As if being fined a whopping $135,000 by the state of Oregon wasn’t bad enough, the couple behind this Oregon bakery was gagged from discussing their beliefs that led them to refuse to make a cake for a same-sex wedding.Yep, this blatant — and multi-faceted — government attack on First Amendment rights can only infuriate you.
However, what the couple — and a growing community of like-minded citizens — did in response will make you cheer.
As Twitchy reports:
As Twitchy recently reported, Sweet Cakes by Melissa, the Oregon bakery that refused to make a cake for a same-sex wedding, was ordered by the commissioner of Oregon’s Bureau of Labor and Industries to pay $135,000 in emotional damages to the lesbian couple it “mentally raped” by refusing to serve them.Unbelievable, right? Even more hard to comprehend was the order that the husband and wife owners cease-and-desist discussing the beliefs that led to their fine.
Did y’all grok that? Yeah, the state of Oregon ordered this couple to stop talking about their religious beliefs. If that’s not a direct violation of the First Amendment, I don’t know what is.
What’s inspiring is that this couple refused to be gagged by the state; to the contrary, they’ve taken their right to free speech to the ethernet and the airwaves.For his part, Aaron Klein showed he’s not kidding about fighting back against the gag order by speaking with Fox News host Todd Starnes.
In fact, the first thing the Kleins did after reading the gag order was to call the press. As Fox News’ Starnes reports:
“I don’t really care,” Mr. Klein told me. “This man has no power over me. He seems to think he can tell me to be quiet. That doesn’t sit well with me – and I refuse to comply.”
The Kleins tell me they have been ordered not to speak to any news organizations or speak publicly – an order they violated when they called me.
“They picked the wrong guy,” Mr. Klein said. “When my constitutional freedoms have been violated by the state, I’m going to speak out. That’s the way it is.”
Mrs. Klein told me she was shocked that the state of Oregon thinks they have the power to silence her voice.
“For us to not be able to speak about it – that’s our freedom of speech,” she said. “All Americans should be free to live and work by their faith and speak their mind.”
Inspiring to see this Oregon couple and small business owner stand up to such overt government bullying, even as their very livelihood — and financial solvency — is under attack.
And the news just gets better for those of us who still would take up arms to protect our First Amendment rights. A fundraising page set up to help the Kleins pay the $135,000 fine imposed on them by the state of Oregon now has raised more than $200,000.
We can only hope that as the heavy hand of government continues to clamp down on First Amendment rights, more and more brave citizens like the Kleins will stand up and fight back. Enough is enough.