The acceptability of gay marriage has taken place with such speed and scale and breadth that it is difficult to keep up with it, and therefore difficult to develop sufficient mechanisms for talking about people who, less than a decade ago, were on the side of a clear majority, and now find themselves scrambling to find a viable role as principled dissenters.
There is a very clear distinction between, say, the late and unlamented Fred Phelps' psychotic, traitorous death cult, obsessing to an unholy degree over the very existence of homosexuals, and a small bakery or mom-and-pop photo studio that just isn't comfortable with providing services to something they don't believe in. It doesn't excuse the latter group from growing up on the issue, mind you, but they probably also don't deserve to get dragged into court over it.
Where the linked article makes a categorical error is in lumping every instance of late into a half-baked dish of opinions and outcomes. What happened with Phil Robertson, Brendon Eich, and the state of Arizona, all of them employees or business concerns being pressured by the interests of capitalism and customer pressure, is simply the way things work. Each of those folks said or did something that many gays found insulting, and activist groups, by definition, mobilized and made it clear that, well, gays collectively have enough discretionary income to respond in kind. In other words, they made it clear that they don't have to take shit from people who depend on customers, be they teevee viewers or tourists. Simple as that.
We all see instantly how offensive, in just the last couple of days, the comments from LA Clippers owner Donald Sterling and teahadi ranchtard Cliven Bundy have resonated. There's just nothing debatable or defensible there. Well, Phil Robertson has repeatedly compared gays to criminals, drunkards, bestial enthusiasts. Should gays have to take shit from some pigfucking hillbilly, or do they have the right to tell Robertson's employer that maybe they won't patronize their product anymore?
Arizona was ready to legitimize the "turn away the gay" rights of businesses, and in a state that earns a good chunk of revenue from tourism, and is hosting the next Super Bowl, it became clear pretty quickly that their moralizing was going to cost them. Everything has its price.
Again, when we compare the ledger on each side, I would say that these noble, principled dissenters who suddenly find themselves unjustly persecuted for merely speaking their wittle minds, need to take a look at the big picture. In more than half the US states, people can still be fired just for being gay. No one, to my knowledge, has ever been beaten or killed for voicing their opinion against gay marriage, or homosexuals in general.
I think they're mostly just surprised at how quickly the tide of opinion turned against what they had thought was safe and acceptable. And that's okay, for a while, but it's time to get the memo, and understand that this dialogue -- a dialogue, let's remember, about the lives and rights of a group of consenting, law-abiding, tax-paying adults -- is back-and-forth. Each side has an inalienable right to call bullshit on the other for disingenuousness and intellectual dishonesty, and to vote accordingly with their wallets if necessary. Ain't that America?