Dear Barronelle Stutzman,
Can you just stop, please? Stop making yourself sound like a victim when you were the one doing the discriminating?
We all know that you knew this gay couple; that you sold them flowers for every event — Christmas, birthdays, anniversaries — for years, but the minute they decided to get legally married, and use your business — your public business — for their wedding flowers, suddenly it was “all about The Gays.”
Here’s the deal, Barronelle: discrimination is illegal in Washington; you cannot discriminate against anyone on the basis of their race, age, gender, ethnicity, or sexual orientation.
But.You.Did. You decided that all of the sudden the Baby Jeebus didn’t want you to serve this gay couple because, ick, they were getting married. It was okay to sell them flowers any other day of the year, but not on their wedding day. That was discriminatory, and it’s wrong, and rude and stupid and illegal.
So, the state sued you, and the Washington state attorney general offered to settle the discrimination case if you paid a fine of $2,000 fine and stopped discriminating against same-sex couples; same-sex couples who, by the way, would probably never come to you at all given your history so, take that hit to your business, dear.
But you rejected the settlement and now you’re the Poster Victim for all the anti-LGBT groups out there; and you’re speaking at their events and letting them push forward their lies that the state of Washington and/or that same-sex couple you discriminated against are trying to take your business, your home, and all of your money.
That’s a lie. Stop it. Stop letting people spread that lie. And stop trying to appeal the ruling because you’re going to lose there as well. That became quite clear after Benton County Superior Court Judge Alex Ekstrom rejected your argument that your actions in discriminating against that same-sex couple were protected by freedoms of speech and religion.
Not so, dear. The First Amendment protects religious beliefs but it doesn’t necessarily protect the actions one takes on those beliefs — like in denying services for which your publicly run business was created.
So, you’ll lose, and when you do, you, as the loser, may be forced to pay damages and legal fees for both that same-sex couple and the state of Washington that far exceed the attorney general’s offer of $2,000; two thousand dollars and a payment of $1 for legal fees if you would just agree not to discriminate against same-sex couples any longer.
But you’d rather discriminate and hate and couch it in your narrow view of the Bible.
What would Jesus say about that?