Friday, 06 June 2014 18:10

Baker Who Refused Same-sex Couple Must Take Sensitivity Training

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A Colorado baker found guilty of discrimination for refusing to bake a wedding cake for a same-sex couple must go through sensitivity training as part of his penance and rehabilitation. In December of last year, Administrative Law Judge Robert Spencer found Jack Phillips, owner of Masterpiece Cake Shop in the Denver suburb of Lakewood, guilty of discriminating against same-sex couple Dave Mullin and Charlie Craig when he told them in July 2012 that he couldn't bake them a wedding cake because homosexual behavior conflicted with his Christian beliefs.

Phillips appealed the verdict to the Colorado Civil Rights Commission, which stood by Spencer's decision and ordered May 30 that Phillips be required to bake wedding cakes for same-sex couples in conflict with his moral Christian convictions. Additionally, Phillips and his staff will have to submit to a regimen of state-sanctioned sensitivity training to make sure they are in line with Colorado's non-discrimination statute.

Over the next two years Phillips will also be required to submit quarterly reports to Colorado's Civil Rights Commission concerning his business practices, informing the commission whether he has turned any business away, most importantly homosexual customers. “So if his shop is closed or he's out of flour, he needs to report to the commission,” explained Nicolle Martin of Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), the conservative Christian legal advocacy group that represented Phillips in the case, to Fox News on June 5.

As far as the sensitivity schooling, Phillips will have to “prove that he has sufficiently trained his employees and staff to comply with the Colorado anti-discrimination act,” added Martin.

Among those employees is Phillips' 87-year-old Christian mother, who helps out on occasion at the shop. As for her compliance, Phillips told Fox that it is unlikely. The training “is not going to have any effect on her,” Phillips predicted confidently. “She's not going to be reformed.”

Attorney Amanda Goad of the ACLU's Colorado franchise, which filed the discrimination complaint against Phillips on behalf of the same-sex couple, said that while “religious freedom is undoubtedly an important American value ... so is the right to be treated equally under the law free from discrimination.”

Martin responded that religious freedom is not an important American value, "it's a [constitutionally guaranteed] right, and the fact is, the state of Colorado has no business forcing Jack to abandon deeply held convictions ... which are protected by the First Amendment, so the state can impose a new, government-approved belief system upon him.”

In his ruling against Phillips, Spencer wrote that the baker had “no free speech right to refuse because [he was] only asked to bake a cake, not make a speech. It is not the same as forcing a person to pledge allegiance to the government or to display a motto with which they disagree.” He added that “at first blush, it may seem reasonable that a private business should be able to refuse service to anyone it chooses. This view, however, fails to take into account the cost to society and the hurt caused to persons who are denied service simply because of who they are.”

Phillips, who responded to the judge's guilty verdict and order to begin baking cakes for same-sex couples by dropping future wedding cake orders, said he has no intention of violating his moral convictions. “I’m not going to make cakes for same-sex weddings,” he told TheBlaze.com. “That violates my First Amendment speech … and my duty as a Christian abiding by my Savior.”

He said that he would be happy to provide birthday cakes and other baked goods to gay customers, but holds the line on serving same-sex weddings. He added that he is willing to do jail time for his convictions. “If that’s what it took,” he said. “I’m not giving up my faith for anything. It’s too high a price to pay.”

ADF Senior Vice President of Legal Services Kristen Waggoner noted that “forcing Americans to promote ideas against their will undermines our constitutionally protected freedom of expression and our right to live free. If the government can take away our First Amendment freedoms, there is no other thing it can’t take away.”

Photo of Jack Phillips: AP Images

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14 comments

  • Comment Link Brandon Friday, 13 June 2014 17:13 posted by Brandon

    @R Jensen, maybe if you read a little further in your Bible, you'd understand that passage in context.

    Romans 2: 1-3
    1 You, therefore, have no excuse, you who pass judgment on someone else, for at whatever point you judge another, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things. 2 Now we know that God’s judgment against those who do such things is based on truth. 3 So when you, a mere human being, pass judgment on them and yet do the same things, do you think you will escape God’s judgment?

    I guarantee you that you are guilty of at least half of the sins listed in Romans 1: 28-32 immediately after the passage about homosexuality. This is why I can't stand most Christians. They don't even practice what they preach.

  • Comment Link Tionico Tuesday, 10 June 2014 00:56 posted by Tionico

    stupid "judges" making law... they conveinently forget that that pesky First ARticle of Ammendment contains fourb clauses, only ONE of which regards "freedom of speech". This guy's guarantee that his right to enjoy :the free exercise thereof" ( refering back to religion, of which government cannot make any law ESTABLISHING) These kangaroo korts seem to be estqblising qa new religion, one that holds sodomy as a sacrament,abnd FORCING this man to embrace that religioin at the expense of, and in direct conflict with, his own. The court is forcing him to adopt their prescribed religion and abandon his own. If these judges are elected, he should initiate a campaign to see to it they are not returned to the bench



    Further, he should seriously conbsider disappearing from the sick state of Colorado. Move to Wymoing, Montana, maybe Nevada. I'd ask to examoine the curriculum of that "sensitivity training" and if found to be contrary to his own faith, refuse to subject himself to it on the basis they are forcing him to memorise the catechism of their own sick new religioin, and he'll not do it. Thos Kangaroo Korts have no authority outside the sick state of Colorado.

