Thursday, December 12, 2013

Gay Rights or Religious Freedom? I wouldn't eat this cake.

I found the above article sad in many ways. First, I am not a proponent of discrimination in any form but this case, taken to court, was a lose/lose situation in my eyes. Yes, a ruling was made that Masterpiece Cakeshop must make a cake, which means all cake shops regardless of whatever reason must bake a cake for gay couples, or for anyone who wants one. Mr. Phillips had refused based on religious beliefs. The judge ruled that baking the cake wouldn't hurt his business, but would most likely increase his business and make it more profitable. It wasn't about money for Mr. Phillips--it was about upholding his religious beliefs. He offered to bake any other items the couple might want, just not a wedding cake. Clearly he didn't hate the people, he just couldn't in his heart support the marriage. Mr. Phillips' attorney made a statement that I found very true: “America was founded on the fundamental freedom of every citizen to live and work according to their beliefs,” Martin said in a prepared statement. “Forcing Americans to promote ideas against their will undermines our constitutionally protected freedom of expression and our right to live free.”

What appears to be a win for gay couples isn't a win at all but will in reality only foster more hate. Mr. Phillips appears to be a good man. I'm sure if he bakes a cake for the couple he will bake them a beautiful, delicious cake. Not everyone who may be forced to abide by this ruling will be. And truly, would you want to eat a cake or serve a cake to your guests made by someone who didn't want to bake you a cake? I wouldn't. How do you know they didn't grind up maggots in the flour and bake them in the cake? You wouldn't taste it or see it, but the baker would know it was there. How do you know they didn't spit in the batter before baking it? You wouldn't see it, or taste it, but the baker would know it was there. There are a million things the person baking your special cake could do to it that wouldn't leave a taste or be seen, that are sickening to think of.

My children would tell you that I often applaud people for standing up for their beliefs even if I disagree with them. In this case I applaud the gay couple for standing up for their rights to be served by anyone and treated equally with other couples getting married, but I also applaud Mr. Phillips for standing up for his religious beliefs. Both were right and both had rights. If this were the ONLY bakery in the world that made wedding cakes I would say that the couple had every right to go to court and get a ruling. It isn't the ONLY bakery in the world that makes wedding cakes. Clearly the couple could have gone to another bakery that would have been happy to bake them a beautiful cake. Mr. Phillips wouldn't have been forced to lose his rights to uphold their rights. And they could have had their cake and eaten it too, as could their guests, without the nagging fear in the back of their mind that the baker did something nasty to it.

When we take an action in court to force someone to do something against their will, we may think we've won, but there are no winners. We fan the fires of hate in those just looking for a reason to hate. And there are plenty of those people out there. Mr. Phillips doesn't appear to be the type of person to hate, but I would guarantee you he bakes his cakes with love, because he loves what he does. If he bakes this cake it won't be make with love. It may be beautiful and even delicious, but it won't be a happy cake and I doubt very seriously the couple will enjoy it at all.

1 comment:

  1. You're right -- this was a lose/lose situation for everyone.

    I have no problems with gay people, nor gay marriage (as my son says, let them have the same problems straight people have with taxes, divorce, etc.). However, I am sick and tired of hearing about whatever group's "rights" BS that is currently in vogue, be it gays or straights or people who hate french fries. Let's get back to simply being . . . being good, honest, hard-working, responsible, caring citizens, no matter what country we live in, and expect all elected officials and government employees to be the same. Quit all the BS about "rights" and legal standing and learn to once again enjoy life without worrying about someone's sexual orientation or family connections or financial status. The majority of the people in this country have become so besotted with appearances that they have forgotten to appreciate others for their goodness, not the size of their houses or bank accounts.