US baker must make gay cakes

An appeals court ruled on Thursday that a Colorado baker cannot refuse to sell wedding cakes to same-sex couples because it goes against his religious beliefs.

The decision comes nearly two months after a landmark Supreme Court decision legalised gay marriage across the United States.

Masterpiece Cakeshop has joined a growing number of businesses successfully sued for discriminating against gay couples.

However, businesses in more than half of the United Sates are still legally allowed to refuse gay customers because 29 states don’t prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation.

Charlie Craig and David Mullins filed a complaint under Colorado’s anti-discrimination laws when baker Jack Phillips told them in 2012 he wouldn’t make them a cake due to his religious beliefs.

The state did not recognise gay marriage at the time, but did prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation.

Phillips argued that being required to make wedding cakes for gay couples violated his right to freedom of religion and free speech.

The state’s appeals court disagreed, arguing in a 66-page ruling that requiring someone to comply with the law is not the same as compelling someone to “endorse” something they don’t agree with.

Source: AFP