tv Jack Phillips The Cost of My Faith CSPAN July 4, 2021 12:00am-12:46am EDT
the cost of my case. 's lawyer is with us as well. welcome. >> just so my audiences aware why is your lawyer with us on this interview? >> we are still in court. we just finished the end of march our trial with our third lawsuit we are waiting for the judge to announce his decisions my lawyer is help to make sure i don't say anything. >> for those who don't remember the details, remind us what happened july 19, 2012 into game and walked into your cake shop and asked you to
design their wedding cake. >> sunny and bright a couple of girls working for me so when they sat down at the wedding desk so we made introductions said what can i do for you were here to look at wedding cakes i said sorry i don't do cakes for same-sex weddings. they said what i'll make a birthday or shower or cookies or brownies and not do cakes for same-sex wedding so they stomped out swearing at me and flipping me off i was not expecting that i was just said i wouldn't just do that cake because of the iconic nature
of the wedding cake. >> was that the first time for a gay person designed on - - asked you to design a wedding cake quick. >> know it was the fourth or fifth time we could always discuss it is not your sexual orientation that the message of the cake and it simply understood. >> and you talk about this in the book what other cakes would you not design? >> we had many discussions what it would look like we decided before reopened we wouldn't do cakes that celebrate halloween or racist or denigrate other people including people who identified as lgbt. we had guidelines we would not cross.
>> after charlie and david stormed out of your shop, you started getting basically legal notices where you found out they were suing you? >> right. i started to get hateful phone calls and e-mails within 20 minutes and the next morning a couple hundred e-mails that were all hateful. the phone was ringing all day long i'm not sure i think it was july through october. >> so when did you realize the legal troubles were getting serious? >> right away the two gentlemen came in on the thursday but the following tuesday four days later i had been connected with attorneys alliance defending freedom.
because adf have been right beside me all the way through to guide me and coach me and help with that relationship. >> many people have asked you why not just bake the cake? i feel a lot of christians today in our culture would look the other way or make a confession and say i don't want to get into a bunch of legal problems in trouble i will just make the cake it will not be a big deal and looked the other way. why didn't you just bake the cake quick. >> we knew there were a number of cakes we could not make we have to decline halloween
cakes so that was a good practice when the other cases came up this was a line in the sand and this is how we approach the line we did it as gracious and is kind as i could but didn't want to cross the line. >> . >> you talk about your decision to fight this in court and this is taken from your book let everyone be subject to the governing authorities there is none that which god has established those authorities that have been established and that is instituted and those that do so will bring judgment on themselves for whatever is owed to them if you owed taxes
and pay taxes if it's respect then respective honor then honor. so tell us how your decision that comports with roman 13 quick. >> the government gives us the option to go to court to defend these things we have a constitution the government is supposed to protect and among them are the right to free exercise and religion because i didn't want to create that message and also to freely express so government is to protect that right when they weren't there were steps in the state and u.s. constitution where we could
fight. >> and you see the rights of conscience on - - conscience defense what does that mean? >> that they are asking me to create message that is part of the speech that it creates a message in a cake and to me the wedding cake is an iconic symbol in a message and of itself if you walk into a conference room if you're there for a business meeting if you see a three-tiered cake in the corner you know without having to ask anybody it is a wedding. that is a message so to create that wedding cake and that is defined as between a man and a woman it is a message to go against our beliefs so asking me to violate my conscience to
create this cake. >> what is the distinction between freedom of religion because people confuse this and freedom of worship? >> the constitution says freedom of religion. so a lot freedom of worship is to be promoted of what you do in church freedom of religion is what you do in your life. in my case i want the government to protect my right when at the cake shop and the grocery store and the park not just in the halls of worship for any church. >> right. the colorado civil rights commission a panel of seven gubernatorial appointees ruled against you. then you chose to appeal to the colorado court of appeals.
