Antonin Scalia

In April of 2014—when Antonin Scalia was allegedly still among the living—Alliance Defending Freedom had what I thought was its best religious freedom case in Elane Photography v. Willock. A wedding photographer was the closest they would ever come to their artistry hyperbole. The Supreme Court declined to hear the case letting the ruling against Elane by the New Mexico Supreme Court stand.

On Friday with Antonin Scalia definitely not among the living, Alliance Defending Freedom excitedly announced “Jack Phillips’ Last Stand in an email blast. They continue:

Christian cake artist asks Supreme Court to uphold his freedom

For Jack Phillips, politely declining to design and create a cake for a same-sex wedding wasn’t that moment. It didn’t require any soul searching on his part. And it didn’t require him to weigh the pros and cons. It was the same answer that Jack gave to someone requesting a cake for their Halloween party or bachelor party—No can do, sorry, but I’d be happy to sell you something else.

There is no such thing as polite bigotry. Being willing to sell them something else is irrelevant. There simply are no religious exemptions to otherwise valid laws. Scalia said so in Employment Division v. Smith.

ADF knows that they will lose this case. I seriously doubt that they can get four justices who will want to hear it. The issue is already settled. What this is all about is the solicitation of donations. As long as they can wave Jack Phillips’ bloody handkerchief people are going to donate money. The collection plate will be far heavier than the expenses to petition the Court. So call me a cynic.

By David Cary Hart

Retired CEO. Formerly a W.E. Deming-trained quality-management consultant. Now just a cranky Jewish queer. Gay cis. He/Him/His.