by Trent Rosser
If you read last week’s column, I was on a soapbox about inflation and customer service. Well, I ain’t done yet. I’m just getting started. I might be a little behind on the times, but sometimes I have to just sit back and watch the world fall apart. This has happened in Colorado and just recently in Oregon. A while back, a bakery was fined for discrimination for refusing to back a cake for a wedding for a gay couple. I have not read anything with the court on this, just what I have read on the news sources from the area. I do not agree with the bakery, they were willing to bake a cake for the “marriage” of 2 dogs, but not the marriage of 2 humans. I do not agree to that at all. That is discrimination. Now, does the bakery have a right to refuse service? I do believe that they do. They have the right to refuse service, but not to discriminate. This bakery clearly discriminated.
There was also a bakery in Oregon that had the same problem, just different situation. A Christian bakery, who displayed bible verses on the website, was recently fined $135,000.00 for not baking a cake for a lesbian couple. They had a lesbian couple ask for a cake and they explained that it was against their religion for same sex marriage and that they would not bake a cake for their wedding. That could have been the end of it, but since everyone is looking to make a buck, the bakery was sued for discrimination. The bakery (Sweet cakes by Melissa) claimed that the religious beliefs were protected by the U. S. Constitution. The bakery lost the case and was fined. The co-owner of the bakery, Aaron Klein fought for months against the outcome and even started a Gofundme account to help with the appeal. It raised over $100,000.00 before Gofundme shut the account down citing that the campaign was not compatible with the terms of service. This past December, the Court of Appeals upheld the amount of the penalty. I actually agree with the bakery on this one. They showed that it was against their religion, but still have to pay out-of-pocket because someone did not like their religious beliefs. This was not discrimination, but the court said it was so.
So, just to recap, if you put a sign in your business that says, We Reserve the Right to Refuse Service to Anyone”, or the old sign that says “ No Shirt, No Shoes, No Service.” Then you better careful. Your business could be next on the chopping block of the next person that is ready to sue someone for a record amount of money. Now don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against gay or lesbian couples. I believe that if that is your sexual preference then so be it. I have friends and family that are homosexual and I have no problem with them. Here is what should have happened at both bakeries. The couples walk in, look around and ask the clerk for a wedding cake. When the clerk finds out it is for a same sex marriage, calmly explain that it is against their beliefs and that they unfortunately will not be making a wedding cake for the couple. The couple can then tell the clerk or company that their belief is wrong, and that will be the end of it. If the couple wants to take it further, then they could blast them on social media and to all their friends and family why they did not get a cake there. That should be the end of it. Instead, someone’s feeling became hurt and the lawsuits begin. My feelings get hurt all day long! I don’t go around wasting money by suing people for what they did NOT do. Hell, if that was the case, I would be taking Wal-Mart to court for never having enough cashiers. How about the stores that say Happy Holidays instead of Merry Christmas? DO NOT take the Christ out of Christmas. That offended me. I am ready to sue. When is the nonsense going to stop? Why is everyone so offended suddenly? Did I miss something? We are now tearing down statues of the biblical 10 commandments because it offended someone. We are trying to change history by removing all confederate statues. When did it offend someone to show our history? The statues have been there for half a decade and now suddenly they are offensive? When I was growing up, if something offended us, we dealt with it and moved on. Here is an example. The “Dukes of Hazzard” was a hit show that ran from 1979 to 1985. It was based in the south and was an action and comedy. The car was a 1969 Dodge Charger, painted bright orange and had a confederate flag painted on the roof. All the kids wanted to be Bo or Luke Duke and all the boys were in love with Daisy Duke. The show did not offend and it did talk about some of the racial issues and other issues on some of the episodes, but not much was offensive. Not until 30 years after it was cancelled did it become an issue. Warner Brothers stopped selling toys that had the confederate flag on the car. TVLAND the station that is famous for airing reruns of classic shows stopped airing any of the episodes. Why is it offensive now and not then? Because people’s feelings are hurt and we need safe spaces. I am not sure if it is true or not, but some colleges actually had counselors and “safe space” for students when Hillary Clinton was not elected as president of the United States? Really? I did not want certain people elected and I did not run and hide and cry and sue when they took office. But, some people found it offensive.
I am done talking about offending people and what I believe should happen. I believe that we need to get back to the 70’s and 80’s; the time when neighbors looked out for each other and if there were issues, they talked it out. The time were family would sit down and watch TV about a family of rednecks with a muscle car and then switch the channel to a show about the black owner of a chain of cleaners. I do not remember riots in the streets to cancel either one of these shows. We need to sit down and talk it out. How does anyone expect to be treated fairly, if we do not treat others with the same respect? If you expect someone to change their beliefs to suit your needs, and then sue because you are offended, then you are just a hypocrite. And if that offends you, then sue me. Trust me, you can’t get blood from a turnip.
And remember these views are mine and not necessarily of my wife or anyone else.