UK Supreme Court Agrees to Hear Appeal of Bakers Punished for Declining ‘Support Gay Marriage’ Cake

LONDON — The U.K. Supreme Court has agreed to hear the appeal of a Christian family that was ordered to pay damages to a homosexual rights activist for declining to write the words “support gay marriage” on a cake.

“The fact that the Supreme Court is willing to hear arguments is very encouraging and reflects the importance of the issues and the high-profile nature of the case,” Ashers Baking Company Manager Daniel McArthur said in a statement following word of the development.

As previously reported, in May 2014, the company—named after Genesis 49:20—was approached by a same-sex “marriage” supporter to bake a cake that was to feature the phrase, as well as the logo for the homosexual advocacy group QueerSpace. According to the Belfast Telegraph, the cake was for an event in observance of the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia.

McArthur’s mother, Karen, initially accepted the order as she didn’t want the man to feel embarrassed. But as the matter was discussed with other family members, it was agreed upon that they could not go through with putting the message on the cake in good conscience before God.

McArthur told reporters that the company contacted the customer and offered a refund, explaining that same-sex “marriage” is against their Christian beliefs.

However, the customer, Gareth Lee, soon reported Ashers Baking Company to the Equality Commission of Northern Ireland, which in turn sent a warning to to McArthur, stating that he and his bakery had discriminated against Lee.

In November 2015, the Commission ordered the bakery to pay compensation or face legal action. As the McArthur’s refused, the case moved forward in court. Judge Isobel Brownlie then ruled against the McArthurs, declaring them “guilty of unlawful discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation,” and ordered the bakers to damages equating to nearly $800 U.S. dollars.

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“This is direct discrimination for which there can be no justification,” Brownlie said. “The defendants are not a religious organization. They are conducting a business for profit and, notwithstanding their genuine religious beliefs, there are no exceptions available under the 2006 regulations which apply to this case.”

Asher’s Bakery has stated that it is willing to serve homosexuals in general—one would not know about another’s sexual behavior unless they had requested a cake for such reasons—but should not be forced to decorate cakes with messages that urge others to “support gay marriage” in violation of God’s law.

“This has never been about the customer. It has been about a message promoting a cause that contradicts the Bible,” McArthur said.

The McArthur’s therefore appealed the ruling last June, and the case went back to court. In October, the Belfast Court of Appeals concluded that although it is true that the McArthurs did not know Lee’s identity, the bakery still “discriminated against the respondent directly on the grounds of sexual orientation contrary to the Equality Act Regulations 2006″ for not printing the requested message.

The family consequently appealed to the U.K. Supreme Court.

“This is a very important development. The Supreme Court does not consider every case which is brought to its attention and our legal team has already started to prepare for the crucial hearings which lie ahead,” Simon Calvert of the Christian Institute noted.

“We understand the Supreme Court will hear initial arguments from which they will then determine if they are to grant a full appeal hearing. If the judges agree to the appeal it will take place immediately during the two days set aside for the case to be discussed,” he explained.

As previously reported, in April 2015, an appeals court in Kentucky overturned a guilty verdict against Christian screenprinter Hands on Originals, stating that the business had a right to decline to print wording on t-shirts for a “gay pride” event.

The court noted that from 2010-2012 Hands on Originals declined 13 orders from various groups because of the message that was to be printed.

“Those print orders that were refused by HOO included shirts promoting a strip club, pens promoting a sexually explicit video and shirts containing a violence-related message,” it explained. “There is further evidence in the Commission record that it is standard practice within the promotional printing industry to decline to print materials containing messages that the owners do not want to support.”

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  • Amos Moses

    not much to pin your hopes on …………

  • Michael C

    I don’t presume to know the laws in Ireland but I hope their Supreme Court overturns the lower court’s ruling.

    In my opinion, this is not discrimination on the basis of the customer’s sexual orientation and is much, much different than the cases we’ve seen here with wedding vendors. For the same reason that a bakery would not be required to decorate a cake that says “Christ is the one true God,” “Vote Trump,” or “Marriage = 1 Man + 1 Woman,” I don’t believe this bakery should be required to decorate a cake with this political slogan.

