The headline is reminiscent of a hypothetical question that drew attention at the Libertarian Party’s presidential debate earlier this year: Must a Jewish baker make a Nazi cake?
In this case, however, the question is not hypothetical. Via KSLA News out of Louisiana:
A Facebook post shared by a Bossier Parish teen is getting a lot of attention.
It reads, "Just left Albertsons. The woman behind the cake counter just refused to make me a birthday cake because I wanted Trump 2016 on it. Did that really just happen."
The cake is for the Benton girl's 18th birthday party, and the post has been shared now more than 150 times.
"I was just venting on Facebook when I made the status that I made, I didn't think I was going to get as much attention as it did," explained 17-year-old, McKenzie Gill. ...
"We just need an American flag cake with Trump 2016 on it, and right when I said Trump the lady just (makes face) kinda Trump? And she was like I can make you a flag cake but I'm not going to write Trump on it," explained Gill.
What happened next? The store acted quickly. An apology to Gill was issued, KSLA reports, and owners agreed to make the cake.
But what if the store had not reacted in such a way? Last year, an Oregon couple was ordered to pay $135,000 in damages after refusing to bake a cake for a lesbian couple’s wedding.
The issue touches on a fundamental democratic principle: the freedom to associate (or to note associate).
So, must a liberal baker make a ‘Trump 2016’ cake? Must a Christian baker make a cake for a lesbian wedding? Must a Jewish baker make a Nazi cake?
Jeffrey Tucker, economics writer of the Austrian School and a Distinguished Fellow of the Foundation for Economic Education, answered no (at least to the last question):
The real danger is not human choice but a regime that overrides it. The market is rooted in choice, which also means the right to discriminate. But so long as the state stays out of it, the discriminatory intent can’t last.
The freedom to choose implies the freedom to decline any particular choice on any grounds….
As for the Nazis, they will just have to find someone else to bake their cakes.
Trump supporters too, it would seem.
What do you think: Is compelling people to associate in business on penalty of fines sound governing principle?