Meet the Next Christian Martyrs

The owners of a pizzeria in the small town of Walkerton, Indiana are the latest victims of the Gaystapo. All they did was announce that they would be using that state’s new RFRA law to refuse to send pizzas to a gay wedding (news flash: they didn’t need that law to do that) and Big Gay descended on them like rabid dogs to take away their God-given right to be bigots.

After Crystal and Kevin O’Connor of Memories Pizza appeared on ABC 57 to declare their support for Governor Mike Pence and the controversial Religious Freedom Restoration Act yesterday, the backlash was immediate.

“If a gay couple came in and wanted us to provide pizzas for their wedding, we would have to say no,” Crystal said as she stood in the restaurant, which is festooned with Christian paraphernalia.

“We’re not discriminating against anyone, that’s just our belief and anyone has the right to believe in anything,” she added. “I do not think it’s targeting gays. I don’t think it’s discrimination. It’s supposed to help people that have a religious belief.”

First, I was giddy to see the word “festooned” used in that quote. Second, that last paragraph is hilariously stupid. You can’t say in one breath that you would refuse to serve a gay wedding and in the next breath that you’re not discriminating against anyone. If you’re refusing service, you are — by definition — discriminating. That’s what the word means.

Their Yelp page was descended on and some of the most hilarious reviews were posted. But this one I don’t buy:

“This is a transparent attempt to fly the Christian martyr ‘mean Gays are calling us bigots’ flag in the hopes that other mouth-breathers in the area will rally to them and their crappy pizza the way Southerners rallied to Chick Fil-A.”

I think that’s giving these people way too much credit for being clever enough to think up such a strategy. If that happens, and I doubt it will, that will be an unintended consequence. So will the fact that they’ll soon be able to make money on the Christian rubber chicken circuit telling the harrowing tale of their persecution by the homofascists.

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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • John Pieret

    “We’re not discriminating against anyone, that’s just our belief and anyone has the right to believe in anything,”

    Well, then, you can’t blame anyone who believes you are fucking bigots and acts on their beliefs by writing nasty reviews of your place or organizing a boycott or picketing your hole in the wall … right?

  • Sastra

    “We’re not discriminating against anyone, that’s just our belief and anyone has the right to believe in anything,”

    Right here is one of the main problems with privileging “faith.” Being immune from government control or coercion is too happily translated into being safe from criticism, critique, mockery, expressions of disapproval, and any and all standards of common sense, decency, and epistemic responsibility.

    “I am allowed to believe ANYTHING I WANT because I called ‘Faith‘!!!” It’s like little kids introducing new rules during a game which they’re losing.

  • John Pieret

    Sastra:

    Religion as Calvinball.

  • http://www.ranum.com Marcus Ranum

    There’s a kickstarter to give them money – because: prosecution. So far hatred has netted them $100k+

  • wreck

    How much wedding business does a pizzeria get anyway? Oh, right, it’s Indiana.

  • hunter

    Who on earth would want to serve take-out pizza at their wedding reception?

  • felicis

    Well – someone started a fund for them and it’s broken $135 K since yesterday. Assuming the money makes it to them (they didn’t start it), they’ll be making pretty good money for their ‘persecution’.

  • John Pieret

    Here’s the GoFundMe page apparently started by Glenn Beck’s The Blaze:

    http://www.gofundme.com/memoriespizza

    And who said bigotry doesn’t pay?

  • alanb

    Bob and Kevin are delighted to invite you to a reception at the Four Seasons to celebrate their marriage. Please RSVP with a choice of mushroom or pepperoni and PBR or Bud.

  • felicis

    Marcus – are you talking about the GoFundMe one? That’s at $144K now… I wonder how many there are, and if the Pizza people will actually get the money?

  • dingojack

    Well this is close!

    Dingo

  • http://www.ranum.com Marcus Ranum

    Who on earth would want to serve take-out pizza at their wedding reception?

    Someone who isn’t wealthy? Your privilege is showing…

  • raven

    Cafeteria xians again.

    Why don’t they stop serving adulterers, sabbath breakers, atheists, novirgin bride weddings, and divorced people? All these are major sins in one xian cult or another.

    According to god’s magic book, 4 of those are death penalty sins.

    PS About all I got out of watching this is that Indiana is a pretty dismal place and I wouldn’t want to go there. Then again, I had no interest in going there anyway.

  • A Masked Avenger

    #5, #6, and #9,

    Please RSVP with a choice of mushroom or pepperoni and PBR or Bud.

    How delightfully classist!

    I don’t have statistics handy, but lots of people are unable to afford the $25K that is the average cost of a wedding today. I’ve been to several weddings that were “catered” with chicken from the grocery story deli department, or with pizza, or for the really impecunious, run as a potluck.

    My own wedding reception was at a fancy restaurant, but with a twist: they have no dance floor, so they’re an unpopular venue, and they give discounts outside normal business hours, so my afternoon, non-dancing, no-open-bar reception was about $12 a plate. That’s comparable to the cost of a pizza reception, when you factor in the venue. I paid for it by selling my used SUV, and taking the bus to work for the next few years.

    But yeah, poor people are so hilarious, with their pizza-eating and their budweiser-drinking. They must be laughing all the time at the absurdity of themselves.

  • raven

    I don’t have statistics handy, but lots of people are unable to afford the $25K that is the average cost of a wedding today.

