Two Atlanta law professors have baked up a fresh take on the cake shop case now pending before the U.S. Supreme Court. It’s about kids.
Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission poses the question of whether a wedding baker can deny service to a same-sex couple on the basis of religious convictions against gay marriage. Both the baker and the couple argue their constitutional rights are in jeopardy.
The case has captured global attention and attracted many layers of amicus briefs supporting both sides.
Georgia State University College of Law professor Tanya Washington and Emory University School of Law professor Barbara Woodhouse speak of the constitutional rights of children to be free from discrimination in an amicus they co-authored with legal scholars from Colorado and California.
The brief addresses a “fundamental truth: discrimination against same sex couples harms” their children.
“This case is about much more than a wedding cake. It is about the rightful place of LGBT people and their families in the commercial and public sphere,” the scholars wrote. “To permit business owners to engage in sexual orientation discrimination would ostracize and stigmatize children because of their relationship to or association with their LGBT parents—an outcome inconsistent with the foundational understandings of legal and social equality in the United States.”
The professors said children have already “begun to bear the brunt of such discrimination, both before and since this Court established marriage equality as the law of the land.”
Cases in point: “A Michigan pediatrician refused to treat an infant based solely on the fact that the child had lesbian mothers. In Kentucky, a judge refused to hear adoption cases of children involving LGBT adoptive-parents-to-be. In Tennessee, a non-denominational private school rejected enrollment for a pre-kindergartener and his 8-month-old sister after discovering that the children had two dads.”
The high court is scheduled to hear oral arguments in Masterpiece Cakeshop in December.