Gay cake case to be heard at Supreme Court sitting in Belfast

02 May, 2018, 01:46 | Author: Gregory Stephens
  • 'Gay cake': Ashers Bakery case to be heard at Supreme Court

The Christian owners of a Belfast bakery who refused to make a cake promoting gay marriage are being forced to act against their consciences and religious beliefs, the supreme court has been told.

A lower court ruled the decision of family-run Ashers not to bake the product iced with the slogan Support Gay Marriage in 2014 was discriminatory after a legal challenge supported by Northern Ireland's Equality Commission.

Mrs McArthur has said she cancelled the order because of her concerns about the slogan, which she said goes against the family's Christian beliefs, not because of Mr Lee's sexual orientation.

Northern Ireland's publicly funded Equality Commission brought a civil action, alleging that the bakery breached its statutory duty not to discriminate on the grounds of sexual orientation.

Mr Lee won the case, with a judge ruling that there was unlawful direct discrimination by the bakery.

Accompanied by his wife Amy, who is expecting their fourth child, Mr McArthur said four years ago his family's business was asked to use their "creative skills to endorse a message at odds with everything we believe - and were sued because we said we couldn't do that".

At the centre of this case is Ashers, a seven-shop bakery business in Belfast whose name derives from Genesis 49:20: "Bread from Asher shall be rich, and he shall yield royal dainties".


He said people across society were anxious about what this could mean.

The controversy first flared when Mr Lee, a member of the LGBT advocacy group Queer Space, ordered a cake featuring Sesame Street puppets Bert and Ernie for a private function marking International Day Against Homophobia.

It was accepted and he paid in full but, two days later, the company called to say it could not proceed due to the message requested.

On Tuesday Mr Scoffield said the case, a simple transaction, raised an issue of principle since those with deeply-held religious or philosophical convictions could be compelled to act against their beliefs.

The firm argued that the cake's message was against the bakers' religious views.

Northern Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom where same-sex marriage is outlawed, with Theresa May's DUP allies staunch opponents of the practice.

This was backed up by the District Court and the High Court. Five Supreme Court judges will hear the arguments in Belfast later on Tuesday.

Recommended:



Popular

Prince Louis Almost Wasn't A Prince (And Charlotte Nearly Wasn't A Princess)
Louis is also the third name of the baby's elder brother, Prince George , whose full name is George Alexander Louis. The document, which was registered on Tuesday, states that Prince Louis was born on April 23 , 2018, at St.

Gibson guitar manufacturer seeking bankruptcy protection
A change in control will be undergone where current stockholders like CEO, Henry Juszkiewicz , will be replaced. The maker of the Gibson guitar has filed for bankruptcy protection after wrestling for years with debt.

Xi Jinping extends greeting for International Labour Day
The protesters also demanded that the government address issues including low wages, unemployment and trade union repression. The following day a protest rally near Chicago's Haymarket Square turned into a riot after someone threw a bomb at police.

Day-1 Box Office: Avengers- Infinity War breaks Bollywood records
About $19.3 million Cdn is projected to come from Canada, making it the biggest opening weekend for a film in the country as well. Other studios cleared their decks in anticipation, so there were no competing major releases this weekend.

'No magic solution' to Rohingya crisis says United Nations team in Bangladesh
Rohingya are denied citizenship in overwhelmingly Buddhist Myanmar , where they've faced persecution for decades. Bangladesh and Myanmar signed an agreement late a year ago to return the Muslim refugees.

U.S. lawmaker Meehan resigns following sexual harassment claim
Meehan, 62, is a married father of three who has represented his southeastern Pennsylvania district since 2011. Arlen Specter and Rick Santorum when he was elected Delaware County District Attorney in 1995.

US Growth Cools to 2.3% While Compensation Costs Accelerate
They expect a bounce back in the coming months, and preliminary estimates point to 3.6% growth in the second quarter. The expected cooling in equipment investment partly reflects a fading boost from a recovery in commodity prices.

Q&A with Roquan Smith, talking big hits, small towns and big fish
But Smith wasn't ready to publicly announced those aspirations when he met the Chicago media Friday at Halas Hall. But he wasn't going to overdo it on his first day as a Bear.

Trump Meets Wounded Soldiers, Pledges Support for Veterans
It's the latest in a series of appointments and nominations that has opponents questioning US President Donald Trump 's judgement. It was a new low in the ongoing effort to undermine each of President Trump's Cabinet nominees by any means necessary.

Baker Mayfield is the NFL Draft's No
Sure enough, that's exactly what hapened and Goldhammer says he'll live up to his promise. Chubb's biggest weakness is in the receiving game.