A Kentucky-based Christian business does not have to make T-shirts for a gay pride event, declared a three judge panel of the state’s court of appeals.
A three judge panel of the Kentucky Court of Appeals ruled 2-1 on Friday that Hands On Originals could not be forced to make T-shirts for an event its owner was morally opposed to on religious grounds.
The panel upheld an earlier decision from the Fayette Circuit Court in favor of HOO and against an LGBT group and the Lexington Fayette Urban County Human Rights Commission.
“Nothing in the fairness ordinance prohibits HOO, a private business, from engaging in viewpoint or message censorship,” read the panel’s decision.
“Thus, although the menu of services HOO provides to the public is accordingly limited, and censors certain points of view, it is the same limited menu HOO offers to every customer and is not, therefore, prohibited by the fairness ordinance.”
In his dissent, Judge Jeff Taylor concluded that HOO had indeed violated the local ordinance and thus engaged in unlawful discrimination against homosexuals by refusing to print the shirts.
“The facts in this case clearly establish that HOO’s conduct, the refusal to print the t-shirts, was based upon gays and lesbians promoting a gay pride festival in Lexington, which violated the Fairness Ordinance,” argued Taylor.
“Finally, it is important to note that the speech that HOO sought to censor was not obscene or defamatory. There was nothing obnoxious, inflammatory, false, or even pornographic that GLSO wanted to place on their t-shirts which would justify restricting their speech under the First Amendment.”
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SOURCE: The Christian Post