How pro-lifers can save the Senate and the Supreme Court

Anti-abortion advocates demonstrate in front of the Supreme Court on June 25, 2018. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

(RNS) — The normally sleepy midterm elections were supposed to be a referendum on Trump and  a blue-wave win for the Democrats. Then came Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearings in the U.S. Senate. Suddenly Republican voters were re-energized, as many saw the midterms as the final showdown over the Kavanaugh nomination.

In truth, the fight to tell the story of how Brett Kavanaugh got to the high court has just begun. The two colliding narratives that made his confirmation so divisive will be kept alive by our opposing political tribes, each hoping to win the debate over how to evaluate future Supreme Court decisions, particularly about abortion, in which Kavanaugh is now the deciding vote.

It’s a battle that imperils the Senate and the Supreme Court itself, unless one group in whose name it is being fought can come to the rescue: pro-lifers.

To review: The Democratic narrative accuses Republicans of being dishonest in responding to Christine Blasey Ford’s certainty that Kavanaugh was her assailant with condescending conspiracy theories. Republicans swallowed these outlandish proposals while ignoring how their nominee lies under oath.

In the liberals’ narrative, the Republicans, who uncritically supported Clarence Thomas, Roy Moore and Donald Trump, will never take violence against women seriously — perhaps because a central conservative goal requires controlling women’s reproductive choices.

Protesters gather in front of the Supreme Court building holding signs with the image of Judge Brett Kavanaugh that read “Kava Nope” and “We Believe Christine Blasey Ford” on Capitol Hill in Washington, on Sept. 24, 2018. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

The Republican narrative, on the other hand, maintains that the hearings were a political kangaroo court. Minutes after Kavanaugh was nominated, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer declared he would oppose the former White House lawyer “with everything I have.” Democrats illegally leaked confidential emails. They threw Ford under the bus by airing a confidential letter against her will.

While all women must be heard and respected, Republicans say, Democrats have turned #MeToo into a political weapon by claiming all women must be believed no matter what the evidence suggests. Many Republican women supported Kavanaugh’s nomination because Democrats don’t care about women; they care about political street-fighting and using the Supreme Court to enact their agenda.

If Democrats gain control of the House they will conduct sweeping investigations aimed at impeaching Kavanaugh. Senate Republicans, for their part, have promised to continue to investigate the leak of Ford’s letter and even the alleged intimidation of witnesses.

Going forward, it’s likely that the party that holds the Senate majority will simply refuse to confirm a SCOTUS nominee from a president of the opposing party. And as long as the Senate and the president are of the same party, the opposition will deploy the same tactics Kavanaugh faced, only worse. Indeed, U.S. senators themselves may become victims of leaked info and character attacks in order to discredit their votes.

What is at risk is the credibility of both the Senate and the Supreme Court. Justice Elena Kagan observed that the court’s power lies only in popular respect for the institution. If the nation sees the confirmation process as a nakedly partisan fight for power, it may eventually ignore the court altogether.

People participate in the March for Life near the Supreme Court in Washington, on Jan. 19, 2018. The march — which typically draws busloads of Catholic school students, a large contingent of evangelical Christians and poster-toting protesters of many persuasions — falls each year around the anniversary of the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision that recognized a legal right to abortion and intends to pressure Congress and the White House to limit legal access to the procedure. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

Is it possible to stop the race to the political bottom and recapture the goodwill necessary for the Supreme Court and the Senate to function as the framers intended? Given the way Washington currently works, it is unlikely that Democrats and Republicans will call for a truce: Both parties are too beholden to special interests who benefit from the conflict.

Which is where pro-lifers come in. As one of the most important special interest groups driving the current dysfunctional process, we could lay down our arms in an attempt to help fix the system, yes, but also to benefit our movement.

As a pro-lifer who voted for George W. Bush in 2000 based purely on the hope of getting a court that would be friendly to pro-lifers, I understand the appeal of our SCOTUS battles. Roe and another landmark abortion case, Planned Parenthood v. Casey, mean that our side never gets to make a public case for serious abortion laws. As a result our abortion laws remain some of the most extreme in the world.

But there are at least three reasons why it is in pro-lifers’ interest to disarm.

First, the fight to overturn Roe/Casey has aligned us with the GOP, a poor partner in protecting prenatal children and their mothers.

