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Author Topic:   Gay Marriage as an attack on Christianity
Chiroptera
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Posts: 6772
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 5.7


Message 1025 of 1484 (834391)
06-04-2018 7:53 PM
Reply to: Message 1019 by Percy
12-05-2017 10:43 AM


Decision on Masterpiece Cakeshop is in
The US Supreme Court has announced its decision in Masterpiece Cakeshop v Colorado Civil Rights Commission today. In a 7-2 decision, the Supreme Court has agreed that the "state commission had violated the Constitution’s protection of religious freedom in ruling against the baker, Jack Phillips, who had refused to create a custom wedding cake for a gay couple."

Caveat: I have not read the entire decision, nor the the concurring opinions, nor the dissenting opinions.

I have read the syllabus (the introduction that summarizes the decision), and here are the points that I seem to read in it:

(1) The state does have the authority to protect its citizens against discrimination based on sexual orientation, and that religious beliefs are not sufficient to justify violating such laws.

(2) However, in this case, according to the majority, designing a wedding cake is artistically expressive enough that the rights to free expression and free exercise of religion entitled the plaintiff to "to a neutral and respectful consideration of his claims in all the circumstances of the case. "

(3) However, the Commission showed "elements of a clear and impermissible hostility toward the sincere religious beliefs motivating his objection," which, if I'm reading into this correctly, indicates the decision was based on an impermissible hostility to the plaintiff's religious beliefs and not on the permissible secular purposes of prohibiting discrimination.

I will point out that normally left-leaning justices Breyer and Kagan also joined the decision, and a quick glance at their concurring opinion seems to emphasis this hostility part.



Progress is not an illusion, it happens, but it is slow and invariably disappointing. - George Orwell

This message is a reply to:
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Replies to this message:
 Message 1026 by NoNukes, posted 06-05-2018 12:12 AM Chiroptera has acknowledged this reply
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Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6772
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 5.7


(2)
Message 1028 of 1484 (834404)
06-05-2018 9:49 AM
Reply to: Message 1027 by Tangle
06-05-2018 2:27 AM


Re: Decision on Masterpiece Cakeshop is in
Sorry if my summary of the court's summary wasn't clear. The point isn't that the cake buyers expressed hostility toward the cake maker's religious beliefs. The alleged hostility was on the part of the commissioners that were adjudicating the hearing.

The Supreme Court has ruled that Phillips (the baker) was entitled to a fair and impartial hearing. However, comments made by the members of the Colorado Civil Rights Commission during the hearing itself, indicated a possible hostility to religious beliefs and to Phillips' particular religious beliefs during the hearing itself.

In the US, the First Amendment prohibits the government and its agents from using hostility toward religion or to particular religious beliefs as a reason for its actions.

The Court made clear that there are legitimate reasons to prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation, and there are legitimate reasons to extend this protection even over the religious objections of those who would deny these protections, but that in this particular case, statements made by the officials adjudicating the case during the hearing tainted the process in this particular case.

Added by edit:

I forgot to mention: in regard to a proceeding or enactment of a law being tainted by hostility to a religious belief, I think it is very significant that the Court explicitly cited Church of Lukumi Babalu Aye in its decision here.

I'm also getting the impression that the more "liberal leaning" justices are going out of their way to demonstrate that, despite the howls of outrage in some religious and conservative circles, expressing the belief or opinion that same sex marriage is wrong is always going to be a protected right.

Edited by Chiroptera, : No reason given.



Progress is not an illusion, it happens, but it is slow and invariably disappointing. - George Orwell

This message is a reply to:
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Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6772
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 5.7


Message 1030 of 1484 (834409)
06-05-2018 1:19 PM


Masterpiece Cakeshop: Main Opinion
Okay, I've finally read the main opinion of Masterpiece Cakeshop v Colorado Civil Rights Commission. I think my initial reading is correct.

The main opinion was written by Justice Kennedy and joined by Chief Justice Roberts and Justices Breyer, Alito, Kagan, and Gorsuch.

First, the Court absolutely did not rule whether or not requiring Phillips (the owner of Masterpiece Cakes) to obey Colorado's anti-discrimination statute was a violation of his First Amendment rights of free expression and free exercise of religion. That is left as an open question for a future court case.

What the the Court actually ruled was that expressions made by the officials adjudicating the case in the official hearing showed hostility to Phillips' beliefs, and so violated Phillips' First Amendment rights because the hearing itself may have been hostile to and biased against his religious beliefs.

