A Christian baker was within her rights to refuse to make a wedding cake for a same-sex couple, a local judge in California has ruled.
Judge David R Lampe from the Superior Court in Kern County – north of Los Angeles – concluded that forcing Cathy Miller to fulfil the order would have contradicted her right to free speech.
The State of California took legal action against the owner of Tastries bakery in Bakersfield after she declined an order last year by a lesbian couple, Mireya and Eileen Rodriguez-Del Rio.
In a document seen by Onward Christian Radio, Judge Lampe concluded: “No baker may place their wares in a public display case, open their shop, and then refuse to sell because of race, religion, gender, or gender identification.
“The difference here is that the cake in question is not yet baked.”
He went on to say: “The right to freedom of speech under the First Amendment outweighs the State’s interest in ensuring a freely-accessible marketplace.
“The right of freedom of thought guaranteed by the First Amendment includes the right to speak, and the right to refrain from speaking.”
It is unclear whether the Rodriguez-Del Rio family will appeal the decision.
Onward Christian Radio, believes that this case will stock up tension not only in America but on British shores. This is because Franklin Graham a Christian evangelist defended the Christian baker when she was being taken to court because she refused to cater for same-sex weddings.
The evangelist praised the Tastries Baker in Bakersfield, California for standing up for her beliefs, despite the prospect her business could be forced to shut.
Franklin Graham wrote on his Facebook page: “I appreciate the fact that Cathy Miller stood up for her beliefs…
“We need to pray for Cathy and for our religious freedoms to be upheld.
“The courts should never be able to force Christians to go against what the Word of God teaches.”
The 65-year-old accused members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community of trying to force believers to embrace their lifestyles.
He went on to say: “It ain’t gonna happen.
“God calls homosexuality sin – take it up with Him if you don’t like it.”
“As a Christian of course I don’t hate gays, I love them and want them to know the truth.
“If they choose to live that lifestyle, they certainly have the freedom to do so in this country-but don’t tell me what I have to believe or participate in.”
Franklin Graham’s new remarks are likely to add strength to calls among LGBT advocates that he ought to be prevented from attending a rally in Blackpool next year.
A number of Lancashire MPs have expressed concern over the visit, while more than 7,000 people have signed a petition calling upon the Government to refuse him entry to the UK.
A number of MPs have added their voice to the growing concern over an upcoming visit to the UK by US evangelist Franklin Graham.
Over 7,000 people have signed a petition stating he shouldn’t be allowed into the country.
They claim he has homophobic and islamophobic views and is “likely to promote prejudice and hatred”.
The preacher, who’s the son of legendary evangelist Billy Graham, is due to speak at Blackpool’s Festival of Hope at the city’s Winter Gardens in September this year (2018).