This partnership requires a total focus on abortion supply (laws making abortion illegal) but none on demand (laws, like paid family leave and the pregnant woman support act, which reduce the chance women will seek an abortion). We must find a way to work with both major parties to save the lives of prenatal children and support their mothers.

U.S. Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh is sworn in before testifying during the Senate Judiciary Committee on Sept. 27, 2018, on Capitol Hill in Washington. (Tom Williams/Pool Image via AP)

Second, one never knows what a justice will do once on the Supreme Court. Many pro-lifers thought the fight was over when Anthony Kennedy was appointed, but his 1992 ruling in Casey largely kept the right to abortion intact. Many now believe Chief Justice John Roberts, as the new moderate swing vote, won’t overturn Roe/Casey, especially after the delegitimizing effect of the Kavanaugh hearings.

And what will Kavanaugh do? Many believe he will respect Roe/Casey. That’s a major reason why pro-choice Republican Sen. Susan Collins ended up voting for him.

Third, even if we are successful in overturning Roe/Casey, we are now almost sure to lose the legislative debates that will follow. Our association with Trump makes us deeply unpopular with the demographics who would be deciding such laws: young people and people of color.

And what if Roe/Casey were overturned with the votes of one justice credibly accused of sexual assault and another of sexual harassment? It would no doubt be followed by huge numbers of women voting in support of abortion rights. Several pro-choicers I know actually want Roe/Casey overturned for precisely this reason: They believe abortion rights will be more secure after a legislative process.

Bowing out of the SCOTUS wars may have another positive effect. In reacting to the naked politics of Roe v. Wade, and the pro-choice camp’s subsequent attempts to defend it, we have become one of the most significant forces pushing SCOTUS politics down its self-destructive path. Perhaps our disarming could ease some of the pressure on the system and lead other factions to follow suit.

Someone has to be first. The alternative is doubling down on the current death-spiral — one that threatens the very existence of the Senate and SCOTUS as we have come to understand them.

(Charles C. Camosy is an associate professor of theological and social ethics at Fordham University, a board member of Democrats for Life and author of “Beyond the Abortion Wars.” The views expressed in this commentary do not necessarily represent those of Religion News Service.)

About the author

Charles C. Camosy

Charlie Camosy, though a native of very rural Wisconsin, has spent more than the last decade as a professor of theological and social ethics at Fordham University. He is the author of five books, including, most recently, "Resisting Throwaway Culture." He is the father of four children, three of whom were adopted from the Philippines.


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  • Well, the comments here will give us some indication whether anyone will be laying down their arms any time soon. I predict, not so much.

  • That Dr. Camosy belongs to the contradiction in terms “Democrats for Life” puts the article in perspective.

    Additional perspective is added by:


    The only solutions to legal abortion are either jurists who give not a fig for stare decisis, a cure worse than the disease, or a constitutional amendment.

    Neither party will support the last, which is the best solution, and so getting it done will require organization at the state and local level for two thirds of the state legislatures to call a convention for proposing amendments per Article Five of the Constitution.

  • The anti-abortion crowd is what got us into this mess in the first place. It was their dogmatic disregard for the lives and personhood of women which drove them to support likely sexual predators to SCOTUS and got the people who work for a living to vote for politicians who attack their economic interests. It has poisoned the political process as well. It has been a trojan horse for undermining the middle class and civil liberties.

    Mr. Camosy, in your zeal to attack the rights of women, have exemplified the myopia of the anti-abortion crowd and how easily they have been manipulated to serve the interests of the uppermost wealthy. All at the expense of all those who work for a living.

  • Camosy reminds me of the Republicans that, when the South seceded, said the North should just let the South go—that the Union wasn’t worth fighting a war to preserve. The war over the Supreme Court will be over once it returns to its proper limits of enforcing the Constitution instead of using it as a Rorsach test for the Left’s policy preferences.

  • So, the old wolf in sheep’s clothing routine, eh?
    A simple thought for Mr Camosy and the pro-life Democrats: for conservatives, the Supreme Court is NOT about Roe v. Wade. It is about deciding law according to the constitution as written by the founding fathers. We don’t like R v W; but we understand it to be settled law and ACCEPT the decision out of respect to the institutions of our country. To conservatives, the institution (and corresponding rule of law) is more important than any case. This is not the case for Democrats / liberals who want to implement law through the SCOTUS.
    That being said, I am one of the most pro-life posters on this site. I went to Democrats for life because I was curious to see how left and right could be aligned on this important issue. To my disappointment, reading the tweets of some of their posters led me to believe that the alignment may be in name only. Democrats for life seems to have a more encompassing scope related to women’s rights than a pure focus on the unborn. This is not bad, but not exactly an alignment either. In addition, the commentary noted on the page is purely political – stating an us vs. them and red vs. blue mentality.
    Can left and right work together on this issue? Perhaps. But not until the focus truly is on the life.

