Mystal: SCOTUS Religious Liberty Case Will Bring US Back to Jim Crow

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On Monday, the United States Supreme Court heard oral arguments on a free speech and religious liberty case centered on a graphic designer Lorie Smith who has been compelled to create graphics and designs for same-sex “weddings” if it’s requested of her by potential clients. This is antithetical to Smith’s religious beliefs. Smith told The Daily Signal “[T]he state of Colorado is censoring and compelling my speech and forcing me to create custom artwork, custom expression, that goes against the core of who I am and what I believe.”

Naturally, on Monday night’s All In with Chris Hayes on MSNBC, The Nation justice correspondent Elie Mystal took issue with this case and used it to fearmonger that the Supreme Court ruling in favor of Smith will bring the United States back to Jim Crow. 

Mystal started off by noting that “what the website designer is trying to say, is that she has a content-based reason to discriminate against the messages that she’s willing to do. And she is the right to have that content-based discrimination.” 

He didn’t stop there as he should’ve. Instead, he went off the deep end like he always does and falsely claimed “what she’s doing is going for status-based discrimination. She’s trying to say that gay people can’t come into my store.” 

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“No gay person is asking her to do anything,” Mystal falsely claimed. “But she’s trying to say that gay people cannot come into your store and that’s something that takes us right back to the Jim Crow era.” 

If “no gay person is asking her to do anything” like Mystal claims, then this court case would never have been filed. 

Mystal then fearmongered that religious liberty is akin to African Americans being denied service at restaurants: “It used to be that the racist lunch counter people were just like, I have an objection, I have a religious objection to black people at my store. You can’t say that. We’ve moved beyond that. People like Sam Alito are trying to take us back.”

Not to be outdone in the bad legal takes department, host Chris Hayes jumped in to whine about the “use of the First Amendment as this kind of like weapon for the dominant group versus the marginalized group.” 

This buffoonish segment on MSNBC was made possible by Chase. Their information is linked.

To read the relevant transcript click “expand”: 

MSNBC’s All In with Chris Hayes
12/5/2022
8:56:33 p.m. Eastern 

ELIE MYSTAL: What Lorie is trying to say, what the website designer is trying to say, is that she has a content-based reason to discriminate against the messages that she’s willing to do. And she is the right to have that content-based discrimination. However, what she’s doing is going for status-based discrimination. She’s trying to say that gay people can’t come into my store. 

Not that she—I guess we’ve all been saying this, no gay person is asking her to do anything. But she’s trying to say that gay people cannot come into your store and that’s something that takes us right back to the Jim Crow era. Because it used to be that the racist lunch counter people were just like, I have an objection, I have a religious objection to black people at my store. You can’t say that. We’ve moved beyond that. People like Sam Alito are trying to take us back. 

CHRIS HAYES: It seems to me that you’ve got this weird perverse thing happening in the court if I can sort of step back when you look at the First Amendment. Which is, we think about the First Amendment as sort of protecting rights and obviously, it protects rights in a complicated way because some rights are intentioned within the umbrella of the First Amendment. But going back to say Citizens United which is a First Amendment case, the sort of use of the First Amendment as this kind of like weapon for the dominant group versus the marginalized group, for the powerful rich billionaires versus the voters and public interest. All of a sudden this thing looks like it’s being used by this particular majority on behalf of folks who already have a kind of disproportionate power.

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