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. @LCR Jay: Businesses in that particular state do not have an unconditional right to refuse service.

    A business can have a "no shirt, no shoes, no service" policy. It can not have a "no shirt, no shoes, no service unless you are a white, blond, smooth surfer dude with six-pack abs" policy.

    Posted by: Bill | Mar 6, 2013 10:31:56 PM

  2. She's a bigot.

    But I'd rather know now, before the flowers arrive, that she doesn't like gays marrying each other.

    That being said, boycott her till she begs the gays back. And I agree, for someone so against marriage equality, she sure puts out a gay, doesn't she?

    Posted by: Sean in Dallas | Mar 6, 2013 10:35:18 PM

  3. ...er, a gay vibe. She puts out a gay vibe, doesn't she?

    Posted by: Sean in Dallas | Mar 6, 2013 10:36:09 PM

  4. Sorry Will, but those days have ended. She deserves every single bit of backlash she gets. She needs to be sued. The extreme bigots need to learn their place and they'll only learn through lawsuits.

    There is nothing respectful and nice in doing something like this to someone. This is mean and disparaging. Incredibly crude. Bad actions have consequences.

    Posted by: Francis | Mar 6, 2013 11:12:36 PM

  5. It's important to realize that she probably believes in the Jesus her preacher tells her about, and confuses Jesus' message with other parts of the Bible. The formula is: Leviticus in Bible therefore Leviticus = Jesus. Paul wrote about Jesus therefore Paul's writings = Jesus' beliefs.

    We feel the pain of her rejection of these guys and holler at her in outrage but this anger will hurt us and not do a thing to change her beliefs or actions. I would hope that these guys get in touch with the Pride Foundation in Seattle and PFLAG in the Tri-Cities. They can come up with a plan to open up dialogue, with the power of a lawsuit, or a complaint to the AG's office, to provide a little "encouragement".

    Posted by: Dan B Seattle | Mar 6, 2013 11:18:32 PM

  6. Jesus was ok with her taking cash off the nice gay guys for yeeeaaars though right? I wish the version of jesus that this muppet spoke to would be a litlle more consistent.

    Posted by: MarcF | Mar 6, 2013 11:56:14 PM

  7. I've always said that women are more homophobic than men and are better at hiding it. Think of what women do with make-up. They are good at disguises.

    From female pop singers to female florists, they are very homophobic.

    Posted by: rise | Mar 7, 2013 12:00:25 AM

  8. @CB: Thats good advice. Ask the bible thumpers if we should stone to death all who work on the Sabbath, curse their parents, committ adultery etc. After all that is what the "Good" Book teaches.

    Posted by: andrew | Mar 7, 2013 12:52:19 AM

  9. I'm sure there are a few gay florists in the area that will GLADLY take that business anyway toots.

    Posted by: David | Mar 7, 2013 1:28:50 AM

  10. Jesus has a policy on flowers for gays ?

    My personal relationship with the local Leprechauns is more open and tolerant than this delusional loon's with Jesus.
    At least the Leprechauns would do a great floral tribute.

    Posted by: JackFknTwist | Mar 7, 2013 2:40:37 AM


    Posted by: Bob | Mar 7, 2013 2:44:18 AM

  12. So, she has relationship with Jesus. I hope he pays her bills when she loses all her customers for flaunting the law.

    Posted by: Liam SW | Mar 7, 2013 3:07:59 AM

  13. She needs to retire. Maybe in her spare time, she can finally discover what Jesus is all about...love. That's it. She's so full of hate, there is no possible way she can have room for Jesus in that hating heart of hers. No lady, you are way wrong. Jesus is about love. You do not have a relationship with Him, at least not a healthy one. Jesus would have provided flowers for a wedding, because weddings are about the celebration of love. Why is this so hard for some to see, especially when they claim to know Jesus?

    Posted by: millerbeach | Mar 7, 2013 3:27:19 AM

  14. Sorry honey, Jesus is just not that into you.

    Posted by: Jack M | Mar 7, 2013 8:10:30 AM

  15. Seriously... at the end of the day, it's flowers! Simply flowers sold to someone for whatever reason...

    Why would any sane, reasonable, business-conscious retailer give two sh*ts what happens to the flowers once they're sold or WHAT reason the flowers were purchased?

