Friday, June 30, 2023

A Dollar In The Hands

The unattractive lesson of the majority opinion is this: What's mine is mine, and what's yours is yours.  The lesson of the history of public accommodations laws is altogether different.  It is that in a free and democratic society, there can be no social castes.  And for that to be true, it must be true in the public market.  For the "promise of freedom" is an empty one if the Government is "powerless to assure that a dollar in the hands of [one person] will purchase the same thing as a dollar in the hands of a[nother]." Jones v. Alfred H. Mayer Co., 392 U. S. 409, 443 (1968).  Because the Court today retreats from that promise, I dissent.

-- Supreme Court Associate Justice Sonia Sotomayor, joined by Justices Elena Kagan and Ketanji Brown Jackson, dissenting in 303 Creative LLC v Elenis, in which the majority found a free speech right for a business to deny service, 30 June 2023

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