BLOGBREAKING: Barronelle Heads to the Washington Supreme Court

By Katie Heller Posted on: | March 03, 2016

On Wednesday, the Washington Supreme Court agreed to hear the case of Barronelle Stutzman. Barronelle is a local floral artist, who was sued by both the American Civil Liberties Union and the state attorney general when she declined, due to her religious beliefs, to use her artistic abilities to design custom floral arrangements for a long-time friend’s same-sex ceremony.

Barronelle’s case has far-reaching effects beyond just Christian business owners who wish to operate their businesses consistent with their faith. If the state supreme court upholds the lower court’s ruling forcing Barronelle to violate her conscience and takes away her right to free speech, then the free speech and the conscience rights of all people in the State of Washington who wish to operate their business according to their personally held beliefs will be subject to government veto.

As the ADF reply brief points out:

“The trial court’s and [the state’s and the ACLU’s] view—that there can never be a free speech exception to public accommodation laws—endangers everyone. If correct, then the consciences of all citizens are fair game for the government. No longer could a gay print shop owner decline to print shirts adorned with messages promoting marriage between one man and one woman for a religious rally. Nor could an atheist painter decline to paint a mural celebrating the resurrection of Christ for a church. Indeed, no speaker could exercise esthetic or moral judgments about what projects to take on where a customer claims the decision infringes on his or her rights under the WLAD [Washington Law Against Discrimination].”

Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) Senior Counsel Kristen Waggoner said, “Barronelle and many others like her around the country have been willing to serve any and all customers, but they are understandably not willing to promote any and all messages. We hope the Washington Supreme Court will affirm the broad protections that both the U.S. Constitution and the Washington Constitution afford to freedom of speech and conscience.” 

Join us in prayer for Barronelle and her legal team as she continues to take a courageous stand for her right to freely live out her faith.

Katie Heller

Web Writer

Katie Heller is a native of Atlanta who found her way to the deserts of Arizona after graduating from Franciscan University of Steubenville with a B.A. in Theology and Catechetics.

More from ADF View All

Giving Thanks for Our Clients

Religious Freedom

Giving Thanks for Our Clients

It’s important that we take time to think about all of our clients and thank ...

Mr. Funny | Words | Author | I'm the icon | www | 11/22/2017 16:00:00 Read More

How the Determination of This Pro-Life Student Made a Difference at Queens College

Religious Freedom

How the Determination of This Pro-Life Student Made a Difference at Queens College

Queens College student groups no longer have to worry about going through the...

Mr. Funny | Words | Author | I'm the icon | www | 11/17/2017 21:30:00 Read More

3 Reasons Pittsburgh’s “Censorship Zones” Should Be Struck Down

Adf Blog

3 Reasons Pittsburgh’s “Censorship Zones” Should Be Struck Down

Last week, a federal district court once again upheld Pittsburgh’s censorship...

Mr. Funny | Words | Author | I'm the icon | www | 11/21/2017 18:45:00 Read More

Of Babies and Birth Certificates

Culture

Of Babies and Birth Certificates

The natural family has an objective structure that is based on the truth ever...

Mr. Funny | Words | Author | I'm the icon | www | 11/01/2017 22:00:00 Read More