Supreme Court’s Masterpiece Cakeshop Decision Just Kicks the Can Down the Road in Conflict Between Religious Liberty and Homosexual ‘Dignity’

Saturday, June 9th, 2018

“One wonders how the case would have come out if the Colorado Commission had not been overtly hostile to Jack Phillips.”

By William Olson and Herb Titus, first published June 5, 2018, by Restoring Liberty

[On June 4], the Supreme Court ruled in favor of cake maker Jack Phillips in the Masterpiece Cakeshop case. Justice Kennedy wrote the decision for the Court, joined by six other justices, both liberal and conservative. Justices Gorsuch and Alito concurred, Justices Thomas and Gorsuch concurred, Kagan and Breyer concurred, and Justices Ginsburg and Sotomayor dissented.

There is very little principled analysis in any of the Court’s five opinions except for that of Justice Thomas, who concluded that Phillips was denied his freedom of speech.

Justice Kennedy’s majority opinion focused mainly on the despicable treatment Phillips received in front of the Colorado Civil Rights Commission. In particular, Justice Kennedy noted that the Commission ruled against Phillips for his refusal to bake a pro-gay cake, but ruled in favor of three other bakers who refused to bake anti-gay cakes.

The significance of the majority opinion is nicely summed up in its last paragraph: “The outcome of cases like this in other circumstances must await further elaboration in the courts, all in the context of recognizing that these disputes must be resolved with tolerance, without undue disrespect to sincere religious beliefs, and without subjecting gay persons to indignities when they seek goods and services in an open market.”

In other words, this decision is essentially confined to his facts — ruling for Jack Phillips because the Colorado commission was openly hostile towards Phillips’ religious beliefs. Every future case involving such a state “public accommodations” law, however, will be a balancing act, conducted by federal judges, pitting homosexual “dignity” against sincere religious beliefs.

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VIDEO: ‘Activist Mommy’ on Jack Phillips Wedding Cake Case – Homosexual Couple Are the Real Bullies

Sunday, December 17th, 2017

Freedom in the Balance: Will the Government of the United States of America force people of faith like Jack Phillips to use their talents and privately-owned business to honor and serve “marriages” based on immoral homosexual behavior? Click to enlarge. Photo: Alliance Defending Freedom.

Folks, here is a neat video on the Jack Phillips Supreme Court case by Elizabeth Johnston, the “Activist Mommy” despised by the Left because she is an effective and fearless Christian, conservative truth-teller. It strikes me as un-American that our simple freedom as citizens of this nation, founded on religious liberty, to associate with whomever we want and publicly live by our moral and spiritual beliefs now hangs by the thread of the whims of a few Supreme Court Justices.

All eyes are on Justice Anthony Kennedy, who, though appointed by Ronald Reagan, has earned hero status on the pro-LGBTQ Left for his consistent, pro-homosexual record on the Court. Where will Kennedy, who authored the God- and Constitution-defying 2015 Obergefell v. Hodges decision imposing counterfeit “same-sex marriage” on all 50 states, come down on Phillips’ conscience-based refusal to participate through his cake shop in the celebration of disordered homosexual “weddings”? [Read the late Justice Antonin Scalia’s superb dissent on Obergefell HERE.]

Social conservatives warned that legalizing so-called “same-sex marriage” would result in escalating State and cultural oppression against religious people and institutions–ironically, in the name of “civil rights,” “diversity,” and “equality.” Now that is happening with horrific consequences for principled Christians like Phillips and Barronelle Stutzman. The media- and Democratic Party-enabled “Gay” Revolution has advanced to the point where it is now working to effectively criminalize faithful Christians and other moral dissenters by preposterously comparing them to racist bigots and treating them accordingly.

