[DISCUSS] Discriminating Cake

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So I’m sure most of you have seen the story about the homosexual couple who were denied their wedding cake by a baker who claimed it was against his beliefs to support their marriage by making them a cake. The baker was then sued by the couple, who won the case in court, and now the baker doesn’t have a choice but to make the couple a cake.

Well, according to Fox News, the result of this lawsuit is “The Death of Free Enterprise.”

Now let me start this by being devil’s advocate, shall I? Because in my view, everyone involved in this situation is a jerk. A massive jerk. The homosexual couple in this story have gone on record to say that they have been customers of this baker before. They have gotten birthday cakes, family cupcakes, what-have-you. They have also gone on record to say that they knew BEFORE THEY WENT TO ASK FOR THE WEDDING CAKE, that the baker did not personally approve of homosexual marriage. So what do they decide to do? Go right to him and try to order a wedding cake from him. They specifically put this man in the situation to go against his personal beliefs and support their marriage by making them a cake. He’s not the only baker in town, guys, it was not necessary to ask him specifically to make the cake. It was also not necessary to file a civil lawsuit against him for not making the cake. They could easily have said, “We don’t agree with your discriminatory attitude, and we will file criminal charges against your establishment to prevent you from denying other customers, but we personally will take our money elsewhere.” interracial

This does NOT, however, dismiss the actual discrimination by the baker against this couple. Legally, he does not have the right to deny service to a collective group of people because of a specific quality they share. To deny these men his service as a baker strictly because they are gay is discrimination, no question. If gay were replaced with any other collective group term, the country would be in uproar. What if he were old-fashioned and didn’t approve of interracial couples? If he had a black man and a white woman come in and ask for a cake and he denied them, people would have a fit! But that’s not the case, now is it? The guy claims religious backing to his discriminatory attitude, and all of a sudden it’s a denial of his rights, not the rights of the men he refused to serve. This is no different from a person at a retail store refusing to assist a disabled customer, or a cashier at a grocery store refusing to check out or bag items for a Hispanic person because they don’t speak English. In the end, BOTH the baker and the couple were wrong. BOTH the homosexual couple judged the baker for being discriminatory in his personal beliefs, AND the baker judged the homosexuals according to his personal beliefs and had his actions follow that judgment.

Basically, in this story, everyone loses. The baker is not disgruntled and crying about his rights being impeded upon, the couple who started it have to pay the man for a cake he doesn’t want to make, and everyone looks like a self-centered, arrogant asshole. So the question remains: how do we avoid discrimination against sexual orientation while still allowing people to live and conduct their lives under their personal beliefs?

For me, the answer is not a win-win for everyone. People need to come to the realization that, in this country, the societal rule overpowers personal belief. The human right of every man is upheld above all things, and in this, personal views on the rights of specific kinds of men must be left out of society. Unless anti-homosexual advocates make a successful argument to the government of this country to consider homosexuals as sub-human, and therefore not worthy of the rights of other humans, then they’re going to have to treat these men and women equal to any other person that walks in their door. Now, it would be a common courtesy that if the personal discriminatory beliefs of an individual were known to everyone (i.e. if the baker’s issue was known by the homosexual couple), then those of the group that person believes against would make it a point either to avoid the topic or at least treat any interaction about that topic respectfully (i.e. the homosexual couple, in knowing the baker wasn’t comfortable with homosexual marriage, not go to that particular baker to shaking-handsmake the wedding cake). In a perfect world, here’s how it would go down. A homosexual couple who knows the baker and his personal beliefs goes to the baker for other services, but goes elsewhere for the wedding cake. A homosexual couple who does not know the baker, and whom the baker has never met before, comes to the baker with a request of a wedding cake, and the baker, realizing it is not the fault of the couple for asking him to go against his beliefs, respectfully addresses his beliefs to the couple, and asks if the couple is comfortable with someone of his beliefs to make their cake. If they say yes, he makes it without complaint, and if they are concerned about his feelings in the matter, they respectfully leave.

Unfortunately, there’s no win-win here. Either someone is forced to do something against their personal beliefs or someone is unfairly discriminated against because of someone’s personal beliefs being above the law of human equality. But no matter how you look at it, human rights should come before personal beliefs. In our society, we are founded on the (however vague and changing) line of human equality which is determined by majority and law. To allow individuals to dismiss this societal line for their own personal interests, no matter what those interests are founded on, will always lead to a breakdown in society itself.

The bottom line is that everyone in this particular situation is at fault, and until we address BOTH sides of the issue. No more making one side the victim and the other side automatically the villain. They are BOTH villains, and they are BOTH victims. Once we see things for every aspect of what they are and not just categorize these kind of situations into one specific category of problem, we can finally make progress on the issues of our society.

My answer to how we do this? Simply put:

StopitF

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6 thoughts on “[DISCUSS] Discriminating Cake

  1. I agree with your prognosis – that everyone involved is/was a gigantic asshole. The baker is a homophobic bigot and the couple -??? I can understand them taking this to court as a means to make a point and show that no one should be discriminated against, but going as far as getting the cake made by him? That’s beyond bizare! Could you imagine the conversation at the reception? “Oh wow! What a beautiful cake! Where did you get it made?” “Oh, by this homophobic asshole after we sued him and won!” “Ungh really? Why not just go to someone who isn’t a homophobic asshole?”
    I wonder how good the cake tasted?

  2. I pretty much agree with your assesment. However, I feel like the baker offers a public service, and to be discriminatory in his business affairs…he should have gotten a stiffer sentence than merely having to bake a cake. I get that the couple walked in knowing the bakers position, and easliy could have went elsewhere, but why? Why not ask the guy they do business with regularly to bake thier cake? Is that not unlike Rosa Parks sitting in the front of the bus? To generate a change in society, there must be a line drawn here and there, and people must stand up against discrimination. There will be no progress without that kind of willingness to buck the system. Just a thought, and with that said…

    Do not save me a piece of that cake! I would not dare eat any cake that came from an angry baker…and cake is hard to turn down!

  3. In regard to your statement of approval in regard to Deiter F. Uchtdorf’s statement: “To those who judge others, I offer this prophetic advice: ‘Stop it!'” Can Deiter really make that statement without judging all those who judge? Has he not set up “nonjudgmentalism” as the key, one and only sacred tenet of his faith, condemning all who do not adhere to it, and setting a chasm between those who judge and those who do not?
    This baker was not judging the homosexual couple at all. He was acting upon his own conscience, which does not depend on societal conscience. He did not tell them what to do or what to think or believe; he simply wanted nothing to do with helping them do it. By forcing this baker to ACT in accordance with the beliefs of these homosexuals this takes it beyond the rights of the homosexuals and crosses the boundary into his rights. They were not merely asking him to sell food or wares to people who happen to be homosexual, but were demanding that he sell things in specific support of their lifestyle. I’m with the baker.

    • I wouldn’t say asking or telling someone not to judge is a judgment, per se . At least it’s not a judgment on the person judging, but is a judgment on the negativity of judgment itself.

      And I agree with your assertion about the homosexual couple, but again, hating the sin and loving the sinner does not make up for a discriminating denial of service to a person. The homosexuals were wrong to demand the service of the man knowing that the man was not comfortable with it, but it’s also the fault of the baker for denying the service on the premise that he didn’t agree with the men’s marriage. If someone denied services to Christians (or any other religion) on the premise that they did not agree with the religion, that place would be sued and the person in charge would be jailed for discrimination. Same for people of color, for disabled people, etc. To me there is no difference. Your personal issues with someone’s private living style or way of life in general should not be grounds to discriminate without punishment.

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