    QFT.

    1. One of the more deleterious trends today is the incredible cost of college and the student loans to pay for them. Kids getting out of college often owe $25,000 to $100,000.

    Another is the few good jobs for long employment market these days.

    2. This is new. When I graduated from a good and heavily subsidized state U, I owed exactly zero dollars. (I also had exactly zero dollars.) Not unusual and even the student loans were in the thousands, not tens of thousands.

    3. Unless you are rich or have rich and indulgent parents, why spend money you don’t have for one day? It’s guaranteed you will need it sooner rather than later.

    It never occurred to me to order pizza for a wedding but the idea has possibilities. The best weddings I’ve gone to have been Pagan ones and they are always creative and usually outdoors. The church ones are trite and boring and these days, I have no interest in going to a xian anything ceremony.

  • flex

    run as a potluck.

    Hey. We could have afforded a more expensive wedding, but we wanted a potluck.

    So we had one. It was nice.

    No offense taken.

  • http://artk.typepad.com ArtK

    @ A Masked Avenger

    Yes, all of the “who would have the bad taste to serve pizza at a wedding” posts are starting to bug me for the reasons that you cite. They are distracting from the important point here, which is the fact that the pizzeria announced that they were going to be in the forefront of discrimination and are too stupid to understand that what they were going to do was discrimination.

    The GoFundMe is depressing, but unsurprising. Given the propensity for right wing causes to have the money go to enrich everyone but the intended beneficiary, I’ll be surprised if they see much of it. On the other hand, the proprietors will be able to dine out on the Christian rubber-martyr circuit for at least a year on this. Perhaps they can get onto the same tour that Joe the not-Plumber is on. Or team up with the various oppressed florists and photographers. Martyrpalooza! Emceed by “Coach” Dave and John Freshwater.

  • Chiroptera

    I think that pizza at a wedding reception is an excellent ideal. But then, I really, really like pizza. I even like “bad” pizza.

    …which is festooned with Christian paraphernalia.

    Well, okay, actually I probably wouldn’t like pizza that is festooned with Jesus junk.

    I wish more bigots would advertise that they have a bigoted establishment so that I would know to stay away. They wouldn’t even have to festoon anything; a simple Jesus fish on the front door would be good enough.

  • http://www.facebook.com/eo.raptor.3 eoraptor

    Too lazy to look up the citation, but an article yesterday said they were getting death threats, and other kinds of crazy emails, like atheists get when they stand up for their rights. As a consequence, they’ve gone dark until things settle down. Now, whether there really were such emails, or where they actually came from, is a whole nother kettle of fish.

  • http://www.facebook.com/eo.raptor.3 eoraptor

    Here’s a reference.

  • Nick Gotts

    You can’t say in one breath that you would refuse to serve a gay wedding and in the next breath that you’re not discriminating against anyone. If you’re refusing service, you are — by definition — discriminating.

    Ah, but discrimination is bad; they know that. They’re refusing to serve out of religious belief, so it can’t be bad.

  • chuckster

    But all the week the defense of libertarians was if you discriminate word will get out and you will be forced to change or go out of business.

    When it works just like they described they cry fool.

  • llewelly

    Fact is cake in general is usually mediocre and wedding cake in particular is often craptacular. It’s made to look fancy, not taste good. That’s why so many people often have wedding cake in their freezer years after the wedding. They’ll never eat it, because they know it’s dreadful.

  • http://www.pandasthumb.org Area Man

    “We’re not discriminating against anyone, that’s just our belief…

    This again. “Belief” and “faith” are used as terms that indicate a total lack of moral accountability. They’ve internalized the idea that religion is a disease they’ve caught and can’t do anything about, and that beliefs of a religious nature deserve to be held to a lesser standard.

  • sugarfrosted

    @19 Fischer was comparing it to “Kristalnacht.” Remember how that ended with angry emails and no shops getting smashed/burned? And how it wasn’t incited by the government? I do.

  • Alverant

    #13

    What got lost in the shuffle is that the restaurant said it wouldn’t serve non-christian weddings either. So if you had an Atheist, jewish, wiccan, etc style wedding she’d site her religious beliefs as an excuse to discriminate there too.

  • Al Dente

    raven @13

    About all I got out of watching this is that Indiana is a pretty dismal place and I wouldn’t want to go there. Then again, I had no interest in going there anyway.

    But Indiana has Krazy Kaplan’s Fireworks.

  • D. C. Sessions

    Pizza? Hmmm. Around here there aren’t a lot of good venues for wedding receptions, but one of the nicer ones is the old Baca [1] Mercantile place, which currently houses an art gallery and a microbrewery with very good pizza … and it has a lovely courtyard that’s available for events.

    Plus excellent beers.

    [1] As in, “Elfego.” He was born when his parents ran it.

  • voyager

    We had a huge pizzeria made lasagna for our wedding with plenty of garlic bread and a Dairy Queen wedding cake. It was one of the hottest days of the year and that wedding cake was like heaven. We could have spent more, but instead we put a down payment on a house. A wedding is only a single day and I never did understand all the fuss made about what is basically throwing a party.

  • macallan

    I don’t have statistics handy, but lots of people are unable to afford the $25K that is the average cost of a wedding today.

    Mine cost a little over $100. Most of that went to the county clerk for a marriage license. I have no idea why people feel obliged to bankrupt themselves like that.