their creed, sex (of at least one of them) and their sexual orientation (since same-sex marriages are hand in hand with being gay – to paraphrase Justice Scalia said “a rule against yarmulkes is a rule against Jews”)

    And yes, Washington state law does say that “full enjoyment of all services” regardless of the customer’s sexual orientation is a civil right and required by law passed by popular vote.
    And no, the business owner can have any opinion about marriage and weddings they want as long as they run their business realizing every single customer responding to their public offer of sale has a civil right NOT to share those beliefs and engage in activities consistent with their beliefs and still do business with them. Most people run their businesses this way anyway, those driven to discriminate are definitely outliers.

    To state the obvious it is you who has consistently misrepresented the situation, setting up straw men to make your failing argument:

    1. Civil rights are requirement of the business, not any particular individual. Let someone else do the work, hire a temp, or 3rd party contract the gig out.

    2. The bar for civil rights is ‘full enjoyment of all services’, not just some, not almost all, but all.

    3. The owner ignored the civil rights of the customers by applying an illegal religious test the customer had to pass to actually purchase the voluntarily publicly advertised product. That is illegal and such excuses of conscience have no cover in the state constitution which explicitly says liberty of religious conscience is not an excuse to act without regard for the rights of others, in this case the customer’s civil right to be free from illegal discrimination in a public offer by a business.

    The AG’s letter was clear, concise, and spot on. New Mexico ruled against discrimination and it has a state RFRA, our state with its clear exclusion of using the excuse ‘religious conscience’ to break laws, and our laws themselves there is only one conclusion possible:

    The owner of Arlene’s Flowers LLC broke the law.
    (on the plus side received a windfall of money big enough to fund a retirement.)

    Reply
    • Arthur
      Arthur says:

      Bob B,
      Your post is wonderful and if you have Facebook, please consider posting this to the FPIW page as well. You’re unlikely to get a response at either site, but it will be read by even more people.

      Reply
  2. Saint John the Baptist
    Saint John the Baptist says:

    Arthur: You are going off the deep end, amigo. The issue has nothing to do with ‘human sacrifices’ and you know it. Your attempts at obfuscation are pathetic. What is bothersome is your lack of concern about the exercise of religious freedom as guaranteed by the First Amendment. Arlene’s DOES NOT have to participate in homosexual ‘weddings’ because that violates the owners Christian beliefs. If that sticks in your craw, too bad. Your track record regarding denying that Homosexuality is judged a sin by the Bible (use a capital ‘B’ to be taken seriously) makes me doubt you are a Christian and confirms to me you have ZERO knowledge of the Bible. There is no such thing as a homosexual ‘wedding’; that is like claiming an item is a ‘genuine counterfeit’. But don’t worry about what I think of you. You need to repent, accept Christ, and follow Him. I am through reading your excuses/denials/silliness based upon your willful ignorance. Get back to me when you get right with God. Don’t say I did not warn you of the eternal consequences if you don’t. Goodbye.

    Reply
    • a
      a says:

      SJTB, you still have a problem understanding the point. All you read is “human sacrifice”? Your ability to cherry pick is astounding. The point is that there are limits to religious freedom, and for good reason. You are free to believe what you want, but not do what you want. So Arlene’s is free to believe homosexual weddings are bad, but not free to offer wedding service (PARTICIPATION) to straights only.

      Of course Arlene’s DOES NOT have to participate in homosexual weddings. A racist baker DOES NOT have to bake a cake for an interracial wedding, either. There’s only a problem if they participate in straight weddings, or bake wedding cakes for whites. If that sticks in your craw, too bad.

      The issue is that I probably have a broader and better understanding of the bible than you do. You’ve shown that you have problems with reading comprehension. Where in the bible does it say homosexuality is wrong? Based on your ability to follow my comments, I’m guessing you’re misinterpreting those too.

      I’m sorry that it’s too hard for you to continue. That you find revealing your lack of knowledge exhausting. Exposing your ignorance (legal, biblical, conceptual awareness) is not presenting excuses/denials/silliness. I’m sure trying *sohard* to prove something you’re wrong about is difficult, but don’t transfer the blame.

