Gay wedding cake decision isn't all bad for LGBTQ community

Gay wedding cake decision isn't all bad for LGBTQ community

Gay wedding cake decision isn't all bad for LGBTQ community

"The Civil Rights Commission's treatment of his case has some elements of a clear and impermissible hostility toward the honest religious beliefs that motivated his objection".

The couple, Curt Freed and Robert Ingersoll, and Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson originally sued the Tri-Cities florist in 2013, arguing state anti-discrimination laws prohibit businesses from discriminating based on sexual orientation.

After Colorado's Civil Rights Commission said that Phillips could not discriminate by refusing to make cakes for same-sex weddings, he chose to stop baking wedding cases for all customers, which he said took away about 40 percent of his business. Justices Kennedy, Roberts, Alito, Breyer, Kagan, Gorsuch and Thomas ruled in favor of Phillips, with Ginsburg and Sotomayor dissenting.

Justice Anthony Kennedy's narrow ruling for the baker hinged on the argument that the Colorado Civil Rights Commission did not provide neutral or fair consideration of Phillips' request for religious accommodation.

The Supreme Court's majority opinion said the Colorado Civil Rights Commission had been biased against Mr Phillips.

Republican President Donald Trump's administration, which intervened in the case in support of Phillips, welcomed the ruling. Wisconsin Democrat Cathy Myers said that the decision will only embolden other "bigoted bakers", while writer Robert Sandy said that the decision gave Phillips license to be a "homophobic a**hole".

The justices did not, however, clarify whether a cake is the type of expressive act protected as free speech by the First Amendment.

"The Supreme Court made the right decision to protect Jack's ability to live and work consistent with his beliefs, because everyone has that freedom".

"It was a big win for us and now we're just looking forward to hopefully getting back into the wedding business, and we'll see how the court ruling affects that", Phillips said.

The American Civil Liberties Union, which represented the couple in its legal fight, said it was pleased the court did not endorse a broad religion-based exemption from anti-discrimination laws.

The high court's ruling focusing narrowly on what justices determined to be disrespect shown to the merchant's claimed were religious convictions that prevented him from making the cake.

While the ruling is certainly painful for the community that had hoped for an LGBTQ+ rights victory, Justice Kennedy's admission that LGBTQ+ individuals should not be "subjected to indignities" when attempting to make the same purchases as cisgender and heterosexual consumers has some weight.

During a brief encounter at Phillips' Masterpiece Cakeshop in the Denver suburb of Lakewood, the baker politely but firmly refused, leaving the couple distraught.

Phillips in 2012 declined to make a custom cake for Colorado couple Charlie Craig and David Mullins.

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 larger issue of refusing service to the gay couple must "await further elaboration" in the courts.

"We brought this case because no one should have to face the shame, embarrassment and humiliation of being told "we don't serve your kind here" that we faced, and we will continue fighting until no one does", they said.

The conservative Christian argued "creative artists" have a right to decide what they sell.

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