Discrimination | Gay Marriage | News | Washington

Florist Tells Longtime Gay Customer That She Won't Do His Wedding Because of Her Relationship with Jesus: VIDEO


A Washington florist is violating the state's laws after refusing to do flowers for a gay longtime customer's wedding, KNDU reports:

Rob wanted to go with the florist he and Curt have been using for years, Barronelle Stuzman, the owner of Arlene's Flowers in Richland.

However, when he asked her, Stuzman politely declined. "And I just took his hands and I said I'm sorry I can't do your wedding because of my relationship with Jesus Christ," said Stuzman who believes marriage should be between one man and one woman...

...Stuzman said she had mixed reactions and so much attention that she posted a response on Arlene's Flowers' Facebook page.

"I've had hate mail. I've had people who want to burn my building, I've had people say they'll never shop here again and tell all their friends. And I've had other people say thanks for standing up for your convictions and we'll shop here and we'll back you in any way we can," Stuzman said.

Despite their differences and the opinions of many, Jill Mullins, of the QLaw Foundation, which is a gay rights attorney organization, said Stuzman did violate the Washington Law Against Discrimination, found in RCW 49.60.030, the Freedom from discrimination - Declaration of civil rights.


NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

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  1. "I jus can't do yer weddin buckets cause yer a heathen muslim and jesus told me to hate ya with a this here self-righteous smile on my overweight face."

    This woman is nothing but a mean old bigot. She's going to have a big surprise when she finally meets Jesus in the next life and he's having a party with the gays and all the other folks of whom she so self-righteously disapproves.

    PS: If you're so worried about sin, looks like you forgot that gluttony is one them. Or do you consider yourself above your own book of moral laws?

    Posted by: Janice | Mar 6, 2013 8:08:18 PM

  2. I need to see some evidence about her claims that she received hate mails threatening to burn her building down. It's easy to say things like that to make the other side look bad when in fact you know that you are on the wrong and losing side of the argument.

    Posted by: gayalltheway | Mar 6, 2013 8:12:25 PM

  3. @Will: I'd agree that we don't need to hurl insults at her - politely filing a complaint with the state attorney general's office will suffice.

    She's violating the law, and should know it. While she can give her flowers to Jesus, she may end up giving a chunk of her cash to Caesar (to use a Biblical reference).

    Posted by: Bill | Mar 6, 2013 8:12:53 PM

  4. While the intellectually stunted neocons may say "it's her right, and it's our right to shop elsewhere", they miss the point.

    i mean the OTHER point; not the point about how this actually goes against WA's laws.

    the other point - that there's a complete and total difference between "i won't serve you because you're gay" and "i won't serve you because you're a discriminatory bigot."

    if you can't see the difference, you're probably a gay republican.

    Posted by: Little Kiwi | Mar 6, 2013 8:13:36 PM

  5. When will people use God given free will and see through the nonsense of that magic book called the bible. It has been used for both hospitals and holocausts. Does the florist still stone prostitutes. God says... Question religion. Choose love over hate and give the wedding some flowers lady.

    Posted by: timothyjames | Mar 6, 2013 8:37:57 PM

  6. Can we at least stop calling her a mean vicious lady?

    Stuzman politely declined. "And I just took his hands and I said I'm sorry I can't do your wedding because of my relationship with Jesus Christ."

    We have SO MUCH to be grateful for, especially with the March 26 & 27 SCOTUS trials coming up. This is a garden-variety Christian who believes marriage is between a man and a woman. People are born and indoctrinated with these prejudices and she may be one of the ones too old to change. Go to another florist. It does our movement a disservice when we target every cake maker and dress alterer and flower woman with a court case if they don't comply with our requests. We have bigger fish to fry.

    That said, I'm highly optimistic that Kennedy is going to swing our way at verdict time in June -- and maybe Roberts, too. I wish they'd televise this case. It has, potentially, national implications and future generations might like to see it.

    Posted by: will | Mar 6, 2013 8:39:08 PM

  7. No Will, I'm afraid you're wrong on this one. Look at it clearly... There are religions in this country that actually preach that persons of color are less-righteous than "white" people. Some business owners truly believe that [terrible] doctrine to be true. Yet, under Washington law, they do NOT have the right to discriminate against those persons of color, no matter how strongly they believe in their own personal religious convictions. Bigots do not get a free pass. It's a matter of law.

    Posted by: Joe | Mar 6, 2013 8:42:55 PM

  8. Her toll-free number is 800-692-0706. Please call her and encourage her - in keeping with her convictions - to refund all the money that she willingly took from that gay couple over the years.

    Posted by: Joe | Mar 6, 2013 8:45:24 PM

  9. @Joe: I think what you are suggesting is harassment. I think a better idea is to boycott her shop and get all your gay and straight friends and relatives to do likewise.

    Posted by: andrew | Mar 6, 2013 8:53:47 PM

  10. "Relationship with Jesus"? She looks like she'd prefer Mary Magdalene. Another hypocrite closet case.

