Gay rights activists have called for a
boycott of Iowa baker Victoria Childress after she denied a wedding
cake to a lesbian couple.
Trina Vodraska and Janelle Sievers were
told by Childress, owner of Victoria's Cake Cottage in Des Moines,
that her religious convictions would not allow her to sell them a
wedding cake for their upcoming ceremony.
A Facebook page titled Boycott
Victoria's Cake Cottage – Des Moines has been “liked”
by nearly 500 people.
Chidress defended her decision to
refuse service to the couple during an interview with KCCI.
“I didn't do the cake because of my
convictions for their lifestyle,” Childress said. “It is my
right as a business owner. And it's not to discriminate against
“I was straight-forward with them and
explained that I'm a Christian and that I have very strong
convictions. I chose to be honest about it. They said they
appreciated it and left. That was all that was said.”
While religious organizations are
exempt from the state's discrimination laws – which were amended in
2007 to include sexual orientation – business owners are not.
The women refused to comment further on
the incident after their initial interviewer with KCCI, saying only
in a statement: “We are grateful for the outpouring of support we
have received and hope that by stepping forward we have prevented
someone else from experiencing the same type of bigotry.”