I thought that this recent article from The Federalist was worth reading so that everyone can understand how the tolerance crowd really deals with respectful disagreement.
The employees tasked with handling the front of the shop are busy tending to consumers, so owner Jack Phillips, the kind of guy who’s more comfortable dealing with sugar paste than strangers, jumps in to help out.
We’d like you to design a cake for our wedding, the man explains, motioning to his partner at the other side of the shop.
Sorry, Phillips responds, I can’t create specialty cakes for gay weddings. If you’d like, I can sell you anything else you want — cupcakes, pastries, whatever.
Anger flushes over the would-be customer, who stands up, curses, and flips off Phillips while he heads for the door — a reaction that is well within the normal bounds of serious disagreements in American life.
Oh, but the two men could not handle disagreement like you or I could:
A half hour after Mullins and Craig storm out of Masterpiece Cakeshop, the store’s phone rings. An irate caller asked Jack if he’s the jerk who turned away the gay couple. Well, no, I just don’t design cakes for same-sex weddings; I didn’t turn away anyone, he explains.
This distinction fails to pacify the agitated man, and after offering an array of colorful suggestions, he hangs up. In the hour between the incident and closing time that Thursday night, Phillips estimates he received another six comparably incensed calls berating him for cake-denying bigotry. When he finally got home, his inbox is fuller than it’s ever been. And it’s not because locals have a sudden hankering for Funshine Cookie Pops.
[…]Jack begins his demanding work at 6 a.m. the next morning, so he can prepare for a Bible study class he hosts on Fridays. The phone is already ringing. It rings all day. All day Saturday (probably all day Sunday) and all day Monday, as well. Angry voices, swearing at him; demanding cakes; threatening him. Jack stops answering.
Then the protestors show up.
One of the disadvantages of showing off your righteous passion in a suburban parking lot in Lakewood, Colorado is that very few people can see or hear you. So the activists picketing Masterpiece that weekend were forced to pick up their rainbow flags and move to a busy intersection on nearby Wadsworth Ave — right across the street from another bakery. Actually, within the five square miles radius of Masterpiece there are a dozen places that could have accommodated the jilted couple.
Then again, this has nothing to do with a cake.
No, they didn’t want a cake, they wanted to stamp out anyone who disagreed with their lifestyle – stop them from earning a living so that they would starve. Or maybe put them in prison. And to the people on the secular left, this rage made sense. It was normal. It was justified. They didn’t protest the murder of gay people in Muslim countries, they protested being told no by a Christian man whose first priority was to keep his conscience clean according to his moral convictions.
On Monday, the TV stations showed up. By Tuesday, Jack was on local news.
[…]The first letter from the Colorado Civil Rights Commission arrived soon enough. Americans, evidently, no longer share a “common” sense about societal norms. So Mullins and Craig had lawyered up immediately — contacting the ACLU, once champions of free expression and now champions of hurt feelings.
[…]The commission was not above retroactive punishment, however. At the time, being found guilty of violating civil rights laws didn’t only mean the end of Phillips’ life’s work. The punishment for refusing to make a special cake for a gay wedding was $500 and one year in prison per charge (jail time was only later amended out of the law when general public learned about the statue).
The shop was not only ordered to alter its policy and start participating in gay weddings or else face debilitating fines, it was told to provide comprehensive staff training, ensure compliance, then file quarterly obedience reports with the government for two full years. In these reports, Phillips was to describe exactly which remedial measures the shop had taken to conform, and document the reasons any other patrons were denied service.
Colorado’s Thought Police would teach Phillips how to stop himself acting on any ideas that were heretical.
The commission could only pass quasi-criminal judgments. In the end, these charges had to be authorized by the attorney general, who was charged with executing complaints and filing formal proceedings. In this case, that person was John Suthers, a Republican. He did.
The case is now headed to the Supreme Court. The article notes that complaints filed with the Colorado Civil Rights Commission by Christians who were denied cakes by non-Christian bakers were dismissed – because the laws are only enforced against Christians. It’s very much like 1930s Nazi Germany, in that regard, with the secular leftists in place of the Nazis, of course.
Well, I would never respond like that to people who disagreed with my sexual orientation. My sexual orientation is chastity – no sex before marriage for any reason. I would not even kiss a girl on the lips before marriage. How would I handle someone who refused to sell me a cake? I would thank them, and find another cake. That’s what grown-ups who have self-control do when confronted with people who disagree with them. It’s called “celebrating diversity”. It’s called “tolerance”.
I don’t need pride parades or government coercing those who disagree with me. Chastity is self-evidently virtuous, because it puts self-sacrificial commitment above recreational sex. But some people are not so sure that what they are doing is morally right, and that’s why they want to involve the government to force people to celebrate them. They think that maybe if everyone agrees with them, then the majority of sinful humans can somehow overturn the moral law. Or at least make rebellion more comfortable for now. In my case, the honor of what I am doing with my sexuality is internal and self-attesting, even if the culture is against it.