  • Camosy acknowledges: 1) “As a pro-lifer who voted for George W. Bush in 2000 based purely on the hope of getting a court that would be friendly to pro-lifers…” and 2) “…we have become one of the most significant forces pushing SCOTUS politics down its self-destructive path.”

    But, as Camosy says, this is also true: “…Democrats have turned #MeToo into a political weapon…”

    Being a one issue voter gets us where we are now, so I applaud Camosy calling for the pro-lifers to take a step back. I also think the pro-choice side needs to step back. Both sides need to be willing to compromise.

    Here is the thing, Camosy. The compromise will not consist entirely of government programs of support for pregnant women. Good beginning but not enough. A compromise along the lines of some European countries “middle road” is where I think we need to go. Under these programs, abortion is legal up to a certain point – say 12,16, 20 weeks. Abortion after a specified number of weeks of pregnancy must be justified – reasons such as health of mother, fetal malformations. If the pro-life wants to find a way to actually make a difference, they will have to compromise, too, away from the absolutist “never” and into the “okay, but limited to…” Under these kinds of programs, both “sides” on the abortion politics squabble in the U.S. would be required to compromise.

    In all or most of these countries, there is not a problem with women getting health care while pregnant or with massive bills for a birth – most of these countries have national health care schemes. Do you know the U.S. has the worst maternal mortality among developed nations? And, with national health care programs, a woman giving birth to a child with a birth defect does not have to fear impoverishing the entire family to care for a special needs child. These are just two of the factors that need to be looked at if you want to effectively encourage women to carry a pregnancy to term.

    We need to find solutions to the divide on abortion. It is good to hear that a staunch pro-lifer recognizes that need. But, put forth some suggestions of what would be acceptable, Camosy. Deep breath. Plunge in.

  • I think that what happened was the pro-life position of “absolute never” pushed the pro-choice people to take the stance of “absolutely no limitations”. I think Camosy recognizes the error in this position.

    This also happened with same sex marriage. There was a time when same-sex couples would have been happy with a law allowing secular unions. BUT the Conservative Christians took the “absolute never” position pushing the opposition to go for “absolute marriage”!

    The intransigence of Conservatives with their “absolute never” position on many social issues has been and will continue to be a losing strategy for them.

  • Charles Camosy? Nope.

    That guy is a dyed in the wool fetus worshiper, notorious for dishonest and skewed views of the pro choice crowd.

    You’ve read his stuff before (or just blindly commented in his articles), you should know better then such an obvious lie.

  • He says he’s a pro-life Democrat. At least your side of the line.
    I don’t recall reading his work. I may have, but couldn’t tell you one way or another.

  • Good point on the parallel in the legal abortion/legal same sex marriage issues becoming extreme.

    I happen to agree with the need for civil laws to provide for and recognize same sex marriage and assure non-discrimination in the public sphere. Yes, those who bake wedding cakes and sell them on the open market need to bake wedding cakes for a gay couple, too. Secular law needs to treat all marriages as secular marriages – same sex or heterosex. If the rabid “NO! NO!” people had left it at that, then different religious groups could have made a decision of that religious groups participation in providing a church venue or performing a gay marriage. LGBT people are citizens, too.

    But, no, it had to become about rights of a person of a religious faith to apply that faith in how it treats customers, employees, rental of wedding venues, or housing. It had to include whether “service arms” of religious institutions – adoption or medical care or help for victims of sex trafficking – will include LGBT people in the services they provide or the people they hire to perform those services or even counseling on legally available services, such as abortion for tax trafficking victims. I am beginning to think the mingling of “faith based services” into government programs was a big mistake. Sounded good at the time but it has become messy.

    But lets find out if Camosy really understands what “compromise” will entail when it comes to abortion.

  • Same difference,. A Republican with a slight pang of conscience. He falls in line with the Republican platform for the promise of giving fetus worship color of law.

