SPONSORED POST: 75 Organizations Join To Battle For LGBT Civil Rights As Supreme Court Hears Masterpiece

SPONSORED POST from Open To All:

In the context of a nation rocked by racial discrimination at levels unseen in decades, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments on December 5th in a case that could gut not only state nondiscrimination laws but also erode the Civil Rights Act—and turn back the clock to a time when businesses could tell people, “we don’t serve your kind here.”

In response, a broad coalition of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT), civil rights, racial justice and allied organizations have launched Open to All, a national campaign to focus attention on the far-reaching, dangerous risks of the Masterpiece Cakeshop vs. Colorado Civil Rights Commission case.

In 2012, a gay couple was denied service when they attempted to purchase a cake for their wedding reception. The bakery argues that businesses with a “creative” element should be allowed to refuse service to some people in violation of laws against discrimination. Yet despite the high stakes of the case, it has received relatively little media attention.

“If the Supreme Court gives businesses a constitutional right to discriminate, it would have implications that reach far beyond bakeries,” said Ineke Mushovic, executive director of the Movement Advancement Project (MAP). “If the Court carves out a broad exemption in nondiscrimination laws for so-called ‘creative’ enterprises, we could see an explosion of discrimination by restaurants, hair salons, event venues, funeral parlors and more. And the impact of such a decision wouldn’t be limited to LGBT people; it could be used to allow discrimination against people of color, women, minority faiths, people with disabilities, and others.”

The Open to All campaign is supported by more than 75 organizations, including MAP, the ACLU, Color of Change, the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, the Anti-Defamation League, the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund (MALDEF), the National Black Justice Coalition, the National Center for Transgender Equality, the Human Rights Campaign, GLAAD, and Freedom for All Americans. A full list of supporting organizations can be found here.

In addition to the ads, the site includes two new MAP resources (link) on the damaging implications of the Masterpiece case, Understanding Masterpiece Cakeshop vs. Colorado Civil Rights Commission and Issue Brief: The Broader Danger of the Masterpiece Cakeshop Case.

The site also features a social media graphics sharing section where users can spread the word and build conversations about the campaign through one-click sharing to Facebook, Twitter and other platforms—as well as a comprehensive list of amicus briefs filed in support of the couple who was discriminated against in this case. Among them, briefs filed by: leading racial justice legal and advocacy organizations, 211 members of Congress, 15 faith and civil rights organizations, 37 leading businesses and organizations, and many others.

Open to All is nationwide public engagement campaign to build understanding and discussion about the importance of our nation’s nondiscrimination laws—and the bedrock principle that when businesses open their doors to the public, they should be Open to All. For more information and resources, visit Open To All. You can also find the campaign on social media at @OpentoAllofUS on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.


NOTE TO READERS: This important sponsored post will remain on JMG’s front page for the next 48 hours.

  • Ninja0980

    It won’t stop with just businesses.
    Pretty soon clerks will pull this same crap, as will government agencies etc.
    Make no mistake, they want to chip away at marriage equality and our other rights bit by bit just like they have with abortion.
    And if Kennedy goes for the bigots argument tomorrow they will be able to just that.

    • Leo

      All these op-eds arguing Kennedy wants the issue “settled” but Pandora’s box will open if he’s too lenient with his language in favor of the cake-maker which is what I have a bad feeling will happen.

      The court’s deliberately left so many open questions from recent rulings in so many cases to revisit them in later cases I can’t help but think he’ll do the same here.

      All hell will break loose in this scenario – it won’t be obvious at first but mark my words. The examples we’ll hear of rejected public accommodation will be numerous.

      • Ninja0980

        Yup.

      • Christian1234567

        There are tons of examples of rejected public accommodation from the 29 states where LGBT people are still unconstitutionally denied equal protection. In those states, it’s not illegal to fire people, deny them housing, loans, nonemergency medical care, public accommodation and more simply because they are–or someone thinks they are–LGBT.

    • Todd20036

      It’s not about cakes.

      It’s not about drinking fountains.

      It’s not about bus seats.

      It’s not about bathrooms.

      It’s not even about protecting children. (ask Roy Moore)

      It’s about discriminating against a minority people feel icky about.

      Ask the Jews in 1930s Germany, blacks in America, LBGTs everywhere, Irish in 1800s America, etc.

      • MT YVR

        And isn’t it fascinating that in every case the “people feel icky” sensation is manufactured.

        • teeveedub

          I have a test for this. Ask the people who feel icky the following question:

          “When was the last time you invited a ____________ into your home for dinner?”

          If the answer is “uh, well, um, I guess, never,” then those people are drastically underexposed to the world around them. The ickiness factor is self-imposed.

          • wmforr

            “Hate the sin, love the sinner, but don’t invite him home for dinner.”

        • wmforr

          Yes, the obvious. Years ago, I answered a bigot who thought “the idea of sex between two men is disgusting” with “I know a man and woman who are grossly obese. Every time I try to picture them having sex, I throw up. Therefore, they shouldn’t be allowed to marry. And by the way, why to you think about two people in the middle of a sex act whenever the question of civil rights comes up?” I got no reply, of course.

  • netxtown

    I wonder if it was Jeebus or one of the 12 who proclaimed ‘no blacks. no jews. no gays.’ …?

    • Reality.Bites

      Pretty sure it was Carlos and Carmen Vidal.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o_lPHjn0Aqk

      • netxtown

        but…but…isn’t that the vid graphics from Knock on Wood?

        • Reality.Bites

          Damned if I know. It was the only one I found that wasn’t just a static image, so I went with it.

          • netxtown

            ok…that means you – me – at least one night at a retro-disco…LOL!

          • Reality.Bites

            It better be a tea dance if you expect me to be awake.

          • netxtown

            Tea dance it is! Last time I was up after midnight…I had to pee.

          • Reality.Bites

            I’m recovering from surgery and yesterday I had a brunch, so I was out for several hours. Ended up going to bed at 8:30 last night, up at 4:30. 8 hours of sleep is a lot for me – I rarely sleep more than 6, so that shows how tired I was.

            A friend invited me to come along with him and his BF on NY eve to some huge leather circuit party, and I declined. (My boyfriend works all the holiday and non-holiday special nights like Halloween, Pride, New Year’s eve, so he knew I wouldn’t be with him)

          • netxtown

            ain’t this getting older shit just grand?

          • Reality.Bites

            Well I’m right at the median age for what I had, but it’s not an age-related thing per se.

            This was my first operation, and it seems I take after my father in terms of recovery.

            It’s amazing how much hospitals work against recovery. The bed and chair in the room add to pain instead of relieving it. I was operated on Thursday afternoon (the 23rd), home Saturday afternoon. Took my last pain pill Sunday at 2:00 AM. Just being on furniture that wasn’t actively trying to hurt me did wonders!

          • Galvestonian

            Yeah … when I had open heart surgery they kept on waking me up at odd nighttime hours to draw blood and do a couple of invasive pokes and prods with some odd beeping and clicking, honking and generally obnoxious noises that sort of kept you awake until dawn and any naps or attempts at some kind of sleep were defeated at every turn … oh, they were polite and nice about it — but man … after someone carves you up you really need some shut eye — especially since they’re jazzing you with heavy duty pain meds.

