An important victory for freedom of speech


The Christian owners of a bakery have won an appeal at the UK’s highest court over a finding that they discriminated against a customer by refusing to make a cake decorated with the words “Support Gay Marriage”. Five Supreme Court justices allowed a challenge by the McArthur family in a unanimous ruling in London on Wednesday in what has become widely known as the “gay cake case”. The legal action was originally brought against family-run Ashers bakery in Belfast by gay rights activist Gareth Lee, who won his case initially in the county court and then at the Northern Ireland Court of Appeal.

Outside court, Ashers general manager Daniel McArthur said: “I want to start by thanking God. He has been with us during the challenges of the last four years. Through the Bible and the support of Christians, He has comforted us and sustained us. He is our rock and all His ways are just. “We’re delighted and relieved at today’s ruling. We always knew we hadn’t done anything wrong in turning down this order. After more than four years, the Supreme Court has now recognised that and we’re very grateful. Grateful to the judges and especially grateful to God. “We’re particularly pleased the Supreme Court emphatically accepted what we’ve said all along – we did not turn down this order because of the person who made it, but because of the message itself. “The judges have given a clear signal today. In fact it couldn’t be any clearer. Family businesses like ours are free to focus on giving all their customers the best service they can – without being forced to promote other people’s campaigns. “I know a lot of people will be glad to hear this ruling today, because this ruling protects freedom of speech and freedom of conscience for everyone. “On behalf of my family can I say thank you to everyone who has supported us or prayed for us through all this. “We want to move on from this now, and I’m sure Mr Lee does as well. And let me finish by saying that he will always be welcome at any of our shops.” (Telegraph 10/10/18)

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