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Should religious bakers be forced to bake cakes for gay weddings?

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Time Remaining
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 8/6/2016 Category: Society
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 1,466 times Debate No: 94485
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (34)
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Hey everybody, I made this debate because I have many opinions regarding politics, social issues, and even a little bit of economics, but I have a hard time expressing them with people I know. So, I just thought it'd be great to share my views anonymously, and even get challenged on them, forcing me to really think. And yes, I know this is a rather old topic, but I still want to talk about it and debate on it.

Well, before we get started, I just wanted to say that I completely support the right of two members of the same sex to get married and raise children (although I do think that government should stay out of marriage, but that's a different subject). I have a gay uncle who was married very recently and is happier than ever. I used to have gay neighbors who have kids, and every year they invite me and my family to come to their kid's birthday parties, and every year, we go and I am always happy to see them. I even have some LGBT friends. Heck, my dog's veterinarian is lesbian, and my brother is friends with one of her and her wife's two daughters. And, like I said before, I completely support same-sex marriage and would attend any gay wedding that I was invited to.

That said, I do think that religious freedom is being threatened by the government and that the government should allow religious bakers to refuse baking cakes for gay weddings. In the Bill of Rights in the Constitution of the United States of America, the First Amendment says, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof," and it then goes on talk about freedom of speech and of the press, and so on. This part clearly says that the federal government cannot put in place any religious or anti-religious laws (the separation of church and state, something I completely agree with), so it's up to state governments to decide what to do about religion. Well, it looks like religion isn't exactly doing so well:

Now, there is an argument saying that refusing to provide service for gay weddings is homophobic; however, it is in fact very logical and supports freedom of religion, which is an essential right of each and every person in America. And the thing is, the same reasoning behind allowing religious people to refuse service to gay weddings can be applied to other business owners and their right to refuse service, as well. Take these examples;

If you're a Christian baker, and a gay person walks in through your door and asks for a cake that says "Happy Birthday," you cannot refuse service to him because he's gay or you don't agree with homosexuality. That's blatant discrimination and it's highly illegal. However, if that same gay person walks in through your door and asks for a cake that says "Congratulations Harry and Sam, Same Sex Marriage is Legal Now," you have the right to refuse service to him because making a gay wedding cake is an activity you don't support and don't want to participate in.

Likewise, if you're a gay baker, and Shirley Phelps (one of the most prominent members of the Westboro Baptist Church) walks in through your door and asks for a cake that says "Happy Birthday," you cannot refuse service to her because she's part of the Westboro Baptist Church or you don't like her. That's blatant discrimination and it's highly illegal. However, if Shirley Phelps walks in through your door and asks for a cake that says "God Hates F**s, Thank God for Dead Soldiers," you have the right to refuse service to her because making a WBC cake is an activity you don't support or want to participate in.

Steven Crowder goes through this and puts in a Kanye West metaphor and also puts in some hidden-camera antics:

So, to wrap this all up, no baker, whether they be Christian, Muslim, Jewish, or other should be forced to bake cakes for gay weddings, and other business owners also have a right to not participate in activities they disagree with. And if you still think I'm being homophobic, not all gay people agree with government force:

I would like to give my thanks to whoever accepts this challenge, and I hope that we can have a logical, mature discussion about this topic. May the best debater win!


My thanks to the opposition for this debate. I would like to divide my argument into three sections. The first being religious, second being business and third being homophobia. But first some rebuttal (based on your messages in the comments).
You stated that a gay person refusing a black person a cake celebrating the killing of cops is not racist, it is not the black they have a problem with it is cop genocide. Therefore it is not homophobic to not bake a cake for a gay wedding. There are two problems with that, first killing cops is not a black thing, white people can do it, but gay weddings are a gay thing, so discriminating against cop killings is fine but discriminating against gay marriages is discriminating against gay people.

First and foremost, the cake you are baking for a gay couple is in no way inherently religious. The cake you bake for that gay couple is just a cake and not a religious icon, you do not need to in any way insert your religion into it.

When you run a bakery what is your job? To bake. That job is not at all based on sexuality, gender, race, so you should not take it into account when doing it.

The concept of homophobia is a fear of gay people. Now it is a safe assumption that most Christians have a fear of going to hell. Isiah 59:2 states that sin takes you away from God, hence away from heaven, and towards hell. Therefore serving a gay person a cake would be a sin and therefore taking you away from God, toward hell and that is a fear of Christians.
Debate Round No. 1


First off, I just want to thank Morallypolitical for accepting the debate. I was really hoping to debate this topic with someone, so thank you again to the contender. I would also like to make a disclaimer; personally I don't believe that any God exists, so I am speaking from an atheist standpoint.

So, as you can see, the opponent has made three different points in response to what my beginning argument said, as well as some of the discussions I had in the comments section. I'm going to rebut those three points to further prove that religious bakers have the right to refuse service for gay weddings.

Morallypolitical has discussed one of my arguments in the comment section, which was basically; if a religious baker refusing to bake a wedding cake is homophobic, is a gay baker refusing to bake a cop-killing cake for a black person racist? Now, another user (I believe his or her username is Willow) also addressed this argument and took the same approach that the opponent did. Obviously, I didn't really make my comment clear, because by only looking at that one comment, then of course the problem is not with black people; it's with cop-killing. However, in the next comment, I made sure to say that what I was trying to get across was that the customer was a radical Black Lives Matter activist, a New Black Panther, or just an all-around racist. I also said that what his cake would have said is "Kill All Cops, The Black Race is Supreme." So now that my argument is clearer, and we don't have to get into semantics, the gay baker is refusing to bake a black supremacist cake; is that racist because the other person is black? And please don't give me the argument that I'm comparing gay weddings to cop-killing in the name of race, because using that same logic, I'm comparing religious bakers to gay bakers.