-

The decision made it very clear that the federal government and the states have the authority to protect its citizens against discrimination based on sexual orientation, and in some cases even have an obligation to protect them.

The Court cited Oregon Dept. of Human Resources v Smith to indicate that a business owner's religious objections are not sufficient to violate "valid and neutral law of general applicability."

However, there are certain facts about this particular case that needed to be addressed.

-

First, at the time, Colorado did not recognize same sex marriage, and the US Supreme Court had not made its rulings in US v Windsor or Obergefell v Hodges -- Craig and Mullins, the couple trying to purchase the wedding cake, intended to marry in Massachusetts and then hold the reception in Colorado -- so the Court pointed out that Phillips had a reason to believe that his refusal would not violate the anti-discrimination law. This was a question that needed to be addressed.

Second, Phillips claimed that being required to design a cake for a same sex wedding would be a violation of his right to free expression as an artist and a violation of his free exercise of religion as a conservative Christian who did not recognize same sex marriages.

In fact, Phillips claimed that he was willing so sell the couple any of his other products, stating that this shows that his objections were based on his First Amendment rights as an artist and a Christian, not as a business owner who doesn't want to do business with a particular group of people.

The Court affirmed that this was a point that would need to be addressed.

-

All in all, the Court says that these are important questions that need to be addressed in a fair and impartial process that respects the religious beliefs of the parties. However, this is what did not happen.

Over the course of two hearings, two of the Commissioners adjudicating the case made comments that could be interpreted as indicating hostility to Phillips' particular religious beliefs and to religious beliefs in general, and none of the other Commissioners objected to those comments.

One comment indicated that one of the Commissioner felt that business owners shouldn't bring their religious beliefs into the public to begin with.

Another Commissioner made a comment that could be interpreted to disrespect religion in general and to question the sincerity of people who use religion to justify their bigotry.

In any case, the Court cited Church of Lukumi Babalu Aye v City of Hialeah to indicate that these comments during the hearings were unacceptable. There may be perfectly legitimate secular reasons to force Phillips to comply with the anti-discrimination laws despite his religious objections, but the comments made by these Commissioners showed that there was the possibility that the decision was made because of a bias against a particular religious belief.

It didn't help that at the time this case was going through the process, several bakeries refused to make cakes with anti-gay messages on them, and the Civil Rights Commission upheld their refusals. The Court points out that there may be valid differences between these situations that justifies the different decision, but these differences were not adequately explained. In fact, an appeals court simply talked about one set of messages being offensive to the bakers, but the Court pointed out that it is not the business of the government or its agents to make determinations based on what it feels is offensive.

-

Personal opinion (based on not yet having read the concurring opinions or the dissent):

Perdiction #1: I think the Court made it clear that under most circumstances, it will rule that a business owner's religious beliefs cannot be used as a defense of violating a state's anti-discrimination law.

Prediction #2: I'm less certain about this, but I suspect that a state may require a business to cater to a same sex wedding. For example, if a caterer offers a pre-printed menu from which a customer selects appetizers, entrees, desserts, and so forth, then catering to a same sex wedding cannot be construed as an expression of endorsement by the business and may be compelled to comply with the law.

Prediction #3: I'm not very certain about this part, but there's something about how the decision was made that in some cases, like a baker who designs from scratch a wedding cake for each event, or a florist who designs a flower arrangement from scratch for each event, the Court may rule that the artist has a First Amendment right to refuse to cater to a same sex wedding. But this is more of a vague feeling.

Edited by Chiroptera, : Kennedy wrote the opinion, not merely "joined" it.



Progress is not an illusion, it happens, but it is slow and invariably disappointing. - George Orwell

  
Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6772
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 5.7


Message 1032 of 1484 (834416)
06-05-2018 5:51 PM


Masterpiece Cakeshop: Kagan and Breyer
I've now read Justice Kagan's concurring opinion, to which Justice Breyer joined.

Most of this opinion repeats the main points of the main opinion.

Kagan and Breyer explicitly point out that the "ministerial exception", that, for example, a minister cannot be made to officate a same sex wedding against their religious beliefs, is not in danger.

What Kagan and Breyer do is explain a little bit more about the different treatment of the various bakers and in what way this different treatment indicates a possible hostility to religious beliefs.

