Barronelle Stutzman is 72-year-old floral artist tending to her flowers when a long-time customer — and dear friend named Rob Ingersoll — walked into Arlene’s Flowers with happy news: he was getting married.
Barronelle, a Christian, was happy for him but she knew she couldn’t make floral arrangements for his same sex wedding. Instead, she recommended other florists in the area who would do a fantastic job. Ingersoll sued Stutzman, of course, even though they’d been friends for years. He even had indicated to her that he understood her religious convictions stood in the way of the job. Regardless, the state of Washington ruled today that Barronell can not legally run her business according to her values.
This is a BIG DEAL for all Americans who love freedom.
If a gay company owner doesn’t want to make a floral arrangement at a straight wedding – WE SHOULDN’T make them!! This is nuts.
Small businesses are the heart of America and no one should have to sacrifice their beliefs because someone gets their poor feelings hurt.
Her attorneys at the Alliance Defending Freedom explain more reasons why this is an important case:
She serves everyone in her community, regardless of their race, sex, religion, or sexual orientation. But even though she serves all people, she cannot use her artistic skills to celebrate all events. In particular, because of her beliefs about marriage, she cannot design custom floral arrangements for a same-sex wedding (although she would be happy to sell premade arrangements or raw flowers to couples planning such an event).
So while she has been glad to serve Rob Ingersoll, a gay man and one of her all-time favorite customers, for nearly a decade (and would be happy to continue doing so today), she could not use her artistic talents for one request—to create custom arrangements designed to celebrate his nuptials.
Next stop? The U.S. Supreme Court.
If she ultimately loses, the ACLU will come after this grandmother for over a million dollars worth of attorneys’ fees. This must be stopped.
Go here to find out more.