SCOTUS Ruling in Masterpiece Case is a Missed Opportunity to Unequivocally Affirm the Rights of LGBTQ People
Today’s SCOTUS ruling in the Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission case was narrow in scope, but it’s impact may not be narrow.
In the majority decision the court focused on a narrow interpretation of, and according to the Justice Ginsburg’s dissent, an inadequate interpretation of a free-exercise violation. Instead of unequivocally affirming the rights of LGBTQ people to exist in public life, SCOTUS used a technicality to delay a clear ruling in terms of where individual religious freedom ends and discrimination against others begins.
Unlike Colorado, Arizona does not recognize a state-wide nondiscrimination policy. LGBTQ Arizonan’s live in a state where at any moment our livelihoods and lives could be deeply impacted by discrimination disguised as religious freedom. Today’s ruling did nothing to resolve this issue, in fact it will only extend the debate and controversy around what should be a clear cut civil rights issue.
Equality Arizona will continue to fight for the rights and lives of LGBTQ Arizonans. The human and civil rights and basic dignity and liberty of LGBTQ people is not up for debate. It is deeply disappointing that SCOTUS did not take this opportunity to, beyond any shadow of a doubt, affirm the rights and dignity of LGBTQ people in the United States.