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Scardina v. Masterpiece Cakeshop

Description:  The same attorney who filed an unsuccessful complaint with the Colorado Civil Rights Commission in 2017 commenced a lawsuit in state court over the same custom cake request the attorney made at that time. The request was for a custom-designed cake, pink on the inside and blue on the outside, to reflect and celebrate a gender transition. Phillips’ shop declined that request because the customer specifically requested that the cake express messages and celebrate an event in conflict with Phillips’ religious beliefs. The decision was not because of the person who requested it, as Phillips would not create a cake expressing the requested message no matter who asked for it.


Jack Phillips, owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop
Wednesday, Jun 16, 2021

The following quote may be attributed to Alliance Defending Freedom General Counsel Kristen Waggoner regarding a Colorado trial court’s decision Tuesday in Scardina v. Masterpiece Cakeshop that punishes cake artist Jack Phillips for not designing a custom pink-and-blue cake celebrating a gender transition when asked to do so by an activist attorney:

“Jack Phillips serves all people but shouldn’t be forced to create custom cakes with messages that violate his conscience. In this case, an activist attorney demanded Jack create custom cakes in order to ‘test’ Jack and ‘correct the errors’ of his thinking, and the activist even threatened to sue Jack again if the case is dismissed for any reason. Radical activists and government officials are targeting artists like Jack because they won’t promote messages on marriage and sexuality that violate their core convictions. This case and others—including the case of floral artist Barronelle Stutzman, whose petition is pending before the U.S. Supreme Court—represents a disturbing trend: the weaponization of our justice system to ruin those with whom the activists disagree. The harassment of people like Jack and Barronelle has been occurring for nearly a decade and must stop. We will appeal this decision and continue to defend the freedom of all Americans to peacefully live and work according to their deeply held beliefs without fear of punishment.”

Alliance Defending Freedom is an alliance-building, non-profit legal organization committed to protecting religious freedom, free speech, parental rights, and the sanctity of life.

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Featured Coverage

  • Adam Liptak: Cake is his ‘art.’ So can he deny one to a gay couple? (New York Times, 2017-09-16)
  • William McGurn: The Christian baker who said ‘no’ (Wall Street Journal, 2021-03-22)
  • Fox & Friends: Interview with Jack Phillips and Kristen Waggoner (Fox News, 2021-03-25)
  • Night Court with Shannon Bream: Interview with Jack Phillips and Kristen Waggoner (Fox News, 2021-03-27)

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Photos: Jack Phillips and Masterpiece Cakeshop

ABOUT Kristen Waggoner

Kristen K. Waggoner serves as general counsel with Alliance Defending Freedom. In this role, Waggoner oversees the U.S. legal division, a team of 100 attorneys and staff who engage in litigation, public advocacy, and legislative support. ADF has represented the prevailing parties in multiple U.S. Supreme Court victories, including Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission and Uzuegbunam v. Preczewski, which she argued at the Supreme Court. She also served as counsel in the free speech victory the Supreme Court handed down in National Institute of Family and Life Advocates v. Becerra. She is a Peer Review Rated AV® Preeminent™ attorney in Martindale-Hubbell, who clerked for Justice Richard B. Sanders of the Washington Supreme Court after law school and served in private practice in Seattle for nearly 20 years. Waggoner is admitted to practice in multiple states, the Supreme Court, and numerous federal district and appellate courts.