“The passion of what we do at Hands On Originals is to take people’s message and make it better.” – Blaine Adamson, Managing Owner
“He’s very serious about the fact that his work is a part of his worship. And his work is a part of his faith.” – Jim Campbell, Blaine’s attorney (Alliance Defending Freedom)
In 2012, Blaine declined an order to print shirts promoting an upcoming gay pride festival. A complaint was filed followed by a smear campaign against his company. In October 2014, was found guilty of discrimination. He appealed the decision and the court ruled in favor of Blaine and Hands On Originals; saying he is free to decline to print messages that conflict with his religious beliefs and the government cannot force him to do otherwise.
“Very early in this case there was a lesbian print shop owner in New Jersey that came out openly in support of Blaine and his right to decline to print messages that he disagreed with. People on both sides of the debate can see the virtue of allowing people the freedom to live consistent with their beliefs because the same precedent that would protect Blaine’s beliefs is the same precedent that protects this lesbian print shop owner’s freedom to decline to print messages that she disagrees with.”
From 2010 to 2012, Blaine’s company declined orders from at least 13 customers for message-based reasons, including messages promoting a strip club, pens promoting a sexually explicit video, and shirts containing a violence related message.
As Circuit Judge James Ishmael said in his ruling on the appeal, the First Amendment protects citizens from being “compelled to be part of the advocacy of messages opposed to their sincerely held Christian beliefs” and that the initial order convicting Blaine of discrimination “inflicts a substantial burden on their free exercise of religion” that could not be justified.