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Tables Have Turned: Christian Baker Goes on Offensive, Sues State of Colorado

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The Christian baker who won a case at the Supreme Court in June guaranteeing his right not to have to bake a cake for a same-sex wedding is suing Colorado after the state filed a complaint against him for refusing to create a cake celebrating a man’s gender transition.

Jack Phillips, the owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop, won a 7-2 decision against the state of Colorado, with then-Justice Anthony Kennedy writing in the majority opinion that state officials had been “neither tolerant nor respectful” of the Christian’s beliefs about marriage.

Kennedy added that the Colorado Civil Rights Commission showed “clear and impermissible hostility toward the sincere religious beliefs that motivated his objection.”

Despite this ruling, the Commission filed a complaint against Phillips late last month charging him with discrimination after he declined to bake a cake celebrating a gender transition.

In a Wednesday press release, Alliance Defending Freedom — the religious liberty law firm that represented Phillips at the Supreme Court — recounted the man (attorney Autumn Scardina) asked their client to create a cake pink on the inside and blue on the outside, which Scardina said was to celebrate a gender transition from male to female.

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The request to bake the cake came the very day — June 26, 2017 — the Supreme Court had agreed to take up Phillips’ suit against the Commission regarding baking a same-sex wedding cake.

Alliance Defending Freedom attorney Kristen Waggoner said on Wednesday, “The state of Colorado is ignoring the message of the U.S. Supreme Court by continuing to single out Jack for punishment and to exhibit hostility toward his religious beliefs.”

She continued, “Even though Jack serves all customers and simply declines to create custom cakes that express messages or celebrate events in violation of his deeply held beliefs, the government is intent on destroying him — something the Supreme Court has already told it not to do.”

ADF’s complaint filed on behalf of Phillips notes, “The Constitution stands as a bulwark against state officials who target people—and seek to ruin their lives—because of the government’s anti-religious animus. For over six years now, Colorado has been on a crusade to crush Plaintiff Jack Phillips…because its officials despise what he believes and how he practices his faith.”

Do you think the state of Colorado will lose against Phillips again?

The complaint charges the latest attempt to prosecute Phillips is in direct conflict with the Supreme Court’s ruling and that the federal suit is “necessary to stop Colorado’s continuing persecution of Phillips.”

ADF is seeking an injunction against the Colorado Civil Rights Commission from taking any further action against Phillips.

In an Op-Ed for USA Today, the baker explained why he declined Scardina’s requested cake.

“Because I believe that each person’s sex — whether male or female — is given by God and cannot be chosen or changed, the requested message is not one that I can express through my cake art,” he wrote. “But my shop still told the caller that we’d be happy to sell them other items or design cakes with other messages.”

David French, who previously worked as an attorney with ADF, noted in a piece for the National Review that Scardina apparently targeted Phillips with multiple requests that he anticipated would be offensive to the Christian.

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“In September 2017, a caller asked Phillips to design a birthday cake for Satan that would feature an image of Satan smoking marijuana. The name ‘Scardina’ appeared on the caller identification,” recounted French based on ADF’s complaint.

“A few days earlier, a person had emailed Jack asking for a cake with a similar theme — except featuring ‘an upside-down cross, under the head of Lucifer,'” French added.

Phillips believes his federal suit against Colorado is the only proper course of action.

“I have no choice now but to sue, via my Alliance Defending Freedom attorneys, the state officials who are discriminating against me,” he wrote in his USA Today Op-Ed. “My hope is that the federal court will put an end to this bullying — and that it will do so soon. I’d like to get back to the life that my state keeps taking from me.”

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Randy DeSoto has written more than 2,000 articles for The Western Journal since he joined the company in 2015. He is a graduate of West Point and Regent University School of Law. He is the author of the book "We Hold These Truths" and screenwriter of the political documentary "I Want Your Money."
Randy DeSoto is the senior staff writer for The Western Journal. He wrote and was the assistant producer of the documentary film "I Want Your Money" about the perils of Big Government, comparing the presidencies of Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama. Randy is the author of the book "We Hold These Truths," which addresses how leaders have appealed to beliefs found in the Declaration of Independence at defining moments in our nation's history. He has been published in several political sites and newspapers.

Randy graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point with a BS in political science and Regent University School of Law with a juris doctorate.
Birthplace
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Nationality
American
Honors/Awards
Graduated dean's list from West Point
Education
United States Military Academy at West Point, Regent University School of Law
Books Written
We Hold These Truths
Professional Memberships
Virginia and Pennsylvania state bars
Location
Phoenix, Arizona
Languages Spoken
English
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Entertainment, Faith




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