    If this bakery had refused to sell the customer a product that was no different than what they regularly offer to the general public, it would be an entirely different matter.

    In this case, I side with the bakery.

    • SFBruce

      I agree with what you’re saying. As far as I’m aware, the case against the Kleins’ was exactly as you put it: they refused to sell a product to gay people they sell to straight people everyday.

      • Sharon_at_home

        They wouldn’t /shouldn’t sell a cake to anyone – as Michael C. pointed out – because of what they wanted put on the cake. I thought they should have made a cake and the people could have the writing put on at home. Many people do that instead of asking a bakery to do it.
        They did sell any of their products to the men previously, but just refused to put the promotion of something their faith is opposed to on a cake especially if it will be in public view. That would be like condoning the sin they oppose. Unless this is a different case than I’m thinking of.
        If it does sell cakes promoting sin to straight people, then they should to gays; but I’d be betting they wouldn’t sell anyone a cake they considered was promoting a sin.
        Would that make a difference to the case, do you know?

    • james blue

      I agree with you on how the case is different.

    • Tangent002

      I agree. In the United States, the ruling would have been quite different.

      • Sisyphus

        Of course the ruling would have been different in the US. Courts in the UK do not have the power ​of Judicial Review as we know it in the US. The British court would rule on the merits of how the law was applied to this specific case with no consideration of any larger constitutional questions. Primarily because the UK does not have a written Constitution, and practices Parliamentary supremecy. The court would only rule on whether the law was applied as written.

        • Tangent002


        • Ambulance Chaser

          They don’t? Our legal system is based on the English common law system.

          • Sisyphus

            No written Constitution in the UK, and Parliamentary supremacy hence no judicial review regarding constitutional questions. Comparative Politics apparently was an elective in your undergrad years.

          • Ambulance Chaser

            I’m not sure why I deserve that kind of nasty hostility. Regardless of whether there’s a constitution, there is judicial review, just not of Parliamentary laws. There’s an entire Wikipedia article on Judicial Review in English Law.

          • Sisyphus

            I guess I wasn’t clear in my comment, the type of judicial review in the UK regards reviewing a ruling of a lower court, but keeping the goal of determining if a court has correctly applied a criminal or civil law, passed by Parliament. The Supreme Court does not have the power, in the UK, to declare a law unconstitutional. The Magna Carta may the closest thing to a codified Constitution for The United Kingdom.

            There seems to be growing evidence I can be nasty and hostile, something I should consider. I’ve always considered you and I to be on the same page, so I apologise.

          • Ambulance Chaser

            Okay, apology accepted. I will, likewise, do my best not to insult you also and if I do, I apologize in advance.

    • You’re lying. You hate them, but you think your hate is overly exposed in this case.

      • Parodyx

        There is nothing in Michael C’s post that suggests hate. Unlike yourself, he has not proposed killing homosexuals.

        • There is indeed nothing. It doesn’t agree with his other posts, which is why I say he’s lying. And yes, homosexuals should be executed, but my grandchildren are not yet in government.

          • Parodyx

            Um…you know that’s sick, right?

          • It’s a dirty job, but it’s got to be done.

          • Ambulance Chaser

            Flagged, for advocating mass murder.

          • Parodyx

            I think a few others need to flag it. I can’t believe it is still there.

          • Michael C

            Unfortunately, I just don’t see that happening. A few days ago, someone directly told me “Your [sic] a sodomite, ok then yeah you need to be put down.” and the comment was never deleted, the person is still advocating for the execution of all gay people, and no Christians on this website has rebuked these comments.

          • Parodyx

            It should go without saying that genocidal statements on any forum should be instantly reported. I believe David should not just banned but charged.

          • Julie Ann

            But it’s ok for muslims to advocate threatening mass murder and actually carrying it out.

          • Michael C


            Can you even hear yourself?

          • Ambulance Chaser

            No, no one said that.

          • Leviticus 20:13 If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.
            There you go. Be triggered.

          • Parodyx

            One of your vile comments got removed. We are working on the other one.

          • You’re astroturfing. What a bunch of heroes you are.

