|Sarah Huckabee Sanders|
And all because of an incident involving Trump's White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders.
According to CBS News:
A restaurant owner in Lexington, Virginia kicked Sarah Huckabee Sanders and her party out of his restaurant ... on moral grounds. White House press secretary Sarah Sanders was told to leave a Lexington, Va., restaurant Friday night, she said on Twitter Saturday morning. Sanders said the owner of the Red Hen in the Shenandoah Valley asked her to leave because she works for President Trump.
"Last night I was told by the owner of Red Hen in Lexington, VA to leave because I work for @POTUS and I politely left. Her actions say far more about her than about me. I always do my best to treat people, including those I disagree with, respectfully and will continue to do so," Sanders tweeted Saturday morning.
. . . Someone who claimed to be Sanders' server seemed to have posted earlier on social media about the incident. That post was tweeted out by Brennan Gilmore, the executive director of environmental group Clean Virginia. .
@PressSec got kicked out of the Red Hen restaurant in Lexington, Va tonight. Apparently the owner didn’t want to serve her and her party out of moral conviction. pic.twitter.com/jr3bfiY3XY — Brennan Gilmore (@brennanmgilmore) June 23, 2018
Personally, I don't agree with what was done to Sanders, but I am hard pressed to feel sorry for her. As many readers know, there is an idea being pushed in right-wing and conservative evangelical circles that business should have the religious or moral right to refuse potential customers; most specifically gay customers.
Anti-LGBTQ groups such as the Family Research Council and the Alliance Defending Freedom have been pushing hard in support of this idea, even propping up businesses owners whom they claim are the victims of an alleged rabid gay lobby attempting to either make them betray their religious beliefs or face financial ruin.
Recently one of their "client" won a judgement at SCOTUS. In the Masterpiece Cake Shop ruling, SCOTUS ruled for a baker who refused to create a cake for a gay couple. Even though the case was decided on very narrow grounds which did not even touch the argument of "religious liberty," those pushing the concept called it a win and began using it to further their case.
One wonders what they will say about this situation involving Huckabee Sanders. Maybe a better question is how she is feeling now. The Trump Administration supported the baker in the Masterpiece case and she made several statements affirming the belief that businesses have the right to use religious/moral grounds to refuse potential gay customers.
I doubt this incident or the possible embarrassment she felt because of it will allow her to empathize with gays who could face the same situation. And I also doubt that anti-LGBTQ groups will abandon their support of the belief.
But at the very least, they are all now aware that "religious liberty" can go both ways and they aren't exempt from the argument they are using on the LGBTQ community. Or its fall out.