Friday, December 10, 2010

Just Cookies Just Won't Discriminate

Just Cookies, the bakery in City Market which refused to sell cupcakes to a GLBT organization on the IUPUI campus in celebration of National Coming Out Day, has reached a settlement agreement with the City of Indianapolis whereby it agrees to abide by the terms of the City's human rights ordinance in the future as a condition to keeping its lease in City Market and posting a notice of the policy at its place of business. The City's human rights ordinance prohibits discrimination in public accommodations based on a person's sexual orientation or gender identity. It also requires businesses that do business with city and county agencies to have policies prohibiting discrimination on these bases. Indiana Equality, an organization that claims to support GLBT rights, angered members of its own community when it and two of its board members, City-County Councilor Jackie Nytes and former City-County Councilor Scott Keller, the original co-sponsors of the HRO, took the view the bakery did not violate the ordinance by refusing to sell rainbow-colored cupcakes to the organization and urged the community to drop its complaint against the business. Obviously, the city's office of corporation counsel viewed the matter differently.


artfuggins said...

Nytes sold out the gay community on this issue just like she has sold out the citizens of her district over and over again.

Paul K. Ogden said...

I think you give Corporation Counsel too much credit. I know we disagree, Gary, but the City was going to face a lawsuit if they terminated the lease based on the refusal to make those cookies, cupcakes, or whatever it was. The City had gone too far out on the limb on this one. This is just a face-saving settlement for everyone involved.

Unigov said...

Please hear me out, as I am a supporter of gay rights.

Just Cookies did not discriminate against gays by not making rainbow cookies. They would have sold good to gays or anyone else, but they don't have to make a product that differs from their religious beliefs.

If I go to a tattoo artist who belongs to religion "A", and I ask him to give me a tattoo that says "Religion A's deity sucks", it's not discrimination for the tattoo artist to refuse my business.

This whole affair is overblown and taking away from serious causes, like gay marriage.

Gary R. Welsh said...

I think that is a false comparison, Unigov. There was nothing offensive about rainbow-colored cupcakes. If a you had walked in and said I would like to order rainbow-colored cupcakes for my daughter's birthday party, the owner wouldn't have had a problem with it. What he objected to according to his own words was selling cupcakes to a GLBT-oriented organization. If they had requested he make cupcakes with something obscene depicted on them, he would have been well within his rights to decline to make them if he so chose. A tattoo artist is a bad analogy to use. From what I can tell, there is nothing most of them won't tattoo on someone's body as long as they pay for it. They don't seem to have any problem with swastikis, violent gang symbols, etc.

indyernie said...

Gary the only cupcake I've ever seen at that cookie shop was a 20 year old blonde, she was in front of me placing her order for cookies.
If a shop sells just tires and you need wheels, is that shop required to sell you what it doesn't have just because you’re of a different sexual orientation?
Clearly, the owner opened his mouth and inserted his foot, he should have kept his anti gay opinions to himself but, he doesn't have to sell what he doesn’t produce or stock.

Gary R. Welsh said...

Ernie, We've been over that point before. Just Cookies did in fact sell cupcakes and its website indicated as much.