As a girl, I never dreamt of marrying in the church, yet I will be doing just that in May.
I was excited to take my now husband to the city I had considered home for many years. It was going to be his first time in New York City, having lived his whole adult life in the Pacific Northwest. I had lived in New York City for several years before moving to Washington State and I was excited to show him the city.
On Tuesday, the Supreme Court of the United States will hear a case about whether religious beliefs give businesses that are open to the public a right to discriminate. The case is about David Mullins and Charlie Craig, who visited Masterpiece Cakeshop in 2012 to order a cake for their upcoming wedding reception.
This week, the United States Supreme Court announced it will hear a case about whether a business can refuse to sell commercial goods to a gay couple because of the business owner’s religious beliefs.
As a baker and small business owner, I meet all kinds of people. I am truly blessed to have a job where I get to wake up each day and make people happy. People come into my bakery looking for sweets to celebrate life’s most special moments.
The senseless murders at Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina, startled many because they raised the ongoing issues of racial prejudice, gun violence, and how people from all walks of life become innocent victims of terror, hate, and discrimination.
We are not the same America.
We are not the same America that we were 20 or even 10 years ago. For decades, civil liberties framed the discourse about lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) justice. Now marriage, a union that is sacred for so many, is at the forefront of our national consciousness in ways we could not conceive. Now, more than ever, we cannot omit religion.
Two years ago, the day after our engagement, Thos and I stood at this very place in front of the Supreme Court. We took an active part in a rally on front of the steps of the United States Supreme Court on the day oral arguments were heard for the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and California’s Proposition 8 ban against same sex marriage.
As we await rulings from the Supreme Court on four marriage equality cases, it is no coincidence that so-called "religious freedom restoration" acts are popping up across the country to sanction discrimination by businesses, employers and public officials. Echoes of the civil rights movement serve as an important reminder that marriage is not a fix-all.
With thirty-seven states now legal proponents of marriage equality (LGBTQ Americans and allies alike) knew it would be just a matter of time before the issue would be brought to U. S. Supreme Court.