what was the crux of your appeal? >> the same thing. the state was forcing me through the civil rights commission to create cakes that went against my conscience severe asking the court of appeals to reverse the decision and allowing me to create the cakes that are in line with my conscience. >> in the book you talk about that there is a double standard because there was another denver-based bakery who did something almost identical to what you did. but they were not persecuted in any way so tell us why that happened. >> a gentle man here in denver went to three different bakeries and asked them to create cakes shaped like a bible with a message on it with the red circle with the tax through it and it was a
message on the cake that homosexuality or homosexual marriage is wrong they asked the bakeries to create the cakes and they declined to do it because they disagreed with the message. that's exactly what we were doing they said they could end the lawsuit but we cannot create all cakes of the civil rights commission said they're not turning you away but the message but i do not have that right. >> the bizarre double standard. so then the commission says some very hateful things about you. and you mentioned that one of the most painful things about it was, talk about this a little bit. your dad was in world war ii and he was in book and felt
the concentration camp. so tell us what was so painful what the commission said about you. >> one of the commissioners it's recorded on tape that religious freedom is a despicable piece of rhetoric and people use it like slavery and the holocaust so she was saying me not not choosing to create at cake against the holocaust editions know what it is or ignoring the policies just on a basic level but my dad served in world war ii and landed in normandy. he fought through france and germany into the battle of the bulge and wounded in a mortar attack he has of heart and a
big scar across his back ascended to england to patch him up and then sent him back in and he liberated one of the concentration camps he spoke of the horrors of that and the smell. 's the pictures are horrific if you look at up in and for this commissioner to compare this decision to that was ludicrous. >> i have been there and it is very disturbing. so tell us what the outcome of that appeal. >> the court of appeals ruled three / nothing in the civil rights commission that the decision stands part of which i would need to retrain my staff and change all my policies and start creating cakes that go against my faith and retrain the staff and
report to the commission quarterly for two years and very training it's funny it is a very small shop my wife and i own it my daughter works for me and others including my mom who is in her eighties and she said by the way i will not be reeducated. thank you mom. i love you. [laughter] so for them to do that that is what the court of appeals initially came back and said the ruling now stands so now the next step was the colorado state supreme court. >> that sounds very much like a cultural revolution as a reeducation camp. so you talked about this before but the government was essentially ordering you to violate your conscience. was there ever a moment to the first or second tier where you were wavering and wondering if you should just give in and
just do what they said? >> no. i would close the shop down before we start creating cakes like that. that was never in question. the question was how far can we go? could adf take us to the next step? i learned the colorado state supreme court in the united states supreme court have discretion and what cases they taken the state decided to decline so there's only one option left and that would be to appeal to the native state supreme court we were willing to do that but was the court willing to hear a case? that was the question. >> the court was willing to hear your case hotel is the art of the us supreme court hearing your case. >> extremely small that you will be heard. they are petitioned between
eight and 10000 cases every year and they will only grant 70 or 80 and those cases normally like to circuit court's night and those that rule differently on two different things that is called a circuit split so they have to justify that they can be one thing in california and another in florida and has to be the same across the board so there are larger cases like that and my case we came from not a circuit or district court it was a stand-alone case. basically coming from the court of appeals we didn't even make it to the state supreme court so the odds were incredibly against us to have four justices agree to take the case of at least four have to go over every aspect to make sure it's worth their time and effort and the energy they would take to take the
case to court. we got that. >> what was it like when you found out you are going to the supreme court? were you feeling? >> it was one of the craziest days of my life. there is a website called scotus club and you can follow the cases that you want to that they are looking at i followed my case four months as it was relisted that means they had in front of them and talk about it we'll put off and put it off and talk about it so i knew it was being conferenced or talked about it every week and it was joined to the end of the session with a break for the summer i was watching on my computer and i had it turned on to find out if we were denied and it had been granted i saw masterpiece