          • netxtown

            and I certainly hope your recovery goes smoothly! (I got a tea dance in the balance! 🙂

        • Joseph Miceli

          That is…without a doubt…one of my most favorite songs ever! Thank you!

    • lymis

      Please. Everyone knows Jesus would never have hung out with Jews. He’s famous for that.

      /s

  • JoeMyGod

    Note To Readers: This important sponsored message from our allies will remain on JMG’s front page for the next 48 hours. As longtime readers know, we very rarely accept sponsored posts here on JMG, but rather obviously, Masterpiece is the most important LGBT civil rights case we’ll likely see for years.

    • Dazzer

      Good call, Mr Jervis.

      • Frances

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    • j.martindale

      Did you read the despicable editorial in the NY Times today supporting the baker? The writers lied about the facts of the case, saying the whole issue relates to whether the baker should have to decorate the cake specially for gays–you know, erect penises on the toppers of the grooms, I guess.

      https://www.nytimes.com/2017/12/04/opinion/first-amendment-wedding-cake.html?action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=opinion-c-col-right-region&region=opinion-c-col-right-region&WT.nav=opinion-c-col-right-region

      Here is what the gay guy involved had to say. “We asked for a cake,” Mr. Craig said. “We didn’t ask for a piece of art or for him to make a statement for us. He simply turned us away because of who we are.”

      People need to complain to the Times about misrepresenting this case.

      • Nic Peterson

        Same NYT that gave us the grocery shopping polite Nazi. How unexpected.

        • j.martindale

          They did have a much better editorial today, I will admit, written by an ACLU attorney.

        • Monica

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      • kingeider

        David Brooks said the couple was just being impolite. He’s another enabler

    • narutomania

      Aye, Cap’n. We’re with you on this. Not only an important civil rights case for LGBTQ citizens, but for all American citizens.

      Once they take away our civil rights, it will be that much easier to take away the rights of another group, and then another. This is why I will never understand why latinos (both in spite of and because of their history with the catholic church) do not join the right side of this fight.

  • BeaverTales

    I will definitely donate to Open to All…it’s quite literally the very least I can do.

    I’ll leave the thoughts and prayers for others.

  • JoeMyGod
    • Ninja0980

      Not only that but the gutting of other civil rights law would begin.
      Say goodbye to the 1964 Civil rights act.

    • Christian1234567

      Right now, 29 states do not include sexual orientation and gender in their civil rights laws. However, it’s not considered a “right to discriminate,” even though discrimination against LGBT is legal.

  • JoeMyGod
  • Gustav2
    • charemor

      As that jackass is working on food, shouldn’t he be wearing a hairnet?

  • Pete Wascher

    important case, for sure. there must be big money behind the cake people for this to get this far.

    • Ninja0980

      ADF gets up to $50 million a year in grants so yea, they have $$$$.

  • Michael R

    The first video states the basic fact :

    ” Just because a business serves the public doesn’t mean they share all of their customers beliefs ”

    If they manage to find a way around this they are just wrong .

  • JoeMyGod
  • JoeMyGod
  • JoeMyGod
  • JoeMyGod
  • Karl Dubhe II

    So, they’ll announce the decision in 6 months if it’s a good ruling; 5 minutes if it’s a bad one?

    Well, this will not end.

    • Reality.Bites

      A decision is only quick when it’s a decision not to hear a case, or emergency stays. It should be six months or so either way.

      • Oscarlating Wildely

        (I’d laugh my tits off if they refused to hear the case at this point but I don’t think that is going to happen.)

        • Reality.Bites

          no, that decision would have come months ago.

          If you remember, there were a bunch of stays in marriage cases while they were waiting for dissent among the appeals courts. And finally they let them all lapse and a whole bunch of states got marriage between the prop 8 decision and Obergefell.

          At that point, of course, there was a clear signal how they’d rule in Obergefell. Almost anything is possible in how they rule, but they’re not idiots. They would not let thousands marry if there was a chance ultimately many states would never gain that right.

          As far as I know, there are no conflicting appeals courts rulings on Wedding Cakes. It’s interesting they took this so early in the process. I’d like to think they did so in order to get this settled before Trump wreaks more havoc.

          Regardless though, if we lose it’s still somewhat of a paper loss. People will not have to be as polite about their bigotry, but when Nazis are marching in the streets, wedding cakes are not your biggest problem. I very much want this settled in our favour, but primarily because either way it’s an indicator of how far THIS court is willing to go and how fucked we are or aren’t.

          • coram nobis

            It’s not just about wedding cakes. What’s to stop an ER nurse from refusing admittance to, say, the spouse, if not the victim because she has religious scruples? What’s to stop a boss or co-workers getting rid of employees, or a landlord evicting a tenant, because Jesus Christ told him to?

          • Priya Lynn

            There was a trans woman that died because the EMTs refused to help her when they realized she was trans.

  • JoeMyGod

    If you are on Twitter, make sure to follow @OpenToAllOfUs for updates.

  • Gigi

    SCOTUS voted in favor of SSM then they should vote against the Talibangelists, right?

    • Ninja0980

      Kennedy has not always been an ally when it comes to private groups etc. as the Boy Scouts showed.
      Plus, he wrote the option in Hobby Lobby so the fear is he might rule in favor of the businesses this time.

      • Oscarlating Wildely

        Hobby Lobby was the shit stain of humanity.

        • AmeriCanadian

          And Citizens United.

          • Oscarlating Wildely

            Shit stain for each cheek.

          • Ninja0980

            Yup.
            As much as he has done for our community, Kennedy is still a dick in many other ways.

      • Reality.Bites

        There is, perhaps, a difference in his opinion of what a business must pay for versus how they treat customers.

        Would he have upheld a Hobby Lobby policy demanding women sign a pledge to never have an abortion before they’re allowed to shop there, or to post signs that women who’ve had abortions may not shop there?

        Nor do I think he would have voted to allow HL to discriminate in its hiring and other HR practices against women who’ve used or use birth control.

        • fuow

          You’re Canadian is showing. On the topic of freedom of speech (which this case is about, not religion, and, yes, sigh, I know it’s really about christers bashing gays), Justice Kennedy has always sided with freedom of speech. We’re in real trouble here in the US.

      • Steverino

        Kennedy is clearly a corporatist, and that is the worry. However, he did write in Hobby Lobby that the decision was not to be interpreted as allowing the business to engage in illegal discrimination. It seems he would have to square that with his opinion in Masterpiece, absent some rhetorical gymnastics.

    • fuow

      I wish.

  • Oscarlating Wildely

    There is only one point that I saw some references of that I wish would be noted more. As we obviously know, LGBTQ people are not just adults. When anti-trans regulations were changed in schools (thank DeVos you miserable bitch) trans kids suffered. This case will make it legal to discriminate against two girls at a formal wear for their prom, an ice cream shop to kick out a boy who just dared to hold his boyfriend’s hand, and if reality was not wretched enough in far too many settings for LGBTQ kids, this just might make it even worse. And that is evil.

    • lymis

      Further, how long will it be, if it’s held to be a violation of either Freedom of Speech or Freedom of Religion for a cake baker to be forced to sell to a gay couple, for that precedent to be used to declare that government workers have a similar right to deny services or benefits to anyone they disapprove of?

