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Christian Family face possible legal action

(482 Posts)
NanKate Wed 09-Jul-14 22:55:32

I have just read in the paper that a Christian family who run a bakery have been threatened with legal action as they refused to bake a cake supporting gay rights.

The cake would have featured Sesame Street characters Bert and Ernie and the slogan would have been 'Support Gay Marriage'.

What are your thoughts?

gillybob Wed 09-Jul-14 23:16:06

I respect anyone's views although I may disagree with some of them. I don't think this family run bakery did anything wrong. They obviously have strong Christian values and could not bring themselves to go against their personal beliefs. It's a pity they just didn't say they were too busy and did not have the time or capacity to fulfill the order. Why would anyone (gay or not) contact the national press and make an issue out of it? confused

gillybob Wed 09-Jul-14 23:17:07

Sometimes I wonder if these things are not a great big set up and the bakery was deliberately approached knowing they would refuse the order. hmm

rosequartz Thu 10-Jul-14 00:15:17

According to a news report the cake was ordered for an event at the town hall in support of gay rights, hosted by the mayor.

He allegedly said that 'he fully supports the action taken against the bakery. Businesses should not be able to pick and choose who they serve.'

Two thoughts on this: how much did a jolly like this cost (regardless of its purpose) when there are stringent cutbacks in essential services?

Is it true that a business has to supply goods - I understood that the supply of goods is a contract and that each party has to agree to the contract, eg if a shop does not wish to sell you an item they do not have to.

I agree that this may have been purposeful mischief-making and the bakery was 'set up' by the mayor or one of his cronies.

janeainsworth Thu 10-Jul-14 03:47:37

Businesses can pick and choose who they serve. A restaurant, for example, could reasonably ask a group to leave if they were making a lot of noise and disturbing other customers, or if they were violating a dress code, eg men not wearing a shirt.
What they cannot do is discriminate on the grounds of race, disability, age or sexual orientation.

NfkDumpling Thu 10-Jul-14 06:35:59

Would a Kosher butcher be sued for not providing a pig for a hog roast?

NfkDumpling Thu 10-Jul-14 06:36:24

It's a set up.

NanKate Thu 10-Jul-14 07:01:23

I agree it was probably a set up. I feel sorry that the bakers have been put in this position. They do have the backing of the church but often that is not sufficient to save them from being fined.

I wonder how things would have panned out if they had gone to a bakery run by Muslims. It does seem to me that the Christian community are targeted more often that other faiths.

NfkDumpling Thu 10-Jul-14 07:14:23

Soft target.

Aka Thu 10-Jul-14 07:27:46

Why didn't the bakery simply say they couldn't take the order as they had too much on rather than show a homophobic front?

PRINTMISS Thu 10-Jul-14 07:29:50

I too feel that it might be a set-up, people with Christian beliefs seem to be an easy target these days, and I do feel that if someone feels strongly enough about something, and has the courage to say so, then that is their right in what is after all a free country.

MiceElf Thu 10-Jul-14 08:03:30

I'm a Christian and I have no problem with gay marriage. But I agree that that this has all the hallmarks of a set up. There must be no shortage of bakers in the locality, why ask an overtly Evangelical Christian one to bake their cake.

I only know what I've read in a short newspaper piece but it seems that they have in the past refused to make a cake with the f word on it and other slogans which they feel are not compatible with their beliefs.

It's always a problem when two freedoms clash. On the one hand the freedom not to be involved in an action which goes against deeply held beliefs and, on the other, the freedom to request a service or goods from a service or goods provider.

Aka Thu 10-Jul-14 08:05:21

Doesn't the Christian church accept homosexuality then?

janeainsworth Thu 10-Jul-14 08:18:13

'Judge not, that ye be not judged'

Even if the bakery owner didn't approve of gay marriage, surely the Christian thing would have been to bake the cake anyway?
But it is beside the point. He discriminated, which is illegal. Period.

Iam64 Thu 10-Jul-14 08:26:46

It does sound as though the bakery could be relied on to get on its moral high horse doesn't it.

Nfk - none of us would expect Jewish butcher to sell pork, nor a Muslim butcher for that matter. The issue here is prejudice, discrimination and the bakery must have been aware they were in line for a lot of publicity, in just the same way that whoever asked them to bake the cake was.

sunseeker Thu 10-Jul-14 08:27:35

This was obviously a set up, also I believe this is happening in Northern Ireland where gay marriage is not yet legal.

I don't think the bakery discriminated against the couple because of their sexuality, if they had asked them to bake a cake without the words "Support Gay Marriage" they would have done so. I think the bakery were specifically targeted in order to make a political point.

I have no problem with gay marriage but I think those who pull this sort of stunt do their cause no good at all.

MiceElf Thu 10-Jul-14 08:28:35

There is no such thing as 'the Christian church'. There are many, many different traditions.

I've no idea if the law was broken, I expect it will be tested in the courts as the boarding house case was. But whatever the result, it will be certain that extreme positions are entrenched, a lot of sound and fury expended and money wasted, all over a cake. Northern Ireland could do without this.

Aka Thu 10-Jul-14 08:44:09

The term Christian Church when used as a proper noun usually refers to the whole Christian religious tradition throughout history. When used in this way the term does not refer to a particular denomination or to a building.

MiceElf Thu 10-Jul-14 08:53:30

No it doesn't. In the context in which you lazily used it, it means nothing of the sort.

Agus Thu 10-Jul-14 08:53:36

Why would anyone, running a bakery business, which I assumes serves the general public, refuse to serve someone because they don't approve of their beliefs?

The actions of this family could result in people boycotting their bakery. Quite a risk to take if you want run a profitable business.

jinglbellsfrocks Thu 10-Jul-14 08:56:28

This is what's wrong with making laws to cover things which should be left to individuals' personal beliefs.

Obviously we need laws to protect gay people from being physically or verbally bashed up, but this baker isn't doing either of those things. He's just sticking to his personal beliefs. Shouldn't be covered by the law.

jinglbellsfrocks Thu 10-Jul-14 08:57:59

I thought the Christian Church covers anyone who believes in, and tries to follow the teachings of, Jesus.

jinglbellsfrocks Thu 10-Jul-14 09:02:40

The Christian church does accept homosexuals, but not the practicing of homosexuality. They just haven't made up their minds whether it's a sin or not. If it is a sin, gay people can still hope for God's forgiveness. If it turns out not to be sin, then everything is hunky-dory.

Lilygran Thu 10-Jul-14 09:04:10

They didn't refuse to serve them, from my reading of the news items. What they refused to do was put a specific slogan on a cake. I don't have a problem with gay marriage. I do have a problem with a legal requirement that people should pretend to support or even agree with positions they honestly can't. Several posters have said, why didn't the bakery say they were too busy? I imagine because they believe lying and misrepresentation are wrong. Why didn't the Mayor take his business to a gay-friendly bakery?

Agus Thu 10-Jul-14 09:04:49

So, does, love they neighbour only apply to other Christians?