Gay activist backs bakers in gay cake appeal (UK)

MailOnline 2 February 2016
Veteran campaigner Peter Tatchell yesterday came out in support of a Christian bakery company which refused to sell a cake with a gay rights slogan.

He said he had changed his mind about Ashers Bakery in Belfast, who were found to have broken anti-discrimination laws when they declined an order for a cake with the slogan ‘support gay marriage’.

The change of heart from one of the longest standing and most widely respected among gay campaigners came in advance of an appeal in the case which begins tomorrow.

The McArthur family who run the bakery are challenging the finding that they broke Northern Ireland’s anti-discrimination rules when they refused to sell the cake to activist Gareth Lee.

Mr Tatchell said: ‘Much as I wish to defend the gay community, I also want to defend freedom of conscience, expression and religion.’

As a result of the court ruling against the bakery, far right agitators could force Muslim printers to publish cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed, or Jewish printers to reproduce Holocaust denial material, he added.

‘Will gay bakers have to accept orders for cakes with homophobic slurs?’ Mr Tatchell asked.

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