On March 24, the Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies concluded that Azucar Bakery was within its rights when it refused to fulfill a client’s wishes for a cake condemning homosexuality.
Earlier in March, William Jack requested Azucar Bakery to bake him a cake in the shape of an open Bible, with the verses “God hates sin,” from Psalm 45:7 and “Homosexuality is a detestable sin,” from Leviticus 18:22 on one side of the cake. On the other side he wanted “God loves sinners” and “While we were yet sinners, Christ died for us,” from Romans 5:8. In addition, he wanted a decoration of two groomsmen holding hands with a large “X” across them. His request for the cake was denied, on grounds that it was derogatory.
Marjorie Silva, the owner of the bakery, agreed to make the cakes with the condition that she would not write any of the statements that Jack requested. The owner said she would give Jack frosting to make the designs and phrases if he wanted. Jack filed a complaint with the Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies on grounds of religious discrimination. The customer argued that he was discriminated against because of his Christian beliefs. The ruling, however, was that Silva’s refusal had nothing to do with religious affiliation.
“The evidence demonstrates that [Silva] would deny such requests to any customer, regardless of creed,” stated the decision.
Jack plans to appeal the decision, stating that the ruling is a double standard. He refers to the case almost a year ago that involved a bakery refusing to bake a wedding cake for a gay couple’s wedding. Masterpiece Cakeshop, the bakery in question, was found guilty of discrimination in May of 2014. The owner agreed to bake cupcakes, desserts, and other goods as long as it was not a wedding cake; it was against his beliefs to participate in the wedding ceremony.
Conservatives, such as the Alliance Defending Freedom, supported the decision against Jack, but were troubled by the double standard that came with it. Jack had filed complaints against two other bakeries on grounds for religious discrimination.
“The commission found that these three cake artists have the freedom to decline creating unique cake creations because the artists found the requests offensive," said Jeremy Tedesco of the Alliance Defending Freedom. "But all Americans should be alarmed that the same commission determined that Jack doesn’t have that same freedom," he said in reference to the ruling for Masterpiece Cakeshop.