cake shop has been granted it still gets me. is his five years ago and i still can't breathe. i had to text people the only one i had to talk to was a homeless man i turned to him and said i'm going to the supreme court and he looked at me he said i have to go to court on wednesday. [laughter] i said yeah but i don't need a parole officer but just to understand the gravity of the united states supreme court people said will sue you and take you to the supreme court so for them to grant that was incredible. >> did you mentioned the essential point to take it to the supreme court was about freedom of speech? >> we asked them to reverse
the case on speech and religious component. >> june 4th, 2018 you want at the supreme court seven / two ruling against ginsburg and sotomayor or were against it that was an amazing occasions what was that like when you want quick. >> that was just as emotional as the day we were granted even more surprised because it was three weeks before the end of the session i was pretty certain they wouldn't grant the decision until the last day. but i happened to be watching again and said we have masterpiece. looks like that you win seven / two i'm sitting at my computer. what just happened? immediately the phone starts
ringing people are driving by my shop they are honking and waving it is incredible. >> like david and goliath story it is amazing. and then you mention in the book, this is interesting what is one of the keys of winning the case according to the supreme court? why do they rule in your favor quick. >> was the hostility of the commissioner comparing my case to the holocaust. they said it's impermissible are still a declarant impermissible and the other component was the inequity that the commission would come after me for my case but leave the other three bakeries for their denials against their conscience so that was the two key to the whole decision. >> you mention the commission's or the free exercise clause?
what does that mean. >> congress shall pass no law establishing religion for free exercise to be set up so in essence they said you can have your religion and do whatever you want you just cannot exercise it in your cake shop just only in your church so they said i cannot exercise my faith and they were open on - - overly hostile to that. >> and then you have three weeks of calm and normalcy again. but then suddenly you are right back where you started because a local denver attorney a transgender attorney named autumn walked into your cake shop and ended up filing charges against you. what was that like? >> so with the timeline the
attorney called us my average day i would take 25 or 30 phone calls. and then the attorney called us and requested another cake so it's blue on the outside pink on the inside to celebrate the gender transition from man to a woman so we said we will create any other cake another custom work for you but i cannot create that cake so now fast-forward three weeks after the court ruled in our favor then we got notice the civil rights commission had taken of the
complaint the attorney filed one year before there was probable cause to pursue an almost identical case. >> that is what i don't get. you talk about it in the book but i cannot process in my brain if the supreme court ruled in your favor how does this happen again? >> i'm not sure how good of an analogy this is but if i were speeding down my street and i get a ticket and go to court and be the, now they say i'm speeding down the street again i'm getting i ran a red light i cannot say that i didn't get a speeding ticket last year now you have a new one. so they were similar and identical in nature but two separate charges so the court's duty is to file a complaint as if there is probable cause. the commission is appointed by the governor they decided they
had probable cause to pursue the case. >> how did that first case with autumn and? >> two years ago in march we were ready to go into the deposition and as we sat down at the conference table as the attorney does tries to destroy me over the next six hours they say we have a meeting and then to say this is in the vehicle we don't want to use we are willing to drop the charges so they dropped the suit after the same commission said they embrace the hostility of the first commission so if they were to
go forward they would not be successful and they knew they would lose so they would rather drop the case families. >> but it still not over because june 5th, 2019 autumn files a new case against you. i don't know how much you can talk about it but why did that happen? and where are you in that case? >> this attorney had the option to appeal the decision to dismiss the case but rather than appeal that waited the time period over 90 days and then file a civil lawsuit now it's not the state that the attorney personally and just the past march a few weeks ago, we were in court and the judge was in his chambers in denver and i was in scottsdale. we were put on the witness
stand so we had the trial the cross examination and now we are waiting for the judge to announce that decision. >> and how soon will you know quick. >> it could be this afternoon or next week or july. we are just waiting. >> in the meantime are you still able to create custom cakes? >> we are. we just decided we will not do wedding or anniversary cakes in that field and tell this is resolved and there are practical reasons for that as well emotional reasons as well but until those are resolve this is the biggest time of year with birthday and shower in graduation cakes we do those all of the time. >> you mentioned in the bible
and in exile in babylon that you mention how do you draw inspiration? >> in the home village in jerusalem the whole nation where carried out to babylon. they were slaves and had to do banking nebuchadnezzar was a wicked and ruthless man if you'd didn't do exactly what he wanted you were dead. it could be a gruesome death but they were willing to stand and do what god wanted them to do and then to obey and honor the lord god general.
