Christians just won a huge victory for religious freedom in California.
The California Superior Court ruled in favor of the Christian owner of a Bakersfield bakery, who had declined to bake a gay wedding cake.
Cathy Miller, who owns Tastries Bakery, was sued by a lesbian couple, Mireya and Eileen Rodriguez-Del Rio, who had requested she make a cake for their wedding.
“Everyone is God’s creation and I love everyone,” Miller had told the media, at the time of the lawsuit. “But there are certain things that violate my conscience, and my conscience will not allow me to participate in things that I feel are wrong. Most of what that’s based on is scripture.”
“The right to freedom of speech under the First Amendment outweighs the State’s interest in ensuring a freely accessible marketplace,” said Superior Court Judge David Lampe in his decision. “The right of freedom of thought guaranteed by the First Amendment includes the right to speak, and the right to refrain from speaking. Sometimes the most profound protest is silence.”
Lampe also pointed out the difference between baking a wedding cake, which requires artistic expression, and selling a household good like tires, which does not, as the reasoning behind his First Amendment decision. Because of this, Lampe believed that Miller was being forced to “use her talents to design and create cake she has not yet conceived with the knowledge that her work will be displayed in celebration of marital union her religion forbids.”
Despite the victory, the lawsuit is expected to be appealed to a higher court.