Jack Phillips of Masterpiece Cakeshop in Lakewood, CO. The Supreme Court recently voted in his favor concerning an anti-discrimination case.
PHOTO CREDIT: Matthew Staver for The New York Times
Earlier this week, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of a baker who refused to make a cake for a gay couple's wedding. The justices ruled 7-2 that the Colorado Civil Rights Commission violated the baker’s First Amendment rights to freedom of religion.
This case’s decision was expected to be monumental for LGBTQ rights but instead has done little to battle discrimination based on sexual preference. The lawyers for the baker had presented his case more as a free-speech issue than one of religious freedom, however, the court's ruling focused almost entirely on what the justices viewed as disrespect to the baker’s religious convictions.
“This is discrimination based on sexual orientation and it’s not to be tolerated, even if it’s motivated by faith. Religious liberty gives you the right to your beliefs but not the right to harm others.” ~ Louise Melling, deputy legal director of the ACLU via NY Times
The silver lining here is that the Supreme Court’s ruling only applies to this specific case. They framed their decision narrowly so it doesn’t say whether or not businesses, in general, can refuse service to gay or lesbian individuals based on their religious beliefs.