      The end remains the same:
      A business can’t offer a service (participatory, which means to participate, included) to some people and not others because of their race, religion, disability, sexual orientation, etc. If they don’t want to offer it to those “other” people, then don’t offer it to anyone.
      The bible doesn’t condemn homosexuality. Even if it did, the bible doesn’t make our laws.
      Even if they are enacted with the best of intentions, religious freedom (as stated by you, FPIW) is a bad and dangerous idea.
      Religious freedom (in terms of how exercised) has (and has always had) limits for good reason.

      Peace, amigo.

      Reply
  3. Saint John the Baptist
    Saint John the Baptist says:

    Arthur: Your lack of knowledge of the Bible (capital ‘B’ by the way) betrays you. The Bible DOES state homosexuality is WRONG, PERIOD. ‘Differing opinions’ mean ZERO to God, if they did, He would be a pretty crappy God. The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution governs this nation. It includes the right to EXERCISE your faith. The government is attempting to have the owners of Arlene’s Flowers void her Christian beliefs in PARTICIPATING in a homosexual ‘wedding’. There is no weaseling out of that fact. Your ‘moral compass’ is next to the magnet of disbelief/ignorance of the Bible, rendering your headings worthless. Once again, you need to repent, turn to God and become ‘un-lost’. By the way; don’t worry about my opinion regarding whether or not you are a Christian; you have bigger fish to fry. When you meet God (and you will) after you die you will have to explain to Him where you belong in eternity based upon your acceptance or rejection of Christ’s salvation. Eternity is a long, long time, amigo. “Be still and know that I am God” – Psalm 46:10.

    Reply
    • Arthur
      Arthur says:

      Sorry about the capitols. So bothersome. Like reading the bible and realizing homosexuality is NOT wrong. PERIOD. Your differing opinion means ZILCH to god. :(

      The First Amendment governs this nation and it includes the right to EXERCISE your faith, so human sacrifices, polygamy and face covering veils in DL pics are ok. (by your standards, right?)

      If Arlene’s PARTICIPATES in Christian weddings they have to PARTICIPATE in Jewish, atheist, pagan, Hindu, etc weddings. If Arlene’s PARTICIPATES in straight weddings, they have to PARTICIPATE in gay weddings. If Arlene’s doesn’t want to PARTICIPATE in any of those weddings, don’t offer that service.

      What makes you think I’m a Christian…or not?

      Also, you keep using “homosexual ‘wedding'”. Do the quotes mean you don’t think of a homosexual wedding (or ‘wedding’ to you) as real?

      Likewise whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath, he cannot be my disciple. Luke 14:33
      Uh-oh, better give your computer (and everything else) to the poor. Or am I misunderstanding/ taking that passage out of context? Like you’re misunderstanding and taking out of context passages pertaining to homosexuality.

      Reply
  4. Saint John the Baptist
    Saint John the Baptist says:

    Arthur: You just don’t ‘get it’, do you? The reason you don’t, IMHO, is that you are ‘lost’ in the Biblical sense. You have no moral compass; no belief in God and His word (the Bible). You can’t comprehend that following Christ means doing same outside of church. The government cannot (and will not) cause Christians to void their Biblical beliefs. To think otherwise is delusional. As I stated before, the issue is not SERVICE but PARTICIPATION in a homosexual ‘wedding’. The Bible states that homosexuality is WRONG, PERIOD. Being a true Christian has nothing to do with the denomination one belongs to. Nice try at a red herring. This is not an issue of ‘doing whatever you want’. It is a matter of following Biblical teachings related to homosexuality. The truth hurts, amigo. Repent, get right with God, and become ‘un-lost’.

    Reply
    • Arthur
      Arthur says:

      Based on your previous statements, I’d hazard a guess my moral compass is more accurate than yours. But we can’t prove that either way, can we? I mean, unless you can determine that the same way you can determine a True Christian (TM)?

      I absolutely understand following Christ outside the church (just like I’ve understood PARTICIPATION from the beginning). If Arlene’s wants to ensure they’re following (their version of) Christ outside the church, all they have to do in NOT offer services that would require participation in a gay wedding.