While Phillips' case was being adjudicated, several people went to bakeries and tried to order cakes with anti-gay messages. The bakeries refused those orders and the Colorado Civil Rights Commission supported the bakeries' refusal. But Kennedy's opinion pointed out that the difference between these two cases was never adequately explained.

Kagan and Breyer sharpens the point here. They point out that there is an obvious difference between the wedding cake for a same sex marriage and the cakes with anti-gay messages: Colorado law explicitly forbids discrimination based on sexual orientation while there is no law that requires bakeries to put any message on any cake that a potential customer asks for.

But this difference was never stated during the hearing before the Commission nor during the appeals process. In fact, one appeals court stated the difference was that the bakers' were justifiably opposed to the anti-gay messages since they found the messages offensive. But allowing the bakers to find anti-gay messages as offensive but not a cake made for a same sex wedding, the appeals court is possibly betraying a hostility to certain beliefs but not others, something that is not allowed as a legal argument.

-

Personal opinion:

In elaborating this point, Kagan and Breyer write a lengthy footnote contrasting their opinion with that of Justice Gorsuch. I haven't yet read Gorsuch's concurring opinion, but I find it interesting that Kagan and Breyer take pains to elaborate that "wedding cake" is simply a product and doesn't become a message or an expression depending on to whom it is intended.

I'm pretty certain that the Court is signaling to the lower courts that they had better not accept religious objections as an excuse to violate state anti-discrimination laws. I also get the impression here that Kagan and Breyer is warning lower courts that they won't accept objection to same sex marriage as a legitimate excuse to refuse to cater to same sex couples in defiance of state anti-discrimination laws.



Progress is not an illusion, it happens, but it is slow and invariably disappointing. - George Orwell

  
Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6772
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 5.7


Message 1033 of 1484 (834417)
06-05-2018 5:54 PM
Reply to: Message 1031 by Modulous
06-05-2018 3:52 PM


Re: Decision on Masterpiece Cakeshop is in
I agree that the point is probably vindication by the SCOTUS.

Another benefit is that if the law increases penalties for repeated violations of the law, then the first strike has now been erased.

Also, not entirely relevant to Phillips himself, but for future cases this decision gives lower courts direction as to a specific example where an appeal is justified, and even a reason to stay a judgment while the appeal is being heard.



Progress is not an illusion, it happens, but it is slow and invariably disappointing. - George Orwell

This message is a reply to:
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Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6772
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 5.7


Message 1034 of 1484 (834430)
06-05-2018 9:16 PM


Masterpiece Cakeshop: Gorsuch and Alito
This is a summary of the concurring opinion written by Justice Gorsuch and to which Justice Alito joins.

I'll have to admit that I don't fully understand Gorsuch's arguments; he seems to make a lot of unnecessary and irrelevant distinctions and comparisons but I think I get the basic gist. I haven't yet read Justice Thomas' opinion, to which Gorsuch joins; it could be that some things will be clearer when I do read it.

The first paragraph is rather interesting. Gorsuch and Alito recognizes that Kennedy's main opinion correctly interprets Smith, but then they say, "Smith remains controversial in many quarters."

I find it interesting that they do not unequivocally endorse the majority's acceptance of Smith. Yet, Gorsuch and Alito do join Kennedy in the main opinion, so I'm not entirely sure what, if any, implications there are here.

Gorsuch and Alito agree with Kagan and Breyer that hostility toward Phillips' religious beliefs is evident in the different outcomes between Phillips refusal to bake the cake for Craig and Mullins' wedding reception and the other bakers' refusal to bake the anti-gay cakes for William Jack. But Kagan and Breyer think that the problem is that the Commission and the courts did not draw the correct distinction between the two cases; Gorsuch and Alitio feel that there is no significant distinction between the two cases.

Gorsuch points out that Colorado's anti-discrimination statute also prohibits discrimination based on a person's religious beliefs. And that the three bakeries' refusal to bake cakes with Jack's messages against same sex marriage is as much an example of discrimination against Jack's religious beliefs as Phillips' refusal to bake the cake for Craig and Mullins' is an example of discrimination against Craig and Mullins' sexual orientation.

Unlike Kagan and Breyer, Gorsuch and Alitio claim that a wedding cake is more than just a wedding because of the marriage it celebrates, so Jack's cakes are more than just cakes with writing on them because of the writing on them.

