The Wedding Cake Debacle
Lawsuits Against Christian Bakers, and Other Businesses, and What Can Be Done
Let me start right off with this disclaimer: I am a Born Again Christian. It took me until I was 31 to find my life in Jesus, and though I am not currently in a church, I read my Bible every night, and talk to Him throughout the day. I am stone solid in my Bible-based beliefs.
** In 2014 there were 183,280 same-sex marriages in America, roughly a third of 1 percent of all marriages. (NYT)**
Now, to this Christian Business Lawsuit stuff. The actual number of lawsuits are very small. As of right now, I can think of 4 very public lawsuits. Why must these happen at all?
Should these Christian businesses be able to turn away potential clients and customers, based on a difference of theological ideals and morals?
Hmmmm... this is tricky.
See, the Constitution guarantees that everyone is free to practice and observe their religion, in a manner that is in accordance with that religion. So, in this case, if a Christian business owner feels that making a cake, or taking portraits, or designing floral arrangements for the same-sex marriage is not in accordance with their beliefs, by the Constitution, no one can force them to do it.
But, there are all these sub-laws, not in the constitution, that help to govern our country. These laws hold that no person should be discriminated against, do to race, religion, disability, etc. These laws are written into nearly every aspect of our lives, from employment to housing, and yes, even businesses. They are important and need to be in place.
So, by these laws, telling a potential client that they will not do business with them based on sexual orientation, is not legal. However, it is also illegal to force a Christian to do business if it is against their religion.
Hmmm... I see a catch 22 here, Do you?
Each party, based on the sub-laws, is breaking the law, by trying to enforce their rights. Wow, tough situation.
So, what can be done? Legally? not much, really. Not unless someone goes in and changes the actual Constitution. I mean, yes, because of the sub-laws, there are lawsuits and counter lawsuits. However, these things can go on seemingly forever. Lawyers love this stuff. The ACLU? WOO, they get so much publicity, and then, donations. This is a money maker for those two groups.
Now, my thoughts are this:
For the Christian Businesses
First, I believe that a biblical marriage is between a man and a woman. I base this belief on many scriptures, but it begins in Genesis 2:18-22. God created Eve to be Adam's helpmeet.
Second, I also believe that we should not discriminate against any two persons that choose to be married, outside of the Biblical sense. If we do, we are encouraging hate and discourse, which also goes against Jesus. Jesus said, paraphrasing, "love one another as I love you," right? We can let our feelings be known, but be respectful in so doing. At the final judgment, Jesus will make that call, as to if it was ok with Him.
Finally, as Christians, it is our duty, our Biblical duty, to wins hearts TO Christ, not away from Him. Stand firm in your belief, as a Christian business. Have a copy of the Constitution handy, along with the laws about discrimination. Have your Bible marked and ready to go, with scripture explaining why you feel as you do, as well as lines of love for all man.Also, have a list of like business that you can recommend.
For the Same-Sex Couples
First, I love you. Some of my dearest friends are gay couples. I have gay family members. They are kind, generous, loving, and some identity as Christians. They know where I stand, in my beliefs, and they love me as I love them.
Second, if you know a business is Christian-based, expect a declined request, and ask for a referral. Otherwise, try going elsewhere. My friends, I spoke of above, have said this very thing, when in conversations about these lawsuits.
Maybe you all disagree. That's ok with me. This is the USA, and it is our Constitutional right to disagree with each other, for now. These lawsuits could start a precedent that eventually takes that right away if we are not careful.
So, let's be kind to one another. Let's be accepting of one another. Let's love one another, as Jesus would.
God Bless you all.