At the heart of the recent Supreme Court’s decision in Ashers Baking lies the ruling that nobody should be forced to express a view in which they do not believe. The unfortunate implications of this content-neutral reasoning go far beyond the circumstances of this case. This reasoning will result in vindicating behaviours that are founded on anti-liberal values, thus undermining core liberal values.
If courts follow this reasoning they will have to rule that a bakery, for example, does not have to provide customers cakes with icing that says either ‘homosexuality is a sin’ or ‘support gay marriage’ if these views run against the deeply held belief of the bakery’s owners.
In many aspects, the statement ‘homosexuality is a sin’ is not different from ‘support gay marriage’. Both statements are legal; both contradict deeply held beliefs of others; and both reflect deeply held beliefs – religious or others. And yet…
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