Whether it is the 30 second Tastemade videos or the dozens of shows that have taken over television, baking and the artists that make these goods have become a sensation. We are consumed by not only the taste of these sweet treats, but the look of them as well. The saying “you eat with your eyes first” has truly come to life. The creativity of these bakers is no longer confined to just the ingredients of the desserts, the decoration of the dessert has become just as vital to the experience as the taste.
Wedding cakes are particularly artistic. While we may not see a multitude of them on our social media, they are a quintessential part of any wedding. It is an expression and representation of the couple in a consumable form. Baking is more than just a service industry, it is a creative industry.
In June of 2018 the Supreme Court made a decision in favor of the artistic desires of a baker. A baker by the name of Jack Phillips, refused to create a wedding cake for a same-sex couple and his decision was upheld by the Supreme Court. Based on his Christian beliefs, Phillips believes that it is his right to deny their request. The couple, Mullins and Craig, originally filed a complaint with the Colorado Civil Rights Commission and won, but Phillips then took it to Court of Appeals. Based on his right to freedom of religion, they sided with Phillips.
This case involves the right to freedom of expression, the ability for an individual to hold certain opinions without interference. However this freedom is continually restricted by means of censorship and legislation, including the suppression of religious freedom. Based on these freedoms, it seems that the bakers refusal to make the cake is within his rights, but it still poses a rather complex issue. If the baker had refused to make a cake for a person of a different race because of his beliefs, would that still be right?
This decision could be setting a very serious precedent for all future cases. Artists can’t be forced to create, but should they be allowed to deny certain people because their beliefs are different?