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Colorado Baker Faces Heat for Religious Expression
Posted By Andrew T. Walker On June 22, 2013 @ 3:06 pm In Culture | Comments Disabled
Phillips declined on the grounds that participating in such a ceremony violates his religious beliefs about marriage. Similar cases have involved a Washington florist  and a New Mexico photographer .
Even though the Colorado celebration was for a marriage actually performed in Massachusetts, and Colorado does not recognize same-sex marriage under its laws, the baker stands accused of violating Colorado’s nondiscrimination law. Heritage’s Tom Messner has written  how situations such as those in Colorado are triggered:
Conflicts between same-sex marriage and religious freedom will often involve some type of previously adopted nondiscrimination law or policy, and nondiscrimination laws can impose burdens on religious freedom even in jurisdictions that do not legally recognize homosexual unions as marriages.
Colorado is proving the point. Same-sex marriage is not formally recognized in the state, but nondiscrimination law can, even in states without same-sex marriage, produce conflicts with religious freedom.
In this case, the attorney general of Colorado issued a formal complaint at the behest of the ACLU. The case is expected  to go before Colorado’s Civil Rights Commission. The complaint  urges Phillips to “cease and desist” his activity. Phillips could face fines of $500 and up to a year in jail.
For Phillips, the issue at stake is whether law will force him to use his creative services in a way that violates his faith.
Phillips told a reporter he serves non-wedding cakes to all customers —regardless of sexual orientation. It’s the same-sex marriage to which he objects.
Phillips’s attorney believes that actions against him are yet another example of recent trends that restrict conscience.
“At its heart, this is a case about conscience,” said  Nicolle Martin, his attorney. “It would force him to choose between his conscience and a paycheck. I just think that’s an intolerable choice.”
Phillips refuses to compromise and remains determined to stand up for his religious views. “If it came to that point, we would close down the bakery before we would compromise our beliefs, so that may be what it comes to,” Phillips told KCNC-TV .
Article printed from The Foundry: Conservative Policy News Blog from The Heritage Foundation: http://blog.heritage.org
URL to article: http://blog.heritage.org/2013/06/22/colorado-baker-faces-heat-for-religious-expression/
URLs in this post:
 filed a discrimination complaint: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/colo-gay-discrimination-alleged-wedding-cake-article-1.1366148
 Jack Phillips: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/30/jack-phillips-denver-bakery-gay-couple-wedding-cake_n_1721093.html
 Washington florist: http://blog.heritage.org/2013/04/17/penalizing-religious-belief-no-bed-of-roses/
 New Mexico photographer: http://blog.heritage.org/2012/08/22/new-mexico-photographers-religious-freedom-case-goes-to-state-supreme-court/?query=New+Mexico+Photographer%E2%80%99s+Religious+Freedom+Case+Goes+to+State+Supreme+Court
 has written: http://www.heritage.org/research/reports/2011/07/same-sex-marriage-and-threats-to-religious-freedom-how-nondiscrimination-laws-factor-in
 expected: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/colo-gay-discrimination-alleged-wedding-cake-article-1.1366148#ixzz2WUoY338U
 complaint: http://bigstory.ap.org/article/colo-gay-discrimination-alleged-over-wedding-cake
 said: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/colo-gay-discrimination-alleged-wedding-cake-article-1.1366148#ixzz2WVRNhA18
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