By Kevin Daley
The Supreme Court lifted an order Monday that punished a Christian couple in Oregon who refused to bake a cake for a same-sex wedding, telling a lower court to reconsider the dispute in light of the high court’s decision last year involving another Christian baker in Colorado.
The decision keeps a contentious social dispute over the rights of religious dissenters and LGBT patrons off the high court’s docket in the near term.
“This is a victory for Aaron and Melissa Klein and for religious liberty for all Americans,” said Kelly Shackelford, president of First Liberty Institute, a law firm championing religious freedom that represents the Klein family.
“The Constitution protects speech, popular or not, from condemnation by the government. The message from the court is clear; government hostility toward religious Americans will not be tolerated.”
The Oregon case is in many respects a redux of the 2018 Masterpiece Cakeshop decision, which pertained to Jack Phillips, an evangelical baker in Colorado.
Though the justices found for Phillips because a state panel displayed hostility toward his religious beliefs, the court did not say whether conservative religious believers can cite the First Amendment in refusing to accommodate a same-sex wedding.
Like the Colorado baker, the Kleins say forcing them to create a cake violates their constitutional guarantees of free speech and free exercise of religion.
Monday’s dispute arose in Oregon in 2013 when Aaron and Melissa Klein, who created custom baked goods through their business Sweet Cakes by Melissa, declined to produce a wedding cake for a lesbian couple, Rachel Cryer and Laurel Bowman.
The Kleins are Christians who believe marriage was instituted as a union of one man and one woman.
Cryer and Bowman filed a complaint with a state anti-discrimination panel. In turn, the Kleins argued their actions were protected under the …read more
From:: Daily Signal – Feed