    However, there is no evidence of your assertion anyway. Not even in the article

    “As a pro-lifer who voted for George W. Bush in 2000 ”
    “the fight to overturn Roe/Casey has aligned us with the GOP”

  • Interesting choice of words my brother – “a republican with a slight pang of conscience”. I believe what you meant to say was “a [Democrat] with a slight pang of conscience”.
    Interesting that you use the word conscience; implying a purposeful analysis and choice between right and wrong. Furthermore, you imply with the tone of the statement that one with a conscience (and the will to use it) chooses to be pro-life.
    Could this be a Freudian slip?

  • Except the evidence is to the contrary.

    While legislatures were still able to have a say in the matter, no state wrote “absolutely no limitations” statutes.

    Some states, like New York, defined “health of the mother” broadly enough to drive a tractor-trailer through, but that was not the norm. The norm was ” the life of the mother” and rape, especially underage rape.

    When Roe v. Wade was considered by the Supreme Court, Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Inc., National Legal Program on Health Problems of the Poor et al., American Ethical Union et al., California Committee to Legalize Abortion et al., and the National Association for the Repeal of Abortion Laws all filed briefs supporting “absolutely no limitations”. They adopted those positions not because Conservative Christians opposed them, but because ordinary Americans opposed them.

    And the Court idiotically adopted that position, with some fig leafs about “viability”.

    In one fell swoop the Court ended the voice of the states, and the people who lived in them, in a manner akin to the infamous Dred Scott v. Sandford (1857) decision, and dropped a nuclear weapon on the democratic process.

    The results were predictable.

    So, from that the opposition learned an important lesson: ANY opposition is considered “intransigence”, and so the rational approach is to become totally intransigent knowing the opposition will never compromise except as a stepping stone to the desired goal.

    At this point opponents of abortion would be wise to simply write-off both parties and work at the grassroots to obtain a call for a convention to amend the Constitution by calls by two thirds of the states.

    And, btw, in the meantime they should avoid “compromises” Planned Parenthood Federation of America. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice …..

  • Nope. But its good to know you are incapable of directly addressing an argument in an honest fashion.

    There is nothing rational, moral or sane about the fetus worship position. It is deeply immoral, as it posits that women are not people, but in fact the property of the fetus worshiper.

    It involves heavy doses of flat out lying about obvious things. Like the inability to admit to the physical differences between a fetus and the born, the inability to acknowledge the mother’s physical burden and choices…

    Plus there is the s1utshaming and sanctimonious garbage motivating it. Children as a punishment.

    There is nothing remotely worthwhile in the position.

    Plus it gets people to vote for political candidates who harm their own economic interests.

    Nah, you are not even remotely moral for having such a position. Its garbage.

  • Like slavery after Dred Scott v. Sandford, abortion after Roe v. Wade will never be settled with a compromise.That ship sailed.

  • Camosy’s article is naked far-right, pro-Trump propaganda. He shows no respect for women’s health, women’s rights of conscience, women’s religious liberty. He is out of sync with the vast majority of Catholics, who were best represented by the May 25 referendum in Ireland which went 2 to 1 for abortion rights. US Catholics are about the same.

  • Once again Connelly/Arnzen displays his devotion to theocracy and his disdain for religious liberty and church-state separation. A constitutional convention? A sick joke. Does anyone imagine that we could ever have a convention with the wisdom of the 1787 Con-Con? No way. Roe v Wade was not perfect, but it did respect women’s health and rights of conscience. Of course there are some folks who oppose abortion, but they are not obliged to have them. Connelly/Arnzen seemed to have learned nothing from the May 25 referendum approved abortion by 2 to 1, about the same % by which US Catholics favor abortion rights.

  • It is self-explanatory. If you need it broken down to a 3rd grade level for you, you are out of luck.

  • You just cut and paste your usual abortion talking points.
    I want to know what you meant by tinge of conscience.

  • I cite where I cut and paste from. Usually for the purposes of bolstering personal credibility.

    Sorry if explaining your position is dishonest, immoral and at times batcrap crazy is tiresome. But that is what you guys leave me with.

  • What war? You lost it 200+ years ago.

    Your whole position and those of “Originalists”is a crock. Just an excuse to ignore prior legal thinking on civil liberties and engage in self serving conservative partisan rationalizing. The conservative wing of SCOTUS isn’t going to cede its power to Congress or the president. It’s purpose is as a check to their excesses.

    Right now we have a President stupid enough to think the 14th amendment can be altered by executive order and a feckless Congress which has given up any duty to defend the Constitution in favor of partisan looting. These are not groups whose judgment can be trusted and need the judiciary to rein them in.

  • Well, well, we’ll….
    You DO know right from wrong…
    Yet you still choose the dark-side. ..
    Now, I have to keep praying for you.

  • Lost 200+ years ago? Why do you think the Left did everything in their power to destroy Kavanaugh? Precisely because they’re losing their hold on the federal courts and that terrifies them.

  • Because he was a rapist and an immature manchild. The GOP could have done better with their pick. They just didn’t care.

    Republicans have become self serving partisan wh0res.one concerned with their own interests than their duty to the nation.

  • I prefer “middle road or ground” position rather than compromise. I think that pro-choice is a middle ground position. Same sex marriage is a middle ground position. BUT for many on the far right any middle ground position is a compromise for them! Their belief system is all or nothing, if they give an inch they lose everything.

    It is about allowing people to live their lives as they see fit as long as that doesn’t interfere with the rights of others to live their lives as they see fit. This is the middle road/ground position! AND what I consider when deciding what the RIGHT position is on an issue.

    Unfortunately the far right will insist that allowing abortion or same sex marriage interferes with their rights though when challenged they can’t say how! They can’t identify how it harms them directly. What they are afraid of, I think, is that their God will turn his back on them for NOT living in their conception of a righteous community and some have mentioned the story of Sodom and Gomorrah to back up their argument. When I have pointed out that what happened to Sodom and Gomorrah was due to how the town treated strangers to their community NOT about a town run amuk with immorality they don’t have a comeback argument!

  • Zzzzzzz ARGH!!!!!

    you have bored me to death with your inane attempt at trolling.

    Your inability to comprehend written English is duly noted.

  • For pity’s sake, haven’t we heard enough of the baloney yet?? During the late 80’s, Catholic bishops insinuated we came nigh on mortal sin if we voted for Republicans who would advocate capitalism, not welfare. Those same bishops had nothing to say when prominent “Catholic” senators–notably Ted Kennedy–voted for abortion rights and funding. Mr. Camosy, THIS is why Republicans and Democrats constantly fight each other. You’ve effectively declared that we may end abortion…so long as we shred the Constitution and abandon economic principles. No, sir, we will not demolish this republic merely to satisfy the Left.

  • Capitalism is a failing system, and will eventually lead to Socialism, and slavery (See Hilaire Belloc’s, The Servile State). Truly, the founding Fathers were distributists — believed in the rights of property for the many. They also believed in the right to life.

  • Given what you’ve argued regarding “middle road”, isn’t Roe’s gradually increasing state interest to regulate as the pregnancy advances just that? After all said and done, didn’t Blackmun pretty much get it right?

  • “Yes, those who bake wedding cakes and sell them on the open market need to bake wedding cakes for a gay couple, too.”

    Unless, of course, the cake transmits or conveys a message which the baker objects to transmitting or conveying.

    Forced speech violates the First Amendment.

  • If the cake baker should be required to provide the same cake for a gay wedding as he/she would provide for a straight wedding. A person who rents rooms should be required to provide the same room for a gay couple he/she would provide for a straight couple. A wedding planner should be required to provide the same services to a gay couple she/he would provide to a straight couple. I even think a photographer who takes wedding pictures for straight couples should be required to provide her/his services to a gay couple – but if I were the gay couple I would also be sure she/he agrees to be a professional about the services provided. And if she/he can’t be, I would be sure the public knows this person is not capable of being a professional. The person who rents venues for weddings needs to rent the venue to a gay couple if he/she rents the venue to a straight couple – the exception is houses of worship.

    The same reasoning you use to deny access to the market place for gay couples could be made to allow discrimination by color of skin, religion, ethnicity. But we got over that. I watched this as I grew up in the Bible Belt South. It is the same hate and fear, also claimed at the time as a religious belief. We need our market places to be free of discrimination.

    One more point. The person who makes a cake for a wedding is not endorsing the wedding. She/he is providing a good being sold on the public markets. It isn’t personal – it is a public accommodation. “Separate but equal” is not equal. What you can do in accepting someone into your religious community or your home is not the same as what you can do in operating in the public market places.

  • As a matter of law, IF the cake baker provides a standard product to everyone else, or the wedding planner provides a standard product to everyone else, then they are required to provide that standard product to everyone.

    IF the cake baker is requested to do a custom cake, or does custom cakes as livelihood, and she or he is requested to provide a rainbow icing with two men on the top, the caker baker is entitled to object to making a statement to which she or he has objections. The same applies to the wedding planner.

    The reason is that the First Amendment specifically protects a citizen against being compelled to make speech with which that citizen disagrees. That is why, for example, a student cannot be compelled to say the Pledge of Allegiance.

    If that offends you, you should get behind the effort to call a Constitutional Convention and at the Convention you can propose amending the First Amendment to achieve what you think it should.

  • I think so. But I think there needs to be some limits on what states can do. After all, look at what states have tried to do so far. So many Republican state legislatures work to limit access to abortion entirely, rather than finding ground that recognizes what Blackmun called a “right to privacy.” They make up restrictions on abortion clinics and providers that are extreme and intended to make access to abortions harder, not to make an abortion safer.

    The Blackmun decision recognized that states may have a more compelling interest in protecting both the mother and the unborn child in later states of the pregnancy, when there is greater development of the fetus and there remain dangers to the health of the mother. But if the state has a “more compelling interest” in protecting a child after the three month point is reached, and refuses to allow an abortion, then the state should pay for the woman’s health care and for the birth of the child. The state should assure the woman has paid time off from work in the latter stages of the pregnancy and for a recovery period after birth – or provides that support directly. And, if the state denies an abortion due to fetal defect, then the state must provide for the care that child will need when born and as long as that child lives. (Even I think this goes to far. But the question remains: where are the lines drawn?)

    At a federal level there needs to be more definition of what states can and cannot do that limit a woman’s choices. That can be federal laws, federal regulations, or Supreme Court decisions. We need a great deal of input from the medical profession, not legislators, on what makes an abortion available but safe. We cannot leave it all up to states. The Republicans have made abundantly clear that they consider a woman’s womb a public good to which a woman has no right to “privacy”, much less control. While I am particularly critical of Republicans, I am not sure the Democrats would work toward a “middle ground” either.

    I appreciate Camosy recognizing that the extremes on both sides of this issue need to step back. But I want him to talk about how we find that ground both sides can stand on.

  • I get it with the “custom cake” baker. I am making the point that they have to at least provide the same cake for a gay couple that they would provide for a straight couple – not a “custom cake” but a standard cake. Same for the venue holder, the flower shop, the wedding planner, the supplier of chairs and tables.

    And I am making the point that these are the same excuses made by those who wanted to keep Jim Crow laws down in the South to keep the “separate but equal” schools, the limits on Blacks from restaurants, hotels, cake bakers, flowers for weddings, and drinking fountains.

    The same ugliness is present, whether or not you want to admit it.

  • You’re talking, of course, about a grocery: a shelf full of size 6 standard issue cakes.

    Nothing like that has hit the courts.

    The fact that you happen not to like “excuses” is more or less irrelevant.

    All that is relevant is the law, the facts, and the application of the law to those facts.

  • I am talking about any floral shop that makes flower arrangements for many occasions, including weddings. Same with bakeries, wedding venue owners, etc. I get the difference between someone ordering some particular language on a cake, or a picture or shape that would be offensive. But, if someone would sell a particular product to one person then he/she needs to sell it to any person who comes in and asks for it – whether that person is black or white, Muslim/Christian/Jew/Hindu, straight or gay, male or female.

    The “excuses” are the opportunity to discriminate and if one “excuse” can be used because of religious belief then other “excuses” are equally valid. Why not allow discrimination based on color since that is a religious belief of some people? Or why not allow discrimination that would allow particular Christians to refuse to sell to Jews, Hindus, Catholics, Muslims – for the simple reason that their religion considers the beliefs evil? Why draw a religious allowance line on gay/straight lines when such a line is not allowed for other reasons?

  • I get that. But if the cake baker would bake a vanilla cake with vanilla icing using particular decorations for one wedding, then she/he should be required to sell the same cake to anyone asking for it.

  • It would depend on the “particular decorations”.

    Speech is much broader than speaking and writing.

  • If the “excuses” involve the Bill of Rights, the party ends for your position.

    I can envision certain types of discrimination based on color passing constitutional muster.

    We draw religious and free speech lines because of the First Amendment, the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993, and so on. It’s the price of freedom.

    While your approach has the advantage of simplicity, it has the disadvantage in some cases of being illegal, unconstitutional, or both.