Silly SCOTUS Busy on a Non-case and a Non-existent Gay Couple

Sometimes history—including current history—is so absurd that it has to make one laugh (as well as cry).  People with intense ideologies–and fascism is nothing if it is not an intense ideology–tend not to have very good senses of humor. 

“Welcome to DeSantis!” Randy Rainbow satirizes the Florida governor with a parody of “Welcome to the 60s” from Hairspray.

This is one reason that, believe it or not, drag queens have been dragged into current political “discourse” (“discourse” in quotes for obvious reasons) where certain politicians (for example in Florida) are keen to outlaw drag shows. 

If you don’t have a sense of humor—and ideologues rarely do—you will never get drag.  While on that topic, I highly recommend Randy Rainbow’s satiric look (above) at this particular issue in Florida’s America. 

But two more calls for sense of humor—as well as sense of outrage—have emerged from recent SCOTUS decisions.  

The first concerns the decision to disallow debt relief for Americans when it comes to past student loans.  Supreme Court judge Elena Kagan makes the point in her objection to this ruling from her colleagues that it really is none of their business telling Congress what it can and cannot do on such matters as these. 

The Supreme Court’s decisions on student loans and affirmative action sharply divide the justices along ideological lines, Supreme Court analyst Marcia Coyle tells PBS NewsHour

She summarizes her objection more eloquently than I do:

In a case not a case, the majority overrides the combined judgement of the Legislative and Executive branches with the consequence of eliminating loan forgiveness for 43 million Americans.

The case they took up is not a case (for the Supreme Court to decide).  It is a case for legislators and executive branch of government to decide—which they did.

But that case is not the sole rabbit hole that the current Supreme Court, thoroughly compromised by at least two members hobnobbing with right-wing billionaires with cases before the court, has chosen to enter.  The second rabbit hole concerns their decision to support a startup web designer who wanted to deny a gay couple her not-yet-launched services to announce their wedding.

New Republic staff writer Melissa Gira Grant questioned the straight man who supposedly requested the gay marriage website in 303 Creative v. Elenis, suggesting a false basis for the conjectural case enabling bias against LGBTQ people. MSNBC

This is as silly as silly gets. Why? Because, it turns out, the gay couple in the complaint does not exist.

Then-wannabe web-maker Lorie Smith, who brought the complaint to the court—and won—made up a fictitious case.  The alleged requester of her services, identified as a man named Stewart, is straight, married to a woman, and is himself a web designer.  Yet the Supreme Court, so eager to deny gays as well as women their rights, never bothered to check on him.  

To be continued.


See Matthew Fox, Confessions: The Making of a Post-denominational Priest, pp. 70-73.

And Fox, Sins of the Spirit, Blessings of the Flesh: Transforming Evil in Soul and Society.

To read the transcript of Matthew Fox’s video teaching, click HERE.

Banner Image: “Kangaroo Court.” Supreme Court photo on Wikimedia Commons; kangaroo photo by James Wainscoat on Unsplash

Queries for Contemplation

Do you agree that a sense of humor is often lacking in far- right politics?  How do you develop your sense of humor—even in hard times?

Recommended Reading

Confessions: The Making of a Post-Denominational Priest (Revised/Updated Edition)

Matthew Fox’s stirring autobiography, Confessions, reveals his personal, intellectual, and spiritual journey from altar boy, to Dominican priest, to his eventual break with the Vatican. Five new chapters in this revised and updated edition bring added perspective in light of the author’s continued journey, and his reflections on the current changes taking place in church, society and the environment.
“The unfolding story of this irrepressible spiritual revolutionary enlivens the mind and emboldens the heart — must reading for anyone interested in courage, creativity, and the future of religion.”
—Joanna Macy, author of World as Lover, World as Self

Sins of the Spirit, Blessings of the Flesh: Transforming Evil in Soul and Society

Visionary theologian and best-selling author Matthew Fox offers a new theology of evil that fundamentally changes the traditional perception of good and evil and points the way to a more enlightened treatment of ourselves, one another, and all of nature. In comparing the Eastern tradition of the 7 chakras to the Western tradition of the 7 capital sins, Fox allows us to think creatively about our capacity for personal and institutional evil and what we can do about them. 
“A scholarly masterpiece embodying a better vision and depth of perception far beyond the grasp of any one single science.  A breath-taking analysis.” — Diarmuid O’Murchu, author of Quantum Theology: Spiritual Implications of the New Physics

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6 thoughts on “Silly SCOTUS Busy on a Non-case and a Non-existent Gay Couple”

  1. Avatar

    For all the various signs of holiness focused on recently – gratitude, generosity, compassion, expansiveness/immensity – perhaps we’re invited to add humor as well.. Few things cut across cultural, political and ethnic divides, and have the power to unite people, like healthy humor. While there is much in our midst that is decidedly not funny, there is much that is, and a good laugh at the often absurd and ridiculous situations that we all find ourselves in can be a spark of healing and humility. Humor and storytelling hold power like few other forms of expression.

  2. Avatar
    Blair Fielding

    Matthew, thank you for your talk today. I LOVED your personal sharing and your laughter… It felt warm and healing… Thank you… It lifted my spirits at what is weighing heavy on my heart and soul given the world situation… Thanks again…Blair

  3. Avatar

    Thank you Matthew for sharing your sense of humor with your personal memories and also the DM team’s sense of humor with the enclosed video “Welcome to DeSantis.” I agree that a sense of humor is often lacking in ‘far right politics,’ as well as wisdom and genuine spirituality. I doubt if Hitler had a healthy sense of humor.
    Besides faith in Truth and Justice, thank God that our spiritual journeys for Justice with our fellow sisters and brothers includes the Spirit of Joy to console our tears of Compassion (Healing and Forgiveness) along our evolution together here on beautiful Sacred Mother Earth with our co-Creator~Source’s Present and Living Spirit of Loving Diverse Oneness….

  4. Avatar

    All you have to do is look at our two former presidents to see examples of having and not having a sense of humor. One, beloved by the far right who couldn’t laugh at himself, couldn’t even attend the Washington Press Corps dinner, the other who not only attended the dinner but engaged and laughed at himself.

  5. Avatar

    I love Matthew’s stories. Zealots of whatever political persuasion lack a sense of humor–they can be cruel and mocking, as DeSatan and his allies are, and the way some of the Fox folks are, but they are never light hearted. Those of us in the danger zones like Florida have to develop a keen sense of humor as well as a deeper faith and sense of compassion for those who are being damaged. Humor is often an expression of both joy and sorrow. My go-to used to be Stephen Colbert, but the writers’ strike, which is wholly justified IMO, has prevented his sharp wit from taking on the current nonsense. FB has an open site called The Laughing Librarian, which has some of the funniest comments and memes. It also has the inevitable FB criticizers and pedants, and reading the ridiculous arguments can be amusing in itself. Laughter, whole body laughter, is healing.

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