Supreme Court Takes Up Religious Vs LGBTQ Rights—Again

December 5, 2022

supreme court Photo by Ian Hutchinson on Unsplash

The Supreme Court Monday hears arguments in the case of Creative LLC v Elenis, in which a Christian conservative graphics artist objects to designing wedding websites for same-sex couples.

The Court will weigh whether web designer Lorie Smith must offer “speech” for those whom she would otherwise refuse (LGBTQ customers). 

Smith says a ruling against her would force her and other artists—from painters and photographers to writers and musicians—to do work against their faith. Her opponents say if the Court sides with her argument, a range of businesses will be allowed to discriminate, refusing to serve not just LGBTQ, but also Black, Jewish or Muslim customers, interracial or interfaith couples or immigrants, among others.

Creative LLC picks up where Masterpiece Cakeshop v Colorado Civil Rights Commission left off. In that 2018 case the Court ruled in favor of a Christian conservative, saying that Colorado’s constitution had violated its obligation to treat religious expression neutrally when its Civil Rights Commission ordered a baker to serve same-sex weddings.

The case of Creative LLC comes the week after Congress passed the “Respect for Marriage Act,” which requires individual states to recognize another state’s legal same-sex marriages, although it does not set a national requirement that all states must legalize same-sex marriage.

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