Last month, The Daily Citizen reported on a massively important Supreme Court case that will be argued on October 8. In R.G. & G.R. Harris Funeral Homes Inc. v. EEOC, the Supreme Court will decide whether the federal government’s Title VII prohibition of discrimination on the basis of “sex” should be redefined to mean gender identity. In an important move, the Justice Department has courageously asked the Supreme Court not to do so.
Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) has fought this case on behalf of Thomas Rost who The Daily Citizen had the opportunity to interview last year. According to ADF, Rost was sued by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) “over the discharge of an employee who refused to comply with a Michigan funeral home’s sex-specific dress code, which requires employees to dress in a manner sensitive to grieving family members and friends. The EEOC attempted to force the business to allow a biologically male employee to wear a female uniform while interacting with the public.”
In the legal brief that the Justice Department filed, it argued that when Title VII was adopted, no one would have thought that sex really meant gender identity. “In 1964, the ordinary public meaning of ‘sex’ was biological sex. It did not encompass transgender status, which Stephens and the Sixth Circuit describe as a disconnect between an individual’s biological sex and gender identity.”
Furthermore, the brief explained the difference between discrimination on the basis of sex, and discrimination on the basis of one’s transgender status. “Under this Court’s precedent, proving discrimination because of sex under Title VII requires showing that an employer treated members of one sex less favorably than similarly situated members of the other sex. Treating all transgender persons less favorably than non-transgender persons does not violate that rule.”
In addition, the Justice Department warned of some of the consequences that could come if the Supreme Court were to rule against Rost. “The Sixth Circuit’s approach, which equates considering sex with discriminating because of sex, would invalidate all sex-specific policies, from restrooms to dress codes.”
Unsurprisingly, the reaction from the Left has been apocalyptic. BuzzFeed.News ran an article titled, “The Trump Administration Asked The Supreme Court To Legalize Firing Workers Just For Being Transgender.” This headline is quite misleading. The Justice Department did not ask the Supreme Court to legalize transgender discrimination. Title VII prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex, not based on transgender status. If the Left wants to add a prohibition on transgender discrimination into the law, they can do so by amending Title VII through the constitutional process. It is Congress’s job to change the law, not the Supreme Court’s. The Court’s job is not to make law – it’s only to say what the law is.
The Washington Examiner reported that, “This particular brief is significant because the DOJ represents the EEOC, but their brief shows they will depart from the commission’s position that gender identity should be a protected category until Title VII’s sex discrimination clause.”
This is an important case that will have large ramifications for our nation since it could affect every sex-segregated space, school, Christian run business and sex-separated sport. Let’s all be praying the Supreme Court rules with integrity and wisdom.