1st Amendment Partnership Response to Masterpiece Cakeshop Decision
WASHINGTON D.C.—Today, the United States Supreme Court issued its long-awaited opinion in the case Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission. In a 7-2 decision, the Court concluded that Masterpiece Cakeshop owner Jack Phillips was treated with undue hostility because of his sincerely held religious beliefs. In response, 1st Amendment Partnership President Tim Schultz released the following statement:
“The Supreme Court ruled decisively in favor of religious freedom. While legal experts will correctly describe the grounds for the decision in favor of Jack Phillips as “narrow,” seven members of the Court ruled that it is unconstitutional for a government agency to treat Mr. Phillips’ sincere religious beliefs about marriage as if they are tantamount to “bigotry.” Many of Mr. Phillips’ public critics use precisely the same discredited “bigotry” argument that the Supreme Court decisively struck down. That is a big deal.”
“Still, as Justice Kennedy stated in the majority opinion, there are many outstanding issues involving religious and LGBT rights which “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 legislative process, not the courts, is the best venue for this type of line-drawing and reconciliation of differing interests. It is both possible and necessary for legislators to protect religious people and LGBT people from unjust discrimination.”
Kerry Troup, ktroup@
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