    Posted by: Jeff | Mar 6, 2013 8:53:59 PM

  11. Except, Will, you have it backwards: the guys didn't single her out or target her for disrespect; she targeted them. They'd been loyal customers for years and had every reason to believe they could enter her shop and be treated with dignity, like any other customer. By calling attention to this, they are doing a service to other gay couples and their allies who will now know to shop elsewhere.

    The point isn't that they can't find another flower shop but that they shouldn't have to, especially not in a state that has passed law saying that if you want to serve the public in this state you serve all the public regardless of your personal intolerances. If a shop owner can't treat customers as they would rightly expect to be treated themselves, they should be out of business. And the guys calling her on this did so very politely, so the bigot doesn't get bonus points for falsely citing Jesus in a nice tone.

    Being grateful of the progress toward overturning DOMA doesn't mean we have to take it when business owners hang out a no-gays-allowed sign in violation of the law.

    Posted by: Ernie | Mar 6, 2013 9:01:55 PM

  12. I wonder how she'd feel if her flower supplier suddenly refused to do business with her, because they don't want to support bigotry?

    Posted by: jexer | Mar 6, 2013 9:12:44 PM

  13. I get so sick of these idiots who claim that it's their "relationship with Jesus" that makes them bigots. Jesus never preached against homosexuality. He never stated that they couldn't get married in the eyes of God. Stop using Jesus as your excuse; you're just a bigot, plain and simple.

    Posted by: LiamB | Mar 6, 2013 9:24:39 PM

  14. This woman violates the Bible everyday; (1) By working, (2) By being an owner of a business who would oversee her employees, specifically men, (3) Not wearing clothing of one thread, etc., etc., etc. She cherry-picks the Bible to support her bigotry. What people [we] need to do, is when these thumpers come out, fight them back with their own transgressions. If we start cherry-picking the Bible back at them, they will have no avenue to retreat to, for they, themselves, are in violation of the source they use against others.

    Posted by: CB | Mar 6, 2013 9:26:55 PM

  15. Yet her "relationship" with the corpse of a man who may or may not have existed thousands of years ago...is (somehow) sanctioned? Mental illness. Period.

    Posted by: Geoff | Mar 6, 2013 9:32:57 PM

  16. She has a relationship with an imaginary person. I'd just back away slowly from the crazy lady.

    Posted by: daws | Mar 6, 2013 9:33:06 PM

  17. When my husband and I got married, we made sure all the vendors knew in advance that it was a same sex ceremony. If anyone had objected, we would have happily brought our business elsewhere. We didn't see s point in giving money to bigots, and lets face it: there's always another florist.

    Posted by: Clayton | Mar 6, 2013 9:38:13 PM

  18. I'm with Geoff. I'm an atheist but as someone who's married to a minister, I am bound to say that religion is not "all bad."

    But this right here is a great example of the "bad" that religion can bring. A terribly sad story.

    Posted by: Matt | Mar 6, 2013 9:39:35 PM

  19. You can't have a relationship with an imaginary friend. She needs to be on medication.

    Christians are such vile hypocrites. Just about every one of them. Of course she doesn't deny flowers to interfaith couples, to adulterers who want a bouquet for their mistress, to previously divorced people or any other one who committed one of the hundreds of made up "sins". Neither did anyone ask her to to "participate" in the wedding. So what she did is completely arbitrary.

    Posted by: Steve | Mar 6, 2013 9:45:00 PM

  20. That's my florist. No more business for you!

    Posted by: GeoffreyPS | Mar 6, 2013 9:47:35 PM

  21. Businesses reserve the right to refuse service. I'm sure they wouldn't have to look hard to find another florist that would be willing to accept their business. Go ahead and boycott and attempt to make trouble for this woman -- all that'll happen is her business experiencing a bump in sales from people who disagree with being harassed for her beliefs.

    Posted by: LCR Jay | Mar 6, 2013 9:57:21 PM

  22. I'd thenaskher for a refund for all of their previous purchases. Obviously, his money was good enough then... And, frankly, anyone that's actually read the Bible would know that Jesus would be the first to be down with the gays.

    Posted by: Tarc | Mar 6, 2013 10:07:20 PM

  23. I believe in Freedom of Association. However, I also believe in the courage of your convictions and would have no problem with a law which requires a business to post their exclusion policy on the front door or window in three inch letters.

    We reserve the right to refuse service to anyone.... and assert it against :

    Gay people
    and dwarves.

    Posted by: David Hearne | Mar 6, 2013 10:24:27 PM

  24. What kind of mother calls a child Baronelle?

    Posted by: Leroy Laflamme | Mar 6, 2013 10:25:43 PM

  25. What kind of mother calls a child Baronelle?

    Posted by: Leroy Laflamme | Mar 6, 2013 10:25:44 PM

  26. « | 1 2 3 4 »

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