>> they refused to bow down to culture. they were willing to go into a fiery furnace rather than compromise their convictions like you. >> they also said our god is able to do this but if not we will still obey him we are going to the courts and if we win great and if not will still do our best to obey him. >> and you also talk on a personal level how they cake shop over the years brought you and your father closer together because when you were young you are not that close with him and there was a distant. but they cake shop brought you closer. how did that happen? >> i didn't play baseball but he would take me fishing that
he had a job to do and i had friends we just didn't have the opportunity to be really close i love him and he loved me back when we opened the shop i was nervous to tell him i was going to go into business for myself because he was a meat cutter and hated working with the public and said i don't care what you do for a living just at work with the public. so i thought how will i tell my dad not only with the public? so when i told him he said that's great. when and where? he came in the very first day we've been here every day since then.
that then my dad came down and help me to the remodel we opened it 93 and he passed away in 1996 so those three years were valuable to me because he would come in every day with muffins and coffee and the guy he said never work with the public. >> and how is all of this drama over the last nine years? how has this been on your family? >> it's been good in bringing us closer together. . . . .
it talks about 10 who were going to a wedding feast and it happens in the middle of the night in a culture or whatever. all 10 of them wake up in five of them are preparing for the wedding ceremony and five of them are not. that is terrible but in my mind and it spoke to me that i was asleep to. all 10 of them were asleep and five of them were prepared and until that day came and i talked this over with my daughter and she said the same thing. she had a wake-up call and this whole thing is changed her.
she was a follower of jesus before that and now she's a dedicated follower. >> this is an interesting fact doit from your book. how did you come up with the name masterpiece? >> i graduated high school and i needed a job and across the street from it was a large hotel bakery with 100 employees. they were gracious enough to hire me and it took a while to get acclimated to working. but after i got acclimated to that i thought this is a job i can do long-term and later on i opened my own bakery and then one day i found out the bakery had bought out another bakery and they had broadband cake decorators and i've never seen a
so instead of two people making one custom cake at a time we have an artistic background we go through and i knew at that point that's what i was going to do with my future. i was going to open my own bakery someday and it would give bakery where i would use a campus in a the cake and hopefully turned it into aarp to help -- art to help people celebrate. i'm not generally that creative with physical media sculpting and painting in those kinds of things but the name came to me right away masterpiece cake shop and i'd can walk in there and get a loaf of rogue red or a piece of pie and part of the masterpiece also in my mind master the first syllable reminds me jesus on the mt. that
no man can serve two masters. whom i going to serve today and to this day i see master i see that word and it's a we want to live my life and run my shop and honor jesus christ. >> that's a great name. you mentioned in the book that part of the reason you did all this fighting and you fought in court part of it is for future generations. what do you mean by back? >> when i was approached with the idea i wanted to put down writing a story on the details of what happened especially for my kids. my three kids and a son and california and another dr. in california.
i wanted my grandkids to be able to have an account. i wanted them to have mine. i realized for five years ago this is not jack phillips who believes he can start making kid -- cakes again produces for every american who works for their conscience. they may not value -- and they would wonder what happened to them. >> the last chapter of your book is called lessons learned hand what was one of the most important things you learn through all of this?
