This week’s Masterpiece Cake decision demonstrates why we must continue to invest directly in building the power of our LGBTQ communities and provides yet another reminder of why we cannot rely on the State and/or the Courts to be the (sole) source of our collective liberation.
As LGBTQ people living in rural areas and small towns, we know that there often is only one (if any) option: one hospital; one school; one hardware store; one diner; one general store; yes, even one bakery. And we likely have to travel some distance to access any of those resources! It is critically important in our small communities that every existing option for services of all kinds be open to us as LGBTQ people because while the ability to purchase a wedding cake may not be life or death* many other situations we face are.
We know that the prevailing analysis of the Masterpiece decision says it is a narrow ruling. To be sure, the main question of whether nondiscrimination laws will continue to be upheld was largely skirted. However, the door has been cracked open just a bit wider for those who would rather not see us continue to thrive. We reject the possibility that this decision could lead to a future where people are justified in denying our access to things like emergency medical care or calling us by our names in classrooms. We will continue standing together in the struggle for our collective liberation as LGBTQ folks have done before us for generations. The arc of history is long, friends, but we know that it bends toward justice.
- HB Lozito, executive director, Green Mountain Crossroads