The U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear the appeal of Elaine and Jonathan Huguenin, a New Mexico photographer sued by a lesbian couple after Elaine refused to take pictures at their commitment ceremony in 2006 because of her religious convictions.
The lesbians found another photographer at a cheaper price, but still filed a discrimination grievance against Elaine Photography with the New Mexico Human Rights Commission. At the time, New Mexico law did not recognize same-sex “marriage” or civil unions. Apparently, the lesbian petitioners wanted to push the New Mexico courts and also the legislature to take a stand on the issue.
For their part, Huguenins have been consistent and have declined other photography jobs that could not be reconciled with their religious beliefs, including nude shoots and gory shots to promote a horror movie.
The New Mexico Human Rights Commission ordered them to pay $7,000 to the lesbians. “The Huguenins appealed the case to the New Mexico Supreme Court, which upheld the ruling in August 2013. In his concurring decision, Judge Richard C. Bosson acknowledged that the Christian photographers were being ‘compelled by law to compromise the very religious beliefs that inspire their lives,’ but said that this compromise is ‘part of the glue that holds us together as a nation’ and is ‘the price of citizenship.’
The judge ruled that it was illegal for a photography business owned by a Christian to refuse to photograph a same-sex ceremony.
Subsequently, they lost at every level right up to the Supreme Court.
“Only unjust laws separate what people say from what they believe,” said Jordan Lorence, the attorney that defended the Huguenin’s. The courts have mostly supported homosexuals in their lawsuits against those businesses that refuse to accept clients from same-sex couples because of their religious convictions. The courts should respect religious convictions even if society is more tolerant of homosexuals, said Lorence “What I hope we all… agree on is that people should not be censored or punished or held up to public humiliation for having a view that is not supported by this new ascending orthodoxy.”
“The Mozilla CEO case is another example of [the new orthodoxy],” said Lorence, “even though it wasn’t (a legal case). We see increasing effort to hound people out of public life and put them into exile on the outskirts of society.”
“The First Amendment protects our freedom to speak or not speak on any issue without fear of punishment,” Lorence added.
“Religious freedom advocates have voiced concern over what they see as growing hostility toward anyone who defends marriage as the union of a man and a woman. Numerous lawsuits are currently underway challenging the right of individuals to express their religious beliefs through their business decisions.”
A government that forces anyone to send a message contrary to their own convictions is a government every American should fear. When the government tramples on fundamental rights like freedom of speech and the free exercise of religion, the nation will soon force people to act against their conscience in other areas as well.
The price of citizenship should not require the surrender of conscience. Nor should it require those with conscience to live in fear of reprisals or humiliation.
But that is not the way the homosexual movement is headed. Remember that ALL the men of the city, not just some of them, gathered around Lots’ house (See Genesis 19:4) demanding that he turn the two angels over to them. They were aggressive and didn’t like it when Lot accused them of being wicked.
The Supreme Court missed an opportunity to reaffirm a basis tenant of religious freedom and the first amendment. But it happens that at least a majority of the court does not believe that the U.S. Constitution is relevant or is necessary to uphold. The Vatican doesn’t like the U.S. Constitution either. Not hearing this case would suit Rome just fine.
“As it was in the days of Lot…” Luke 17:28