Sep 14, 2017Michigan grower gets day in court over farm market exclusion
Arguments at the intersection of religious beliefs, sexual orientation and discrimination played out in a Kalamazoo, Michigan, courtroom Wednesday, Sept. 13 in a federal lawsuit central Michigan fruit grower Steve Tennes has filed against the city of East Lansing.
To Steve Tennes, past president of the Michigan State Horticultural Society, his opposition to same-sex marriage and right to decide who can hold wedding on his orchard should have no bearing on where he can sell his fruit.
To East Lansing city officials, it’s their right to ban a person who discriminates from doing business at the city’s farmers market.
According to media outlet Mlive.com:
“Kate Anderson, an attorney for Alliance Defending Freedom, which is representing Tennes, said her client was targeted by the city and excluded from its farmers’ market in 2017 after posting his personal Catholic beliefs about same-sex marriage on Facebook.
Tennes’ attorneys filed a motion for a preliminary injunction in June that, if granted, could allow Tennes to return to the city’s farmers’ market before the season ends in late October.
The city of East Lansing, in return, has asked U.S. District Court Judge Paul Maloney to dismiss the case.”
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