“Individuals can avoid any discomfort by simply choosing another vendor.”
OK — let’s set up a hypothetical small town. The market for bakeries in this town is such that there’s room for five bakeries who provide wedding cakes.
And let’s say there are two couples in this town who are excitedly planning their weddings — one opposite sex couple, and one same sex couple.
The opposite sex couple shops for their wedding cake among all five bakeries, and they make their selection according to which one gives them the best combination of quality and price.
The same sex couple tries to shop for their wedding cake among all five bakeries, but three of these bakeries refuse to provide ANY cake for them — not even a cake out of their catalog of cakes they would provide for anyone else — because of their “religious freedom” to discriminate against same sex couples. Therefore, the same sex couple has only two bakers to choose from, and must make their decision based on the best combination of quality and price from only these two.
The same sex couple is denied the same shopping options as the opposite sex couple. Is this fair? It would seem that if the town can support only five bakeries, as more would create a market glut that would hurt all bakers, the discriminating ones should find another line of work, so that bakers who don’t discriminate can take their place in the market. And then everyone would have the same shopping options.
“Simply choose another vendor” is just another way of saying, “some people don’t deserve the same shopping options as other people”.
Let me ask you this — would you support a business’s right to discriminate against a customer based on race?