As I said, much of this opinion is confusing to me, but I think Gorsuch is trying to list various criteria of distinguish between the two cases to show that they all lead to absurdities.

In the end, Gorsuch and Alitio agree that the decision against Phillips is based on hostitily to his beliefs and therefore are a violation of his First Amendment rights.

-

My personal opinion:

As I said, I found the first paragraph interesting. It seems to me that Gorsuch and Alito are leaving themselves an "out" so that in the future they won't be committed to denying a religious person the right to obey a law they find offensive.

I also agree more with Kagan and Breyer: there is a distinction to be made between the two cases, although it remains to be seen whether the distinction is legally relevant. But I think the issue is clear: if and when a case comes before this court where a person violates an anti-discrimination statute by refusing service to a same sex wedding, Kagan and Breyer will probably agree that the First Amendment does not protect the person; Gorsuch and Alito will probably agree that the First Amendment does protect the person.

It's interesting that Chief Justice Roberts didn't join Gorsuch and Alitio in this opinion. Could be he disagrees with them. Could be he's undecided on this part of the issue. But it's also possible that he doesn't want to tip his hand quite yet until a more relevant case comes before the Court.



Progress is not an illusion, it happens, but it is slow and invariably disappointing. - George Orwell

  
Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6772
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 5.7


Message 1035 of 1484 (834435)
06-05-2018 11:54 PM


Masterpiece Cakeshop: Thomas and Gorsuch
A summary of the opinion of Justice Thomas, with Justice Gorsuch joining.

Six of the justices of the Supreme Court have ruled to reverse the judgment of the Colorado Court of Appeals due to evidence that the decision of the Colorado Civil Rights Commission was base in part on hostility to Phillips' religious beliefs. Four of these justices are using this as an excuse to avoid ruling on the merits original case.

Well, Justice Thomas is having none of that. He has an opinion on whether Colorado's anti-discrimination laws violate Phillips' First Amendment rights, and he's damn well going to give it!

To Thomas, the essential fact here is that Phillips creates custom designed cakes for weddings. The logos used in Phillips' bakery indicate that Phillips sees himself as an artist; he designs the cakes first by sketching the designs on paper; he sits with the wedding party to discuss their wedding to get ideas how to design their cake. All indications is that Phillips designs cakes that are unique to the individual couple and their wedding.

Thomas then cites previous cases to show that the type of artistic expression exhibited by Phillips has not been considered a "public accommodation", and that compelling him to use his artistic abilities for a cause that he does not believe in would be a violation of his right to free expression.

Thomas then repeats that past cases show that expression of ideas (or, in this case, the refusal to express ideas) cannot be banned just because some person or group finds the them offensive.

Finally, Thomas repeats his warnings that he gave in his dissent to Obergefell, namely, that Obergefell would be used to squash dissent against same sex marriage -- a strange warning to make considering this case came well before Obergefell was decided, and, in any case, it seems a bit extreme to think that requiring a bakery that bakes wedding cakes to bake a cake and put two little dudes on top of it is the same thing as "squashing dissent".

-

My personal opinion:

I already mentioned that, if argued on the merits of the actual merits of the case itself, if Masterpiece Cakeshop actual designs unique cakes for each particular wedding, then Phillips' refusal to bake a cake for a same sex wedding might be protected on First Amendment grounds.

However, in this particular case, Thomas' opinion is kind of irrelevant since the majority has decided to punt this decision due to a technical violation.



Progress is not an illusion, it happens, but it is slow and invariably disappointing. - George Orwell

Replies to this message:
 Message 1036 by NoNukes, posted 06-06-2018 12:46 PM Chiroptera has acknowledged this reply

  
Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6772
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 5.7


(1)
Message 1037 of 1484 (834488)
06-06-2018 5:43 PM


Masterpiece Cakeshop: Ginsburg and Sotomayor
Justice Ginsburg's dissent, joined by Justice Sotomayor.

Justice Ginsburg claims that the comments made by the Colorado Civil Rights Commission and the Colorado Court of Appeals rise to the accepted level indicating "hostility to Phillips' religious beliefs." Furthermore, the entire process consisted of several independent steps, culminating in a trial before the Colorado Court of Appeals that "considered the case de novo." Therefore, there is no reason to vacate the lower court's judgment based on hostility toward Phillips' beliefs.

