Court rules in favor of Christian photographer

MADISON, Wis. — Christian photographers in Wisconsin can’t be legally forced to photograph weddings of same-sex couples, according to an Aug. 1 court ruling.

The Dane County Circuit Court stated that Christian photographer Amy Lawson is exempt from city and state laws that threatened to fine her heavily if she didn’t take pictures of a same-sex wedding, according to The Christian Post. Lawson’s troubles began in 2016 when she posted a statement on her blog saying she would not photograph same-sex weddings because of her Christian beliefs. After getting backlash over the statement, she realized that lawsuits were a possibility and decided to be proactive in filing a challenge to the laws.

The Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), the Christian legal group that represented Lawson, said the court has not officially issued a preliminary injunction but is expected to do so soon. The court’s reasoning for the decision was that Lawson didn’t have a physical storefront and that the laws in question would impact her “artistic freedom,” according to the Post.

“The court’s announcement has important implications for everyone in Wisconsin who values artistic freedom,” ADF senior counsel Jonathan Scruggs said in a statement. “It means that government officials must allow creative professionals without storefronts … the freedom to make their own decisions about which ideas they will use their artistic expression to promote.” (TAB)