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Flowers, Faith, and Religious Freedom

Family Policy Matters / NC Family Policy
The Truth Network Radio
June 10, 2019 8:00 am

Flowers, Faith, and Religious Freedom

Family Policy Matters / NC Family Policy

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June 10, 2019 8:00 am

This week on Family Policy Matters, NC Family brings you a Q&A session between NC Family President John Rustin, Barronelle Stutzman, and Kellie Fiedorek, from our NC Family Major Speakers Dinner in Raleigh. Stutzman is the Washington State florist whose religious liberty case made it all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court. Fiedorek is an attorney with Alliance Defending Freedom, who represents Stutzman in her ongoing defense of her religious liberties.

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This is family policy matters weekly radio show and Comcast found the family designed to better inform listeners about the issues and encouraging voices and persuasion for family values and answer session, family majors and rally featuring Baron L. Stutzman, Kelly Fedora and NC family Pres. John Reston Baron L. Stutzman is the Washington State Forest whose religious liberty case made it all the way to the US Supreme Court. Kelly Fedora is an attorney with alliance defending freedom to represent Stutzman in her continued defense of her religious freedom like you and Darrell like you oh so much for being here so you mentioned that you want a flower shop so tell us all a little bit about how you got started in floral design.

If you would know I was never to be a florist.

My mom bought a floor shop and she asked me if I would deliver for her after I got off work and I said sure which was a really bad mistake because I am directionally handicapped. I do not know, North, South, East and West I delivery career was very short and my mom was a great salesperson. That and she came up with all these brilliant ideas, they should say I sold this to figure out how to make it and that's how I learned my creativity part and one time she came up to me and she said I soliciting a bouquet and I want you to deliver it to Apple, credit union, which is a huge credit I'm going okay so I'm standing in the middle of Happel credit union singing you light up my life holding this okay. It was one of my worst experience industry but this to turn into a career with Orleans flowers. So tell us a little bit about the shop to review her experiences and how you have grown into that industry, just as the bone roof Orleans. It's an awesome shop.

We have 11 crewmembers and we served the community for over 47 years on our third generation of Pro flowers and we just considered a mission field. We are so blessed to be able to wait on people, especially sympathy work when people come in and we will pray with them if they likely will sit talk them will find out about the love when they lost. Maybe, perhaps it's a grandparent and we find out what memories do they have them and we always ask people to come in and look at the flowers before their delivered and if they come in and walk in the cooler and burst into tears and say that's grandpa when we know we've done our job well.

So you put a lot of yourself into these arrangements and the work that you do for your customers, so I know you have a lot of customers and have had a lot of customers over the years but talk to us a little bit about Rob who is the customer that you had for many years who ended up being the subject of this lawsuit, Rob was one of my favorite customers. I wait on him for almost 10 years. I knew Rob was gay from the beginning. It didn't matter. He would come in and he would ask me to create arrangements for birthdays or special events, told me what he the theme was and I love doing flooring he would pick out unusual containers and he would say do your thing which I love to go out the box to make some different unusual. He was a joy to work with and if you walked into my shop tomorrow. I would wait on them for another 10 years so what happened in 2013, the changed all of this Washington passed the same-sex marriage and I knew Rob was coming in to talk to me about his wedding had been in twice before so I went home and I talked to Darrell. This is where it can do about this and he said was very clear. The Bible is very strong on this so it was my job to tell Rob the best I could without hurting his feelings. So when Rob came into talk to me about his wedding. I just simply put my hands on his nice it Rob, I'm sorry I can't do your wedding because my relationship with Jesus Christ and he said he understood.

He said his mom felt the same way. He was hoping that she would walking down the aisle, but she wasn't sure. We talked about his engagement.

Why did you decide to get married just chit chatted for a while.

He asked if I would recommend another florist which I did and we hug each other and Rob left his partner put something on social media.

That night that simply said Darnell has every right to believe the way she does she hurt our feelings and from there went viral. So after that went viral. Kelly told us about what transpired.

What's interesting with their health cases that generally complaints are filed with the state human rights commission, and then that this commission this determines whether or not there is probable cause to proceed with the investigation. A case goes forward and Baranowski is no complaint was ever filed. The same-sex couple never filed a complaint and went viral and the Washington State Atty. Gen. actually found out about what happened to social media. I decide to come after they are not himself that he was the first to file a lawsuit against her saying that she had violated washes law against discrimination, and then the ACLU also on then about a week later on behalf of the couple then also sued her, and in both lawsuits interpersonally and corporately easily see Darlene's flowers but then they also sued a bear not a personal capacity, which means they can go after all of her assets and washing stately property states. They also go after go after her husband so I was really record as I think I'm past that we've we've never seen a stay Atty. Gen. go after one of its citizens and in such a form and fashion before so said targeted toward toward her supernal after this happened, of course, all of this went bought lots of different ways.

