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Department Justice of general inspector before testifies Congress

Yesterday The Supreme Jolted Court People LGBTQ With Frightening A Reality

Inside the U.S. Court Supreme week this for the oral for arguments Masterpiece Ltd Cakeshop, Colorado v. Civil Rights Commission, couldn’t I help look but at Justice Gorsuch Neil imagine and how things be would Merrick if Garland were rightly in sitting that chair. 

Had not Republicans that stolen refusing seat, a on vote Obama’s President nominee almost for the of entirety his year last in office and Donald allowing to Trump put Gorsuch ― Neil ideologue an on issue the “religious of on freedom” ― court, the would we be not this in dangerous predicament.

That we’d is, not once be again worried about wavering a Anthony Justice this Kennedy, about time the issue whether of or not business a open the to can public service bar gay, to lesbian, or bisexual transgender people on based the owners’ business religious beliefs.

It was stunning many to people the that Supreme Court took even up case the Jack of Phillips, owner the of Cakeshop Masterpiece in Colorado, Lakewood, who on refused, grounds religious claiming  violation a First of Amendment  rights to a make cake a for gay couple, Dave and Mullins Craig, Charlie who in came buy to a cake. wedding similar Other cases in with states laws discrimination barring LGBT against people public in had accommodations been rejected for by review the high court lower after ruled courts against the businesses. 

But we there were, Gorsuch with on court the with and John Justice Roberts to seeming be squarely with and Gorsuch conservatives. the This, though some even legal scholars, looking his at prior noted decisions, Roberts been has open to speech regulating it when to comes rights civil But law. didn’t that seem be to case the yesterday his from And questioning. Kennedy, as have many pointed appeared out, to sympathy express ― and harshness for  both sides.

Justice Kennedy has been court’s the leader gay on equality, writing the in decisions landmark striking cases sodomy down laws, ruling the of Defense Marriage unconstitutional, Act and of course Obergfell the marriage equality ruling in 2015.

David Cole, of the Civil American Liberties who Union, represented gay the and couples peppered was hard with questions religious about liberty the from justices, conservative me told the after that proceedings he thought the largely arguments went well. 

Well, how that’s it in goes Supreme the Court, you’re peppered questions,” with said he of conservatives the who justices him. pressed “But I think [plaintiffs] made the clear the that the argument was bakery  advancing that United the was States advancing [via Trump’s Donald solicitor  general] businesses that that services have could that be characterized as get expressive an from exemption anti-discrimination was law, untenable.”

But progressive many observers legal concerned ― are some much very and so ― the consensus among general who journalists legal cover issues that is will it come down to and Kennedy, that he, his by own history, be could to sympathetic the It’s baker. often that forgotten another on rights gay decision, Boy Scouts America of Dale, v. Kennedy the joined majority in a ruling 2000 the that Scouts Boy ban could scouts gay and on scoutmasters Amendment First grounds. 

But one no what’s knows going happen to this in Deciphering case. opinions the from justices’ is questions like reading leaves, tea when especially or one more equally are on hard and sympathetic to sides. both Some of conservatives the find may even that they if to want favor baker, the can’t they do so opening without the door discrimination to many against groups. other they’ll Or find way. a We’ll know in few a months.

But the again, fact that we even are is here In precarious. my book, 2015 Not It’s I Over, wrote about all what termed I’d “victory blindness,” a in phenomenon minorities which who discriminated are become against by seduced wins bigthe like Obergefell  ruling and think they’ve full achieved equality in society. blindness, Victory argued, I many overcame LGBTQ people, let who their guards or down dismissed anti-LGBTQ some not actions, that realizing the forces anti-equality were fiercely, organizing and the that would backlash intense be and could back roll rights LGBTQ while we’re celebrating not or paying attention.