A Washington state florist has refused
to supply flowers for the wedding of a gay couple.
According to CBS affiliate KEPR,
Barronelle Stuzman, the owner of Arlene's
Flower Shop in Richland, refused to provide flowers for the
wedding of Robert Ingersoll and his partner, Curt.
“He said he decided to get married,
and before he got through I grabbed his hand and said, 'I am sorry.
I can't do your wedding because of my relationship with Jesus
Christ,'” Stuzman said.
“We hugged each other and he left,
and I assumed that was the end of the story.”
However, Ingersoll took his story
online, where it went viral.
“It hit Facebook and it exploded,”
said Stuzman, a 37-year veteran of the flower business.
Ingersoll told NBC
affiliate KNDU that he was shocked by Stuzman's refusal, saying
the couple had patronized the shop for nearly a decade.
“It came as a shock to me because
I've had a nine year relationship with Barronelle and have never
thought there was a reason that she wouldn't …,” an emotional
Stuzman insisted she is not anti-gay:
“We hire gay people. I have friends that are gay, that wasn't the
issue. The issue is that I just didn't want to participate in the