The United States of America is supposed to be a land of liberty, where individuals are free to live as they want as long as they don’t harm others around them.
Sadly, it looks like that ideal is slowly being twisted into state-enforced conformity: Either you do what others demand, or pay the price.
For Aaron and Melissa Klein, that price was steep — $135,000 to be exact. That’s the penalty they were ordered to pay after they declined at their bakery in Oregon to make a custom cake for a lesbian wedding.
“Laurel Bowman-Cryer and her wife Rachel sued after the Kleins refused to bake a cake for them,” reported Fox News. “Rachel Campos-Duffy reported that the women claimed the incident caused weight gain and was akin to being ‘mentally raped.’”
Yes, the lesbian couple’s hysterical claims of victimhood now include “cake rape” and getting fat. Back in the real world, the court’s order has had a dramatic impact on the Christian small-business owners.
“It’s definitely been hard on our family. It’s taken a toll on our family,” Melissa Klein said during an interview with Fox.
The husband and wife said they intend to fight the court’s ruling, which has essentially shut down their custom cake business and pushed the family into financial difficulty.
Michael Berry, an attorney from First Liberty Institute who is representing the Klein’s, had sharp words for the court’s decision.
“If you look at the court’s opinion […] one of the the things the court said was, they didn’t think that custom designing and making a custom wedding cake is a form of art,” he said.
“As the ACLU themselves said, freedom of expression for ourselves means we have to allow freedom of expression for others,” Berry continued.
“Aaron and Melissa Klein just want the same basic treatment that everybody else in this country wants and deserves.”
The Fox News reporter asked an obvious question: Could this ruling affect other people, including liberal workers and business owners who might be forced to provide a service that goes against their beliefs?