Touché, supporters of basic human decency.
As we previously reported, on Wednesday the UK Supreme Court ruled in favor of Ashers Baking Company in Northern Ireland. The establishment refused to bake a cake featuring fictional characters Bert and Ernie with the message “support gay marriage.” The court ruled that this wasn’t discrimination, that the bakery had a right to “freedom of thought, conscience and religion.”
That’s infuriating, sure. But that’s not where the story ends.
Anti-LGBTQ+ group The Christian Institute covered the bakery’s legal fees, and shortly thereafter found the tables had turned. Perfocal, a photography company they hired to cover the hearing and press statement, ultimately denied them the service, refunding their money and withholding the photos.
Perfocal founder Tony Xu told Pink News:
“When our photographer on the ground learned what it was while doing the job, they felt immediately uncomfortable with the situation, as many members of the public are, but remained professional. As soon as I found out though, I realized this was an opportunity to highlight exactly why this kind of result is damaging. This isn’t just about standing up against discrimination. I hope our stance serves as an example of exactly where this kind of judgment could lead us. Where does it end?”
“It’s been accepted in the highest court in the UK that private companies can accept bookings and then, if they feel that it goes against their morals, refuse that booking if it offends their sensibilities and it not be counted as discriminatory… We had no idea what the case was when the booking was made—we simply see the basic information, date, time, location.”
“We appreciate that this looks like tit for tat, and it is.”
How do we feel about this? Is Perfocal’s tit-for-tat helping? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.