Wear the Jersey or not, to bake the cake or not. In a free society these choices must remain with the individual.  To be forced down one road another is authoritarianism, and the route we most definitely do not want to take.

“Note that neither Phillips nor Provorov is going out and preaching hatred or violence against homosexuals or transgender men and women. They are simply asking not to be required to affirm a particular point of view. That refusal is, per our official civil rights enforcement ideology, itself a form of bigotry and discrimination. But that is not the only way to see it.

There are, of course, genuine bigots in America. And many want to make that the issue because it simplifies things. But there is a deeper issue. How can America accommodate the diversity of moral opinions we currently have? In light of that question, we see that we have two warring views of respect for diversity and of toleration. The first is supported by the legal enforcement bureaucracy, as in the Jack Phillips cases, and is reflected in the criticism of Provorov. That view holds that to be tolerant is to give explicit support to particular points of view

Provorov did not explicitly criticize gay pride. On the contrary, his claim was that he is an Orthodox Christian, and as such, he cannot in good conscience actively support homosexuality because his religion teaches that it is sinful. He does not seek to keep gay players out of the NHL, nor has he, as far as I know, made it a point to preach his beliefs to others. He merely asks not to be required to praise something with which he disagrees. The same is true of Jack Phillips. He makes specialty cakes. He is willing to provide a cake for anyone. But he refuses to make a specialty cake with a particular message that celebrates something contrary to his beliefs.

In other words, Phillips and Provorov, and their supporters, are embracing a rival understanding of toleration—namely, that it is a practice, not a particular belief. To be tolerant reflects the classic idea of magnanimity, embracing what used to be called “liberality,” and accepting the notion that there are different ways of living well, and that a free society must give people space truly to live as their consciences dictate. Such liberality requires that civil society provide space for people to live separately in some regard, including in a private business.

In former ages, that sort of toleration applied particularly to America’s diverse religious sects. In a world in which many Protestants regarded the Pope as the Anti-Christ, religious liberty meant allowing America’s many religious communities the space they needed to live freely, even if they hated each other. It did not require, as the British King had required, one affirms Anglican doctrine to be a full citizen, nor did it require, as the King of France had required, one to be a Catholic. Instead, America merely required that a citizen respect the laws of the community—laws that gave us space to disagree about some very fundamental things. That allowed us to put the wars of the Reformation in the rearview mirror. In short, religious liberty and religious diversity allowed America to practice safe sects.”

The activist left seems to have forgotten the notions of liberty and actual diversity as they attempt to ‘reform’ society in their risible utopian cast.  Their vision potentially spawns only strife and adversity.  There is no “live and let live”, but rather “you will live how I see fit, or we have a problem (bigot/phobe)…”

Authoritarianism from the Right or Left is the bugbear in the room.  Know it when you see it and fight against the totalitarian impulse the informs so much what passes for ‘social justice activism’ these days.