  • AmeriCanadian

    I believe the only thing we have going for us is that the makeup of SCOTUS is exactly the same as it was when Obergefell v. Hodges was heard and decided, meaning it all hinges on Kennedy. He has to know the ramifications of Masterpiece.

    • Ninja0980

      If he doesn’t, then he’s an idiot.

      • AmeriCanadian

        It’s going to come down to how much Kennedy favors human rights vs. business. His history gives no indication as to which way he will decide.

  • Geekydee

    The crux of their argument is based on false assumptions. The government is not forcing you to violate your religious beliefs, as they are not telling you to be come L or G or B or T or whatever. If you do not follow every tenet of your belief, that makes you an unbeliever and thus not eligible for their protections. It’s all or nothing, If you were a Mennonite or Amish or any other devout sect, you might have a glimmer of hope. It’s all or nothing, sunshine.

  • Tomcat

    I hear there were civil rights laws passed back in 1968.
    Just wondering when these might go into effect.

    • glass

      Unless we shut down that criminal organization known as “the republicans”, it won’t be until 3048.

    • Hue-Man

      “It’s too early to talk about that.”

  • Rebecca Gardner
    • Tomcat

      Don’t worry Grassley, taxpayers will make up the loss by doing without major needs.

    • Gustav2

      You mean the Republicans wrote a tax bill favoring Gay men who don’t drink or go to the movies?

      #Whodathunkit?

      (someone please tweet this)

      • Reality.Bites

        I only know one who fits that bill, so I’ll be sure to give him the good news.

    • Michael R

      How do these people have the nerve to show their fucking faces in public ,
      let alone have successful careers ?

      • leastyebejudged

        lol, have you seen the people that elected him ?

    • netxtown

      Sounds like there is some ‘experience’ in his tongue wagging. Now it is clear he will pay for sex – while drunk – while watching porn.

      • Steverino

        My thought, exactly. Conservatives project.

    • Skeptical_Inquirer

      I’m so sick of people demanding poor people always be frugal and scrupulous while they eat Wagyu steaks and drink Dom Perignon.

      I swear people like Grassley would bitch if a poor mom got some ice cream for her kids because it’s their birthday. This is a sadistic streak in the rich & powerful in that they not only want to hoard $$$ but also any and all pleasure.

      • Snarkaholic

        THEN they turn around and bitch that Millennials, etc., are ruining countless industries by not buying those products and services.

      • marshlc

        It’s not just the rich and powerful. I’m remembering a tirade I once heard because a couple on welfare bought frilly socks for their toddler.

    • -M-

      Sure Chuck, a free handout to the heirs of a few people with more than five million dollars in assets makes so much more sense than lowering taxes on poor people so that they can save and improve their economic standing.

    • charemor

      Write the old fucker and tell him that he is an asshole. I did and even though I know he will not personally read it, someone in his office will.

    • BobSF_94117

      The only time people “invest” is when they buy at an initial public offering or some other sale of company stock or ownership. All the rest is just rewarding each other for owning bits of a company.

    • JCF

      Grassley: “Let Them Eat Cake! (Except If You’re Gay)”

  • j.martindale

    Years ago, the Supreme Court upheld a California case in which some Christian Scientists permitted a child to die rather than get life saving medical care. The California decision said this:

    “Although one is free to believe what one will,” the Court said,
    “religious freedom ends when one’s conduct offends the law by, for
    example, endangering a child’s life.”

    The same holds true for cases where so-called religious people claim their religion permits them to violate laws protecting gays from discrimination. Conduct must be separated from belief when one talks about freedom of religion under the First Amendment.

    • Tomcat

      Looking through the eyes of normal that would be correct, however politics…

      • David Walker

        …and religion…

        • EdM01

          …and on top of religion, religious psychoses…

          • Galvestonian

            … and Republicans.

    • fuow

      Hate to tell you this, but that’s not how this case will go down. For starters, the christers were smart (and our enemies are smart, heck, they even vote): This is a case on ‘Right of Free Speech’, not religion.
      Oh, sure, I know it is all about christers bashing gays. We all know that. But the argument they’re waging is one Justice Kennedy is really, really prone to accept.
      We’re fucked dry without a kiss.

      • PeedeResistance

        They have no argument. That is precisely the point. None of us knows what Kennedy will produce this time, but the Xtofascists’ specious drivel about ‘artistry’ and ‘self-expression’ is patently absurd and legally bankrupt.

      • lymis

        Sorry, but that doesn’t work.

        If you bake a cake and sell it to a straight couple and call that speech, then how is baking the same cake and selling it to a gay couple a different kind of speech?

        And if it somehow is, how is that different from turning away a black customer, or a Jewish customer, or a female customer?

        • fuow

          I am not saying I agree with any of the mother-fucking asswipes’ arguments! I am, however, saying that their arguments are such that Justice Kennedy is quite likely to accept them.
          We really, really have to learn to accept that our enemies, though evil, perverted child fuckers, also have a far better sense of both how to elect bad people and how to have them rule in their favor. Until we do that, we will continue to lose.

    • Renfield

      And we will be back to letting doctors not treat gay people because Jesus, or something.

      • Christian1234567

        It’s not illegal for doctors to deny non-emergency medical care to LGBT people (or their children) in 29 states. I would hope that SCOTUS would rule that LGBT people are a protected class and thus need to be added to federal civil rights laws. I doubt that they will, however, as they were very, very careful not to do so when ruling on marriage equality.

      • wmforr

        …except if they use electroshock therapy–what Lou Read’s parent submitted him to to cure bisexuality.

    • 2patricius2

      And so many of the court decisions ordering marriage equality, pointed out that opposition to marriage equality was based on religious animus. That’s exactly what is at issue here: whether people can use their religious animus to discriminate against their fellow citizens, even when the laws governing their licenses to serve the public, specify say they cannot discriminate against the classes of people to whom they want to refuse service.

  • Michael R

    This is a big test for Gorsuch , who promised to follow precedent .
    I am not optimistic .

    • AmeriCanadian

      You’re not serious are you?

    • Tomcat

      He meant president, not precedent.

      • JCF

        Points (ugh)

    • JT

      Gosuck is too busy sucking off the power elites.

      • Snarkaholic

        …while denouncing gay people every time he comes up for air.

        • EdM01

          His gay friends must be *former* friends now, then.

          • BobSF_94117

            They were probably ex-gay all along.

  • People4Humanity

    Marcia Coyle, one of the lead writers for Supreme Court Watch, weighs in on this issue:

    Coyle’s Cases to Watch

    Got two minutes? Click below to watch Marcia break down this week’s arguments in Masterpiece Cakeshop and the New Jersey sports gambling cases.

    https://www.law.com/supremecourtbrief/sites/nationallawjournal/2017/12/01/coyles-cases-to-watch-masterpiece-cakeshop-and-nj-sports-gambling/?et=&bu=&cn=&src=&pt=&slreturn=20171104085505

    • leastyebejudged

      It’s a subscriber’s only link.

      • Joe in PA

        you can still watch the vid.

    • coram nobis

      She’ll probably be on the NewsHour, maybe today, certainly on Tuesday.

      Let’s also see what Linda Greenhouse at NYT has to say.

  • JT

    “But there’s no difference between the candidates.”

    Thanks, purists! You fucking egocentric assholes!

    • Todd20036

      I despise them even worse than the Nazis.

      • JT

        There’s something especially bad about self-righteous enablers of evil.

  • killreligion

    Great effort. Two comments: 1) this “hasn’t been reported broadly” line is dangerous. We as a society continue to make excuses for lazy citizenship. It has been reported on a lot. If it has not taken off in the non news channels of social clicking TOO BAD. We need to start shaming people for bad civics and claiming ignorance because their “friends” on Facebook aren’t informing them and 2) George will the conservative wrote an op ed supporting our side but wrapped with the claim that there should be no case because there are plenty of other cake shops-the couple is bullying the bigot! We have more potential allies then we think but need to be clear that we are not bullying, we are defending rights that left undefended will be lost and society can thank us later for doing this for many more than just marrying gays.

    • Jerry Kott

      Since ignorance is now celebrated as an US Virtue, you can’t shame shameless people. You can change their perspective but they wear their shamelessness as a badge of courage.

  • joe ho

    It will be interesting to see how the Slurandon/Stein justice (i.e., Gorsuch) rules here.

    • fuow

      Against our rights. That’s how he’ll rule. As will four other Justices.
      Thanks again, all you gay men who stayed home or voted ‘Green’ or wrote in Bernie to teach us Democrats a lesson.
      Not a hair’s breadth of difference between Hillary and Trump, right?
      Seriously, folks – in case you haven’t been following this, we’re about to become the only group of humans against whom business and services discrimination will be made legal across all 50 states.

      • canoebum

        While what you say is true, we do have allies now, in significant numbers over years past. We will picket those businesses and our allies will decline to use their services. Being a known anti-gay business will cause many to shut down or weaken their ability to obtain credit and other necessary services. A crunch time always comes around for every business. When that time comes for the known anti-gay ones, they will have fewer resources to withstand the hard times. We have market power. We will use it. The bigots will end up on the losing end where they belong.

        • fuow

          Oh, yes, we will fight back where we can. This, however, is only the beginning of a gigantic rollback on gay rights.
          The christers’ aim is clear: In any conflict between a far-right conservative ‘small-o orthodox’ Christian and a gay/transgender person, we flip a coin:
          Heads: The christer wins.
          Tails: The gay/transgender person loses.
          This is going to open the floodgates and make it legal to discriminate against us at all levels of business, services and government. Housing, medical, emergency support – everything.

          • canoebum

            To borrow a phrase from “Mommie Dearest”, “Don’t fuck with me, fellas! This is not my first time at the rodeo.” Our other message will be a little more familiar, “I’ll get you my pretty, and your little dog too!” If the Christianists win this one, for a time they’ll gloat. But in the end, they won’t be happy with the results. Admiral Yamamoto had it right, “I believe all we have done is to awaken a sleeping giant and fill him with a terrible resolve.” We will make them rue the day they brought this case.

      • wow you hillarybots just won’t leave it alone. 2016 is officially almost 2 years ago. do you have anything to contribute other than “it’s all Bernie and the billions of leftist followers who ruined it all for Us?” like, ever? srsly dood. tired and stale.

        • or i can with Facts, which just irritate all of you. 52% of white women voted for the traitor. the majority of his electoral support came from above average affluent suburbs. the media spent 99% of its time denigrating bernie when the primaries were going on. OK, that last was polemic, but i hope you can understand the greater point.

          i am not a Green party member and never have been. i realized what they really are when i was first in college, more than 20 years ago. i guess it’s a big surprise to some, but not to me. meanwhile, my vote for the Bman in the primaries? truly it was only about voting *against* Wall Street. yeah, i went there. and no, 3% of the electorate didn’t cost her the Presidency. russian interference and the national level Democratic party’s inattention to the voting process did.

          • adding, it’s sort of amazing that a white old jewish guy from nowhere almost beat the Democratic party’s designated Leader, with almost no money, by political standards. and that the main force of support for him came from… the young.

          • William

            …and Russian bots screwing with the election.

        • MUELLER KNOWS

          Truth hurts, eh?

        • Dom Saunders

          You’re on JoeMyGod, Chicago. Most of the regulars here are precisely that, to the point they’ll even shout down people who still voted for her regardless because we still knew what was at stake, like me. Hell, some people here even blocked me JUST because I was somewhat critical, even when we agreed on literally everything else.

        • Priya Lynn

          “wow you hillarybots just won’t leave it alone. 2016 is officially almost 2 years ago.”.

          Its the election that counts and that’s much closer to one year than two years ago.

  • fuow

    Thanks joe.

  • TJay229

    Ooo I can’t wait till the audio is posted. I usually follow SCOTUSblog, Chris Geinder and a few others for play by play on twitter

    • Jean-Marc in Canada

      Oh to be a fly on that wall. We will be listening.

  • Achilles Tsakiridis

    Just wait until Gay Hairstylists refuse service to heterosexuals ….

    • Tomcat

      They have too much class for that.

      • charemor

        But they can make them look like shit.

    • Dom Saunders

      The world would literally burn. -_-

    • Friday

      Of course the Christian Right “religious freedom” measures make sure that only ‘beliefs’ that align with *theirs* are ‘protected.’ The Republicans tried passing some kind of religious exemption laws that had more neural wording, (knowing that the Christian Right are basically the only ones that actually *do* want to discriminate) …but the Christians rejected *this* because it didn’t elevate them and only them above the law.

  • Despite “Open to All” – it seems a stretch to try to broaden the issue to other minorities – not that it couldn’t happen, but the religious exemption to discriminate is so specifically targeted to LGBT’s because, according to the religionists, we are biblical pariahs and “sinners” by virtue of our very existence. The religionists will never be convinced to accept us, our relationships or our marriages as legitimate. Adulterers or women who’ve had abortions, or heterosexuals living together are not likely to be celebrating those circumstances, nor are they as “obvious” to a business owner as are same-sex couples. While some biblical claims can be made against racial or ethnic minorities, most do not hold up among mainstream religions. There is real danger that individual wing-nuts with “deeply held religious beliefs” (whatever that means) in any capacity to serve the public, will use a ruling in their favor to blatantly discriminate primarily against LGBT’s. This might have been avoided had sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression and marital status been included in the civil rights act or a new civil rights act.

    • fuow

      Well put. Of course, this might all have been avoided had we voted in the 2010 and 2014 midterms, not to mention in 2016.
      But, heh – moral victories are far more important and, after all, if elections changed anything, they wouldn’t be held, right?
      (This being the Internet and this, my very first post ever, guess I’d better add a heaping helping of /snark to that).

    • BobSF_94117

      I think you underestimate how much some people in the Bible Belt do not like mixed-race marriages.

    • Friday

      The way the actual anti-LGBT laws are phrased actually says that people whose religious views about sex and marriage and anti-LGBTness are to be exempt from obeying all civil rights laws, so there’s absolutely nothing that would stop them from discriminating against people of any minority, or in interracial or interfaith marriages or whatever they feel like.

  • Snarkaholic

    Fine…no full rights = our wallets not fully open at tax time.

  • Ragnar Lothbrok
  • When the NCLR and Lambda are on board, I am too. that’s kind of a “period.” sort of statement.

  • edrex
  • juanjo54

    I am reminded of the comments of Charles Napier when the Hindu priests came to him complaining that the British laws oppressed the religious practice among certain Hindu sects of burning widows alive on the funeral pyre of their deceased husbands:

    “Be it so. This burning of widows is your custom; prepare the funeral pile. But my nation has also a custom. When men burn women alive we hang them, and confiscate all their property. My carpenters shall therefore erect gibbets on which to hang all concerned when the widow is consumed. Let us all act according to national customs.”

  • JWC

    :Murica is still chocking on the word they can’t or won’t pronounce “Obergefell”

  • Geekydee

    Quick lawyer type question:would Shelley v. Kraemer from a 1948 SCOTUS decision have any bearing on this decision? Just curious

  • Jack

    I’ve lost count of the number of Christians who have claimed “I don’t know any religion that counts being black as being a sin.”

    • The_Wretched

      They need a class in US history. Jim Crowe wasn’t that long ago.

    • Dom Saunders

      Christianity. Christianity. Mormonism (DEFINITELY Mormonism), and…well, Christianity and all its derivatives thereof.

  • Renfield

    “could gut not only state nondiscrimination laws but also erode the Civil Rights Act—and turn back the clock to a time when businesses could tell people, “we don’t serve your kind here.”

    which is exactly what the GOP wants.

    • stevenj

      The New Deal and the Great Society legislation is in their crosshairs.

    • coram nobis

      However, the Administration brief and the petitioners are also arguing that the Court can carve out an exception for LGBTQ discrimination as less compelling than racial discrimination.

      The ABA amicus brief disagrees:

      In a further effort to cabin the disquieting implications of their proposed approach, petitioners and the federal government suggest that a constitutional exemption from public accommodations laws would not extend to laws that bar discrimination based on race or opposition to interracial marriage. That distinction lacks any principled basis. When the Civil Rights Act was enacted, its protections were controversial in part because they contradicted the sincerely held religious and moral beliefs of a part of the population. …
      * * *
      Accepting the government’s premise that States have a diminished interest in protecting gays and lesbians from discrimination would effectively single out this class of people for disfavored treatment under antidiscrimination laws—precisely what Romer prohibits …
      * * *
      The government next argues that the state’s interest in protecting the marriage right recognized in Obergefell is insufficiently “weighty” because opposition to marriage equality is held “in good faith by reasonable and sincere people.” U.S. Br. at 32. But in Obergefell this Court recognized that “when that sincere, personal opposition [to marriage equality] becomes
      enacted law and public policy, the necessary consequence is to put the imprimatur of the State itself on an exclusion that soon demeans or stigmatizes those whose own liberty is then denied.”
      — ABA brief, pp. 30 et seq

      http://www.scotusblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/16-111_bsac_american-bar-association.pdf

  • Hue-Man

    Here’s a link to video of Canada’s Supreme Court oral arguments last Thursday and Friday (November 30/December 1) in the Trinity Western University Law School case. The Law Society of Upper Canada (Ontario) refused to grant accreditation to TWU due to its Covenant which prohibits sex outside male-female marriage for students, staff and teachers.
    http://www.scc-csc.ca/case-dossier/info/webcast-webdiffusion-eng.aspx?cas=37209

    I watched/listened to several hours of the coverage, most of it dry but some quite funny; the Justices were involved with questions and comments because it’s an issue they understand and can relate to – they’re all lawyers. I don’t know what their ruling will be; if there’s such a thing as “natural law”, TWU should lose but it would mean overturning the Supreme Court ruling in 2001 involving TWU teachers certification. Filings for the parties and intervenors are linked on the left-hand side of the page.

    Vancouver Sun newspaper coverage. http://vancouversun.com/news/national/day-2-interveners-speak-for-and-against-trinity-western-university-law-school

    BTW, Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin retires December 15th – mandatory retirement of federal judges at age 75.

  • coram nobis

    SCOTUSblog preview of the case, today.

    http://www.scotusblog.com/2017/11/argument-preview-wedding-cakes-v-religious-beliefs/

    The implications of a ruling for Masterpiece, the state and the couple suggest, would be sweeping, far beyond the “countless businesses” such as hair salons, tailors, architects and florists that “use artistic skills when serving customers or clients.” They contend that a wide range of businesses could “claim a safe harbor from any commercial regulation simply by claiming that [they] believe[] complying with the law would send a message with which [they] disagree[].” Such an outcome, they conclude, would “eviscerate” the government’s ability, including through labor and health laws, to regulate all kinds of transactions.

    The SCOTUSblog go-to page on the case, including briefs and filings, is here.

    http://www.scotusblog.com/case-files/cases/masterpiece-cakeshop-ltd-v-colorado-civil-rights-commn/

    • The_Wretched

      Unbounded implications was also part of the widely reviled Hobby Lobby case. I don’t see a rational limit from the legal-political-right that limits their argument to ‘just’ LQBTQ issues. There’s every reason to expect the ruling would allow invidious discrimination against blacks, women and every other protected or identifiable group.

      • coram nobis

        That’s the dilemma. Either the Court singles out LGBTQ people as an unprotected class — a bit unlikely after the Romer-Lawrence-Obergefell string of cases — or it makes a general ruling that religious belief trumps compliance with any other law or anyone else’s rights. And a party’s (or company’s) professed religious belief is something courts cannot review when such cases come up.

        Trouble is, there’s a decision by Antonin Scalia that they’ll have to overcome as well, Employment Division, Department of Human Resources of Oregon v. Smith, 494 U.S. 872 (1990), which includes his analysis of why “laws of general applicability” overcome religious beliefs.

        https://www.law.cornell.edu/supremecourt/text/494/872

        There may also be a ruling why racial-justice rulings like Heart of Atlanta, McClung, and Piggie Park only apply to race and not, say, sexual orientation or gender, which would also open a big can of worms.

        • coram nobis

          A footnote as to race and LGBTQ on this issue.

          Mildred Loving:

          Surrounded as I am now by wonderful children and grandchildren, not a day goes by that I don’t think of Richard and our love, our right to marry, and how much it meant to me to have that freedom to marry the person precious to me, even if others thought he was the “wrong kind of person” for me to marry. I believe all Americans, no matter their race, no matter their sex, no matter their sexual orientation, should have that same freedom to marry. Government has no business imposing some people’s religious beliefs over others. Especially if it denies people’s civil rights.

          https://www.acslaw.org/acsblog/mildred-loving-endorses-marriage-equality-for-same-sex-couples

  • S1AMER

    Good to see and hear about this.

    We really, really need to get through to people that this isn’t just a few bakers or florists. If SCOTUS says it’s okay for them to discriminate, that’s the precedent for anybody, anywhere, hiding behind Jesus’ skirts to discriminate against anybody.

  • Paula

    In that bakery scene, I would have probably pulled that cake off the counter as I left and loudly exclaimed, OOPS.
    I think we need a national website listing known anti gay businesses. They don’t want our money, they go on the list. Let them prove they don’t belong there.

