Aaron and Melissa Klein, the owners of Sweet Cakes by Melissa in Gresham, Oregon, have been forced to pay $135,000 to a same-sex couple after they initially refused to bake them a cake for their wedding. Rachel Bowman-Cryer and her wife, Laurel Bowman-Cryer, claimed the owners caused “mental rape” after refusing to service them because of their Christian beliefs.
This case was initially reported by the Inquisitr back in April, when the $135,000 the Sweet Cakes by Melissa owners were to pay had not yet been finalized. The couple was officially sentenced to pay the amount to the Cryers on Thursday.
Now, Aaron Klein is speaking out on the issue, saying that he’s not going to give up. During an interview with the Blaze, the Sweet Cakes by Melissa co-owner said he is outraged at Oregon Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian, who handed out the final ruling.
“He wants to silence anyone who opposes his point of view. Unfortunately, he’s doing this with the wrong Christian, because I fight back.”
Klein also said that other Christian business owners should be “ready” for the possibility of a similar situation happening to them.
“For years, we’ve heard same-sex marriage will not affect anybody. I’m here firsthand to tell everyone in America that it has already impacted people. Christians, get ready to take a stand. Get ready for civil disobedience.”
— Lezbelib.com (@Lezbelib) April 30, 2015
Sweet Cakes by Melissa closed back in 2013, when the case first started garnering national attention. But the Kleins continue to operate their business from their home. In a statement on their Facebook page, the Kleins said they will continue to fight this ruling.
“We will NOT give up this fight, and we will NOT be silenced. We stand for God’s truth, God’s word and freedom for ALL [A]mericans. We are here to obey God not man, and we will not conform to this world.”
While the Kleins feel their First Amendment rights were violated, Avakian noted in his final order that what the couple did is considered illegal “under Oregon law,” according to KATU.
“This case is not about a wedding cake or a marriage. It is about a business’s refusal to serve someone because of their sexual orientation.”
— Dominic Holden (@dominicholden) July 2, 2015
The Kleins now have the right to an appeal. One of their attorneys, Anna Harmon, was surprised to hear the final ruling.
“This is a shocking result which shows the state’s relentless campaign to punish Oregonians who live and work according to their faith.”
Harmon added that the Sweet Cakes by Melissa owners are both hard-working citizens that are, unfortunately, being punished by the state in which they live.
“The State of Oregon, through an administrative agency, has ordered that all they worked for should be taken away simply because they declined to participate in an event which violated their religious beliefs.”
Do you believe the owners of Sweet Cakes by Melissa had their rights violated?
[Image via Twitter]