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Thread: Supreme Court Sides With Baker Who Turned Away Gay Couple

  1. #1

    Supreme Court Sides With Baker Who Turned Away Gay Couple

    WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court sided with a Colorado baker on Monday in a closely watched case pitting gay rights against claims of religious freedom.

    Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, writing for the majority in the 7-2 decision, relied on narrow grounds, saying a state commission had violated the Constitution’s protection of religious freedom in ruling against the baker, Jack Phillips, who had refused to create a custom wedding cake for a gay couple.

    “The neutral and respectful consideration to which Phillips was entitled was compromised here,” Justice Kennedy wrote. “The Civil Rights Commission’s treatment of his case has some elements of a clear and impermissible hostility toward the sincere religious beliefs that motivated his objection.”

    The decision, which turned on the commission’s asserted hostility to religion, left open the possibility that other cases raising similar issues could be decided differently.

    “The outcome of cases like this in other circumstances must await further elaboration in the courts,” Justice Kennedy wrote, “all in the context of recognizing that these disputes must be resolved with tolerance, without undue disrespect to sincere religious beliefs, and without subjecting gay persons to indignities when they seek goods and services in an open market.”

    The case, Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission, No. 16-111, arose from a brief encounter in 2012, when David Mullins and Charlie Craig visited Mr. Phillips’s bakery, Masterpiece Cakeshop, in Lakewood, Colo. The two men were going to be married in Massachusetts, and they were looking for a wedding cake for a reception in Colorado.

    Mr. Phillips turned them down, saying he would not use his talents to convey a message of support for same-sex marriage at odds with his religious faith. Mr. Mullins and Mr. Craig said they were humiliated by Mr. Phillips’s refusal to serve them, and they filed a complaint with Colorado’s civil rights commission, saying that Mr. Phillips had violated a state law barring discrimination based on sexual orientation.

    Mr. Mullins and Mr. Craig won before the Colorado civil rights commission and in the state courts.

    The Colorado Court of Appeals ruled that Mr. Phillips’s free speech rights had not been violated, noting that the couple had not discussed the cake’s design before Mr. Phillips turned them down. The court added that people seeing the cake would not understand Mr. Phillips to be making a statement and that he remained free to say what he liked about same-sex marriage in other settings.

    Gay rights groups argued that same-sex couples are entitled to equal treatment from businesses open to the public. A ruling for Mr. Phillips, they said, would undermine the Supreme Court’s 2015 ruling guaranteeing a constitutional right to same-sex marriage, marking the unions of gay couples second-class marriages unworthy of legal protection.

    Religious groups responded that the government should not force people to violate their principles in order to make a living. The Supreme Court has long recognized a First Amendment right not to be forced to speak, they said. In 1977, for instance, the court ruled that New Hampshire could not require people to display license plates bearing the state’s motto, “Live Free or Die.”
    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/06/04/u...imes&smtyp=cur
    "I guess I just hate the fact there is public property at all." - Mr. Raceboy.

  2. #2
    I admit I did not see that coming.

    Pete (certainly didn't see it going 7-2)

  3. #3
    I'll take my chances. Put Master
    Mr. Raceboy's Avatar
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    I'm pleasantly shocked.
    "Democracy is a form of worship. It is the worship of jackals by jackasses." H.L. Mencken

  4. #4
    Database Error Put Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Raceboy View Post
    I'm pleasantly shocked.
    Explain; do you view this as a free speech issue or a private Enterprise issue?
    They speak in bulletpointese leftist nutjob drivel. It doesn't matter. Nothing is as great a motivator as the chance to truly be free.
    -Mr. Raceboy

  5. #5
    I'll take my chances. Put Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jester View Post
    Explain; do you view this as a free speech issue or a private Enterprise issue?
    I view it as a freedom issue. It's insanity to think it's acceptable to put a gun to someone's head to force them to bake a cake, regardless of the reason they don't want to bake it.
    "Democracy is a form of worship. It is the worship of jackals by jackasses." H.L. Mencken

  6. #6
    Resident Black Man Great Put
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Raceboy View Post
    I'm pleasantly shocked.
    Don't be. It doesn't really address the issue.

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