  • Kevin Andrews

    These Missionary of Hate demonstrate exactly what is wrong with the Evangelicals and their registered Hate-Groups as they cling to lies and commit fraud without ever grasping “Separation of Church & State” or the Constitution.
    Sick Christ-O-Fascists. If they are offended by reality in the natural world then I pray they rise to their Rapture sooner rather than later. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/a8000d843a244d37dcca933010c752461e5b01b20b20b69193cb67284c18c609.png

  • JWC

    To a large part, being Canadian,tomorrows Supreme Courts discussion on Masterpiece Cakeshop vs the Colorado Civil Righ Commision does not directly concern or affect me . As a Gay man it most certainly does. It has ong been my view, that the Religious Right has never accepted the Obergefell vs Hodges decision , Through nit picking and petty arguements people like Kim Davis and Jack Phillips has kept minor squirmishes to the forefront on this issue. The GOP stacked Supreme Court will hear arguements starting tomorrow. The propensity of setting the clock back to a Jim Crow era benefits no one. It is my profound hope that these current minor incedences do not outweigh generations of Civil Rights.Regardless I believe that Jack Phillips and Kim Davies should join the ranks of Martin Shkreli as the triumverate of Americas most despised

  • JWC
  • boobert

    I don’t have a good feeling about this case. The far right has a hold on the courts, and they will keep it for many years.

  • coram nobis

    Religion News Service, today:

    … the early evangelicals, once a threatened minority, were great fans of the First Amendment. To them, it enshrined the value that “everyone was entitled to an opinion about religion and to follow the dictates of conscience.”

    The rise of the religious right, however, has “flipped the script,” in insisting that they enforce their religious views in the public square, Freeman says. “They turn liberty on its head, and it becomes a new form of tyranny that masquerades as liberty.”

    http://religionnews.com/2017/12/04/supreme-court-cake-case-frosted-with-divergent-notions-of-religious-liberty/

  • JWC

    An Idea borrowed from ( I think) ” the Wedding Planner” What if all the hair dresser, waiters, florist and other on the Team did a mamouth walk out in protest

  • gothambear

    FUCKING WALL STREET JOURNAL EDITORIAL PAGE TODAY supporting the cake shop owner/baker

    • coram nobis

      Rupert Murdoch. Need say no more.

  • coram nobis

    What can happen with this case if it goes the wrong way? Ask Janice Langbehn.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Janice_Langbehn

    That’s something worth bringing up in arguments tomorrow.

    • coram nobis

      What can happen, cont’d.

      While ADF has taken pains to position its central arguments in Masterpiece Cakeshop as protecting its client’s freedom of expression, ADF’s own filings and the amicus briefs supporting the petitioner make clear that this “artistic expression” is inextricably tied to Phillips’s religious convictions about marriage. If the court accepts that premise, it could set a precedent that may well embolden racist factions of American society that, until recently, stayed largely hidden in shadowy sub-communities and angry echo chambers on the dark web.

      Pointing to the “religious freedom” arguments deployed by pro-slavery activists and segregationists of old, Wenger acknowledges that most Americans no longer view interpretations of Christianity that call for racial subjugation and white supremacy as legitimate. But given the current climate Wenger worries that a ruling affirming the religious freedom and expression claims ADF is advancing in Masterpiece Cakeshop would draw those dark forces out of the shadows.

      More at
      http://religiondispatches.org/how-a-ruling-for-masterpiece-cakeshop-could-embolden-white-nationalists/

  • Gianni

    I don’t quite understand the claim by the bakery about the “creative” element. I haven’t read anything about some sort of special and/or significant design elements requested by the plaintiffs. My understanding is that they wanted to buy a standard, white iced, pretty-to-look-at wedding cake. What is so unusual about that? I’m sure the bakery has a series of standard looking wedding cake designs of different sizes that they show customers so they can pick what they like. Where’s this unusual creativity thing that comes into their claim? No wording of any sort is normally requested to be put on such a cake. Wedding cakes don’t usually come in odd, unusual, different, or comical shapes. What was so special about the request that would have required any deviation (specific creativity) with this cake? There was none. Their only objection was to make and sell it to a gay couple. When the ruling came down against them for sexual orientation discrimination, THEN they and their lawyers got creative concocting this ludicrous defense.

    • coram nobis

      And it is ludicrous. See the “Subway Sandwich Artist” argument.

      http://religiondispatches.org/the-subway-sandwich-artist-argument-when-religious-freedom-isnt-about-religious-freedom/

      Consider this faintly ridiculous hypothetical: I am in line at my local Subway sandwich shop, ordering my favorite sub with a generous helping of hot sauce. “I’m sorry, sir,” says the person behind the counter, “but that much sriracha will simply overpower the carefully curated flavors in your sandwich. To maintain my artistic integrity, I simply cannot fulfill your request.” Seeing my puzzled look, he proudly points to his name badge, which officially declares him a “Subway sandwich artist.”

      • Gianni

        Thanks. That was useful reading.

  • bsinps

    Signed

  • coram nobis

    One point worth raising: The “creative expression” argument is something of a lie. This Caravaggio of the cake world never got to the creative part of his so-called masterpiece. The Colorado brief, which presumably is more reliable than the garbled news coverage:

    Phillips said that it was his business practice not to sell wedding cakes to same-sex couples. J.A. 60, 111, 152. He said he would sell the couple “birthday cakes, shower cakes, … cookies and brownies, I just don’t make cakes for same sex weddings.” J.A. 152. The couple had no opportunity to discuss the cake they wanted, such as its design or whether it would include particular features or messages. J.A. 111, 152. They immediately left the store when it became clear they were being denied service. J.A. 111, 152.
    — brief, p. 10

    http://www.scotusblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/16-111bs-ccrc.pdf

    • stuckinthewoods

      They admit the speech aspect of their “creative expression” is not theirs. From another of the Scotusblog articles:

      “Indeed the cakeshop acknowledges that before designing a cake, a store
      representative “meets with the couple to learn their desires,
      personalities, preferences, and wedding details.” Why – other than to be
      sure that the cake conveys the couple’s beliefs, ideas and messages?
      How then can the cakeshop ask the Supreme Court to regard the cake as
      the embodiment of its owner’s personal beliefs and a distinct message of
      approval for the customers and their celebration?”

      Thus cakeshop admits that the “expression” they seek out is that of the customer and not their own.
      http://www.scotusblog.com/2017/09/symposium-commercial-products-speech-cake-just-cake/

      • BobSF_94117

        They also have a catalog of cakes. I suspect the bulk of their business is for those generic cakes.

    • Spuddie

      There you go, hitting people over the head with facts. That is so unfair to the other side of the argument! 🙂

  • normadesmond

    Right before Halloween, I was standing by the pharmacy dept. in a CVS in Richfield, MN. I didn’t hear what the customer asked the clerk at the register, but I clearly heard the clerk proclaim, “I’m a christian, I don’t celebrate Halloween!” I found the manager & told her I don’t need to hear shit like that. Where’s Miss Richfield when we really need her!?

  • coram nobis

    Background piece in The Nation on the other side’s religious legal group, the so-called Alliance Defending Freedom. Lengthy read but worthwhile.

    https://www.thenation.com/article/the-christian-legal-army-behind-masterpiece-cakeshop/

    … Founded 24 years ago because, as its longtime president Alan Sears once put it, “the homosexual agenda threatens religious freedom,” ADF now rivals some of the nation’s top private law firms in Supreme Court activity. It has trained thousands of lawyers, many of whom have gone on to government service at the federal, state, and local levels. The organization has helped shape “religious freedom” legislation; provides grants to other Christian-right organizations; and presses school districts to adopt its model policies on issues like transgender facility access. ADF now exerts far more influence than other legal organizations that litigate religious-freedom cases, such as the American Center for Law and Justice, the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, and Liberty Counsel. As the courts have ruled in favor of marriage equality over the past decade, ADF has positioned itself at the very center of the efforts to curtail LGBTQ rights under the guise of religious freedom …

    Morality is doing right, no matter what you are told. Religion is doing what you are told, no matter what is right.
    – H.L. Mencken

  • Dale Snyder

    I think this is no-brainer. The christian asswipe broke the law. End of story.

