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Vermont couple who lost discrimination suit films anti-gay marriage ad in Maine

Monday, October 22, 2012

A Vermont couple who agreed to pay $30,000 to settle a discrimination lawsuit filed on behalf of a lesbian couple from New York who claimed that their Inn refused to host their wedding reception because they were a same-sex couple, appear in a new ad advocating against same-sex marriage in neighboring Maine.

Jim and Mary O’Reilly, owners of the Wildflower Inn in Lyndonville, Vt., were charged with violating the Vermont Fair Housing and Public Accommodations Act, which prohibits public accommodations from denying goods and services based on customers’ sexual orientation. The law applies to inns, restaurants, schools, stores, and any other business that serves the general public.

The couple, who say they are devout Catholics, could not “offer our services wholeheartedly to celebrate the marriage between same-sex couples because it goes against everything that we as Catholics believe in.”

They are now using the lawsuit and settlement as a warning to Maine voters to discourage them from support a marriage equality initiative on the November ballot:

Watch:

The couple said in the video that because of the lawsuit, they “can no longer host any weddings” at their Inn, when in fact, the Vermont statute only prohibits them from discriminating against gay couples. It was their decision to discontinue wedding services to avoid hosting gay and lesbian couples.

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Filed under: Maine, Vermont

22 more reader comments:

  1. booooo

    Posted on Monday, October 22, 2012 at 1:06pm
  2. They had to do something to pay for the lawsuit and the lawyer they used to try to get them out of it. Disgusting really.

    Posted on Monday, October 22, 2012 at 1:08pm
  3. Morons

    Posted on Monday, October 22, 2012 at 1:09pm
  4. This is America…..they can do that….But I do hope they have paid the fine and Court Cost first.

    Posted on Monday, October 22, 2012 at 1:09pm
  5. Boo fucking hoo it’s people like this that make we wish we could still throw them to the lions

    Posted on Monday, October 22, 2012 at 1:09pm
  6. This is where my libertarian ideas clash with my gay rights ideas. These people are clearly a couple of holier-than-thou-delusional-religious-hoopties, but at the same time, it’s their own business. The gay couple could have a wedding basically anywhere else.

    Posted on Monday, October 22, 2012 at 1:16pm
  7. Talk about poor sports…

    Posted on Monday, October 22, 2012 at 1:17pm
  8. Way to go to show your ignorance!

    Posted on Monday, October 22, 2012 at 1:18pm
  9. Bigots.

    Posted on Monday, October 22, 2012 at 1:22pm
  10. I like how the seemed to forget, the CHOSE not to host anymore weddings at their facility, they were not forced to stop. They damaged themselves no one else!!

    Posted on Monday, October 22, 2012 at 1:26pm
  11. The couple has rights of freedom of religion and freedom of speech, just as we all do. With freedoms like we have, we are sometimes very unpopular. But we have rights just the same.

    Posted on Monday, October 22, 2012 at 1:27pm
  12. I have a question as devoted Catholics wouldn’t they only support weddings that took place inside the church performed by a Catholic priest? If they were that devoted why would they host or support any wedding outside of the church?

    Posted on Monday, October 22, 2012 at 1:29pm
  13. Let haters pay for their hatred. They had to settle the law suit and they are no longer getting moneys from weddings. I am happy for their loss.

    Posted on Monday, October 22, 2012 at 1:36pm
  14. these people are simple HATERS…if NOT catholic you are NO good….insane thought considering the catholic church record on child abuse etc

    Posted on Monday, October 22, 2012 at 1:40pm
  15. Boo friggin’ hoo… maybe they should move somewhere where that kind of ignorance is accepted.

    Posted on Monday, October 22, 2012 at 1:40pm
  16. I do not feel bad for this couple who own the inn. Just because you have different beliefs, you still have to follow laws! You aren’t above them.

    Posted on Monday, October 22, 2012 at 1:43pm
  17. Religion does not trump laws. No matter what. That’s what America is about.

    Posted on Monday, October 22, 2012 at 1:54pm
  18. And this happened to how many people in Vermont or anywhere else? As they say, there’s always one ;-{P}

    Posted on Monday, October 22, 2012 at 2:54pm
  19. these people are disgusting pigs.

    Posted on Monday, October 22, 2012 at 3:00pm
  20. what they did was legal and was their right. legally, owners have a right to refuse businesses to anyone and freedom of religion. so enough with the bashing.

    Posted on Monday, October 22, 2012 at 6:22pm
  21. Natalie, it WASN’T legal. Thus the lawsuit.

    Posted on Monday, October 22, 2012 at 8:30pm
  22. *forheapalms*

    Posted on Tuesday, October 23, 2012 at 12:27am