Published: Sun, December 31, 2017
Global | By Enrique Rogers

Oregon Appeals Court Upholds Discrimination Ruling Against Antigay Bakers

Oregon Appeals Court Upholds Discrimination Ruling Against Antigay Bakers

An Oregon state appeals court on Thursday let stand $135,000 in damages levied against the owners of a Portland-area bakery for discrimination after they refused on religious grounds to prepare a wedding cake for a local lesbian couple.

The state fined the bakers after determining they violated a 2007 OR law that protects the rights of gays, lesbians, bisexual and transgender people in employment, housing and public accommodations.

First Liberty Institute, which is representing the Kleins, says it's considering further appeals. The Bowman-Cryers filed a complaint, arguing that the Kleins broke a state law against discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation.

Melissa and Aaron Klein have been ordered to pay $135,000 to a lesbian couple the bakers declined to make a cake for.

In a statement Rachel and Laurel Bowman-Cryer, who had tried to order the cake from the Kleins, said today's ruling proved "all are equal under the law" and should be treated as such. "In Oregon, businesses that are open to the public are open to all", they said. But the Oregonian adds that the fallout hasn't been minor for Avakian - it says that his fateful order will likely go down as "the most controversial ruling" in his almost ten years as labor commissioner.

The panel of appellate judges concluded that baking wedding cakes does not constitute "speech, art or other expression" protected by the First Amendment.

Colorado Rockies reportedly sign Wade Davis to three-year deal
Holland is now the top relief pitcher available and should ultimately garner a contract worth nearly as much as the one Davis got. Over nine Major League Baseball seasons, primarily with the Tampa Bay Rays and the Kansas City Royals , he has 79 saves.

The unanimous decision of the Court of Appeals was written by Judge Chris Garrett and joined by Judges Joel DeVore and Bronson James. "The Oregon Court of Appeals decided that Aaron and Melissa Klein are not entitled to the Constitution's promise of religious liberty and free speech". "In a diverse and pluralistic society, people of good will should be able to peacefully coexist with different beliefs".

The court also said the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries did not "impermissibly burden the Kleins' right to the free exercise of religion" because the Christian bakers were only forced to comply with "a neutral law of general applicability".

But on Thursday, the court shot down that argument, too and said the Kleins failed to prove it was not comparable to previous judgments.

Stay on topic - This helps keep the thread focused on the discussion at hand.

Share with Us - We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article, and smart, constructive criticism.

Like this: