Friday, August 14, 2015

The Colorado Cake Case

An appeals court in Colorado has upheld an administrative law judge's decision that refusing to bake a cake for a same sex wedding violated the Colorado Anti-Descrimination Act (CADA).

Masterpiece Cakeshop had claimed that requiring them to provide such a wedding cake violates their constitutional rights to freedom of speech and the free exercise of religion.

The court disagreed.

"...CADA does not compel Masterpiece to support or endorse any particular religious views. The law merely prohibits Masterpiece from discriminating against potential customers on account of their sexual orientation."

The court also specifically related this to discrimination against blacks and quoted from Newman v. Piggie Park Enters., Inc.

 "Undoubtedly defendant . . . has a constitutional right to espouse the religious beliefs of his own choosing, however, he does not have the absolute right to exercise and practice such beliefs in utter disregard of the clear constitutional rights of other citizens. This Court refuses to lend credence or support to his position that he has a constitutional right to refuse to serve members of the Negro race in his business establishment upon the ground that to do so would violate his sacred religious beliefs."

Masterpiece also claimed that they discriminated not because of the sexual orientation but simply because they're opposed to same sex marriage.

"Masterpiece thus distinguishes between discrimination based on a person’s status and discrimination based on conduct closely correlated with that status. However, the United States Supreme Court has recognized that such distinctions are generally inappropriate."

Both of these points are well established law with multiple precedents that should have been known by the legal team representing Masterpiece. The fact that they proceeded with the case anyway makes me wonder if they are incompetent or dishonest.

No comments: