Despite getting financial and moral support from some unlikely allies, Aaron and Melissa Klein, the Christian bakers who were fined $135,000 after they declined to make a wedding cake for a lesbian couple, have also received their fair share of nasty and threatening messages.
One such response that was emailed to the couple on Sunday carried with it a cryptic threat for the Sweetcakes by Melissa bakery owners.
"The lord has spoken to me and said you must die for your sins and your shop will be blown up," the text read. "I will be coming to you, I know where you live ... Don't fall asleep."
Aaron Klein told The Church Boys on Tuesday that this isn't the first time that he and his wife have received threatening messages, though he said it's often hard to assess the viability or legitimacy of these messages.
"This isn't the first one we've gotten ... like this and I would probably venture to say it won't be the last," he said. "We've been called bigots, we've been called all kinds of things."
Listen to Klein discuss the threatening message below:
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It is important to note that, despite the email's threat to blow up the bakery, the Kleins' Sweetcakes by Melissa shop closed down last year in the wake of the controversy over the cake refusal.
Klein said that he sometimes turns these emails over to authorities, and while he knows that they might actually be nothing to worry about, he wants to have a record in the case that a "fringe person" actually does come after him or his family.
When he reached out to police back in 2013 after receiving some problematic and threatening messages as a result of the cake refusal, he said that one cop told him: "Get a gun."
"It is disturbing to get any of those [emails], whether you find them viable or not," Klein said.
It's not just the Kleins who have discussed receiving threats in the wake of the cake battle, as Rachel Cryer-Bowman and Laurel Bowman-Cryer — the lesbian couple who were refused a cake by the bakers — also reported receiving death threats after the case went public.
Klein told The Church Boys that he doesn't understand why people, regardless of where they stand on the matter, turn to making threats and sending hateful messages to either party.
"By my standard of living, by my faith ... I would say I can totally disagree with someone, but that never gives me the right to get crass," he said. "I never, ever would think to threaten violence against somebody, because they don't believe the way I do. That flies in the face of everything we stand [for] in this country."
As TheBlaze previously reported, the Kleins' Sweetcakes by Melissa truck was reportedly vandalized two separate times in 2013 while it was parked in the family's driveway, an experience that was particularly nerve-wrecking for the family, as their home is in a highly secluded area.
"This was at our home and we live in a very rural area. [Our] address is kind of hard to find," Klein said. "For somebody to come out and break into my vehicle — not once, but twice in my driveway — it was intentional."
Listen to a separate interview that Aaron and Melissa Klein did earlier this year with The Church Boys:
He said that items were torn out of the vehicle, that it was ransacked and that vandals left the truck's doors open; the family never found out who committed the crime, though, interestingly, nothing was taken.
Despite the negative messages coming their way, Klein said that he believes the hate mail and threats are "outside of the average American's thought process," and that most people wouldn't condone such behavior.
The couple has also received support from gays and atheists, among others. Read about that here.