The Supreme Court is still deliberating the case of a Christian baker in Colorado who was found guilty of discrimination, and ordered to undergo sensitivity training and explain every job he refused to the state, all because he turned down a job to make a same-sex wedding cake. But while we wait, a small ray of hope that common sense will return has shone forth in, of all unlikely places, California.
Monday, a state judge rejected a request by the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing to slap a restraining order on Christian baker Cathy Miller of Bakersfield, to force her to make same-sex wedding cakes. Miller told the couple that she couldn’t honor their request because it violated her religious beliefs, but she referred them to another baker who would do the job. (You mean you can just go to another bakery? Why didn’t all the other people filing lawsuits against Christian bakers think of that?!)
The judge ruled that the First Amendment protects Ms Miller’s right to practice her religious beliefs, and since there were other bakers in town from whom the clients could obtain a cake, their claim that they feel they suffered indignity from her refusing the job was not sufficient reason to deny her constitutional protections. Plus she wasn’t just selling them a cake off the shelf, she was being asked to create a cake specifically for a purpose that violated her beliefs.
The ruling is being hailed as a major win for religious freedom advocates, and a hopeful sign that the Supreme Court will finally clarify its muddled same-sex marriage ruling that’s allowed a newly-created minority right to trample the majority’s First Amendment rights. Let’s hope those learned Justices are as wise as the California cake baker, who said, "My conscience doesn't allow me to participate in certain activities that are contrary to my biblical beliefs. I pray that we can all come to an understanding so that we can continue to get along."