The Supreme Court ruled 7-2 Monday in favor of a Colorado bakery’s right to refuse to make a wedding cake for a gay couple because to do so would violate the owner’s religious beliefs. The decision was a narrow one, and it allowed the court to avoid a wider ruling on whether private businesses can discriminate against gays and lesbians. In the wake of that case, a new one is brewing, Reuters reports, this time over whether religion-based adoption agencies can discriminate against gay couples wishing to adopt.

Nine states already allow these agencies to refuse adoptions to gay families: Alabama, Mississippi, Michigan, North Dakota, South Dakota, Texas, Virginia, Kansas and Oklahoma

Multiple state courts have already seen challenges to these laws, which could eventually go all the way to the Supreme Court.

Of those cases, Reuters reports:

Advocates for gay, bisexual and transgender people sued in Michigan last year over that state’s restrictions, imposed in 2015, while a sweeping law passed in Mississippi a year later has already survived one legal challenge.

Separately, Catholic Social Services in Philadelphia sued the city last month after municipal officials stopped placing children with the group, part of the city’s Roman Catholic archdiocese, over its religious objections to gay marriage.

Although this week’s Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission decision was on narrow grounds, it’s giving ammunition to right-wing groups in the adoption fight.

Matt Sharp, a lawyer who represented the owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop, told Reuters, “In my experience, a lot of the rhetoric being tossed around to justify why (private) agencies shouldn’t be given (government) contracts has been that they are ‘religious bigots,’ a lot of the same language directed against Jack,” Sharp said, meaning Jack Phillips, the owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop. “That type of hostility is not permissible.”

This means that opponents of adoption by gay persons could argue that forcing private agencies to allow gay couples to adopt or even foster children would constitute religious discrimination.





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