Readers Write: Dec. 10

Business owners must serve all the public

I have to take issue with some of the content of Star Parker’s column “Wedding cake for gay couple bashes blessings of liberty,” Opinion, Dec. 6, about the wedding cake case before the Supreme Court. She implies in her column that all Christians are against same-sex marriage, however I know of many same-sex couples who are practicing Christians and some Christian churches that perform and recognize same-sex marriages. Star Parker is not speaking for all Christians and should not imply that she is doing so.

People who have businesses which serve the public should serve all of the public. Those who cannot do that have the freedom to seek other employment. Since when should public establishments get to declare that they will only serve those who have the same beliefs as the owner or the waitstaff? Are we soon once again to see mixed-race couples get thrown out of restaurants because some owner declares mingling races are against his religious beliefs? This is a dangerous and what I believe to be an unconstitutional slippery slope to incivility and discrimination in the public sphere.

JEAN REBER, DULUTH

Merger will hurt working-class families

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I’m the mother of a 22-month-old son, and I’m worried about the proposed merger of mega-corporations Bayer AG and Monsanto. If this plan is approved, the already high food prices families pay today are going to rise even more, and the ability of moms like me and families like mine to choose what we put on the dinner table will be diminished.

For mine, and for most Georgia families, increased grocery bills force them to rethink their household budgets. Since Bayer and Monsanto are both already major players in agriculture, a merger of this size would no doubt decrease competition for farmers, increasing their prices, and ultimately passing those increases to families like mine who are already on a tight budget. From the research I’ve done, food prices would increase anywhere from 2 percent to 18 percent. An increase of this size would be very hard on my family.

I’m a lawyer, not a farmer, but I know that agriculture is the backbone of Georgia’s economy, from family farmers to those that have helped make our nation the greatest food producer in the world. But I believe consumers’ rights need to be respected as well. I am hopeful that conservative, family focused voices in our government will make sure those commonsense rules are considered in this case and oppose the Bayer/Monsanto merger now. Georgia families are depending on it.

JEN SWINDALL, ATLANTA

What about the families of accused?

The more I read about the sexual escapades of men in the public eye, I’m struck at the one thing all the stories have in common: Little or no reference to the wives to whom they have been unfaithful.

In generations past, the more-tragic story in all of this would have been about the immorality of men who commit adultery, wreaking havoc on the true victims; their wives and families. Marriage vows it seems, are not the bond they used to be.

DOUG LOCKER, DECATUR

Should gov’t be able to force bakers’ hands?

The article “Opponents in LGBT case agree: It’s not about wedding cake,” News, Dec. 3, couches the Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission Supreme Court case as an artist’s freedom of expression versus the survival of LGBT people. The case arose through a baker’s refusal to create a cake for a gay couple’s wedding. The baker does not discriminate against customers based on race, creed, color, or sexual orientation. He has declined to make a cake honoring a ceremony to which he’s religiously opposed.

The question: Can the state conscript a baker (or others) to create a product that goes against the person’s core — in this case, religious — beliefs? Could a black baker be compelled by a white customer to prepare a cake decorated with KKK-figures carrying Confederate flags? Could a male, knit-hat maker be compelled to make pink “vagina hats” for a women’s march? We’ll see.

GREGORY MARSHALL, MARIETTA

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