The U.S. Supreme Court is being asked to take up the highly publicized case of Barronelle Stutzman, a Christian florist who declined to participate in a same-sex "wedding."
Stutzman (pictured) cited her views on traditional marriage as the reason she could not fulfill a request from her longtime customer, Rob Ingersoll. The State of Washington said that's against the law – and the Washington Supreme Court agreed. Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), the religious liberty law firm representing Stutzman, is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to say otherwise.
"Barronelle Stutzman received significant support from religious organizations, members of Congress, 17 different states who are all supporting her in her effort to go back to the U.S. Supreme Court and ultimately to get justice in her case," says ADF attorney Jim Campbell.
Campbell explains that the freedom of speech and the expressive freedom ADF is arguing for in this case are for everyone.
"It is for people of faith, but it is also for people who do not have religious beliefs," he continues. "So, for example, the freedom we're arguing for would ensure just as much as it would protect Barronelle from being forced to celebrate a marriage that would violate her religious beliefs, it would also protect somebody who identifies as a lesbian and is a floral artist and doesn't want to make arrangements to celebrate a view of marriage that perhaps opposes same-sex marriage."
Stutzman's shop is still in operation. However, she is being sued not just in her business capacity, but in her personal capacity as well.
"So, if she loses this case, she could ultimately be on the hook to pay the other side's attorneys fees, which would force her into a very realistic risk of bankruptcy," the attorney says.