I know that you were attacked verbally and otherwise personally toast a little bit about threatening calls and hate mail. In both things that you received in response, the day that this went viral. We have five lines in our shop seven in the morning till six at night and for two weeks solid. Our phones rang constantly with death threats, computer threats, picketing threats, we had to notify the police. I had to change the way I drove to work. We had to install a security system. It was unreal. And the worst part is when the people called with the hate that they would not listen, take care to hear the truth, and it just broke my heart that they were so angry, so frustrated your visor open to how hateful the world is and how people react to something that they they didn't have the facts, they didn't know that I waited on Rob for all those years there now on a little bit of a lighter note I get a little bit about the security system that you that you decided to emulate years ago ethics that are I going to work really early like 530 in the morning and we have all these glass windows in front of our shop and one morning I drove up and I saw this person in the shop.

I packed my car up and went over the street and cross a street called the police and they came in with her dog in and found the guy and searched everything for me and then officer was leaving. He said he should get a dog. He said people are really scared when a dog comes in and you know didn't know if he was kidding or not I thought I can get a dog. It was and let them in and out so and so forth. But for months after that. When I came to work.

I would open the door not the lot that securely give us an update if you want about where things stand with respect to Bruno's case no cell car keys when all the way up to the Washington state Supreme Court was interesting. There he Atty. Gen. conceded during oral argument that when Baranowski creates floral arrangements. She does that is, in fact, speech mean that would be protected under the First Amendment, with huge concession and even bother little bit some of that some of the justices because they question him on that a little bit impressed them in and label it speech is protected but the government can still tell her what she can and can't say Oracle can can create because that's what the government should do that is unlike her viewpoint essentially is is what they said. So we lost it at the Washington state Supreme Court 90. We appealed to the US Supreme Court and it getting put on hold pending decision so that we be kicked up decision last June, and the Supreme Court GDR at her case which basely means they granted, vacated, remanded, and since he took away the lower court's ruling Internet back down to the Washington state Supreme Court. Thank you that need to re-examine her case in light of what we just said and in the masterpiece cake shop case is now way fully briefed. We've sent our brief that ašai has had as well and what is waiting for oral argument date to be set back at the Washington state required in the Washington Supreme Court told me I could have my faith. I just couldn't practice it to burn or how did you feel when you heard from radio. Radio represents bit or no lips and struck Phillips and many other people whose religious liberties have been infringed upon and wants of different areas. How did you feel you heard from radio about the Elko move objects case and then how about had an impact on your mother call me at 830 in the morning, which was 530 my time and Kristin told me and I was so excited because I really do think were going when and so I just prayed and I think God and I cried that my daughter and we just hugged each other was was pretty exciting to know that we have another chance to protect our freedoms so much and it's a little bit from your standpoint.

Girls what really is at stake in the outcome of this case for you pretty much everything we can lose our home retirement our life savings. Everything we work for for our kids or grandkids.

The government can lose our taxes are our stake in loser taxes our employees lose their jobs or wholesalers can lose our business.

It's a trickle-down effect simply because we have a different viewpoint on marriage. Rob occurred at every right to believe and act on their faith. We are only asking for the same. One thing is to add their reasons and I will ask you why. Why can she lose everything. It's because right now they use attorneys fees are well at this point, all well over 1 million close to $2 million, and where only of the states up in court against a really long a long journey and so that's that's how these things add up to a sheik she could could lose lose everything they could come after everything to be able to force her to build pain that Joey Justice Ginsburg commented on Bruno's case saying that she thought it might be the next US Supreme Court that her case did not have the hostility that she mentioned Ruth of the Jock Phillips case so some different fact scenarios there that could bode one way or the other. So tell us your thoughts about Orleans flowers case and how that might differ from drug Phillips of the Supreme Court ordered consideration. Some people have asked, as John said in in the masterpiece cake Case one of the key components of that but the court said that the government, the commission With hostility toward the person can exemplify the hostility toward a person's religious police of the convictions and system is speculated that the same hostility which is very overt about their health case, but the hostility exists here just as much. One person for most of the Atty. Gen. went after her complaint being filed. Heat on his own initiative he went after her.

He's traveled around the state meeting her and and saying uncharitable things about her. In terms of what her convictions are what hurt, whatever her standpoint is, there's there's some other other things, they are in the in the in the case of how the government's treat her.

That certainly seems to rise the same level hostility.

The court found found in in masterpiece cake shop sure that we do need to drawl or time hereto."

As we are not sure to ask you for the folks here and thank you for sharing so personally and transparently about your experience tell you wisdom and understanding about the law and all the various aspects of this journal is we, of Endor, Tom here.

Is there anything countable in your heart that you like to share with the conflicts here in Raleigh. Never in a million years and I think I'd be happier telling my life and livelihood on the line.

This was not a list government is telling us that we have no freedoms they are telling us what to think what to do, what to say, what to create and how to believe and if we don't do this were told we will be destroyed. I'm not up here to get sympathy or to get media coverage I'm up here because my life is real. My business is real in my family. If we do not start to stand and speak out. We do not fight for our freedoms. Soon there will be nothing to stand for it because our voices will not be heard when my kids my grandkids come up and say grandma what happened to our faith. What happened to our freedom, or worse yet, when I kneeling before Christ, and he puts his faith, his hands on my face and says peritoneal what to do to uphold my item on my answer to be listening radio show and asked from family to listen to the show online for more resources that will help you be a voice of persuasion in your community. Go to our website and see family of RG, and less on Instagram and Twitter

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