    Why invite such scorn of the public upon yourself?

    Clearly, this woman has issues much deeper than her religion.

    Posted by: johny | Mar 7, 2013 8:51:08 AM

  16. All of these stories of gay customers being turned away are offensive, but this one strikes me as being worse than usual. In most cases there is little or no previous relationship between the person seeking goods or services and the bakery/photographer/whatever. But in this case it was a "longtime customer" who assumed that, based on their longstanding association, this person would provide goods and services for an event that is more important to him than all the others.

    How upsetting to discover that a person with whom you thought you had a rapport, who respected you, all along thought of you as "lesser than," not equal or worthy. I think that's something all of us deal with in a way, not knowing if some of the people we deal with on a daily basis would happily vote against our rights.

    And all because she has "a relationship with Jesus"? No, actually, she doesn't. And I don't mean that in the atheist sense (though I'm not a believer), but what she believes she has a relationship with is the REPRESENTATION of "Jesus" as described by her sect or preacher. In a sense all deities are like mirrors, reflecting the values we invest in them, which are usually identical to our own. It could be Feed The Poor Jesus, Prosperity Jesus, Exclusive Jesus, Welcoming Jesus, or a thousand others. In that way its similar to Barbie dolls- you pick the one with accessories that appeal to you, not the other way around.

    Unfortunately, a dictum from computer programming too often applies, as in this case, Garbage In/Garbage Out.

    Posted by: Caliban | Mar 7, 2013 9:16:33 AM

  17. Are there fines in place for these well-documented acts of discrimination? I never hear about the florists and bakers and hoteliers who refuse to do weddings getting sanctioned in any way! A nice $50,000 fine would make me feel better about things, and would take out of the pockets of the owners what money they've made from their loyal gay customers over the years before they sprung the big denial on them. I'm sure their church and congregation would be happy to pony up the dough if the business couldn't afford it. That's what fellowship is all about, right?

    Posted by: Book | Mar 7, 2013 9:26:28 AM

  18. Courts look for precedence. There is, apparently, plenty of precedence for her having accepted this couple's money as long as it didn't offend her to do so.

    She's an idiot.

    The courts will find for the plaintiffs.

    Posted by: JoyZeeBoy | Mar 7, 2013 9:26:41 AM

  19. @Book
    Yes, there are fines if people go through with the complaint process. It has happened. For example to a B&B in Vermont.

    Posted by: Steve | Mar 7, 2013 9:45:48 AM

  20. "I have friends who are gay." Nice try c#nt! She had no problem taking money from the guy for 9 years but then, all of a sudden, she doensn't want to "participate" in their wedding. Who asked her to? They asked her to provide them with flowers. Something that she's done for 9 years.

    Posted by: Gigi | Mar 7, 2013 10:26:57 AM

  21. A good way to solve problems like this is to give people who work in these industries a decade to decide how they want to deal with the situation. Will they adapt in this time and be able to serve gays? If not, they have plenty of time to sell their business and enter/train for another profession. A decade is not as long as it seems. It's already been about a decade since gay marriage was ruled legal in Massachusets. And then this issue won't drag on for years and years the way social issues often do. And another obstacle has been removed from achieving gay equality.

    It's a compromise, but I think, a reasonable one. Very few people who went into these professions ever envisioned gay marriage becoming legal.

    Posted by: Mary | Mar 7, 2013 11:37:03 AM

  22. What a sad joke this behavior is. For years, his money was fine with her relationship with Jesus, and now she's lost her mind.

    Posted by: RexT | Mar 7, 2013 1:20:05 PM

  23. It's her business, and not the only business in town. Why is this drama queen lying awake fretting because some Christer cretin won't serve him? Take your business elsewhere and hope the silly old bat goes bust.

    Posted by: Steve | Mar 7, 2013 3:46:09 PM

  24. I sent her a Facebook message to the effect of "I wish you to lie awake every night thinking of the children you have helped to be called names, and not accept themselves, possibly kill themselves"

    Posted by: Bob | Mar 7, 2013 3:53:17 PM

  25. nothing in this world stinks worse than righteousness.

    Posted by: DannyEastVillage | Mar 7, 2013 5:58:30 PM

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