Kennedy Sends Mixed Messages in Supreme Court Cake Case

Kennedy Sends Mixed Messages in Supreme Court Cake Case

A Colorado cake baker and the same-sex couple for whom he declined to make a wedding cake were all at the Supreme Court to witness arguments in the case.

David Cole, an attorney for Mullins, a 33-year-old poet and musician, and Craig, a 37-year-old interior designer, said he respected the sincerity of Phillips' convictions. He wondered if Phillips prevailed "could the baker put a sign in his window, we do not bake cakes for gay weddings?"

Phillips and his lawyers have it exactly wrong-it is they who pose a threat to religious freedom.

But when the subject turned to free exercise of religion, Kennedy was infuriated by a part of the record where one of the commissioners on the Colorado Civil Rights Commission, who ruled against Phillips, noted that using freedom of religion to justify discrimination is a "despicable piece of rhetoric".

One other possible result that emerged from the argument is that the justices could return the case to the Colorado commission for reconsideration if the court finds its first decision was tainted by the religious bias of a commissioner.

The Supreme Court will take up a standout amongst the most earth shattering instances of the term on Tuesday as it considers contentions from a Colorado cook who declined to influence a cake to praise a same-sex to couple's marriage since he trusts that God composed marriage to be between a man and a lady.

Colorado is among only 21 states with statewide laws barring discrimination against gays and lesbians in public accommodations.

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Streak forward to 2012, when same-sex marriage was not yet lawful in Colorado, but rather two men strolled into the bread kitchen. "If that's the case, how do you draw a line?"

They fear that if the Supreme Court ultimately sides with Phillips, it will diminish its landmark ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges.

Waggoner contended that a man seeing one of Phillips' custom wedding cakes - his "aesthetic articulation" - would "comprehend that it celebrates and communicates bolster for the couple's marriage". In the brief, Acting Solicitor General Jeffrey B. Wall argued Phillips' cakes equated to a form of expression and forcing him to create such an expression for an event that contradicted his religious beliefs was a violation of his First Amendment rights. Liberty and equality are mutually reinforcing values, and both are weakened when they are placed at odds.

"You have a view that a cake can be speech because it involves great skill and artistry", she said. When Amish, Jewish, Seventh-Day Adventist, Native American, Sikh and Muslim people of faith have sought protection, the court has recognized their constitutional right to practice their religion without government-imposed burdens or discrimination. They will urge the court to embrace their interpretation of religious liberty principles, insisting that if they don't win, the rights of people of faith will be in serious jeopardy.

"A loss at the Supreme Court could open the door to many forms of discrimination that have always been outlawed in our society", TIME reported Mullins said. "It's never about the person making the request, it's about the message communicated on the cake".

So the Texas Supreme Court took back its rejection of the case and eventually ruled that there is no established right to spousal benefits. And that was despite a dissent from Trump's most recently appointed Justice Neil Gorsuch.

Pidgeon and Hicks, also backed by state Republican leaders, argued that the benefits violated the Texas constitution and state and local laws against same-sex marriage. "It can't discriminate against certain members of the public, and that's what happened in this case". Phillips' lawyer claims that the baker is an artist and should not be forced to express what the government dictates.