Amy Coney Barrett, the new Supreme Court nominee, once held a position on a schoolboard that has anti-LGBT policies. Senate Democrats are understandably critical of this but Senate Republicans defend Barrett and have said that nothing will delay the committee’s vote that could strengthen the conservative majority on the Supreme Court, according to CNN.
Barrett served as the trustee for the Trinity Schools, Inc. schoolboard for three years. Trinity Schools is a private, anti-LGBT Christian school system. Some of their policies are that children of same-sex parents are not allowed to attend and that openly LGBT teachers are not welcome in the classrooms.
Mitch McConnel has said in response to the above-mentioned criticism that “The anti-religious bigotry needs to stop. It is an embarrassment to those who propagate it.” Anti-religious bigotry (if that’s what we should call it) is not the type of bigotry that we should be focusing on.
Similarly, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham said that he doesn’t care and hasn’t seen anything about Barrett’s time on the schoolboard. Senator John Cornyn of Texas said “It’s a religious school. I think it’s not surprising and it’s within her rights to send her kids to a religious school… and they observe whatever their doctrine is. I think that’s protected by her religious liberty.”
Meanwhile Senator Barrasso of Wyoming did not mention Barrett’s past, but instead dodged the question by saying that he and the people of Wyoming are “delighted with her nomination” because she is true to the Constitution.”
White House deputy press secretary Judd Deere said that the “Democrats and the media” launched “pathetic personal attacks on her (Barrett) children’s Christian school” although the Supreme Court has repeatedly stated that religious schools are protected under the first amendment.
I am sensing a pattern here.
Trinity Schools, Inc.’s policies were put into place before Barrett’s tenure on the schoolboard and that the schools are affiliated with People of Praise, a Christian group that holds anti-LGBT views and also the group that Barrett served as a handmaid (in reference to the Virgin Mary) in. Additionally, it is reported that at least three out of Barrett’s seven children attended the Trinity School in Indiana.
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer has said that the Democrats will not stop fighting against her confirmation. Democratic Mazie Hirono of Hawaii expressed concerns that neither side has had enough time to review all of the documents as Barrett’s confirmation is being fast-tracked. Hirono said “this is yet another instance of information that I believe we should have had.” I agree with her – not that I believe having this information would make much of a difference, but it’s the principle of the matter.
So there you have it; if confirmed, Amy Coney Barrett could potentially be harmful to LGBT people as far as the law goes, considering that Justices Thomas and Alito brought the repealing of Obergefell v. Hodges to the table. With a Supreme Court with six conservative judges, it is will in the realm of possibility.
Let’s just hope it doesn’t come to that.