Tuesday, May 5, 2015

A strange omission

from Bake Me a Cake—or Else by Mark Hemingway. Hemingway describes a fairly horrific abuse of the law on the part of Social Justice Warriors, in this case in their pursuit of a baker not wanting to bake a cake for an LGBT wedding.
You might think that once Sweet Cakes By Melissa had been driven out of business, the good citizens offended by the Kleins’ beliefs would have called it a day. But the totalitarianism of America’s liberal culture warriors is a thing to behold.

On April 24, 2015, more than a year and a half after the bakery was shuttered, Alan McCullough, an administrative law judge for Oregon’s Bureau of Labor and Industries, ordered the Kleins to pay $135,000 in fines for violating the state’s public accommodation laws. It is impossible to see this award as anything but excessively punitive. A few years back, a New Mexico wedding photographer was penalized by that state for refusing to work at a same-sex commitment ceremony. The fine in that case was $6,637.
When fellow citizens sought to mitigate the abuse, the SJWs continued their persecution.
The Kleins have five children to take care of, and their income has dropped precipitously since their business closed. Aaron now works as a garbage collector. They say the fine could bankrupt them. So shortly after the decision was handed down, supporters started taking up a collection on the popular GoFundMe website. In just a few hours, donors had contributed $109,000 to the Kleins. Then GoFundMe, under pressure from critics of the Kleins, shut down the fundraiser. The rationale? The website has a policy of refusing fundraisers “in defense of formal charges of heinous crimes, including violent, hateful, or sexual acts.”
Though it is appalling to see the details, the broad brush of this vindictive SJW story is familiar.

But this was new to me. In all the accounts I have scanned, I have never seen this aspect highlighted. Which seems odd to me because it adds a whole new light to the SJW abuse.
Behind the organized campaign to pressure GoFundMe was Lisa Watson, the owner of Cupcake Jones in downtown Portland. (Cupcake Jones also provides wedding cakes and was presumably a competitor of Sweet Cakes By Melissa.) “This business has been found GUILTY OF DISCRIMINATION and is being allowed to fundraise to pay their penalty. .  .  . The amount of money they have raised in a matter of a few hours by thousands of anonymous cowards is disgusting,” Watson wrote on her Facebook page.
You can dress up this campaign by Watson as a SJW noble movement, but surely it is relevant that the chief persecutor of the Klein's is a commercial competitor presumably deriving pecuniary advantage from the abuse of the Kleins and of the court system.

Perhaps it is not quite as bad as Hemingway's single paragraph would seem to indicate. Still, I am surprised that of all the accounts out there, this might be the only one to even draw attention to the fact that the campaign is being spearheaded by a commercial competitor.

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