In California, a judge ruled in favor of a baker who was sued by the state for refusing to bake a cake for a lesbian couple’s wedding.
The New York Post reports that Cathy Miller, the owner of Tastries Bakery in Bakersfield, was sued by the state’s Department of Fair Housing and Employment after she refused to bake a cake for Eileen and Mireya Rodridguez-Del Rio. The state accused Miller of violating the Unruh Civil Rights Act, a state anti-discrimination law.
After Miller’s attorney argued that she was protected by her First Amendment right to freedom of religion, and that being forced to bake the cake would violate her religious beliefs, Kern County Superior Judge Eric Bradshaw sided with the defendant. In his ruling on Friday, Bradshaw determined that Miller had not committed a crime by turning the couple down, and was well within her rights by upholding her own religious beliefs.
“I’m hoping that in our community we can grow together,” said Miller after the ruling. “And we should understand that we shouldn’t push any agenda against anyone else.”
Meanwhile, the lesbian couple refused to accept the judge’s ruling and vowed to appeal, saying in a statement that they were “disappointed, but not surprised.”
“We anticipate that our appeal will have a different result,” Eileen said in an ominous statement.
Miller’s case had already gone before a Kern County Superior Court, where the court once again ruled in her favor, before the decision was vacated by the 5th District Court of Appeal, thus sending the lawsuit back to the county for Bradshaw’s latest ruling.