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Sunday, July 5, 2015

No Liberty for You

In a case that ought to have been laughed out of court, two lesbians claimed they suffered all sorts of harm because meanie bakers declined to make them a “wedding” cake. The Christian bakers said that their faith would not allow them to participate in the nuptials in that way. And because of that refusal, say the lesbians, they were afflicted with “acute loss of confidence,” “doubt,” “excessive sleep,” “felt mentally raped, dirty and shameful,” “high blood pressure,” “impaired digestion,” “loss of appetite,” “migraine headaches,” “pale and sick at home after work,” “resumption of smoking habit,” “shock,” “stunned,” “surprise,” “uncertainty,” “weight gain” and “worry.”

They might well have added, “She turned me into a newt.” Because there’s not much difference between this list and “Dame Tabitha looked at me askance, and I felt unwell from that moment. When the wagon wheel broke and the beer went sour, I knew she had hexed me. Burn the witch!” Really, girls, the prospect of going somewhere else for a cake left you with “acute loss of confidence?” Your convictions about your sexual proclivities must be mighty shallow if the lack of a cake so crushes them. “Mentally raped”? I don’t think that word means what you think it means. Try comparing cake denial to being thrown off a tall building and smashed on the pavement. Or being buried up to your neck and hit in the head with stones until you die. In certain circles, that’s the response to your “lifestyle.” But somehow this crushing denial conjured up “impaired digestion,” “loss of appetite,” and “weight gain.” That’s quite a trick. “We’ve been denied a cake? I don’t feel like eating, but I must cram in a third helping of fettucine Alfredo because of the migraines and uncertainty.”

Listen. The bakers did not drag the lesbians into court, accusing them of offending their sensibilities. In fact, they had been serving this pair in the same way as other customers. Ordinary interactions were not a problem. It was only the wedding cake they balked at. The Bible tells Christians to “…abstain from things sacrificed to idols and from blood and from things strangled and from fornication; if you keep yourselves free from such things, you will do well.“ These are all ceremonial actions, things done to honor other gods than the LORD. (Acts 15: 20 and 29) They violate God’s “prime directive,” to “have no other gods before me.” Not wanting to participate in a ritual that ignores God's law is a very good reason not to make a wedding cake for two women. I understand the judge has told the bakers they may not speak in public about their reasons for refusing the cake order. What a disgraceful act of judicial fascism. Consider this my little slice of resistance.

They tell us you can’t be a racist if you don’t have the power to oppress. Let’s apply that principle here. Can the bakers tell the lesbians they ought to repent of their sins and be baptized, and, if they refuse, drag them into court to have their livelihood destroyed by a judge who may be aware that there is such a thing as the US Constitution, but has no further acquaintance with it? Yet the bakers are to be ruined because their consciences did not allow them to participate in a ritual they believe is wrong. Someone is being oppressed here, all right, but it is not the overwrought lesbians. 

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