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Gay cake wars: a new twist in Denver

Gay cake wars: a new twist in Denver

Marjorie Silva, owner of Denver’s Azucar Bakery in Denver, Colorado, is facing a complaint from a customer alleging she discriminated against his religious belief by refusing to put a ‘God hates gays’ message on a Bible-shaped cake.

According to this report, the dispute erupted  when a customer entered her premises last year and requested cake, which she agreed to make. Just as they were getting ready to complete the order, Silva said the man showed her a piece of paper with “hateful words about gays” that he wanted written on the cake.

He also wanted his “God hates Gays” cake to have two men holding hands and an X on top of them, Silva said.

She said she would make the cake, but declined to write his suggested messages on the cake, telling him she would give him icing and a pastry bag so he could write the words himself. Silva said the customer didn’t want that.

Said Siva, 40:

It’s just horrible. It doesn’t matter if, you know, if you’re Catholic, or Jewish, or Christian, if I’m gay or not gay or whatever. We should all be loving each other. I mean there’s no reason to discriminate.

KUSA-TV identified  the complainant as one Bill Jack of Castle Rock, Denver.

In a statement to the television station, Jack said he believes:

He was discriminated against by the bakery based on my creed. As a result, I filed a complaint with the Colorado Civil Rights Division. Out of respect for the process, I will wait for the director to release his findings before making further comments.

The case comes as Republicans in Colorado’s Legislature talk about changing the state law requiring that businesses serve gays in the wake of a series of incidents where religious business owners rejected orders to celebrate gay weddings.

Republican Senator Kevin Lundberg said the new case shows a “clash of values” and argued Colorado’s public accommodation law is not working.

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Last June Colorado baker Jack Phillips, above, owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop in Lakewood, pledged to stop making wedding cakes after the Civil Rights Commission ordered him to start baking for same-sex couples.

Phillips was willing to go to court to defend his decision to refuse service to two grooms who walked into his shop last year looking for a way to celebrate their marriage.

His crusade turned out to be a monumental failure after the Commission unanimously ruled that he had violated civil rights law by discriminating against the couple.

Phillips’ attorneys had argued in court that requiring him to prepare a gay marriage cake would be akin to forcing a black baker to prepare a cake with a white supremacist message. But administrative law judge Robert N Spencer disagreed, writing that business owners can refuse a specific message, but not service.

Said Mark Silverstein, legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union in Colorado:

There’s no law that says that a cake-maker has to write obscenities in the cake just because the customer wants it.

One of Phillips’ attorneys, Nicolle Martin, said she has sympathy for Silva, arguing she is in the same category as her client.

I absolutely support her right to decline. I support her right as an American to pick and choose the messages she will express.

Silva said she remains shaken up by the incident.

I really think I should be the one putting the complaint against him, because he has a very discriminating message.

Meanwhile, in the UK, a YouGov poll finds that two-thirds (65 percent) of British people disapprove of the legal proceedings pursued by the Equality Commission against Ashers Bakery in Northern Ireland, compared to a quarter (25 percent) who approve and 10 percent who don’t know.

10 responses to “Gay cake wars: a new twist in Denver”

  1. Brummie says:

    Regardless of the outcome of this seemingly trivial incident, it does say something for American democracy when such events are argued out in public without a forgone conclusion or instant dimissal.
    Messy and expensive, but ultimately fair.

  2. Angela_K says:

    It does amuse me that the religious say there is a “gay agenda” out there making vexatious claims against cake bakers and the likes of the odious Bulls who run a Hotel in Cornwall. It would seem the loony Christians are doing exactly the same as we have been being accused of doing.

  3. Broga says:

    While scientists say the clock ticking towards planetary catastrophe has moved another two minutes (11.57 now) humans are immersed in cake wars, the death of that fine man (Cameron’s view) King Abdullah, the obsession of getting councillors to talk to a non existent God before meetings, the destruction of Christian “values” by militant atheists and the sad loss of the wonderful Lord Brittain whose admirers are now filling the BBC airwaves.

    Thank God for the pictures of the Andromeda Galaxy. They reassure by showing how trivial we are.

  4. Trevor Blake says:

    The Bible tells all Christians how to bake a cake. “And thou shalt eat it as barley cakes, and thou shalt bake it with dung that cometh out of man, in their sight.” Ezekiel 4:12. They may elect to wash it down with the drink found in 2 Kings 18:27.

  5. barriejohn says:

    I’m no expert on American law, but HE IS NOT BEING DISCRIMINATED AGAINST. How many more times? Being “anti-gay” is most definitely not a sexual orientation, and most definitely a matter of personal choice. No one is preventing him from espousing the views that he does, or even expressing them as far as I can see. This case is a non-case. No wonder lawyers make so much money!

  6. Broga says:

    @Trevor Blake: As the recipe came from the inerrant words of God it must be the one to use. I wonder if any of our occasional Christian contributors would like to comment? Have they tried the recipe? Would they recommend it?

  7. David Anderson says:

    I wonder how many bakers good ‘ol boy Bill Jack of Castle Rock had to visit before he found one that was unwilling to take his order?

  8. L.Long says:

    Saw this at the FA and stated….
    It is amazing how utterly stupid xtians can be when they equate “I hate gays”
    with “can you make a cake for the wedding”. Understand that when I say they are stupid, that is a compliment, as their level of real stupid is SSSSsssoooo low as to be far below utterly stupid as to be invisible.
    And worse still is the number of people who will argue for the xtian side!!!!!!

  9. Vanity Unfair says:

    To Trevor Blake:
    It’s actually a recipe for multi-grain bread and probably very wholesome although I would like more details about the beans. Dung is a good fuel when dried and still widely used. So widely used that soil fertility is poor from lack of proper fertilizer application.
    Ezekiel is either badly written or badly translated (or both) so the intentions of the author(s) are not clear. And I don’t believe in the flying saucer either.

  10. barriejohn says:

    Vanity Unfair: You’re quite right. In times of hardship bread was made of coarse grain and baked with animal dung, but Ezekiel prophesied that the people would be using human excrement for fuel – probably covering their bread with it, which they would have found extremely distasteful.

    http://biblehub.com/ezekiel/4-12.htm

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