The litigation against Jack Phillips hasn’t subsided after his Supreme Court victory. Now he’s on trial for refusing to bake a cake celebrating gender transition. The Bake Shop attorney says “Masterpiece Cakeshop has regular customers who are transgender. The issue has to do with the message …. This lawsuit isn’t about discrimination, it’s about the freedom to disagree.”
Masterpiece Cake Shop famously won a U.S. Supreme Court case over it’s owner Jack Phillips’ refusal to bake a cake that celebrated a same-sex marriage. Phillips said while he would sell anyone a cake, requiring him to put lettering on it celebrating the marriage violated his religious beliefs and was unconstitutional.
The Supreme Court ruled in his favor, though it didn’t announce any sweeping principles of law.
But it wasn’t over, the cakeshop was sued again by the State of Colorado after the same person requested a “gender transition” cake, Colorado goes after Masterpiece Cakeshop again – this time over “gender transition” cake.
The state eventually dropped the case, Masterpiece Cakeshop wins again – CO drops prosecution for refusal to bake ‘gender-transition cake’, but the woman sued privately, Masterpiece Cakeshop Sued A Third Time, Ostensibly Over “Gender Transition” Cake.
That was the last time we covered the attacks on the cakeshop, but that third case just popped up on the news because it is in trial.
Courthouse News reports on some details:
Three years after the U.S. Supreme Court sided with Masterpiece Cakeshop — albeit narrowly — in a case over a same-sex wedding cake, a transgender woman took the Christian bakery back to a Denver court Monday after the bakery refused to make a birthday cake commemorating her gender transition….
“Why not just bake the cake? That’s a question Jack Phillips gets asked a lot. Avoid years of litigation, avoid the death threats. Just make the cake. But Jack Phillips sees himself as an artist, and the cake as an expression of his soul,” explained Phillips’ attorney Sean Gates of the firm Charis Lex. “Jack Phillips’ cakes convey a message.”
The conservative Christian organization Alliance Defending Freedom is also supporting Phillips’ defense.
Showing a slideshow of racecar, cat and basket-shaped cakes, Gates said, “Even though he creates a lot of cakes, none of them are the same. When he makes a cake, he finds out what that person loves so he can create the right message for the right time.
“But Jack Phillips is a Christian and his religion affects what he can create,” Gates continued. “Jack Phillips will make cakes for all people, but he cannot make cakes for all messages.”
Phillips says that over the years he has declined to make cakes celebrating Halloween, alcohol, racism and marijuana as well as ones with demeaning messages.
“Masterpiece Cakeshop has regular customers who are gay, Masterpiece Cakeshop has regular customers who are transgender. The issue has to do with the message,” Gates argued. “The evidence will show that if Jack Phillips bakes that cake that it would mean he agrees a gender transition is something to celebrate. This lawsuit isn’t about discrimination, it’s about the freedom to disagree.”
Jones is presiding over the four-day trial, which is being held remotely in light of the Covid-19 pandemic.
CBS Denver reports that the plaintiff testified she was calling Phillips’ “bluff” by demanding the transition case:
On Monday, during a virtual trial being conducted by a state judge in Denver, Scardina said Phillips had maintained that, as a Christian, he would sell any other type of product but opposed making the gay couple’s wedding cake because it involved a religious ceremony.
She said she called Phillips’ Masterpiece Cakeshop to place the order after hearing about the court’s announcement because she wanted to find out if he really meant it.
When her lawyer Paula Greisen asked whether the call was a “setup,” she said it was not.
“It was more of calling someone’s bluff,” she said.
This never was about the cake or discrimination. It’s about compelling speech.DONATE
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