Letters to the Editor

Letter: Discrimination

Mr. and Mrs. Klein, owners of Sweet Cakes by Melissa, were not “persecuted and fined for their beliefs.” Sweet Cakes is a “place of public accommodation.” Under the Oregon Equality Act (OEA), all individuals are “entitled to the full and equal accommodations ... of any place of public accommodation, without any distinction, discrimination or restriction on account of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, marital status or age.”

The OEA treats race-based and sexual orientation-based discrimination with equal abhorrence; neither is more “acceptable” than the other. I propose a question to those who believe that Sweet Cakes was unfairly penalized, notwithstanding the OEA. Would your views change if Sweet Cakes religiously objected to miscegenation? Before overturning an anti-miscegenation law, Loving v. Virginia quoted Judge Bazile, who said, “Almighty God created the races ... and he placed them on separate continents ... The fact that he separated the races shows that he did not intend for the races to mix.”

If Bazile was a baker, would his sincere religious beliefs justify refusal to accommodate interracial marriage? Of course not. The Sweet Cakes situation is analogous and equally repugnant to social justice.

Rance Shaw, Boise

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