Fox's Hasselbeck: Are Gay Rights The “Death Of Free Enterprise” In America?

Fox's Elisabeth Hasselbeck interviewed the owner of a Colorado bakery who was recently found to have violated the state's non-discrimination law by refusing to make a cake for a same-sex wedding, asking if he believed his rights had been violated by efforts to prohibit anti-LGBT discrimination.

During the December 10 edition of Fox & Friends, Hasselbeck invited Jack Phillips, owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop in Denver, to discuss a recent ruling by a Colorado judge that found that Phillips had violated that state's law against discrimination when he refused to serve a same-sex couple. Phillips was joined by his attorney Nicolle Martin, who does volunteer work at the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), a group notorious for pushing for the criminalization of homosexuality internationally.

During the segment - which featured a graphic declaring “The Death Of Free Enterprise” - Hasselbeck asked Phillips why he believed he shouldn't have to abandon his “personal religious beliefs just to make a buck”:

As the judge in who issued the decision in Phillip's case made clear, requiring business owners who operate in the public market to abide by non-discrimination laws isn't a violation of the business owner's religious liberty or free speech rights. Business owners like Phillips may have a personal aversion to serving gay customers, but personal animus - even when it is based in sincerely held religious beliefs - isn't a good enough reason to discriminate against an entire group of customers. A racist business owner, for example, would be prohibited under Colorado law from refusing to bake a cake for the wedding ceremony of a non-white couple.

Fox's “death of free enterprise” framing isn't surprising. The network has spent the last several months championing business owners who choose to discriminate against gay customers, falsely pitting basic LGBT equality against an extreme and legally baseless conception of religious liberty.