A Colorado Court of Appeals has just ruled against Jack Phillips, owner of Masterpiece Cake Shop, who refuses to sell wedding cakes to same-sex couples.
A Colorado Court of Appeals finds there is no difference between discriminating against someone because they are gay and discriminating against someone because they are marrying someone of the same gender.
Jack Phillips appealed a December 2013 decision by a Colorado state judge, who had ruled Phillips violated the state's nondiscrimination laws by refusing to bake a wedding cake for David Mullins and Charlie Craig in 2012. Phillips, owner of Masterpiece Cake Shop, claimed in his appeal that the case should have been dismissed. His attorneys argued that because Phillips sold his baked goods to LGBT people but refused to bake a same-sex couple a wedding cake, due to his religious beliefs, he did not violate the law.
Today all three Colorado Court of Appeals judges upheld the lower court's ruling.
Loeb wrote that Colorado's nondiscrimination law, CADA, "was not designed to impede religious conduct and does not impose burdens on religious conduct not imposed on secular conduct."
"The decision to categorically deny service to Craig and Mullins was based only on their request for a wedding cake and Masterpiece's own beliefs about same-sex marriage."
The decision also states, "we reiterate that CADA does not compel Masterpiece to support or endorse any particular religious views. The law merely prohibits Masterpiece from discriminating against potential customers on account of their sexual orientation."
Phillips had lost his case before the Colorado Civil Rights Commission, and also lost his 2014 appeal before the commission.
In 2013 Phillips said he would go to jail rather than obey the commission's decisions.
"Are you willing to go to jail?," he was asked by Fox News' Elizabeth Hasselbeck.
"If that's what it takes," Phillips replied. "I don't believe I need to drop my religious convictions at any time for any reason," he added.
This article has been updated to include a copy of the decision and to note all three judges concurred in their ruling.
See a mistake? Email corrections to: [email protected]