Amicus Curiae Brief

Faculty Sponsor

Amanda Zelechoski


Arts and Sciences



Presentation Type

Poster Presentation

Symposium Date

Spring 5-3-2018


The issue involved in this case is "whether applying Colorado's public accommodations law to compel the petitioner to create expression that violates his sincerely held religious beliefs about marriage violates the free speech or free exercise clauses of the First Amendment." According to Phillips, he is a specialist in custom made cake designs. As stated in his Masterpiece's website states, Phillips is able to make any custom made cake for all his clients. However, I support Phillips stand for refusing to make a custom made cake that goes beyond his religious beliefs that he holds strongly and respects. Making a rainbow-layered specialty cake that represents the same-sex marriage goes against what Phlillips' religious beliefs and puts him in a difficult position where he has to choose between serving his customers and going against his personal religious beliefs that prohibit any support of same sex-marriage.

Given that the rainbow-layered cake is a reflection of the values of the gay community, if Phillips has never participated in the creation of a rainbow-layered cake previously which he considers well associated with the gay community, hence he has a right to turn down the offer from the in accordance to his rights to Free Speech or Free Exercise. A request made for the creation of a custom made designed cake does not necessarily mean that Phillips has to comply with the request.As such, I see no wrong with the refusal of Phillips to create a cake that contravenes his strongly held religious beliefs.

In retrospect, everyone is entitle to their own values and beliefs regardless of what other people believe. However, such beliefs should not cause harm to others when being exercised. As such as Phillips should be tolerant and respectful to his customers' beliefs, there should also be tolerance and respect to his religious believes by not forcing him to create a cake that opposes his religious values. In this sense a line must be drawn on ensuring that a person's or groups' beliefs do not harm those of others.

Biographical Information about Author(s)

I was intrigued by this topic because of the current event on immigration and religious. To label certain groups or religious of person, it goes against everything that I stand for because we outer to treat everyone with respect and dignity despite what are their beliefs. We all have rights to refuse offers or services that goes against what we stand for. We all created equal regardless your background, color, and religion.

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