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The Supreme Court upheld the First Amendment Monday, ruling in favor of Jack Phillips, owner of Masterpiece Cakes in Lakewood, CO. In a narrowly crafted 7-2 opinion, the court ruled that the Colorado Civil Rights Commission demonstrated hostility to Phillips’s religious beliefs.
Although Justice Anthony Kennedy’s majority opinion was full of the woke posturing we’ve come to expect, had this case gone the other way, religious liberty would have suffered greatly. This ruling was a necessary brushback pitch to overreaching bureaucrats trying to stamp out diversity of thought and belief.
It would be ludicrous for government to force Jewish artists to create paintings celebrating Easter or force atheist artists to promote Hindu beliefs. Either would be as offensive as forcing Muslim bakers to cater a pork barbecue.
The same goes for Colorado insisting that a traditional Christian create cakes celebrating weddings that go against his beliefs. In fact, there are all sorts of occassions Phillips won’t endorse.
“He has declined to participate in Halloween,” his attorney said. “He doesn’t do cakes that are anti-American. Jack has even declined cakes that celebrate divorce. He has declined to do cakes that would be offensive or derogatory to individuals — including LGBT individuals.”
Of course, there might be a bakery down the street from Phillips that will make cakes supporting all those things. That’s how freedom works. But no artist or baker should be compelled by the government to create against his will.
Lost in these broad fights of the culture war are the individuals affected. You can learn more about Jack Phillips here: