This article originally appeared on WND.com
Guest by post by Bob Unruh
‘We lost everything we loved and worked so hard to build’
The state of Oregon, already told by the U.S. Supreme Court in so many words to quit showing hostility to a Christian baker, is taking another stab at getting the case right.
It was a state official who years ago when the case involving Sweet Cakes by Melissa first erupted who lashed out angrily at the Christian owners, Aaron and Melissa Klein, and accused them of being criminals.
They were fined $135,000 by state officials when they declined orders to violate their Christian faith and promote same-sex weddings with their artistry.
That’s the same issue that was before the high court in the Colorado case involving Masterpiece Cakeshop and owner Jack Phillips. That’s the case where Colorado was resoundingly blasted for exhibiting “hostility” to Christianity.
The Sweet Cakes case, on appeal, was sent back to the state for the decision to be changed in alignment with the Masterpiece ruling.
So state officials there, instead of following the intent of the high court’s ruling, lowered the penalty from $135,000 to $30,000 by essentially copying and repeating their earlier condemnation.
Now, officials with First Liberty Institute confirm that the Oregon Court of Appeals, again, has heard arguments in the case.
First Liberty reported, “Last June, the Supreme Court of the United States vacated an earlier decision by the state court that effectively forced Aaron and Melissa out of business for refusing to create a message that conflicted with their sincerely held religious beliefs. It was the second time the Supreme Court struck the Oregon courts’ opinions in this case. “
”Freedom of speech has always included the freedom not to speak the government’s message,” said Stephanie Taub, senior counsel to First Liberty Institute “The First Amendment protects all Americans, of different perspectives and beliefs, to not be forced to use their art to send a message with which they disagree.”
Melissa Klein, in a statement released by First Liberty, explained, “We welcomed and served everyone in our bakery, but we could not endorse all messages. We lost everything we loved and worked so hard to build. We just want to be able to run our business without being forced to celebrate events that conflict with our religious beliefs.”
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