Michigan Supreme Court Hears Major Gay Rights Case

On Wednesday, Michigan’s attorney general requested the state Supreme Court to overturn previous rulings and broaden the state’s anti-discrimination legislation to include gays and lesbians.

People who claim discrimination based on sexual orientation have not been protected by Michigan’s civil rights statute because the word “sex” in the law has only been construed as referring to gender.

In 2019, Rouch World, a Sturgis event facility, refused to host a same-sex wedding, citing a clash with the owner’s religious views. The same year, a transgender lady was refused service at a hair removal salon.

In 2020, the Court of Claims stated that it was bound by a Court of Appeals ruling from decades before, determining sexual orientation was not protected under civil rights legislation.

But, citing historic LGBT rights judgments in federal courts, Attorney General Dana Nessel said it’s time for the state Supreme Court to realize that Michigan’s anti-bias legislation means much more.

Michigan’s ‘Religious Freedom R...
Michigan’s ‘Religious Freedom Restoration Act’

Nessel, who is gay, claims that denying lesbians and gays protection causes “serious and continuous suffering.”

Check out this video on AG Dana Nessel

@mippadvocates We love a queer, Jewish, reproductive rights champion ✊ #dananessel #michigan ♬ Everyone who uses this is gay – Skinnier than you flop

According to Nessel in a court filing, the civil rights law was “enacted to identify and correct inequities in many aspects of public and private life, from employment to housing, to public accommodations and education.”

However, Rouch World’s attorneys argue that it is up to the Legislature, not the courts, to specifically say that discrimination based on sexual orientation is prohibited under Michigan law.

“It is a very clever way of amending the law without going through the Legislature,” David Kallman told the seven justices. “There’s no end to how this kind of theory could be used on any law that’s on the books. That’s something that I think the court should seriously consider.”

Kallman also stated that forcing Rouch World to allow same-sex marriages would be a violation of their religious freedom.

Check out this video of Dana Nessel celebrating pride month.

@clownbeats.com #beyourself #happypride #happypridemonth #dananessel ♬ Sorta Bad Good Great Story – clownbeats.com

Prior to becoming attorney general, Nessel convinced a federal court to overturn Michigan’s ban on gay marriage, a case that eventually reached the United States Supreme Court.

Gavel on rainbow flag under title Michigan Supreme Court Hears Major Gay Rights Case

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