The Point

The Supreme Court Hands the G’s and the T’s a Major, Major Victory


John Stonestreet

David Carlson

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act prohibits discrimination in employment based on “race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.” When passed in 1964 by Congress, the word “sex” referred to biology, and Congress did not intend for it to include sexual orientation or gender identity.

In a 6-3 decision, the Supreme Court effectively changed that.

Even so, Justice Gorsuch, writing for the majority, denied he was doing any such thing. “We agree that homosexuality and transgender status are distinct concepts from sex,” he said, but went on to say that, in essence, if you wouldn’t fire a man for being attracted to a woman, you can’t fire a woman for being attracted to a woman. Or if a woman can dress like a woman, you can’t fire a man for doing so.

Gorsuch’s opinion was a kind of verbal jiu-jitsu, but the end result, as Justice Alito wrote in dissent, was the Court re-writing the Civil Rights Act. The implications will be widespread.


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