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Jew vs. Jew: Wedding Cake Edition

A battle over marriage equality spills over into the icing

Adam Chandler
February 13, 2013

Last month, a same-sex couple in search of a wedding cake approached Sweet Cakes, a bakery in Oregon co-owned by one Aaron Klein, and requested that Sweet Cakes make their wedding cake. Klein, citing his religious beliefs, denied them.

Aaron Klein, who owns the bakery with his wife, Melissa, told ABC News affiliate KATU-TV, he was living in accordance with his religious beliefs when he declined to make the brides a wedding cake.

“I honestly did not mean to hurt anybody, didn’t mean to make anybody upset, [it’s] just something I believe in very strongly,” he said.

Klein became a target for national derision as well as the beneficiary of a surge in support from local patrons, who felt he was free to discriminate wantonly make his own business decisions.

The couple, undeterred, simply enlisted another baker, but it wasn’t long before they were also approached by Duff Goldman, star of the hit show Ace of Cakes, who offered to bake and deliver them a wedding cake for free all the way from Baltimore.

The blushing brides happily accepted, but have decided to keep their other cake because…well…why not have two cakes? They’ve directed people who feel strongly about their story to donate to a non-profit called Pride Northwest on their behalf.

As for Klein, the Oregon state attorney general’s office is debating whether or not he violated the Oregon Equality Act, which passed in 2007, in denying service to the couple.

Until that is decided, The Scroll happily bestows upon Aaron Klein the Walter Sobchak Award.

Adam Chandler was previously a staff writer at Tablet. His work has appeared in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Atlantic, Slate, Esquire, New York, and elsewhere. He tweets @allmychandler.

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