Freedom of Association

I was contemplating the recent $135,000.00 fine imposed by the Oregon Labor Commission on the Sweet Cakes bakery because of their failure to bake a cake for a lesbian couple for their wedding. I find this to be so insane that I can’t imagine how they even came to that number. Even an expensive wedding cake is not going to top $5,000.00 for the over-the-top wedding planner.

At stake here is more than meets the eye. If you have a public business, then you must serve the public. I think we can all agree on that. However, if the public is not behaving in a manner consistent with the nature of the business, does the business have cause to remove them? Let me give a more concrete example; if you had a children’s games and pizza place (you can pick your local/national franchise) would you find it acceptable to have ladies in lingerie and leather, and men in very minimal chaps and ethereal clothing in attendance? I can imagine that your response would be a resounding No!

Would this even be a question in the minds of most parents? Likely not. However, if you were a fetish group of some sort, you may have a different take. Alright, back to our bakery in question, the folks disagreed with baking a cake because of a religious conviction against homosexuality. Do they not reserve the right to say: No! Apparently they do not according to Oregon. Are there more than one cake making business in Oregon. A quick check on Google tells me that there are. Here the lesbian couple should have taken their business elsewhere. Let their money, and word-of-mouth do the talking for them elsewhere.

I believe that there is a distinct difference between what you choose to do in your bedroom, and what you force people to do in public. I think that forcing people to comply with your personal choice is wrong. The shoe was on the other foot not so long ago. How did the LBGT community feel about being told about their personal choices?

You have the freedom to choose who you love, but not the freedom to force me to capitulate on my religious beliefs and principles.