BLOOMSBURG, Penn. (ChurchMilitant.com) - A Pennsylvania bridal shop is refusing to submit to gay activists' bullying, closing the shop rather than going against the Christian faith.
Seven people will be out of work after Victoria Miller and her family close their boutique on March 30, after four years of threats and intimidation by gay militants and LGBT supporters. The W.W. Bridal Boutique in Bloomsburg has been the target of hundreds of hateful emails and phone calls since 2014 when they turned away a lesbian couple shopping for dresses for their wedding.
In July 2017, after the store politely refused to help Shannon Kennedy and Julie Ann Samanas with wedding gowns for their same-sex wedding, the amount of harassment ramped up. "Kennedy and Samanas said they recalled hearing about that incident but didn't realize it was the same shop," Philadelphia Gay News (PGN) reported.
Church Militant spoke with Carla D'Addesi, founder of Defend My Privacy and friends with the shop owners. The owners themselves are no longer offering public comment.
D'Addesi was contacted by Miller, who asked her to publish a video explaining their story because she didn't want to speak publicly about the harassment at this time.
Kennedy, one of the lesbians, claims an employee asked if the dress was for a same-sex wedding, and then said, "I don't know if you've heard, but we're Christian and we don't believe in that; our faith doesn't let us believe in that."
"These were local lesbians that came in and targeted them, so unless their heads were in the sand, they knew exactly the bridal shop they were walking into," D'Addesi said.
D'Addesi believes W.W. Bridal was specifically targeted because in the 37 years the shop has been in business, the owners' Christian faith has been openly displayed: "Everyone in the community knows that they are Bible-believing Christians. This just permeates their lifestyle and their business."
Pointing to the larger issue, D'Addesi said, "We are seeing Christians being targeted all across our states. We have the baker in Colorado, the florist in Washington, we have Blaine Anderson the T-shirt guy in Kentucky."
"I believe that we absolutely are being targeted," she said. "The LGBT community got very nasty."
Noting the hypocrisy, D'Addesi posted another video where she asks, "When are we going to walk into a Muslim sandwich shop and ask them to make a BLT and demand that we serve us bacon? We wouldn't do that, we would go somewhere else, but you don't send hate mail, death threats."
D'Addesi told Church Militant that gay activists also came to Bloomsburg to bully surrounding shop owners, asking them to post rainbow flags in store windows, "knowing that the Christian storefront was not going to be able to [place] a LGBTQ flag in there."
She blasted the move as a "Nazi tactic" because it was reminiscent of the Jews in Nazi-controlled countries being forced to wear yellow badges. "Instead of asking the Christians to put a fish in their windows so they can identify and attack us, we're the only ones that can't put the rainbow flag in our window," she remarked.
Most of the shop owners complied; D'Addesi believes it's because they saw what happened to W.W. Bridal and didn't want to be the brunt of hate mail or have bad reviews placed online by gay activists or face an online boycott.
"This is also a problem, that we have outside LGBTQ activists that are coming into our little main street in Pennsylvania and enforcing, demanding, that what they are doing in Chicago happens in main street," she said.
D'Addesi disagrees that W.W. Bridal's closing is a loss, saying, "I believe that this is another win because you have a family that is saying 'No. We will not change the way that we think. We would rather close down than go against God.'"
W.W. Bridal has started a crowdfunding campaign for the seven employees who will be out of a job.