Why the Supreme Court made a narrow ruling in the Colorado baker case
The Supreme Court ruled on Monday in favor of a Colorado baker who refused to design a wedding cake for a same-sex couple. But the decision did not resolve the issue of whether a business may even invoke religion to refuce service to LGBTQ people. The 7-2 decisions was a significant but narrowly tailored victory for advocates of religious freedom. Amna Nawaz reports.
A Christian baker in Colorado who turned away a same-sex couple shouldn't be penalized. That was the judgment from the U.S. Supreme Court today in one of the highest-profile cases of this term. The 7-2 decision was a significant, but narrowly tailored victory for advocates of religious freedom.
The court ruled in favor of Colorado baker Jack Phillips, who refused to design a wedding cake for a same-sex couple. Advocates on both sides reacted to the news this morning:
Justice Kennedy's opinion can be summed up as tolerance is a two-way street. Religious freedom is to be respected, just as he's respect gay rights decisions in many other contexts.
We are saddened, but we're not shocked. And, really, the case is a loss, but it's a narrow loss. It's a limited loss.
Six years ago, when Charlie Craig and David Mullins were planning their wedding, they visited Phillips' cake shop.
As soon as we sat down with the owner, he asked who the cake was for and we told him it was for us.
So, I'm thinking, OK, how can I politely tell these guys that's an event that I can't participate in? I said, I will make you a birthday cake, cookies, brownies. I will sell you anything in the shop. It's just an event that I can't create a cake for.
When we left the bakery, we cried together. You know, it was really emotional. It was really sad.
Last year, Phillips told the "NewsHour" that designing the wedding cake would have violated his religious belief that marriage is between a man and a woman.
All I'm trying to do is use my art, use my craft to create cakes to help people celebrate special occasions in their life. I never turn anybody away, just events that I turn away.
But the couple claimed the baker discriminated against them based on their sexual orientation.
He turned us away because of who we are and because of who we love.
Mullins and Craig brought their complaint to the Colorado Civil Rights Commission, who sided with the couple. But today, justice Anthony Kennedy disagreed. He ruled the commission didn't act as a neutral party, that it had been hostile to the cake maker's religious beliefs.
The decision didn't resolve the issue of whether a business may ever invoke religion to refuse service to gays and lesbians.
We will talk about the significance of the decision after the news summary.
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