June 4, 2018. DignityUSA, the organization of Catholics committed to justice, equality, and full inclusion of LGBTQI people in our church and society, expresses its disappointment with the Supreme Court’s ruling in favor of Masterpiece Cakeshop, but is encouraged that the Court ruled narrowly, based on the particulars of this case.
“It is deeply concerning that businesses can be allowed to deny services to LGBTQI people, and to justify this discrimination on the basis of religious belief, under any circumstances. We worry that the narrowness of this ruling will be ignored, and more people will find themselves not able to access the goods and services available to the general public,” said Marianne Duddy-Burke, Executive Director of DignityUSA.
“Like most Americans, we strongly believe that people’s faith or lack of faith, should be respected. What we find problematic is when laws or regulations favor one religious perspective over others. People of faith have diverse beliefs about sexual orientation and gender identity, and we believe that this reality must be respected. However, belief should never harm another person. Our entire civil rights structure in this country is based on ensuring that everyone has equality under the law.”
Duddy-Burke said, “It is important that we recall that the decision applies to a very specific situation and is not a sweeping policy change. We must ensure that progress toward greater inclusion continues.”
Duddy-Burke continued, “It is very unfortunate that this ruling reinforces the ‘God vs. gay’ narrative that has pervaded our discourse and policy-making. Many LGBTQI people and others who are working towards full equality in our country are people of deep faith and know that our identities are sacred gifts. We remain committed to working for equality in a way that honors all people.”