The New Mexico Supreme Court has ruled that the First Amendment does not protect the owners of a photography studio who refused, because of their Christians beliefs, to serve a lesbian couple.
Jon and Elaine Hugunin of Albuquerque, the court said, “can no more turn away customers on the basis of sexual orientation – photographing a same-sex marriage ceremony – than they could refuse to photograph African-Americans or Muslims.”
The stunning verdict came in a case brought by lesbians against Elane Photography. The lesbians wanted the photographer to document their “wedding,” and the studio declined, claiming it would violate the Christian faith of the owners.
Tough luck, said judges Edward Chavez, Petra Jimenez Maes, Charles Daniels, Barbara Vigil and Richard Bosson. They make clear the company has the option of going out of business.