The main thrust of this opinion is that the record contains sufficient information to determine whether Phillips' violation of Colorado's anti-discrimination merits protection under the First Amendment.

In particular, Ginsburg and Sotomayer elaborate on the difference between the Phillips' refusal to create a wedding cake for a same-sex marriage and the other three bakers' refusal to sell William Jack a cake with anti-same sex messages on them.

The three bakers did not discriminate against Jack because of his religion; they would have refused to make such cakes for any individual regardless of religious belief or lack of religious belief. On the other hand, the three bakers would have been more than happy to sell Jack cakes with any other religious message that he wanted, as long as such messages weren't based on "hate".

This is different than Phillips' refusal. Ginsburg points out that Phillips rejected Craig and Mullins' request before there was any discuss on what, if any text, should be on the cake. In fact, Masterpiece Cakeshop's advertisements show no text whatsoever on the wedding cakes. Presumably, despite each cake perhaps being a unique artistic creation, once it's done there is nothing that would indicate whether the cake was or was not intended for a same sex marriage. Therefore, the wedding cake itself cannot be construed as a "message". So refusal to create a cake for a same sex wedding can only be properly construed as discriminating against the couple based on their sexual orientation.

Therefore, Ginsburg and Sotomayor would have affirmed the lower court's judgment.

-

Personal opinion:

I don't have the legal expertise to judge whether or not the majority was correct in reversing the Colorado Court of Appeals' judgment due to hostility toward Phillips' beliefs. Right now, all I feel I can do is defer to the judgment of the majority while acknowledging that there are legitimate grounds for a difference of opinion.

But I think that Ginsburg and Sotomayor make a very good case for the difference between refusing to create a cake for Craig and Mullins' wedding and refusing to bake cakes with explicit messages condemning same sex marriage.

Edited by Chiroptera, : I misspelled Justice Sotomayor's name in the comment title, and it was really starting to bug me.



Progress is not an illusion, it happens, but it is slow and invariably disappointing. - George Orwell

  
Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6772
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 5.7


Message 1038 of 1484 (834515)
06-07-2018 11:56 AM


My opinion on the judgment
The Supreme Court voted 7-2 to reverse the judgment of the Colorado Court of Appeals on narrow technical grounds. Comments made by two members of the Colorado Civil Rights Commission and the ruling by the Colorado Court of Appeals shows evidence of hostility toward Mr. Phillips' religious beliefs and so a strong possibility that the decisions made were not adequately based on permissible secular reasons to protect citizens against unfair treatment but because Mr. Phillips had beliefs that were unpopular.

Yet three of the justices -- Thomas, Ginsburg, and Sotomayor -- felt that there was adequate information in the record to rule on merits of the underlying case itself, and I would say that Kagan and Breyer did as well. But Kagan and Breyer as well as Kennedy and maybe Roberts felt that they couldn't rule on these merits. (Gorsuch and Alito seem to have a different take on the issue.)

Why?

(1) It may be that the hostility the justices saw in the record were sufficient to taint the proceedings to such a degree that the Court had no choice but to deal with this evident bias before they could justify examining the underlying case itself. I'll have my opinion on this a little later.

(2) I also get the impression that the Court is signaling that unpopular and offensive beliefs are protected and that no judgment will be allowed just because someone's beliefs are unpopular. I think that I recall that Kennedy's opinion makes an issue of this, and Kagan's felt that she and Breyer had to emphasize that the Misterial Exception was absolutely not in jeopardy. When I read Thomas' opinion, I was even more convinced that this issue was on the minds of the Court.

(3) Interestingly, on the same day this ruling was announced, Politico and The New Republic ran articles predicting that the Court was going to use the religious-bias-shown-by-officials'-statements argument to strike down Trump's Muslim ban. It's possible that these two cases together focused some of the Justices attention to the statements made by the relevant officials.

-

Now for my personal opinion. Ironically, it's my agreement with much of what Justice Ginsburg writes that makes me agree with Justices Kagan and Breyer. I think that Kagan and Breyer's opinion is spot on.

The differences that Ginsburg and Sotomayor pointed out that between the two situations -- Phillips refusing to create a cake for Craig and Mullins versus the other three bakeries refusing to sell Jack his cake -- are so obvious that I'm rather amazed that these differences were never pointed out and used in the prior proceedings.

