Gay Pride Month, Jack Phillips, LGBTQ+, LGBTQ+ community, Ltd v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission, Masterpiece Cakeshop, News, SCOTUS, Video -

Let them eat cake: The homophobic SCOTUS Masterpiece Cake decision is an anti-gay win crafted in the name of religious freedom

Gay Pride Month, Jack Phillips, LGBTQ+, LGBTQ+ community, Ltd v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission, Masterpiece Cakeshop, News, SCOTUS, Video -

Let them eat cake: The homophobic SCOTUS Masterpiece Cake decision is an anti-gay win crafted in the name of religious freedom

 

Yesterday, I, alongside the rest of the LGBTQ community woke up to the news that the Supreme Court had reached a decision in the Masterpiece Cakeshop, Ltd v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission case. Like any other couple who gets engaged, Charlie Craig and David Mullins, went to Masterpiece Cakeshop to inquire about a cake for their upcoming wedding. The same-sex Colorado couple were on the hunt to find the perfect vendors to help make their wedding a beautiful success. Unfortunately, Jack Phillips, owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop, saw fit to humiliate the couple and refused to service them based singularly on his religious beliefs.

Now, let’s be clear, religion has been used to justify all types of horrific behavior and actions throughout history. Women being burned at the stake, centuries of torture and brutalization of Black bodies under slavery and Jim Crow, the bombing of abortion clinics and killings of doctors, the use of conversion therapy methods to “pray and beat the gay away” and the list goes on and on. There’s nothing “new” about hiding behind religion as a way to dehumanize and discriminate against a group of people that you have decided are unworthy of equal treatment and protection.

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When Phillips brought the case before the Colorado Commission, they ruled in favor of the couple, setting the course for Phillips to appeal to the Supreme Court. Many people, including my wife and I, were fearful of what the outcome of this case could mean for our day-to-day lives.

If the ruling was firmly in favor of Phillips, it would set a dangerous precedent for business owners across the country to create a new version of segregation. Those of us who identify as part of the LGBTQ community could easily be denied services at restaurants, hotels, and other retailers because of who we chose to love with no legal recourse to fight for our dignity.

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Yesterday, the Supreme Court offered a mixed bag in terms of their ruling. In a 7-2 decision, the Court ruled in favor of the cakeshop owner, but with a very narrow decision. Instead of focusing at the larger issue at hand—do business owners have the right to discriminate based on their religious beliefs—the Court instead focused on the treatment of cakeshop owner by the Colorado Commission.

The decision that was carried down was more about “process” than about the substance of the case. As Vox reported, “It’s not that Phillips should, in theory, be allowed to cite his religion to freely discriminate. It’s that the way the Colorado Civil Rights Commission concluded that Phillips had illegally discriminated was very poorly handled”.

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The unfortunate facts of this case unveil that anti-LGBT people and decisions can still receive wins in the Courts—regardless of how narrow. As someone tweeted me yesterday in response to the ruling—what’s to say that in this current political climate that Brown vs. the Board of Education couldn’t be re-litigated and reverse the de-segregation in schools?

Only time will tell.

As we are reminded with each passing day—progress isn’t inevitable, it takes vigilance and consistent and strategic efforts to make it so. Essentially, the Supreme Court pulled a Marie Antionette with this case—they may let us “eat cake,” but we’ll all be sure that to ask them to double the Buttercream and hold the bigotry.


Danielle Moodie-Mills is the host of #WokeAF, a weekly political and pop culture talk show airing Sundays from 10-1pm EST on SiriusXM Progress.  She is also a staunch social justice and LGBTQ equality advocate often tapped for her expertise on MSNBC, CBC and various networks. Follow her musings @DeeTwoCents.  

The post Let them eat cake: The homophobic SCOTUS Masterpiece Cake decision is an anti-gay win crafted in the name of religious freedom appeared first on theGrio.


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