The leading legal crusader for homosexual “marriage,” Evan Wolfson, said, “I’m not in this just to change the law. It’s about changing society.” Indeed. Now the question is: are we going to let the pro-LGBTQ Lobby and the Government destroy our First Amendment liberties in the service of a godless, radical egalitarian agenda that regards the public expression of biblical faithfulness as just one more component of “anti-gay discrimination”? We’ll see, but to say that a lot rides on this case would be an understatement. — Peter LaBarbera, AFTAH; Twitter: @PeterLaBarbera

Alliance Defending Freedom Criticizes Trump’s Religious Liberty Executive Order

Sunday, May 7th, 2017

Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) released the following statement Thursday, attributed to Senior Counsel Gregory S. Baylor, regarding a summary the White House released late Wednesday about an executive order on religious liberty issued by President Trump on the National Day of Prayer, May 4:

“During his campaign, President Trump stated that the first priority of his administration would be to preserve and protect religious liberty. In speeches, he said the Little Sisters of the Poor and other people of faith will always have their religious liberty protected on his watch and will not have to face bullying from the government because of their religious beliefs. Religious voters took him at his word, giving the president a mandate to affirm and protect Americans’ first freedom.

“The current outline of the Religious Liberty Executive Order released by White House officials recalls those campaign promises but leaves them unfulfilled.

“First, no specific relief is offered to families like the Vander Boons in Michigan, who were threatened with the effective closure of their family-run business for simply expressing a religious point of view on marriage that differed from that of the federal government.

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VIDEO: Christian Florist Barronelle Stutzman Loses Case 9-0 at Washington State Supreme Court – Headed to SCOTUS

Sunday, February 19th, 2017
Barronelle_Stutzman_IFI_graphic

Will liberty prevail at the U.S. Supreme Court? Graphic: Illinois Family Institute.

Folks, it looks like the case of Barronelle Stutzman–the Christian florist who was sued by two “marrying” homosexual men and the Washington State Attorney General because she would not create a floral arrangement for their “wedding”–is headed to the U.S. Supreme Court.

On Feb. 16, the Washington State Supreme Court rejected an appeal by Stutzman of a lower court decision and ruled that “the government can force her—and, by extension, other Washingtonians—to create artistic expression and participate in events with which they disagree,” according to Alliance Defending Freedom, which is handling Stutzman’s defense (see more info below video). [Read the court’s decision HERE.]

Below is a background video on Barronelle’s case created by ADF.  You will note from this 2016 court filing that ADF et al are defending Stutzman on “artistic freedom” grounds. We at AFTAH are not attorneys but we do know this: in a free society, anyone–Christian florist, Muslim cake-maker or atheist wedding chair-supplier–should have the liberty not to use their business to celebrate homosexuality-based “marriage,” which we, as Christians, regard as sin on steroids.

We hope that this kind, brave and faithful woman prevails at the Supreme Court. If she doesn’t, you can stop singing that America is the “land of the free.” — Peter LaBarbera, AFTAH  [more background after jump and video]

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Judge Rules Iowa Churches Are Not Subject to Government Control as Places of ‘Public Accomodation’ – CBN News

Wednesday, October 26th, 2016
Judge Stephanie Rose

Judge Stephanie Rose

The following is excepted from CBN News:

Judge Rules Iowa Churches Are Not Subject to Government Control

By Heather Sells, 10-26-16

A federal judge in Iowa has ruled that churches are not “public accommodations” and therefore not subject to government control.

The ruling could prove pivotal as the country considers whether or not houses of worship are subject to public accommodation anti-discrimination laws.

In her ruling, U.S. District Court Judge Stephanie Rose allowed a lawsuit filed by the Fort Des Moines Church of Christ to continue. The church filed suit in objection to the Iowa Civil Rights Commission applying a state civil rights law to churches.

In light of the new ruling, the church is dismissing its lawsuit.

“The court cut off this unconstitutional power grab by clarifying that the law does not apply to churches,” ADF [Alliance Defending Freedom] attorney Steve O’Ban said.

Judge Rose noted in her ruling that “state and federal courts have held that churches and the programs they host are not places of public accommodation.”