As a note, I'll admit that I had trouble articulating these differences myself before I read Ginsburg's opinion, but it wasn't my job to give this case my full, undivided attention while examining all the relevant facts and listening to all the arguments made by the parties.

As Kagan and Breyer point out, the Colorado Court of Appeals -- the last venue hearing the case before it was presented to the Supreme Court -- didn't make this distinction. Instead, the Appeals Court merely said that the bakeries found Jack's message "offensive", but not giving the same consideration to Phillips. And, as the majority of the Court points out, it is not permissible to make rulings because one set of beliefs is "offensive".

I think that the fact that the Court of Appeals missed a very clear and obvious difference (or that the defendant, the State of Colorado, was itself unable to understand the true difference) and instead had to rely on a legally impermissible distinction gives good evidence that the Appeals Court was ruling because of disrespect and hostility toward Phillips' beliefs.

I therefore (as a layman citizen, of course -- IANAL!) feel that the Supreme Court was correct in taking a strong stand against this evident bias and reversing the judgment.

-

The reason I feel this way is because I believe, just out of a sense of fairness and justice, that beliefs themselves must not be punished, at least not by the government. That's not to say that we, as individuals, can't find some beliefs reprehensible or that we can't, as private citizens act against a person based on their beliefs. In fact, I myself find Phillips' beliefs in the case terrible and his behavior reprehensible, and I would certainly not patronize his bakery. However, legal judgment cannot be based just because I find his beliefs terrible -- legal judgment needs to be purely based on the secular harm that his actions cause.

I will also admit that I'm being a bit self-serving here. I am on the left; although I don't mind being called a liberal, I'm actually a socialist, and I am an atheist. Whenever laws have been made because some beliefs are "offensive" and whenever judgments were based on the "offensiveness" of ideas, my side loses way more often that the other side does! I warn my compatriots on the left, if we allow bias against "offensive" beliefs to be a part of government action, we will be cutting our own throats.

-

So I admit, I may be a little overly sensitive to charges of bias and hostility against beliefs on the part of government actors. Be it as it may, I find Kagan and Breyer's opinion to be compelling.

-

I will also say that my opinions in the case are still in a state of flux. It could be that my opinion may change again as I think about it more, or as I hear what other people have to say, or if I learn additional facts about the case than was mentioned in the opinions I've read.

Edited by Chiroptera, : Typos in the last sentence.



Progress is not an illusion, it happens, but it is slow and invariably disappointing. - George Orwell

  
Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6772
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 5.7


Message 1039 of 1484 (834520)
06-07-2018 5:13 PM


Opinion piece from the Guardian
I just read this column from the Guardian, written by a former law clerk of Kennedy's.

Basically, Mr. Matz states that he disagrees with the ruling, but he understands and respects Kennedy's decision in this matter and says that this in no way tarnishes Kennedy's legacy in advancing the rights of our gay and lesbian cousins.

He also points out some of the very positive aspects of this ruling, one of which is that a clear majority of the Justices signed onto a decision that explicitly acknowledges that

“gay persons and gay couples cannot be treated as social outcasts or as inferior in dignity and worth”.


Progress is not an illusion, it happens, but it is slow and invariably disappointing. - George Orwell

Replies to this message:
 Message 1040 by Faith, posted 06-07-2018 8:38 PM Chiroptera has responded

  
Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6772
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 5.7


Message 1041 of 1484 (834531)
06-07-2018 9:05 PM
Reply to: Message 1040 by Faith
06-07-2018 8:38 PM


Re: Opinion piece from the Guardian
So would it be treating a person as a social outcast or as inferior in dignity ad worth who wanted to marry an underage child by denying that marriage?

Well, as far as I know, it's never a crime to simply want something.

I suppose in the private sector, if an individual expressed a desire to marry an underage child there might be some social consequences. But I'm not aware that "people who want to marry underage children" are, as a class, unfairly discriminated against in terms of housing, employment, or conducting business. But you may feel differently; in that case, it is your right to lobby your elected officials to add "people who want to marry underage children" to your state's anti-discrimination statutes.

-

Seems to me this law is denying ordinary rights to Christians who will have to close their wedding oriented businesses to avoid being sued or prosecuted for their religious faith.

Yes, a Christian might make that choice. Or a Christian might discontinue the wedding related stuff and continue selling the non-wedding products. Or the Christian might just decide that gay money spends just as well as non-gay money and sell the same products to all their customers equally. In some cases, a Christian might go the "civil disobedience" route and court increasing fines and jail time to make an important statement.