  • Comment Link Tionico Tuesday, 10 June 2014 00:42 posted by Tionico

    Michael Dalene there is no requirement that a corporation "serve teh public god", nor is there any that require a corporation to abide by any laws or rules that an individual is not also required to abide. NBo idea where you get your "informatio". I own a corporation and I've never heard of any difference.... I have to abide by all LAWS of government.. but the rules such as this are not law, but administrative code.

  • Comment Link R Decker Monday, 09 June 2014 19:19 posted by R Decker

    There is no such thing as administrative law so this so called judge has no power.

  • Comment Link R Decker Monday, 09 June 2014 19:18 posted by R Decker

    There is no such thing as administrative law so this so called judge has no power.

  • Comment Link Michael Dalene Sunday, 08 June 2014 08:54 posted by Michael Dalene

    Is the company incorporated? If so, it is no longer Private and must abide by government rules (some of which are surrendering so called "civil rights," though 'legally' that is not quite 'legal' either). The sad thing being is that government will not use its legal Power against the (global) corporations that the Corporate Laws (Corporate Charters) are design to protect this nation against... it is the Right (and Duty) of the issuing government agency to periodically review Corporate Charters and dissolve those corporations not serving the public good...

    AND A VERY GOOD CASE CAN BE MADE THAT NONE ARE SERVING THE PUBLIC GOOD!

    Most of you didn't know that, did you?

  • Comment Link William Jarett Sunday, 08 June 2014 04:49 posted by William Jarett

    This country is decoupling from sanity.

  • Comment Link Nora Sunday, 08 June 2014 00:16 posted by Nora

    The court system in this country is a huge part of the problem. We have to start standing up for OUR rights to be Christians and refuse to comply.

  • Comment Link R Jensen Saturday, 07 June 2014 21:41 posted by R Jensen

    If I were him I would have made the faggots their cake but printed Romans 1:26,27 on the icing:

    26 For this reason God gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. 27 Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due.

  • Comment Link Heidi Preston Saturday, 07 June 2014 16:08 posted by Heidi Preston

    Lol, this this so ironic. Here you have a person going against social norms (in this case he doesn't approve of gay marriages which in some states is still illegal under the LAW) and then you have the liberal courts saying you can't believe in a non-approved social norm way if it concerns gays because of discrimination laws. So in essence discrimination laws (which haven't even been fully substantiated by the courts) supersedes privacy laws of the individual (not to mention religious persecution under State laws). No physical harm was done to the individual and the individuals had a "right " to go to any other baker that offered their services to them. This is blatant reverse discrimination of a business practices.
    "Purely private and individual discrimination,, is not prohibited"...so I highly recommend that he enroll his business as a "private" bakery club that is supported solely by it's membership dues such as a "Christian" bakery and be done with the whole brain washing scenario.
    It's getting to be so ridiculous you have to laugh in order to keep from crying.

  • Comment Link Marilyn Calkins Friday, 06 June 2014 19:39 posted by Marilyn Calkins

    What is it with atheists and anti-Christians? They want God taken out of everything because it offends them. If you DON'T believe in God, if you don't believe He's real, then HOW can that offend them? Who is more irrational? The person who believes in a God they don't see? Or the person who's offended by something they don't believe in?

  • Comment Link S. TOBEY Friday, 06 June 2014 19:23 posted by S. TOBEY

    "I know it would be inconvenient, but I think it's time he closed up shop. Nothing In these details but Satan himself."

    Oh really? And just whose side is Satan on? For my part the devil is in the details of "politically correct" bullies - the LGBT "activists" who could have gone somewhere else for their so-called "wedding" cake; but who chose instead to "stick it" to a baker they apparently knew to be a devout Christian. The bullies also include the judges who adjudicated - badly, IMO - on this case. And now "sensitivity training"??? OK, so now I guess the old communist "re-education" centers have been resurrected. I am so fed up with this crap; but in the end Almighty God will be the judge.

    And just as a reminder, one good quote from the Bible was: "Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!

  • Comment Link Marilyn Calkins Friday, 06 June 2014 19:23 posted by Marilyn Calkins

    Nothing but satan in this tyrannical government! One of the first basic freedoms people came to the country for was to be able to practice their religion. Colorado doesn't even recognize same-sex marriages, but their going to FORCE people to violate their spiritual beliefs? Screw that.

  • Comment Link Diana Friday, 06 June 2014 18:52 posted by Diana

    I know it would be inconvenient, but I think it's time he closed up shop. Nothing In these details but Satan himself.

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