>> that's one of the most important things that this is not about me, this is about everybody but one a most important things for me is that i need to remember who the master isn't who i serve every day everyday of my life whether i'm working or mowing my yard. god is in control over everything. >> i know the answer to this question but i'm just going to ask knowing all that you know now and all you've gone through in the last almost nine years would you still make the same decision back in 2012? >> absolutely. knowing this was ahead of me i would have said everything i said word for word. i wish i had more time but what i said to them i can't create
every cake the people asked me to create and i would be more than willing to fight for this for their sake my sake and my kids sake. >> what is it like because you mentioned this in the book reviewer known as the guy who wouldn't bake the cake. what is it like to have that title? >> has wish it was the guy who wouldn't take the cake but the guy who would serve -- but it is what it is and people sometimes recognize me when i'm out in public in a say hey you are that guy and it gives me the opportunity not only to explain the case but quite often to share my faith. >> guys i highly recommend this book but the book is "the cost of my faith" how a decision in my cake shop took me to the supreme court. it's jack phillips and jack i
thank you so much for being on the show and it's so encouraging. i really recommend this book because it's so encouraging. i think it will edify people's faith as you said you did your faith in your experience and your daughter's faith and i think it will encourage people and i think it will help people strengthen their own convictions about certain issues of the christian faith and so so god bless you. you are a trooper and thank you for being on the show and i'm excited and i look forward to hearing the outcome of this latest case. >> thank you mr. cook. it was such an honor to be on the show today. >> thank you jonathan. >> thanks so much. have a great day guys. >> you too.
>> i started actually writing this book about a year before covid-19 began in one of the points of the book is what's happening with covid-19 is not the extraordinary event that many claim it is but rather the culminating event of a lot of unraveling that's been happening over the last few years and it kind of chronicles i do want to say total collapse but partial unraveling of global health infrastructure nova things we have put in place which includes a lot of vaccine diplomacy and
by vaccine diplomacy i define it broadly as corporation between nations around global health but reticulated vaccines because vaccines are such powerful tools in global health and the beginning of it is the beginning of vaccine so what when edward jenner developed the first smallpox vaccine back in the late 1700's some say 1798 he immediately was called upon to do prisoner exchanges between the british and the french during the napoleonic wars and thomas jefferson used his vaccine as a goodwill gesture to send a vaccine to the lewis and clarke expedition in their exploration of the wilderness of the state of american groups and the more modern version began with albert's statement who not many realize when he -- the
polio vaccine he sent his strains to the ussr got permission from the -- his son works at fda and the present colic that permission to work together and that's where the vaccine was developed and soviet schoolchildren showed it was safe and effective them ultimately the licensure of the polio vaccine. the soviets found a way to scale up free production of the smallpox vaccine which allows you to take the version into tropical areas that would be destroyed by heat and that's what americans believe the eradication campaign so the point is are some greater success in global health around infectious diseases always relied on international cooperation and cooperation between countries which
generally did not agree ideological and they were willing to put aside their ideologies to work together and this is something that i was so impressed with as a vaccine scientists over the years. how can we does this off and give it a fresh coat of paint and reinvigorated. a very difficult time in the middle east when they occupation was starting when we were at the height of the syrian conflict and civil wars when a proxy wars between iran and saudi arabia were beginning in yemen so it was a very awful time looking at how we can cooperate between muslim majority nations for vaccine development and i've made some progress but the point is i think this is the time when we need it more than ever and we
can talk about what we are we are seeing now unraveling with what rush is doing and what china is doing to some extent and now life is complicated enough with this aggressive anti-science information campaign which is homegrown in the united states and launched by russia so how do we walk all of this back and restore vaccine diplomacy to its rightful place. >> you can find the rest of this program on our web site of tv.org. search for peter haut says her the title of this book preventing the next pandemic. use the search box at the top of the page.
best-selling author tamika has appeared on booktv several times back about her but that today we want to learn about her book club. tamika what inspired you to start a book club? >> i'm happy to talk about this because it was a very natural process. iowa in an informal way have been recommending books to friends for years. i will read something and my taste is pretty broad and i respond to word-of-mouth or review