      No act of government is trying to void anyone’s beliefs. No one forced Arlene’s to offer wedding participation services to straights only. That was their decision.

      The bible does NOT state that homosexuality is WRONG. PERIOD. I’ve got a whole bunch of explanations that I’ve written previously. You may refer to those. Also, try some research into differing opinions. It can be truly eye opening.

      Sure, being a True Christian (TM) might not be determined by denomination, but the sheer number of denominations demonstrates the vast number of interpretations and beliefs. Tens of thousands of beliefs and interpretations, and many of them believe the bible does NOT condemn homosexuality, or abortions, or that children disobedient to parents are worthy of death.

      And on the OFF chance the bible condemns homosexuality and overrides other verses (that I’ve previously mentioned. Refer to those.) that support giving freely to those you oppose, it doesn’t matter. The bible’s teachings do not govern this country. The torah’s teachings do not govern this country. The quran’s teachings do not govern this country. The vedas’ teachings do not govern this country. No religious books teachings govern this country.

      Can other religions enact laws that deem you unworthy of a participatory service even though it’s offered to others?

      So again, if Arlene’s, or any other business, wants to follow (their version of) Christ without legal repercussions, then don’t offer services (including participatory services) to straights only.

      I suggest you reread your bible, look into the actual meanings of the actual words and consider your deeply held religious beliefs may have no biblical basis.

      Reply
  5. Saint John the Baptist
    Saint John the Baptist says:

    Arthur: Since you did not do your homework and don’t understand the word ‘participate’ I will give you the definition from my Random House Webster’s Dictionary. ‘Participate: 1. to take part or have a share, as with others’. The issue is not about selling flowers to homosexuals, which Arlene’s Flowers did, but the participation in a homosexual ‘marriage’. Do you understand that participation in this case involves more than selling flowers? Do you understand that Christian beliefs based on the Bible are in play in this case? Do you also realize that ‘Nazi’ is not a religion? ‘No one is going to force participation’? What do you think the State of Washington is doing to Arlene’s Flowers? By the way, no truly Christian gynecologists perform abortions. And regarding your comment about ‘other religions’, you going to have the government force Muslim bookstores to sell Bibles? After all, they sell books to one religion, why not all of them? Here is what the issues are really all about. No one has the right to the labor of another. That is called slavery and it was abolished long ago. First Amendment rights to practice religious freedom trump laws. P.S. Lose the ‘snarky’ comments; the truth hurts, amigo.

    Reply
    • Arthur
      Arthur says:

      My word, this is like talking to a child.

      I have stated clearly and plainly, that YES, if the florist offers service (in this case floral service in/for weddings) to straight people then YES, it must be offered for people regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation, religion etc. If you don’t want to do that for ALL weddings, then don’t offer it to any others.

      Do only religious beliefs matter? Because that means if an atheist florist thinks homosexuality is immoral, (and doesn’t want to do flowers for a same sex wedding), then even if there are laws allowing for exceptions for “religious beliefs” they’d still have to do it. Because by your rationale, only religious beliefs matter? Stupid. So just because “Nazi” isn’t a religion doesn’t mean they don’t have beliefs as strong, or stronger than your own. But because you have trouble with understanding plainly stated concepts, how about this: Should the Jewish florist be forced to participate in a Christian wedding? What if it’s against their super deeply held religious beliefs? Or a Christian baker who believes it’s immoral to support any wedding of any person who is not a Christian?

      As for “truly christian” who gave you the godlike ability to sort Christians? There’s tens of thousands of Christian denominations, but you, YOU SJTB! You have been granted the explicit knowledge to determine ‘true christian’! You should trademark that. I wonder which denominations don’t consider you a ‘true christian’?

      Why would the government force Muslim bookstores to carry christian books? What store is forced to sell anything they don’t want to? How is this not clear to you yet? It’s only if the Muslim bookstore offered certain books to ONLY Christians (or ONLY Muslims, or ONLY men) then there’s a problem. If they don’t want to offer a bible at their store, fine. But if they do, they can’t pick and choose who to sell the book to.

