Iowa Baker Refuses To Bake Lesbian Couple's Wedding Cake
Victoria Childress, who runs Victoria's Cake Cottage out of her home in Des Moines, says it was her right to refuse service to Trina Vodraska and Janelle Sievers, who are planning a June wedding.
"They came in and she introduced herself and I said, 'Is this your sister?' [And she said,] 'No this is my partner,'" Childress said.
"I said, 'I'll tell you I'm a Christian, and I do have convictions.' And I said, 'I'm sorry to tell you, but I'm not going to be able to do the cake because of my convictions for their lifestyle. It is my right, and it's not to discriminated against them. It's not so much to do with them, it's to do with me and my walk with God and what I will answer [to] Him for."
While Childress said she did not belittle the couple, Vodraska and Sievers said they were left feeling humiliated by the experience.
"It was degrading," Vodraska said. "It was like she chastised us for wanting to do business with her."
The couple didn't want to appear on camera in interviews with local news stations, but they did issue a statement, which said in part:
"Awareness of equality was our only goal in bringing this to light, it is not about cake or someone's right to refuse service to a customer. We are grateful for the outpouring of support we have received and hope that by stepping forward we have prevented someone else from experiencing the same type of bigotry."
Other bakeries in the area have come to the couple's defense. Several of those bakers also identify as Christian.
"It is a business," Amanda Laurich, owner of Des Moines' Three Chicks Bakery, told KCCI.com. "It's about the people. It's about making the people happy too."
Another local baker, Cynthia Hendrickson, said, "As Christians, we are supposed to be unselfish, and do things for the greatest good of mankind, and not pass judgment."
Laurich also said that there ought to be a fine line between work and religion.
"I respect her convictions, but I wouldn't be truthful if I said I wasn't doing this to make money too," she said.
Reach reporter Allegra Tepper here.
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