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29 Sep, 2017 15:55

Satanic Temple trolls Christian bakers in ‘gay cake’ dispute

Satanic Temple trolls Christian bakers in ‘gay cake’ dispute

The US Supreme Court will finally hear the notorious gay wedding cake case next month and the LGBT community fears the ruling will not go in its favor. The Satanic Temple has found a unique and devilish way of trolling Christian bakers, however.

“Our organization has received a lot of concerned messages from people who are upset by the prospect of an environment in which the LGBTQ community are openly and legally treated as second class citizens,” Satanic Temple founder Lucien Greaves said in a statement, as cited by SF Gate.   

“Because religion is a protected class, a baker may refuse service to LGBTQ people, but they may not refuse service based upon someone’s religion. If they aren’t willing to make a cake for same-sex unions, let’s have them make a cake to honor Satan instead,” he added.  

“If you can’t get a cake for your same-sex union,” Greaves said, “we’ll host a party in your honor at The Satanic Temple headquarters in Salem, and order a cake that praises Satan from your offending discriminatory ‘religious liberty’ enthusiast.”

Satanists, and all other theists, are a protected class but members of the LGBT community are not (except in the state of California).

Greaves argues that either sexual orientation should be added as a protected class or religious belief should be declassified as protected.

The Supreme Court is due to rule on the 2012 anti-discrimination lawsuit involving Colorado baker Jack Phillips who refused to bake a customized cake for a gay couple citing his religious beliefs.  

This was deemed a violation of the Colorado Anti-Discrimination Act, but federally, under the 1964 Civil Rights Act, sexual orientation is not a protected class. The civil rights commission ruled in favor of the same sex couple, David Mullins and Charlie Craig, and an appeals court later upheld the ruling. The case is now headed to the Supreme Court.

"[The bakery named] Masterpiece remains free to continue espousing its religious beliefs, including its opposition to same-sex marriage," presiding Judge Daniel Taubman wrote at the time, as cited by SF Gate.

"However, if it wishes to operate as a public accommodation and conduct business within the State of Colorado, [the law] prohibits it from picking and choosing customers based on their sexual orientation."

Phillips claims the controversy has negatively impacted his business, reports The Denver Channel.

“I’ve always had to operate my cake shop in a manner that honors God. I gladly welcome and serve everyone who comes into my shop, and would sell anyone any pre-made baked goods. I’m closed on Sundays,” Phillips said Monday.

“I don’t take orders for cakes with messages or designs commemorating events or ideas in conflict with my beliefs, including messages that are anti-American, celebrate atheism, racism, or indecency,” Phillips added.

A total of 86 members of Congress signed an amicus brief (a legal document by non-litigants with a strong interest in the case) sent to the Supreme Court in favor of the baker, which was also backed by the Trump administration.