Arizona Court Rules Artists Cannot Be Forced to Create Custom Invitations for LGBTQ Wedding

by admin on September 18, 2019

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The Arizona Supreme Court recently ruled that two Pheonix business owners had their freedom of speech and freedom of religion violated by being compelled to create custom invitations for a same-sex wedding.

The case involved a city ordinance prohibiting discrimination based on “sexual orientation, gender identity or expression”.

Under that law, businesses cannot turn away services to consumers based solely on their identity.

Christian artists Joanna Duka and Breanna Koski, who believe marriage should only be between a man and woman, faced $2,500 in fines and up to six months in jail if they were convicted of violating the city law.

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But the Arizona high court voted 4-3 in the women’s favor.

“Duka and Koski’s beliefs about same-sex marriage may seem old-fashioned, or even offensive to some,” Justice Andrew Gould stated. “But the guarantees of free speech and freedom of religion are not only for those who are deemed sufficiently enlightened, advanced, or progressive.”

The court, however, said the ruling only applied to custom invitations and isn’t a blanket statement on whether or not businesses can invoke religious beliefs to deny service to customers based on sexual orientation.

A 2018 US Supreme Court ruling that ruled in favor of a Colorado baker declining to bake a wedding cake for a same-sex couple also didn’t definitely address the issue.

Read the full story here.

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