Pray, Pray, Pray!

It’s next Tuesday, December 5.

It’s Justice for Jack time.

That’s when the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) will hear oral arguments in Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission.

I’ll be there, speaking at the rally and praying.

Follow me Tuesday starting at 6:30 a.m. Arizona time on CAP’s Facebook live feed  for my interviews and reports in front of the Court building during this historic case. Also follow me on Twitter @azpolicy.

Most importantly, take time to pray that justice will prevail at our nation’s highest court. Pray for the nine justices. Pray for Alliance Defending Freedom attorney Kristen Waggoner as she presents the main arguments in defense of Jack.

To recap the case, artists and creative professionals should be free to create art and other expression consistent with their convictions without threat of government punishment.

The nine justices will decide whether the state of Colorado can compel a cake artist to design a custom wedding cake in celebration of a same-sex marriage, even though this would violate his sincerely held religious beliefs about marriage.

In 2012, two men asked Jack Philips, owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop, to design a wedding cake in celebration of their same-sex marriage. Because of his religious beliefs concerning marriage, he told the men that he was glad to sell them anything in the store or create a cake for them for another occasion, but that he would be unable to design a wedding cake for them. They in turn filed a complaint with the Colorado Civil Rights Commission (Commission).

In 2014, the Commission ruled against Jack, in a clear violation of his First Amendment rights. The Commission ordered Jack to design wedding cakes for same-sex marriages if he continued to create any wedding cakes. Further, the Commission ordered Jack to reeducate his remaining staff, most of whom are his family members, by teaching them that he was wrong to run his business consistent with his faith. Finally, the Commission ordered Jack to file quarterly reports with the government for two years telling state officials every time he declines an order and explaining the reasons why. Consequently, Jack decided to leave the wedding industry, which has cost him 40% of his business.

For Jack, it has never been about sexual orientation, it has been about celebrating an event. Jack serves all who walk through his doors, no matter where they are from, what their background is, or how they identify. In fact, he offered to sell the men anything in his shop or create a custom cake for them for other occasions.

Like other artists, Jack does not use his creative talents to celebrate all events or express all messages. For example, he doesn’t create anti-American cakes, cakes that celebrate Halloween, adult-themed cakes for bachelor and bachelorette parties, or cakes celebrating divorce. He’s also declined requests for cakes with anti-LGBT messages.

Should a Democrat speechwriter be forced to write a speech for President Trump?
Should an atheist sign-maker be forced to create signs proclaiming the existence of God?
Should a Muslim singer be forced to perform at a Christian religious event?

If Jack loses, we all lose.

This case is far bigger than marriage. If the government can force an artist like Jack to create custom art against his faith and cripple his business if he doesn’t, it can do the same thing to any artist or creative professional, no matter what belief they hold.

As you know, Jack’s battle is not just a Colorado problem; religious freedom and free speech are also under attack here in Arizona. The case of Brush & Nib in Phoenix makes it clear. Many would like to see the laws in Colorado — the ones compelling Jack to use his artistic talents to celebrate a same-sex wedding — become a reality throughout Arizona.

For the past several legislative sessions, CAP has worked diligently to oppose “bad bills” — like the ones in Colorado — that threaten the religious freedom and free speech rights of all Arizonans.

Know that CAP’s unwavering advocacy for religious freedom will continue just as strong as ever during the upcoming 2018 legislative session.     

Talk to you on Tuesday via Facebook!

ICYMI – Latest News & Articles of Interest

  • Phoenix artists in the Brush & Nib case are appealing a Maricopa County Superior Court decision allowing a Phoenix ordinance to stand, even though it threatens them with jail time and fines if they do not create custom artwork that violates their core beliefs about marriage.
  • On “The Briefing” Albert Mohler discusses a Washington Post article trying to normalize abortion by highlighting the trend of abortion doulas.
  • The Hidden Hands of Caitlyn Jenner” by Andrew T. Walker
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