Don't Let Them Eat Cake

Another Bakery Denies Wedding Cake To Gay Couple, Says They Are Victims

111-cakeryThe Christian Right really has become the most boring group of political activists in America. As their battle against marriage equality slides down the slippery slope of failure, they continue to wage war on one of the few battle grounds where they can still amass a few troops: the arena of wedding cakes.

111 Cakery in Indiana made quite a stir when they denied a wedding cake to a man, Mike Stephens, who was planning a reception for himself and his soon-to-be-husband. (Congratulations to them! L’chaim!)

Stephens, like any self-respecting gay, threw a hissy-fit and went to the local news. An unnamed member of the McGrath family, who owns 111 Cakery, posted a message on their Facebook page explaining the following (grammar and spelling errors are theirs):

As artist we must find the inspiration to create something special for our clients. When asked to do a cake for an occasion or with a theme (alcohol explicit in nature) that is in opposition to our faith, that inspiration is not found… Why would you want a cake that is less then inspired for your special event. That is why this week we told a man that requested a cake for a same sex ceremony that it was against our policy but we would be happy to help him with anything else. It was not that we wanted to deny them a cake it’s just tough to create something that goes against your beliefs.

First, let us applaud whoever wrote this post. It is a master class in passive-aggressive tactics. The “hate the sin, love the sinner” argument is often used against the LGBT community to displace responsibility for bigotry, but it has a special layer of sugary friendliness here. It’s okay that you think we’re going to hell! We can still be friends while we’re alive!

However, their logic is interesting: They are happy to serve the public, but only when the public meets their standards of approval. Let’s all live life this way. From now on, we refuse to acknowledge the existence of anyone who: (1) wears Mom jeans, (2) eats at Chick-fil-A because “it’s been long enough,” or (3) listens to the Demi Lovato version of “Let It Go” instead of the Idina Menzel original, and the fact that there even is a Demi Lovato version is almost too much to handle. Nope! Not talking to them. When they play by our rules, we’ll be happy to allow them to walk among us.

This is similar to hotels owned by Christians that denied renting rooms to Jews, which was a common practice well into the middle of the 20th century. Country clubs are still famous for excluding Jews, and there was even an episode of The Golden Girls about it! The Mortimer Club wouldn’t let Sophia’s Jewish friend come to a party! Business owners claim they are simply expressing their religious beliefs, and shouldn’t they be given the freedom of religion?

In America we all have the right to hold our own beliefs, and although we must accept everybody, there is no rule saying we must like everybody. So do we require these businesses to bake the damned cakes, or do we want to know where these bigots are, so we can avoid them? Because who wants a wedding cake that was baked by a gay-hater who may or may not have spit in the batter? Gross.

However, if a business wants to serve the public, they must serve the public. To attract their preferred clients, they could promote themselves as a “Christian bakery,” but that turns the “Christian” label into something hateful that excludes people, and there are lots of Christian bakers who would be horrified at the thought of denying a loving gay couple the chance to have a lovely wedding cake. (…or a wedding, for that matter.)

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  • mykelb

    There needs to be a marketing campaign aimed specifically at religious bigots where they are STICKERED on their business doors and windows with the sign of a cross that is burning.

  • ouragannyc

    “…That is why this week we told a man that requested a cake for a same sex ceremony that it was against our policy but we would be happy to help him with anything else…”
    If they are a cakery and the man wanted them to bake him a cake, what else could they help him with?

  • Scribe38

    Damn this pisses me off. Imagine going to a bakery for years with no issues buying birthday cakes and pies and whatever. You meet this really nice dude, date for a while, maybe even hit the bakery for some coffee and slice of pie after a movie. So the awesome BF ask to marry you and you agree;in and you ask the bakery you have been such a good client for to make your cake. The owner says we won’t make gay wedding cakes but we can help you out with anything else you need. I would sue the heck out of these people, if only to recoup the money I had spent in the place.
    If you don’t want to serve me let me know ahead of time.

  • Steve Rider

    Clearly the person posting on Facebook needs help. First they say that they do not want to deny a cake to this customer, then they refuse a cake to this person. Some sort of a psychological problem is forcing this individual to act against his or her will.

    It’s conceivable this person is afraid of some sort of an invisible monster that lives in the sky and is just waiting for an excuse to punish them. You can see how a person suffering from this kind of a delusion might behave strangely.

