Here We Go: Christian Photographer Fights Law That Could Force Her to Promote Same-Sex Weddings

Chelsey Nelson

A Christian wedding photographer filed a suit last week against a Louisville, Ky., ordinance that would force her to photograph same-sex weddings and that even prevents her from posting her religious beliefs on her website.

Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) filed the suit in federal court on behalf of Chelsey Nelson, who owns a studio, Chelsey Nelson Photography, that specializes in photographing, editing and blogging about weddings.

The Louisville ordinance makes it unlawful “for a person to deny an individual the full and equal enjoyment of the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, and accommodations of a place of public accommodation, … on the ground of … sexual orientation,” according to the suit.

The lawsuit says the Louisville ordinance violates the First Amendment’s guarantee of freedom of speech and free exercise of religion, as well as the Fourteenth Amendment’s guarantee of due process. The suit also says the ordinance violates the First Amendment’s establishment clause because it would force her to participate “in religious exercises” that aren’t consistent with her beliefs. Further, the suit says the law violates the Kentucky Religious Freedom Restoration Act.

Nelson is a Christian whose religious beliefs “shape her business, her art, and her creativity,” the suit says.

“Chelsey believes that God designed marriage as a gift to people of all faiths, races, and backgrounds and that God ordained marriage to be a covenant between one man and one woman,” the suit says. “Chelsey’s views on marriage come from her personal interpretation of the Bible and the denominational teachings of the Southern Baptist Convention and her church.”

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Source: Christian Headlines