      This is obviously not slavery. Arlene’s was OFFERING a service. If a person requests that service it CANNOT be denied because of race, color, religion, national origin, disabled citizens or………..SEXUAL ORIENTATION. Which is what they did. They denied wedding service because they are gay. If they don’t want to do gay weddings, don’t offer wedding services.

      I said it already, but religious freedom doesn’t mean you get to DO whatever you want (you can BELIEVE whatever you want) . Polygamy is illegal. What about their religious freedom!?! Strict laws regarding animal sacrifice. What about their religious freedom?!!? A face veil cannot be worn for a drivers license photo. What about their religious freedom!??!! If you provide cakes for Christian weddings, you must for Hindu. What about their religious freedom?!!

      Please reread before commenting. It’s silly that I have to keep repeating clearly made statements.

      Reply
  6. Saint John the Baptist
    Saint John the Baptist says:

    Arthur: Grab a dictionary and look up the word ‘participation’. So a Christian gynecologist should be forced by the government to participate in/perform abortions? A Christian florist has every right to exercise her Christian beliefs in refusing to participate in a homosexual ‘wedding’.

    Reply
    • Arthur
      Arthur says:

      SJTB,
      So you believe the Nazi florist/baker can refuse a Jewish wedding?

      If you actually read (and understood) my post you’d realize your snarky comment doesn’t make sense. It’s obvious I understand what participation means. Yes she should participate. If she offers that service to some, then she needs to offer it to all. If she didn’t want to participate in all weddings, then don’t offer it as a service. No one is going to force participation.

      Some christian gynocologists do perform abortions. Some non-christian gynocologists do not. You may be startled to find out there are other beliefs than Christianity and it may have no bearing on the OBs decision . But you question is spurious. The correct question would be “If a gynocologist participates in abortion for black women, should she be forced to participate in abortions for white women?” (Or a variation of that) Because that’s what this is about. Providing service for one group, but not another.

      Reply
  7. Arthur
    Arthur says:

    The only wilful dishonesty here is the refusal to acknowledge the Barronelle Stutzman DID refuse service to a couple because they are gay. How many years she sold them flowers is irrelevant. Wedding flower arrangements were a service her shop offered. She refused that service because they are gay. You can’t have a gay wedding without the gay people. She can’t pick and choose who can receive what service. If she provides floral services for weddings, she provides them for ALL weddings.
    I know FPIW likes the cartoon (it’s on their FB) showing a black baker being asked by two KKK members to bake their wedding cake (he should). Just to mix that up, should the KKK baker be forced to participate in a black or mixed race wedding? Should a Nazi florist be forced to participate in a Jewish wedding?
    “Non-discrimination laws were created to make sure that businesses did not have explicit policies stating “No Jews”, “No Mexicans”, “No Mormons” or anything of the kind. ” But is ok to say “Mormons OK! Except Mormon weddings. All other weddings approved. “?
    As for the Supreme Court regarding religious freedom, they have recognized the freedom to believe is absolute, but the freedom to act on those beliefs is not. Polygamy is not legal. Human sacrifice is not legal. Animal sacrifice is legal, but controlled. You can be fired by an employer for taking drugs for religious reasons.
    Matthew 5:38-49. Jesus said to give freely to those whose actions you don’t approve of. If you think homosexuals (and their supporters) are wrong, then open our eyes with kindness Romans 12:17-21. Arrange the flowers.

    Reply
  8. Aaron
    Aaron says:

    Where in the bible does it say to not sell flowers to gay people? Should all Christian business owners refuse to do business with gays? Is there a scriptural basis for this?

