Bakers don't have to make gay cake
The UK's Supreme Court has ruled that the refusal of a Belfast baker couple to make a cake for gay activist Gareth Lee with the slogan "Support Gay Marriage" was not discriminatory. The bakers had rejected the slogan and not the customer, the court said justifying its decision. Not all commentators agree with this line of argument.
A clear case of discrimination
The judges' ruling that the bakers' refusal was not based on the customer's homosexuality is absurd, The Independent rails:
“As the judges also concede: 'It is deeply humiliating, and an affront to human dignity, to deny someone a service because of that person's race, gender, disability, sexual orientation, religion or belief.' Such humiliation was plainly suffered by Mr Lee and, by proxy, by many others. Mr Lee's sexual orientation and the slogan on the cake amounted to the same thing; they can no more be separated from one another than the eggs and flour can be extracted from a cake once baked.”
A victory for freedom
Columnist Fionola Meredith, by contrast, expresses her delight at the judgement in The Irish Times:
“In an open, tolerant and free democracy, no individual, institution or company should be under any obligation to facilitate the dissemination of beliefs that are antithetical to their own ethos. … Let the judgment stand for what it is: a victory for freedom, which means a victory for all of us. We have the liberty to choose our own political or religious beliefs and stick by them, regardless of how unpopular they may be. We have the liberty to refuse to have the beliefs of others imposed upon us by an authoritarian arm of the state.”