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Brent Bozell
L. Brent Bozell
15 Apr 2015
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A Way Out for Christian Wedding Businesses?

Comment

Radical activists in the gay community have put pedal to the metal to force gay acceptance from Christians — making not only their position but also their tactics anti-Christian. They are deliberately targeting the Christian wedding industry — the cakemakers, the caterers, the quaint bed-and-breakfast owners, and the like. They are headhunting Christians who refuse their business on moral grounds by slapping them with lawsuits or "human rights" complaints.

Fascists would appreciate these tactics.

Everyone witnessed the national shaming and death threats that came to Memories Pizza in Walkerton, Indiana, because the owners declined to cater a gay "wedding" — while stating effusively that they never had, nor would they ever consider turning away gay customers. It needs to be underscored that the owners never even received a catering request. They were simply asked their opinions and that's all the Thought Police needed. There are other less publicized examples of real trouble.

Barronelle Stutzman, owner of Arlene's Flowers in Richland, Washington, was sued — by a regular customer — for refusing to provide her services for his gay marriage. The state's attorney general pressed her to settle for a $1,000 fine and a promise she would perpetually violate her conscience and fulfill all gay marriage requests in the future. There were other florists — Stutzman even offered a referral to someone else — but this wasn't about flowers. It was about silencing Christian opposition.

A textbook case of left-wing entrapment came with Robert and Cynthia Gifford, owners of an inn near Albany, New York. A lesbian activist called to request a gay marriage at the inn, and she recorded the phone call. When Gifford said no, the activist filed a complaint with the blue state's "Human Rights" bureaucrats. The Giffords were fined $13,000 — including $3,000 to the lesbian activist couple for their "mental anguish."

There are other examples around the country.

In the days to come there will be many more. This is orchestrated, and vicious.

What are Christians to do?

Enter Father John Zuhlsdorf, a priest and blogger in Madison, Wisconsin. He has arrived at a solution for all these lawsuits that could turn the issue completely on its head. He counsels a big Yes for any gay-wedding requests, with a few promises written into the contract (with Catholic touches in this example).

Tell them that the food and services will be just fine. "And then inform them that all of the money that they pay for the services will be donated to a traditional pro-family lobby. If it is something like catering, where your employees have to be there to provide services, tell them that all your people will smile, be professional, and every one of them will be wearing crucifixes and have the Holy Family embroidered on their uniforms. Then show them pictures of your uniforms. When the truck pulls up, speakers will be playing 'Immaculate Mary.' Show them the truck and play the music."

If they're appalled, then say, "Oh, you would be offended by that? I'm so sorry. You approached us because we are Christians. Right? We are happy to provide services for you and we are grateful that you chose to come to our Christian catering business. We just want to be of help.

"Then tell them that you will take out an ad in the paper to let everyone know what you did with their money, thanking them by name for their business so that you could make the contribution."

No one is refused service or suffers "discrimination" in this scenario, and the caterer's conscience is intact. Leftist lawyers and judges don't get to levy fines. But if gay couples want to force their lifestyle on others, it naturally follows that religious believers should push their beliefs more elaborately as well.

L. Brent Bozell III is the president of the Media Research Center. Tim Graham is director of media analysis at the Media Research Center and executive editor of the blog NewsBusters.org. To find out more about Brent Bozell III and Tim Graham, and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.

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