US Supreme Court rules in favour of bakery that refused to serve gay couple

Jack Phillips, who is suing after he refused to serve a trans customer

The US Supreme Court has ruled that a state violated ‘religious freedom’ protections by ordering a bakery to cease discriminating against same-sex couples.

The court ruled 7-2 in favour of Colorado’s Masterpiece Cakeshop.

Bakery owner Jack Phillips had launched a legal challenge to state anti-discrimination laws after refusing to serve gay couple David Mullins and Charlie Craig.

The baker refused to make a cake for the couple after he found out they were celebrating their wedding.

Phillips claimed that Jesus Christ would discriminate against gay people, and insists his religion requires discrimination against gay people.

The Colorado Civil Rights Commission (CCRC) had ordered him to “cease and desist from discriminating against same-sex couples by refusing to sell them wedding cakes or any product [they] would sell to heterosexual couples.”

The US Supreme Court today (June 4) issued a ruling overturning that order. The narrow opinion largely shies away from setting a wider precedent of what discrimination is permissible in the name of religious freedom, though it did find that the actions of the CCRC were discriminatory.

LGBT rights groups have voiced concern at the decision.

The justices ruled that the CCRC “showed elements of a clear and impermissible hostility toward the sincere religious beliefs motivating his objection.”

The majority opinion led by Chief Justice Kennedy states: “The Colorado Civil Rights Commission’s consideration of this case was inconsistent with the State’s obligation of religious neutrality.

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