Now, to rebut the opponent's main points. The first point that he or she made is that baking wedding cakes is not religious at all, and that religion shouldn't be involved at all when baking wedding cakes. I ask the opponent to read these following passages from the Bible, the Qu'ran, and the Torah:

Mark 10: 6-8
6 "But at the beginning of creation God 'made them male and female.' 7 'For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united with his wife, 8 and the two will become one flesh.' So they are not two, but one flesh."

Surah 30, Verse 21
"And one of His signs is that He has created for you, spouses from amongst yourselves so that you might take comfort in them and He has placed between you, love and mercy. In this there is surely evidence for the people who carefully think."

Proverbs 18:22
"He who finds a wife has found good, and earns the favor of G-d."

So, what can be derived from these three passages of different holy books is that, collectively, A) when a (traditional) couple is married, they stop becoming two individuals and become unified and together, B) the marriage of a (traditional) couple is an act of God and is therefore righteous, and C) (traditional) marriage earns God's favor, and therefore God views them in a better light and they are more likely to go to heaven once they pass away. So obviously, marriage plays a big role in religion and is extremely sacred, so baking wedding cakes is supporting a very crucial part in God's plan. Therefore, baking a wedding cake for a gay couple is supporting an institution that is being warped into what can be seen as a sinful manner and goes against God's plan.

The next point the opponent makes can be rebutted in a much simpler fashion. As proven before, refusing to bake a gay wedding cake is not discriminatory and can be applied in other situations as well (either look at the Westboro Baptist Church example I gave, or look at the link to the Steven Crowder video, both of which can be found in my first argument). You can't refuse service because you don't like the person because that is practically the definition of discrimination, but you can refuse service because you don't want to participate in or support various activities. Like I said, for more information, look at my first argument or check in the comments section.

Finally, the last point the opponent presented was that homophobia is a fear of gay people, and since religious people fear going to hell and homosexuality is considered a sin, which means that refusing to bake gay wedding cakes is homophobic. The same logic I used in the argument above is the same logic for this; you can't refuse service to a gay person on accounts of them being gay, because that is truly homophobic. However, refusing to bake a gay wedding cake is not homophobic because the baker doesn't want to support that activity. Gays don't have to bake Westboro Baptist Church cakes. Jews don't have to bake Nazi cakes. Blacks don't have to bake KKK cakes. What part about the right to refuse service does the opponent not understand?

Well, that concludes my second argument. It's been fun debating this topic so far, and I can't wait to see the rebuttal!
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Debate Round No. 2
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Debate Round No. 3
34 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by ThisIsMyUsername333 1 year ago
For anybody who comes across this now rather-old debate, in my first argument, I said that the government should stay out of marriage, but I'm thinking a lot about these kinds of things now and I'm a bit conflicted, so I'm not sure about that. If you want to give me your argument about the government and marriage, feel free to post on my profile. I'm open for comments.
Posted by ThisIsMyUsername333 2 years ago
Aw man...
Posted by ThisIsMyUsername333 2 years ago
4 minutes, please don't forfeit!!!
Posted by ThisIsMyUsername333 2 years ago
Two hours, Morallypolitical. Please post your rebuttal.
Posted by ThisIsMyUsername333 2 years ago
Morallypolitical, please post a rebuttal as soon as you can. I'm getting nervous now.
Posted by ThisIsMyUsername333 2 years ago
To Morallypolitical,

Could you please post an argument as soon as you can? I know that you're allowed to take your time, but there's only a few hours left. I'd be incredibly thankful if you did.
Posted by ThisIsMyUsername333 2 years ago
I would ask of my opponent to please just hurry up a little. There's not much time left, and I really want to continue debating this topic.
Posted by ThisIsMyUsername333 2 years ago
Again, the same reasoning I've been repeating over and over applies to this; no matter what, if the customer is a sinner of any kind, you can't refuse service to them. This is because they are (presumably) not doing anything to support sin. However, if they want a cake dedicated so supporting sin (gay weddings), the baker has the right to refuse service. This logic can be applied to other situations as well (such as the Westboro Baptist Church example I gave, or you can learn more in the link to the video).
Posted by kjt258 2 years ago
I think the best response to people crying for "religious freedom" is to point out that to God, all sins are equal. The Bible statement "For the wages of sin is death..." (Romans 6:23) applies to all sins. Everybody who sins and who does not repent and accept Jesus Christ into their lives goes to hell, regardless if they disobeyed their parents or if they engaged in homosexual sex, according to the Bible. Even if we were to rate sins, would not every sin in the ten commandments be worse than the sin of homosexuality? Are these cake bakers going to ask every client if they're a liar, a glutton, or if they disobey their parents? If you're going to deny a person because of one sin, why not make sure your clients are completely sin free? After all, a liar and a homosexual are going to hell just the same, according to the Bible.
Posted by ThisIsMyUsername333 2 years ago
Sorry, I typed religion instead of sexuality in that first sentence.
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