Farmer blocked at market over gay marriage seeks court order

Posted at 7:35 PM, Jul 17, 2017
and last updated 2017-07-17 19:35:07-04

EAST LANSING, Mich. (AP) — A Michigan city is defending a decision to keep an apple grower away from its outdoor market because of his views on gay marriage.

East Lansing urged a judge Monday to reject an injunction that would force the city to bring Stephen Tennes back to the market.

Tennes has said he won’t allow gay couples to get married at his Eaton County farm, which is a popular place for weddings. In response, East Lansing didn’t invite him to sell fruit this year.

East Lansing says vendors must follow its civil rights ordinance, which bars discrimination. Tennes filed a lawsuit in May, saying his rights to free speech and religion are being violated.

In a court filing, East Lansing says it’s responding to Tennes’ conduct, not his speech.