    • Oscarlating Wildely

      But remember: He’s an artist for Jeebus. That changes everything. /s

  • People4Humanity

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/d0e9511271971e334e49f5bd1584c2266772aa0f4d3fc520f6f12db9a9bb736b.jpg NATIONAL LAW JOURNAL
    Supreme Court Brief
    POWERED BY LAW.COM
    Tony Mauro
    Marcia Coyle
    Dec 05, 2017
    One blockbuster day down, one to go! Supreme Court Brief is back with a quick look at what is the most hotly debated case of the term, at least judging by the flood of amicus briefs. The high court’s adjustable lectern will undoubtedly be going up and down as four lawyers try to capture the magic five votes in Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission. We highlight the arguments with an added dose of background drama between two of the four lawyers; share some thoughts on Monday’s sports betting challenge; and launch Recusal Watch, an occasional look at interesting or perplexing recusals by the justices.

    We’d like this to be a two-way conversation, so reach out to us, Tony Mauro at [email protected] or Marcia Coyle at [email protected]. We welcome your views on what the court is doing and not doing, tips about interesting petitions, briefs, books and articles, and predictions about forthcoming opinions, vacancies, nominations—anything on the court’s horizon.

    Let Them Eat Cake?

    It’s really not just about the cake, or to be more specific, the wedding cake for a same-sex couple at the heart of what has become the most controversial case of the Supreme Court term. Masterpiece Cakeshop is about the future effect of anti-discrimination laws that protect racial and other minorities when challenged on the basis of the First Amendment.

    That broader concern undoubtedly is the reason for the outpouring of amicus briefs—more than 80—from business, civil rights, religious and other groups across the ideological spectrum. As in the Supreme Court’s landmark 2015 same-sex marriage decision, lots of big law firms have joined the legal fight, including Hogan Lovells; Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom; Covington & Burling; Ropes & Gray; Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld; Munger, Tolles & Olson; and Perkins Coie.

    Not the usual two lawyers, but four will take turns at the lectern this morning, and two of them share some high-level drama unfolding in another case. But first, the case at hand …

    Colorado baker Jack Phillips, who refused to bake a wedding cake for Charlie Craig and David Mullins because of his religious objections to same-sex marriage, was found in violation of the state’s public accommodations law. His counsel, Kristen Waggoner of Alliance Defending Freedom, argues that applying the law to him violates his First Amendment speech right because it compels him to create an artistic expression celebrating same-sex marriage, and it also violates his exercise of religion right. Waggoner, senior vice president of the U.S. legal division of ADF, is making her first high court argument. ADF, a conservative Christian legal organization, actively opposes through litigation, lobbying and legislation, same-sex marriage and related issues here and abroad.

    Colorado Solicitor General Frederick Yarger, a former lawyer with Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, is making his third Supreme Court argument. He argued two cases last year: Nelson v. Colorado and Pena-Rodriguez v. Colorado. Yarger’s argument is straightforward: “This case has nothing to do with the artistic merits of wedding cakes. It is instead about the integrity of a 150-year-old principle: When a business opens its doors to the general public, it may not reject customers because of who they are.”

    In his official high court debut as solicitor general of the United States, former Jones Day partner Noel Francisco, sharing argument time with Waggoner, makes the Trump Administration’s argument that the state law violates the Constitution because it compels Phillips to design and create a custom wedding cake for a same-sex couple. His argument focuses solely on the compelled speech claim and does not address Phillips’ religion claim.

    The government’s participation in the case came despite objections by senior lawyers in the civil and civil rights divisions and the office of solicitor general, sources told The National Law Journal last fall. And it followed by two months, a closed-door meeting between Attorney General Jeff Sessions and ADF, the group representing the Colorado baker.

    Oh, and do we even have to say this? Everyone will be watching and listening to Justice Anthony Kennedy, the justice closest to a First Amendment absolutist and author of the court’s landmark gay rights rulings.

    Now about that background drama. Francisco’s other opponent during arguments will be David Cole, national legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union and counsel to the same-sex couple. Cole, sharing Yarger’s argument time, is making his first appearance in the high court as the ACLU’s top lawyer and his fifth Supreme Court argument. Francisco and Cole are at odds over the lawyering in a recent appellate case involving a pregnant immigrant teen who sought an abortion.

    Francisco on Nov. 3 filed a petition for review asking the justices to vacate an unsigned Washington federal appeals court decision that said U.S. health and immigration officials could no longer block the teen’s abortion, which she had shortly after the ruling. Francisco’s petition accused the teen’s counsel— lawyers at the American Civil Liberties Union—of misleading the government about the scheduling of the teen’s abortion which, in turn, prevented the government from seeking the justices’ review. Francisco suggested the justices consider imposing sanctions on the ACLU lawyers.

    Late Monday, the ACLU, represented by Sidley Austin’s Carter Phillips, responded in a brief filed in the high court. Phillips called Francisco’s accusations “baseless and extraordinary.” Two heavyweights in the ring. Stay tuned.

    Sports Betting Day at the Supreme Court

    Everyone expected Chris Christie to attend Monday’s argument in the sports betting case that bears his name: Christie v. NCAA. But spectators and justices did a double take when they saw him sitting in the front row of the Supreme Court bar section, not far from his legal team.

    It turned out that the New Jersey governor, a Seton Hall University School of Law-bred lawyer and former U.S. attorney, had never signed up for membership in the Supreme Court bar, and he decided Monday was the day to do it. His lawyer in the case, Ted Olson of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, moved for his admission.

    In case you were wondering, Olson also moved the admission of James DiGiulio, Christie’s chief counsel, Stuart Feinblatt and Peter Slocum from the New Jersey attorney general’s office, and David Rebuck, director of the Division of Gaming Enforcement in New Jersey.

    Where Christie was situated also put him right next to the press section at the court, and inches away from NPR’s longtime Supreme Court correspondent Nina Totenberg. Never media-shy, Christie soon engaged Totenberg and others in a mini-news conference before the proceedings began …

    So, how did it go for Christie? As we wrote on Monday, the general tenor of the argument seemed to favor the Garden State in its long fight to do away with the 1992 Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, which bars most states from allowing sports gambling. Olson seemed to gain traction with an argument that wasn’t stressed in his brief: that the federal government can pre-empt state actions only when it actually imposes a comprehensive regulatory scheme of its own that would render state actions inconsistent. Deputy SG Jeffrey Wall, who was defending the law, called that a “made-up principle,” but it seemed to stick.

    Paul Clement got off on the wrong foot, it seemed, by reciting what the federal law actually does—factual background, rather than an argument. Clement represented the sports leagues that want the law to stick around. Advocates always say the opening remarks are crucial, because justices are likely to quickly change the subject by asking questions. Sure enough, Justice Anthony Kennedy intervened and asked a question and they were … off to the races.

