Monday, the Supreme Court heard arguments in what could be a landmark court case. Once again, it involves a Christian business owner being pressured by Colorado (same state that’s relentlessly persecuted Christian cake artist Jack Phillips) into designing websites that celebrate same-sex marriage, even though she says that would be compelling speech that violates her religious beliefs.
This is actually a free speech case. Colorado is trying to argue that its very liberal public accommodations law, which usually applies to businesses like hotels and restaurants, can be applied to individual small business owners, forcing them to accept every client and job even if it compels them to violate their religious beliefs, or else be charged with discrimination.
Judging from the grilling that conservative Justices gave to Colorado’s legal counsel, it appears likely that they will side with the business owner and reinforce the First Amendment right to religious freedom that their initial same-sex marriage ruling muddled up. One of the more eye-opening exchanges came when Justice Gorsuch asked if Phillips was forced to go through a “reeducation program.” Colorado’s attorney replied, "No, it was a training to educate him about Colorado law." Gorsuch snapped back, “Some would call that a reeducation program."
It’s time that the SCOTUS spoke clearly and cleaned up the mess it made on the First Amendment with its same-sex marriage decision. And it’s long past time to stop letting liberal bureaucrats, vengeful activists and shyster lawyers abuse the court system to persecute people of faith. This case should make good precedent for when the ludicrously misnamed “Respect for Marriage Act” is signed and immediately challenged as unconstitutional.
Related: The lazy way of presenting this story is to paint Colorado’s argument as “pro-gay rights” and the business owner as “pro-religion.” But this is a very interesting article in which the author sides with the business owner despite being gay himself and not religious.
He explains how allowing the government to force people to engage in speech and feign support for positions that violate their consciences is a two-way street. Those pushing for it aren’t taking into account that whenever the government usurps more power over individuals, it can use that power against anyone, not just people you disagree with.