  • Steve Rider


    Can a person bake intolerance? They seem to have that.

  • Dakotahgeo

    Take ’em to Court… sue them for everything they’ve got and they can bake and sell cakes to themselves at home. Typical hillbilly-educated hicks!

  • MphsThomas

    inspired creation cakes baked with faith, hmmmm. and what exactly is your policy? I’m guessing bigotry.

  • ait10101

    Next thing you know they will be committing suicide because they can’t take the bullying. Right.

  • Harley

    I don’t agree with suing. That gives fuel to the fire for the bigots in the legislatures across this country to try to pass laws allowing businesses to deny services to people based on “sincerely held beliefs” whatever the hell that is. What we do have is the first amendment and we can spread the word and make sure people know this bakery is run by bigots. Like George Tekei said “we will not come, we will not shop, we will not spend”. They will get the message soon enough. Besides, who wants some bleeding guy nailed to a cross on top of a wedding cake anyway. Yuk.

  • Steve Rider

    @ait10101: They could send the People’s Front of Judea and perform mass revenge suicide. That would show us!

  • tricky ricky

    I’d would buy jack sh*t at a bakery where they don’t know the difference between the words then and than.

  • doug105

    Hate the religion, Love the believer. Try telling them that and you will get to see just how much they really believe in it.

  • Kangol

    These Christianist fanatics are just like the [email protected] segregationists of the past. They are afraid, they’re full of hate, and they oppress others. Shut this store down by boycott and negative posts on Yelp. They can pray for atonement once they’re on the street.

  • DickieJohnson

    All laws allowing bigotry and discrimination should be eliminated, but the bigots are not going away. Just go to another bakery, or whatever, and make it known how they are; no hissy-fits, no lawsuits, simply boycott the places. Eat a different chicken sandwich, or pasta!

  • Cam

    @Harley: said…

    I don’t agree with suing. That gives fuel to the fire for the bigots in the legislatures across this country to try to pass laws allowing businesses to deny services to people based on “sincerely held beliefs” whatever the hell that is

    One thing though, those laws will get struck down in Federal Court. When they do it is another blow to the right wing.

  • chaddyboy6

    You are all missing the point. As idiotic as it is, it is all about freedom of association and the right NOT to deal with whom you do not want to-again, regardless if it is wise or not. As adults, we need to recognize the fact that no everyone is going to like or approve of us(no matter who we are)That is reality. They do not want to deal with what..Find someone who will. Are they foolish, ignorant and bigots…Of course…But when as that really been illegal? Nor should it be. What we do is “out” them(for lack of a better word) and spread the word about their ignorance. Hit them where it hurts…their bank accounts.

    To force someone to deal with you is just as ignorant and foolish. It is the cry of a child, demanding that everyone like them. it is denying the fact that not everyone will like you.

    And to deal with them in a hateful manner or to suggest violence in any manner is not only ignorant but evil. And again, it is the voice of an angry spoiled child not getting their own way. You want to hurt someone physically because they won’t serve you? How is that even logical or rational? You despise and cry out when violence is perpetuated against you yet it okay to be violent against someone who is not even showing force? How irrational is that? And hypocritical I might add.

    I know this is a sensitive issue but do not loss your minds over it and give way to irrational emotions. It does neither side good.

  • Ken

    “Hate the sin, but love the sinner” is just an exercise in relabeling. When they become aware that they can’t make the distinction in real life, they rationalize it by saying that their hatred is really love, because they are loving the sinners by “calling them away from sin.” They’ve slid down a slippery slope until they cannot see that they are blasphemously appropriating a divine prerogative by judging the value of other people’s souls. They reason with a false syllogism: “Christians love everyone, I am a Christian, therefore I love everyone, and the injury I inflict is really love.”

    If anyone says they “hate the sin, but love the sinner,” tell them you are curious. Ask them to show it to you in the Bible. This should be fun. It isn’t there. It isn’t biblical, and it isn’t even Christian.

  • Dez

    It’s not about forcing them to make a cake-it’s about them getting off their damn high horse!

  • BJ McFrisky

    “Because who wants a wedding cake that was baked by a gay-hater who may or may not have spit in the batter?”
    Bingo. Rather than scream and pout and sue, just go somewhere that your business is welcome.
    Or is that too logical for the extremists out there?

