On Monday, September 16, 2019, the Arizona Supreme Court ruled against a Phoenix city ordinance that would have forced two Christian business owners to produce custom wedding invitations for a homosexual couple.
According to The Hill, a legal battle started in 2016 when Joanna Duka and Breanna Koski, owners of Brush & Nib Studio, sued the city of Phoenix, arguing that the city's Human Relations Ordinance violated their First Amendment rights to freedom of speech and religion. Specifically, the city law threatened them with up to six months in jail, $2,500 in fines, and three years of probation if they refused to make customized LGBTQ-themed wedding invitations.
The two women, who design handmade artwork for weddings and other events, reportedly hold the belief that a marriage should be between a man and a woman and that creating invitations for LGBTQ couples would be akin to endorsing the marriage.
The women were represented in court by Alliance Defending Freedom, the same group that recently represented a Colorado baker who refused to make a wedding cake for an LGBTQ couple.
The Arizona Supreme Court's 4-3 decision overturned multiple lower court decisions that ruled in favor of the LGBTQ community, saying, "The enduring strength of the First Amendment is that it allows people to speak their minds and express their beliefs without government interference. But here, the City effectively cuts off Plaintiffs' right to express their beliefs about same-sex marriage by telling them what they can and cannot say."
Slowly, but surely, the LGBTQ community and its government bullying partners are learning that Christian business owners do not have to relinquish their religious beliefs when they choose to do business with the general public.
AFA applauds Joanna and Breanna for their faithfulness to the word of God and their stand against hateful attacks from the LGBTQ community. We are also thankful for the work of Alliance Defending Freedom in protecting Christian business owners.