In July 2012, when the federal government and most states in the United States did not legally recognize gay marriages, a Colorado baker found himself the subject of an anti-discrimination case for refusing to make a same-sex wedding cake on religious grounds.
Years later, Jack Phillips found himself before the highest court in the land, where the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in his favor in Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission.
Phillips details experiences with the litigation, his upbringing and faith background in the book The Cost of My Faith: How a Decision in My Cake Shop Took Me to the Supreme Court, scheduled for release through Salem Books on May 18.
In the book, Phillips documents his multiple legal battles over his decisions not to make a cake celebrating a same-sex wedding or a cake celebrating a gender transition.
Even though Phillips eventually won his legal battle against the same-sex couple with a 2018 Supreme Court victory, he is still dealing with litigation surrounding his refusal to make a cake celebrating a gender transition for transgender attorney Autumn Scardina.
In March, Denver District Court Judge A. Bruce Jones dropped one of the two charges leveled against Phillips, with the other being argued in trial court later that month; a decision is pending.
The Christian Post recently spoke with Phillips, covering topics such as why he wrote his book, the struggle to convey his beliefs to those who disagree with him and how he felt about one conservative activist’s efforts to sue bakeries that refused to make a cake with an anti-gay message. Below are excerpts from that interview.
CP: What led you to write this book?
Phillips: The first thing that came to my mind about writing this book was that I want my kids and my grandkids to know the true story of what happened back there in July 2012 and what’s happened since, as it’s difficult to find all of those kind of facts on the internet, or at least factual facts.
CP: You mentioned in the book about wanting to go back to July 2012 to explain more to the same-sex couple about why you refused to make the gay wedding cake. What would have you said if you could have done it again?
Phillips: The same thing I’ve been saying to hundreds of people ever since — that I serve everybody who comes in my shop, but there are certain cakes that I can’t create because of an inherent message or written message that the cake would contain and that I can’t convey.
In their case, it was a cake that had a different view of marriage. I believe the biblical view of marriage. It’s between a man and a woman. I would gladly serve these people, these two men, any other cake, other custom works or sell them anything out of my showcase. [I would tell them] that it was not them that I was not serving. I was just declining to create a cake that went against my core beliefs. But they were welcome in my shop.
That’s what I would try and explain to them.
I tried to explain it to this attorney, Scardina, that is suing me this go-around. We had a face-to-face meeting, Scardina and myself, this attorney. And in that meeting, I tried to explain that there are just certain cakes that I couldn’t create and that I would gladly create other custom work for this attorney. It was just the particular cake, in this case celebrating a gender transition, that I couldn’t create.