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International – Gay t-shirt court ruling

July 2017

A Christian printer who declined to make shirts for a US gay pride event has won his court case. According to the Christian Institute, American Blaine Adamson was sued after turning down the order, because it promoted a message that conflicted with his ‘sincerely held Christian beliefs’.

In 2012, Mr Adamson declined to take the order at his ‘Hands On Originals’ firm. Indeed, some lesbian owners of another t-shirt company backed his decision.  Company owners Kathy Trautvetter said it struck a chord, while Diane DiGeloromo stated, ‘No one really should be forced to do something against what they believe in, it’s as simple as that’.

However, he was taken through the courts. But, in May 2017, an appeals court in Kentucky found in favour of the Christian designer. One judge stated there was no evidence Mr Adamson had turned down any work because of a customer’s sexual orientation.

Alliance Defending Freedom represented Mr Adamson, and welcomed the decision. Spokesman Jim Campbell said, ‘Americans should always have the freedom to believe, the freedom to express those beliefs, and the freedom to not express ideas that would violate their conscience’.

He added that the decision was ‘a victory for printers and other creative professionals, who serve all people, but cannot promote all messages’.