          • Parodyx

            Yeah, call me funny, but genocidal statements are kind of not made by normal people.

          • Michael C

            It doesn’t agree with his other posts, which is why I say he’s lying.

            My comment history is not set to private. Anyone can feel free to peruse every comment I’ve made.

            I have comments going back two years that express these exact same opinions. Two years ago, I said the following;
            “I agree with the court that overruled the Lexington-Fayette Human Rights Commission’s charge of discrimination.”

          • You are the aggressor in this forum.

  • yabruf

    Wow I imagine this court case being heard in the city of Sodom. They actually think they will get an impartial judge and a moral ruling in a country that panders to reprobate’s?

    I couldn’t imagine being a Christian in the UK. My pastor was banned from the country just for reading what the Bible says about sodomites!

    • William of Glynn

      Steven Anderson is not a Christian pastor.

      • yabruf

        Yep not only pastors but radio talk show hosts as well.
        If you are not marching lock step with the government brainwashed lemmings, then you are banned.

        • William of Glynn

          The UK only bans for just cause. Not all pastors and not all radio talk show hosts are banned.

        • Peter Leh

          the gospel is still being preached without interference in the UK.

          • MCrow

            Truth. My ex was a Christian from the UK. It remains a big part of her life. She gets confused with people who want to mix Church and State, though

    • Chris

      “They actually think they will get an impartial judge and a moral ruling in a country that panders to reprobate’s?”

      No, they don’t pander to fundies in the UK.

  • Reason2012

    Now you know why the activists wanted same-gender marriage: legal sledgehammer to go after Christian businesses who have no problem serving those into homosexuality but refuse to support sinful ACTS – huge difference.

    • Ambulance Chaser

      Why does having gay marriage be legal grant anyone a “legal sledgehammer?”

  • Grace Kim Kwon

    The West and its servant nations must stop persecuting the moral people for refusing to serve the homosexual depravity. Everyone has rights to sane morality. What a tragedy for mankind to face the Sodomic West only a few decades after the racist West. Pervs are far worse than the racists because Western Sodom ruins global children by prohibiting morality.

    The West must stop doing evil and return to Biblical Christian teachings to regain sanity and morality. The West has no conscience or morality other than the Judeo-Christian values; that’s why Ex-christian Western secularism runs after abnormal immorality today. It was Nazi Germany 80 years ago; it’s Sodomic UK and Sodomic USA today. American Christians must not stay silent as German churches were.

  • Julie Ann

    What if the same spdomite went to a MUSLIM owned bakery and asked for the SAME thing on the cake? I don’t think it would even go to court, and if it didn’t go to court, the Muslim would be suing for insulting Islam!

    • Julie Ann

      Why didn’t the sodomite just go to a gay-owned bakery? By them choosing to do business with a Christian owned bakery, they are actually financially supporting the Christian bakery by buying a cake there, and by going to the Christian bakery, they are putting their dollars towards christians by growing the business and the money the gay gave them would most likely go to a Christian cause, which they claim to hate, thereby ultimately spreading the gospel of Jesus christ

      • Seaside Delilah

        They are looking for trouble that’s why they don’t go to a gay own bakery. By screaming discrimination they breed attention to the whole LGBT queue movement and trying to win sympathy. Not to mention a whole Lotta money from A lawsuit they will undoubtedly file.

  • MyLady1

    I think people who go to Christian businesses and then sue and complain because they won’t do what is bad, must do it on purpose. If I went to an atheist, or whatever, bakery and they wouldn’t make a cake that said, “Praise God!”, or whatever, I’d just go to a bakery that would. If I knew it was an atheist bakery, though, I wouldn’t have gone there in the first place and offended them, and I’d rather give my money to a Christian place who holds my same beliefs. Just go to places that have your beliefs or doesn’t care, instead of going places and instigating. The going there and causing trouble is what, I think, a lot of people don’t like. I don’t. I was at a beach in Ca. A couple came and took off all their clothes. There were little kids there and people like me who didn’t want to see their naked bodies. There were many nude beaches they could have gone to. Why didn’t they? Maybe there was some dire reason, in which case they should have worn bathing suits.