    What does a Christie win mean? Richard Batchelder, a commercial litigator and sports lawyer at Ropes & Gray who attended the argument offered these thoughts:

    “If the Supreme Court rules in New Jersey’s favor, as I expect it will, states around the country will want to capitalize on opportunities presented by the widespread public interest in sports betting. If this occurs, a number of businesses and other stakeholders such as professional sports leagues, colleges and universities will be facing complex legal, regulatory and reputational risks.”

    If you enjoy Supreme Court Brief, check out our other new Law.com briefings. Learn more and sign up here.
    ➤➤ Trump Travel Ban Takes Effect … For Now: The high court late Monday—over the objection of Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor—allowed the Trump administration’s travel ban to go into full effect pending the outcome of hearings this week in the Fourth and Ninth circuit courts of appeals, or action by the justices on the government’s petition for review. Read more here from the NLJ’s Cogan Schneier.

    ➤➤ No Further Clarity: The Supreme Court, in a setback for the gay rights community, declined to take up Houston’s challenge to a Texas Supreme Court decision holding that the landmark same-sex marriage decision does not require cities in the state to provide equal benefits to the same-sex spouses of their employees. Houston’s petition was filed by the former chief justice of the state high court, Wallace Jefferson of Austin’s Alexander Dubose Jefferson & Townsend. Defending the lower court ruling was former Texas solicitor general Jonathan Mitchell of Stanford Law School.

    Thanks for reading. See you tomorrow for a Masterpiece debrief.

    Send us your thoughts, observations and insights on the arguments: [email protected] or [email protected]

  • 1980Gardener

    I have been having a difficult time getting worked up over this case. I guess I just don’t see it impacting me regardless…

    • Bj Lincoln

      Are you a straight, white christian? If not, it WILL affect you.

      • 1980Gardener

        I think it will affect some, but not me personally.

        • shivadog

          So you admit you’re a selfish piece of crap that doesn’t give a shit about other people. Nice to know.

          • 1980Gardener

            No, not exactly; rather, my concern is that the implications of this case are amounting to fear-mongering.

          • shivadog

            So when you said:
            “I have been having a difficult time getting worked up over this case. I guess I just don’t see it impacting me regardless”
            and
            “I think it will affect some, but not me personally.”
            That was supposed to mean
            “My concern is that the implications of the case are amounting to fear-mongering”
            So which is it? Are you a selfish piece of crap or a lying Nazi asshole? My bet is a bit of both.

          • 1980Gardener

            “That was supposed to mean
            “My concern is that the implications of the case are amounting to fear-mongering””

            -Correct. i have no seen evidence in my life, or otherwise, to suggest that the case would have a widespread impact. Why do you think it will have a widespread impact?

          • Priya Lynn

            Once people are allowed to discriminate due to their religious beliefs there will be no service that cannot be denied.

            Imagine being a poor gay person in a small town and no one in the town will serve you.

            Given that gays are five per cent of the population it won’t be a “wide spread” impact but it sure as hell is a big deal if you’re one of the people being refused service.

      • AmeriCanadian

        He admitted such in another post. Straight, white, married, kids, rural town. Drumpf voter assumed.

  • neonzx

    xxx

  • Kevin Andrews

    The treason of the Roberts SCOTUS and their listening closely to Koch brother’s Cash = Free Speech defines the illness of AmeriKKKa with the GOTP Christ-O-Fascism running rampant.
    The Missionary of Hate have nothing of value to contribute to The United States and are all seditious. Let the fear & hate mongering begin. The latent homosexual baker will make a spectacle of its self and absolutely define the Cannibal Cults of Jeebus Inc as the Hate-Group we of the LGBTQ culture have known them as since birth. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/be3f7dce7da7066b580370de72187248b4d349d6a19718b73fedf79ec8d34aff.png

  • wmforr

    “My religion doesn’t recognize Jewish weddings. No cake.”

  • NY Law Guy

    Here’s an interesting article. As a lawyer, I find the first amendment angle pretty compelling.
    A Baker’s First Amendment Rights https://nyti.ms/2kmattt

  • William Tigano

    I just read the entire oral argument. The biggest problem for the bad guys is defining just who and what is “artistic.” They argue just the customized cake is speech and at issue but go on to say that the chef, make up artist, florist, caterer, etc… we not included in the special cake maker artist group. How do you write an opinion that exempts from the law a specific person. I can’t see the Court carving out such an exemption when you can’t even define clearly the offended group. No way, no how they open up that can of worms and create years of litigation.

  • Belthazar

    “Seriously! If baking a cake for a gay wedding is endorsing homosexuality,
    then voting for a pedophile is endorsing pedophilia.”

  • coram nobis

    I don’t see any good coming out of this, at least in my own Con. Law analysis.

    1. We get a freedom-of-speech or compelled-speech ruling, which says the baker is an artist and cannot be compelled to create a work of art.

    2. We get a ruling that says that religion and race anti-discrimination is “more compelling” than similar laws on LGBTQ rights. This is, I think, possible, given that under strict-scrutiny analysis, as it now exists, race and religion are subject to this higher standard, and we may get a ruling that says that LGBTQ is not (and neither is gender, BTW, but that’s for another case). It will make LGBTQ people a second-class group, make a mockery of the equal-protection clause of the 14th Amendment, and probably drive a wedge between LGBTQ interests and communities of color — a pity, given how many LGBTQ people are of color.

    3. We get a broad ruling that says that the free exercise of religion excuses compliance with anti-discrimination laws or maybe with laws of general applicability. I don’t think this as likely, but it’s now possible.

    4. We have to wait till the end of June to find out what this baby will look like, and that’s for sure. Big rulings always come out end of term.

    Our side argued poorly, near as I can tell, esp. the state of Colorado. It’s possible the Court will kick this back to lower courts for re-arguing absent a religious-animus element (Kennedy’s concern) but it means it’d be back in the 2018-19 term with one or two new Justices appointed by Trump or his successor.

    Not good.

    PS. WH spokesmonster Sarah Huckabee Sandersfriedchicken says that Trump is just fine with businesses posting No Homos Served signs. That’s another new precedent to live with.

  • Al Prazolam

    What disgusts me is that the Justice Department has taken the baker’s side. It could have stood on the sidelines but decided to meddle on the wrong side. I’m sick about this. Will a gay couple who want to rent a room for the night have to masquerade as cousins? If the ruling goes against us I hope it’s very narrow.

  • I see this as relatively clear cut.

    If you make widgets, you have to sell widgets to everyone. However, no one should be able to force you to customize your widgets in a particular way.

    If you make cakes, you have to sell them to everyone. If you don’t want to have to put two grooms on it (or a cross or a pentagram), then you shouldn’t be forced to.

    This does mean, though, that a gay caterer would have no legal standing to reject a request by the AFA to provide lunch … but the law requires consistency.

  • kingeider

    found it interesting that cake guy said he’d be glad to bake one for their shower. As if he’d not have a problem with a baby shower for them. Cake guy is lying

  • coram nobis

    SCOTUSblog’s Wednesday roundup has numerous hyperlinks with post-argument commentary on the cake case.

    http://www.scotusblog.com/2017/12/wednesday-round-up-401/#more-264773