However, LGBT activists often claim churches and other houses of worship are places of public accommodation in order to force them to follow government anti-discrimination laws…. [Story continues at CBN News]

 

Colorado Christian Baker Jack Phillips – Who Refused to Make Homosexual ‘Wedding’ Cake – Loses in Appeals Court Ruling

Friday, August 14th, 2015
Lakewood, CO baker Jack Phillips has lost 40 percent of his business after closing down the wedding cake part of his business so as not to be forced to make a cake celebrating a homosexual-sin-based "wedding."

Victim of Homo-Fascism: Lakewood, CO baker Jack Phillips has lost 40 percent of his business after closing down the wedding cake part of his business so as not to be forced to make a cake celebrating a homosexual-sin-based “wedding.”  To read an in-depth 2014 article documenting the battle between freedom of conscience and homosexual “rights,” go HERE. Read the Appeals Court ruling against Phillips HERE.

[Read the Colorado Court of Appeals ruling against Jack Phillips HERE]

Folks, we suspect that ‘homo-fascism’ of the sort that these two homosexual activists are perpetrating against Lakewood, Colorado baker Jack Phillips, owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop, will prevail when it is appealed to the state’s supreme court. The question is: when will the U.S. Supreme Court finally take a case like this (or the Huguenins’ photography case in New Mexico) pitting religious liberty against homosexuality-based “rights.” That decision ultimately will either protect religious freedom in these United States of America or deal it a critical blow. Meanwhile, we’re losing these cases at the lower courts (and state supreme courts), while the ACLU, which purports to defend “individual rights,” is celebrating the negation of Phillips’ freedom not to violate his strong Christian beliefs. [See CBN video below, and ADF background on the case HERE.]

Is it just a coincidence that homosexualism and “progressivism” are leading the assault on religious freedom in America? Hardly. This case isn’t about “rights” or “discrimination” or “equality.” It’s about homosexual activists’ resentment of God and biblical truth and their obsessive drive to compel others to honor their sinful sexual behavior–perhaps to quell their guilty conscience–using the force of law. Apparently many LGBT activists and allied “progressives” are willing to kill liberty itself to accomplish that goal. —  — Peter LaBarbera, AFTAH: @PeterLaBarbera

_______________________

 

“[F]or citizens like Jack Phillips, the court has created a novel exception to the First Amendment — you’re entitled to believe, but not entitled to act on those beliefs. You’re not free if your beliefs are confined to your mind. What makes America unique is our freedom to peacefully live out these beliefs. “–ADF attorney for Jack Phillips

The local CBS4 News reports:

‘The Ruling Is Wrong’ Says Baker After Losing Appeal Of Wedding Cake Case To Gay Couple

August 13, 2015 1:48 PM

DENVER (CBS4) – The Colorado Court of Appeals has sided with a gay couple in the fight over a wedding cake saying a baker cannot cite religious beliefs in refusing service.

Lakewood baker Jack Phillips, who owns Masterpiece Cakeshop, refused to make a wedding cake for Charlie Craig and David Mullins in 2012 saying it was against his religious beliefs. The couple married in Massachusetts but planned to celebrate in Colorado.

Craig and Mullins then sued Phillips and the court found that he violated the law preventing businesses from discrimination based on sexual orientation.

Colorado_Backer_Case_Gay_Activist_David_Mullins_CBS4

Honor Our (Phony, Sin-Based) “Marriage” or We’ll Sue You! Homosexual activists David Mullins (left) and Charlie Craig discuss their court victory against Christian baker Jack Phillips with local CBS news. Click to enlarge. Go here to view CBS4 broadcast online.

Phillips tried to appeal that order arguing that it violated his First Amendment rights. Both sides made their case to the Court of Appeals in July and the court took until now to rule in favor of the couple.

“We feel like the court today affirmed the argument that we have been making that the treatment we received at Masterpiece Cakeshop was both illegal and wrong,” Mullins said.
“The court basically validated what we’ve been fighting this whole time,” Craig said.

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