There’s a really important piece posted right now at the Daily Signal, written by the Alliance Defending Freedom’s Marissa Mayer. If you have ever had questions why some people believe that bakers should be allowed to refuse to bake a custom cake for a gay wedding, you need to read this piece. That is, if you are truly interested in understanding. There are, admittedly, a great number of people who actually do understand the argument, but pretend to be flummoxed at the mere concept simply for effect.
Mayer actually begins by discussing how she herself was recently denied service. Being a writer, she was interested in learning how to better connect with donors to help fund her work. To that end, she signed up for a custom online course from the organization Moceanic that trains writers how to do just that. After paying and receiving login information for her course, everything changed.
[L]ast weekend I received an email notifying me that they had refunded the cost of the course with no explanation as to why. I was a little perplexed by the email and when I logged into their website on Monday morning, the course was no longer available to me.
That’s when I starting digging deeper into the brains behind Moceanic, and it didn’t take long for me to discover the values statement on their website. Here are a few key excerpts:
*We work with progressive charities and movements. … This includes LBGT+ rights, Planned Parenthood, ACLU… . We won’t work with organizations that oppose these movements.
This is important to us, and we reserve the right to choose not to train people working directly for, or on behalf of, organizations whose missions or values do not align with ours.*
Moceanic actually went a step further. Not only did they refuse Marissa access to their customized training, they also refused to sell even pre-existing, non-customized classes.
Surely we can all understand Moceanic’s perspective. They have values, beliefs, and a collective conscience about right and wrong. Why in the world would they want to train and teach someone to raise money against what they value, believe, and hold as right?
Are they discriminating? Of course they are. Is it wrong? Not at all. And that, by the way, is exactly what Marissa Mayer said:
Of course, Moceanic shouldn’t be forced to coach me on how to speak in a way that generates excitement and engagement for a cause that they disagree with any more than [Christian baker] Jack [Phillips] should have to create a cake celebrating a marriage that conflicts with his beliefs.
But they also want to decline me pre-existing courses lacking any custom designed coaching or content.
Although Moceanic’s actions go further than protecting against compelled speech, I understand why they wouldn’t want to advance the mission of their opposition. We live in a diverse nation where people hold differing views about a lot of different things.
The freedom to disagree is what makes America so unique. If we’re all forced by the government to adhere to the same ideology, then we are no longer the land of the free.
That’s the point. I don’t think it's anywhere close to fair to say that the executives at Moceanic hate Marissa Mayer. They just fundamentally disagree with her and don’t want to use their talents to help her promote something they’re at odds with. In the same way, it isn’t that Christian bakers hate gay couples. Unlike Moceanic, they will still happily serve gay couples, but they simply don’t want to use their talents to specifically promote something they believe dishonors God.
If you pretend not to understand or if you refuse to accept that, you’re the one with the bigotry problem.