The LGBTQ community had its eyes on two court decisions on Jan. 4. First: The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia ruled that the Trump administration’s ban on transgender service members does not constitute a “blanket ban,” because it specifically applies to transgender people who have medically transitioned or experience gender dysphoria. The court ruled to uphold the ban, unlike every lower court that has weighed its validity. This decision will not have an immediate effect; the administration cannot yet impose these restrictions, since three federal judges have issued injunctions.
More locally, a federal judge ruled that Jack Phillips, owner of Lakewood’s Masterpiece Cakeshop, may proceed with his lawsuit against the state of Colorado. Phillips, who refused to make a cake for a gay couple in 2012, won his case in the U.S. Supreme Court in 2018 as a result of the Colorado Civil Rights Commission’s alleged hostility toward his faith. Recently, a transgender woman filed another complaint against Phillips when he refused to bake a cake for her gender transition. The commission decided the claim was valid, but Phillips believes he has been treated with undue hostility. The individual commissioners involved will face no liability.