ADF Senior Legal Counsel Jim Campbell, ADF-allied attorney Bryan Beauman
Available for media interviews following hearing in Hands On Originals v. Lexington-Fayette Urban County Human Rights Commission
Friday, March 13, immediately after hearing which begins at 2:30 p.m. EST
Fayette County Circuit Court, 120 N. Limestone St., Lexington
LEXINGTON, Ky. – Alliance Defending Freedom attorneys representing a Lexington-area printer will be available for media interviews Friday following oral arguments in state court. The Lexington-Fayette Urban County Human Rights Commission is forcing Blaine Adamson of Hands On Originals to print messages that conflict with his religious beliefs, so ADF attorneys asked the Fayette County Circuit Court to weigh in.
“Every American should be free to live and work according to their faith without fear of punishment by the government,” said Campbell, who will argue before the court. “Our government was formed to be freedom’s greatest protector, not its greatest threat. But in Blaine’s case, the government is coming after both his freedom and his ability to make a living.”
In December 2014, ADF appealed an order from the commission which erroneously concluded that Adamson violated a local ordinance prohibiting discrimination when he declined to print expressive shirts promoting the Lexington Pride Festival, hosted by the Gay and Lesbian Services Organization. The commission reached its decision even though Adamson regularly does business with and employs people who identify as homosexual.
The commission’s ruling has the potential to affect all Lexington-area printers regardless of their views, as a GLSO representative admitted at a hearing last year.
Adamson declined to print the shirts because he did not want to convey the messages that would be printed on them. He nevertheless offered to connect the organization to another printer that would produce the shirts for the same price. Unsatisfied, the GLSO filed a complaint with the commission.
“Americans oppose unjust laws that strong-arm citizens to express ideas against their will,” added co-counsel Beauman with Sturgill, Turner, Barker & Moloney, PLLC, of Lexington. “Blaine should not be forced to print messages with which he sincerely disagrees, and neither should any other printer. Americans should tolerate a diversity of opinions, not use the government to punish fellow citizens who have different views.”