This was an interesting story. Not only can we be sued for the things we have done, now we can be sued for refusing to do something. Where does it end? Moreover, what are the implications for the UK? This soon could be the case…
Read the whole story below.
US photographer sued for not
covering lesbian ceremony
A Christian photographer who refused to take photographs of a ‘commitment
ceremony’ between two women is being sued in the United States under
laws similar to the UK’s sexual orientation regulations on goods and
Attorneys from the Alliance Defense Fund, a Christian legal organisation in America, are representing the
photographer who is being sued in the state of New Mexico.
The ADF says: “The constitutional right of Americans to refrain from
participating in a ceremony or other event because their sincerely held
religious beliefs conflict with its message is at stake.”
If the prosecution is successful, “…Christians could be forced to
advocate for viewpoints with which they disagree or to participate in
events that violate their conscience.”
When the sexual orientation regulations were introduced in the UK, The Christian
Institute warned that the religious liberty of Christian professionals
was at risk. The Institute gave a number of scenarios, including a
Christian photographer declining to cover a civil partnership ceremony.
In 2007, after a judicial review of the regulations in Northern Ireland, a
High Court judgment said county courts should consider the principles
of a Canadian case where it was decided that a Christian printer should
not be forced to print something that goes against his or her core
Senior Counsel Jordan Lorence of the ADF says: “Christians shouldn’t be penalized for abiding by their
beliefs. The state cannot force unwilling people to promote a message
they disagree with and thereby violate their conscience.
“The state’s prosecution violates our client’s First Amendment rights
[freedom of religion and freedom of expression]. The government cannot
make people choose between their faith and their job.”
The hearing will take place on 28 and 29 January 2008.