Last Friday, a Washington state florist asked the U.S. Supreme Court to review the Washington State Supreme Court’s decision in State of Washington v. Arlene’s Flowers. The florist had refused to provide flowers for the wedding ceremony of a same-sex couple.
The Washington court held last February that the florist had violated Washington’s non-discrimination law and did not have the right to ignore that law. Americans United filed a friend-of-the-court brief in the state court, explaining that neither freedom of speech nor freedom of religion give Arlene’s Flowers the right to discriminate.
We noted that, if it were otherwise, the florist’s arguments could be used in virtually any context to justify refusals of service, essentially nullifying non-discrimination laws around the country. The Washington State Supreme Court agreed with us.
And if the florist’s petition to the U.S. Supreme Court is granted, you can be sure we’ll be back in court fighting to ensure that religious freedom is not used as an excuse to harm same-sex couples.