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The Supreme Court today ruled narrowly in favor of the Christian baker who had refused to bake a wedding cake for a homosexual wedding.
A nice win that’ll hopefully provide the foundation for a more sweeping victory later, but this isn’t the home run righties were hoping for. Conservatives wanted the Court to hold that business owners have a First Amendment right to free exercise of religion that trumps antidiscrimination laws, at least with respect to catering gay weddings. What the Court actually held is that *in this particular case* Colorado’s antidiscrimination commission was so openly hostile to Jack Phillips’s religious claims, dismissing his beliefs as insincere and holding him to a double standard that pro-gay business owners weren’t held to, that they violated his particular right to free exercise.
Though the decision’s interpretation was narrow, the court ruled 7-2 in favor of the baker. As the article notes,
[This narrow] ruling may have been as far as Anthony Kennedy (who’s written all of the Court’s landmark gay-rights rulings over the past 25 years) was willing to go. It’s so narrow, in fact, that it produced a not-so-narrow majority: Breyer and Kagan felt comfortable joining the conservatives because all the Court ended up deciding here, really, is that business owners’ free-exercise rights should at least be *considered* when applying antidiscrimination laws against them. In that sense the decision is a solid win for the right.
In other words, the leftist judges were forced to admit that religious people have a right to their beliefs. What a concept!