And now, a tale of pain and suffering. Joanna Duka and Breanna Koski, owners of Brush & Nib calligraphy studio in Phoenix, have been told by Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Karen Mullins that it is not within their rights to refuse to write fancy letters for queers, just because Duka and Koski believe Jesus says queers are EW YUCK. You see, Phoenix has a city ordinance that says business owners, even Jesus-Loving Calligraphy Bigots, are not allowed to discriminate against the homosexuals:

On Monday, Judge Karen Mullins rejected the artists’ claim that being required to serve same-sex couples violated their freedoms of speech and religion. She denied them a preliminary injunction as the case proceeds, sending a not-so-subtle hint that their pro-discrimination claims aren’t going to get very far.

“Plaintiffs confuse conduct with expressive speech,” she wrote. “The ordinance only precludes Plaintiffs from refusing to sell products or provide services to same-sex couples and from stating that same-sex couples are unwelcome as customers.”

But what about their Sincerely Held Religious Beliefs? Don't those count?

Mullins was ... unimpressed by the argument that designing such wedding invitations would violate the artists’ religious beliefs. They had admitted that they would sell any premade non-custom product to anyone; it was only a conflict if they had to print two male names or two female names. “The printing of names does not hinder in any way Plaintiffs independent exercise of its religious belief by attending the church of their choice, engaging in religious activities or functions, and expressing their beliefs on their business website and literature or in their personal lives,” Mullins wrote. Duka and Koski “failed to assert even an incidental burden on the exercise of their religion.”

Just like that mean federal judge said to Kentucky clerk Kim Davis, when she was arguing that issuing marriage licenses AT HER GOVERNMENT JOB was a burden on her freedom of religion. That judge said (we paraphrase) that Davis was free to go to church and believe whatever the hell she wants -- she just couldn't discriminate AT HER JOB. Same goes for these women and whatever ugly Comic Sans letter-writin' they do, for their business.

What pain and suffering have these women experienced? Did their hands break while they were trying to write "Happy buttfuckin'!" in fancy-writin' style for Kevin and Dale, who met on Grindr?

No, actually not, though they are free to copy that from Wonket if they need to. These women actually have never outright refused service to anyone -- oh, they've gotten a couple of inquiries from Homogaywad-Americans, but they didn't respond. They just wanted to be granted a Special Right to discriminate, that's all. They want to be able to put a thingie on their website that says they run a Christian business and God Hates Fags or whatever. God, people like this are fucking tiresome.

[wonkbar]<a href=""></a>[/wonkbar]We've written about whining special snowflake conservatives like this ONE MILLION TIMES. It is so very 2015, when every baker, pizza-maker and porn fluffer who had accepted Republican Jesus as their personal lord and savior was making beaucoups bigot bucks from GoFundMe-type things, because they had been "discriminated against" by gays who just wanted to be treated like any other couple about to walk down the aisle.

None of these wedding services people are being asked to participate in ceremonies that go against their beliefs, despite their Oh-So-Sad protests about how squirting some frosting on top of a cake is their divinely inspired artistic expression. It is not an expression of these two women's walk with the Lord if they get paid money to get out their fancy nancy pens and write "Carol and Barb request your presence at their wedding."

It's not part of their regular worship and prayer life if they have to do an invitation that says Blake and Tchad request your presence as they destroy traditional Christian marriage forever, which IS NOT A THING GAY WEDDING INVITATIONS ACTUALLY SAY:

So can we just STFU about this now? Please?

Calligraphy writers. PFFFFFFFFFFFT! Fuck off.

[Think Progress / Judge Mullins's decision]

Evan Hurst

Evan Hurst is the senior editor of Wonkette, which means he is the boss of you, unless you are Rebecca, who is boss of him. His dog Lula is judging you right now.

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Image: Marriott Hotels

Great GOP wordsmith Frank Luntz, the guy who gave us the "death tax" and who urged the George W. Bush administration to talk about "climate change" since it was less politically motivating than "global warming," did some more of his characteristic word magic today! While staying at the Hotel Imperial in Vienna, Austria, Luntz offered this cautionary tale about the evils of socialism, as illustrated by the shoddy conditions in a 5-star luxury hotel owned by Dubai's "Al Habtoor" conglomerate and operated by Marriott:

Talk about your grim hellholes! Apparently, there's only one elevator in the entire building, and it's been broken for three days, proving that European-style socialism is a failure that should never be imported to the USA, where -- damn it! -- all buildings work!

As some smartass pointed out, now Luntz may have to take the STAIRS, like a common Bolshevik!

We're still trying to get our heads around how a delay in getting an elevator fixed in a luxury hotel owned by the United Arab Emirati proprietors of Dubai's

  • Habtoor Grand Resort
  • Waldorf Astoria Dubai Palm Jumeirah
  • Habtoor Palace, LXR Hotels & Resorts
  • V Hotel, Curio Collection by Hilton
  • Hilton Dubai Al Habtoor City
  • Metropolitan Hotel Dubai
  • Al Habtoor Polo Resort

as well as

  • Imperial Hotel, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Vienna (Austria)
  • Hilton London Wembley (United Kingdom)
  • Hilton Beirut Habtoor Grand (Lebanon)
  • Hilton Beirut Metropolitan Palace (Lebanon)
  • President Abraham Lincoln Springfield – a DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel (United States)
  • InterContinental Budapest (Hungary)
  • The Ritz-Carlton, Budapest (Hungary)

is an example of the horrors of socialism, but then, we don't earn the big bucks like Luntz does. Austria is among the 14 richest countries in the world, so we're fairly certain it's not a commie hellhole. Then again, there is a very strong social safety net, so maybe people in subsidized housing stole all the elevator parts. Or perhaps the elevator would have been fixed sooner if only Austria didn't have such strong unions. It's a mystery.

Or maybe it's that NATIONAL socialism that's the problem, seeing as it has socialism RIGHT IN THE NAME!

Adolf Hitler, once a day labourer outside the Hotel Imperial Vienna, returned as the Führer and "delivered a speech to a rapturous crowd from [the hotel] suite's balcony, on 14 March 1938", according to

We suppose it's worth noting that the Imperial is decidedly not owned or operated by the Austrian government, where a far-Right coalition has recently imploded -- although maybe Luntz is confused about that, since official state guests are traditionally housed there. In any case, the elevator's busted, it's in Europe, Europe is socialist, and Frank Luntz is homesick for America, where no elevator ever goes unrepaired for an entire weekend. It simply has never happened because of our efficient free market!

Still, Luntz's tweet inspired some valuable reflections on how economic theory shapes the reality of everyday life. This is the kind of Austrian economics we can support.

In conclusion, capitalism always allocates resources efficiently and fairly, although that still doesn't explain why Frank Luntz has a job. And now it would be your DOKTOR ZOOM'S BIRTHDAY PARTY OPEN THREAD, if only the socialists would fix the elevator, the end.

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