Masterpiece Cakeshop owner Jack Phillips already has beaten the state of Colorado, twice, in its LGBT-themed attacks on his Christianity.
The first was decided by the Supreme Court which scolded the state for its “hostility” to his faith, and the second ended when the state thought better of going down the same road – and losing – twice.
But the legal team members at the Alliance Defending Freedom who have defended him now have filed a motion to dismiss in state court in Colorado because a “transgender” who demanded the right to order Phillips to create a cake that violated Phillips’ faith – something the Supreme Court said is not allowed – sued him.
See Phillips and ADF lawyer Jeremy Tedesco, explain:
The ADF explains, in 30 pages of legal argument, that the person filing the lawsuit, attorney Autumn Scardina, lacks standing, didn’t go to the right court, lost the right to sue for failing to appeal another ruling and more.
Then the lawyers ask Denver district court: “Phillips wants to peacefully live out his faith as a cake artist by serving all people while declining to express messages that violate his beliefs. After losing in court, the state was content to leave Phillips alone to do just that. But Scardina won’t allow it. Phillips requests that the court dismiss the complaint so that he can return to the life he had before the state and Scardina targeted him and his faith.”
The fight is one of basic constitutional rights: The protections for faith are written into the Constitution. Scardina, and others who have persecuted other bakers, venue owners, photographers and the like, are demanding that “LGBT rights” as seen in the Supreme Court’s creation of “same-sex marriage” must trump all constitutional protections for faith.
It’s far from settled, with many other cases still pending en route to a possible review by the Supreme Court.
The ADF explains Scardina is “the same attorney” who prompted the state of Colorado’s second attack on Phillips.
Colorado abandoned that case and closed it when, after having won a Supreme Court judgment that Colorado was pursuing “hostility” toward his Christian faith, Phillips sued the state. That case eventually was resolved, too.
But Scardina, unwilling to accept the state’s decision and apparently unwilling to appeal through the state’s process, filed a separate damage claim against Phillips seeking $100,000 in damages and legal fees.
Scardina had demanded a blue and pink cake to represent a sex change, something that Phillips said violated his faith.
ADF reported, “The same attorney has also asked Phillips to create a custom cake depicting satanic themes and images.”
That demand also was declined.
“It’s time to move on and leave Jack alone. This new lawsuit is nothing more than an activist’s attempt to harass and ruin Jack because he won’t create custom cakes that express messages or celebrate events in conflict with his conscience,” said ADF Senior Vice President of U.S. Legal Division Kristen Waggoner, who argued on behalf of Phillips before the U.S. Supreme Court.
“Jack’s victory at the Supreme Court was great news for everyone. Tolerance for good-faith differences of opinion is essential. It’s the only way for diverse people with differing views to peacefully coexist. This attorney’s relentless pursuit of Jack is an obvious attempt to punish him for his views, banish him from the public square, and bankrupt him and his shop.”
The filing explains the legion of reasons why, under the law, the case should be dismissed. It explains the case doesn’t satisfy the conditions required for filing a discrimination complaint, why Scardina chose the wrong court in which to file, the allegations are not properly submitted, and Scardina does not allege sufficient or specific facts to support a claim.
Then there’s the issue that “the federal and state constitutions bar discrimination against Phillips because of his religious exercise.”
The original complaint against Phillips was brought by the state based on allegations from Charlie Craig and David Mullins, who demanded a same-sex wedding cake.
A key factor in that ruling from the Supreme Court was that another consumer had contacted three bakeries run by homosexuals and asked for cakes decorated with condemnations of homosexuality. They all refused, and the state Civil Rights Commission said they were within their rights to refuse to produce a message with which they disagreed.
The state, however, expressed its hostility to Christianity be refusing Phillips the same right.
It was Diann Rice, then a member of the state commission, who stated, regarding the claims against Phillips, “I would also like to reiterate what we said in the hearing or the last meeting. Freedom of religion and religion has been used to justify all kinds of discrimination throughout history, whether it be slavery, whether it be the Holocaust, whether it be – I mean, we – we can list hundreds of situations where freedom of religion has been used to justify discrimination. And to me it is one of the most despicable pieces of rhetoric that people can use to – to use their religion to hurt others.”
The Supreme Court, in a resounding 7-2 ruling, eventually scolded the state for its “hostility.”
Talk-radio host Rush Limbaugh expressed disgust when Scardina’s newest claim was filed.
“I remember this case like it was yesterday. … They decided that the bake-shop owner had been really unfairly treated by a state civil-rights agency,” he explained.
“The latest lawsuit against Jack Phillips is – I’m not making this up, now. The latest lawsuit against Jack Phillips, the owner of the Masterpiece Cakeshop, is filed by a guy who harassed the bakery for months, requesting things like a cake with a picture of Satan performing fellatio. The guy walks in, requested that Jack Phillips bake a cake with a picture of Satan performing fellatio. Of course, Jack Phillips said ‘no.’
“This discrimination suit’s utterly baseless,” he said. “Any person with two functioning brain cells can see.”
WND reported when the second case developed that social media turned out to back Phillips.
Twitter user Amy reacted: “I have to wonder what the cakes from this place taste like at this point. They must be amazing.”
I have to wonder what the cakes from this place taste like at this point. They must be amazing https://t.co/UOgceVu6ut
— Amy☃️🎄 (@AmyOtto8) December 20, 2018
Pointing out Colorado’s new prosecution, she added, “Maybe he couldn’t make a cake that turned into a pie.”
“Funny how these people keep coming to Masterpiece Cakeshop knowing the owner is a Christian who refused to make a cake for a same-sex wedding,” said a post on the Twitter news-aggregating site Twitchy. “There are other bakers, you know.”
“It’s almost like these people are targeting him for his religious beliefs or something,” added Twitter user Ironic Glasses. “But that can’t be right, because I’ve been assured for years that LGBQ is all about live and let live.”
Phillips’ position from the outset has been that he will sell a cake to anyone, but he cannot be forced to create messages with which he disagrees. Previous court rulings have affirmed protection from “compelled speech.”
Back when the second case was erupting, James Dobson, the noted Christian psychologist and founder of the Dr. James Dobson Family Institute, charged the state of Colorado was running a “biased” Civil Rights Commission that exhibits hostility to “people of faith.”
And he told lawmakers to fix it.
“We call upon the Colorado legislature to provide unbiased, fair, constitutional due process for all Coloradoans, including people of faith, and to prevent future hostility by this biased government agency.”