LGBTQ+ Supreme Court Case Affects All Packer Students
Throughout the past few weeks, the buzz over a recent Supreme Court case has caused controversy and outrage. The judges seem equally divided on the issue that this case addresses, which is whether job discrimination against gay and transgender workers should be legal.
Specifically, the case concerns two gay men who were fired based on their sexual orientation, and Aimee Stephens, a transgender woman who was fired for expressing herself at work. This is the first LGBTQ+ rights case faced by the Supreme Court since the retirement of Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, a liberal who was an active participant in gaining rights for LGBTQ+ people in many past cases.
Currently, it is legal to discriminate against someone based on sexual orientation or gender in the majority of the country. If won, this case could monumentally shift LBGTQ+ rights in America and set new precedents for equality all throughout the country.
So, how does the possibility for a momentous shift in LGBTQ+ rights affect a Brooklyn independent school such as Packer? When asked how this would impact their experience at school and the world beyond high school, a pan-sexual student who prefers to remain anonymous said, “Though this event might not impact my life at all now, it will impact my life in the future. Freedom of speech should be appreciated, excluding hate speech of any kind.”
Next, I asked student Jayden Cole (’22), a straight cis-gender student at Packer how this affects him and the community as a whole. Cole says that “It affects all of us because there are people in my community that are LGBTQ+. If they are discriminated against and they attend our school, and they’re in the same world as us, then that affects all of us… If one unconstitutional thing is allowed, then everything else wrong can be allowed.” Cole then goes on to explain, “As a black person, we are discriminated against because of the color of our skin. I feel like it’s the same thing…We need to overcome it. Everyone should overcome it. There should be no discrimination based on who you are as a person.”
Despite the fact that Packer works on creating an ultra-accepting community, cases such as this have an influence on our daily life. As Cole eloquently puts it, “This affects all of us in some way or another.”