I admit that a socially conservative Christian might have some difficult decisions to make. But then, as a non-conservative non-Christian, I've also had to make some choices I didn't like. But that's the price one sometimes has to pay in order to live peaceably with other people in a diverse society.



Progress is not an illusion, it happens, but it is slow and invariably disappointing. - George Orwell

This message is a reply to:
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Replies to this message:
 Message 1043 by Faith, posted 06-07-2018 11:38 PM Chiroptera has responded

  
Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6772
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 5.7


Message 1048 of 1484 (834543)
06-08-2018 8:26 AM
Reply to: Message 1043 by Faith
06-07-2018 11:38 PM


Re: Opinion piece from the Guardian
However, yes, I think Christians are going to have to give up wedding-related businesses, it looks like that's the way things are going, Christians who take the Bible seriously anyway.

I doubt that's what's going to happen, though. Some will make a big theatrical display about turning off the lights, but in the end most are going to decide that whatever the Bible says about same sex marriage, it doesn't require them to shut down the business they love.

At worst, they'll just accept having to serve gay couples as just one more of the small indignities they think they already have to suffer. Most, though, will eventually decide that it's actually not as much a big deal as they were afraid of.



Progress is not an illusion, it happens, but it is slow and invariably disappointing. - George Orwell

This message is a reply to:
 Message 1043 by Faith, posted 06-07-2018 11:38 PM Faith has not yet responded

  
Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6772
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 5.7


Message 1049 of 1484 (834544)
06-08-2018 9:25 AM
Reply to: Message 1043 by Faith
06-07-2018 11:38 PM


Re: Opinion piece from the Guardian
However, the issue is whether there is an overarching objective standard for marriage or it's all just a matter of people's wanting it for personal reasons.

Oh, well, that train left the station a long time ago.

Well before the Obergefell decision, marriage in the United States underwent a long, sometimes slow transformation into what it has now become. In fact, Kennedy made it very clear in his decision that Obergefell would not have been possible if marriage in the United States had not already changed into what it now is.

The decision in Obegefell that forced the states to recognize same sex marriage did not change marriage; marriage had already change and Obergefell only recognized that change.



Progress is not an illusion, it happens, but it is slow and invariably disappointing. - George Orwell

This message is a reply to:
 Message 1043 by Faith, posted 06-07-2018 11:38 PM Faith has not yet responded

  
Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6772
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 5.7


(1)
Message 1050 of 1484 (834546)
06-08-2018 10:01 AM


A fable
When I was in Africa, I used to frequent this tea shop that was owned by Muslims. They kept their tea shop open during Ramadan to continue serving tea to the Christian customers. One of the workers told me, it's not their place to force their religious beliefs onto other people.


Progress is not an illusion, it happens, but it is slow and invariably disappointing. - George Orwell

  
Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6772
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 5.7


Message 1062 of 1484 (834565)
06-08-2018 2:04 PM
Reply to: Message 1054 by Faith
06-08-2018 12:53 PM


Re: Opinion piece from the Guardian
Nobody is singling out gay marriage except people asking for specifically gay wedding paraphernalia from people whose belief in God forbids gay weddings.

Actually, if you bake a cake for a mixed gendered couple's wedding but not for a same sex couple's wedding, then you are singling out gay people as those who don't get cake at their wedding. I mean, that's pretty much what it means to "single out" someone.

And anti-discrimination laws are based on the idea there are groups of people who have been singled out for unfair treatment and continue to be singled out for unfair treatment, and so the state will specifically recognize them as people whose right to fair treatment will be protected by the state.

-

NOne of this is about refusing service to a class of people, it's specifically about weddings,

Sure it is. It's about whether heterosexual couples get ake for their wedding but gay people have to do without. If you are willing to bake a wedding cake for a mixed gendered couples wedding but you refuse to bake a cake for a same sex couple's wedding you are refusing a service that you ordinarily offer to someone, and refusing the service to someone that Colorado law does not allow you to refuse. Seriously, that is exactly what the words mean.



Progress is not an illusion, it happens, but it is slow and invariably disappointing. - George Orwell

This message is a reply to:
 Message 1054 by Faith, posted 06-08-2018 12:53 PM Faith has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 1064 by Faith, posted 06-08-2018 2:14 PM Chiroptera has not yet responded

  
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