    Reply
    • Nora
      Nora says:

      Aaron, you apparently did not take the time to read carefully the huge number of articles that have been written about this case. Examine the facts, not just listen to politically correct jabber. Barronelle had a very positive, LOVING relationship with the gay couple for several years prior to their wedding planning. She never refused to sell them flowers during all of that time. She knew they were gay and continued to honor them as fellow human beings nonetheless. In fact, they all had a great friendship. What Barronelle simply stated was that she couldn’t be a PARTICIPANT in their wedding. They knew she was a strong Christian. The couple hugged her before leaving saying that they understood and respected her position. Then the ACLU and gay activists heard what had happened and decided to take revenge on Barronelle for daring to stand up for her beliefs. Have you ever noticed what a florist does to prepare flowers for a wedding? First of all, she has to put her creative skills into designing all the custom arrangements and getting the approval of the couple before ordering the flowers.. This can take hours. It is an intimate time of discussing the wedding. Then she has to order, assemble, and deliver the flowers to the wedding site and set up where the flowers should go and make sure that each person in the bridal party gets the correct bouquets, corsages, and boutonnieres. The florist frequently remains during the wedding in case anything needs to be re-adjusted (an arrangement tips over, a bouquet falls apart, etc.). Then the florist sticks around during the time the photographer takes pictures to place the arrangements where he wants them. After that, the florist may need to relocate the flowers to the site of the reception, placing the arrangements on tables and so on. This is called PARTICIPATION in the wedding. The florist is present and part of the wedding event. Barronelle wasn’t being asked to simply sell them some flowers but to be engaged in the activities of their wedding! If you can’t respect why participation would be objectionable to someone who believes marriage is a holy sacrament between a man, woman, and God, then you don’t realize that Christians have a distinct belief about weddings and marriage. This is not a gay rights story or a tale about discrimination. This is a matter of a gay couple trying to force a Christian woman to bow to their desires in opposition to her own conscience and set of values. It would be like forcing a gay person to take communion during a wedding in a Catholic church, a sacrament which involves acknowledging the presence of God during the ceremony. Should a gay person be forced to do that? Should a gay floral business owner be forced to participate in a Christian wedding ceremony that includes a sermon about marriage being a sacred vow only between one man and one woman? Think. Of course, there is nothing in the Bible that says that a florist doesn’t have to sell flowers to a gay person nor does it say that gays are special people to God who must be bowed down to and given whatever they want.

      Reply
  9. Stacie
    Stacie says:

    Clearly those in power have, and will continue to skew the facts to benefit their point of view. Truth has no place in the new world order. It’s a sad day…America is no longer free…if you’re White, Straight, and Christian.

    Reply
  10. NANCY
    NANCY says:

    Our state attorney general is trying to institute a new form of slavery, sanctioned by the government. In this case, according to him, people of faith must bow to whatever the gay community asks them to do. Well, we abolished slavery a long time ago, and it is forbidden in the Constitution. We need to call out Mr. Ferguson’s action for what it is, a personal, mean-spirited, illegal attack on an innocent, decent citizen of the United States of America. Barronelle has no moral or legal obligation to be a part of a gay wedding, period. Not only is our AG twisting the facts, he is also misrepresenting what Mrs. Stutzman has said. He’s claiming she is a liar and that he is a mind reader who knows what she is secretly thinking, This is absurd. What kind of payoffs do you suppose he has been offered to hold this position? He certainly is cocky about what he is doing. Please call his office and let him know that slavery is over.

    Reply
  11. Moki
    Moki says:

    I could hardly read the attorney general’s response, all his contentions are merely gay activists’ talking points, and actually have no bearing on the case.

    The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution very clearly spells out the florist’s right to exercise her religious beliefs and refuse to participate in an event that violates her conscience and religious beliefs. It is clear to me that is what the issue was, rather than discrimination based upon sexual orientation. Bob Ferguson is deliberately misrepresenting the facts of the case to further the left’s agenda, the gay agenda and to severely restrict religious freedom. He is trying to fundamentally transform the United States of America into a leftist, progressive, totalitarian state where Christians are no longer free to live by their beliefs.

    Reply
  12. TXKeith
    TXKeith says:

    The main problem with “anti-discrimination” laws is that the effect is to give carte blanche to the presumably aggrieved party to demand what they wish, under the cover of their special “protection.” Even if there is any number of reasonable grounds for refusing service to a person, the PRESUMED reason, without due process, is always to be based on their “status” merely upon their declaration that such has occurred. “You hate me because I’m gay” is simply accepted without evidence, and the accused is then forced to run the legal gamut for years trying to prove his innocence because the state PRESUMED GUILT.

    Reply

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