NOM BLOG

Christian Bakers Seek Justice in Oregon

 


Aaron and Melissa Klein are devout Christians who owned a small family bakery in Oregon when in 2013 a same-sex couple sought them out to bake a custom-designed cake for their 'wedding' ceremony. Because they believe in the biblical basis for marriage as the union of one man and one woman, the Kleins respectfully declined to devote their artistic talents to a ceremony that violates their religious beliefs. In an all-too-familiar series of events that followed, the lesbian couple took their hurt feelings to the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries and filed a complaint for "discrimination." What has happened since then is an object lesson in intolerance, bias, and - if we're being honest - serious questions about potential collusion in Oregon's judicial system.

Help Us Fight Against Biased Judges Who Punish Christians

Despite his bias and extensive support for one of the chief accusers of the Kleins, the judge did not remove himself from the case. Instead, he not only rejected the Kleins right to uphold their religious views about marriage, he declared them guilty of discrimination and levied a punishment that is truly mind-boggling:

The Kleins were fined $135,000 for the lesbians' hurt feelings over a wedding cake.

Even worse, the couple had to close their family bakery in response to boycotts and negative press coverage. After the case was decided, the administrative judge who so heavily punished this Christian couple sought election to higher office and the media portrayed him as a champion of Oregon's influential gay community.

For over five long years now, this sad case has made its way through the courts, which tragically have upheld both the discrimination charge and the enormous penalty imposed. Now the Kleins have appealed the case to the Oregon Supreme Court.

We fully support Aaron and Melissa Klein, and urge the state Supreme Court to grant review of this case. If they do, we will urge the Court to reverse the ruling.

Help Us Support Christians To Live Out Their Beliefs About Marriage

NOM has been involved in critical court cases like this at the state level and before the U.S. Supreme Court. We currently have a critical legal brief under review in the Supreme Court case of Masterpiece Cakeshop v Colorado where, like what has occurred with Aaron and Melissa Klein, a Christian baker was punished for declining to be involved in something that violates his religious beliefs.

We believe it is outrageous that anyone should be forced to participate in a gay 'wedding' that violates their conscience. And yet, time and again that is exactly what is expected. One court even went so far as to declare that abandoning religious beliefs to personally be part of a same-sex ceremony is "the price of citizenship" one must pay. How outrageous!

Please help us continue to fight for the right of all Americans to remain true to their religious beliefs about marriage. We are helping make a real difference but can continue to do so only if we enjoy your continued financial support. I ask you to consider a gift today of $15, $25, $50, $100 or (if you are able) $250 or more.

I hesitate to point out that none of the lesbian or gay couples who have brought complaints against Christian businesses have ever had difficulty in finding other vendors who were more than happy to provide wedding cakes, invitations, flowers and photographs for their ceremonies. Indeed, the lesbian couple in Oregon easily found another baker to create a 'wedding' cake for them.

But having a ready pool of vendors is not the point of the gay rights extremists who champion these cases against Christians. The point is to force Christians into submission, making people give up their beliefs about the truth of marriage and eroding public support for our to restore marriage to our laws.

NOM commends all those who have fought against this tyranny. We will continue to stand up for those who stand up for the truth of marriage and live out their beliefs at work and in their daily lives. We also will continue to push to restore marriage to our nation's laws.

If you agree with us about the importance of preserving marriage, I ask you to become part of a critical support organization we've formed called Sustaining Members.

Sustaining Members form the backbone of NOM because they provide financial support month in and month out, giving us the stability we need to effectively plan and execute strategies.

As a Sustaining Member, you decide what amount to contribute each month. Some people give as little as $7 monthly while others are able to contribute $100 or more per month. I hope you will consider becoming a Sustaining Member so that we can count on your ongoing support.

The Sustaining Member process is easy to set up and operates seamlessly and transparently. You'll be notified each month when your pledge processes, and you can change your pledge instructions at any time.

Whether you are able to make a one-time donation, or step up to become a Sustaining Member, I hope you will act today.

We are hard at work in the states, and at the federal level, fighting for the rights of people like Aaron and Melissa Klein to act in concert with their beliefs about marriage. Please keep them, and us, in your prayers.

Thank you very much for your consideration.

Faithfully,

Brian S Brown

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