Legal Analyst explains how Supreme Court ruling affects LGBTQ+ members
A recent ruling by the Supreme Court determined that a Christian graphic design artist can refuse to provide service to an LGBTQ-plus couple.
CBS19 News Legal Analyst Scott Goodman broke down what this means for people within the LGBTQ-plus community.
“Up until now ever since the Civil Rights Act of 1964 people who are in business and serving the public can’t just pick and choose who they serve,” said Goodman.
Goodman explains when it comes to this case, the Supreme Court used the 1st Amendment to justify the ruling.
“So you have a woman who’s in business designing websites for people who are having weddings and that’s really conduct. It really has nothing to do with speech per say, but the Supreme Court says that it is speech that by forcing her is the court saying you have to serve this couple the transgender or this LGBTQ+ couple that the state is imposing a speech requirement,” he added.
Goodman says because this is a Constitutional ruling, it can be used in every state, not just Colorado where the case originated.
Goodman also adds this does not mean that businesses can automatically decline customers based on their gender identity or sexual orientation.
“They would have to claim that there’s some speech involved. That’s what this website designer did. It was a creative argument that her lawyer made saying that her business basically was speech and the Supreme Court bought that argument. If it was just conduct, if it was just providing a service then it would not be protected by the first amendment,” said Goodman.