    @chaddyboy6: Well said.

  • Cam


    Actually Chad, no insult intended but your comment shows a dangerously naive view of the law. They have a public business licence and by getting that they agree to serve the public, and in turn are served by the public infrastructure that the tax dollars of gay people pay for.

    What if there was only one gas station in a small town and that gas station said they would not sell to black people. They would have effectively made the town unlivable for blacks because they couldn’t drive there.

    That is why, to get a public business license they are required to serve the public. If they want to make cakes restricted by their faith, then they are more than welcome to do it privately or through their church.

  • Harley

    @Cam: I don’t agree with suing the bakery owners. I DO agree with fighting bigoted, segregationist, religious oriented discriminatory laws passes by right wing repugnant-KKKlan senators from these back hole “bug-tussle, Virginia” legislators.

  • Steve Rider

    In the city of Indianapolis it is illegal to “treat a person differently” because of their sexual orientation. This business has broken the law.

    I decided to do some research into what the Bible says about bakers that break the law, it was in Leviticus

    “They have broken the law, surely their icing shall be upon them.”

  • Ken

    As minority groups become mainstreamed, public perception can restrain discrimination. My father told me about businesses with signs in the window, “Help wanted, Irish need not apply.” Imagine how that would go over with the public today.

    A couple of years from now, a few bakeries win a court case and put signs in their windows, “We do not bake wedding cakes for same-sex ceremonies.” They want to appear as upright moral people, but it backfires. By the time they got permission from the court to put up those signs, a gay wedding is as scandalous as an integrated lunch counter to most people.

    The bakery is puzzled that they have lost their gay customers. After all, they would happily bake anything but a wedding cake for them, why don’t they come for croissants? For most of their heterosexual customers, the sign looks nonsensical, quirky, or odd, as if it had said “we do not bake cakes for Irish weddings.” They see the sign and keep walking. (Most white people wouldn’t go to a whites-only restaurant, if it were possible to have one.) Eventually the bakery’s clientele is limited to people who agree with the sign or simply don’t notice it. Margins being what they are, that’s not enough customers to sustain their business. Right as they go out of business, they walk past the bakery down the block and see it filled with their former customers.

  • Ken

    @Dez: As recently as the Civil War, there was no birth control. Consequently, women spent most of their time being pregnant, caring for small children, managing the domestic staff, and running small businesses on the side out of the home. For the most part, their husbands were their only means of support. In biblical times, Jewish woman had no motivation for divorce. The husband was obligated to support his wife, but the wife weren’t obligated to have sex with her husband. Only a man could initiate divorce, because only a man would want to. (In the same era, however, Roman women could divorce their husbands.)

    The prohibition on divorce for any reason other than adultery was not so much about divorce as it was about women’s rights. A man might want to divorce his faithful wife after she had borne him 12 children and been through menopause and then marry a trophy wife. That would leave his first wife destitute, hence laws against divorce.

    This is the reason why a rapist had to marry his victim, as repulsive as that sounds to us today. After the woman was raped, no one would marry her, and she would be destitute for the rest of her life. If the rapist married her, he would have to pay the ancient equivalent of alimony for the rest of her life, but she would have no obligation to have sex with him.

    In that culture context, laws prohibiting divorce were really about protecting women’s rights. Marriage for love is quite recent, otherwise Romeo and Juliet would have been a very short play.

  • jar

    @chaddyboy6: Wonderful satire, chaddyboy. Decrying others as whining children by adopting the voice of a whiny child. Well done.
    The facebook post is actually quite interesting. It appears the bakery got some advice from the right wing cabal on first amendment rights. Note the emphasis on “art.” This is used to bolster their claim because public accommodations laws do not cover artistic activities. The bakery is making two claims: (i) I don’t have to bake the cake because it contravenes my free expression of religion; and (ii) I can’t be compelled because I am engaged in artistic expression. Both of them are losing legal arguments. The law is clear, if you have a business license, you must comply with the business laws of the state issuing the license.

  • gskorich

    honestly, aren’t there enough gay bakers, florists, wedding planners, caters and what not so the gay community can stop bothering these Christians with revenue and profits?

  • Tommy

    Is it that serious? It’s not like they are asking you to attend the wedding. All they are asking you is to bake a cake (as you normally would), and replace the bride with another groom. It’s that simple.

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